U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Northeast Region

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At Brave Boat Harbor and Upper Wells, trees had grown too mature to provide habitat for cottontails. Their leafy crowns cut off sunlight, causing ground-covering food plants to die off. Leaving plenty of other middle-aged forest, trees were harvested on less than 5 percent of the forest as part of an effort to manage young forest across 25 acres. The area is now growing into a dense thicket and becoming great habitat for cottontails and other wildlife, such as gray catbird, a type of shrubland bird. Credit: USFWS

Benny Caiola is a real estate developer, but for the next several years, he’s going to be developing some of his land with a different goal in mind — restoration of the New England cottontail rabbit.

Vermont graduate student Christine Peterson collecting vegetation data along a power line right of way. Credit: Dr. Allan Strong

Did you know some birds flock to those shrubby areas maintained around power lines? Vermont graduate student Christine Peterson shares what she’s doing with Audubon and Vermont Electric Company.

New England cottontail. Credit: Peter Paton

Avalonia Land Conservancy returned 22 acres of their property in Connecticut from mature forest to young forest last year, and while they’re still waiting on the rabbits, they’re already seeing a positive response from other critters.