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Threatened and Endangered Species

Under the Endangered Species Act of 1973 and the Illinois Endangered Species Act, IDOT is required to consult with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (U.S. FWS) and the Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) to insure that the department’s projects are not likely to jeopardize the continued existence of any endangered and threatened species (listed species). IDOT Division of Highways, Bureau of Design and Environment (BDE) procedures for consulting with the U.S. FWS and IDNR on these two Acts are detailed in Chapters 26 (section 26-9) and 27 (section 27-1) of the BDE manual.

The department utilizes in-house expertise together with other sources of geographic information to screen project areas for the presence of habitats that may contain or be suitable for a listed species. In the event a listed species is present or there is suitable habitat within a project area, IDOT will conduct surveys through a statewide contract with the Illinois Natural History Survey (INHS) to determine the continued presence of the species and suitable habitat in the area which aids the department in avoiding impacts, minimizing impacts, and as a last case scenario mitigating impacts. More information can be found on the INHS website.

There are occasions where the department will request INHS through the statewide contract to conduct surveys throughout the state or a specific region to gather more data to further streamline consultation with the agencies. One example of that is the survey work performed in District 1 for the Indiana bat. More information can be found under the Indiana Bat (below).

Indiana Bat