October 02, 2013
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Suspends Operations During Federal Shutdown
By Ben Romans
A press release from the U.S. Fish & Wildlife service said that because of the shutdown of the federal government caused by the lapse in appropriations, the agency will suspend most programs and operations, including public access to all National Wildlife Refuges and all activities on refuge lands including hunting and fishing.
"Closing off public access to our national wildlife refuges and public lands is the last thing we want to do, but is consistent with operations called for during a government shutdown" said Director of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Dan Ashe. "This is difficult news for the families, birdwatchers, hunters and anglers, and recreationists who enjoy the great outdoors on the refuges – as well as for the many local businesses who depend on the tourism and outdoor recreation economy they generate. I think it's most difficult for the thousands of furloughed Service employees who are impacted in carrying out their mission to protect our nation's resources and providing for their families."
Main impacts include:
Services and programs that will remain operational fall into the following exempted categories:
Because the website will not be maintained, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service website will be down for the duration of the shutdown. Additional information will be available at www.DOI.gov/shutdown as well as OPM.gov, which will contain information about the government's operating status on Tuesday, Oct. 1, 2013, and the days following.
The agency also suspended activity on its Twitter feed, the last post on October 1 reading "Due to a lapse of government funding, this account will not be active until further notice."