Expanding Hunting & Fishing at Refuges & Hatcheries

On April 9th the Administration announced a proposal to expand hunting and fishing across more than 2.3 million acres at 97 wildlife refuges and 9 national fish hatcheries. This proposed rule would create approximately 900 distinct new hunting and fishing opportunities. A chance to hunt or fish an additional species at a particular refuge or hatchery is defined as an new opportunity.

The proposed rule also continues the Administration’s effort toward revising U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s hunting and fishing regulations so they more closely align with the state regulations where a refuge is located. When additional regulations are need for safety or conservation compatibility reasons then the Service will try to ensure that these regulations are consistent on all refuges in a particular state.

To see if your local refuge or hatchery will be impacted by this proposed change go to the Federal Register at https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2020/04/09/2020-06258/2020-2021-station-specific-hunting-and-sport-fishing-regulations. Scroll down the document to Table 1 to see if and how your refuge or hatchery will be affected or view an online list and map.

You, as a member of the public, are encouraged to comment on this proposed rule. To submit your comments go to the Federal Register https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2020/04/09/2020-06258/2020-2021-station-specific-hunting-and-sport-fishing-regulations and click on the “Submit A Formal Comment” green tab. The deadline for submitting your comments is Monday, June 8, 2020.

The Service’s press release about this rule is available at https://bit.ly/2Vno6rm.

Photo credit: Chuck Traxler/USFWS

#GivingTuesdayNow, a Global Day of Giving and Unity

The Giving Tuesday organization has announced #GivingTuesdayNow, a global day of giving and unity set to take place on May 5, 2020, as an emergency response to the unprecedented need caused by COVID-19. The day is designed to drive an influx of generosity, citizen engagement, business and philanthropy activation, and support for communities and nonprofits around the world. Communities are being encouraged to act on behalf of first responders, as well as the world’s other – often forgotten – frontline workers: the nonprofits and community organizations that feed, house, educate, and nurture neighbors impacted by the global pandemic.

As you likely realize, many nonprofits are currently in dire financial straits with needs that may jeopardize their ability to survive, much less serve those who most need their help. So, unless your Friends organization can describe a compelling need, this may not be the optimal time to launch a fundraising effort or even do heavy promotion in preparation for May 5. However, since Giving Tuesday will draw donor attention worldwide, you may want to be prepared with a message of support and even, as appropriate, invite your supporters to visit their nearby national wildlife refuge or park for quality time in nature—while “social distancing,” of course. You may also want to express your gratitude to supporters for their financial gifts and volunteer time since normal activities will resume at some point, and when the time comes, Friends want to be prepared to support their USFWS partners with event and project funding as in the past. .

Here are some ways you can help:

  • Give again to causes you love.
  • Learn about and support nonprofits and schools that are stepping up to help support those whose lives are affected by this crisis.
  • Search for your favorite causes or find a new one to get to know.
  • Help your local partners who are more directly involved with COVID 19 response to publicize their need and encourage your members and supporters to help however they can on Giving Tuesday, May 5, 2020.
  • Find out whether other virtual fundraising events may be planned in your state. For example, in Minnesota, #GiveAtHomeMN, a virtual fundraising event by GiveMN.org, will be taking place May 1 – 8 for nonprofits and schools across the state. All registered Minnesota nonprofits receive a free online giving page at GiveMN.org, and a fee rebate will be in effect through May 31.

Find out about Giving Tuesday here:


The Federal Coronavirus Relief Bills and Nonprofits

The National Council of Nonprofits has pulled together information for nonprofit organizations about the various coronavirus relief bills. Some of these bills might help a few Friends organizations. The Council is working on providing the nonprofit section with the latest information. Here are the resources the Council is providing.

We encourage you to check out all of their resources at https://www.councilofnonprofits.org/nonprofits-and-coronavirus-covid-19.