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North American Conservation Education Strategy
"Connecting More Americans to Nature"

Conservation Education Strategy Image The award-winning North American Conservation Education Strategy (CE Strategy) delivers unified, research-based core concepts and messages about fish and wildlife conservation, translated into K-12 academic standards to shape students' environmental literacy, stewardship and outdoor skills. The CE Strategy is a blueprint for identifying what every citizen should know, feel and do related to fish and wildlife conservation, including the sustainable enjoyment and use of those resources.

Designed by experts from state fish and wildlife agencies, the CE Strategy strengthens and unifies the conservation efforts of the Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies ( (AFWA) member agencies and partners.


Top Conservation Core Concepts and Key Messages

The following Top 8 Core Concepts state fundamental facts that every citizen should understand about the conservation of fish and wildlife and related resources.

  • The health and well-being of humans depends on the quality and diversity of fish and wildlife and their environment.

  • In North America fish and wildlife are public trust resources managed by governmental agencies. Within the U.S., state fish and wildlife management is funded primarily through hunting, fishing and trapping licenses and through federal excise taxes collected from the sale of hunting, target shooting, and fishing equipment and motor boat fuels.

  • Conserving biodiversity is important. Everyone impacts fish and wildlife and their habitats and as human populations grow, impacts on natural resources increase. Sustainable natural resources depend on the support of an informed and responsible citizenry.

  • Loss and degradation of habitat are the greatest problems facing fish and wildlife; therefore, enhancing and protecting habitat is critical to managing and conserving them.

  • Fish and wildlife can be conserved and restored through science based management which considers the needs of humans as well as those of fish and wildlife.

  • Regulations are necessary for natural resource conservation. Regulated hunting, fishing, and trapping are important tools for managing some wildlife populations and habitats.

  • Since most wildlife live on private lands, private landowners play an important role in sustaining and improving habitat.

  • Wildlife-based activities, such as hunting, fishing, viewing, and photography provide people with millions of days of outdoor recreation each year and generate billions of dollars for the economy.

New Jersey Conservation Education Top Core Concepts (pdf, 58kb)

These facts are part of a larger set of Core Concepts developed for the Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies' North American Conservation Education Strategy. The full set of Core Concepts is available on AFWA's web site at, Focus Area Conservation Education.
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North American CE Strategy Tool Kit for Achieving Excellence

The Conservation Education Strategy Tool Kit contains resources developed by the Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies to support formal teachers and conservation educators who offer fish and wildlife based programs.

The following link provides an overview of the CE Strategy toolkit products: North American Conservation Education Strategy Flyer (pdf, 290kb)

The complete CE Strategy Toolkit is available on AFWA's web site at:

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Copyright © State of New Jersey, 1996-2012
Department of Environmental Protection
P.O. Box 402
Trenton, NJ 08625-0402

Last Updated: February 16, 2012