The 2015 update of the NH Wildlife Action Plan included an extensive amount of public participation. 166 individuals representing 79 communities participated in public engagement sessions held throughout the state. 1,142 people responded to an online survey to express their concerns and priorities for wildlife in New Hampshire. 123 people provided comments on a draft of the Plan prior to its submission. And what did we hear during this process? YOU want to take action! Public input from interested citizens like you helped craft a Plan that provides more than 100 specific actions that can be taken by communities, conservation groups, landowners, state agencies, natural resources professionals and others to protect and manage wildlife and habitats in New Hampshire. Based on your feedback, we have worked to make the actions you can take much more accessible and easy to find. Below, you'll find some information on new and existing resources focused on how landowners, communities, and conservation groups can take action for wildlife and habitats in New Hampshire. For more actions, visit takingactionforwildlife.org.
Keep a journal of wildlife observations on your land! Let parts of your lawn grow tall! Work with professional foresters and biologists to manage your property! These are just a few of the actions for landowners included in the updated 2015 Wildlife Action Plan. For more ideas of actions you can take for wildlife on your property, check out the new information sheet - 5 Ways Landowners Can Take Action for Wildlife. You'll find five key actions for landowners, as well as many other simple steps and actions that can be taken to improve your property for wildlife - planting pollinator habitat, addressing invasive species, attending workshops or trainings, volunteering for local efforts for wildlife, creating a mangement plan, and much more! Landowners can choose the actions that work for them and their land, and can learn from the experience of others in the Landowners Take Action for Wildlife brochure and on the Stories page at takingactionforwildlife.org. Individuals can also follow UNH Cooperative Extension Forestry & Wildlife Program and NH Fish & Game on Facebook and other social media to stay informed on wildlife and habitats in New Hampshire.
Conduct a Natural Resources Inventory! Get to know the habitats in town! Plan some fun outdoor events around wildlife! Use the Wildlife Action Plan maps for your town! These are just a sampling of the community actions in the updated Wildlife Action Plan. Take a look at the new information sheet - 5 Ways Communities Can Take Action for Wildlife. You will find five key actions for communities together with a longer list of other actions to take – addressing invasive species, prioritizing habitats for protection, collaborating with local schools, and much more! Communities can choose whichever actions best fit their needs and resources and build on actions they have already taken. Get inspired by other communities – see the brochure Communities Take Action for Wildlife and the Stories Page on takingactionforwildlife.org. Take a look at the new 2015 Wildlife Action Plan Species and Habitats lists and learn more about these species and habitats in Appendices A and B of the Wildlife Action Plan.
Prioritize your conservation efforts using the Wildlife Action Plan maps! Manage your land for wildlife! Engage the public on conservation lands with wildlife-themed walks and volunteer workdays! Whether you are a town-based or regional land trust, a multi-town watershed committee, or a state-wide conservation organization, these are just a few of the ways you can use the updated 2015 NH Wildlife Action Plan in your work. The 2015 plan makes it easy to learn about actions you can take to help wildlife in NH. We’ve created resources that outline these actions – take a look at the new information sheet – 5 Ways Land Trusts can Take Action for Wildlife. You will find five key actions for land trusts/conservation organizations together with a longer list of other actions to take – planning recreation around sensitive habitats and wildlife, addressing invasive species, be a model land-owner by practicing best management habitat and demonstrating the work you do for wildlife, teach others and spread the word about the Wildlife Action Plan, and much more! You can also find inspiration from other conservation organizations that have taken action for wildlife on the Stories page of takingactionforwildlife.org.
Interested to find out more about the 2015 Wildlife Action Plan and how it can benefit your land, community, or organization? Attend a Data, Maps, Action! Workshop in a location near you in 2016! Click here to view date and location information, and to register.
By Haley Andreozzi, Amanda Stone, and Emma Tutein, UNH Cooperative Extension
Winter 2016 Taking Action for Wildlife Newsletter