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016 Saving Endangered Species Youth Art Contest Grand Prize Winner by Miles Yun. Credit: Courtesy of the Endangered Species Coalition.
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Kids! Get in Touch with Nature Through the Saving Endangered Species Youth Art Contest

February 2, 2017

Protecting nature is critical to keeping our planet thriving for future generations. What better way to do that than by engaging school children, in grades K through 12, to put their imaginative skills to work for wildlife in the 2017 Saving Endangered Species Youth Art Contest. It is organized by the Service, Endangered Species Coalition, Association of Zoos and Aquariums and International Child Art Foundation. The deadline is March 1, 

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016 Saving Endangered Species Youth Art Contest Grand Prize Winner by Miles Yun. Credit: Courtesy of the Endangered Species Coalition.
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Why did a large-winged bird leave such a deep impression in the snow at Tamarac National Wildlife Refuge in Minnesota? Credit: Lee Kensinger / USFWS
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Who Goes There?

February 1, 2017

Even if an animal stays out of sight, you can often find clear signs of its presence by its tracks and imprints in snow. These prints may reveal clues to an animal’s size, diet, gait and habits. Some tracks and prints tell stories of struggle and survival.

Snow Tracks Photo Essay »»

Why did a large-winged bird leave such a deep impression in the snow at Tamarac National Wildlife Refuge in Minnesota? Credit: Lee Kensinger / USFWS
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Sea turtles are killed for their eggs, shells, skin and meat. Credit: NOAA
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Travel Industry Joins Service and Partners to Fight Wildlife Trafficking

January 18, 2017

The travel and tourism industry is working with the Service and other partners to fight wildlife trafficking. The effort, which includes the Adventure Travel Trade Association, American Society for Travel Agents and Cruise Lines International Association, will help travelers recognize and avoid purchasing illegal wildlife products.

News Release »»

Be Informed. Buy Informed. A Guide for Travelers »»

Wallet-size Guide for Travelers »»

Sea turtles are killed for their eggs, shells, skin and meat. Credit: NOAA
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Regional Director Tom Melius with Congresswoman Debbie Dingell, former Congressman John Dingell Jr. and Refuge Manager John Hartig. Credit: Melissa Clark / USFWS
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Refuge Visitor Center to Honor Conservation Giant – former Congressman John Dingell

January 17, 2017

An under-construction visitor center at Detroit River International Wildlife Refuge will be named after former Congressman John D. Dingell Jr. “Congressman Dingell made huge advances for conservation on a continental scale. I’m honored to dedicate this building as the John D. Dingell Jr. Visitor Center,” said Regional Director Tom Melius. 

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Regional Director Tom Melius with Congresswoman Debbie Dingell, former Congressman John Dingell Jr. and Refuge Manager John Hartig. Credit: Melissa Clark / USFWS
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A bald eagle at Lower Klamath National Wildlife Refuge along the California-Oregon border. Credit: George Gentry / USFWS
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Eagles Across America

January 17, 2017

Half a century ago, the bald eagle was in danger of extinction. Habitat loss, illegal shooting and the pesticide DDT had decimated populations in the lower 48. But conservation actions under the Endangered Species Act, the end of DDT use, and actions taken by the public have helped lead a remarkable recovery.

Photo Essay on the Grand Bird » »»

A bald eagle at Lower Klamath National Wildlife Refuge along the California-Oregon border. Credit: George Gentry / USFWS
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A male polar bear walks on pack ice near the open water. Credit: Eric Regehr / USFWS
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Conservation of an Arctic Icon

January 13, 2017

The rapid loss of its sea-ice habitat is jeopardizing the future of the polar bear, and its fate will be determined by our willingness and ability to address climate change. While the international community grapples with that long-term challenge, the Conservation Management Plan for the polar bear, developed by U.S. government agencies, native communities, private organizations, scientists and subsistence hunters, outlines actions to improve the polar bear's immediate chances of surviving in the wild.

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Conservation Management Plan »»

Questions and Answers »»

A male polar bear walks on pack ice near the open water. Credit: Eric Regehr / USFWS
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An almost otherworldly array of rainbow-colored fish, plants and corals inhabit reefs within Papah?naumoku?kea Marine National Monument in the Pacific Ocean. Credit: James Watt
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'Hope Spots' in the Ocean

January 13, 2017

The ocean covers almost three-quarters of the Earth's surface and contains about 97 percent of the planet's water. We are just beginning to understand how the ocean's creatures are interconnected with one another and with us. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service cooperatively manages five marine national monuments that conserve ocean habitat, remote islands and atolls for the benefit of marine life – and people.

Photo Essay »»

An almost otherworldly array of rainbow-colored fish, plants and corals inhabit reefs within Papah?naumoku?kea Marine National Monument in the Pacific Ocean. Credit: James Watt
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Students learn about native plant and animal food chains. Credit: Lisa Cox / USFWS
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Immigrant Children Connect with Nature in Their New Home

January 13, 2017

With a Schoolyard Habitat in California, the Service and many volunteers and partners are helping children, mostly from war-torn countries such as Iraq and Syria, blossom into confident young girls and boys. 

