Wildlife Conservation and Management Benefits

We can thank forward-thinking early conservationists – led by hunters and fishermen – that the goal of preserving wildlife and their habitats through sound science and active management is encoded into Michigan law.

The overarching goal of managing our fish and wildlife so that their populations are sustained forever has clearly served the people of our state well. Michigan’s abundant wildlife, diverse habitats and natural beauty have been central to our way of life for decades, and outdoors lovers of all types are committed to preserving our rich natural tapestry for future generations.

Management of wildlife involves:

  • Wildlife biologists and conservationists work to restore the populations of rare, threatened or endangered species, such as moose, Kirtland’s warblers, piping plover or the Mitchell’s satyr butterfly. Each species faces unique challenges and threats that are addressed by people dedicated to ensuring they continue to have a presence in Michigan. The bald eagle and peregrine falcon are success stories for all species’ recovery efforts.
  • Careful population tracking and monitoring are conducted to keep populations sustainable and long-lasting.
  • Well-managed wildlife populations also do not grow too large for their habitat and ecosystem. Too many of a species can, for example, negatively affect local plants, causing an imbalance between wildlife and within the environment. For instance, too many deer can compromise an area by eating too much of certain plants that are the preferred nesting type of local songbirds.
  • Biologists and conservationists monitor and track wildlife to determine their population size and allow for hunting and other activities to keep populations in balance with habitat and humans.
  • Chronic wasting disease (CWD), bovine tuberculosis, West Nile virus and avian influenza are all diseases that Michigan wildlife species are vulnerable to contracting. Conservationists and biologists work to prevent the occurrence and spread of these potentially deadly diseases, which could destabilize local and statewide environments in a short period.

A variety of best management practices are used to keep our wildlife in balance. Learn more.