Grants: Wildlife Stewardship

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Outdoor Education Partnership Phase II

Jul 2019

Multiple organizations, including the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Ducks Unlimited and Chippewa Nature Center to develop and expand place-based environmental and sustainability education at schools. The project will provide support for the creation of outdoor education areas provided local public and private schools can utilize project areas in their curriculum. Habitat restoration projects will be restored through the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s Partners for Fish and Wildlife Program with financial assistance from Ducks Unlimited and Chippewa Nature Center will lead the curriculum and program development for each site. A similar project was funded by Saginaw Bay WIN in 2004 and 10 schools successfully received habitat work and study materials. This project proposes to add Chippewa Nature Center (CNC) as an expert partner in outdoor education. CNC educates thousands of school children every year and have staff with the necessary expertise to tailor each project to the State of Michigan curriculum and the school’s preferences for subject matter. In addition to curriculum development, CNC will provide a staff facilitated program for up to 8 classrooms at each school to ensure that all educators have the resources they need to educate students and encourage new land stewards for several years to come. We estimate approximately 3,000+ students will be educated in the outdoor classrooms every year.

On-The-Ground Saginaw Bay Watershed Habitat Project _ MUCC

Dec 2014

Established by the Michigan United Conservation Clubs, the new "On The Ground" habitat program seeks to partner with local groups, MUCC members, and others in the effort to improve wildlife habitat across the state. The WIN-funded initiative will support project sin our region, partnering with local land conservation organizations and others to implement projects on conservancy-owned properties, as well as State-owned game areas.

Michigan Waterfowl Legacy Implementation in the Saginaw Bay Region

Nov 2012

This project supports an expanded Saginaw Bay component of the newly created Michigan Waterfowl Legacy program. The MWL is a statewide effort to promote the use of wetlands, primarily by hunters, new hunters, and birders. The objective of the program is to improve waterfowl populations and habitat, increase waterfowl hunting participation, promote the value of waterfowl hunting, and engage citizens to take positive action to conserve the state’s waterfowl and wetland areas. This coalition operates on a small, statewide budget primarily supported by the partners in the coalition. This proposal seeks to fund work specifically in the Saginaw Bay Watershed – work that will primarily include communication and marketing materials and events.

Shiawassee River Vernal Pool Restoration Project

May 2010

This project requested a WIN investment at the Devries Nature Conservancy near Owosso. The funding

supported the re-establishment of a 6 acre “Vernal Pool” complex at the center. Vernal Pools, which are
considered among the most productive wetland types, are typically less than 1 or 2 feet deep, and are
generally supported by spring rains and snow melt. It is estimated that vernal pools makes up less than 5%
of Michigan’s wetland types. In addition to the wetland restoration itself, this vernal pool serves as a focus
of educational activities at Devries..

Shiawassee NWR Wetland Restoration

May 2009

This project requested funding to support the restoration of 220 acres at the Shiawassee National Wildlife

Refuge. The purpose of the project is two-fold: to support the improvement of wildlife habitat and associated
wetland values, and to also develop a unique educational example of wetland restoration. Because this site
will be immediately adjacent to the Refuge’s new auto-tour route, there exists an opportunity to showcase a
wetland restoration example to an estimated 30,000 visitors each year. In fact, this restored wetland will be
among the first parts of the Refuge seen from the tour route.

Thumbs Up! Restoration Project

May 2007

The Saginaw Wetlands Nature Sanctuary is located along Saginaw Bay in Huron County, adjacent to the Wildfowl Bay State Game Area. This site represents perhaps the best example of remaining lakeplain prairie habitat in the entire Great Lakes region, and has been labeled as such by several organizations including The Nature Conservancy. It is also home to the federally threatened Eastern Prairie Fringed Orchid, three state threatened plants and two species of state concern. Unfortunately, this site continues to deteriorate because of invasive plant species that are pushing out the important native plant species. This grant supported the removal of invasive species as well as research by Michigan Natural Features Inventory that developed a long-term management plan for the site that is transferable to other lakeplain prairie areas in the Great Lakes.

Wigwam Bay State Wildlife Area Coastal Wetland Restoration

Oct 2006

This project, sponsored by Ducks Unlimited, proposed to re-establish a wetland of up to 200 acres at this 3200 acre preserve. Hydrologic restoration of this coastal wetland is a significant conservation achievement that meets habitat conservation objectives of many groups working in the Saginaw Bay Region. Saginaw Bay’s coastal wetlands have been identified as “globally significant” by The Nature Conservancy. This project identified the area to be restored, and completed the restoration along with a variety of partners.

Breeding Birds of the Saginaw Bay Watershed: Abundance, Distribution and Conservation

May 2006

The Michigan Breeding Bird Atlas II is a statewide project to document and survey the state’s breeding birds. The atlas documents nesting distribution, abundance and habitat use of endangered species. The project identified at the section level, the unique habitats or assemblages of bird species for use in conservation and management decisions. This project supported the work to document birds in the Saginaw Bay Watershed. In addition to assisting in the funding of the final state wide report this WINinvestment also allowed the Kalamazoo Nature Center to publish and distribute an appendix report that focused specifically on the Saginaw Bay region. A local planning team will guide that part of the effort to ensure that the best available data is produced so that local management decisions can be made by agency and nonprofit resource management group.

Preserve Restoration and Demonstration

Apr 2006

This project propses to use WIN funding to eliminate the non-native Phragmites vegetation from the Pinconning Nature Preserve, which is owned by the Saginaw Basin Land Conservancy. This project involved both a controlled burn on t he property, as well as the applicatin of a chemical herbicide. The project sponsors believed that by eliminating the phragmities that has taken hold in the preserve, it will allow them to more effectively maintain control of this undesirable species in the future. The site is a high quality coastal site along the Saginaw Bay.

Native Plant Seed Source Development at Saginaw Correctional Facility

Nov 2005

In partnership with the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation and the Saginaw Correctional Facility in Freeland, the Shiawassee National Refuge proposed to develop a perpetual seed source for native plants that can be used in restoration projects at the Refuge. In addition, the project incoporated an interpretive kiosk that describes the importance of native plants as part of the ecosystem, as well as describe the fundamental construction and remediation of wetland areas. As part of this project, inmates at the Saginaw County Correction Facility continue the project as part of their current gardening program.

Understanding Habitat and Nutrient Requirements of Spring Staging Waterfowl and Shorebirds.

Oct 2005

The purpose of this project was to determine the amount and types of wetland habitat that are required to support the nutritional needs of spring migrant birds. The project produced a planning tool/methodology that assists biologists in conducting a more accurate and cost effective determination of habitat priorities in the Great Lakes region generally, and in the Saginaw Bay Region specifically.

A Planning Tool for Sustaining and Improving the Health of Saginaw Bay’s Coastal Habitat

May 2005

This project, sponsored by Ducks Unlimited, developed a planning methodology for enhancing and conserving the ecological health of coastal habitat areas along wetland types as well as increase community awareness of the importance of sustaining the ecological health of coastal habitats to human and wildlife populations.