Wildlife and fish contribute to healthy ecosystems, provide income to landowners and businesses, and afford recreational and aesthetic benefits to society. Each year, more than 80 million Americans fish, hunt, or watch wildlife. Some wildlife can pose problems to society, causing on average $1 billion in damage to American agriculture. NIFA programs seek to achieve a balance that sustains wildlife populations while minimizing wildlife impacts on human endeavors through research, education, and extension.
NIFA provides funds and coordination for research, education, and extension programs at land-grant universities. This results in new research-based knowledge on wildlife ecology and management, training of future professionals in the field, education of landowners and the public on wildlife issues, and improved management practices. High-priority and emerging issues include biodiversity conservation, habitat management, and control of wildlife damage, invasive species, and disease transmission to humans and livestock.