The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has a long tradition of scientific excellence and always uses the best-available science to inform its work to conserve fish, wildlife, plants, and their habitat for the benefit of the American public.
Created in 1903 by President Theodore Roosevelt, today's National Wildlife Refuge System protects habitats and wildlife across the country, from the Alaskan tundra to subtropical wetlands. Managed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Refuge System's 560-plus refuges cover more than 150 million acres and protect nearly 1,400 species of birds, mammals, reptiles, amphibians, and fish.
While national wildlife refuges were created to protect wildlife, they are for people too. Refuges are ideal places for people of all ages to explore and connect with the natural world. We invite you to learn more about and visit the national wildlife refuges and wetland management districts in Colorado, Kansas, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, Utah, and Wyoming.
The Mountain-Prairie Region's Office of Ecological Services (ES) works to restore and protect healthy populations of fish, wildlife, and plants and the environments upon which they depend. Using the best available science, ES personnel work with Federal, State, Tribal, local, and non-profit stakeholders, as well as private land owners, to avoid, minimize, and mitigate threats to our Nation's natural resources.
Providing leadership in the conservation of migratory bird habitat through partnerships, grants, and outreach for present and future generations. The Migratory Bird Program is responsible for maintaining healthy migratory bird populations for the benefit of the American people.
The U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service Fish and Aquatic Conservation Program in the Mountain-Prairie Region helps conserve, protect, and enhance aquatic resources and provides economically valuable recreational fishing to anglers across the country. The program comprises 12 National Fish Hatcheries.
Law enforcement is essential to virtually every aspect of wildlife conservation. The Office of Law Enforcement contributes to Service efforts to manage ecosystems, save endangered species, conserve migratory birds, preserve wildlife habitat, restore fisheries, combat invasive species, and promote international wildlife conservation.
External Affairs staff in the Mountain-Prairie Region of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service provides support to the regional office and field stations to communicate and faciliate information about the Service's programs to the public, media, Congress, Tribes, partners, and other stakeholders in the 8-state region.
As the principal federal partner for administering the Endangered Species Act (ESA) in the Mountain-Prairie Region, we take the lead in recovering and conserving our Region's imperiled species by fostering partnerships, employing scientific excellence, and developing a workforce of conservation leaders.
Our nation is home to an incredible diversity of plants, animals, and ecosystems, which contribute to human health, economic prosperity, and happiness. However, over the past 300 years, our social and biological landscape has dramatically changed. Many native plants and animals have become extinct, and many more of our natural communities and the species they sustain are threatened or under stress.
In 1973, Congress passed the ESA to address these alarming trends in the loss of native species and their habitats and to better safeguard, for the benefit of all citizens, the Nation's heritage in fish, wildlife, and plants. This significant legislation reflects the deep respect and appreciation that Americans have for our natural resources, as well as an understanding that all life is linked to a healthy environment.