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FWS forensic specialist Mary Burnham Curtis prepares to use DNA analysis to identify the species of seized wildlife parts. Credit: USFWS
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Service Forensics Laboratory Called a ‘Hotbed of Research, Discovery and Innovation’

September 9, 2014

The New York Times recently visited the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service Forensics Laboratory in Ashland, Oregon, and wrote about some of the innovative science it has developed in the fight against wildlife trafficking.

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FWS forensic specialist Mary Burnham Curtis prepares to use DNA analysis to identify the species of seized wildlife parts. Credit: USFWS
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Condor Kids, a pilot education program, will teach urban students about efforts to recover the endangered California condor at Hopper Mountain National Wildlife Refuge in California. Credit: Kim Valverde / USFWS
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Service Expands Urban Conservation Program

September 8, 2014

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced today it will partner with communities, corporations and nonprofits to help restore the natural environment and boost opportunities for residents in six cities to connect with nature through the National Wildlife Refuge System’s Urban Wildlife Refuge Partnerships. More than $1.7 million will be directed to community-led habitat restoration projects and engage thousands of volunteers in the efforts.

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Condor Kids, a pilot education program, will teach urban students about efforts to recover the endangered California condor at Hopper Mountain National Wildlife Refuge in California. Credit: Kim Valverde / USFWS
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The acquisition will benefit many migratory bird species. Credit: USFWS
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Land and Water Conservation Fund Enables Growth at Montezuma Refuge in New York

September 3, 2014

Thanks to the Land and Water Conservation Fund, the Fish and Wildlife Service was able to add more than 190 acres of wildlife habitat to Montezuma National Wildlife Refuge in upstate New York.

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The acquisition will benefit many migratory bird species. Credit: USFWS
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Amanda Dickson and Detector Dog Lancer, built in LEGO. Credit: Courtney Celley / USFWS
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The Building Blocks of Women Scientists

September 2, 2014

At the Fish and Wildlife Service, we know the world needs dedicated women scientists, so we strive to show future women scientists some of our real employees who can inspire them to follow their dreams. Taking a cue from toymaker LEGO, which recently introduced a Research Institute set featuring female scientists, folks in our Midwest Region dug out their LEGOs and created their own set.

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Amanda Dickson and Detector Dog Lancer, built in LEGO. Credit: Courtney Celley / USFWS
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Defendants conducted illegal mountain lion and bobcat hunts, charging up to $7,500 per hunt, in Colorado and Utah. Credit: Justin Shoemaker / USFWS
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Guides Guilty in Hunting Conspiracy

August 28, 2014

A hunting outfitter/guide in Colorado and his top assistant have both pleaded guilty to felony conspiracy charges in connection with an illegal hunting operation that ran from 2007 to 2010. The pair and two other assistant guides routinely trapped, shot, and caged mountain lions and bobcats, later releasing the injured animals to provide sure-fire hunts and quick-to-kill trophies for paying clients.

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Defendants conducted illegal mountain lion and bobcat hunts, charging up to $7,500 per hunt, in Colorado and Utah. Credit: Justin Shoemaker / USFWS
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USFWS Assistant Director for Science Applications, Paul Souza. Credit: Kayt Jonsson / USFWS
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FWS Selects New Assistant Director for Science Applications

August 26, 2014

Paul Souza has been selected to be the Assistant Director for Science Applications for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. In this role, Paul will provide leadership to further strengthen our science partnerships, work collaboratively to set conservation priorities, and then leverage the resources to achieve them.

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USFWS Assistant Director for Science Applications, Paul Souza. Credit: Kayt Jonsson / USFWS
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The Fish and Wildlife Service helped fund a conservation easement on more than 170 acres on Girl Scouts of the Chesapeake Bay's Camp Grove Point in Earleville, Maryland. Credit: USFWS
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Service Works with Girl Scouts to Protect Threatened Beetle

August 25, 2014

The Girl Scout mission is to develop girls who "make the world a better place." Did you know that includes a better world for bugs, too? With an easement providing permanent protection on a Girl Scout camp in the Chesapeake Bay area, Girl Scouts are giving the federally threatened Puritan tiger beetle a strong boost toward recovery.

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The Fish and Wildlife Service helped fund a conservation easement on more than 170 acres on Girl Scouts of the Chesapeake Bay's Camp Grove Point in Earleville, Maryland. Credit: USFWS
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Montana Fish and Wildlife Conservation Office biotech, Jason Marsh, holding a male Arctic Grayling collected from Red Rock Creek, Red Rock Lakes National Wildlife Refuge in Montana. Credit: USFWS
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Private Landowners Keep Arctic Grayling from Needing Federal Protection

August 25, 2014

Significant conservation by private landowners has allowed Arctic grayling populations to more than double since 2006, when much of the work began. Thanks to these conservation partnerships, the Fish and Wildlife Service has determined that the fish does not require protection under the Endangered Species Act.

