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Ohio Department of Natural Resources: Division of Wildlife

Mission Statement

To conserve and improve fish and wildlife resources and their habitats for sustainable use and appreciation by all.

History of the Division of Wildlife

  • To accommodate people and industries, Ohio’s early natural habitats were altered significantly. Habitats were destroyed to create farmland, or they were polluted with no regard for the wildlife. The animals that once thrived in these habitats have had to adapt, migrate, or die.
  • The Ohio state legislature in 1873 formed the Ohio Fish Commission, which later became the Ohio Fish and Game Commission. The agency enforced newly established wildlife laws. These laws ensured animals were protected from loss of habitat and excessive fishing, hunting, and trapping.
  • Today, the wildlife agency is called the Ohio Division of Wildlife. It continues the work of protecting the fish, the wildlife, and their habitats.
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