The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in September will publish its decision on whether to add a rare cave-dwelling Missouri fish to the endangered species list.
The grotto sculpin is believed to exist exclusively in Perry County, Missouri, where it is found in five caves and one stream. The fish have small eyes, a pale color and other features adapted to cave living.
The Southeast Missourian reported the Fish and Wildlife Service will decide whether the area is considered to be critical habitat. The cost of protecting the fish could range up to $4 million.
Perry County economic development director Scott Sattler doesn't believe the area will be classified as a critical habitat because people in the community have already been protective of the environment.