Maine Audubon is excited to offer you an opportunity for funding through a grant from the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation to help pay for the cost of wildlife stewardship or forest management plans that will benefit a wide range of fish and wildlife species in the Central Maine – Lower Kennebec River Watershed.
The FFMB approach helps landowners manage for high quality, mature forest habitat that benefits forest birds and many other species of forest wildlife. This project links FFMB to aquatic systems, with the goal of also improving habitat and stream connectivity for brook trout, Atlantic salmon, and other native aquatic species.
Why Central Maine?
This area — also technically identified as the Lower Kennebec Watershed — was identified by our funders, the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, as a priority watershed for forest and river conservation projects. Seventy-three percent of the project area is made up of undeveloped blocks of upland forested habitat that are more than 250 acres, and 64 percent is in blocks of at least 1,000 acres. The area includes portions of Critical Habitat for Atlantic Salmon, extensive high value Brook Trout and diadromous fish habitat, and several Important Bird Areas and Beginning with Habitat Focus Areas of Ecological Significance.
Participating landowners who agree to have the following elements addressed in their management plans will be provided funding on a first come, first served basis:
- A variety of forest habitats, including different native tree and shrub species, ages and sizes
- Habitat for older-forest bird species and species that require large patches of continuous forest
- High-value habitats such as wetlands, vernal pools, old growth or late successional stands, and deer wintering areas, if they are present on the property
- Rare, threatened and endangered plant and animal species if they are present on the property
- Habitat for other species of conservation concern, such as Maine Audubon’s 20 “Priority Forest Birds”
- Areas adjacent to streams, ponds, lakes, and wetlands
- Maintenance or restoration of pathways for fish and other aquatic creatures where roads or trails cross streams
- Important wildlife trees – such as dead standing trees, trees with nesting cavities, and nut-producing trees – as well as rotting logs that help support habitat diversity on the forest floor
Is your land in the Lower Kennebec River Watershed?
Take a look at the map and see if your town is included in the project area. If you have questions about whether or not your land qualifies, contact Hannah Young at email@example.com.
How does the program work?
Step 1: If you own 10+ acres in the Lower Kennebec River Watershed and are interested in wildlife-friendly forest management, contact Maine Audubon to learn how to access funds to prepare a wildlife-friendly plan or improve habitat on your woodland. Email Hannah at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (207)781-2330 x 219.
Step 2: Maine Audubon will connect you with a Maine Forest Service District Forester, who will walk your land with you to discuss options for wildlife-friendly management, incorporating recommendations from our Forestry for Maine Birds and Stream Smart programs.
Step 3A: If you already have a forest management plan, you can talk with Maine Audubon about updating your plan to include more wildlife-friendly forest practices.
Step 3B: If you do not already have a forest management plan, Maine Audubon can help you find a wildlife biologist or private consulting forester to help you write a Plan.
Step 4: Once you commit to creating a Plan that includes provisions to enhance habitat for species and habitats of conservation concern, Maine Audubon can provide funds directly to you to help defray the cost of preparing the plan.
You can find more details on how the program works here.
If you already have a wildlife-friendly management plan and you’re ready to take action now there are funds available to implement qualified wildlife-friendly management plans too. Do you have a specific project in mind and you’re ready to put that plan into practice? Contact Maine Audubon to discuss your proposed plan and possible payment to help defray the costs of certain habitat enhancement activities.
Visits from Woodland Professionals
Unsure of where to start? Contact Maine Audubon today and we can help set up a free visit from a woodland professional who can visit you on your property and make recommendations for next steps to get you on your way to fish and wildlife-friendly forest management. If you live in the watershed area, contact Hannah Young at 207.781.2330 x219 or email@example.com to be connected with a woodland professional in your area.