In this Sept. 30, 2021, file photo, a New England cottontail rabbit hops away after being released at the Wells National Estuarine Research Reserve in Wells. Credit: Robert F. Bukaty / AP

Maine’s two U.S. senators have signed on to a push to improve protections for America’s wildlife.

Republican U.S. Sen. Susan Collins and independent U.S. Sen. Angus King said they’re co-sponsoring the Recovering America’s Wildlife Act. The proposal is designed to create new federal investment in wildlife conservation work led by states, territories and tribal nations.

The senators said the proposal would dedicate money to help recover species. In Maine, that would include the New England cottontail, a species of rabbit. They said the state would receive more than $11 million per year.

The proposal requires 25 percent non-federal matching money, which would bring the total amount to more than $15 million.

The legislation “would deliver the most significant investment in America’s wildlife in decades, putting resources where they can be most effective,” said Kate Dempsey, state director for The Nature Conservancy in Maine.