NFWF announces $1 million in grants from ConocoPhillips’ SPIRIT of Conservation program

HOUSTON (November 17, 2022) – The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF), in partnership with ConocoPhillips and the US Fish and Wildlife Service, today announced $1 million in grants that will help identify important bird habitats in nine states and be protected. The grants will mobilize nearly $7.9 million in matching contributions for a total conservation impact of $8.9 million.

The six projects announced today will conserve habitats in Alaska, South Dakota, Texas and Wyoming and collect bird data in an additional five states, including Colorado, Kansas, Montana, New Mexico and North Dakota, as well as parts of Canada and a large area of ​​the Central Flyway.

“From Alaska to Texas and beyond, these grants will help identify, protect and restore critical sites that endangered bird species depend on for breeding, resting places and wintering habitat,” said Jeff Trandahl, Executive Director and CEO of NFWF. “Each of these grants, which span a variety of habitats and regions, is based on strong voluntary partnerships that benefit both birds and ranchers, other landowners and rural communities.”

The grants were awarded through the ConocoPhillips SPIRIT of Conservation Program, a partnership between NFWF, ConocoPhillips and the US Fish and Wildlife Service. Aiming to conserve and restore populations of endangered birds, the partnership supports work to improve the quality and connectivity of key bird habitats and to accelerate innovation to understand bird conservation needs in their ranges.

“Since 2005, ConocoPhillips’ SPIRIT of Conservation program has supported more than 130 programs aimed at protecting birds throughout their lifecycle, securing critical migration routes and driving innovation that is shaping the next generation of conservation,” said Natalie Riley , Director of ConocoPhillips Community Relations. “We are proud to support this year’s program winners and their ongoing efforts to accelerate the protection of endangered birds and the preservation of vital habitats needed for their survival.”

The projects supported by the six grants announced today will:

  • Protect nearly 2,500 acres of Wyoming ranch to preserve habitat for migratory birds
  • Restore premier habitat for pheasants, pipits and other grassland species in South Dakota
  • Completed a multi-phase project to expand the Motus radiotelemetry network across the Great Plains and Chihuahuan Desert using data collected on grassland bird migration patterns to strategically prioritize habitat conservation
  • Protect 187 acres of important bird habitat, including wetlands, uplands and over a mile of creek habitat, and expand Settlers Bay Coastal Park in Alaska’s Matanuska-Susitna County
  • Restoration and enhancement of more than 1,800 acres of wetlands and 1,100 acres of native prairie for grassland birds and speckled ducks on public lands and protected areas on the Texas coast
  • Work with ranchers to improve at least 1,000 acres of grasslands for migratory and resident species through the South Texas Grassland Restoration Incentive Program

“The SPIRIT of Conservation grant program continues to provide support for high-impact research and habitat conservation projects vital to migratory birds,” said Service Director Martha Williams. “From restoring grasslands on the prairies, protecting sagebrush in the west between the mountains, protecting coastal wetlands in Alaska, to restoring wetlands and native prairies along the Texas coast, projects funded this year will benefit both wildlife as well as benefit people to a great extent.”

Since 2005, the ConocoPhillips SPIRIT of Conservation Program has awarded more than $14.9 million to 128 projects. The grantees provided an additional $46.5 million in related contributions for a total conservation impact of $61.5 million. This investment has supported the protection, restoration and enhancement of more than 528,000 hectares of habitat for birds and other wildlife.

A full list of grants awarded under ConocoPhillips’ SPIRIT of Conservation program in 2022 can be found here.

About the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation
The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF), established by Congress in 1984, protects and restores the country’s fish, wildlife, plants and habitats. Working with federal, corporate, foundation and individual partners, the NFWF has funded more than 6,000 organizations and generated a total conservation impact of $7.4 billion. Learn more at

About ConocoPhillips
ConocoPhillips is one of the world’s leading exploration and production companies, based on both production and reserves, with a globally diversified asset portfolio. Headquartered in Houston, Texas, ConocoPhillips had offices and operations in 13 countries, total assets of $94 billion and approximately 9,400 employees as of June 30, 2022. Production for the six months ended June 30, 2022 averaged 1,720,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day. and proven reserves as of December 31, 2021 were 6.1 billion barrels of oil equivalent. For more information, visit

About the US Fish and Wildlife Service
The mission of the US Fish and Wildlife Service is to work with others to conserve, protect, and enhance fish, wildlife, plants, and their habitats for the enduring benefit of the American people. We are both a leader and trusted partner in fish and wildlife conservation, known for our scientific excellence, stewardship of land and natural resources, dedicated professionals and commitment to public service. For more information about our work and the people who make it happen, visit



Rob Blumenthal, 202-857-0166, [email protected]