Major planning documents that influence and guide management of breeding birds in Vermont.
Vermont’s Wildlife Action Plan (WAP)
- Landmark document, offering a comprehensive framework to guide wildlife conservation in the state.
- Based on extensive input from experts, the plan provided comprehensive assessments and management recommendations for Species of Greatest Conservation Need (SCGN) “to prevent wildlife from becoming endangered or threatened.”
- SCGN species were determined based on their rarity, population trends, vulnerability of habitat, and threats to populations.
- Audience ranged from the individual landowner to statewide organizations and policymakers
- Slated to be revisited and updated regularly. Subsequent SWG funds have assisted projects that address priorities in the WAP, including the Breeding Bird Atlas.
- Both of the atlases and the BBS served as key data sources.
- WAPs were developed with a regional context firmly in mind; prioritization takes into account the role of the state in the species’ overall status.
- Species priority rankings and management recommendations from Partners-In-Flight (PIF) and the North American Bird Conservation Initiative (NABCI), National Audubon Society’s Watch List, and the American Bird Conservancy’s Green List were consulted.
- Scheduled to be updated in 2015. Must maintain its relevance amidst changes on the landscape, fluxes in bird populations, evolving threats and opportunities, and advances in research and conservation paradigms. Climate change must be addressed.
NABCI’s Bird Conservation Region (BCR) plans (clickable map of regions for plans)
- Provide concrete conservation guidelines for each region
- Each BCR has a “responsibility” for the species it hosts, based on how important populations within the region are to the long-term viability of the species.
- Includes estimates of the relative contributions of states or provinces to the populations of species.
- Provide concrete management objectives and recommendations.
PIF Landbird Conservation Plan
- Details bird conservation objectives, research and monitoring needs, implementation strategies, and management recommendations for major habitats within each of its designated physiographic regions.
- Three of the regions include Vermont: Eastern Spruce-Hardwood Forest (northern half of Vermont), Northern New England (southern half of Vermont), and St. Lawrence Plain (Champlain Valley biophysical region in Vermont).
- A modified, updated document was issued in 2010: PIF’s “Tri-national vision for landbird conservation,” which included Mexico.
Landscape Conservation Cooperatives (LCC)
- Most recent initiative – likely a guide in the future.
- USFWS project guided by a consortium of conservation-based agencies and organizations
- Goal: “Seek to identify best practices, connect efforts, identify gaps, and avoid duplication through improved conservation planning and design.”
- Work at a landscape scale, in partnership, to deliver conservation, particularly in the context of impending climate change.
- As part of the LCC’s North Atlantic cooperative, Vermont agencies and organizations would benefit from syncing and coordinating their conservation planning within the higher-level conservation goals developed by LCCs.