18 January 2012 New Wildlife Refuge Established in Florida Posted by: James Navarro | 2 comments | Share: The Everglades Headwaters National Wildlife Refuge and Conservation Area was created today. BREAKING: Interior Secretary Ken Salazar announced the creation of the Everglades Headwaters National Wildlife Refuge and Conservation Area in Florida today. The refuge aims to conserve the Everglades’ headwaters and fish and wildlife and to preserve the community’s ranching heritage. “The creation of the Everglades Headwaters National Wildlife Refuge and Conservation Area is not only critical for restoring imperiled wildlife, like Florida panthers and whooping cranes that depend on the region, but also for preserving a way of life for the ranchers who have made their living off the land for decades,” said Jamie Rappaport Clark, president and CEO of Defenders of Wildlife. The agency envisions expanding the small refuge to one day span some 150,000 acres north of Lake Okeechobee in south Florida, according to the Fish and Wildlife Service’s website. Florida panther, courtesy George Gentry, USFWS The majority of it will be protected through conservation easements purchased from private landowners, who would retain ownership of the land, as well as the right to raise cattle or crops, according to the Interior Department’s news release. But the easements would protect the land from development, officials said. “This endeavor is the perfect example of the payoff when diverse shareholders come together with a common conservation goal, and sets the stage for future collaboration to preserve Florida’s natural assets,” Clark said. 2 Responses to “New Wildlife Refuge Established in Florida” Lori January 18th, 2012 This sounds great — I do have another question, what about “hunting”? Do the landowners (or anyone) have rights to hunting? Defenders of Wildlife January 19th, 2012 Thanks for the question, Lori. Many national wildlife refuges do permit some amount of hunting in addition to wildlife observation, photography, environmental education, interpretation, and fishing. The Everglades refuge will also permit it. Post Your Comment Click here to cancel reply. Name (required) Mail (required) (will not be published) You May also be interested in Wolf Weekly Wrap-up In Court for Wyoming’s Wolves; Things Get Worse in Idaho; Delisting Comment Period Closed; Seattle Citizen Hearing A Shark Workshop As part of an international effort to cut down on the devastating impact of the fin trade on shark species, Defenders helped organize a shark identification workshop in Brazil,attended by officials from countries all over the continent. Washington Wolf Supporters Howl for Wolf Recovery & Oppose Stripping Federal Protections In advance of U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s decision to strip federal protection for most gray wolves in the contiguous 48 states, the Agency denied Washingtonians the opportunity to testify in opposition by refusing to hold a public hearing in the Pacific Northwest. This did not go over well in Washington! In fact, over 100 citizens decided to host their own hearing on Sunday December 15th to oppose stripping federal protections for gray wolves.