Solving conservation problems requires students to apply their knowledge of ecology and evolution. We present the Endangered Species Conservation through Habitat Suitability Analysis Laboratory Activity , in which students perform habitat suitability analyses for endangered freshwater species, compelling application of ecological and evolutionary principles. Students gather natural history information for endangered species native to Illinois, synthesize publicly available GIS/map data and habitat requirements for an endangered species, and present evidence-based proposals identifying geographical regions that should be set aside for protection. Students discuss current freshwater conservation issues and develop conceptual understanding of evolution, ecology, and conservation principles and processes. Students are prompted to consider human inclusion in freshwater ecosystems and its consequences. This laboratory investigation is effective in highlighting naïve conceptions of ecology, evolution, and conservation because students are prompted to provide rationale for their management decisions and engage in scientific discourse as they conduct their habitat suitability analyses.