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Stories from the Home Page

Gray wolf. Credit: Gary Kramer / USFWS
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Removal of Wyoming’s Gray Wolves from Endangered Species List Final Step in Historic Recovery Across Northern Rockies

April 26, 2017

Recovery of the gray wolf in the Northern Rocky Mountains is one of our nation’s greatest conservation success stories. Today, that success was re-affirmed with the filing by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service of a notice again delisting the species in the state of Wyoming. Wolves have already been delisted throughout the rest of the Northern Rockies population. The Service will continue to monitor the population for the next five years to ensure recovery criteria are met. The Northern Rocky Mountain population as a whole continues to be self-sustaining, with numbers well above federal management objectives.

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Gray wolf. Credit: Gary Kramer / USFWS
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The 2017-2018 National Junior Duck Stamp art by Isaac Schreiber, 12, from Duffield, Va., with trumpeter swans on acrylic. Credit: USFWS
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Secretary Zinke and USFWS Announce Winner of National Junior Duck Stamp Art Contest

April 21, 2017

Today, U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced a talented young artist from Duffield, Va., took top honors at the National Junior Duck Stamp Art Contest. A pair of trumpeter swans painted by 12-year-old Isaac Schreiber will grace the 2017-2018 Junior Duck Stamp, which raises funds to educate and engage our nation's youth in wildlife and wetlands conservation, and outdoor recreation.

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The 2017-2018 National Junior Duck Stamp art by Isaac Schreiber, 12, from Duffield, Va., with trumpeter swans on acrylic. Credit: USFWS
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Through activities ranging from family workshops to summer explorations for kids,Tamarac Discovery Center – built with the fundraising acumen of the Friends of Tamarac National Wildlife Refuge – connects a Minnesota community with natural resources and Tamarac National Wildlife Refuge. Credit: Denise Warweg
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Friends Better Their Communities

April 19, 2017

Nonprofit Friends organizations are the helping hands of national wildlife refuges and national fish hatcheries. Some 200 Friends organizations work on behalf of national wildlife refuges. Thirty-three other groups work hand-in-hand with national fish hatcheries. As they work on behalf of conservation, they are improving your community, one project at a time.

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Through activities ranging from family workshops to summer explorations for kids,Tamarac Discovery Center – built with the fundraising acumen of the Friends of Tamarac National Wildlife Refuge – connects a Minnesota community with natural resources and Tamarac National Wildlife Refuge. Credit: Denise Warweg
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Samples from a tricolored bat, like the one pictured, tested positive for white-nose syndrome. Credit: Jena Donnell/ODWC
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Eastern Oklahoma Bat Tests Positive for White-nose Syndrome

April 18, 2017

White-nose syndrome has been confirmed for the first time in Oklahoma, making it the 31st state with the deadly disease that affects hibernating bats. The fungus that causes white-nose syndrome was first detected in the state in 2015, but at that time bats did not appear to be sick. The disease has killed millions of bats since first being found in New York in the winter of 2006-2007. Bats play important ecological roles – including pest removal.

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Samples from a tricolored bat, like the one pictured, tested positive for white-nose syndrome. Credit: Jena Donnell/ODWC
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Each year the Service works with the State of Hawaii, NOAA and volunteers to collect tons of marine debris from the atolls and throughout Papah?naumoku?kea Marine National Monument. Credit: NOAA
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Taking Out the Trash

April 14, 2017

The Fish and Wildlife Service and partners recently removed more than 100,000 pounds (that's 50 tons!) of marine debris that had been collected over the last six years from the reefs and beaches of Kure Atoll State Wildlife Sanctuary and Midway Atoll National Wildlife Refuge and Battle of Midway National Memorial in the Pacific. The debris, a potentially lethal entanglement and ingestion hazard for wildlife, was transported to Honolulu and will be incinerated to produce electricity.

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Each year the Service works with the State of Hawaii, NOAA and volunteers to collect tons of marine debris from the atolls and throughout Papah?naumoku?kea Marine National Monument. Credit: NOAA
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As part of her work, Ann Froschauer sometimes gets to explore bat caves up close and personally. Credit: USFWS
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Bats: 'The Coolest Mammals on Earth'

April 13, 2017

Bats may seem scary sometimes, but they are very interestintg. And they are important to all of us. So, to help celebrate National Bat Appreciation Day this Monday, April 17, we've asked our U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service colleague Ann Froschauer a few questions about bats.

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As part of her work, Ann Froschauer sometimes gets to explore bat caves up close and personally. Credit: USFWS
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Some eggs, like this common murre egg at Selawik National Wildlife Refuge in Alaska, are pyriform: pear-shaped and pointed. Credit: Brandon Saito / USFWS
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Eggs-cellent!

April 5, 2017

Spring is here, and eggs are sitting in nests at national wildlife refuges from coast to coast. Did you know that the shape of an egg can keep it from rolling away? Learn more about the distinctive attributes of bird eggs.

