Wildlife Inspector Uniform Requirements

452 FW 1
FWM Number
Amended Date(s)
Originating Office
Division of Technical and Field Support

1.1 What is the purpose of this chapter? This chapter:

A. Provides guidance on uniforms for wildlife inspectors in the Office of Law Enforcement, and

B. Establishes uniform requirements for inspectors to ensure that they are readily identifiable not only as Service employees but as Service officers.

1.2 What is the uniform policy for wildlife inspectors?

A. Wildlife inspectors must wear the approved uniform, law enforcement badge, and collar insignia (see sections 1.3 through 1.5) while on duty. Badges and collar insignia clearly identify inspectors as representatives of the Office of Law Enforcement. Exhibit 1 includes pictures of the uniform.

B. Exceptions to wearing the full uniform:  

(1) As appropriate, the Regional Special Agent in Charge (SAC) may authorize inspectors to not wear uniforms for safety reasons.

(2) Inspectors may wear the polo shirt with cloth law enforcement badge only in casual settings where they do not expect to exercise their enforcement authority.

(3) Inspectors may only wear the Service uniform turtleneck under the appropriate uniform shirt.

(4) Supervisors may temporarily waive the uniform requirement when it is inappropriate (i.e., court appearances, Headquarters meetings). Inspectors must wear clothing appropriate for the assigned special duty.

1.3 What are the required uniform items for wildlife inspectors? The required uniform items are:

A. Law enforcement badge issued by Headquarters, Office of Law Enforcement (HQ/OLE) (also see section 1.4).

B. Law enforcement tan uniform shirt with badge inserted through the attached eyelets, collar insignia, metal name plate, and Service-issued tenure pins as appropriate. 

C. Dark brown uniform pants.

D. Basket weave or smooth dress, dark brown uniform belt.

E. Dark brown uniform outer wear (i.e., coat or jacket) worn either with the attached cloth badge or the original metal badge placed in the standard badge location.

F. Uniform dark brown or black steel-toed footwear or other professional footwear that is similar in color to the authorized footwear and meets health and safety standards.

1.4 What are the requirements for wearing the badge?

A. Inspectors must wear the authorized uniform shirt with badge or the approved outer wear with metal or cloth badge when on duty.

B. Inspectors may wear a uniform shirt with a badge or a polo shirt with cloth badge when participating in non-law enforcement orientated outreach.

C. Inspectors may wear appropriate protective clothing over the uniform when working with property or evidence in a Service facility.

1.5 What are the requirements for the collar insignia?

A. Inspectors at the GS-11 level and above must wear the appropriate collar insignia designating the officer’s grade on the uniform shirt. Use of the collar insignia helps the public to identify supervisory and senior inspection staff.

B. Table 1-1 shows the insignia inspectors use.




Single Silver Bar


Gold Oak leaf


Silver Oak leaf


Silver Eagle

Table 1-1: Wildlife Inspector Uniform Insignia

C. Exhibit 2 shows the appropriate placement of wildlife inspector collar insignia and provides guidance on size and a recommended vendor for the insignia.

1.6 How do inspectors pay for uniforms?

A. Uniform Allowance. Inspectors use their uniform allowance to buy uniforms. Inspectors may not use their uniform allowance to buy uniform items for others.

B. Use of Station Funds. Inspectors may only use station funds to buy:

(1) Cold weather uniform items when the uniform allowance is not sufficient to buy all necessary items. Only new employees may use station funds for this purpose.

(2) Steel-toed boots, which are not available through the Service uniform contract.

(3) Plain metal name plate with first and last name of inspector.

(4) Rank insignia (two sets per inspector) for those required to wear them (see section 1.5).

(5) Baseball caps and tan polo shirts with the wildlife inspector badge.

1.7 Who owns the uniform? All uniform items, Service patches, and law enforcement patches and badges are Government property. Inspectors:

A. May not give, trade, or sell the items to anyone who is not authorized to wear the uniform.

B. Must return uniform items to their supervisor when they leave their positions.

C. Must destroy worn or unserviceable uniform items with Service patches or cloth badges in a manner that prevents unauthorized people from using them. 

D. Must return their badge and credentials to the Headquarters Office of Law Enforcement after separation, termination, or retirement. 441 FW 1.12, Conduct, General Rules, and Definitions describes the exceptions to this requirement.