Zinke Announces Public-Private Partnership Bringing $2.7 Million to Habitat Conservation of Big Game Migration Corridors and Winter Range (Source: U.S. Department of Interior)
"An effective strategy for conservation of western big game must include identifying and maintaining migration corridors, which is exactly why I am prioritizing research and conservation of these areas," Secretary Zinke said. "Our goal is healthy herds and just as it is for many other conservation objectives, the best way to work toward this goal is a public-private partnership. The work we do today will ensure that our public lands system remains the envy of the world and that wildlife-based recreation continues to be a cornerstone of the American heritage."
"Healthy and protected migration corridors are essential to the future of a wide range of big-game species across the West," said Jeff Trandahl executive director and CEO of NFWF. "By working closely with our partners at the Department of the Interior and with the support of ConocoPhillips, we will expand funding opportunities for conservation projects that will make a real difference for these big-game species."
"ConocoPhillips has a long history of supporting conservation solutions that help provide lasting ecological benefits," said Ryan Lance, chairman and chief executive officer of ConocoPhillips. "Through our SPIRIT of Conservation Program, ConocoPhillips is proud to support Secretarial Priority 3362 and efforts to protect critical corridor habitat essential for the sustainability of migratory animals."
This new NFWF grant program requires that all proposals specifically address how projects will directly address state-identified priorities to conserve or restore habitat and measurably contribute to the sustainability of local and regional big-game populations. Proposals must accomplish program priorities which include:
- Restoring degraded priority winter range stopover areas and migration corridors by activities identified in the state plans such as removing encroaching trees from sagebrush ecosystems, rehabilitating areas damaged by fire or treating exotic/invasive vegetation to improve the quality and value of these areas to big game and other wildlife.
- Working cooperatively with private landowners and State highway departments to achieve permissive fencing measures, including potentially modifying (via smooth wire) removing (if no longer necessary) installing (if serving to direct big game movement out of harm's way) or seasonally adapting (seasonal lay down) fencing, if proven to impede movement of big game through priority migration corridors.
- Implementing measures such as conservation easements and management agreements or other actions to protect bottle necks within corridors and other areas within priority winter range or stopover areas threatened by fragmentation.
- Using other proven actions necessary to improve the habitat quality/or restore priority big-game winter range stopover areas or migration corridors across the West.
Eligible applicants include non-profit 501(c) organizations, U.S. Federal government agencies, state government agencies, local governments, municipal governments and Indian tribes. For more information about how to apply for this grant please visit https://www.nfwf.org/westernmigrations.
About the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation
Chartered by Congress in 1984, the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) protects and restores the nation's fish, wildlife, plants and habitats. Working with federal, corporate and individual partners, NFWF has funded more than 4,500 organizations and committed more than $4.8 billion to conservation projects. Learn more at www.nfwf.org.