Photo shows different parts of elephants that have been harvested.  Some have been made into art or stools.
Elephants are being slaughtered for ivory and other parts at unprecedented rates. Credit: USFWS

Advisory Council on Wildlife Trafficking Sets First Meeting

November 27, 2013
A federal advisory council on wildlife trafficking will convene on December 16th to discuss committee structure and organization, the National Strategy to Combat Wildlife Trafficking, and other business. The Council was established in response to President Obama's Executive Order issued earlier this year to enhance coordination of U.S. Government efforts to combat wildlife trafficking and assist foreign governments with capacity building.
Federal Register notice »
Advisory Council Members »
Executive Order »
Learn more about recent efforts to stop wildlife trafficking »
At National Elk Refuge in Wyoming, visitors enjoy a sleigh ride past wintering elk. Credit: Lori Iverson / USFWS
At National Elk Refuge in Wyoming, visitors enjoy a sleigh ride past wintering elk. Credit: Lori Iverson / USFWS

Have a Holly, Jolly Season at a National Wildlife Refuge

November 25, 2013
This winter at some national wildlife refuges, you can hear sleigh bells ring, join in carols or turn fresh pine boughs into a festive holiday wreath. Many refuges will host free, family-friendly holiday-season activities through the New Year. See what holiday treats are in store at a refuge near you.
Bulletin »
Thumbnail cover of Fish & Wildlife News Fall 2013. Credit: USFWS
Thumbnail cover of Fish & Wildlife News Fall 2013. Credit: USFWS

Fish & Wildlife News Celebrates 40th Anniversary of Endangered Species Act

November 25, 2013
With the 40th anniversary of the signing of the Endangered Species Act just a month away, Fish & Wildlife News takes a look at the Act, its history and milestones, success stories from around the nation and more.
Read the Fish and Wildlife News »

Learn more about the Endangered Species Act »
Red knot at Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge, DE Credit: USFWS
Wind turbines in Wyoming. Credit: Scott Covington / USFWS

Utility Sentenced for Killing Protected Birds at Wyoming Wind Projects

November 22, 2013
Duke Energy Renewables Inc. pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court in Wyoming today to violating the federal Migratory Bird Treaty Act (MBTA) in connection with the deaths of protected birds, including golden eagles, at two of the company's wind projects in Wyoming. The company was sentenced to pay fines, restitution and community service totaling $1 million and was placed on probation for five years, during which it must implement an environmental compliance plan aimed at preventing bird deaths at the company's four commercial wind projects in the state. This case represents the first ever criminal enforcement of the MBTA involving wind projects.
News Release »

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Red knot at Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge, DE Credit: USFWS
Yadkin River goldenrod. Credit: USFWS

Service Releases Annual List of Candidates for Endangered Species Act Protection

November 22, 2013
The Service today released the Candidate Notice of Review, a yearly status appraisal of plants and animals that are candidates for Endangered Species Act protection. Since the last review in November 2012, three species have been removed from candidate status; three other species have a change in priority. The Yadkin River goldenrold was removed following a Candidate Conservation Agreement with Alcoa.  A similar agreement with federal and state partners aided removal of Brand's phacelia from the list. There are now 146 species recognized by the Service as candidates for ESA listing.
News Release »

Federal Register Notice »
Learn More »
Red knot at Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge, DE Credit: USFWS
Red knot at Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge, DE Credit: USFWS

Sharing Science to Safeguard the Red Knot

November 21, 2013
With one of longest migration routes in the animal kingdom, the red knot uses spring and fall stopover beach areas along the Atlantic and Gulf coasts. However, this well-traveled shorebird is losing habitat along its range. North Atlantic Landscape Conservation Cooperative partners are sharing science through projects to better understand the impact of sea level rise on the Atlantic Coast and provide information on how to prioritize beach restoration, conservation and management efforts for this fascinating bird.
Learn More »

North Atlantic LCC
Suisun Marsh, California. Credit: USFWS
Suisun Marsh, California. Credit: USFWS

New Report Reveals Continuing Coastal Wetlands Losses in U.S.

