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Stories from the Home Page

Each year, Nathan Wiese harvests free-range organic meat to feed his family. Credit: Andrew Miller
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A Beautiful Sunrise and a Pronghorn Hunt

December 15, 2017

A trout biologist muses on the path from his first whitetail hunt as a boy on his grandfather’s farm in Wisconsin, to waiting out a pronghorn buck beneath an immense sky on the New Mexico shortgrass prairie.

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Learn More About Hunting »»

Each year, Nathan Wiese harvests free-range organic meat to feed his family. Credit: Andrew Miller
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Tree swallows during spring snowstorm. Credit: Keith Williams/Creative Commons
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How Do They Do That?

December 15, 2017

If you live anywhere where it gets cold, you have probably wondered how in the world birds keep warm. Some cuddle; some even have brains that get bigger in the fall. Find out more tricks and how you can help.

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Tree swallows during spring snowstorm. Credit: Keith Williams/Creative Commons
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Snowshoers enjoy the terrain at, from left, Canaan Valley National Wildlife Refuge in West Virginia, Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge and Des Lacs National Wildlife Refuge in North Dakota.  Credit: USFWS
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#FindYourWay on Snow

December 14, 2017

From the Great Plains, the Great Lakes and the Northeast to the high country of the West and the expanses of Alaska, national wildlife refuges in northern latitudes are special places to celebrate winter. Many of them are ideal for cross-country skiing and snowshoeing. Some also lend themselves, in Alaska especially, to dog sledding (aka mushing) and even skijoring.

Photo Essay »»

Find a Refuge Near You »»

Snowshoers enjoy the terrain at, from left, Canaan Valley National Wildlife Refuge in West Virginia, Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge and Des Lacs National Wildlife Refuge in North Dakota.  Credit: USFWS
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Lockett with artifacts from Papua New Guinea, including swords and shields made from animal parts and reptile products discovered in a warehouse. Credit: USFWS
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17-year-old K-9 Program Dogs Offenders

December 11, 2017

Whether it is on a national wildlife refuge or a warehouse at an international airport, “man’s best friend,” is making a difference for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. 

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Lockett with artifacts from Papua New Guinea, including swords and shields made from animal parts and reptile products discovered in a warehouse. Credit: USFWS
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Annual kids ice fishing clinic at Upper Mississippi River National Wildlife and Fish Refuge. Credit: Sabrina Chandler / USFWS
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Ice Fishing: Thanks for the Family Memories

December 6, 2017

Ice fishing is very social in a season when people can feel cooped up at home. People can bring their fish cookers, catch fish and spend time outdoors with friends and family. Year-round quality fishing opportunities are available on more than 270 national wildlife refuges.

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Annual kids ice fishing clinic at Upper Mississippi River National Wildlife and Fish Refuge. Credit: Sabrina Chandler / USFWS
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Wind can make deer hunting a challenge because it blows scents around. Credit: USFWS
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Hagerman National Wildlife Refuge in Texas Offers Quality Deer Hunts

December 6, 2017

Just ask seminary professor Kyle Walker, who called his recent experience “the hunt of a lifetime.” After scouting the refuge, taking a bow hunter education course and passing an archery shooting proficiency test, he was ready. And he “took the best buck I have ever harvested on public lands.” 

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Wind can make deer hunting a challenge because it blows scents around. Credit: USFWS
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Bald Cyprus swamp. Credit: A.P. Hill
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Rare Wildlife Abound amid Combat Training in Eastern Virginia

December 5, 2017

Between the sprawl of the Northern Virginia beltway and the Richmond capital lies a window to the rich natural heritage of Virginia’s Coastal Plain: 76,000 acres of old-growth forests, swamps, bogs, wetlands and pine savannas. Protected from development and managed by an endangered species staff, lands at Fort A.P. Hill are a haven for protected, at-risk and diverse species. 

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Bald Cyprus swamp. Credit: A.P. Hill
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A trailcam image shows a coyote giving chase to a pronghorn at Sevilleta National Wildlife Refuge in New Mexico. Credit: USFWS
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Wildlife Selfies

November 30, 2017

Wildlife selfies are proliferating on national wildlife refuges, triggered by animals when they approach remote-action trail cameras. The resulting shots not only entertain; they also inform refuge science and help drive management actions.

