National Wildlife Refuge System

Discarded plastic fills the stomach of a dead albatross chick photographed on remote Midway Atoll National Wildlife Refuge. The Fish and Wildlife Service will take part in a spring conference on the growing problem of marine debris.
Discarded plastic fills the stomach of a dead albatross chick photographed on remote Midway Atoll National Wildlife Refuge. The Fish and Wildlife Service will take part in a spring conference on the growing problem of marine debris.
Credit: Chris Jordon

Wild Angles: News From the National Wildlife Refuge System

News for January 2011

Wild Angles is a reliable source of news about environmental issues, initiatives and events in the National Wildlife Refuge System, the world's premier system of public lands and waters set aside to conserve America's fish, wildlife and plants.

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Tracking Birds and Bats in the Gulf of Maine  In several large-scale efforts, Maine Coastal Islands National Wildlife Refuge is monitoring the flight and feeding habits of birds and bats to help guide the placement of ocean energy projects, better predict the impacts of climate change and help the refuge prioritize habitat enhancement projects.

Marine Debris Threat Grows  Along coasts worldwide, marine debris fouls beaches and threatens wildlife that swallow or get tangled in discarded nets and floating bits of plastic, metal and glass. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is working with international partners to address the growing problem. In March the Service will take part in an international conference on marine debris in Hawaii that it hopes will inspire follow-up action.

A Bird Count Just for Kids  More kids are getting in on the Christmas Bird Count, a wildlife survey and citizen-science project that takes place worldwide and on many national wildlife refuges in January. Some refuges are reporting success with a new offshoot of the traditional National Audubon event — the Christmas/Winter Bird Count for Kids, aimed at youngsters, age 8 to 18.

On a Refuge, a Real Relic  Charles M. Russell National Wildlife Refuge in Montana is renowned as a dinosaur fossil site, but the discovery of a prehistoric sea creature called a plesiosaur on the refuge has scientists particularly intrigued.

Oceans Conference to Spotlight Gulf Cleanup  Cindy Dohner, Southeast Regional Director of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, will discuss the natural resource damage assessment process and restoration challenges after the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico as a panelist at "Our Changing Oceans" national conference in January in Washington, D.C.

Fish and Wildlife Service Hires More Youth   Tyler Hotten, 18, a high school senior in Underwood, North Dakota, got his wish this summer: a chance to work outdoors. After two months of mowing, weed trimming, goose banding and other labor at Audubon National Wildlife Refuge, he also came away with something more: an interest in a career in wildlife conservation. "If you like being outside, it's the job for you," he says.

That's just what the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service likes to hear. The Service increased youth employment more than 50 percent in fiscal year 2010, exceeding the Department of the Interior's goals.

Outdoor Classroom Projects Win Funding   Fifteen projects that promote the use of national wildlife refuges as outdoor classrooms will receive funding in 2011 from the Nature of Learning program, a federal-private consortium co-sponsored by the National Wildlife Refuge System.

Refuge Events Calendar   Here is a sampling of upcoming refuge events:

Archive of Past Stories

Wild Angles is published monthly by the Refuge System, part of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service under the Department of the Interior.

For information about items in the tip sheet, contact:
Martha Nudel, 703-358-1858
Claire Cassel, 703-358-2357

Last updated: January 10, 2011