U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service Southwest Region

U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service Southwest Region U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Southwest Region The Southwest Region encompasses Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, and Oklahoma, with our Regional Office in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
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We work with a variety of partners and other agencies, communities, tribal governments, conservation groups, businesses interests, landowners and concerned citizens to conserve, protect, and enhance fish, wildlife, and their habitat.

Mission: The mission of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is working with others to conserve, protect, and enhance fish, wildlife, plants and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people.

Operating as usual

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
11/06/2020

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Many people think of robins as a sign of spring, but did you know they can be found year round across most of the country? In the winter, they spend more time in the woods searching for berries.

Photo: American robin by Courtney Celley/USFWS.

The Ozark big-eared bat is an endangered species found only in a small number of caves in Arkansas, Oklahoma and Missour...
10/30/2020

The Ozark big-eared bat is an endangered species found only in a small number of caves in Arkansas, Oklahoma and Missouri. Much of the population is located at Ozark Plateau National Wildlife Refuge. A major threat to the species is white-nose syndrome, a fungal disease that causes hibernating bats to wake up, expending needed fat reserves.

#BatWeek #WNS

My, what big ears you have! Endangered Ozark big-eared bats have ears that measure about an inch long. When young bats are born, their ears cover their eyes for the first few days.

Photo: Biologist holding an Ozark big-eared bat courtesy of Jena Donnel/ODWC.

The San Saba River is one of the last free-flowing river systems in Central Texas, but parts are at risk of drying up du...
10/28/2020

The San Saba River is one of the last free-flowing river systems in Central Texas, but parts are at risk of drying up due to drought and excessive pumping. We are funding a team of researchers to study how this could impact at risk mussel species like the Texas fatmucket: bit.ly/SanSabaMussels

With Texas A&M AgriLife and The Nature Conservancy in Texas

It's good to celebrate victories as we get them, and here are thousands - 25,000 threatened Chiricahua leopard frogs are...
10/28/2020
Chiricahua Leopard Frog Makes Leaps As Phoenix Zoo Releases Thousands Into The Wild

It's good to celebrate victories as we get them, and here are thousands - 25,000 threatened Chiricahua leopard frogs are released into the wild thanks to Phoenix Zoo.

Full story below-

So far in 2020, it seems if it’s not one thing, it’s another. It may feel like there’s been nothing really worth celebrating.At times like these, we need to take the small victories as they come — such as saving endangered animals.One such group is a special species native to Arizona. Tara H...

We are proud to announce the Houston Zoo as this year’s Recovery Champion for its leadership in veterinary & rehabilitat...
10/21/2020

We are proud to announce the Houston Zoo as this year’s Recovery Champion for its leadership in veterinary & rehabilitation care, debris removal, and education for the endangered Kemp’s ridley sea turtle and other listed sea turtle species on the Texas coast: bit.ly/2019RecoveryChampion

Our public lands belong to everyone, but it can be challenging for hunters with disabilities to access these outdoor spa...
10/20/2020

Our public lands belong to everyone, but it can be challenging for hunters with disabilities to access these outdoor spaces. Just in time for the upcoming Texas waterfowl hunting season, we teamed up with Ducks Unlimited to build the first ADA-compliant duck hunting blind on Texas public coastal lands at Brazoria National Wildlife Refuge: http://bit.ly/ADABlindBrazoria

Brazoria and San Bernard National Wildlife Refuges

Our Arlington Ecological Services Field Office is participating in this year's @GrapevineTX Monarch Butterfly Flutterby ...
10/15/2020

Our Arlington Ecological Services Field Office is participating in this year's @GrapevineTX Monarch Butterfly Flutterby celebration. Check out a live stream featuring the Mayor’s Monarch Pledge, educational videos promoting monarch conservation, announcement of art and costume contest winners and the final LIVE butterfly release at 11 a.m. on Saturday, Oct. 17 at https://www.facebook.com/GrapevineTX/.

More and more families are enjoying traditional outdoor activities that come with built-in social distancing measures. N...
10/14/2020

More and more families are enjoying traditional outdoor activities that come with built-in social distancing measures. Nationwide spikes in hunting and fishing license sales for 2020 are unprecedented. This has been good for families and for wildlife conservation.

