Protection of Endangered Species,
Wildlife Preservation & Protection,
Mission: Defenders of Wildlife envisions a future where diverse wildlife populations in North America are secure and thriving, sustained by a network of healthy lands and waters. | Diverse wildlife populations - Our conservation efforts are targeted at the full range of vulnerable North American biodiversity, from plants to pollinators to predators. While we do not set geographic boundaries on our work, we primarily focus on species of North America, including migratory and transboundary species that move freely across the borders or through the waters of the United States, Mexico and Canada. We recognize that we cannot protect any species without simultaneously protecting the habitats and other species on which it relies. | Secure and thriving - We are working for the day when vulnerable North American species rebound to the point that they are secure—no longer threatened with rapid decline or extinction—and thriving in robust, well-distributed populations. | Network of healthy lands and waters - Wildlife has the greatest chance of being secure and thriving if it is supported by a transnational network of public and private lands, rivers and coastal waters, core natural areas and working landscapes.
Results: Here are some highlights of Defenders of Wildlife’s accomplishments in 2019. For a more comprehensive list, please visit our Guidestar profile to view our 2019 Annual Report.
• 800,000 public comments gathered to oppose a Trump administration rewrite of ESA regulations.
• 5 testimonies given on Capitol Hill to address the unprecedented challenges facing wildlife today, from attacks on the Endangered Species Act to climate change and the extinction crisis.
• 90+ educational workshops and trainings to teach ranchers and others how to deploy fladry, foxlights and other deterrence tools to reduce human-wildlife conflicts.
• 55 bison transferred from Yellowstone National Park to Assiniboine and Sioux tribal lands at Fort Peck in Montana, marking the first relocation under a new program to divert bison from slaughter to ancestral lands.
• 37 new electric fence projects completed in our program to keep grizzly bears safe by financially helping property owners secure attractants like garbage, fruit trees, beehives and livestock.
• 1.4 million comments collected in opposition to the Trump administration’s proposal to remove federal endangered species protection for gray wolves in the Lower 48.
• 35 lawsuits moving through the courts as we fight to protect imperiled wildlife and habitat.
• 1,500 scientists co-signed Defenders’ editorial letter published in Science— one of the top scientific journals in the world— in support of increased funding for conservation of threatened and endangered species.
• 307,848 volunteers engaged with Defenders through events, projects and online actions.
• 120 million acres of Atlantic offshore waters remain off-limits to drilling, thanks to our lawsuit. | To further our progress, Defenders is implementing a bold Wildlife Defense and Restoration Campaign to meet the biodiversity and climate crises head-on. Under this campaign, we are defending wildlife, restoring key laws, policies and lands that we’ve lost and working to halt the profound threats facing our planet by investing in innovations, cutting-edge technology, and new programs and partnerships. We will:
• Mobilize to meet the legislative threats to wildlife and habitat and block anti-wildlife measures alongside our congressional allies. Our highest priority is defending the ESA from legislative attacks in addition to upholding Migratory Bird Treaty Act protections and expanding funding for wildlife protection.
• Defend our national wildlife refuges, national forests, national monuments and other lands from drilling, mining and other threats.
• Grow a new generation of wildlife supporters by establishing Defenders of Wildlife clubs on college campuses in key states.
• Lead development and implementation of coexistence measures to minimize negative human-wildlife interactions and change attitudes about living with imperiled species.
• Be a leader in applied conservation research, creating new technologies and leading on-the-ground innovations for wildlife.
Programs: Conservation and Restoration of Imperiled Biodiversity in North America:
Defenders of Wildlife focuses on the conservation of imperiled species and keystone or umbrella species that help restore the integrity and health of ecosystems. Our focus on wildlife and habitat conservation and safeguarding of biodiversity defines our important niche in the environmental and conservation community. Long known for our leadership on endangered species issues, our programs emphasize imperiled species and their habitat throughout North America because of the irreparable loss that species extinction represents. We believe in the inherent value of wildlife and the natural world. | Mobilization of a Broader Constituency for Wildlife Conservation: Defenders of Wildlife implements nation-wide conservation initiatives and place-based conservation programs that are rooted in the communities in which we work. We focus on strategic areas where we can have a positive impact on wildlife and landscapes. We are driven by our responsibility to mobilize and grow a movement for conservation that will endure for generations to come. We issue a quarterly publication, DEFENDERS, sent to all members, which features informative articles on important wildlife and land management conservation issues, editorial comment, and updates on current activities taken by the organization.