Come volunteer at the Refuge!
The Detroit River International Wildlife Refuge represents a new model for conservation by restoring vital habitats in an urban area through innovative public-private partnerships. If this sounds like a fun and challenging opportunity, then consider becoming a volunteer at the Refuge. Click here to learn more.
The 2018 Annual Report is now available to be viewed and downloaded online.
Click here to go to the report.
2018 John D. Dingell Friend of the Refuge Awards
On April 17, 2018, at Gibraltar City Hall, two John D. Dingell Friend of the Refuge Awards were given in recognition of leadership and dedication to conservation on the Detroit River and western Lake Erie Basin. This year’s honorees were Richard E. Mills (Individual Award) and The Nature Conservancy (Non-Profit Award).
Read more about the awards and the recipients here (PDF).
IWRA Chair Richard Micka, Deputy District Director Michael Klotz (representing Congresswoman Debbie Dingell and John Dingell), Richard and Cheryl Mills, and IWRA Executive Director Joann Van Aken. The 2018 Friend of the Refuge- Individual Award was presented to Mr. Richard Mills on Tuesday, April 17 at Gibraltar City Hall. Photo: Mark Messer
IWRA Chair Richard Micka, Deputy District Director Michael Klotz (representing Congresswoman Debbie Dingell and John Dingell), TNC Restoration Director Chris May, IWRA Executive Director Joann Van Aken, and TNC Associate State Director Patrick Doran. The 2018 Friend of the Refuge- Non-Profit Award was presented to The Nature Conservancy on Tuesday, April 17 at Gibraltar City Hall. Photo: Mark Messer
John D. Dingell Friend of the Refuge Awards for 2017
On May 15, 2017 at the Gibraltar (MI) City Hall, the IWRA announced the winners of this year's John D. Dingell Friend of the Refuge awards, in recognition of leadership and dedication to conservation on the Detroit River and the western Lake Erie Basin. The honorees were Dr. Russell G. Kreis, Jr. (individual honoree); Michigan Sea Grant (non-profit honoree), and CN Rail (corporate honoree). Read more about each recipient and the awards. Click on the photos to enlarge.
New Refuge Visitor Center named for John D. Dingell, Jr.
Detroit News photo by Todd McInturf
At a ceremony January 14, 2017, officials with the US Fish & Wildlife Service's Detroit River International Wildlife Refuge announced that the new visitor center, currently under construction, will be named for former US Representative John D. Dingell, Jr. Dingell, who served nearly sixty years in Congress, championed the refuge as well as a host of environmental initiatives and conservation legislation.
Download the US Fish & Wildlife Service's press release (PDF).
Read coverage from the News-Herald, the Detroit News, CBS-Detroit, and view FOX 2 Detroit's coverage.
New Regional Treaty a Boost for Migratory Birds
More than fifty people, including students from the Ralph J. Bunche Preparatory Academy, assembled on the Detroit Riverwalk to witness Metropolitan Detroit become the 29th U.S. city in the Urban Bird Treaty program. The program was established in 1999 as a collaborative effort among federal, state and local governments, non-governmental organizations, and academic institutions to create bird-friendly environments and to provide citizens the opportunities to connect with nature through birding and conservation activities.
Read more about the signing in this article from the Trenton (MI) Tribune.
Project S.N.A.P. Mosaic Mural Coming Soon
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We have received all the funding that was needed for the Project S.N.A.P. Mosaic Mural. Thank you to all who contributed; we greatly appreciate the support!
The mural will be revealed with the grand opening of the Refuge Visitor Center.
Blue Goose Bus Fund - Help students visit the Refuge!
The IWRA's Blue Goose Bus Fund will help schools and educators experience the Detroit River IWR by helping to offset the costs of bus transportation to and from the Refuge.
For more information, contact Executive Director Joann Van Aken at email@example.com or 734-692-7671.
Construction on the Fishing Pier Continues:
completion expected soon
For more photos of the design and the construction, visit the Photo Gallery page.
The 2021 Calendar of Events for the International Wildlife Refuge is now online. Check the dates for an event.