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Stories from the Home Page

Volunteering at Seal Beach National Wildlife Refuge in California. Credit: Lisa Cox/USFWS Credit: Lisa Cox/USFWS
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Check Out Your Lands on National Public Lands Day

September 22, 2018

Why not join with others in the nation’s largest, single-day volunteer effort for public lands? The 25th annual National Public Lands Day is Saturday, September 22, and it’s a perfect time to connect with YOUR public lands and communities. As an extra incentive, you can visit national wildlife refuges and other federally managed public lands free.  

Your Public Lands Need You »»

Find Events on Public Lands Across the Country (NEEF) »»

Volunteering at Seal Beach National Wildlife Refuge in California. Credit: Lisa Cox/USFWS Credit: Lisa Cox/USFWS
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Voluntourists Dave and Craig Gaviglia. Credit: Larry Miller/USFWS
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Father and Son Take a Volunteer Vacation at Fish Hatchery

September 19, 2018

Volunteering and tourism go hand in hand for this father and son duo who spent a week at Allegheny National Fish Hatchery in Warren, Pennsylvania.

Feeding Fish, Cleaning Raceways and More »»

Voluntourists Dave and Craig Gaviglia. Credit: Larry Miller/USFWS
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The winning 2018 Federal Duck Stamp art, an acrylic painting of a wood duck and decoy by Minnesota artist Scot Storm. Credit: © USFWS
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Minnesota Artist Scot Storm Wins 2018 Federal Duck Stamp Contest!

September 19, 2018

Scot Storm an artist from Freeport, Minnesota, is the winner of the 2018 Federal Duck Stamp Art Contest. Assistant Secretary of the Interior for Fish and Wildlife and Parks Andrea Travnicek announced the winner at the annual contest, held this year at Springs Preserve in Las Vegas. Storm’s acrylic painting will be made into the 2019-2020 Federal Migratory Bird Hunting and Conservation Stamp, or Duck Stamp. Since 1934, sales of this stamp have raised more than $1 billion to protect six million acres of wetlands habitat on national wildlife refuges around the nation. 

News Release »»

Learn More »»

The winning 2018 Federal Duck Stamp art, an acrylic painting of a wood duck and decoy by Minnesota artist Scot Storm. Credit: © USFWS
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Biologist Zach Eisenhower holds a salmon from Lake Champlain that returned to the Boquet River to spawn. Credit: USFWS
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For Anglers in Lake Champlain Basin, Salmon Fishing is a Science

September 19, 2018

In the 1970s, anglers in Lake Champlain and its tributaries experienced a memorable first: the first Atlantic salmon caught in the basin in more than a century. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and partners, including countless anglers, have been collaborating for years to restore Lake Champlain’s landlocked Atlantic salmon population and fishery.

‘It’s not just about the fishing; it’s about getting involved’ »»

More about Outdoor Recreation »»

Biologist Zach Eisenhower holds a salmon from Lake Champlain that returned to the Boquet River to spawn. Credit: USFWS
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The eye of Category 4 Hurricane Florence from the International Space Station. Credit: A. Gerst/ESA/NASA
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Service Prepares for Dangerous Florence

September 12, 2018

As Hurricane Florence’s path took a “dramatic shift” Wednesday, six Service Law Enforcement officers stood ready to follow wherever Florence lands. The Service also mobilized heavy equipment task forces and incident teams to get into the impact zones as quickly as possible. They will start assisting wildlife refuges and communities hit by the hurricane as soon as it is safe.

‘A Prolonged Event’ »»

The eye of Category 4 Hurricane Florence from the International Space Station. Credit: A. Gerst/ESA/NASA
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Tri-colored bat with visible signs of WNS from Cumberland Gap National Historic Park. Credit: NPS
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Service Provides $1 Million to States to Combat Bat-Killing Fungal Disease

September 5, 2018

The Service is awarding $1 million to 39 states and the District of Columbia to help build and adapt their capacity to combat white-nose syndrome, a deadly fungal disease that has killed millions of North American bats. States will use the funds to facilitate research, monitor bat populations, conduct surveillance and conserve bats vulnerable to the disease.

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Tri-colored bat with visible signs of WNS from Cumberland Gap National Historic Park. Credit: NPS
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A northern pintail coming in for a landing. Credit: Krista Lundgren/USFWS
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Interior Announces More Than $36 Million to Boost Wetland, Waterfowl Conservation, Access to Public Lands

September 5, 2018

The Migratory Bird Conservation Commission, chaired by U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke, approved $23.8 million in grants for the Service and its partners to conserve or restore almost 135,000 acres of wetland and associated upland habitats for waterfowl, shorebirds and other birds in 17 states throughout the United States. The commission also approved more than $13.1 million from the Migratory Bird Conservation Fund to conserve 5,802 acres for six national wildlife refuges and open thousands of additional acres for public hunting and recreational access. 

News Release »»

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A northern pintail coming in for a landing. Credit: Krista Lundgren/USFWS
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Youth fishing during a Zeta Phi Beta Sorority visit to a national wildlife refuge. Credit: USFWS
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Hunting and Fishing Opportunities Expanded at 30 of America’s National Wildlife Refuges

September 5, 2018

Continuing his efforts to increase access to public lands, U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke will open more than 251,000 acres to new or expanded hunting and fishing opportunities at 30 national wildlife refuges across the Service’s National Wildlife Refuge System. This will now bring the number of units where the public may hunt to 377, and the number where fishing is permitted to 312.

