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Public consulted in species conservation

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The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission is asking for public input on a series of drafts to preserve about two dozen native wildlife species.

After reading each plan of action for the 23 species, people can comment with their thoughts through March 13. The FWC will take these comments into consideration when it makes its imperiled species management plan.

Claire Sunquist Blunden, stakeholder coordinator for imperiled species management planning, said by opening commentary to the public, the FWC hopes to get feedback from public partners and people who feel they have some insight into how to aid these imperiled species.

“We are looking for assistance. We know we can’t accomplish all the things in the plan by ourselves,” she said. “We also want perspective from the public on how it could impact them or how these plans might affect their daily life.”

Sunquist Blunden said drafts are usually about 300 pages long, but these action plans were cut down to 25 to 30 pages and include glossaries to make it easier for the public to read and understand.

“They are much more approachable and may be easier to read for the general public,” she said.

The first 23 species include 11 birds, five species of fish, four mammals, two reptiles and one amphibian. The FWC hopes to aid 60 species in total.

Sunquist Blunden said after March 13, the next group of species will be discussed, and the third group will be released in April. From June 2013 to Feb. 2014, the plans will be read to look for common strategies and themes, and they will be compiled into a final plan by spring 2014.

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