Establishing a Conservation Partnership
Conservation partnerships come in all shapes and sizes, although most are organized around a central theme. It may be as broad as bird habitat conservation in southeastern Colorado, such as the Prairie and Wetlands Focus Area Committee, or as narrow as a local burn association in Oklahoma.
Starting a local conservation partnership can be a daunting task. If you aren’t already located in an area covered by a group, start by discussing your ideas with a local representative from your state wildlife agency. You may also want to consider these key questions to help crystallize your thinking on what may be involved.
There are a variety of habitats that need to be appropriately managed in order to maintain healthy bird populations. For an overview, review the needs described in the appropriate PLJV Area Implementation Plan for your area. If you are currently working with a local conservation partnership, you may want to examine the available resources in your area and determine how your group could help drive appropriate conservation.
Determining where your local conservation partnership should concentrate its efforts deserves some thought and consideration, especially if your group is broadly focused. Looking at the PLJV Area Implementation Plan for your area is a good first step towards determining your priorities.
Funding is generally the biggest issue that local conservation partnerships face. This can be in order to simply maintain the organization or to have funds available through outside programs — such as the Natural Resources Conservation Service Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) or State Wildlife Grants — to recommend to landowners. Once you know about your goals and priorities, you can begin looking for available funding opportunities.