Read about how one Oklahoma family keeps the traditions of outdoor recreation and wildlife conservation alive during this pandemic: https://www.fws.gov/news/blog/index.cfm/2020/10/14/Hunting-During-the-Pandemic--Respite-for-Families-is-Boon-for-Conservation

Photo: Mackenzie Hendrix, 16, holds a flathead catfish she caught while camping in Oklahoma. Photo courtesy of John Hendrix.

While it's not proven that mantids could defend us from an invasion of murder hornets, this female bosque praying mantis...
10/14/2020

While it's not proven that mantids could defend us from an invasion of murder hornets, this female bosque praying mantis seems quite at home in the flight path of these European honey bees making their deliveries to an Albuquerque backyard bee box.

Mantises are pretty indiscriminate as far as diet goes. Bees, butterflies, moths, grasshoppers, flies and mosquitoes are all on the menu. Some species of mantis will eat frogs, lizards and even hummingbirds!

Photo: A green praying mantis eating a bee on a white bee box. Credit Al Barrus, public affairs specialist, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
10/09/2020

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

It's DESERT TORTOISE WEEK! 🐢🎉🐢🎉

Raise your hand if you love desert tortoises! Well lucky you, all week we'll be highlighting this iconic desert species!

Tune into Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to scope out these themes, and be sure to hashtag #DesertTortoiseWeek if you post pics!

Monday: Desert Habitat Appreciation Day

Tuesday: Cover Our Tracks in Desert Tortoise Habitat

Wednesday: Tortoise Perspective Challenge

Thursday: Desert Tortoise Education

Friday: Desert Tortoise Movie Night, search U.S. Geological Survey (USGS)'s "The Heat is On: Desert Tortoise and Survival" on YouTube

Photo of a baby desert tortoise hatching out of an egg by USGS

Thanks to Carol Ezell of Las Cruces, NM, for letting us share these photos!
10/06/2020

Thanks to Carol Ezell of Las Cruces, NM, for letting us share these photos!

Strike a pose! This greater roadrunner was recently photographed in southern New Mexico. The breakneck bird can run nearly 20 miles per hour and some of its favorite snacks are scorpions, lizards, and snakes. Despite what you might have seen in cartoons, however, coyotes can pose a challenge: the wily predators can run over 2x faster than roadrunners!

Greater roadrunners live year-round in the southwestern United States and parts of Mexico. They are also New Mexico’s official State Bird. What kinds of wildlife have you spotted recently?

Photos courtesy of Carol Ezell.

10/06/2020
How To Moth

Check out this new "How to Moth" video by Anahuac National Wildlife Refuge Ranger Jessica Jia

And for moth-ers in southeast Texas, don't miss Friday Night Bug Lights - Virtual Night Out on Oct 16, event registration is free! https://www.eventbrite.com/e/friday-night-bug-lights-virtual-night-out-tickets-123175520297

Want to try something new this October? We are proud to present our first #LiveYourWild How-To video. Learn how you can set up a station to attract and obser...

The Brazos River Authority is stepping forward to help the Texas fawnsfoot and false spike, two mussel species that call...
10/05/2020

The Brazos River Authority is stepping forward to help the Texas fawnsfoot and false spike, two mussel species that call the Brazos River home, through a Candidate Conservation Agreement with Assurances (CCAA). If approved, the CCAA and enhancement of survival permit would be in place for 20 years and implement a voluntary conservation strategy to help the mussels and their habitat.

A 30-day public comment period will begin on October 6. More information on the mussels and the draft CCAA is available here: https://www.fws.gov/southwest/es/AustinTexas/

While on a joint Dove enforcement operation in Texas, a Texas Parks and Wildlife Department Game Warden and a U.S. Fish ...
09/30/2020

While on a joint Dove enforcement operation in Texas, a Texas Parks and Wildlife Department Game Warden and a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Special Agent conducted a compliance check on five outdoor hunters (Jessica Kulisek, Cierra Laster, Kayla McKight, Amy Bohannon, Audra Bohannon). Amy Bohannon is an avid hunter and invited her friends and family to celebrate her birthday on a hunt. They even have matching camp shirts.

Southwest urban refuges include Valle de Oro near Albuquerque and Balcones near Austin. What's your favorite urban Natio...
09/29/2020

Southwest urban refuges include Valle de Oro near Albuquerque and Balcones near Austin. What's your favorite urban National Wildlife Refuge?

Happy Urban National Wildlife Refuge Day! No matter where you live, you can always connect with nearby nature and wildlife: http://ow.ly/FzJe50BEepf

There are 101 urban refuges across the U.S. Most metropolitan areas have one within a one-hour drive! Where are your favorite places to view wildlife and explore America’s great outdoors?

