Endangered resources license plates
help drive the next conservation success
Your purchase of an Endangered Resources license plate helps protect and restore Wisconsin's rare wildlife species and habitats. The $25 annual donation you make to keep the plate is critical for this important conservation work.
Revenues from plate sales, along with tax form donations and state matching funds, have accounted for as much as 40% of funding for endangered species conservation in some years, and has supported the recovery of bald eagles, trumpeter swans and other species while preventing hundreds of other species from vanishing from Wisconsin.
Frequently asked questions
Read the FAQ below for more information about the Endangered Resources license plates.
- When and where can I buy the Endangered Resources license plate
You can buy a bald eagle or wolf design plate at any time from the Wisconsin Department of Transportation. No need to wait for your renewal notice or until your existing plate wears out. However, making this switch during registration renewal is most economical because DOT retains your original registration date. Thus, switching plates in the middle of your renewal cycle may mean you are asked twice in one year for the $25 donation.
Download and fill out Form MV2858 and mail it in, or fill it out at the DMV customer service center near you. The plate will be mailed to you by the Department of Transportation.
- How much does the Endangered Resources plate cost?
$25 annual donation
The Endangered Resources plate provides for a $25 annual donation to the Endangered Resources Fund that pays for work to protect rare plant and animals and state natural areas. Your total bill, however, depends on where you are in the renewal cycle and if you want to customize your tag plate.
For license buyers with current registrations, there is a $15 issuance fee that goes to the Department of Transportation on top of the $25 donation. So for most people, buying the eagle plate will cost you $40 overall.
If you buy an eagle plate at the same time you renew your registration or within three months of your renewal date, you will pay the regular $85 annual car registration fee (more for trucks and other vehicles qualifying to use special plates) and the $40 on top of that.
Once you have your Endangered Resources plate, it’s important to know that your renewal rate will thereafter reflect a $25 annual donation to the Endangered Resources Fund until you discontinue your use of the plate. If you choose to have a personalized message on your new plate, you will have an additional $15 annual fee added to your renewal.
- How do I know if my registration is within three months of renewal?
See when your registration is up for renewal by looking at the registration card you receive and are required to carry in your car.
- How will my $25 donation be used?
Your $25 donation to the Endangered Resources Fund is tax-deductible if you itemize on your taxes. It pays for staff for the DNR’s Natural Heritage Conservation Program and activities to protect and restore native plants and animals and state natural areas. Our annual report shows how the DNR’s Natural Heritage Conservation staff carry out this responsibility, which includes caring for 70 mammals, 56 species of frogs, turtles and snakes, about 2,400 plant species and more than 100 distinct natural plant communities. Your donation is not used for wolf management purposes.
To meet this responsibility, Natural Heritage Conservation staff work with citizens, private landowners and businesses to count, locate and manage nongame species and plants; provide regulatory protection to endangered and threatened species; provide annual funding to nature centers, conservation organizations and others to help them build their capacity to engage volunteers to collect data to help NHC priority projects; and acquire, designate and manage a system of natural areas that protect the very best remnants of Wisconsin’s distinct natural communities and provide refuge for native species. Staff also work with private landowners to provide technical and financial assistance to help them manage their land to preserve and restore native species.
- Have more questions that we didn't cover?
See the DMV's frequently asked questions webpage for more information on fees or if you want to change from the wolf or badger Endangered Resources designs to the eagle design.