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Canton News

3/24/2015 - RSVP Deadline is March 17th: CLT Dinner and Silent Auction

RSVP Deadline is March 17th:
State’s Wildlife Action Plan is topic at Canton Land Trust Dinner and Silent Auction

Public is invited to program on wildlife conservation by biologist Julie Victoria.

“We all make daily decisions that affect fish and wildlife and natural places - and we all need to work to protect them.”

The Canton Land Conservation Trust invites the public to its Tues. March 24 Annual Dinner and Silent Auction, featuring a talk on “CT Wildlife and the Wildlife Action Plan” by wildlife biologist Julie Victoria.

Ms. Victoria will discuss the now-underway revision of this blueprint for conserving the state’s wildlife resources, including species of greatest conservation need, and the actions needed to address threats to those species and their habitats.  Every Connecticut resident has an important role to play, said Ms. Victoria. “We all make daily decisions that affect fish and wildlife and natural places - and we all need to work to protect them. Most of our state is in private ownership and that includes ordinary backyards to forests and freshwater wetlands, so a combined effort involving all needs to be considered.”

The evening will begin at La Trattoria Restaurant in Canton with a 6 p.m. silent auction and cash bar, followed by dinner at 7 p.m. and Ms. Victoria’s talk at 8 p.m. The cost is $40 for members, $45 for non-members and $20 for the talk only. See www.cantonlandtrust.org for details and an RSVP form (reservation deadline is March 17).

Ms. Victoria is a retired wildlife biologist with Connecticut’s Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP). In a 32-year career, she supervised and worked on programs dealing with raptors, shorebirds, reptiles and amphibians, and invertebrates. She is currently a wildlife biologist with Terwilliger Consulting, Inc., and is assisting the DEEP with Connecticut’s Wildlife Action Plan.  The draft Plan includes 15 pages of fish, mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, invertebrates and plants at greatest risk.  Of those hundreds of species, said Ms. Victoria, “as a group, bats are the species that generate the most concern. About 90% of the Little Brown Bat population is lost and about 50% of the Big Brown Bat population. When only losing 50% of a population gives you hope, you realize the seriousness of this issue.” The last Plan had “not anticipated diseases like white-nose syndrome in bats and chytrid fungus in amphibians. We will have a place for unanticipated diseases in this Plan,” she said.  Connecticut completed its current Wildlife Action Plan in 2005. Connecticut, along with other states across the country, is currently working on revisions to this plan that will establish both a state and national framework for conserving our fish and wildlife, including their habitats, for the next 10 years. As part of this effort, the DEEP’s Wildlife Division is revising Connecticut's Species of Greatest Conservation Need list, including new information on climate change and its impacts to wildlife conservation, updated resource mapping, and refining conservation threats. According to DEEP, “Participation by conservation partners, including academic institutions, land trusts and the public is a key to making the revised WAP an effective tool for conserving Connecticut's diversity of wildlife resources for future generations.”

The Canton Land Conservation Trust is a non-profit conservation organization formed in 1972 to acquire, preserve and protect land of scenic, natural or historic value within the Town of Canton; to maintain this land and its plant and animal life using the best conservation, wildlife habitat and forestry practices available; and to promote public awareness, understanding and enjoyment of the land. The Land Trust currently manages more than 2,000 acres in Canton.