Oregon silverspot butterfly threatened species, By U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service [Public domain], via Wikimedia CommonsBecause of language in the Oregon Natural Heritage Act, the Oregon Biodiversity Information Center (ORBIC) is the state agency responsible for rare and endangered invertebrates in Oregon. As such, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) has granted the program limited authority to administer and manage a program for federally threatened and endangered invertebrate species, as provided under Section 6 of the US Federal Endangered Species Act.

ORBIC has three objectives for the rare and endangered invertebrate program:

  • To gather as much information as possible on those invertebrates that are currently considered rare, threatened or endangered in order to enable managers to protect critical habitat or populations.
  • To promote inventory and taxonomic work on undescribed or poorly known species which may face significant threats.
  • To assist in the USFWS recovery efforts for the three invertebrates already protected under the Endangered Species Act. This includes coordination, inventory, management and research projects for the Oregon silverspot butterfly, the Fender's blue butterfly and the vernal pool fairy shrimp.

The list of invertebrate species in the book Rare, Threatened and Endangered Species of Oregon reflects our current understanding of the status of the rare invertebrates in Oregon. The list, however, represents only a fraction of the diversity of invertebrate species found in Oregon, and is generally biased towards groups that have been well studied (e.g. caddisflies, butterflies, mollusks), and is lacking for groups of other species that are poorly known. In cooperation with federal agencies and Universities, we are hopeful that our continued efforts and partnerships will continue to build upon our current knowledge of rare invertebrate species in Oregon.

You can download a spreadsheet of the invertebrate list or view the PDF of our current and archived RTE books at our Rare Species page.