Skip navigational links  About Us Contact FS FAQ'S Newsroom
[Header with links to]: USDA Forest Service
[Header]: logos and links to USDA and Forest Service
link to USDA homepagelink to Forest Service homepage

 WFW Home

Get Wild!

Wild Ecology Unit
 Endangered Species

 Appeals & Litigation
 Acronyms & Terms
 Continuing Education
 Career Information
 Publications & Literature

 Public Participation
 For the Kids
 WFRP Management System
 Burned Area Emergency Rehabilitation (BAER)

 WFW Site Index
 Contact WFW

Ecology Units & Teams

Wildlife Ecology Unit

Fish & Aquatic Ecology Unit

Stream Systems Technology Center

Quick Links


Find A Photo

Watershed, Fish, Wildlife, Air & Rare Plants

A Million Bucks

What is A Million Bucks?

Million Bucks, originally conceived in 1989, is a partnership program that emphasizes management of National Forests and Grasslands to benefit deer and people’s enjoyment of deer. The basis of this program is the collaboration between the Forest Service and several partners, including the Mule Deer Foundation, Whitetails Unlimited, state agencies and other conservation groups towards conserving and restoring deer habitats to support healthy deer populations as well as recreational opportunities for the public.

Photograph by Dave Herr

Photograph. 3 mule deer on ridge in oregon. Taken by Dave Herr; USFS Find a Photo

Why is the Forest Service interested in A Million Bucks?

Millions of acres of deer habitat fall on National Forest System lands across North America. Although management of deer populations is the responsibility of the state fish and game agencies, the Forest Service contributes to deer conservation by managing the habitats upon which these deer depend. This contribution, primarily in the form of habitat restoration and conservation education, is significant due to the economic, recreational (e.g., hunting and viewing), and ecological roles deer play in our society and in environmental communities.


Million Bucks - Forest Service/Mule Deer Conservation Award - USDA Forest Service & Mule Deer Foundation

2014 recipient is Curtis Keetch; Zone Wildlife Biologist on the Grand Mesa, Uncompahgre, and Gunnison National Forests in Colorado.

2014 Mule Deer Conservation Award. This award is presented annually to a Forest Service employee for efforts in promoting partnership with the Mule Deer Foundation (MDF) for the conservation of Mule Deer and Black-tail Deer. The 2014 award went to Zone Wildlife Biologist Curtis Keetch on the Grand Mesa, Uncompahgre, and Gunnison National Forests in Colorado. Curtis received the award for his efforts to complete the first ever Stewardship Agreement with MDF in Region 2 for the Uncompahgre Stewardship Project on the Norwood-Ouray Ranger District. His efforts led to a Region-wide Steward Agreement between Region 2 and the Foundation. These efforts implemented the recently updated MOU between the Forest Service and MDF.

Photograph: District Ranger George Garcia is holding the traveling Mule Deer Foundation & Forest Service award (left side).  Curtis Keetch is holding his individual Mule Deer Foundation/Forest Service award of a bronze statue (right side).

Caption: George Garcia, District Ranger (Left) holds the traveling MDF award which Curtis keeps for 1 year until the next recipient is selected. Curtis Keetch, award recipient (right), holds his individual award.

WAFWA Mule Deer Working Group Publications

Methods for Monitoring Mule Deer Populations (PDF 3.9 MB)

Energy Development Guidelines for Mule Deer (PDF 4.8 MB)

Tangible results from partnership with Mule Deer Foundation and other partners.

The deer is near a pinion-juniper thinning and wildlife water development on the Lincoln National Forest that was funded by several partners.

Photograph: Big mule deer with very big antlers.

How Can You Help?

You can help by supporting management of habitats for deer and other wildlife that depend upon the National Forests and Grasslands. This can be done by providing funds to our partners supporting projects and programs that will directly benefit deer and their habitats, volunteering time on such projects, and expressing support for these activities and efforts in your community and more broadly.


General Biology and Species Information

Two species of deer, native to North America, live on National Forests and Grasslands: mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus) and whitetail deer (Odocoileus virginianus). Within each species, there are regional variants that exhibit sufficient variability to warrant subspecies designation. These relatives include the Pacific coastal (or Columbian) blacktail (O. h. columbianus) and Sitka blacktail of Alaska (O. h. sitkensis) for mule deer and the southwestern Coues deer (O .v. covesi) and Florida Key deer (O. v. clavium) for whitetail deer. Read the book The Deer of North America or visit for more information on the different deer species.

Photograph by Kreig Rasmussen

A Million Bucks Coordinator for the Forest Service

Photograph: fawn in sage. photo by Krieg Rasmussen

George C. Garcia - Coordinator
USDA-Forest Service
Uinta-Wasatch-Cache National Forest/Spanish Fork Ranger District
44 West 400 North
Spanish Fork, UT 84660
Phone: 801-342-5261

Photograph by Kreig Rasmussen


Disclaimers | Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) | Privacy Notice

Watershed, Fish, Wildlife, Air & Rare Plants (WFW)
Washington, D.C. Office
Author: Shelly Witt, National Continuing Education Coordinator, WFW staff
Phone: 435-881-4203
Expires: none

Photo Credits

USDA Forest Service
P.O. Box 96090
Washington, D.C. 20090-6090
(202) 205-8333