Our Work

For more than 80 years, the National Wildlife Federation has been uniting Americans to ensure wildlife thrive.

Our founder J. N. “Ding” Darling understood there is power in unity. In 1936 his bold vision for a nationwide constituency of conservation supporters brought together Americans from all corners of the country. Today the National Wildlife Federation is a nationwide federation with 52 state and territory affiliates and six million members and supporters.

Through habitat protection, restoration, and management, our far-reaching impact has brought numerous species back from the brink of extinction, including eagles, deer, elk, bighorn sheep, and whales. Yet in our rapidly changing world, our nation’s wildlife continue to be faced with critical challenges.

At this moment, more than a third of our country’s species are at risk of extinction in the coming decades. In the last 20 years, the monarch butterfly’s population has declined by 90 percent. America’s free-ranging bison, which once numbered 20 to 30 million, are down to fewer than 5,000 individuals. In the face of these challenges, the National Wildlife Federation remains at the forefront of the fight to tackle wildlife’s greatest threats, working collaboratively to increase wildlife populations and enhance their capacity to thrive.

As in nature, we have strength in numbers. Our ability to help wildlife is inextricably linked to the diverse efforts of the individuals and groups that support our mission. Across the country we engage with communities, schools, governments, and other organizations to build and nurture a common commitment to conservation. As we continue to grow, we’re fostering relationships with valuable partners that share our mission, working collaboratively with 2,500 organizations by 2021. We’ll engage millions more Americans in supporting our mission, including 25 million future generation conservationists in 20,000 schools across the country.

Through our hands-on programs, policy work, community outreach, and more, we forge a conservation army of millions of people that work each day to build a better future for both people and wildlife—because in saving wildlife, we save ourselves.

Pelican sitting on nest



The American landscape is an intricate patchwork of lands and waters that give our wildlife a home. We’re protecting, restoring, and connecting these vital habitats.

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America’s abundant waters are the lifeblood of our nation’s wildlife. We’re taking action to conserve, protect, and restore this valuable resource.

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Heron standing on rocks by water
Mountain Lion lying in grass

Wildlife Conservation


The value of American wildlife spans many realms. We’re taking critical and timely steps to reverse their decline and increase their numbers over the next 30 years.

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Healthy environments support healthy wildlife. Twenty-first century threats to our environment—including climate inequity and a warming climate—threaten wildlife and people alike.

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Melting ice with mountains in the background
aerial image of a farm in Massachusetts

Our Lands


Our nation's diverse and wondrous lands provide invaluable resources. We’re creating bold, future-focused strategies for managing these important spaces.

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Saving America’s wildlife strengthens the fabric of our democracy and increases prosperity for future generations. Join our conservation army to protect wildlife.

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Two hikers on a trail wearing backpacks
black family in a field

Environmental Justice


Our work intentionally prioritizes, amplifies, and includes the policy solutions, views, and voices of Black, Latinx, Indigenous, Asian and Pacific Islanders, and lower wealth communities that have been impacted the most by discriminatory practices.

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Where We Work

More than one-third of U.S. fish and wildlife species are at risk of extinction in the coming decades. We're on the ground in seven regions across the country, collaborating with 52 state and territory affiliates to reverse the crisis and ensure wildlife thrive.

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Regional Centers and Affiliates