Climate Change
Southeast Region

Addressing Climate Change Together with Broad Partnerships: "Landscape Conservation Cooperatives"


After two years in development, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service finalized its Climate Change Strategy in September 2010. It is a call to action, impossible to ignore:

We must respond to rising global temperatures to continue fulfilling our mission.

The Service cannot face this challenge alone. Neither can a state, a nonprofit organization or a university system. Climate change demands more of us all, working together.

The nationwide network of Landscape Conservation Cooperatives are the centerpiece of our response. These are self-directed partnerships of conservation groups that share an ecosystem. Whether working on behalf of a land trust or a state wildlife agency, for causes from clean and abundant water to better hunting and fishing opportunites, we share common goals. Together we will learn how global warming impacts fish, wildlife and their habitats, and how we can reduce those impacts.

Climate change also exacerbates every other conservation challenge we grapple with, from water scarcity to invasive species. LCCs are harnessing the nation's best tools to address each one, and leading us into a new era for conservation.


LCC Project Snapshot: Enhancing the Utility of International Shorebird Survey Data Management

The Manomet Center for Conservation Sciences has been counting shorebird populations, mostly along the Atlantic Seaboard, since 1974 when it organized the International Shorebird Surveys. The data, which includes 80,000 counts in 1,200 locations, taught us that many shorebird species depend on strategic staging areas when they migrate. One result was the formation of the Western Hemisphere Shorebird Reserve Network, which builds protection for the migration sites.

With $198,000 from the South Atlantic Landscape Conservation Cooperative, Manomet and the Cornell Lab of Ornithology will spend two years clearing up their backlog of data entry, including adding in environmental variables that will make the bird count database far more powerful. It should become an invaluable tool for everyone from the refuge manager making decisions about a freshwater impoundment, to conservation leaders seeking to understand the implications of climate change.

“Once the nuts and bolts of this management system are improved, it’s going to be used by partners throughout the U.S.,” said Project Leader Dr. Brad Andres, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s National Coordinator of the U.S. Shorebird Conservation Plan.


A beautiful view of an island surrounded by water and sky
"Stormy Sunrise." Lake Mattamuskeet National Wildlife Refuge, North Carolina. Photo by Bill Swindaman.

Water rushes down a creek that is green with spring
"Spring in the Smokies." Photo by Bill Swindaman.


Last updated: September 24, 2010