Habitat Management

Habitat Management Planning Process: The Refuge continues its work developing a new Habitat Management Plan (HMP), which it intends to complete in 2019. An HMP is a dynamic working document developed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and reviewed by the public. It provides refuge managers guidance for the management of refuge habitat, and ensures long-term vision, continuity, and consistency for habitat management on Refuge lands. The last HMP for the Refuge was published in 2004. This new HMP will focus on improving the ecological sustainability of refuge habitats through restoration and improvement projects that will benefit waterfowl, shorebirds, and other priority migratory bird species. The Refuge intends to publish a draft HMP and environmental compliance document for public review in 2019. Once finalized, Refuge staff will begin implementing projects identified in the HMP. Additional information will be posted on this web page and the Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge homepage, including opportunities for public comment and other input.  For more information on HMPs visit:  https://www.fws.gov/policy/620fw1.html  


August 2018:
Water Control Structure – Replacing the southwestern water control structure in Unit 2D. This replacement will allow for more effective water management and improve safety for Refuge staff. Concrete walls have been poured and the structure is awaiting installation of gates, walkways, and handrails. We anticipate construction should be completed within the next few weeks.
Grazing Phragmites – Grazing during the growing season allows cattle to consume the young, green part of this invasive, non-native plant. Grazing stresses the plant, can help reduce seed production, and slows spread of Phragmites. We intend to continue grazing into mid-September.
Prescribed Burning – Since Unit 2D is currently dry, the Refuge intends to conduct a prescribed burn to help manage and control the spread of Phragmites. Burning in conjunction with grazing and herbicide treatments will continue to stress the plant and lead to better control of this invasive plant. The burn is planned for late September or early October, and is contingent upon suitable weather and habitat conditions.
For additional information, please read these frequently asked questions about the Unit 2D habitat management projects.
Improving Hunting and Boating Amenities – Taking advantage of Unit 2D’s current dry status, the Refuge is partnering with Delta Waterfowl to replace two boat ramps. These efforts will improve access for hunters in Unit 2 and 9. Delta Waterfowl volunteers also recently refurbished the Accessible Hunt Blind in Unit 10. We’d like to thank Delta Waterfowl for their support.

Flickr Photo Ablum: https://flic.kr/s/aHsme8GQR3