Press Release
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Seeks Public Comment on a Draft Environmental Assessment for the Hankinson Shooting Range Construction in Richland County, North Dakota
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The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration Program (WSFR) is seeking public comment on a Draft Environmental Assessment (EA) regarding the North Dakota Game and Fish Department’s (NDGFD) proposed construction of Hankinson Shooting Range in Richland County, North Dakota. Funding for the project administered by the WSFR Program constitutes a Federal action subject to the provisions of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) of 1969, as amended.  

The Service has received notice from NDGFD proposing the construction of Hankinson Shooting Range. The purpose of the proposed project is to develop an accessible public gun range that would promote safe, responsible, knowledgeable, and involved gun use. Shooting ranges that are safely constructed, properly managed, and publicly accessible play a role in recruiting new hunting and target shooting enthusiasts, as well as improving their skill and proficiency. These ranges also create a place for people to go that are safe and maintained to maximize safety.

The proposed shooting range is to be approximately 4.69 acres in size located on a 114-acre parcel owned by the NDGFD.

The Draft EA prepared by the Service and NDGFD analyzes the environmental effects of the construction of the shooting range and provides another opportunity for all interested stakeholders to review and comment on the proposed construction. In the Draft EA, the Service concluded that the proposed construction would alter current land use from an agricultural field to a public shooting range; 1.271 acres of wetland is anticipated to be impacted but would be mitigated through the creation and/or improvement of wetlands on another NDGFD owned wildlife management area wildlife management area
For practical purposes, a wildlife management area is synonymous with a national wildlife refuge or a game preserve. There are nine wildlife management areas and one game preserve in the National Wildlife Refuge System.

Learn more about wildlife management area
; would not affect historical or cultural resources; may affect, but not likely to adversely affect, Dakota Skipper and its critical habitat, Poweshiek Skipperling and its critical habitat, and Western Prairie Fringed Orchid.

Public comments will be accepted for a 30-day period which ends March 14, 2024.  Copies of the Draft EA and Appendices, which include details of the proposed action and the alternatives considered, are available online by clicking on the title of the document at Those without internet access may request copies by calling the Services’ Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration Program at 303-236-8165.  Comments will be accepted until March 14, 2024, and should be sent via email to:; or via mail to: Kayla Barrett, Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration Program, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, P.O. Box 25486, Mail Stop 60152, Denver, CO, 80225.


The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service works with others to conserve, protect, and enhance fish, wildlife, plants, and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people. For more information, visit and connect with us on social media: Facebook, Instagram, X (formerly known as Twitter), LinkedIn, Flickr, and YouTube.

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