The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has a long tradition of scientific excellence and always uses the best-available science to inform its work to conserve fish, wildlife, plants, and their habitat for the benefit of the American public.
Created in 1903 by President Theodore Roosevelt, today's National Wildlife Refuge System protects habitats and wildlife across the country, from the Alaskan tundra to subtropical wetlands. Managed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Refuge System's 560-plus refuges cover more than 150 million acres and protect nearly 1,400 species of birds, mammals, reptiles, amphibians, and fish.
While national wildlife refuges were created to protect wildlife, they are for people too. Refuges are ideal places for people of all ages to explore and connect with the natural world. We invite you to learn more about and visit the national wildlife refuges and wetland management districts in Colorado, Kansas, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, Utah, and Wyoming.
The Mountain-Prairie Region's Office of Ecological Services (ES) works to restore and protect healthy populations of fish, wildlife, and plants and the environments upon which they depend. Using the best available science, ES personnel work with Federal, State, Tribal, local, and non-profit stakeholders, as well as private land owners, to avoid, minimize, and mitigate threats to our Nation's natural resources.
Providing leadership in the conservation of migratory bird habitat through partnerships, grants, and outreach for present and future generations. The Migratory Bird Program is responsible for maintaining healthy migratory bird populations for the benefit of the American people.
The U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service Fish and Aquatic Conservation Program in the Mountain-Prairie Region helps conserve, protect, and enhance aquatic resources and provides economically valuable recreational fishing to anglers across the country. The program comprises 12 National Fish Hatcheries.
Law enforcement is essential to virtually every aspect of wildlife conservation. The Office of Law Enforcement contributes to Service efforts to manage ecosystems, save endangered species, conserve migratory birds, preserve wildlife habitat, restore fisheries, combat invasive species, and promote international wildlife conservation.
External Affairs staff in the Mountain-Prairie Region of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service provides support to the regional office and field stations to communicate and faciliate information about the Service's programs to the public, media, Congress, Tribes, partners, and other stakeholders in the 8-state region.
The Colorado Ecological Service Field Office recommends whether plant and animal species should be listed under the Endangered Species Act, plans and coordinates the recovery of listed species, and reviews Federal projects that may affect listed species.
We provide biological advice and assistance to Federal and State agencies, industry, and members of the public concerning the conservation of fish, wildlife, rare plants, and their habitats. Our biologists assess the potential effects of projects on threatened and endangered plant and animal species and migratory birds. In Colorado, these projects typically include activities such as oil and gas development, ski area development, mining, utility lines, and highway construction. We also assess the effects of contaminants on fish and wildlife. We then recommend ways to avoid, minimize, or mitigate harmful impacts on fish and wildlife resources and their habitats.
We have two offices to efficiently serve our conservation partners. Our office in Lakewood at the Denver Federal Center works primarily on Eastern Slope issues. Our office in Grand Junction works primarily on Western Slope issues.
Colorado is also home to the National Black-Footed Ferret Conservation Center. The Center has developed a successful captive breeding program, which establishes breeding adults in captivity, while continuing to return black-footed ferrets to the wild. For more black-footed ferret recovery information, please visit the Service's website or the Black-Footed Ferret Recovery Implementation Team's website.