Last week the Division of Fisheries & Wildlife (MassWildLife) awarded $341,396 in grants to 13 municipalities, conservation organizations, and private landowners to improve habitat for wildlife on 698 acres in 14 communities.

In its fifth year, MassWildlife’s Habitat Management Grant Program provides financial assistance to private and municipal landowners of conserved lands to improve and manage habitat for wildlife deemed in greatest conservation need and certain game species. The projects complement ongoing habitat management efforts on state lands and expand opportunities for hunting, fishing, wildlife viewing, and other outdoor recreation.

Energy and Environmental Affairs Secretary Kathleen A. Theoharides said the Habitat Management Grant Program “furthers the Baker-Polito Administration’s commitment to habitat management and wildlife protection. Conservation science has repeatedly demonstrated that continuous active habitat management activities for common and rare wildlife and plants are necessary for ecological resiliency and diversity.”

Department of Fish and Game Commissioner Ron Amidon said that habitat management “is key to benefiting the uncommon birds, mammals, reptiles, and amphibians which are declining because their habitats are uncommon.  This program provides us the opportunity to expand our habitat management footprint and improve recreational opportunities for sportsmen and women, birders, naturalists, and other outdoor enthusiasts.”

Division of Fisheries and Wildlife Director Dr. Mark Tisa said, “Fish and wildlife habitat management for both rare and common species and to enhance wildlife-related recreation opportunities is a top priority for MassWildlife. These grants help protect everyone’s investment in wildlife, habitat, and the enjoyment of outdoor activities such as fishing, hunting, or watching wildlife.”

Recipients of the 2019 MassWildlife Habitat Management Grants:
• Barnstable: The Town of Barnstable was awarded $23,570 to use prescribed fire to improve pitch pine-oak woodland habitat at the West Barnstable Conservation Area.
• Edgartown: The Nature Conservancy was awarded $25,889 to improve sandplain grasslands on the Katama Plains.
• Great Barrington: The Nature Conservancy was awarded $28,576 to create and improve old field and shrubland habitats at the Schenob Brook Preserve.
• Hardwick and North Brookfield: The East Quabbin Land Trust was awarded $13,642 to conduct invasive species control at Mandell Hill and Wendemuth Meadow.
• Lenox: The Town of Lenox was awarded $26,810 to remove the invasive hardy kiwi plant at Kennedy Park and Mass Audubon’s Pleasant Valley Wildlife Sanctuary.
• Marshfield: Mass Aududon was awarded $40,814 to perform field restoration work at the Daniel Webster Wildlife Sanctuary.
• Mashpee: The Orenda Wildlife Land Trust was awarded $16,704 to conduct a prescribed burn to improve wildlife habitat.
• Nantucket: The Nantucket Conservation Foundation was awarded $9,433 to manage heathlands on the Middle Moors property.
• North Andover: The Trustees of Reservations was awarded $44,272 to conduct habitat restoration work at the Weir Hill Reservation.
• Orange: Fred and Heather Heyes were awarded $49,681 to create young forest habitat.
• Sandwich: The Town of Sandwich was awarded $23,570 to conduct a prescribed burn on the Maple Swamp Conservation Area.
• South Lee: South Lee Associates was awarded $13,655 for efforts to control invasive species on Housatonic River properties.
• Yarmouth: The Town of Yarmouth was awarded $24,780 to conduct a prescribed fire to restore pitch pine-oak woodlands.

Here is a list of Habitat Management Resources.