This project enhanced the conservation status and increased awareness of shrubland habitat-dependent Species of Greatest Conservation Need (SGCN) in Northeast Region, with a focus on the Appalachian Mountains. State Wildlife Action Plans in VA, MD, WV, PA and NY collectively identify 87 Species of Greatest Conservation Need (SGCN) that are dependent upon shrubland habitats in Bird Conservation Region 28 – Appalachian Mountains. Within the 87 shrubland dependent SGCN, there are 40 birds, 16 mammals, 16 amphibians/reptiles and 15 invertebrates identified. Shrubland habitats in BCR 28 have declined due to loss of land to development, maturation of successional habitats, suppression of natural disturbance, and lack of active management. To address the decline in shrubland habitat-dependent SGCN, this project was designed to increase the conservation status of shrubland habitats on public and private lands through the development of Best Management Practices (BMPs), establishment of BMP demonstration areas, monitoring of the response of selected shrubland species to habitat management, and outreach to public land managers and private landowners. Restoration of shrubland habitats depends on private landowner awareness of, knowledge of and interest in providing conservation benefits to the suite of species. Short-term conservation benefits to shrubland SGCN from this initiative arose from an increase in shrubland habitats. Long-term benefits will continue from successfully increasing the awareness of private landowners that the current and future actions they take on their land will determine if this suite of species remains imperiled.
Final products include the final report Implementing Bird Action Plans for Shrubland Dependents in the Northeast as well as the following publications, provided below: Implementing the American Woodcock Conservation Plan, American Woodcock Habitat: Best Management Practices for the Central Appalachian Mountains Region and Under Cover: Wildlife of Shrublands and Young Forest. A web site www.timberdoodle.org was developed and populated with documentation of BMPs, demonstration areas and opportunities for technical assistance.