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January 2012

Conservation Connection January 2012

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In this issue:

  • New wildlife commissioner
  • Hope for a Wild Future
  • Illegal ATVs
  • Wildlife connectivity


Jay Kehne and his daughter, Jordan.

Jay Kehne with his daughter Jordan.
Photo: Rita Kehne










Conservation Northwest's Jay Kehne Appointed to Wildlife Commission

Jay Kehne, a long-time resident of Omak who works part time for Conservation Northwest, has been appointed by Governor Chris Gregoire to Washington's Fish & Wildlife Commission. His appointment triggered some disturbing vitriol in Okanogan County, a reaction which the Wenatchee World denounced as "A new blacklist." His appointment also inspired hope and acclaim.

"The job of a wildlife commissioner is to look at the best science possible and make a good decision for wildlife," says Kehne. "Politics and one's place of employment should not be involved. Everybody works for somebody." Thanks to his deep knowledge as a hunter and scientist as well as his respectful relationship with a broad range of citizens, Washington State can only expect to benefit by Kehne's new position for wildlife.






Conservation Northwest staff at our 2012 annual retreat: Can't wait to see you at our May auction!

Conservation Northwest staff at our 2012 annual retreat. Hoping to see you at our May auction!
Photo: Jeff Debonis





Hope for a Wild Future on May 9th

2012 marks our 9th annual Hope for a Wild Future auction. We hope you will join us and auctioneer David Silverman for a fantastic evening mingling with friends, enjoying local organic cuisine, bidding on unique adventures, and ensuring a healthy wild future. Please mark your calendar for Wednesday, May 9, 5:30 - 9:30 pm, at Herban Feast's Sodo Park.

Want to help our auction succeed? There are many ways to get involved! Packages: Does your business offer unique gear, adventures, edibles, or services? Please let us know. Sponsors: Gain great exposure for your company with a cash donation. Volunteers: Have fun and meet new friends as you help make this evening a success. Friends: Become a table captain and invite your friends to learn more about our work keeping the Northwest wild.

To register today, call Julia at 800.878.9950 x 10. Online registration begins Feb 3.






 

 

Volunteers working to close illegal roads in the Colville National Forest.

Volunteers working to close illegal roads in the Colville National Forest.
Photo: Derrick Knowles

 


Appealing to Reason on Illegal ATV Use

Conservation Northwest, Kettle Range Conservation Group, and The Lands Council have appealed the Forest Service's decision to open 170 miles of road to ATV riders in the south end of the Colville National Forest near Chewelah. With illegal blazing of off-road trails already rampant in the area, the South End Project is an open invitation to some users to create their own destructive trails.

The South End Project raises concerns for wildlife and for equestrians and other recreationists. How will the agency control illegal trespass and damage to backcountry areas adjacent to the newly opened routes? They already have a poor record stopping illegal off-road use and restoring damage in the area. The Colville National Forest needs to address this issue and more – and in the meanwhile put this project on ice.



 

 

Roads cutting across habitat make it hard for badgers and other arid lands' wildlife to do well.

Exploring ways to connect Washington for badgers and other wildlife.
Photo: © Paul Bannick

 

 

 

 


When a Road Runs Through It

Conservation Northwest helps connect wild areas for wildlife and reduce the harm caused by roads to wildlife. This month we twice gained ground for wildlife connectivity in Washington.

Governor Chris Gregoire released her "Connecting Washington Plan" for transportation in the state. The plan accelerates wildlife crossing structures for the I-90 wildlife corridor and steers clear of a destructive Cross-Base Highway threatening rare oak-woodland prairie in Pierce County.

The Bureau of Land Management announced it will use connectivity science to inform land management on the nearly half a million acres of arid lands in Washington. The scientific tools they will use are maps and models they helped generate as part of the Washington Wildlife Habitat Connectivity Working Group, which includes Conservation Northwest. BLM's new focus on connectivity benefits wildlife from mule deer to sage grouse, and badgers to jackrabbits.




 

 

 

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