#WildlifeRefuge #CommunityInTheWild

Photo 1: Rare black-footed ferrets, which visitors can see at the Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge near Denver, Colorado by Kimberly Fraser/USFWS.

Photo 2: USFWS Director Aurelia Skipwith kayaking at John Heinz National Wildlife Refuge at Tinicum near Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Photo 3: White pelicans swimming at Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge in Utah, outside of Salt Lake City, by Ryan Moehring/USFWS.

Here's a recent episode of the podcast "Hannah and Erik Go Birding" where they interview the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Serv...
09/25/2020
Hannah and Erik Go Birding

Here's a recent episode of the podcast "Hannah and Erik Go Birding" where they interview the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Division of Migratory Birds Cheif for the Southwest Dr. Scott Carleton, addressing a recent mass bird die-off event in New Mexico.

About a week ago, there was a large bird mass mortality event in New Mexico. Why does that happen?

U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service Southwest Region Migratory Bird Chief, Scott, helps us understand why.

Points for great camo! Blink and you'll miss this stealthy assassin bug from genus Sinea, sucking the juice from a ladyb...
09/24/2020

Points for great camo! Blink and you'll miss this stealthy assassin bug from genus Sinea, sucking the juice from a ladybug after impaling it with its rostrum. Like something from sci-fi horror, some assassin bugs will wear their victims' dried corpses!

Over 7,000 species of assassin bug have been described to date. The 14 species of genus Sinea are generally found in the Southwestern states and Mexico, with this species clearly benefitting from a dry landscape.

While most assassin bugs are great for your garden, killing aphids and mites, some are indiscriminate and will assassinate other beneficial insects, such as this ladybug.

Photo: a light brown insect resembling dry plant material has its rostrum inserted in a ladybug, while on a dry plant.
Credit: Al Barrus / USFWS in Tome, New Mexico.

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Director, Aurelia Skipwith, visited with students involved with the agency's Urban Wildli...
09/21/2020

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Director, Aurelia Skipwith, visited with students involved with the agency's Urban Wildlife Conservation Program in Houston, Texas. The Program brings multiple partners together, including schools, to bring wildlife conservation and stewardship to urban communities. https://www.fws.gov/urban/partnerships.php#partnerTop

Aurelia Skipwith, Director of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, visited Hagerman National Wildlife Refuge near Sherman...
09/21/2020

Aurelia Skipwith, Director of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, visited Hagerman National Wildlife Refuge near Sherman, Texas. The Director spent time touring the Refuge viewing wildlife, habitat management strategies, oil and gas development, and public recreational opportunities. She also met with Refuge staff and local partners.

Photo credit: USFWS

Some great news about a cool bird. You can learn more about the science behind the masked bobwhite recovery effort form ...
09/18/2020

Some great news about a cool bird. You can learn more about the science behind the masked bobwhite recovery effort form this case study: https://usbr.maps.arcgis.com/apps/MapSeries/index.html?appid=5e40abe55b9b4473af728a50f820b36e

Privacy please! The masked bobwhite is making a comeback at Buenos Aires National Wildlife Refuge in Arizona. Throughout its summer breeding season, this rare native quail was seen and heard, indicating the birds are faring well on the refuge’s semidesert grassland habitat.

We estimate about 200 masked bobwhites currently live on the refuge – a century ago, none remained in the area! Masked bobwhites also overwintered on the refuge for the second consecutive year in 2019-2020, another indication of healthy habitat and conservation progress.

The masked bobwhite was wiped out in the southwestern United States by the early 1900s due to extended drought and human alteration that made the landscape barren – as the region’s lush grasslands disappeared, so did this unique bird.

The refuge was established in 1985 to assist with reintroducing and recovering the masked bobwhite in the United States, ensuring that this imperiled bird would endure for future generations as part of a balanced ecosystem and a sign of America’s shared natural heritage.

We continue working with public and private partners to help the masked bobwhite survive and expand its range in the wild via captive breeding and release.

#Arizona #Bobwhite #Conservation #DOIDelivers #WildlifeConservation #WildlifeWin

Photos: A male (black head feathers and brown chest feathers) and female (speckled brown and white feathers) masked bobwhite by Paula O'Briant/#USFWS

We're very proud to have Tanner Germany of our New Mexico Fish and Wildlife Conservation Office represent U.S. Fish and ...
09/16/2020

We're very proud to have Tanner Germany of our New Mexico Fish and Wildlife Conservation Office represent U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
in this awesome #fedfashionweek campaign by General Services Administration Performance.gov , showcasing the outstanding essential service performed by federal employees!

