Ryan Crehan is a wildlife restoration biologist at the Lake Champlain Fish and Wildlife Conservation Office in Vermont.
Chris Smith is a fish and wildlife biologist, and leads the Partners for Fish and Wildlife Program at the Lake Champlain Fish and Wildlife Conservation office in Vermont
Wetlands are extraordinary, diverse places that provide critical habitat for countless birds, mammals, fish, plants, and invertebrates. From nesting habitat for wood ducks to spawning grounds for northern pike, wetlands are vitally important to many fish and wildlife species. In addition to wildlife habitat, wetlands provide numerous benefits such as flood protection, removing sediment and pollutants from lakes and rivers, and providing recreation opportunities.
May is American Wetlands Month. In honor of these critical life support systems that protect our natural, cultural and economic resources, we bring you this inspiring video that highlights the incredible value and beauty of our natural world.
Wetlands are among the world’s most productive environments. They allow for biological diversity and help maintain ecological balances in the natural world. Photo credit: USFWS
For the past 8 years, the Service’s Partners for Fish and Wildlife Program has collaborated with the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, the Vermont Agency of Natural Resources and dozens of willing landowners to help restore more than 3,000 acres of wetlands on private land for the benefit of wildlife and people in the Lake Champlain Basin.
Working in partnership, the project combined the funding and easement expertise of the NRCS with the biological and technical expertise of the Partners for Fish and Wildlife Program which assessed potential sites, conducted outreach to landowners, surveyed, designed and handled permitting and oversaw the implementation of these projects.
Ospreys are just one species that use wetland habitat for survival. As part of the restoration project, a team of biologists built a nesting platform to help attract ospreys and other birds. Photo credit: USFWS
Vicky Drew, the NRCS State Conservationist in Vermont, said of the partnership, “The success of NRCS’ wetland restoration projects is greatly facilitated by the expertise and dedication of our U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service partners. The cooperative working relationship that we have developed here in Vermont empowers us to restore and protect more wetland acres.”
This video highlights the success of the partnership while showcasing the significance of wetlands for both the natural world and the people that share it.
The Lake Champlain Fish and Wildlife Conservation Office