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What do you get when you give 135 high school sophomores an armload of heavy pointed shovels, pick-axes, and hacksaws, and send them off into the woods?

Well, that’s not a joke, so don’t wait for a punchline.

What you get are acres of field and wooded areas made more inviting to bees, monarch butterflies, birds, and even rabbits: all of the flying and crawling critters whose actions help pollinate plant life and perpetuate the natural cycles that keep interdependent plant and animal species healthy. The day-long field event was the culmination of a month-long study at Sanborn Regional High School, working in collaboration with the Kingston conservation commission, on the essential role of biodiversity in ecosystems.

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The Francestown Conservation Plan was based on the Francestown Natural Resources Inventory. The Natural Resources Inventory is incorporated as an Appendix to the Conservation Plan. The maps for each document are housed on the town's website. Click here to view the Francestown Conservation Plan maps and the Francestown NRI Maps.

The Conservation Plan and the Natural Resources Inventory were both created in 2013 as part of a collaborative project between the...

Several groups of people huddled over the Wildlife Action Plan maps, a buzz of animated conversation filling the room. Taking Action for Wildlife had come to Alstead, and more than 30 community members were discussing and identifying important habitat areas in town. This was part of the Monadnock Conservancy’s “Community Conservation Partnership” which successfully engaged more than 12 communities in the region from 2008 – 2014. The Conservancy, a land trust covering 35 towns in Cheshire and Western Hillsborough counties, worked with these communities to develop comprehensive Open Space/Conservation Plans that incorporated Natural Resources Inventory data, including wildlife information. By working with communities over a period of intense engagement (several months to a year), the Conservancy was successful in...

Recognizing the need for a comprehensive summary of the town's natural resources that would assist the New Durham Conservation Commission in public education and outreach and help build support for future conservation initiatives, New Durham undertook and completed their Natural Resources Inventory in 2011. The New Durham NRI includes a comprehensive wildlife section using information from the NH Wildlife Action Plan. View the New Durham NRI and the associated maps on the town's website.

Take a look at the...

The Town of Easton, in northern Grafton County, has a way with coming up with catchy names. Their “Pastry and Preservation” conservation events have drawn local residents to enjoy good food and learn about the town’s natural resources. So no big surprise that they came up with “Got Wildlife?”, a creative activity to engage residents in recording wildlife sightings in town. They hung a map of town right outside the town clerk’s office (with permission, of course!) where there are often residents standing in line. A pen hung from a string, and a notepad and some small round stickers were posted alongside. Residents were encouraged to place a sticker on the map where they had spotted a wildlife species in town, give the sticker a number and then write down what species were seen on the notepad (using the corresponding number). Since then, this has...

In the early hours of a Saturday morning in spring, a group of Fremont citizens armed with binoculars and field guides were alert and quiet, listening intently to the chorus of birds and scribbling on their notepads.  “Hermit thrush.  Scarlet Tanager. Chickadee. Wait! Was that a pileated woodpecker?”. A short distance away another group huddled over a small flower, riffling through a field guide to identify it.  A third group was on the hunt for reptiles, amphibians, mammals and insects. This was the start of Fremont’s “BioBlitz”, a fun and informative half-day event involving three teams of interested residents exploring a town-owned property, recording all the plant and animal species they could identify in the space of a few hours....

Launched in 2003, the Quabbin to Cardigan Partnership (Q2C) is a collaborative, landscape-scale effort to conserve the Monadnock Highlands of north-central Massachusetts and western New Hampshire. Habitat conservation in the Q2C region is a high priority for both the Massachusetts and New Hampshire Wildlife Action Plans (WAPs), and the region’s interconnected forests could also prove an important north-south corridor for wildlife adapting their ranges to a changing climate. Its managed timberlands are an important source of forest products and renewable energy, and are a highly-efficient carbon sink. The Q2C Conservation Plan was published in 2008. Encompassing approximately two million acres,...

The Land Conservation Plan for New Hampshire's Coastal Watersheds, published in 2006, was one of the first studies to draw on information and data from the 2005 NH Wildlife Action Plan. The Coastal Conservation Plan prioritizes coastal watershed areas and offers regional strategies for maintaining diverse wildlife habitat, abundant wetlands, clean water, productive forests, and outstanding recreational opportunities. Four principle resource analyses and maps were developed that captured key natural resource features. The resource maps reflect the best remaining opportunities to...

Developed in 2008, the Bear-Paw Regional Greenways Conservation Plan identifies and describes those areas that include the region’s most important ecological, biological, and water resources. Using the results of a natural resource inventory completed for Bear-Paw in 2003 along with information from the 2005 NH Wildlife Action Plan, Bear-Paw identified where to focus its conservation efforts. With this information Bear-Paw determined that the most effective way to conserve the region’s water, wildlife habitat, forests and farmland is through the protection of its large unfragmented forests, riparian areas, and important agricultural soils and farms since they present the best opportunity to conserve the most important natural areas in the region. These areas provide “...

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