Fisheries, Midwest Region
Conserving the Nature of America

Cooperation with Native Americans

Conservation of this Nation's fish and other aquatic resources cannot be successful without the partnership of Tribes; they manage or influence some of the most important aquatic habitats both on and off reservations. In addition, the Federal government and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) have distinct and unique obligations toward Tribes based on trust responsibility, treaty provisions, and statutory mandates. The Fisheries Program plays an important role in providing help and support to Tribes as they exercise their sovereignty in the management of their fish and wildlife resources on more than 55 million acres of Federal Indian trust land and in treaty reserved areas nationwide.

Our goal is to provide assistance to Tribes for manage, protection, and conservation of their treaty-reserved or statutorily defined trust natural resources in an effort to help Tribes develop their own capabilities. This includes:

  • Providing technical assistance such as training, development of management plans, maintaining healthy hatchery fish, and developing hatchery operating procedures.
  • Identifying sources of funding that can be used to enhance Tribal resource management, partnerships, or initiatives.
  • Providing fish as part of recovery plans for listed species to support sustainable fisheries management, and for trust species and programs to enhance outdoor recreation on Tribal lands.
  • Promoting the Service's obligations toward Tribes to maintain that our actions, programs, and partnerships do not infringe on tribal rights.