GREAT LAKES:   THE SAUDI ARABIA OF WATER?

"New freshwater innovation center to expand Great Lakes' research"

 

Mary Livingston Griggs and Mary Griggs Burke Foundation have given a $10 million endowment to Northland College in Ashland. The endowment will allow them to expand the current climate change research and water quality management work in the Chequamegon Bay of Lake Superior.   Additionally, the endowment will add a whole sundry of opportunities including education, ongoing study of water, policy work and communication.   It will also initiate a joint partnership between Northland and the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest, who own the family's property (link here for photos).  


Peter Annin, co-director of the center said,"...water will replace oil as the most important natural resource in the world...people living near the Great Lakes need to increase their water literacy and become thought leaders on the challenges facing fresh water…" 

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            "THE TOXIN THAT KEEPS ON GIVING"                    

"Sick Swan rescue spotlights severity of lead-poisoning problem"

A touching story of a mother Trumpeter Swan saving the life of a lead-poisoned Cygnet on the ice of the St. Croix River. Discusses pushback from hunting organizations, retailers and manufacturers; superiority of copper; cascading effects of lead in wildlife species; impacts on human population and ultimately a call to action.   By not banning the use of lead, our legislators, state and federal agencies are violating their fiduciary responsibilities as trustees of our natural resources.  See "Lead exposure in Wisconsin birds"; WDNR's "Precautions for lead ammunition".  Lastly, take action by contacting your U.S. Senators and Representatives to OPPOSE  Bipartisan Sportsmen's Act of 2015:  prohibits EPA from regulating lead ammunition, opens up increased public lands to hunting, shooting ranges, importation of polar bears and much more.

Link to find your U.S. Senators

Link to find your U.S. Representatives

Link to find you Wisconsin Representatives

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WALKER'S DNR BUDGET JEOPARDIZES CORE OF WISCONSIN'S CONSERVATION HERITAGE FOR YEARS TO COME

Brownstone Falls @ Copper Falls State Park
Brownstone Falls @ Copper Falls State Park

 Walker's proposed

2015-2017 DNR budget

Contact your legislators soon as they plan to move this thru quickly.  Link here for Talking Points for Stewardship Fund.  Send comments to Joint Committee on Finance also.

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"What is the "value" of a rare, endemic or endangered plant?"

Small Yellow Water Crowfoot
Small Yellow Water Crowfoot

WDNR has issued a "Jeopardy Assessment" for eight endangered/threatened plant species in Douglas County.  Enbridge oil will be maintaining their Line 2 along 14 sections of pipeline.  

"The department [WDNR] has determined that the proposed activity is not likely to appreciably reduce the likelihood of the survival or recovery of the species within the state…."


 Public comments will be taken through Monday, March 2, 2015 and should be sent to Rori Paloski .


Link here for "Jeopardy Assessment" which includes species information 

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WELCOME BACK SNOWY OWLS!!!

"Majestic Snowy Owls return to Wisconsin in big numbers"

A fascinating tracking program, Project SNOWstorm, has learned volumes about the Snowy Owl.  Their research shows Snowy Owls are like humans in that some like to travel long distances and others just like to stay around home.  Link here to see where to go for Snowy Owl sightings in Wisconsin.  Link to WDNR News on Snowy Owls in Wisconsin.

Penokee Hills News!!!!


January 26, 2015

"Mining company puts Penokee Hills work on hold"


Mining company sites obstacles that delay/put data collection on hold.

Wisconsin's State Endangered Pine Marten

January 13, 2015

WDNR's Forestry Department intends to log in habitat critical to the Pine Marten.  COMMENTS have now closed.  Link here for complete description of the species and the plan; add'l species information here.  

TALKING POINTS

  • Reintroduction and translocation projects have NOT been successful
  • Fragmentation & isolation are a threat to the Pine Marten
  • Little is known about their "corridor" needs from one habitat to another
  • Forestry department is not required to maintain suitable travel corridors but recommended to minimally "consider" corridors when logging
  • Due to their secrecy, there is a lack of population data;  incidental take data by trappers or effective forest management strategies for this species
  • Logging can occur during breeding period of July & August
  • Only 10% of living wildlife trees will be retained
  • Little is known about their time of dispersal
  • Climate change is noted by state as having a huge impact on Pine Marten's survival

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Celebrate Wisconsin's State Natural Areas

Winter at Gibraltar Rock State Natural Area near Lodi, Wisconsin
Winter at Gibraltar Rock State Natural Area near Lodi, Wisconsin

2014 Annual Report: Conserving Wisconsin's Natural Heritage

Over 50 years of Wisconsin's State Natural Areas Program, the first of its kind in the nation.  This program has 673 Natural Areas in over 373,000 acres of our state including praries, bogs, forests and fens. Besides low-impact recreation these areas are used for research, education and the "preservation of genetic and biological diversity".  Link here to watch a highlight video, subscribe to the DNR Spotlights, order a guide book, maps, volunteer opportunities and much more.  Wisconsin residents can also support our natural resources by purchasing an Endangered Resources license plate.  These funds are NO longer used to compensate hound hunters as they did in the past.  Link here for Endangered Resources license information.  They have both Badger & Wolf license plates!!