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Montana Fish and Wildlife Conservation Office biotech, Jason Marsh, holding a male Arctic Grayling collected from Red Rock Creek, Red Rock Lakes National Wildlife Refuge in Montana. Credit: USFWS
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Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell and partners at San Diego National Wildlife Refuge Complex sharing the wonders of nature with budding, urban scientists. Credit: DOI
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Secretary Jewell Announces Additional $1 Million to Fund Urban Engagement Efforts at Southern California Wildlife Refuges

August 21, 2014

Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell today announced that the San Diego National Wildlife Refuge Complex will receive an additional $1 million in funding to reach new audiences and engage Southern California urban communities and youth in conservation and outdoor recreation. The refuge is the first among the nation's urban national wildlife refuges to receive this new award through a Service-wide competition.

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Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell and partners at San Diego National Wildlife Refuge Complex sharing the wonders of nature with budding, urban scientists. Credit: DOI
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Forest elephants have thinner, straighter, and pinker tusks than savannah elephants. Credit: Richard Ruggiero / USFWS
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On World Elephant Day, New York Cracks Down on Ivory Trade

August 20, 2014

New York has enacted a law that bans the sale of elephant and mammoth ivory and rhino horn, with a few limited exceptions. The law also increases penalties. It follows a law by New Jersey last week that makes commercial trade of ivory and rhino horn illegal within the state. These laws dovetail with efforts by the Fish and Wildlife Service to implement a near total ban of commercial trade of African elephant ivory into and out of the United States and halt illegal trade of all wildlife products.

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Forest elephants have thinner, straighter, and pinker tusks than savannah elephants. Credit: Richard Ruggiero / USFWS
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Group fishing at the Bladensburg Waterfront Park. Credit: Credit: Kim Lambert / USFWS
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Service Studies Fishing, Contaminants in the Anacostia River

August 19, 2014

As part of its commitment to Environmental Justice, the Fish and Wildlife Service has partnered with Anacostia Watershed Society, University of Maryland College Park and the Anacostia Community Museum to study the patterns of urban anglers (subsistence, recreational and cultural) and fish contaminants in the Anacostia River region. Approximately 17,000 people, many African American or Hispanic, eat fish they catch out of the Anacostia River each year, but the watershed contains toxic hotspots.

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Group fishing at the Bladensburg Waterfront Park. Credit: Credit: Kim Lambert / USFWS
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Demand for ivory products threatens African elephants. Credit: Michelle Gadd / USFWS
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New Jersey Prohibits Trade of Ivory and Rhino Horn

August 13, 2014

With elephants and rhinos threatened with extinction by a tragic wave of poaching, New Jersey is making commercial trade of ivory and rhino horn illegal within the state. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is working to implement a near total ban of commercial trade of African elephant ivory into and out of the United States, and has restricted trade in rhino horn and other wildlife products.

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Demand for ivory products threatens African elephants. Credit: Michelle Gadd / USFWS
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Secretary Jewell unveils the sign for Valle de Oro National Wildlife Refuge. Credit: USFWS
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Secretary Jewell Announces Completion of Valle de Oro National Wildlife Refuge, First Urban Refuge in Southwest

August 13, 2014

Standing with members of the New Mexico congressional delegation, Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell today announced that a diverse group of federal, state and local government partners and conservation groups, supported by the Land and Water Conservation Fund, have made it possible to acquire the lands needed to complete the 570-acre Valle de Oro National Wildlife Refuge, the Southwest’s first urban national wildlife refuge.

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Secretary Jewell unveils the sign for Valle de Oro National Wildlife Refuge. Credit: USFWS
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There is no solid information about the specific effects of climate change on wolverine denning habitat and how potential changes would likely affect this wolverine population. Credit: Roy Anderson
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Service Determines Wolverine Does Not Warrant Endangered Species Act Protection

August 13, 2014

Using the best-available science, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has determined the North American wolverine should not be listed as a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). Climate change is real, but its effect on the wolverine is unclear. To that end, the Service will continue working on wolverine conservation with state partners and monitor the species for any change that might indicate a need for ESA protection.

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There is no solid information about the specific effects of climate change on wolverine denning habitat and how potential changes would likely affect this wolverine population. Credit: Roy Anderson
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Hunter. Credit: Pat Hagan / USFWS
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Service Proposes Liberal Waterfowl Hunting Season Frameworks

August 12, 2014

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service proposes liberal hunting season lengths and bag limits for the upcoming 2014-15 late waterfowl seasons. States will select their individual seasons from within the federal frameworks that establish the earliest beginning and latest ending dates and the maximum season length and bag limits. According to the Service’s 2014 Waterfowl Population Status Report, population estimates for most species of ducks remained strong for this breeding season.

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Hunter. Credit: Pat Hagan / USFWS
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