The Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act (ANILCA) established Togiak National Wildlife Refuge.
The four major purposes of Togiak National Wildlife Refuge set forth by ANILCA are:
Managers on Togiak Refuge don't spend much time moving dirt,
modifying water levels, burning the woods, or fighting exotic invaders, tasks
that often consume the time of refuge staffers in the Lower 48. Mother Nature
handles most of those activities here. Management consists primarily of keeping
a finger on the pulse of the ecosystem and managing human uses to ensure the
continuation of the pristine conditions that have existed over the millennia.
To this end, the refuge staff monitor the populations of a host of terrestrial,
aquatic and marine fish and wildlife species and their habitats, as well as
For example, providing subsistence opportunities for the
residents of eight local villages is a refuge priority. Monitoring subsistence
species gives the refuge manager the information necessary to manage wildlife
resources for the continuing benefit of subsistence users.
Guided public use is managed through a complex permitting
program that includes air and water taxi services, sport fishing, big game
hunting, and wildlife viewing. Unguided access is managed through public
contacts and a force of Refuge Rangers who patrol more than 200 miles of
rivers. In total, Togiak Refuge receives a public use level of more than 20,000
visitor days per year.
The refuge's outreach program is the key to gaining public
support for management activities. Efforts include three environmental
education camps, 80 to 100 classroom visits per year in 14 communities, a
weekly radio program, teacher workshops, interpretive programs at the local
airport and village public meetings.
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Their scientific name means "tooth walker." Males can weigh more than 3300 pounds.