A National Wildlife Refuge Complex is an administrative grouping of two or more refuges, wildlife management areas or other refuge conservation areas that are primarily managed from a central office location. Refuges are grouped into a complex structure because they occur in a similar ecological region, such as a watershed or specific habitat type, and have a related purpose and management needs. Typically, a project leader or complex manager oversees the general management of all refuges within the complex and refuge managers are responsible for operations at specific refuges. Supporting staff, composed of administrative, law enforcement, refuge manager, biological, fire, and maintenance professionals, are centrally located and support all refuges within the complex.
The Bowdoin National Wildlife Refuge Complex is within the Prairie Pothole Region of the Great Plains. The refuge complex covers 84,724 acres in north-central Montana and spreads across Blaine, Hill, Phillips, and Valley Counties. With its headquarters near the town of Malta, the refuge complex comprises of the following units:
On August 31, 2011 the U.S. fish & Wildlife Service finalized a comprehensive conservation plan (CCP) for the Bowdoin NWR Complex to provide a foundation for the management and use of these lands for the next 15 years. The purpose of the final CCP is to identify the role the Bowdoin NWR Complex plays in support of the mission of the National Wildlife Refuge System and to provide long-term guidance for managing programs and activities. The CCP specifies the goals and objectives necessary to achieve the vision and purposes of the Bowdoin NWR Complex. The CCP is needed to help the Service achieve the following:
Sustaining the Nation's fish and wildlife resources is a task that can be accomplished only through the combined efforts of governments, businesses, and private citizens.
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Rare sight of a partial albino great horned owl on the Bowdoin National Wildlife Refuge.