November 21, 2013
A report released today by the Service and NOAA Fisheries shows that overall, the U.S. is losing 80,000 acres of coastal wetlands each year to development, sea level rise, some forestry practices and other causes. Wetlands are vital to the survival of diverse fish and wildlife species, help sustain the country's multi-billion-dollar coastal fisheries and outdoor recreation industries, improve water quality and protect coastal communities from the effects of severe storms.
News Release »

Read the report »
Learn More »
Gray tree frog. Credit: USFWS
Gray tree frog. Credit: USFWS

Landmark Study Reveals Low Average Rate of Frog Abnormalities on National Wildlife Refugeshoma

November 19, 2013
An unprecedented 10-year study by the Service finds on average fewer than 2 percent of frogs and toads sampled from 152 national wildlife refuges had major physical abnormalities – a rate lower than expected based on earlier reports. The study also identifies regional "hotspot clusters" where there are concentrations of higher abnormality rates.
News Release »

Read Study »
Learn More »
Arkansas River shiner. Credit: USFWS
Arkansas River shiner. Credit: USFWS

Small Fish Overcomes Big Challenges in Oklahoma

November 19, 2013
To recognize the Endangered Species Act's 40th anniversary, each week we feature a different state and its unique story. This week we learn about efforts to restore the Arkansas River shiner, a small fish found in Oklahoma. The fish was once widespread throughout the southern Great Plains, inhabiting more than 3,200 miles of large sand-bed rivers. It was listed as threatened in 1998 due to habitat loss. Today, the Service is working with partners to conserve the quantity and quality of water within the shiner's range to aid in its recovery. 
ESA 40th Anniversary »
Get to Know Your Species »
Arkansas River shiner. Credit: USFWS
California Red-Legged Frog. Credit: Flo Gardipee / USFWS

Settlement Will Result in Section 7 Consultations for Effects of Seven Pesticides on California Red-Legged Frog

November 18, 2013

U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California recently approved a settlement agreement involving U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Environmental Protection Agency and Center for Biological Diversity that will result in the completion of Endangered Species Act section 7 consultations for the effects of seven pesticides on the California red-legged frog. The seven pesticides are glyphosate, malathion, simazine, pendimethalin, permethrin, methomyl and myclobutanil.
News Release »

Confiscated ivory following destruction today by the crusher. Credit: USFWS U.S. Destroys Seized Ivory, Urges Global Community to Crush Wildlife Trafficking
Confiscated ivory following destruction today by the crusher. Credit: USFWS U.S. Destroys Seized Ivory, Urges Global Community to Crush Wildlife Trafficking

Confiscated ivory following destruction today by the crusher. Credit: USFWS U.S. Destroys Seized Ivory, Urges Global Community to Crush Wildlife Trafficking

November 14, 2013

Six tons of illegal elephant ivory confiscated by U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service law enforcement officers were loaded into an industrial-scale rock crusher and pulverized today at the Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge outside Denver, Colo. Officials from the departments of Justice and State joined Service Director Dan Ashe and leading worldwide conservationists in calling for global action to combat wildlife trafficking and stop the slaughter of elephants and other species.
News Release »
Learn More »

Feeding fish in hatchery raceway.
Credit: George Gentry/USFWS
Feeding fish in hatchery raceway. Credit: George Gentry/USFWS

Service Says No Fish Hatchery Closures This Year; Report Highlights Budget Challenges

November 15, 2013

The Service does not intend to close any of the nation's national fish hatcheries in the current fiscal year but warned that closures may be necessary in in the future. The report released today serves as the basis of discussions with stakeholders on how best to operate the system in a more sustainable manner while supporting the agency's highest fish and aquatic conservation priorities.
News Release »
Frequently Asked Questions »
Full Report »

Report Appendices »

Wild turkeys display at Crab Orchard National Wildlife Refuge in Illinois. Credit: Jim Osborn
Wild turkeys display at Crab Orchard National Wildlife Refuge in Illinois. Credit: Jim Osborn

Take a Walk on the Wild Side This Thanksgiving on a National Wildlife Refuge

November 15, 2013

Explore a foot trail at a national wildlife refuge and thrill to see some seasonal wildlife. Refuge trails are open sunrise to sunset daily, even on Thanksgiving Day when refuge visitor centers will be closed. Free trail maps are available outside the visitor center or at a refuge entrance kiosk. These short walks or runs offer great bird viewing in late November and some refuges will just be entering their peak migratory bird season.
Bulletin »
Find a Refuge trail »

Hibernating Indiana bats (Myotis sodalis). Credit:  Ann Froschauer / USFWS
Hibernating Indiana bats (Myotis sodalis). Credit: Ann Froschauer / USFWS

Wyandotte Cave Shares Colorful History with Indiana Bat

November 12, 2013

To recognize the Endangered Species Act's 40th anniversary, each week we feature a different state and its unique story. This week we learn about one of the first species ever listed as endangered -- the Indiana bat -- and its unique history in the Wyandotte Cave, Indiana. These bats and this cave have gone through dramatic changes throughout the years—mining, onions, torch-bearing tourists and possibly even a ghost. Now biologists are working to ensure Indiana bats continue on their path to recovery.
ESA 40th Anniversary »
Get to Know Your Species »