Image description: USFWS Photo of a person holding a fishing net, and wearing a mask and hardhat.

Text next to photo reads: #FEDFASHIONWEEK
1) This "brilliant white" hard hat protects biological technician, Tanner, as he works to protect endangered silvery minnows in New Mexico.
2) Tanner's seine net, which is used to collect fish, is helping him mitigate fish loss in this dried out portion of the Rio Grande!
3) Along with his authentic U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service mud-stained uniform, Tanner is wearing a face mask to help reduce the spread of COVID-19

After extensive research, we found the yellow-billed cuckoo still meets the criteria to receive protection as a threaten...
09/15/2020

After extensive research, we found the yellow-billed cuckoo still meets the criteria to receive protection as a threatened species. Thanks to the many partners who helped with data collection.

Photo: Yellow-billed cuckoo eating a caterpillar. Photo by Andrew Weitze/Creative Commons. https://flic.kr/p/XkJsxX

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
09/11/2020

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Today we remember all those who tragically lost their lives on September 11, 2001. We honor the brave souls who sacrificed to protect our freedom and the innocent people who lost friends, family, and neighbors.

#Honor911 #September11

Photo: Bald eagle by USFWS

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
09/11/2020

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

On 9/11, we lost one of our own: Richard Guadagno. He was an exemplary biologist, national wildlife refuge manager, and law enforcement officer. Richard is one of the heroes who sacrificed his life on United Flight 93 that day: http://ow.ly/859850BnM2H & http://ow.ly/VoFP50BnM36

#Honor911 #September11 #UnitedFlight93

Photo of Richard Guadagno

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
09/10/2020

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Increased rainfall and cooler temperatures tell the ringed salamander that it’s time to breed. These secretive salamanders make their way to ponds where hundreds may gather through early November. Each female may lay more than 30 eggs! This species is primarily found in the Ozarks and Ouachitas.

Photo: Ringed salamander courtesy of Peter Paplanus/Creative Commons. https://flic.kr/p/CGByuE

The American burying beetle, North America’s largest carrion beetle, is recovering. Population numbers are higher, and a...
09/03/2020

The American burying beetle, North America’s largest carrion beetle, is recovering. Population numbers are higher, and adequate protections are in place thanks to the efforts of a wide array of partners across its range. In 1989, the beetle was known in only two locations – Oklahoma and Block Island, Rhode Island. Now, the beetle is known to exist in eight states, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is downlisting it from endangered to threatened under the Endangered Species Act.

Additional information on the ABB is available at https://www.fws.gov/southwest/es/oklahoma/ABB_Add_Info.htm

Where have you seen these rabbits?
09/02/2020

Where have you seen these rabbits?

The desert cottontail lives in arid areas of the western United States, including sagebrush country. It’s found from Montana down to Texas, and in parts of California and Nevada. These rabbits dart about up to 15 miles per hour in a zigzag pattern to get away from predators.

You’re most likely to see one in early morning or late in the afternoon or evening. Have you spotted any rabbits lately?

#DesertCottontail #Rabbit #Wyoming

Photo: A desert cottontail spotted in Wyoming by Pedro 'Pete' Ramirez, Jr./#USFWS

Anahuac, McFaddin, and Texas Point National Wildlife Refuges along the Texas Gulf Coast received little damage from Hurr...
09/01/2020
Home - Anahuac - U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Anahuac, McFaddin, and Texas Point National Wildlife Refuges along the Texas Gulf Coast received little damage from Hurricane Laura. Areas and lands that were closed during the hurricane have re-opened. All previous COVID-19 closures remain in effect. Please visit refuge websites for visitor information.

Anahuac National Wildlife Refuge
https://www.fws.gov/refuge/anahuac/

McFaddin National Wildlife Refuge
https://www.fws.gov/refuge/mcfaddin/

Texas Point National Wildlife Refuge
https://www.fws.gov/refuge/texas_point/

Anahuac NWR has temporarily changed operations in response to the COVID-19 outbreak. Some refuge lands are closed to the public.

