Refuge conservation plans are called Comprehensive Conservation Plans, or CCPs. The purpose of a CCP is to specify a management direction for the refuge for the next 15 years.
The goals, objectives, and strategies for improving refuge conditions—including the types of habitat we will provide, partnership opportunities, and management actions needed to achieve desired conditions – are described in the CCP. The Service’s preferred alternative for managing the refuge and its effects on the human environment, are described in the CCP as well.
To support and fulfill the mission of the Refuge System, the
National Wildlife Refuge Improvement Act (1997) required that the
Service will develop a CCP for each national
wildlife refuge in the Refuge System. To meet this requirement, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
has started work on a CCP for the National Elk
Refuge, with completion scheduled for 2014. A draft plan and accompanying environmental document (as required by the
National Environmental Policy Act) will describe management alternatives
considered and their effects on the environment.
This 15-year plan will provide long-range guidance and
management direction for all of the refuge's programs. The plan will outline a
vision statement and supporting goals, objectives, and strategies. It will be a
"living" document that is updated every 15 years.
The Bison and Elk Management Plan, completed in 2007, provides
goals, objectives, and strategies for managing bison and elk on the National Elk
Refuge and in Grand Teton National Park for the next 15 years. Therefore, the
CCP will not address bison and elk management on the
refuge, but will address all other aspects of refuge management including
migratory birds, threatened and endangered species, visitor use, and cultural
A comprehensive web site on the National Elk Refuge's
Comprehensive Conservation Plan can be found at www.fws.gov/mountain-prairie/planning/ccp/wy/ner/ner.html
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Elk aren't the only species of wildlife you may see on the National Elk Refuge.