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The UPRC&D Council Has A New AmeriCorps Member: Dan Watt
 Dan Watt demonstrating Sea Lamprey biology to students at a YMCA camp in Ocqueoc, MI

As a Huron Pines AmeriCorps member Dan will be serving at the UPRC&D Council as the Invasive Plant Specialist.† Dan holds a bachelorís degree in Natural Resource Management from Grand Valley State University and has previously worked at the Santa Ana National Wildlife Refuge in Texas as a plant ecology intern, and as a member of the Huron Pines Restoration Field Crew in Gaylord, MI.† Throughout his service term at the UPRC&D Council, Danís main focus will be on garlic mustard and non-native Phragmites mapping and management.† He will continue garlic mustard management efforts started under the RRIP-IT-UP project (details on the RRIP-IT-UP tab in the left column) by educating students, recruiting volunteers to help manage infestations, developing outreach materials, and attending events to promote awareness of garlic mustard issues.† Since this is the second and final year of funding for our U.P. wide Phragmites project, Dan will continue efforts to survey and map phragmites infestations and visit with landowners to provide them with invasive plant technical assistance.† Also, as a certified pesticide applicator, Dan will help the local conservation districts to treat outlying infestations. ††††

Another important part of Danís service will be working wih all five Cooperative Weed Management Areas (CWMAs) developing outreach materials to increase exposure of a new group called the Upper Peninsula Invasives Council (UPIC).† We hope the formation of this group will facilitate communication between the five CWMAs to more efficiently manage invasive species.† Dan has already implemented a bimonthly electronic newsletter called The UPIC eNews which highlights projects, invasive species news, stories from the field, or anything of interest to the 5 CWMAs.† Dan will also serve on the conference planning committee for the 5th annual Northern Great Lakes Invasive Species Conference, which will be held in the fall of 2014.

UP RC&D Council is the Recipient of a $1 Million Dollar NAWCA Grant

The Upper Peninsula Resource Conservation and Development Council (UPRCD), working in cooperation with Ducks Unlimited (DU) and several other partners, was recently awarded a $1 million North American Wetlands Conservation Act (NAWCA) grant to protect, restore and enhance habitat in the Upper Peninsula for waterfowl and other wildlife that depend on wetlands. The grant will also fund work related to specific management limitations at two of the most productive and intensively managed wetland complexes in Michiganís Upper Peninsula. Other partners in the grant proposal include Keweenaw Bay Indian Community, Michigan Department of Natural Resources, Michigan Nature Association, Upper Peninsula Land Conservancy, Raber Area Sportsmenís Club, Sault Area Sportsmenís Club, Straits Area Sportsmenís Club, The Nature Conservancy, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service and private landowners.Collectively, partners have pledged more than $2.1 million dollars in matching funds in pursuit of this grant.

This is a complex project that has a large number of partners engaged and itís rewarding to see all of the pieces fitting into place and leading to a significant impact on our natural lands. The coastal wetland project will protect 2,272 acres and enhance 1,455 acres, including 2,143 acres of wetlands. The project will also secure approximately 13 miles of riparian waterways and protect an additional 8 miles of migration and breeding habitats along beaches, lakeshores, islands and Great Lakes shorelines, including habitat for the piping plover, a federally listed endangered species.

The UP RC&D Council is very excited to play a key role in helping to bring these federal grant dollars to the UP. Project highlights include providing funds to The Nature Conservancy to purchase and permanently protect a two acre tract of Lake Superior shoreline in Grand Marais that is critical habitat for the piping plover. Funds will also be used to secure a conservation easement on a 640 acre parcel in the upper reaches of the Peshekee River which includes 6,000 feet of river frontage. More than half the grant funds will be used to help the Michigan DNR and Ducks Unlimited work together to improve water level management at the Mususcong State Wildlife Management Area in Chippewa County, and the Sturgeon River Sloughs State Wildlife Area in Houghton County, enhancing over 1,400 acres of habitat for migrating waterfowl, outdoor recreationists and hunters.

UP RC&D Council Receives $458,160 Great Lakes Restoration Initiative Grant

The Upper Peninsula Resource Conservation and Development Council has been awarded another grant to fight invasive species in the UP of Michigan. The Council will receive $458,160 from the National Fish and Wildlife Foundationís Sustain Our Great Lakes Program for our project entitled ď Invasive Phragmites Control in Michiganís Upper PeninsulaĒ. Utilizing grant funds, the UP RC&D Council will work with partners to restore or enhance 400 acres of coastal shoreline and wetlands in the UP during 2013 and 2014 by controlling invasive phragmites (Phragmites australis). These restoration activities will help to minimize a serious threat to native coastal wetlands and improve habitat for vulnerable species. We will seek to establish long-term control by reducing known populations and coordinating efforts across jurisdictions and land ownerships to maximize benefits and efficiency. Throughout the project we will take advantage of the Early Detection Rapid Response (EDRR) network of partners by training them to identify 20 additional high-threat species that have the potential to occur in the UP Great Lakes coastal zone. We will also collaborate with the project leaders from the other large-scale phragmites control projects in the upper Great Lakes to exchange ideas and develop cooperative strategies for long-term control in the region. Training partners to detect, monitor and treat invasive phragmites will increase local capacity to assume responsibility for control efforts after this project is completed.

More information about this project and how you can report locations of invasive phragmites in the UP can be found on Phragmites Project page. The UP Phragmites Project Landowner Permission Form can be found on the Project page. When you get to that page scroll down to the "Documents Section" and select the permission form document to view and print.


This page last updated on 12/15/2014.
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