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Conservation banks are permanently protected lands containing natural resource values. Lands designated as conservation banks are conserved and managed for species that are endangered, threatened, or candidates for being listed as endangered or threatened, or are considered species-at-risk. In the United States, more than 120 conservation banks have been approved by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, preserving roughly 100,000 acres of valuable habitat for more than 60 threatened or endangered species. These conservation banks have been approved in 11 states, including California, which boasts roughly 25 percent of all the conservation banks in the United States. The program for conservation banks dates back to the early 1990s, when the FWS began approving conservation banks for a variety of species. Lands eligible to become conservation banks include private, tribal, state, and local government lands. However, lands that were previously designated for conservation purposes through another program are ineligible unless their designation as a conservation bank would provide an additional benefit to the species the land is protecting. Learn more about conservation banks at