FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 27, 2014
Andy Forbes, 612-713-5364, Andrew_Forbes@fws.gov
Katie Steiger-Meister, 612-713-5317, Katie_Steiger-Meister@fws.gov
Terri Edwards, 413 253-8324, Terri_Edwards@fws.gov
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announces $960,000 for wetlands and habitat under the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Midwest Regional Director, Tom Melius, and Northeast Regional Director, Wendi Weber, jointly announced today the approval of more than $960,000 for grants aimed at protecting, restoring, and enhancing 908 acres of wetlands and wildlife habitat in Wisconsin and New York under the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative through the Joint Venture Habitat Protection and Restoration Program.
“The work accomplished by Joint Ventures draws attention to the power of working across regions with local partners to permanently protect areas that are important to our waterfowl, shorebirds and landbirds,” said Tom Melius.
The Joint Venture program strives for sustainable populations of all birds through regionally coordinated conservation actions based on the best scientific information and techniques available. Explicit bird population goals, decision tools, and an implementation plan are used to guide resources for efficient conservation delivery, research and evaluation.
“Undeveloped areas along the Great Lakes are some of the most important places in North America for migrating birds,” said Wendi Weber. “This initiative supports local land protection efforts and leverages funding to conserve the nature of the Great Lakes for wildlife and for people."
2014 funded projects include:
- The Western New York Land Conservancy was awarded $300,000 to permanently protect a 29 acre parcel through a fee-title acquisition, and create the new Stella Niagara preserve on the Niagara River.
- Mequon Farmland to Wetlands – Mequon Nature Preserve, Inc. was granted $38,000 to restore and enhance 91 acres of wetlands and associated uplands at the Mequon Nature Preserve in Ozaukee County, Wis.
- Migratory Stopover and Great Lakes Restoration – The Ozaukee Washington Land Trust was granted $300,000 to protect 650 acres across six properties located along the Lake Michigan shoreline and Milwaukee River Corridor.
- Door Peninsula Bird Habitat Protection II, North Bay Preserve, Wis. – The Nature Conservancy will be granted $250,000 to protect 98 acres across three parcels in Door County, Wis., where habitats are rapidly disappearing via coastal development.
- Big Ravine Acquisition Project – The Bayfield Regional Conservancy will be granted $72,997 to protect 40 acres of habitat adjacent to the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore in Bayfield County, Wis.
The grants were awarded under the Great Lakes Watershed Habitat and Species Restoration Initiative Grants Programs administered by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, a bureau of the Department of the Interior. The grants were funded by the President’s 2014 Budget, which provided $300 million for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency –led, interagency Great Lakes Restoration Initiative. GLRI funds were provided to the Upper Mississippi/Great Lakes and Atlantic Coast Joint Ventures to support priority bird habitat conservation projects.
For more information on the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s role in the implementation of the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative, please visit http://www.fws.gov/glri/.
The mission of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is working with others to conserve, protect and enhance fish, wildlife, plants and their habitats for the continuing 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 lands and natural resources, dedicated professionals and commitment to public service. For more information on our work and the people who make it happen, visit www.fws.gov.
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