Law Enforcement

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"Fulfillment of the Service's conservation mission requires the effective enforcement of wildlife protection laws both on Service lands and the country at large." — Dale Hall, former Director


Refuge Law Enforcement Mission

Protecting resources and people on our refuges is the fundamental responsibility of refuge officers. The mission of the Refuge Law Enforcement Program is to support the administration of the National Wildlife Refuge System through the management and protection of natural, historic and cultural resources, property, and people on lands and waters of our national wildlife refuges. 

Refuge Law Enforcement Objectives

Law enforcement is an integral part of managing the National Wildlife Refuge System. Refuge law enforcement officers are responsible for upholding federal laws and regulations that protect natural resources, the public, and employees. These are our objectives: 
  • To protect refuge visitors and employees from disturbance or harm by others.  
  • To assist visitors in understanding refuge laws, regulations, and the reasons for them.  
  • To enhance the management and protection of fish and wildlife resources on refuges.  
  • To ensure the legally prescribed, equitable use of fish and wildlife resources on refuges.  
  • To obtain compliance with laws and regulations necessary for the proper administration, management, and protection of the National Wildlife Refuge System.  

If you witness possible violations against wildlife on the Oregon coast, report it to the Oregon State Police at 800-453-7888.

If you have found an injured wild animal, keep these tips in mind to ensure its best possible chance of recovery: 

  • Please do not handle any wild animal if doing so risks your safety or the safety of others. When in doubt, do not attempt a capture.  
  • Never handle a large bird of prey, raccoon, skunk, deer, or opossum that appears alert and responsive. These animals have particularly powerful talons, teeth, legs, and/or claws.  
  • Keep a safe distance from the animal, and do what you can to protect it from harassment by pets or other people.  
  • Contact a wildlife rehabilitator as soon as possible. Visit the OSU Marine Mammal Stranding Network site for more on stranded mammals; go to the Wildlife Center of the North Coast site for information concerning stranded birds.