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A Story of Survival - The Trumpeter Swan

December 23, 2014

"At 25, 82K is oldest survivor of the Trumpeter Swan program."

Beginning her life in Alaska and persevering, 25 years and many cygnets later 82K is seen in December 2014 in Burnett County, WI.  Link here for DNR info/video. 

Great Lakes Gray Wolves are finally protected!!!

Kirtland's Warbler: Wisconsin's Endangered Songbird

The Kirtland's Warbler nests in young jack pine stands. Until 1995 they had nested only in the northern part of Michigan’s Lower Peninsula. Today, they also nest in the Upper Peninsula, and since 2007, have nested in Wisconsin and Canada.  (See USF&WS' 2014 Kirtland's Warbler Season Report and more USF&WS' WI data here also)

Sandhill Crane Roost Count

November 2014

(link to video)

10,000 cranes counted on the staging area of the Wisconsin River!!!! Link here for Int'l Crane Foundation 

North American Bird Conservation Initiative: State & National reports

One hundred years after the extinction of the Passenger Pigeon, the nation’s top bird scientists from conservation groups and agencies have come together again to publish the fifth State of the Birds report.  Includes a fascinating video, a watch list, common birds in steep declines, archives and more.  

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WISCONSIN'S BELOVED WHITE DEER ARE  PROTECTED - LET US KEEP IT THAT WAY!!!!

Enjoy the Photo Gallery 

"PROTECT THE WHITE DEER"

White and Albino deer are now protected statewide under temporary emergency protection.  Two white does and a white buck have been killed in car accidents most recently.  An 11-year old boy recently killed a  Michigan white deer with a bow.  White Deer or True Albino Deer are not genetically "defective" but simply inherit a rare genetic trait.  White deer are not protected in Michigan nor is there any statewide education advocacy group in place.  Wisconsin's  Protect the White Deer advocacy group is very active and working towards introducing a resolution in the 2015 WCC spring hearings again.  See their website as it's chockful of information and continual media updates.

 

According to State Farm Insurance data, Wisconsin still ranks 7th in the nation for car collisions with deer and this translates to a 1 in 85 chance of colliding with deer.  Urban car crashes are on the rise.  There were also 47,669 projected industry claims.  (See link for data)

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2014 DEER MANAGEMENT IN WISCONSIN

Deer impact on quality of habitat continues to be of great concern.   In some areas of the state it is noted that forest regeneration is not occurring and some habitat may never recover (see Polk County October minutes).  Historically, population continues to be way over goal throughout the state (see p. 7 of the "2013 White-tailed deer report".  Nevertheless, the Wisconsin DNR has embraced new statewide deer management policy.  There is a deer advisory council in every county (CDAC) that will rely on public input at the county level.  Link here for interactive map that will take you to your county.  You can see deer population recommendations; previous meeting minutes and take a survey.    Link here for Wisconsin's  46-page complete "Deer Management Program" in Wisconsin.  This is the most up-to-date version but with the new rule changes a new version will be published soon.  Nevertheless,  it is a good deer primer.

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BIOLOGISTS' LETTERS AND AUDIO

15 October 2014

6 Biologists strongly respond w/ letter to USFWS' Acting Region 3 Director. Link for letters and audio conversation w/ Dr. Adrian Treves.

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FIRST 2014 COUGAR SIGHTINGS WDNR CONFIRMED

October 7, 2014

WDNR has stated, "Cougars are protected wild animals in WI. That means that it is illegal to kill them other than in defense of human life."

See JS article and DNR link  for cougar sightings and other helpful/interesting information.  Mountain Lion Foundation and The Cougar Network are excellent resources also.

 

MASSIVE SEPTIC SPILL - WALKER'S DNR IS SILENT

October 4, 2014

Sturgeon Bay, Door County, Wisconsin
Sturgeon Bay, Door County, Wisconsin

Beautiful Door County near Sturgeon Bay;

640,000 gallons of liquid cow manure spills from septic; "On Monday, Sept. 22, ...DNR decided to remove the berms and let the remaining liquid manure flow down Sugar Creek and into Green Bay."

WDNR can't keep up with frac sand mining compliance evaluations

October 1, 2014

ONLY 20% of frac sand mines have been inspected

2013 Burnett County: 75,648,000 gallons water used (1 site)

2013 Barron County: 84,598,000 gallons water used (1 site)

Click here - interactive map of frac sand mining operations in Wisconsin with details of water use....

VICTORY FOR WOLVES IN WYOMING

September 23, 2014

 "Federal Judge reinstates federal protections statewide"

State management has been halted including unlimited killing of wolves in over 80% of state;

Wyoming must develop science-based wolf management plan

 

WISCONSIN BAT FESTIVAL!!!!!

