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A Talk on the Wild Side.

Thank You to Volunteers Everywhere

  man holfing a bird to his chest as he measures a leg Dr. James “Jim” Montgomery Jr. collects waterbird data. Photo by USFWS

Last year, we highlighted a group of “super volunteers” who had donated more than 10,000 hours to FWS and conservation.

Recently, we learned that one of those super volunteers had passed an incredible threshold.

Jim Montgomery has been volunteering at Bitter Lake National Wildlife Refuge in New Mexico longer—since 1985—than any currently serving volunteer or staff member at Bitter Lake. In January, Jim passed the 25,000-volunteer-hour mark at Bitter Lake across his 33-year tenure (Related: 25,000 hours and still counting: A faithful volunteer at Bitter Lake National Wildlife Refuge).

   Man holds binocuars at chestFrank McGilverey volunteers at Patuxent Research Refuge. Photo by USFWS

Meanwhile, former Fish and Wildlife Service biologist Frank McGilverey, Patuxent Research Refuge's 2014 Volunteer of the Year, is another generous volunteer, having given more than 26,000 hours to Patuxent in Maryland. He continues to collect data that is helpful in determining wetland wildlife populations.

Just the other day, Frank ambled down to Cash Lake with his team to identify some birds in the distance that they could not quite make out. Even after his 60 to 70 years in the field, he still finds his work fascinating.

We are indebted to Jim, Frank and each one of our 42,000 volunteers, who contribute more than 1.5 million hours of work.

  wwoman with red-tailed hawk on arm Lena Chang, senior fish and wildlife biologist with Ecological Services in the Ventura Fish and Wildlife Office in California and volunteer with the Ojai Raptor Center, works with Rosie the red-tailed hawk, a non-releasable education ambassador for the center. Photo by Tom Clancey, courtesy Lena Chang

As we celebrate National Volunteer Week, we also are highlighting our staff members who volunteer. Some started their career of service with the Peace Corps. Others perform a difficult job and then spend their time giving back to others.

Photo Gallery: FWS Employees who Volunteer

Story: Taking Care of Rabbits

From all of us, thank you to all volunteers everywhere.

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