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 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. 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.
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.
Exploring ways to connect Washington for badgers and other wildlife.
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.