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Some eggs, like this common murre egg at Selawik National Wildlife Refuge in Alaska, are pyriform: pear-shaped and pointed. Credit: Brandon Saito / USFWS
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Miami blue butterfly. Credit: Molly McCarter / USFWS
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DOI Announces $3.74 Million to 12 States for Species Recovery

March 30, 2017

More than $3.7 million in funding will support nine projects on 12 national wildlife refuges across 12 states to help recover some of the nation’s most at-risk species on or near national wildlife refuges. Species to benefit from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s Cooperative Recovery Initiative program include the Miami blue butterfly, ocelots, Puritan tiger beetles, masked bobwhite and spectacled eiders. Since 2013, the Service has funded 66 projects for nearly $27 million through the CRI. 

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Miami blue butterfly. Credit: Molly McCarter / USFWS
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A Florida manatee at Three Sisters Springs in Crystal River National Wildlife Refuge, a critical wintering habitat for manatees. Credit: Carol Grant
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Manatee Downlisted from Endangered to Threatened; All Existing Federal Protections Remain in Place

March 30, 2017

Thanks to conservation partnerships inspired by the Endangered Species Act, the manatee is no longer in danger of extinction throughout all or a significant portion of its range, and is being downlisted from endangered to threatened. Diverse actions by the Service, Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission, industry, conservation groups and others have helped protect manatee habitat and wintering areas, with notable population increases in recent years.

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A Florida manatee at Three Sisters Springs in Crystal River National Wildlife Refuge, a critical wintering habitat for manatees. Credit: Carol Grant
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Summer camp at refuges is all about nature discovery. Campers at the Prairie Wetlands Learning Center in Minnesota try wearing duckweed. Credit: USFWS
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Summer Camp on National Wildlife Refuges

March 29, 2017

Summer's still months off, but it's not too soon to sign your kids up for a camp they'll long remember. Summer day camps on national wildlife refuges spark a sense of natural wonder and give youngsters a chance to learn new outdoor skills. 

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Summer camp at refuges is all about nature discovery. Campers at the Prairie Wetlands Learning Center in Minnesota try wearing duckweed. Credit: USFWS
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Bison gather at the river at Fort Niobrara National Wildlife Refuge in north-central Nebraska. Credit: Phyllis Cooper / USFWS
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114 Years Young: Refuge System Celebrates Birthday

March 22, 2017

Since its establishment 114 years ago, the National Wildlife Refuge System has protected and restored a world of wildlife, and has offered an unparalleled system of public lands that provides access to the great outdoors to all citizens. President Teddy Roosevelt created the first national wildlife refuge on March 14, 1903, at Pelican Island, Florida. Today, the Refuge System is the world's largest network of conservation lands and waters, managing more than 850 million acres, with at least one national wildlife refuge in every state and U.S. territory. 

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Bison gather at the river at Fort Niobrara National Wildlife Refuge in north-central Nebraska. Credit: Phyllis Cooper / USFWS
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Fishing is permitted in 12 public fishing areas at J. Clark Salyer National Wildlife Refuge in North Dakota. Credit: Gary Eslinger / USFWS
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Gone Fishing

March 22, 2017

Anglers are a secretive bunch, keeping their favorite fishing spots to themselves. Not us. We’re proud to say that more than 270 national wildlife refuges provide wonderful fishing spots; and we want everyone to know.

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Fishing is permitted in 12 public fishing areas at J. Clark Salyer National Wildlife Refuge in North Dakota. Credit: Gary Eslinger / USFWS
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While visitors watch, an expert tags a monarch butterfly at a fall monarch festival at a national wildlife refuge. Credit: USFWS
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Adventures in Monarch Tagging and Other Offbeat Nature Fun

March 17, 2017

Like your nature a bit out of the ordinary? Some upcoming national wildlife refuge events fill the bill. It’s not a matter of replacing bird walks and nature tours. Those will never go out of fashion. But sometimes you’re up for something a little different. 

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While visitors watch, an expert tags a monarch butterfly at a fall monarch festival at a national wildlife refuge. Credit: USFWS
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Service Wildlife Inspectors, both two- and four-legged, participate in Operation Thunderbird. Credit: USFWS
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Service, Partner Nations to Wildlife Traffickers: There's Nowhere to Hide

March 9, 2017

Operation Thunderbird, a global anti-wildlife trafficking initiative, recently turned a bright spotlight on the alarming depth and breadth of the planet's wildlife poaching problem. Many seizures of illicit wildlife products were made by U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service law enforcement officers, demonstrating the significant role our nation plays in the problem of wildlife trafficking. 

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Service Wildlife Inspectors, both two- and four-legged, participate in Operation Thunderbird. Credit: USFWS
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Seaborne plastic debris litters a beach on Laysan Island in Papah?naumoku?kea Marine National Monument in the Pacific. Credit: Susan White / USFWS
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Oceans of Trash

March 1, 2017

Marine debris is a global problem that threatens wildlife – and people, too. It's estimated that 8 million tons of debris enter the ocean each year, outpacing efforts to remove it. Making a real dent in the problem will require action by all of us.

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Seaborne plastic debris litters a beach on Laysan Island in Papah?naumoku?kea Marine National Monument in the Pacific. Credit: Susan White / USFWS
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