News Release »»

Hunting on National Wildlife Refuges »»

Fishing on National Wildlife Refuges »»

Youth fishing during a Zeta Phi Beta Sorority visit to a national wildlife refuge. Credit: USFWS
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Golden conure. Credit: Carlos Reis/Creative Commons
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Golden Conure Status Improves, Prompting Downlisting Proposal

September 4, 2018

The golden conure, a bright yellow bird in the parrot family found only in Brazil’s south Amazon Basin, is more widespread and abundant than previously thought – with an estimated population up from 2,500 to nearly 11,000 birds. Due to its improved status, we are proposing to downlist the golden conure from endangered to the less critical category of threatened under the Endangered Species Act, but it will remain protected as it still faces risks from deforestation and habitat loss. 

News Release »»

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Golden conure. Credit: Carlos Reis/Creative Commons
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A female Poweshiek skipperling is placed on a flower. Credit: Vince Cavalieri/USFWS
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Can Eight Butterflies Make a Difference? You Bet!

August 30, 2018

Eight butterflies may not seem like a lot. But when you are talking Poweshiek skipperlings, an endangered species with just 500 individuals estimated worldwide, it is significant. This summer, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and international partners in the butterfly’s conservation released eight captive-reared Poweshiek skipperling butterflies at sites in Michigan and Manitoba. The releases were the world’s first release of captive-reared Poweshiek skipperlings.

First Release of Captive-Reared Poweshiek Skipperlings »»

A female Poweshiek skipperling is placed on a flower. Credit: Vince Cavalieri/USFWS
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Paddlers “Float the Fork.” Credit: Haley Hutchins/AmeriCorps
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Hope Floats

August 27, 2018

After removing three dams and picking up more than 61,000 pounds of trash, even a car, a restoration project on West Virginia’s West Fork River is bearing fruit. Conservationists, including the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and the local community have been working for nearly a decade to repair the broken river.

Good for People, Wildlife »»

Paddlers “Float the Fork.” Credit: Haley Hutchins/AmeriCorps
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A pair of wild whooping cranes land at Aransas National Wildlife Refuge. Credit: Klaus Nigge/USFWS
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Wild Whooping Crane Population in Texas Breaks the 500 Mark

August 27, 2018

The estimates are in and the numbers are impressive! For the sixth year in a row, the wild population of endangered whooping cranes that winter at Aransas National Wildlife Refuge and surrounding habitats in south Texas has increased in size, and for the first time the population has topped the 500 mark.

505 Whooping Cranes Arrive on Texas Wintering Grounds »»

Whooping Crane Survey Results: Winter 2017-2018 »»

A pair of wild whooping cranes land at Aransas National Wildlife Refuge. Credit: Klaus Nigge/USFWS
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A young visitor to San Diego Bay National Wildlife Refuge finds humor in handling fake animal scat. Credit: Lisa Cox/USFWS
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Ewww, Gross. Tell Me More

August 17, 2018

Want to turn the uncurious into avid nature fans? Show them something gross or slimy. Many things we instinctively shy from as slimy, smelly, weird or grotesque also fascinate us. 

More About Nature’s Ick Factor »»

A young visitor to San Diego Bay National Wildlife Refuge finds humor in handling fake animal scat. Credit: Lisa Cox/USFWS
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Jose L. Roig has been participating in the Partners for Fish and Wildlife program since 2013, using his coffee plantation as a habitat to benefit seven animals and plants that are listed as endangered under the Endangered Species Act. Credit: Photo courtesy of Jose L. Roig
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Aid in the Shade

August 15, 2018

Once the immediate crisis of Hurricane Maria had passed last fall in Puerto Rico, the Service’s Partners for Fish and Wildlife Program got to work with shade-grown coffee plantations in the region. Working with a local partner, the Partners Program is providing about 2,000 native shade trees that will be planted soon. This helps not only coffee growers but also wildlife, with one plantation serving as home to seven endangered species.

Benefiting Endangered Species and Coffee »»

Jose L. Roig has been participating in the Partners for Fish and Wildlife program since 2013, using his coffee plantation as a habitat to benefit seven animals and plants that are listed as endangered under the Endangered Species Act. Credit: Photo courtesy of Jose L. Roig
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Hyacinth macaw. Credit: Hank Gillette / Wikimedia Commons
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Hyacinth Macaw Listed as Threatened Under Endangered Species Act

August 10, 2018

The hyacinth macaw, the largest species of parrot in the world, will now be listed as threatened under the Endangered Species Act. At risk from deforestation and illegal harvest for the pet trade across Central and South America, only three small populations of this magnificent bird remain, the largest in Brazil. With its listing, the Service has finalized a special rule that will ensure protection for the species but allow continued import and export of certain captive-bred hyacinth macaws and domestic trade across state lines, activities which are not a threat to macaws in the wild. International trade in macaws is tightly regulated under the Wild Bird Conservation Act and CITES

News Release »»

Learn More »»

Hyacinth macaw. Credit: Hank Gillette / Wikimedia Commons
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