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A Truly Extraordinary Effort of the AMJV Partnership

Attendees of a National Hunting and Fishing Day event in West Virginia enjoy bird and tree identification games at the Cerulean Warbler Appalachian Forestland Enhancement Project booth; Kyle Aldinger.

By Todd Fearer (AMJV), Amanda Duran (AMJV/American Bird Conservancy), Kyle Aldinger (AMJV/National Wild Turkey Federation), and Kylie Schmidt (AMJV/Green Forests Work)

2016 was the first full year of implementing the AMJV’s Cerulean Warbler Appalachian Forestland Enhancement Project. This 5-year project, funded through the NRCS Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP), dedicates $8 million of federal funds to address the conservation needs of the Cerulean Warbler on private lands in a coordinated fashion across the core of their range. Over twenty AMJV partners are assisting with this project, contributing an additional $8 million in direct, in-kind, and logistical support,…
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Forest Management in Appalachians Benefits Migratory Birds

Golden-winged Warbler; Natural Resources Conservation Service.

By Natural Resources Conservation Service

In 2016, the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) released a report detailing how wildlife can benefit through the application of sustainable forestry practices. The report, titled Sustainably Managing Forests Creates Golden-Winged Warbler Breeding Habitat, highlights proven conservation strategies for the bird based on sound forestry management.

The report cites research in which scientists monitored golden-winged warbler response to targeted habitat management. They found that managed forestlands can provide enough habitat to support three pairs of golden- winged warblers per 50 acres. In addition, these lands provide habitat for more…
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Land Trust Initiative Aims to Protect Birds on Private Lands

The home page for the new Land Trust Bird Conservation Initiative; Cornell Lab of Ornithology.

By Cornell Lab of Ornithology

A new partnership between Cornell Lab of Ornithology and the Land Trust Alliance seeks to help protect birds on private lands. The goal of the new Land Trust Bird Conservation Initiative and associated website (birdtrust.org) is to improve conservation for declining species by pairing the bird conservation community with land trusts, which protect more than 24 million acres of private land nationwide.

A recent survey conducted by the Cornell Lab found that birds and bird habitat are a priority for two-thirds of land trusts. Many land trusts are already…
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Energy Working Group Makes Strides Promoting Bird Conservation/Energy Issue

By Matthew Cimitile, AMJV, and Laura Kearns, Ohio Department of Natural Resources

The AMJV and partners are working to assess energy-related risks and determine the potential impact of land-use changes on bird populations from expanded and new energy extraction. Energy extraction in the Appalachians is a fact, and the AMJV Energy Working Group was established to be proactive in working with energy industry to minimize the impacts to birds and the landscape.

This year the Working Group began to develop an effective, all stakeholder value-added approach and engagement strategy to work with industry. Key…
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Ecosystem Benefits and Risks Research Aides Appalachian Resource Management

Mapped products derived from the Ecosystem Benefits and Risks research, focused on water (left) and landscape values/sense of place (right); Appalachian LCC/U.S. Forest Service.

By Matthew Cimitile, Appalachian LCC

The Appalachian Landscape Conservation Cooperative (LCC) and the U.S. Forest Service released products from the first phase of an ongoing study assessing benefits of and risks to the region's "ecosystem services" -- natural assets valued by people such as clean drinking water, outdoor recreation, forest products, and biological conservation. A wealth of regional data, maps, and other knowledge on ecosystem services and risks to their sustainability are now available on the “Ecosystem Benefits and Risks” website within the Appalachian LCC Web Portal. The first phase of the research provides a synthesis of…
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Collaborative Shrike Banding Project Continues in Virginia, West Virginia

Shrike banding; Rich Bailey.

By Sergio Harding, Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, and Rich Bailey, West Virginia Division of Natural Resources

In 2016 the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries continued leading a Loggerhead Shrike (LOSH) trapping and banding project in western Virginia in collaboration with the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources (WVDNR). The work is implemented as part of a broader multi-state endeavor through the LOSH Working Group and this year banding activities included the training of state agency personnel from Kentucky and North Carolina for the expansion of the project to their states.

Twenty-one…
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North America United by its Birds to Secure Vital Habitats

By North American Bird Conservation Initiative

The North American Bird Conservation Initiative (NABCI) published The State of North America’s Birds 2016, the first comprehensive report assessing the conservation status of all bird species that occur in Canada, the continental United States, and Mexico. This report shows that more than one third of all North American bird species need urgent conservation action and calls for a renewed, continent-wide commitment to saving our shared birds and their habitats.

Despite the many challenges faced by North American birds, this report also shows that conservation works. Waterfowl and other…
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Partners in Flight 2016 Landbird Conservation Plan Released

By Partners in Flight

A new analysis of the population status and trends of all landbirds in the continental U.S. and Canada documents widespread declines among 450 bird species—a troubling indicator of the health of these species and their ecosystems. Nearly 20% of U.S. and Canadian landbird species are on a path towards endangerment and extinction in the absence of conservation action, according to the Partners in Flight (PIF) 2016 Landbird Conservation Plan Revision. Fortunately, regional partnerships like Migratory Bird Joint Ventures can help implement cooperative strategies found within the Landbird Conservation Plan Revision to restore habitats…
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Creating Young Forest, Working with Utilities on Managed Lands in NJ

Habitat management at Sparta Mountain Wildlife Management Area; Sharon Petzinger.

By Sharon Petzinger, New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife

The New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife, in collaboration with New Jersey Audubon, created a draft revision to an existing forest stewardship plan that will create patches of young forest habitat within a forested matrix to provide essential habitat for golden- winged warbler and other species without the detrimental edge effects, invasive plants, and consistent maintenance that occur on high-tension powerline rights-of-way. The 10-year plan is developed for the Sparta Mountain Wildlife Management Area in New Jersey. It is still in draft form but is nearing…
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Young Forest Initiative on State Wildlife Management Areas

Seed tree cut in Southwestern New York; New York State Department of Environmental Conservation.

By Sandy Van Vranken, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation

The NYSDEC (DEC) launched a Young Forest Initiative (YFI) in 2015. Goals of the YFI include establishing a minimum of 10 percent of the total forested acreage as young forests on select Wildlife Management Areas (WMAs) over the next 10 years and managing for young forest in perpetuity.
This Initiative was the catalyst for starting in-depth planning process for wildlife habitat management projects. Habitat management plans (HMPs) are being developed for all WMAs and other DEC properties, including select Multiple Use and Unique Areas. These…
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