The once-bipartisan law has become politicized in recent years - and since January, the threats have gotten worse. Twenty bills that would either directly or indirectly nix protections for endangered species have been introduced to Congress since January, according to Hartl. While it's unclear how many of the bills will come up for a vote, the sheer number of bills against the ESA is alarming.
"One new piece of legislation has been introduced on average every four days to go after the ESA specifically or an endangered species," Hartl said. "In the short term, the biggest threat to the ESA will come from Congress."