Higher Ground: Green Infrastructure for Resilience (multiple states)
Convene six community-based organizations in disaster-prone neighborhoods to engage local partners to train volunteers and teach residents about nature-based practices and install six high visibility projects as a catalyst for broader implementation. Project will reach 600 community members and successes will be shared with peer flood survivors around the country through a network of 48 leaders in 22 states.
Enhancing Hydrology and Restoring Forests in the Lower Mississippi Alluvial Valley (AR, MS)
Restore and enhance bottomland hardwood forests and wetlands on public and private lands within the Delta of Arkansas and Mississippi. Project will restore hydrology, enhance existing forests, and reforest areas to impact a total of 2,590 acres, benefiting migratory waterfowl, Louisiana black bear and other forested wetland-dependent species.
Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University
GIS Capacity and Training to Support Gulf-Wide Ecosystem Conservation and Restoration (AL, FL, LA, MS, TX)
Provide geographic information system (GIS) expertise and training in support of Gulf-wide ecosystem conservation and restoration programs and projects. Project will develop GIS layers and maps where Gulf Coast Ecosystem Restoration Council and Natural Resources Damage Assessment projects have been approved for planning and implementation by the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
Land Trust for the Mississippi Coastal Plain
Educational Outdoor Laboratories and Hydrology Restoration on the Tchoutacabouffa River (MS)
Create a restored green space for scientific and educational activities for the community that will ultimately improve ecological health and water quality. Project will restore the hydrology of a 9-acre pond, plant 75 trees, remove invasive plants on 4 acres, and engage 136 volunteers in restoration projects and 250 students at educational field days.
Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Foundation
Revising the Lower Mississippi Desired Forest Condition for Wildlife Report (multiple states)
Update the Lower Mississippi Valley Joint Venture’s Desired Forest Condition for Wildlife report, which provides technical guidance to land managers on how to manage bottomland hardwood forests for the conservation of wildlife. Project will revise the report to integrate new science on the habitat needs of priority wildlife species, include updates from the Forest Resource Conservation Working Group, and add a section dedicated to the management of restored or young bottomland hardwood stands.
Mississippi Commercial Fisheries United
Developing a Strategic Framework for Permit Banking in the Gulf of Mexico Reef Fish Fishery (MS)
Develop a strategic framework to advance permit and quota banking opportunities for Mississippi fishing communities in the Gulf of Mexico reef fish fishery. Project will develop a tool that could increase the capacity of individual fishermen and fishing businesses while helping to retain access to fisheries.
Mississippi Forestry Foundation
Partnering to Restore and Enhance Longleaf in Mississippi
Establish 325 acres of longleaf pine and enhance an additional 4,000 acres of longleaf habitat with prescribed fire and thinnings in south Mississippi. Project will coordinate restoration and outreach activities across multiple partners, engage private landowners through educational workshops, and provide technical and financial assistance to landowners to plant longleaf pine seedlings, implement prescribed burning, and remove mid-story hardwoods to improve habitat for gopher tortoise.
Mississippi River Trust
Forested Wetland Restoration in the Lower Mississippi River Floodplain (multiple states)
Reforest and protect frequently flooded, marginal cropland on private lands through the adoption of Wetland Reserve Easements in the active floodplain of the Lower Mississippi River. Project will establish 7,500 acres of bottomland hardwood forest to expand and enhance habitat and improve water quality, benefiting the Louisiana black bear, swamp rabbit, forest birds, waterfowl and freshwater fish.
Mississippi State University
Black Bear Monitoring in the Lower Mississippi Alluvial Valley (AR, LA, MS)
Monitor and collect baseline data on black bear movement, gene flow, and genetic isolation among five recovering populations within the Mississippi Alluvial Valley. Project will help assess black bear response to bottomland hardwood restoration efforts and establish a regional black bear monitoring protocol by leveraging monitoring efforts, coordinating standardized protocols for sampling, and collaborating on analyses.
National Audubon Society
2020 Guy Bradley Award - Federal Winner (MS)
Retired Agent in Charge Tom Chisdock from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is the federal level recipient of the 2020 Guy Bradley Award. The Pascagoula River Audubon Center is the beneficiary organization of his $2,500 award.
Reef Fish Conservation and Education Foundation
Engaging the Next Generation of Commercial Fishermen in the Gulf of Mexico (AL, FL, LA, MS, TX)
Develop a workforce training program to recruit and educate young fishermen for the commercial seafood harvesting sector. Project will engage fishery leaders from various fisheries across the Gulf of Mexico in face-to-face meetings to design and plan a fisheries management training program for the Gulf of Mexico and develop a review of similar programs around the United States.
Stephen F. Austin State University
Monitoring Avian Response to Forest Management in the Lower Mississippi Alluvial Valley (AR, LA, MS, TX)
Develop a baseline inventory of bird species in bottomland hardwood restoration sites in the Lower Mississippi Alluvial Valley through the deployment of autonomous sound recorders. Project will compare baseline data to avian community metrics captured in bottomland hardwood forests at different successional stages to identify effective management activities used in forestry wildlife treatments and stages of stand development that need further treatments for maintaining desired forest conditions.
The Nature Conservancy
Restoring Bottomland Hardwood Forests in the Yazoo River Basin (MS)
Restore 1,000 acres of bottomland hardwood forests on marginal agricultural lands in the Yazoo River Basin of the Lower Mississippi Alluvial Valley. Project will restore habitat for Louisiana black bear, swamp rabbits and waterfowl, while improving water quality through sediment and nutrient reduction.
The Nature Conservancy
Restoring Forested Wetlands through a Wetland Reserve Enhancement Partnership (AR, LA, MS)
Restore and protect forested wetlands within high-priority areas in the Mississippi Alluvial Valley (MAV) region of Arkansas, Mississippi, and Louisiana. Project will reforest 2,650 acres of marginal cropland, restore 600 acres of hydrologic wetland function and protect 3,300 acres with conservation easements, benefiting Louisiana black bear, swamp rabbits, waterfowl and neotropical migratory songbirds.
Engaging Landowners in Water Quality and Wildlife Habitat Farm Bill Programs (IA, IL, MN, WI)
Restore cold-water streams and watersheds in the Driftless Area, creating habitat practices for fish, shorebirds, amphibians, reptiles and other aquatic biota. Project will improve management on 525 acres, restore 30 miles of stream, prevent 9,000 tons of sediment and 4 tons of nutrient pollution from entering the system annually.