A cloudy blue sky and trees with yellow leaves are reflected in calm waters.
A cloudy blue sky and trees with yellow leaves are reflected in calm waters.
A calm fall day at Gavins Point National Fish Hatchery. Photo by Sam Stukel/USFWS.

Here are five ways you can get out and enjoy a national fish hatchery near you!

1. Take a hike in the crisp fall air.

Leadville Nation Fish Hatchery — Leadville, Colorado


closeup of bat face
closeup of bat face
Hoary bat. Photo by Daniel Neal/Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license.

Some bat species will migrate long distances in the fall to warmer climates where insects are more plentiful. In the Pacific Northwest, the hoary bat (Lasiurus cinereus) is known for its long-distance travels; in one study this species was found to fly more than 1,000 km during its migration. Not much is known on the migratory behavior of these bats such as where they end up spending their winters, but we do know that their migration path crosses into areas where wind energy is being developed. Across the country, hoary bats have been found dead at wind energy facilities. Luckily, many researchers are working with the wind energy industry to find ways to eliminate or reduce the number of deaths of these migratory bats. …


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Desert National Wildlife Refuge near Las Vegas, Nevada. Photo by J. Contois/USFWS.

Nevada is famous for its casinos and nightlife, but not necessarily for its striking geography and biodiversity (and it should be, to be honest).

Here are 10 things you didn’t know about plants, wildlife and their habitats in the Silver State.

10. Mountains.


A bat hangs upside down and looks into the camera
A bat hangs upside down and looks into the camera
Mariana fruit bat. Photo by Anne Brooke/USFWS

Halloween, for many people, means it’s time for all things spooky, creepy and scary (although, some of us find excuses to celebrate those things all year). While Halloween legends may have us thinking about the holiday’s horror heavyweights like werewolves, vampires and bats (oh my!), bats are actually responsible for some of the highlights of the season, like pumpkin spice and witches brew.


Content warning for arachnophobes: This story contains images of spiders! If you fear spiders, you might not want to continue reading. Enter if you dare!

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Tarantula by National Park Service

It’s fall in colorful Colorado. At dusk, the moon will soon replace the sun. You are taking a stroll outside in the crisp, cool air when something large, brown and hairy with eight long legs scuttles across the street. Would you be scared?

You shouldn’t be! It’s just a male Oklahoma brown tarantula (Aphonopelma hentzi) (aka Texas or Missouri brown tarantula), out looking for love. You are witnessing the epic journey thousands of male tarantulas make every year. …


If you build it, they will come… eventually

By Sandy Vissman, San Clemente Island Coordinator and Jessica D’Ambrosio, public affairs specialist, Carlsbad FWO

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California least tern chick cover under chick shelter at San Dieguito Lagoon. Photo courtesy of Brian Foster/Volant Research Enterprises

The California least tern (Sterna antillarum browni) faces many hurdles for successful nesting and chick production, and this year was no exception. A strong red tide, predators and recreational trespassing affected least terns at sites throughout California. Despite all odds, about 10–15 adult tern pairs, along with their 10 offspring, were observed at San Dieguito Lagoon this past spring, marking the first ever nesting success at two human-made sites.


Catching Butterflies in the Pacific Northwest

By Zach Radmer, FWS Fish and Wildlife Biologist

2 pics: One showing man with net next to sign; one shows him looking at small orange butterfly on hand
2 pics: One showing man with net next to sign; one shows him looking at small orange butterfly on hand
Zach Radmer, biologist and butterfly enthusiast, looks at the copper. Photo by Jerrmaine Treadwell

“Swoosh!” My net lay still, a colorful quarry perhaps captured after a brief sprint along the trail. Admittedly I’m more excited than you would think. It’s not every day that you catch something new. I don’t think people know that most butterflies get away. The large and sun-warmed individuals are highly motivated and will easy outpace you even into a headwind. I have carried a net for miles and caught nothing but mosquitos. But this time it’s a lustrous copper (Lycaena cupreus) that sports bright orange wings covered in dark black spots. …


One African American Family’s Story about Their Love of the Outdoors and Hunting

Left: man in black vest, knit cap that says Maryland Hunter Education Instructor. Right: Young man in water w/ goose
Left: man in black vest, knit cap that says Maryland Hunter Education Instructor. Right: Young man in water w/ goose
Gary Monroe (left) and son Javier. All photos courtesy the Monroes

Waterfowl hunting is an incredibly important part of our conservation history and an essential part of the work we do in the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Migratory Bird Program. We manage the Federal Duck Stamp Program, one of the most successful conservation programs ever created. Since 1934, this conservation revenue stamp, required for every waterfowl hunter, has raised more than $1 billion (yes that is billion with a “b”) in sales that has been used to conserve more than 6 million acres of wetlands. We also collect data through monitoring programs to set hunting limits for waterfowl hunters every year. …

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U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

We’re dedicated to the conservation, protection and enhancement of fish, wildlife and plants, and their habitats.

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