Trixie Smith, a U.S. Coast Guard veteran, now works at St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge in Florida as the Lead range/forestry technician (fire). Jennifer Hinckley, a Navy spouse, is a prescribed fire specialist. Credit: USFWS
Trixie Smith, a U.S. Coast Guard veteran, now works at St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge in Florida as the Lead range/forestry technician (fire). Jennifer Hinckley, a Navy spouse, is a prescribed fire specialist. Credit: USFWS

Service Salutes Veterans

November 7, 2013

The Service owes a debt of gratitude to military veterans, and we are fortunate that many veterans find their skills can be put to good use conserving the nature of America. In honor of America's veterans and members of the U.S. armed forces and their families, the Service is offering fee-free access for all to national wildlife refuges during Veterans Day weekend Nov. 9 to 11.
Director’s Blog: Veterans Ensure our Freedoms »
Service's Information for Veterans »
Photo Gallery »

Demand for rhino horn is driving increased poaching in Africa. Credit: K. Stromayer / USFWS
Demand for rhino horn is driving increased poaching in Africa. Credit: K. Stromayer / USFWS

New Hampshire Man Charged in Operation Crash

November 8, 2013

An individual who unlawfully sold a rhino head mount to a Service undercover agent for $35,000 has been indicted on federal charges in New Hampshire. He is the sixteenth individual charged to date in Operation Crash – the agency’s ongoing investigation of rhino horn trafficking.
News Release DOJ »

The ivory to be destroyed includes raw elephant tusks, carvings and smaller objects. Credit: USFWS
The ivory to be destroyed includes raw elephant tusks, carvings and smaller objects. Credit: USFWS

U.S. Ivory Stocks Set for Destruction

November 7, 2013
On Nov. 14, the Service will pulverize six tons of illegal elephant ivory seized by law enforcement officers. This "Ivory Crush " is part of the agency's response to the elephant poaching crisis in Africa -- a crisis that cost an estimated 30,000 of the continent's elephants their lives last year.
Learn More »
Birding by boat at Siletz Bay National Wildlife Refuge in Oregon. Credit: USFWS
Birding by boat at Siletz Bay National Wildlife Refuge in Oregon. Credit: USFWS

National Wildlife Refuges Support Over 35,000 Jobs, Pump $2.4 Billion into Local Communities

November 5, 2013
America's national wildlife refuges remain a strong economic engine for local communities across the country according to a new national report released today by Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell. The peer reviewed report by the Service, Banking on Nature, shows that in addition to conserving and protecting public lands for future generations, every dollar invested in the National Wildlife Refuge System generates huge economic dividends for our country.
News Release »
Learn More »
Black rhino. Credit: Richard Ruggiero / USFWS
Black rhino. Credit: Richard Ruggiero / USFWS

Rhino Horn Trafficker Pleads Guilty

November 5, 2013
An Irish national who was arrested by Service special agents in September as he was leaving the United States has pleaded guilty to conspiracy to violate the Lacey Act in connection with the illegal purchase and sale of rhino horns. The defendant faces a potential prison term of up to 5 years.
News Release DOI »
Birding by boat at Siletz Bay National Wildlife Refuge in Oregon. Credit: USFWS
Canada lynx kittens. Credit: USFWS

Canada Lynx Returning to Vermont

November 5, 2013
As part of the Service’s commemoration of the Endangered Species Act’s 40th Anniversary, each week we feature a different state and its unique story to highlight our continued success in recovering threatened and endangered species. This week we learn about efforts to research the abundance of Canada lynx in Vermont. Recent evidence shows a breeding population of lynx in the Nulhegan Basin Division of the Silvio O. Conte National Wildlife Refuge, encouraging signs for this threatened species.
ESA 40th Anniversary »
Learn More »
A Boy Scout sees a photo opportunity at Edwin B. Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge in New Jersey.   Credit: USFWS
A Boy Scout sees a photo opportunity at Edwin B. Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge in New Jersey. Credit: USFWS

Enjoy Fall Events – and a Kaleidoscope of Color – on National Wildlife Refuges

November 4, 2013
Visit a national wildlife refuge and make the most of this colorful time of year. Find free or low-cost seasonal fun in natural settings dressed in red, orange and gold, courtesy of sweet gum, maple, beech and cottonwood trees. Learn how the Refuge System is protecting your natural heritage.
Learn More »
Find a Refuge »
Betsy Hildebrandt. Credit: USFWS
Betsy Hildebrandt. Credit: USFWS

Service Appoints New Assistant Director for External Affairs

November 1, 2013
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Director Dan Ashe today announced the appointment of Betsy Hildebrandt as the agency’s new Assistant Director for External Affairs. Hildebrandt, a communications professional with more than 20 years’ experience in the public and private sectors, will provide strategic program direction and develop policy and guidance to strengthen and expand the Service’s relations with the public, Congress, Native American Tribes, the media and conservation partners.
News Release »