Law Enforcement

The National Wildlife Refuge System is guided by a policy of wildlife first, but it also encourages providing wildlife-dependent recreation at suitable levels. Refuge regulations set the boundaries for visitor activities and enforcing those regulations plays an important role in helping the refuge fulfill its purposes, as well as the wider mission of the agency. Formerly, enforcement duties are carried out by refuge staff with training and collateral responsibilities. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service now relies on full-time law enforcement officers that provide services to one or more unit within the National Wildlife Refuge System. Law enforcement issues may be referred to the Wildlife Crimes tip line at 1-844-FWS-TIPS (397-8477). Staff will be available 24 hours a day 7 days a week through the tip line.