What We Do

Wildlife conservation is at the heart of the National Wildlife Refuge System. It drives everything on U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service lands and waters managed within the Refuge System, from the purposes for which a national wildlife refuge national wildlife refuge
A national wildlife refuge is typically a contiguous area of land and water managed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service  for the conservation and, where appropriate, restoration of fish, wildlife and plant resources and their habitats for the benefit of present and future generations of Americans.

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is established to the recreational activities offered to the resource management tools used. Using conservation best practices, the Refuge System manages Service lands and waters to help ensure the survival of native wildlife species.   

Management and Conservation

Refuges deploy a host of scientifically sound management tools to address biological challenges. These tools span active water management to wilderness character monitoring, all aimed at ensuring a balanced conservation approach to benefit both wildlife and people.  At this field station our conservation tool box includes: 

  • Planning – Comprehensive Conservation Plan 
  • Habitat Restoration  
  • Agriculture 
  • Climate Resilience  
  • Conservation Easements 
  • Compatibility Determinations 
  • Education & Outreach  
  • Fire Management 
  • Invasive Species 
  • Inventory and Monitoring 
  • Land Acquisition 
  • Law Enforcement 
  • Pesticide Management 
  • Recreation Management 
  • Species Research  
  • Water Management 

Our Projects and Research

A wide variety of projects and scientific research are occurring on the refuge. 

Hydrology Restoration and Climate Change Adaptation

The Nature Conservancy and Alligator River NWR are working together on a hydrology restoration and climate change climate change
Climate change includes both global warming driven by human-induced emissions of greenhouse gases and the resulting large-scale shifts in weather patterns. Though there have been previous periods of climatic change, since the mid-20th century humans have had an unprecedented impact on Earth's climate system and caused change on a global scale.

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adaptation project on the eastern boundary of the refuge.  This project is focused on putting infrastructure in place to allow the refuge to more closely mimic natural hydrology in that area, which will help reduce the frequency and severity of wildfires and slow salt water intrusion.  Water control structures and oyster reefs are being put in place and salt tolerant tree species are being planted as part of the project. In addition, researchers have installed equipment at sites on the refuge to monitor the intake and release of carbon in the ecosystem.

Red Wolf Recovery Program

Alligator River NWR is home to some of the few wild red wolves in the world. Red wolves are the most endangered wolf in North America. Learn more about the Red Wolf Recovery Program.