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September 2009

Conservation Connection September 2009

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In this issue:

  • Wildlife connections
  • Getting to know you - wolves
  • Support for community forests
  • No on I-1033!

Participants at Wildlinks 2009

Participants share a smile and solutions for wildlife at our annual Wild Links conference in Osoyoos, BC.
Photo: Erin Moore



Building Wildlinks for Wildlife


Wild Links is our annual wildlife conference that joins people for wildlife in our region: scientists, policy makers, managers, citizens, funders, and conservation nonprofit organizations. Together we explore how best to protect and connect wildlife and habitat into the coming century. This year's Wild Links was held in the Okanagan Valley of British Columbia, a landscape that connects the Coast Range and BC Rockies. Seventy people met at the Osoyoos Indian Band's Nk'Mip Resort to focus on climate change, the cultural and scientific importance of the area, and connectivity over the Canadian-US border.

"We're in crunch time now for wildlife and habitat. This is the start of something big!" Joe Scott, international conservation director, Conservation NW




Wild Links

On a recent tour organized by Conservation NW, we brought together folks from across the fence to talk about wolf management.
Photo: Jasmine Minbashian


Washington's Wolves Get Heard


After two years of extensive scientific peer review and hard work by members of the Washington State Wolf Working Group, including Conservation Northwest, a draft wolf conservation and management plan is finally available. Over the next two months, people will have a chance to speak up for wolves at public hearings around the state.

This month, Conservation Northwest's Jay Kehne brought seven Methow Valley ranchers together with Defenders of Wildlife and agency wildlife officers and biologists to discuss the implications of wolf recovery for livestock growers. Rancher Craig Boesel hosted the get-together at his ranch. It was a good start for opening dialogue and educating ourselves about what it means to live and ranch in wolf country. "Our whole livelihood depends on animals, one way or another," said one participant. Read whole blog entry on Scat!




Townsends warbler

Townsends warbler is a songbird that prefers the type of mixed conifer forests that are often a victim of suburban sprawl.
Photo: © Paul Bannick





Conserving Community Forests


Conservation Northwest is supporting a broad coalition advancing new legislation for private forests threatened by rapid and massive loss of forested lands to development. The Community Forestry Conservation Act protects drinking water, wildlife habitat, rural jobs, and recreation opportunities, all while respecting landowners' rights. The bill makes it easier for land trusts and other public interest groups to buy forestlands, by exempting from taxes the bonds that a nonprofit would sell to raise funds for the purchase. The bonds are then paid off with revenue from environmentally-sensitive logging. The nonprofit signs an easement agreeing to keep the land as a working, community forest.

"We need to hug loggers the way we do farmers. Given the choice between a logger and a developer, I'm going to take the logger, even if that challenges some of the notions of my old friends." Mitch Friedman, executive director, Conservation NW




Farmland at risk

Not another harmful initiative! Stop I-1033 to ensure healthy parks, farms, and ecosystems, some of the very things that make America strong and beautiful.
Photo: © Paul Anderson




I-1033: Bad Idea for People and Wildlife


We are urging our members to oppose I-1033, Tim Eyman's latest initiative. It uses the same rigid and arbitrary formula as the "TABOR" law passed in Colorado, which led to deep cuts for public schools, basic services, children's health care, and state parks. In last year's Washington State budget, the recession led to natural resource agency funding being slashed by about 25%; it was the largest reduction taken by any area of government.

Initiative 1033 would lock in place drastically low levels of funding and greatly hamper the legislature's ability to fund state programs critical for conservation: protection of wildlife habitat, preservation of working farms, and creation of new local and state parks. No on 1033!






Conservation Northwest is now in the top ten for all nonprofits at King 5's Best of Western Washington, garnering 4% of the total vote! Your vote today will put us over the top and spread the word for wildlife far and wide.

Vote for us by Oct 11.




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