Agencies Look to Young Forest Species to Provide Wildlife Habitat

Sep 10, 2014

A group of natural resource organizations wants to work with landowners to create more habitat for species like the American woodcock and the golden winged warbler.

The American woodcock is one species researchers say benefits from young forest types, along with ruffed grouse and the golden-winged warbler.
Credit http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Woodcock.jpg

The Young Forest Partnership includes the Wisconsin DNR, the American Bird Conservancy and several other groups.

The Partnership wants help landowners with the cost of shearing or harvesting aspen and tag alder, to encourage those short-lived species to regenerate and stay on the landscape.

WXPR’s Natalie Jablonski sat down with Callie Berstch, who works for the American Bird Conservancy as habitat coordinator for Young Forest Partnership, to hear more about the program’s goals. 

  

As Bertsch explains, a variety of species depend on young forest compositions for habitat.

“And that’s why these species are declining, like the golden winged warbler or the woodcock.  We definitely are seeing a decrease in them, and that’s why we want to increase the habitat.” 

Bertsch says game species like ruffed grouse, deer and bear also do well in a young forest environment with lots of new growth and shrubs.

The DNR has been contacting hundreds of landowners in six counties including Oneida, Langlade, and Lincoln, and hopes to connect individuals with funding to offset the cost of the management work.