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Stories from the Home Page

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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Marine Debris Photo Essay »»

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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.

Ann's Story »»

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.

Photo Essay »»

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. 

Photo Essay »»

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.

Photo Essay »»

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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Photos »»

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.

Photo Essay »»

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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Secretary Ryan Zinke. Credit: Photo courtesy Scott Wilson
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Ryan Zinke Sworn In as 52nd Secretary of the Interior

March 1, 2017

Today, Ryan Zinke was confirmed and sworn in as the 52nd Secretary of the Interior. He was sworn in by Vice President Mike Pence at a ceremony in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building. Zinke is the first Montanan to serve as a cabinet secretary and also the first U.S. Navy SEAL in the cabinet. As Secretary of the Interior, Zinke leads an agency with more than 70,000 employees who serve as steward for 20 percent of the nation’s lands, including national parks, monuments and wildlife refuges, as well as other public lands.

News Release (DOI) »»

Secretary Ryan Zinke. Credit: Photo courtesy Scott Wilson
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Monarch butterflies overwintering near Santa Barbara, Calif. Credit: Lisa Hupp / USFWS
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Monarchs Still Need Your Help

February 24, 2017

Conservation efforts count now more than ever for monarch butterflies. The eastern population of monarchs overwintering in Mexico continues to decline due to severe storms and habitat loss. Numbers also were down at historically large sites for populations of western monarchs. From entire nations to individuals, everyone can play a role in helping reverse these declines. 

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Monarch butterflies overwintering near Santa Barbara, Calif. Credit: Lisa Hupp / USFWS
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Girl Scouts gather before helping plant 80 native plants to aid the monarch butterfly at San Diego Bay National Wildlife Refuge. Credit: Kayt Jonsson / USFWS
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Connecting Our Constituencies

February 24, 2017

To remain relevant in a changing world, the Service is reaching out to audiences who, in the past, have been ignored or forgotten by the Service. At the same time, we remain committed to our traditional audiences. Our latest digital magazine has several features about how we are reaching new stakeholders and connecting our constituencies. 

From the Directorate: Connecting Our Constituencies »»

Fish and Wildlife News »»

Girl Scouts gather before helping plant 80 native plants to aid the monarch butterfly at San Diego Bay National Wildlife Refuge. Credit: Kayt Jonsson / USFWS
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A green jay at Laguna Atascosa National Wildlife Refuge in Texas. Credit: Mike Carlo / USFWS
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Wildlife Refuges: Where the Birds Are

February 22, 2017

Some people gladly awaken at 4 a.m. and drive hours to glimpse a rare Kirtland's warbler. Other people barely know a robin from a bald eagle, but they love to walk outdoors. For both types – experienced birders and newbies alike – national wildlife refuges are wonderful places to see birds in natural habitat.

Photo Essay »»

A green jay at Laguna Atascosa National Wildlife Refuge in Texas. Credit: Mike Carlo / USFWS
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