October 3-5, 2014

Milwaukee, WI

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Schultz Audubon Nature Center

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Urban Ecology Center

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Zoofari Conference Center

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Presented by

Organization for Bat Conservation 

74-MILE GAS LINE THREATENS RARE SPECIES

August 31, 2014

DNR: Pipeline work could kill rare species

Threatened Prairie Leafhopper, Wood Turtle, Frosted Elfin

Endangered Phlox Moth

Project description

Incidental Take DNR page

Public comments closed as of 9/9/2014; Questions -  Rori Paloski, Conservation Biologist, WDNR, PO Box 7921, Madison, WI 53707-7921

 

ILLINOIS GOVERNOR QUINN SIGNS SB 3049!!

August 25, 2014

Wolves, Black Bears and Mountain Lions are now a Protected Species in Illinois!
Wolves, Black Bears and Mountain Lions are now a Protected Species in Illinois!

"SB 3049 amends the Illinois Wildlife Code to add the Gray wolf, American black bear, and Cougar to the list of protected species. These animals are currently very rare or nonexistent in the state. Senate Bill 3049 will help protect immigrants of these species to promote their recovery in Illinois. "(Click on photo for more info)

August 23, 2014

"Nature offers peace for warriors"

Juneau County Star Times

Necedah Nat'l Wildlife Refuge, in the heart of Wisconsin, reaches out to veterans and shows that nature and it's wildlife can heal old wounds.

 

FIVE SCIENTISTS SEND LETTER TO USF&WS

August 25, 2014 - Letter questions Wisconsin population numbers in light of  data submitted by WIDNR, continued  poaching and new threat(s) of training hounds on wolves.  Link here

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JULY 10, 2014

"Appeals court says hunters can train dogs on wolves" 

The 4th District Court of Appeals on Thursday lifts injunction.  Hound hunters can now legally run their unleashed hound dogs on wolves 24 hrs/day & 365 days/year including breeding and pup-rearing season.  (link for more info)

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HUNTING INCREASES ACROSS WISCONSIN

Update:  Season on killing of Mourning Doves (September 1 thru November 29)

In June the Wisconsin NRB approved an extra 20 days of hunting on these lovely birds who mate for life. Currently, Wisconsin kills approx. 100,000 Mourning Doves each year.

Wisconsin NRB & DNR approved hunting/killing Bobcats So. of 64 throughout the entire state.

Update: Season on killing of Blue-Winged Teal (September 1 thru September 7)

Despite objections from the central Wisconsin Waterfowl Hunter & Mead McMillan Duck Hunters, DNR gets go-ahead from Fish & Wildlife and NRB approves season on Blue-winged Teal..."potential for harvesting non-target species is great..."

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Environmental risks looming in Wisconsin (5/29/2014)

Gogebic taconite mining land in Ashland County,WI

DNR identifies potential pollution problems with iron mining; 07/10/2014; Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

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WI's water and land dangerously at risk: Read Earth Island Journal's piece on the Penokee Hills (click on photo)
WI's water and land dangerously at risk: Read Earth Island Journal's piece on the Penokee Hills (click on photo)

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Wisconsin's state agency charged with managing our natural resources  no longer uses science as it's guide.  This agency continues to silence biologists and the voices of their public.  Currently, their wildlife, water and land management policies reflect the interests of hunting and big-business lobbyists.

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2013/2014 in Wisconsin

Forest industry attempts to weaken protections for imperiled bat colonies

Penning of wild animals continues unabated (live captive bait)

18% increase in Black Bear hunting 2014 (BAITING is rampant)

340+ wolves killed-majority by trapping (hound dogs killed 30+)

Hound dogs used on wolves despite WCC vote

Hound depredation payments continue despite allegations of fraud

State Park testimonies against permanent rules are shocking!!!

Bobcat killing quota increases (hounds & trapping)

Woodchuck season attempted despite opposition (still in committee)

Trapping increases w/ demand from China

"Coyote killing contests" continue

CWD continues unabated

Invasive species thrive

DNR betrays public trust over Badger Ammunition facility

MacKenzie Center is "poster child" for conservation vs. hunting in WI

State increases funding for promotion of youth hunting

State targets wildlife rehabilitation centers

State eases fees for dumping of toxic substances in wetlands

Mining and fracking continues

 Increase in "impaired waters" in Wisconsin

Hunting/poaching violations rampant

Potential hunting in city limits

 

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FOR EMAIL ALERTS AS WE MOVE FORWARD TOGETHER TO COALESCE AGAINST THE CURRENT SYSTEM OF NATURAL RESOURCE MANAGEMENT IN OUR STATE, SIGNUP AT OUR SIDEBAR "NEWSLETTER" BOX OR JUST SEND US AN E-MAIL ; FEEL FREE TO WRITE US AT P.O. BOX LISTED ALSO.

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MISSION STATEMENT

Our mission is to raise awareness of Wisconsin’s wildlife, land and water resources by connecting with like-minded people across our state. Wisconsin's natural resources are held in Public Trust for all to enjoy for generations to come. Coexistence with wildlife should be of the highest priority. Exploitation of Wisconsin's wildlife, land and water is not in the best interests of our fragile ecosystems and negates the proud heritage of Wisconsin's natural resources. 

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