New England Cottontail | Credit: FWS
  • Partners for New Hampshire’s Fish and Wildlife

    Partners for New Hampshire’s Fish and Wildlife is a partnership between Eversource and the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) dedicated to restoring and sustaining healthy forests and rivers in New Hampshire.

    Eversource, through its subsidiary Northern Pass Transmission LLC, has committed $3 million between 2015 and 2016 to the partnership. NFWF has committed an additional $1.5 million over that period of time. These funds may be further leveraged by other public and private sources that are anticipated to flow to the program.

    The partnership invests in on-the-ground restoration projects and applied science in order to:

    • Strengthen the health of forest systems by improving the management of public and private forestlands and by creating a mosaic of mixed age forests.
    • Promote working forests that are integral to local economies and ecosystems.
    • Improve the quality of cold-water river and stream systems through targeted riparian and stream restoration.
    • Reduce barriers to fish passage and increase access of fish to high-quality, cold-water habitat.
    • Enhance biodiversity of forest and river systems and increase populations of species such as New England cottontail, American woodcock, Bicknell’s Thrush and Eastern brook trout.
    • Create and sustain vital habitat for diverse native freshwater fish and bird populations in New Hampshire.

    Through Partners for New Hampshire’s Fish and Wildlife, NFWF and Eversource work with a variety of stakeholders—private landowners, government agencies, academic institutions and conservation groups—to cultivate science-based conservation strategies, and cost-effective on-the-ground projects.

    Competitive grants are reviewed by a committee of government and academic experts, and funding decisions are based on the ability of the applicant to implement strategies that achieve the program priorities and result in measurable conservation outcomes.

    To date, seventeen grants have been awarded that will restore early successional habitat, modify and replace barriers to fish movement, restore riparian and instream habitat, and engage hundreds of volunteers in forest habitat restoration and stream connectivity projects in New Hampshire. These projects are expected to:

    • Open 240 miles of streams for Eastern Brook Trout through barrier modification or replacement,
    • Improve 1,601 acres of young forest habitat for New England Cottontail and American Woodcock, and
    • Rrecruit at least 661 volunteers to engage in on-the-ground conservation.

    The grants total over $1,618,000 including $1,200,000 from Eversource and over $1,418,000 in NFWF federal funds. The grantees are providing an additional $2,062,000 in matching contributions, for a total conservation impact of almost $4.7 million.



    Connecticut River Watershed Council- Getting Conservation on the Ground - Outreach and Assistance For Limited Resource Landowners in the Connecticut River Watershed (Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Vermont) $64,540
    Provide project design, technical assistance, and financial assistance to at least six private landowners with working lands in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Vermont who are unable to meet cost share requirements for improving riparian and in-stream habitats on their land. Project will target priority Eastern Brook Trout Joint Venture watersheds within the Connecticut River watershed, especially those watersheds with high potential for sediment and nutrient loading reductions, by implementing habitat best management practices to restore twelve miles of riparian and in-stream habitat, which also will benefit Long Island Sound priorities and the goals of the Long Island Sound Regional Conservation Partnership Plan.

    Merrimack River Watershed Council - Expanding Riparian Forest Buffers to Improve Water Quality Using a Precision Stormwater Approach (Massachusetts, New Hampshire) $103,971
    Restore riparian forest buffers in four targeted New Hampshire and Massachusetts sub-watersheds of the Merrimack River, selected by metrics based on impervious surface area, nutrient pollution level, and brook trout habitat, to improve water quality and habitat for Eastern Brook Trout and other aquatic species. Project will provide training and technical assistance to landowners and municipalities in Hillsborough, Merrimack, and Rockingham counties in New Hampshire and Essex county in Massachusetts, resulting in the planting of 2,400 mixed native seedlings on fourteen demonstration sites by sixteen trained volunteers.

    University of New Hampshire - The Stewardship Network: New England - Mobilizing Volunteers for Forest and Riparian Habitat Restoration in New Hampshire (New Hampshire) $100,000
    Increase the capacity of local conservation organizations, public agencies, and local communities to work with volunteers on conservation of New Hampshire’s lands and waters. Project will provide technical assistance and training in volunteer management on at least 15 habitat restoration projects and three citizen science projects in three focus areas, including habitat restoration for forest and riparian species in greatest need of conservation according to New Hampshires’s State Wildlife Action Plan, innovative approaches for invasive plant removal to restore healthy forests and riparian areas, and citizen science programs focused on wildlife and water quality.

    Vermont Center for Ecostudies - Mapping Abundance and Estimating Population Size of Bicknell's Thrush (Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont) $78,588
    Produce two spatially explicit estimates of abundance and population size of Bicknell's Thrush and other montane forest birds in Maine, New Hampshire, and Vermont to predict how abundance, population size, and distribution may change in response to forest succession and disturbance events. Project will fill critical information gaps identified by the US Fish and Wildlife Service and the International Bicknell's Thrush Conservation Group, and the results will help identify priority habitat areas for future conservation by recruiting 100 volunteers and monitoring 650 stream and forest sites.


 Application Information

  • (Updated: 3/14/2017)


 Program Information

  • (Updated: 10/3/2017)

  • (Updated: 10/3/2017)

  • (Updated: 10/3/2017)

  • (Updated: 10/3/2017)


 Staff Representatives