Photo Essay »»

A trailcam image shows a coyote giving chase to a pronghorn at Sevilleta National Wildlife Refuge in New Mexico. Credit: USFWS
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A crew of U.S. Geological Survey biologists search for diving birds in the Chesapeake Bay. Credit: Jonathan Fiely/USGS
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Study Helps Offshore Energy Development Minimize Wildlife Impacts

November 18, 2017

Braving rain, snow and ice, researchers caught and tagged three diving bird species that use the federal waters in the mid-Atlantic during winter and migration. The result of this effort was a study, released by the Fish and Wildlife Service and Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, that will help wildlife managers and energy companies make decisions about where to construct offshore wind facilities to minimize impacts to marine birds.

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A crew of U.S. Geological Survey biologists search for diving birds in the Chesapeake Bay. Credit: Jonathan Fiely/USGS
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Turkey in full display at Wallkill National Wildlife Refuge. Credit: USFWS
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Let's Talk Turkey

November 17, 2017

Thought the only turkey sound is gobble, gobble? In fact, turkeys make all kinds of sounds: fly-down or fly-up cackle; kee kee run; excited yelp and more. Wild turkeys are not hard to find – if you look in the right place. National wildlife refuges are great places to view wild turkeys or find the perfect hunt. Refuge trails generally are open sunrise to sunset, many even on Thanksgiving Day when refuge visitor centers will be closed.

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Turkey in full display at Wallkill National Wildlife Refuge. Credit: USFWS
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Northern bobwhite. Credit: Will Parson/Chesapeake Bay Program (Creative Commons)
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Enticing the ‘Prince of Game Birds,’ and its Court, Back to a Maryland Farm

November 14, 2017

It was the early 1980s when Bob Spiering noticed that the whistling call of the bobwhite had gone silent on the family farm on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. He has worked with federal agencies for years, restoring the land and bringing back not just the quail but a host of native wildlife.

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Northern bobwhite. Credit: Will Parson/Chesapeake Bay Program (Creative Commons)
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Navy veteran Tom Dietsch is a Migratory Bird Biologist for the Pacific Southwest Region. See more veterans in the Fish and Wildlife Service. Credit: Courtesy of Tom Dietschh
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Betting on Vets Helps Achieve the Service’s Mission

November 8, 2017

The Service’s Carlsbad Fish and Wildlife Office has worked closely with the local Veterans Affairs’ Regional Office over the years to welcome returning veterans with career development opportunities. In addition to assisting with the transition from military to civilian life, the Service benefits from the diversity of the veterans’ skills.

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Freedom Hunters: Outdoor Experiences Serving Those Who Have Served »»

Photo Gallery: Veterans in the Service »»

Navy veteran Tom Dietsch is a Migratory Bird Biologist for the Pacific Southwest Region. See more veterans in the Fish and Wildlife Service. Credit: Courtesy of Tom Dietschh
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A young hunter prepares for her first waterfowl hunting experience at Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge as part of the Annual Youth Waterfowlers Program. Credit: USFWS
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U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Expands Hunting and Fishing Opportunities at 10 National Wildlife Refuges

November 7, 2017

In a continuing effort to increase access to hunting and fishing on public lands, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service today announced a final rule to open or expand opportunities across 132,000 acres on 10 national wildlife refuges. This will bring the number of refuges where the public may hunt up to 373 and up to 311 where fishing is permitted.

News Release »»

A young hunter prepares for her first waterfowl hunting experience at Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge as part of the Annual Youth Waterfowlers Program. Credit: USFWS
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Spencer Smith (left) takes his oath as Director. Credit: USFWS
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Former Fish and Wildlife Service Director Smith dies at 94

November 6, 2017

Spencer Smith, who rose from field biologist to Director of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, died October 30 at the age of 94. Director Smith served as Director from 1970 to 1973. 

Five Directors Share their Stories »»

Oral History Interview with Spencer Smith »»

Spencer Smith (left) takes his oath as Director. Credit: USFWS
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Meagan Racey has chosen to live closer to the land. Here, she holds a chick that would soon provide her with eggs. Credit: Courtesy of Meagan Racey
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From the Desk of a Novice Sportswoman

November 6, 2017

Tag along on this Fish and Wildlife Service staffer's first white-tailed deer hunt. 

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Learn More About Hunting »»

Meagan Racey has chosen to live closer to the land. Here, she holds a chick that would soon provide her with eggs. Credit: Courtesy of Meagan Racey
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