Spring is coming early in 3/4 of national parks, according to a new study. Awesome? Not so much. As flowers bloom earlier every year, it’s disrupting the link between the wildflowers and the arrival of birds, bees, and butterflies that feed on and pollinate the flowers. In Shenandoah, an earlier spring is giving invasive plants a head start, and they’re displacing native wildflowers, leading to costly management issues.
Before the 1960s almost everything about living openly as a lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender (LGBT) person was illegal. New York City laws against homosexual activities were particularly harsh. The Stonewall Uprising on June 28, 1969 is a milestone in the quest for LGBT civil rights and provided momentum for a movement.
Vine Creek Ranch at Death Valley National Park. Steady drought and record summer heat make Death Valley a land of extremes. Towering peaks are frosted with winter snow. Rare rainstorms bring vast fields of wildflowers. Lush oases harbor tiny fish and refuge for wildlife and humans. Despite its morbid name, a great diversity of life survives in Death Valley.
Located 2,600 miles southwest of Hawaii, the National Park of American Samoa is the most remote unit of the National Park System and the U.S. National Park south of the Equator. The Park spreads across three islands, 9,500 acres of tropical rainforest, and 4,000 acres of ocean, including coral reefs. While remote, the islands of American Samoa, true to the meaning of the word Samoa (Islands of Sacred Earth), are welcoming and offer beautiful landscapes and centuries of culture and history.
Salazar Renews Nation's Commitment to Wetland and Waterfowl Conservation Blueprint
Office of the Secretary
Revised North American Waterfowl Management Plan Signed at Ducks Unlimited National Conference
NASHVILLE, Tenn.—Today at the 75th anniversary National Conference of Ducks Unlimited, Inc., Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar signed the 2012 Revision of the North American Waterfowl Management Plan, reaffirming the Department's commitment to one of the largest and most successful continent-wide conservation initiatives ever undertaken.
“The 2012 Revision of the North American Waterfowl Management Plan provides a renewed and energized vision for the future of waterfowl and wetlands conservation,” Salazar said. “The blueprint lays out an adaptable waterfowl management strategy that leverages international resources to ensure abundant waterfowl populations and preserves habitat to support hunting and other recreational uses.”
Waterfowl are among North America's most valued natural resources. In 2006, an estimated 87.5 million Americans spent $122.3 billion on wildlife-related recreation, including 1.8 million waterfowl hunters who spent nearly $1 billion on trips and equipment, according to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
“The importance of waterfowl, in both ecological and economic terms, has placed waterfowl managers at the forefront of the conservation profession,” said U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Director Dan Ashe. “It's fitting that we're signing today's agreement in the presence of Ducks Unlimited, an organization that has really led the way when it comes to conserving habitat for the benefit of waterfowl, other wildlife, and people. This Revision acknowledges and embraces a 21st century approach to landscape-level conservation that is truly community-driven.”
First signed in 1986 by the United States and Canada, with Mexico becoming a signatory in 1994, the North American Waterfowl Management Plan (NAWMP) is an international strategy for conserving migratory waterfowl throughout the continent. It has remained a leading model for other international conservation plans, in large measure because it is an evolving document that is updated periodically with engagement and input from the waterfowl conservation community.
The North American Waterfowl Management Plan is implemented largely by public-private partnerships known as Migratory Bird Joint Ventures. As of 2011, the Joint Ventures in the U.S. and Canada had collectively conserved more than 15.7 million acres of habitat. Over the course of their history, 18 U.S. Joint Venture partnerships have leveraged every dollar of allocated Congressional funds into an average of $35 in matching funds.
Available at www.nawmprevision.org, the 2012 NAWMP Revision sets forth three overarching goals for waterfowl conservation: 1) abundant and resilient waterfowl populations to support hunting and other recreational uses without imperiling habitat; 2) sufficient wetlands and related habitats to sustain waterfowl populations at desired levels, while providing places to recreate and ecological services that benefit society; and 3) growing numbers of waterfowl hunters, other conservationists and citizens who enjoy and actively support waterfowl and wetlands conservation. The third goal, new to the Plan under the 2012 revision, underscores the importance of people to the success of waterfowl and wetlands conservation.
The signing of the 2012 NAWMP Revision highlights the commitment of Mexico, Canada and the United States to developing common objectives that reflect the interrelated nature of waterfowl management and aligning and coordinating efforts to reach those objectives.