Fish and Aquatic Conservation
Although most hatchery lands and outdoor spaces have remained open for the public to enjoy, we ask that you Recreate Responsibly.
Check individual hatchery operating status before visiting.

Since 1871 we have been working to conserve, restore and enhance
fish and other aquatic resources for the continuing benefit of the American people.

Explore 150 years of aquatic conservation

Recent News

A young child looks at a fish he is holding. A child next to him smiles and points at the camera.
Warm Springs NFH staff and partners started working before the sun came up to safely load and transfer 348,000 young spring Chinook salmon during the extreme heatwave that hit the Pacific Northwest in late June 2021. Photo by Katie Royer / USFWS

Fisheries Professionals, Partners Work Together to Save Salmon from Extreme Heat

July 2021 | By: Brent Lawrence, Public Affairs Officer, USFWS Columbia Pacific Northwest

Mike Clark and a team of fisheries professionals watched the weather forecast for late June and knew it meant serious problems for the more than 7 million salmon being reared in the Columbia River Gorge National Fish Hatcheries.

Each day the weather forecast for the Pacific Northwest brought increasingly dire predictions. What started as 104 degrees soon became a forecast of 108 degrees. Then 111 … 115 …. 117 degrees.

The numbers were unfathomable for the normally temperate Pacific Northwest. If they came true, they would exceed previous all-time record highs for many areas by almost 10%. Clark, manager of the Columbia River Gorge National Fish Hatchery Complex, and the staff knew it would have a pronounced impact on the water temperature and the juvenile salmon at hatcheries in the complex.

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The Face of Fishing: Younger, more diverse, and supporting conservation by the billions.

Fishing is more than a hobby. For many, it represents a way of life, a connection to wildlife, and a sustainable way to support your family and community. Through fishing, we have the opportunity to connect with nature and the world around us.

People who fish have always been a driving force for conservation because they understand that fishing depends on clean water, sustainably managed resources, and protected habitat. They lead the way in protecting waterways from invasive species and promoting responsible fishing practices. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service works closely with state fish and wildlife agencies, communities, and partners to ensure that the nation’s fisheries are safe, productive, and sustainable for everyone to enjoy.

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A young child looks at a fish he is holding. A child next to him smiles and points at the camera.
Programs like the Anchorage Urban Fishing program break down barriers by helping participants overcome their fear of the outdoor.
Photo by Katrina Leibich/USFWS

How to Break Up with Your Goldfish

Goldfish can seem like the ideal low maintenance pet. But if you are no longer able to care for your them, it can be difficult to know what to do with your fishy friend.

Many people think that letting their goldfish loose into a local pond or river is a harmless and humane way to get rid of them. But that’s not the case. When goldfish are released in to local waterways they become an invasive species that can live for up to 25 years and do real harm to the water quality and wild fish communities.

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A person stands in front of a lake and holds a large goldfish up to the camera.
A 14-inch goldfish removed from the Niagara River. Photo by USFWS.

New Pilot Project at Leavenworth National Fish Hatchery Thinks Outside the Raceway

July 2021 | By: Amanda Smith, USFWS Columbia Pacific Northwest

Icicle Creek is an iconic stream in central Washington State that runs through the heart of the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest into the Wenatchee River, providing life-giving resources to the surrounding communities. From supporting domestic water supply and agricultural irrigation to providing habitat for wildlife and recreation for people, Icicle Creek is in high demand. This hardworking waterway also provides water for Leavenworth National Fish Hatchery, ensuring the creation of millions of salmon annually.

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Icicle Creek flows down from the Cascade Mountain range to join the Wenatchee River in Leavenworth, WA.
Icicle Creek flows down from the Cascade Mountain range to join the Wenatchee River in Leavenworth, WA. Credit:

FAC Strategic Plan FY2016-2020

thumbnail image of the cover of the FAC Strategic Plan

Get to Know Your Facilities

map of 12 Interior regions

Let's Go Fishing - Catch the Fun

photo of people fishing off of a pier

Expert Tips to Hook the
Perfect Fish
One adult and two girls fishing from a boat.

Here’s a roundup of some of our favorite fishing tips from the experts who raise them.

Responsible Fishing Tips for New Anglers
Three kids and an adult fish from a pier.

Find a place to fish near you!  Plan your next fishing trip at