The Big Dry Arm Spring Storm in the Great Basin Red Cliffs Desert Tortoise Reserve March Morning on the Platte River After a Spring Storm in the Great Basin Hunting Upland Birds at Kingsbury Lake Waterfowl Production Area Sandhill Migration on the Platte River Badlands Sunrise The Green River at Ouray NWR North Park Lupines Moab Sunset
Partners for Fish & Wildlife
Mountain-Prairie Region
Graphic button showing the 8 state mountain prairie region

Partners for Fish & Wildlife (PFW)

 

Background and History of PFW | Role of PFW in the Service | Support for PFW from Other Groups | Participating Landowners | Contact Us | Open / Close All


Background and History »

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Aerial photo of wetlands in Wyoming. Credit: USFWS

Aerial photo of wetlands in Wyoming. Credit: USFWS.

Partners for Fish and Wildlife evolved from early-1970's concerns about low waterfowl breeding populations and annual production in the north-central United States and southern prairie Canada. A formal attempt to define the waterfowl recruitment problem and consider solutions occurred at a meeting called by the Province of Manitoba in January 1974. Following that meeting, a committee led by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources developed a course of action.

A pilot program, the Mid-continent Waterfowl Management Unit, was established in western Minnesota. A steering committee of the Wildlife Management Institute, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service guided the effort.

The "Mid-Continent Project" had Four Goals:

  • Protect existing wetland habitat in private ownership
  • Create and/or restore wetland habitat on private land
  • Establish upland nesting cover on private land
  • Improve wetland and upland habitat on public land

Management activities were designed and field tested from 1978 through 1987 in a three county pilot area. In 1987, the "mid-continent project" was expanded by the Fish and Wildlife Service into an operational private lands habitat program (Partners for Wildlife) for application in every state.

The Region 6 Partners for Fish and Wildlife Program started in North Dakota in 1987 and has been expanded to all other Region 6 states since then. Partners for Fish and Wildlife's focus goes beyond waterfowl habitat.


Role of PFW in the Service »

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The Partners for Fish and Wildlife Program is a voluntary, landowner friendly, and results oriented approach to private lands fish and wildlife conservation that is proving its worth in all aspects of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's mission. For instance:


National Wildlife Refuge System Logo

National Wildlife Refuge System
The Partners Program is recognized as having a positive impact on the Service's National Wildlife Refuge System. The Program focuses on habitat projects within watersheds of National Wildlife Refuges and Waterfowl Production Areas, thereby amplifying refuge habitat benefits.

National Wildlife Refuges


North American Waterfowl Management Plan
North American Waterfowl Management Plan logoThe Partners Program got its start assisting with the implementation of the North American Waterfowl Management Plan. Today, the Partners Program continues to strongly support these efforts through wetland restoration and other habitat enhancement needs on private lands.

Contributing to the North American Waterfowl Management Plan


North American Bird Conservation Initiative logo.

North American Bird Conservation Initiative
The Partners Program works with all the bird conservation initiatives, to assist with integrated bird conservation, by providing private landowners with technical and financial assistance to maintain or restore priority habitats.

North American Bird Conservation Initiative


Fisheries program logo.

Fisheries Program
The Partners Program addresses habitat enhancement and restoration needs for riverine, stream, riparian, grassland, and forest habitat in support of the Service's Fisheries Program.

Conserving America's Fisheries


Endangered Species Habitat Recovery poster image.

Endangered Species Habitat Recovery
The Partners Program is recognized as an important habitat-based tool in endangered species recovery efforts. Through partnerships with private landowners, critical habitat for endangered species has been restored through the technical and financial assistance provided through the Partners Program.

Endangered Species Program


Endangered Species Habitat Recovery poster image.

Duck Stamps
Short-term private land agreements, easements, and fee-title acquisition are all part of an integrated habitat protection program. In many cases, short-term Partners Program agreements lead the way to permanent habitat protection with Duck Stamp funds.

Duck Stamp Program


Working with Native Americans
The Partners Program addresses the Service's Native American trust responsibilities by actively pursuing stream, riparian, wetland, and grassland restoration projects with numerous tribal entities in Region 6.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has "trust responsibility" to assist trabal entities in managing fish and wildlife resources on their reservations. This includes offering support to restore and enhance reservation fish and wildlife habitats.

Partners for Fish and Wildlife has taken trust responsibility seriously. Biologists are currently working with tribal governments, members, and landowners on reservations in Montana, Nebraska, South Dakota, Utah, and Wyoming. A significant, but intangible, value of this effort is renewed trust between tribes and the Service.

