b"SURFACE WATERThanks for joining us, Jordan. Can you tell us about yourself and the work you do? Hofmeier: Sure thing! My name is Jordan Hofmeier. I work with the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks & Tourism as an aquatic ecologist, and my primary job responsibilities are to review development projects for potential impacts to wildlife habitat and to protect endangered species through various conservation efforts. Can you speak to the importance of protecting endangered species, specifically the Scott Riffle Beetle?Hofmeier: Our conservation efforts around the Scott Riffle Beetle (Optioservus phaeus) are important for a couple of reasons. This is one of the only nongame species endemic to Kansas, meaning that it only occurs here, at least as far as we know. Its an important part of our state's biodiversity that we want to maintain.Two, it is listed as an endangered species under our state Nongame and Endangered Species Conservation Act, so by law it must be protected. It's also been petitioned to be federally listed so it's important to a lot of people in our state.Does the beetle itself provide Scott Riffle Beetle any ecological benefits? (Optioservus phaeus) Hofmeier: The Scott Riffle BeetleStatus: Endangeredis limited to the natural springs and Species Class: Invertebratesspring-fed streams in Historic Lake Recovery Plan: Yes Scott State Park. So, given its very limited geographic range, some may Both the adult and larval stages of thisperceive its ecological benefits as small (3 mm) black beetle are aquatic. minimal. But for the springs it inhabits, The preferred habitat is the surface of its a pretty dominant component stones of well-oxygenated flowing water.for the aquatic insect community. It has substantial interaction with the Source: KDWPT, Scott Optioservus Riffle Beetle Overview periphyton that grows on the rocks, and also provides food for other insects and fish in the local ecosystem.Whos Minding the Planet? 15"