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U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Dedicates Land to “Duck Cop”

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

November 13, 2002

Contact:
Kash Schriefer, 318/325-1735
Tom MacKenzie, 404/679-7291


U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Special Agent Joe Oliveros has left a reputation and a legacy. To honor that legacy, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service today dedicated an 1,000-acre area east of Mer Rouge, LA to his memory. During the 1980s and early 1990s, Oliveros often patrolled the land that the Service acquired from the Farm Services Agency in 1991. Because the area attracts thousands of wintering waterfowl, it is known as one of the best duck hunting areas in northeast Louisiana, attracting both avid sportsmen and duck poachers.

“We are proud to dedicate this land, rich with waterfowl, to Joe Oliveros, who was one of the Service’s best wildlife law enforcement agents,” said Sam D. Hamilton, the Service’s Southeast Regional Director. “The duck poachers he apprehended called him “Duck Cop,” now that epithet indicates honor and respect.”

Joe Oliveros worked for the Service for about 29 years before cancer claimed him in April 2001. The area being dedicated to him was once poor quality farmland that the Service has planted back to bottomland hardwood trees. The Louisiana black bear, federally listed as threatened roams the area, and teal, mallard, wood duck, pintail, gadwall, and many other duck species winter there.

Commissioned as a Service Special Agent in 1981, Oliveros won the Guy Bradley Award in 1999, the highest recognition a wildlife law enforcement agent can receive. The annual award is given to enforcement agents who display exceptional leadership, dedication, and skill in their field. In 1994, the Southeastern Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies honored Oliveros as Conservation Officer of the Year.

After working several years as a Service Refuge Manager and Officer in the Southeast, Oliveros began his career as a Special Agent in New Orleans, then transferred to a single-agent duty station in Monroe. Throughout northern Louisiana, he enforced laws protecting migratory waterfowl and educated the public about responsible hunting and wildlife conservation. In 1994, Oliveros transferred to Jacksonville, FL to work in a two-man law enforcement office. From Florida’s Panhandle to Lake Okechobee, he was effective in reducing the illegal hunting of ducks and doves. He also protected manatees, federally listed as endangered, from boat collisions by apprehending boaters who exceeded posted manatee protection speed limits. Throughout his career, Oliveros served as an instructor at basic schools for new Service Special Agents and refuge officers.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is the principal federal agency responsible for conserving, protecting and enhancing fish, wildlife and plants and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people. The Service manages the 95-million-acre National Wildlife Refuge System which encompasses nearly 540 national wildlife refuges, thousands of small wetlands and other special management areas. It also operates 66 national fish hatcheries, 64 fishery resource offices and 78 ecological services field stations. The agency enforces federal wildlife laws, administers the Endangered Species Act, manages migratory bird populations, restores nationally significant fisheries, conserves and restores wildlife habitat such as wetlands, and helps foreign governments with their conservation efforts. It also oversees the Federal Aid program that distributes hundreds of millions of dollars in excise taxes on fishing and hunting equipment to state fish and wildlife agencies.


Fact Sheet for Joe Oliveros
Joe Oliveros holding ducks Joe Oliveros with dead ducks
Click on photo for a 300 dpi image



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Atlanta, GA 30345

Phone: 404/679-7289 Fax: 404/679-7286

2001 News Releases

   
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