Resource Management

Why do we "manage" Mother Nature? This is not an easy question to answer, and there is no one golden answer. Suffice it to say that refuge management is complicated, sometimes controversial, but always needed. Most national wildlife refuges were established to protect and enhance wetlands for the conservation of migratory birds, some were established to provide habitat for the Nation's endangered species. All need to be maintained in order to ensure the survival of the wildlife that live within them.

Fire Management

Learn more about Fire Management on St. Vincent NWR

Refuge Managed Impoundment System Management

The Refuge actively manages nearly 200 acres of open water on St. Vincent Island. The six permanent open water bodies are managed as three separate impoundment systems for a variety of fish and wildlife resources. The depths and salinities of the three impoundment systems vary seasonally according to monthly targets and local precipitation but function together to provide habitat conditions for nesting wading birds, food communities for a wide variety of migratory waterfowl and other waterbirds, fresh water for island wildlife, and a viable and popular freshwater sport fishery. 

Exotic Plant Eradication Program

Refuge staff and volunteers work to identify and remove a wide variety of nonnative plants from the Refuge to benefit native fish and wildlife species. Exotic plants such as the Chinese tallow tree (also known as the popcorn tree) are removed with a combination of control methods including prescribed fire, physical or mechanical means, and herbicide application. 

Endangered Species Program 

  • Marine turtle nesting survey
  • Shorebird habitat management 
  • Red wolf island propagation program  

Wildlife Population Management 

  • Wading bird rookery monitoring
  • Breeding bird surveys
  • Deer herd management

Trapping Occurs on this Refuge

Trapping is a wildlife management tool used on some national wildlife refuges. Trapping may be used to protect endangered and threatened species or migratory birds or to control certain wildlife populations. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service also views trapping as a legitimate recreational and economic activity when there are harvestable surpluses of fur-bearing mammals. Outside of Alaska, refuges that permit trapping as a recreational use may require trappers to obtain a refuge special use permit. Signs are posted on refuges where trapping occurs. Contact the refuge manager for specific regulations.Click here for more information on trapping within the National Wildlife Refuge System.