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
08/28/2020

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Who’s ready to dash into the weekend? The pronghorn is North America’s fastest land mammal – adults can run nearly 60 miles per hour. Pronghorn fawns are born in spring and their mothers care for them through their first year. When they are first born, pronghorn young hide in vegetation while their mothers find food – within several days, however, baby pronghorn can run faster than people! By summer, they forage for food with their mothers and other young pronghorn.

#Fawn #Wyoming

Photo: Pronghorn fawn spotted Hutton Lake National Wildlife Refuge in Wyoming by Tom Koerner/USFWS.

Hurricane Laura made landfall around 1:00am CT over Lake Charles, Louisiana. Although the storm tracked slightly further...
08/27/2020
Southwest Region Weather

Hurricane Laura made landfall around 1:00am CT over Lake Charles, Louisiana. Although the storm tracked slightly further east than originally forecast, the north Texas coast received winds and rain from the storm as well as local evacuation orders. As soon as conditions are deemed safe and staff return to the area, damage assessments at Anahuac, McFaddin, and Texas Point National Wildlife Refuges will begin. These refuges remain closed until further notice.

https://www.fws.gov/southwest/hurricaneinfo/index.htm

August 25, 2020 Anahuac National Wildlife Refuge and McFaddin National Wildlife Refuge along the Texas Gulf Coast are closed due to preparations for Hurricane Laura. Refuge lands and facilities will remain closed until it is safe to reopen. Please check Refuge websites for updates.

Address


General information

Follow us on Twitter! https://twitter.com/USFWSSouthwest For the official source of information about the USFWS Southwest Region,visit our homepage at http://www.fws.gov/southwest Commenting Policy We encourage civil and constructive conversation. We never discriminate against any views, but we reserve the right to delete any of the following: --- personal attacks or otherwise violent or hateful comments --- selling or advertising --- promoting illegal activity --- off-topic posts --- personal information such as email addresses, telephone numbers, or mailing addresses If you violate these policies repeatedly, we will remove you from this page.

Opening Hours

Monday 08:00 - 16:30
Tuesday 08:00 - 16:30
Wednesday 08:00 - 16:30
Thursday 08:00 - 16:30
Friday 08:00 - 16:30

Telephone

(505) 248-6911

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Whether it's a formal response to a Federal Register notice or a comment on Facebook,the USFWS is committed to making sure that all online conversations are civil. In all our forums, we monitor comments either before they are published or shortly thereafter.

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Comments

A lions share of the recovery work for this species was carried out by citizen scientists around Tucson, Arizona, who conducted surveys from their backyards, counting the flying cheesy poofs that visted their backyard hummingbird feeders at night. Learn more about the recovery from this case study: https://usbr.maps.arcgis.com/apps/MapSeries/index.html?appid=d806143e03134ebcb0c24e23edfabce2 U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Arizona Fish and Wildlife Conservation Office - Usfws
Please stop killing wolves! Please allow the remaining Saffel pack wolves live in the wild. They need to roam free. They are essential to ecosystems.
Thank you for your recognition of LightHawk in this story: https://www.wmicentral.com/outdoors_and_gardening/record-20-captive-born-pups-cross-fostered-into-wild-mexican-wolf-packs/article_187c3fb2-f3d7-5219-9bfc-f4e1a703ec09.html - we are glad to be a partner in helping save endangered wolves!
Does anyone know when the wildlife refuge by McFadden beach will be opening up for crabbing?
I made a video for all of the shut ins who are missing the great outdoors.
I am having difficulty with property destruction from large numbers of turkey vultures roosting in the top of a stand of ponderosa pine trees located on my property. How can I make them leave. The trees are 80 to 90 feet tall.
I shot this video a year ago at the Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge of the dawn fly out of Snow Geese. This is 4 minutes of a fly out that lasted a full 30 minutes. It was one of the most spectacular wildlife spectacles I have ever seen.
Say NO to Spring Creek Ranch ~ HELP Stop Irresponsible Over Development
I don't know if I'm "allowed" to post this here, but most people are unaware of the need right now. I don't work for the Audubon Society or the National Parks, I've nothing to gain personally other than the satisfaction in knowing I'm helping to protect our ecosystem...we're all interconnected!
Last night’s colorful sunset including Ocotillo. Kofa NWR AZ.
I got these photographs recently at the Bosque del Apache NWR in New Mexico. It is high on my list of favorite places to photograph.
At all times of the year there is something to image. In the winter I love the Snow Geese and in the summer these are replaced with not just the wildlife but the water planning yields the beautiful Lilly pads with there flowers.