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Students learn about native plant and animal food chains. Credit: Lisa Cox / USFWS
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Monarchs will benefit from habitat protection across the nation. Credit: Tom Koerner / USFWS
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Federal Partnership Encourages Monarch Butterfly Conservation on Agricultural Lands

January 13, 2017

The monarch butterfly is a new national priority species of Working Lands for Wildlife, a partnership between the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Natural Resources Conservation Service and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. The collaboration aims to help species recover by working with agricultural producers to make wildlife-friendly improvements on their farms, ranches and forests. Assistance is available to producers in Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Ohio, Oklahoma, Texas and Wisconsin. 

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Monarchs will benefit from habitat protection across the nation. Credit: Tom Koerner / USFWS
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Rusty patched bumble bee. Credit: Photo courtesy of Christy Stewart
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Rusty Patched Bumble Bee Listed as Endangered

January 11, 2017

Just 20 years ago, the rusty patched bumble bee was a common sight across 28 states from Connecticut to South Dakota. But the species, now balancing precariously on the brink of extinction, has become the first bumble bee that the Fish and Wildlife Service has declared endangered. Like other bees, rusty patched bumble bees pollinate many plants, including economically important crops such as tomatoes, cranberries and peppers. Each year, insects, mostly bees, provide pollination services valued at an estimated $3 billion in the United States.

News Release »»

Rusty patched bumble bee. Credit: Photo courtesy of Christy Stewart
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Snow geese at Sacramento National Wildlife Refuge in California. Credit: Courtesy of Barbara Rich
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Super Bird Fests at National Wildlife Refuges!

January 5, 2017

Looking for a special bird to add to your life list? Brand new to birding and just thrill to the sight of thousands of migrating birds? Bird festivals beckon you to national wildlife refuges throughout the year and from coast to coast. Many festivals coincide with spring or fall migration. Here are some great refuge bird festivals to catch in 2017. The National Wildlife Refuge System protects natural habitat for America's treasured wildlife species.

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Snow geese at Sacramento National Wildlife Refuge in California. Credit: Courtesy of Barbara Rich
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he Lesser long-nosed bat is an important pollinator of cacti in the American Southwest. Credit: Courtesy of Bat Conservation International, Bruce D. Taubert.
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Successful Recovery of Lesser Long-Nosed Bat Assisted by Citizen Science, Improved Research and Bat-friendly Tequila

January 5, 2017

Although many species of bat across the U.S. are not faring well, the lesser long-nosed bat is bucking that trend. Due to a host of traditional, and not so traditional, conservation efforts, the lesser long-nosed bat has rebounded from near extinction in the late 1980s to being the first bat species proposed for delisting under the Endangered Species Act. The success exemplifies the power, flexibility, and ingenuity that the act inspires. 

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he Lesser long-nosed bat is an important pollinator of cacti in the American Southwest. Credit: Courtesy of Bat Conservation International, Bruce D. Taubert.
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The Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation is awarded $1 million to protect 72.40 acres of coastal saltmarsh and adjacent uplands along the shoreline of the Allens Pond Estuary. Credit: Courtesy of Massachusetts DCR
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Importance of Resilient Coastal Wetlands to Conservation, Recreation Economy, and Coastal Communities Recognized by $17 Million in Grants to States

January 5, 2017

Over $17 million will be awarded by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to 20 projects in 10 coastal states to protect, restore or enhance more than 13,000 acres of coastal wetlands and adjacent upland habitats under the National Coastal Wetlands Conservation Grant Program. State and local governments, private landowners, conservation groups and other partners will contribute over $20 million in additional funds to these projects.

News Release »»

2017 Coastal Wetlands Grants Project List »»

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The Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation is awarded $1 million to protect 72.40 acres of coastal saltmarsh and adjacent uplands along the shoreline of the Allens Pond Estuary. Credit: Courtesy of Massachusetts DCR
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Illegal ivory carvings that were seized by U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Law Enforcement special agents and destroyed in 2013. Credit: Kate Miyamoto / USFWS
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China's Decision to Halt the Ivory Trade Is a Game-Changer

January 5, 2017

In a blog on the Huffington Post, Service Director Dan Ashe praises and thanks China for its "bold and consequential step" forward in pledging to end the commercial sale and processing of ivory and ivory products by the end of the year. While elephants remain in jeopardy, China's move will cut demand, which has been shown to be a major factor driving the illegal slaughter of elephants. The United States closed its ivory market last year. 

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Related: U.S. and Sudan Talk Wildlife Trafficking »»

Video: U.S. ban: What can I do with my ivory? »»

Illegal ivory carvings that were seized by U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Law Enforcement special agents and destroyed in 2013. Credit: Kate Miyamoto / USFWS
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"I am proud of our on-the-ground conservation actions for monarchs and other pollinators. It is catalyzing massive conservation effort across North America," says Service Director Dan Ashe. Credit: Eileen Hornbaker / USFWS
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330,000 Acres Restored or Enhanced for Monarchs; Number Blows Past Goal

January 4, 2017

The numbers are in for 2016, and they're impressive. The Fish and Wildlife Service worked to restore and enhance more than 330,000 acres in 2016 for monarchs and other pollinators. That exceeds the goal the Department of Interior set for us of restoring or enhancing 320,000 acres of habitat by end of fiscal year 2017.

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Save the Monarch Butterfly »»

"I am proud of our on-the-ground conservation actions for monarchs and other pollinators. It is catalyzing massive conservation effort across North America," says Service Director Dan Ashe. Credit: Eileen Hornbaker / USFWS
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