Wildlife Ranch

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Additionally, the listed zoos have volunteer and/or young learner opportunities. Building a naturalist intelligence enhances a learner's insights into the integrity of life and the process of life in a connected world. Tomorrow's leaders are shaped with today's learning. The depth, pattern, and accomplished insights of tomorrow's leadership are vital, for as Rachel Carson stated, 'The mistakes that are made now are made for all time. ' Throughout the nation there is an important struggle taking place. This struggle is the fight to save wildlife and the habitat they depend on for survival. There are many partners in this struggle, including the United States Fish and Wildlife Services, the Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies and state wildlife agencies. These entities have come together to practice wildlife conservation by developing a wildlife action plan or the Comprehensive Wildlife Conservation Strategy for each state. Funds are available for wildlife conservation and restoration of wildlife populations throughout America for each individual state. However, before any state can receive this funding they must have developed a "wildlife action plan" better known as the Comprehensive Wildlife Conservation Strategy, by October 1, 2005. A wildlife action plan assesses the wildlife and habitat health, identifies any problems the wildlife and habitat face and describes the actions needed to rectify the problems and conserve the wildlife and habitat in question.

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Some common birds that are sighted in the Smokies are: Northern Cardinal, Eastern Screech Owl, American Gold Finch, Yellow Throated Vireo, Wild Turkey, Orchard Oriole, Black Throated Blue Warbler, and Purple Finch. The only bird in the National Park that is listed as a "threatened" species is the Red-Cockaded Woodpecker. The most exciting and popular animal on the "to-see" list of visitors to the Great Smoky Mountains is the black bear. While certainly impressive, it is not the largest mammal in the Park. The title of largest animal in the Park goes to the Elk, which were reintroduced to the Cataloochee area of the Park in 2001 in an effort to create a habitat that more closely resembles one before humans over hunted and eliminated certain species from the area. River Otters have been reintroduced as well.