Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Feds OK 20-Year Plan to Protect Barton Springs Salamanders, Keep Pool Open

I-Hwa Cheng for KUT News

Swimmers and salamanders can continue their peaceful coexistence at Barton Springs Pool.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is granting the City of Austin a new 20-year permit, keeping the pool open to the public while protecting the habitats of both the Barton Springs Salamander and the Austin Blind Salamander.

The announcement comes as the city’s previous 15-year habitat agreement was set to expire, and shortly after both species received federal Endangered Species Act protection.

Chris Herrington is one of the Watershed Protection employees who worked to reach this day.  

“This was over two years of work and we’re really happy that we’ve set a positive direction for keeping this crown jewel of Austin – this fantastic recreational resource and environmental resource – open for the public and charting a clear path for conserving and protecting both the Austin Blind and Barton Springs [salamanders] for the next 20 years.”

You can read the federal Fish and Wildlife permit here.

The city plans a celebration of the agreement at Barton Springs Pool in the month of October.

Trey Shaar is an All Things Considered producer, reporter and host. Got a tip? Email him at Follow him on Twitter @treyshaar.
Related Content