"In working with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe can truly say that it has been a pleasure. This partnership . . . has proven itself to be very good for all parties involved. It is our sincere hope that the tribe and Fish and Wildlife may continue in this outstanding relationship for many years to come."

Gregg J. Bourland
Tribal Chairman


Support for PFW from Other Groups »

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Photo of a tour group. Credit: Tim Christian, Kansas Grazing Lands Coalition.

Photo of a tour group. Credit: Time Christian, Kansas Grazing Lands Coalition.

State, federal, tribal, and private conservation organizations use Partners for Fish and Wildlife to achieve common habitat objectives. Partners' support will remain high as long as high quality habitat projects are produced with a minimum of red tape and delay.


"Partners for Wildlife has been heralded as one of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's most accepted programs. It has turned adversaries into cooperators."

Matthew B. Connolly, Jr.
Former Executive Vice President

Ducks Unlimited, Inc.


"(Partners for Wildlife) does not increase federal land ownership, regulations or condemnations. It is one of the tools required for biodiversity and ecosystem management, in which agencies recognize their stake in the treatment of resources outside the boundaries of federal ownership, and which hinges on the cooperation among federal, state, local, and private interests in the management of ecosystems."

Jean Hocker, President
Land Trust Alliance
Washington, D.C.


"(The) Farm Bureau wants to conserve true functioning wetlands and Partners for Wildlife is a program that accomplishes this. The beauty of the program is that people go into it for all the right reasons. They want to leave a legacy to their children or grandchildren or enjoy the aesthetic values associated with wetlands. The fact that private landowners control their property is one of the true benefits of the program."

Mark Maslyn
Deputy Executive Director
Environment/Labor/Natural Resources
American Farm Bureau
Washington, D.C.


Participating Landowners »

Tony and Jamie Good discuss native prairie restoration. Credit: USFWS

Tony and Jamie Good discuss native prairie restoration. Credit: USFWS.

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The Partners for Fish and Wildlife Program is a voluntary private lands habitat restoration program. It is a cost-share program, rather than a grants program. Therefore, there is no request for proposals and the landowner does not need to fill out a grant application to receive financial or technical assistance on their ranch or farm.

Within the Mountain-Prairie Region, the Partners program works with hundreds of private landowners to develop projects that benefit fish and wildlife species, while also helping ranchers increase their bottom-line. The Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) can help improve grasslands, restore water quality, and reduce invasive species that compete with range production and health. This becomes a win-win for both the rancher and Service.


Contact Us »

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Regional Staff

Heather Johnson
Regional Private Lands Coordinator
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
134 Union Blvd., Suite 300
Lakewood, CO 80228
(303) 236-4316 office | (303) 594-8780 cell
heather_johnson@fws.gov

Dominic Barrett
Deputy Regional Private Lands Coordinator
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
134 Union Blvd., Suite 300
Lakewood, CO 80228
(303) 236-4341 office | (303) 968-9821 cell
dominic_barrett@fws.gov

State Coordinators

Bill Noonan | Colorado
Colorado PFW Program
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
134 Union Blvd., Suite 400
Lakewood, CO 80228
(303) 236-5462
bill_noonan@fws.gov

Mike Disney | Kansas
Kansas PFW Program
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
2609 Anderson Ave
Manhattan, KS 66502
(785) 539-3474 ext. 107
michael_disney@fws.gov

Greg Neudecker | Montana
Montana PFW Program
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
P.O. Box 66
Ovando, MT 59854
406-793-7400
greg_neudecker@fws.gov

Kenny Dinan | Nebraska
Nebraska PFW Program
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
9325 South Alda Road
Wood River, NE 68883
308-382-6468 ext. 214
kenny_dinan@fws.gov

Scott McLeod | North Dakota
North Dakota PFW Program
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
3425 Miriam Ave.
Bismarck, ND 58501
701-355-8526
scott_mcleod@fws.gov

Kurt Forman | South Dakota
South Dakota PFW Program
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
530 B Third Avenue
P.O. Box 247
Brookings, SD 57006
605-597-2500
kurt_forman@fws.gov

Karl Fleming | Utah
Utah PFW Program
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
2155 West Forest Street
Brigham City, UT 84302
435-734-6434
karl_fleming@fws.gov

Mark Hogan | Wyoming
Wyoming PFW Program
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
170 North First Street
Lander, WY 82520
307-332-8719
mark_j_hogan@fws.gov

 

The mission of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is working with Others to conserve, protect, and enhance fish, wildlife, plants and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American People.
Last modified: August 12, 2015
All Images Credit to and Courtesy of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Unless Specified Otherwise.
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