Fish and Wildlife Management

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Resources include the Fish and Wildlife Management merit badge worksheet in PDF format Adobe Acrobat PDF and Word format Microsoft Word DOC document, links, and cross-references to related badges and awards.
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Fish and Wildlife Management merit badge
Status: Elective
Created: 1972
Replaced: Wildlife Management
BSA Advancement ID: 051
Requirements revision: 2017
Latest pamphlet revision: 2014


Wildlife management is the science and art of managing the wildlife—both animals and fish—with which we share our planet. Maintaining the proper balance and the dynamics that go with it requires humankind's attention. We use this stewardship tool to help minimize or eradicate the possibility of extinction of any given species. We want our descendants to have the opportunity to experience the same animal diversity that we now enjoy.

Fish and Wildlife Management merit badge requirements

  1. Describe the meaning and purposes of fish and wildlife conservation and management.
  2. List and discuss at least three major problems that continue to threaten your state's fish and wildlife resources.
  3. Describe some practical ways in which everyone can help with the fish and wildlife effort.
  4. List and describe five major fish and wildlife management practices used by managers in your state.
  5. Do ONE of the following:
    a. Construct, erect, and check regularly at least two artificial nest boxes (wood duck, bluebird, squirrel, etc.) and keep written records for one nesting season.
    b. Construct, erect, and check regularly bird feeders and keep written records of the kinds of birds visiting the feeders.
    c. Develop and implement a fishery improvement project or a backyard wildlife habitat improvement project. Share the results with your counselor.
    d. Design and construct a wildlife blind near a game trail, water hole, salt lick, bird feeder, or birdbath and take good photographs or make sketches from the blind of any combination of 10 wild birds, mammals, reptiles, or amphibians.
  6. Do ONE of the following:
    a. Observe and record 25 species of wildlife. Your list may include mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, and fish. Write down when and where each animal was seen.
    b. List the fish and wildlife species in your state that are classified as endangered, threatened, exotic, non-native, game species, furbearers, or migratory game birds. Discuss with your counselor management practices in place or being developed for at least three of these species.
    c. Start a scrapbook of North American fish and wildlife. Insert markers to divide the book into separate parts for mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, and fish. Collect articles on such subjects as life histories, habitat, behavior, and feeding habits on all of the five categories and place them in your notebook accordingly. Articles and pictures may be taken from newspapers or science, nature and outdoor magazines; or from other sources including the Internet (with your parent's permission). Enter at least five articles on mammals, five on birds, five on reptiles, five on amphibians, and five on fish. Put each animal on a separate sheet in alphabetical order. Include pictures whenever possible.
  7. Do ONE of the following:
    a. Determine the age of five species of fish from scale samples or identify various age classes of one species in a lake and report the results.
    b. Conduct a creel census on a small lake to estimate catch per unit effort.
    c. Examine the stomach contents of three fish and record the findings. It is not necessary to catch any fish for this option. You must[1] visit a cleaning station set up for fishermen or find another, similar alternative.
    d. Make a freshwater aquarium. Include at least four species of native plants and four species of animal life, such as whirligig beetles, freshwater shrimp, tadpoles, water snails, and golden shiners. After 60 days or observation, discuss with your counselor the life cycles, food chains, and management needs you have recognized. After completing requirement 7d to your counselor's satisfaction, with your counselor's assistance, check local laws to determine what you should do with the specimens you have collected.
  8. Using resources found at the library and in periodicals, books, and the internet (with your parent’s permission), learn about three different positions held by fisheries and/or wildlife professionals. Find out the education and training requirements for each position.
  1. The last sentence of requirement 7c has read "You may visit ..." in the merit badge pamphlet, and "You must visit ..." in the Boy Scout Requirements book since it was added in 2004.

The official source for the information shown in this is:
Boy Scout Requirements, 2018 Edition (BSA Supply SKU #641568)

View the change list (history) of these requirements. The text of these requirements may be locked. In that case, they can only be edited
by an administrator.
Please note any errors found in the above requirements on this article's Talk Page.


Worksheet A FREE workbook for Fish and Wildlife Management is available here! (PDF or Word) with the maps, charts, links, diagrams, and checklists you need! Or click here to print just the Fish and Wildlife Management requirements. has PDF and Word versions of workbooks for Scouts BSA ranks and merit badges, Cub Scouting ranks and adventures, and STEM Nova awards.

Fish and Wildlife Management merit badge is an option for the National Outdoor Badge for Conservation.
The Fish and Wildlife Management merit badge is an option for the Let It Grow!, Splash!, Harris Bronze Supernova, and Edison Silver Supernova STEM Nova Awards.
  1. Fish and Wildlife Management is one of the elective merit badges for the World Conservation Award for Scouts BSA.
  2. Fish and Wildlife Management is one of the elective merit badges for the William T. Hornaday awards for Scouts BSA.
  3. Fish and Wildlife Management is a popular summer camp merit badge.

Requirement resources

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Further information might be found on the talk page.

Related awards

Ecology-related awards

See also

Scouts BSA portal
Venturing portal
Sea Scout portal
General Merit Badge information

External links

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