Missouri’s First Conservation Bank To Benefit Endangered Bats

Conservation Employees’ Credit Union

Money Matters Fall 2018 Issue

Partnering with Burns & McDonnell, the Missouri Conservation Heritage Foundation (MCHF) opened the Chariton Hills Conservation Bank. This is the first conservation bank in Missouri to be approved by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service. It’s also the first nationwide conservation bank to protect the endangered Indiana bat and northern long-eared bat, which inhabit caves and forests in the eastern and midwestern part of the United States.

Conservation banks are areas of land set aside that permanently protect threatened or endangered species and their habitats. These banks function to offset adverse impacts to these species that occurred in similar, nearby ecosystems. In exchange for permanently protecting the land and managing it for these species, the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service approves a specified number of habitat or species credits that financial institutions may sell.

“The concentration of Indiana and northern long-eared bats in this tri-state area presents significant opportunities to benefit the species,” said Kevin Roper, MCHF Executive Director. “Our board of directors have taken up the challenge and developed a strategy to support endangered species as well as the land bank program.”

“We are excited to work with Burns & McDonnell and the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service to enhance conservation programs in Missouri,” said Roper.

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