WILDLIFE DIVISION Managing Connecticut’s Wildlife

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<ul><li><p>WILDLIFEDIVISIONManaging Connecticuts Wildlife</p></li><li><p>The CT DEP Wildlife Division is mandated by law to conserve and manage all forms of wildlife in the state.</p></li><li><p>Management ActivitiesHabitat ManagementEndangered speciesReintroducing native speciesHunting/TrappingResearch ProjectsMonitoringBandingTelemetryTechnical Assistance Educational Activities</p></li><li><p>Habitat ManagementManaging Habitat for imperiled speciesEach year protective fencing is installed around the nesting sites of two threatened shorebirds: the Piping Plover and the Least Tern.</p></li><li><p>Managing HabitatFields on state owned and managed properties are assessed annually to determine if they need prescribed burns or mowing to restore old field habitats and delay succession.These fields habitats are critical for a variety of wildlife including listed grassland birds such as grasshopper sparrows, American Kestrels, Upland Sandpiper and others. Meadowlarks and bobolinks need vast expanses of field habitat for nesting and breeding.</p></li><li><p>Managing HabitatThe habitat management program also enhances wildlife habitat through forest management plans that may include maintaining vegetative buffers or retaining snag and den trees that are important nesting sites for birds and mammals.</p></li><li><p>Managing HabitatLarge tracts of forested lands are managed for neotropical migrants such as the Scarlet Tanager, the Black-and-White Warbler, Ovenbirds and others.Wildlife Division staff also help to identify and review proposals to buy new lands.</p></li><li><p>Managing HabitatAn important component of the habitat management program is the management of marshland.Sometimes this involves phragmites control, maintaining dikes and other water control structures or creating potholes for waterfowl.</p></li><li><p>Managing HabitatAgricultural Agreements with Farmers Approximately 3000 acres maintained as farmland through lease agreements WHIP Program LIP Program</p></li><li><p>Managing Habitat for a SpeciesProviding, maintaining and checking boxes installed for wood ducks</p></li><li><p>Managing Habitat for a SpeciesEastern BluebirdEastern Screech Owl</p></li><li><p>Managing Habitat byremoving non-native speciesPurple Loosestrife</p></li><li><p>Monitoring Habitats for unique speciesThe state-endangered Bog turtle lives in calcareous (containing calcium carbonate, calcium or lime) wetlands such as sphagnum bogs, wet meadows and wet pastures. Biologists have surveyed a number of historic and new locations for the presence or absence of habitat and/or turtles. </p></li><li><p>Monitoring Habitats for unique speciesPuritan Tiger Beetles are only found in 2 places in the world, one being CT.Boat surveys of the CT River were conducted to search for other locations where beetles may be translocated.</p></li><li><p>Monitoring Habitats for unique speciesHistoric locations are surveyed to assess the population status of a freshwater mussel called the dwarf wedge mussel, a state and federally endangered species. Freshwater mussels are important bioindicators and many of the native CT species have experienced population declines. </p></li><li><p>Reintroducing Species to Native HabitatsFound to have high survival rates and successful reproductionNow common throughout CT.FisherConsidered extirpated by 1900s due to logging and overexploitationReforestation allowed fishers to move from Massachusetts into northeastern parts of CT1988 fishers were trapped from NH and VT and relocated to the Northwestern parts of CTMonitored through radio-tracking &amp; snow tracking</p></li><li><p>Wild Turkey Were eliminated by the early 1800s due to logging, unregulated hunting and a series of harsh winters </p><p>Free roaming wild turkeys were live-captured in other states (with the use of rocket nets) and translocated to CT. </p><p>Between 1975 and 1992, 356 wild turkeys were released at 18 sites throughout CT. Now present in all 169 towns. </p><p>We have regulated hunting season.</p></li><li><p>Aerial and field population censuses allow for the monitoring of wildlife populations.Each spring waterfowl biologists count waterfowl seen at ponds, marshes and swamps within randomly selected, one kilometer square plots. In CT, there are 50 plots in inland habitats and six in coastal tidal habitats.Winter surveys are often conducted to search for deer throughout the state or waterfowl along the coast, major rivers and selected lakes. Results help indicate population trends and can be used to help determine bag limits and season lengths for duck hunting seasons.</p></li><li><p>Monitoring Large MammalsWinter Tracking Bobcats FisherCoyote</p><p> Sighting records -Black Bear, Bobcat &amp; Fisher</p></li><li><p>Monitoring Large MammalsSighting recordsBased on reports collected from the public and from hunters from 1996-2002 Moose have been present in up to 25 towns in Connecticut.</p><p>As of 2006, at least 100 moose occupy CT.</p><p>Research Project initiated in 2007.</p></li><li><p>Mid-Winter Bald Eagle SurveyOccurs every year on the 2nd Weekend in January. Volunteers assist Wildlife Division to count the number of individuals throughout the state.Provides an index of the species winter use of CTNumbers can be compared from year to yearIn 2006 66 eagles were countedIn summer 2006 9 breeding pairs, 6 nests produced 12 chicks</p></li><li><p>Grassland Bird SurveyThe grassland bird survey is part of a statewide initiative to more thoroughly inventory CTs grassland bird population using techniques that have been standardized by Partners in Flight for grassland bird research projects throughout the northeast. </p><p>The majority of species considered grassland birds are already listed as endangered, threatened, or species of special concern under the Connecticut Endangered Species Act and are quickly disappearing from historic sites due to habitat changes.</p></li><li><p>Bird SurveysThe Wildlife Division coordinates a number of bird surveys annually:Woodland RaptorsWetland CallbackOwl SurveysWhippoorwill and Nighthawk surveysBarn Owl SurveysShrubland/Grassland SurveysChimney Swifts</p></li><li><p>Woodcock surveys and research</p></li><li><p>Mosquito Sampling W.H.A.M.M.EEE &amp; WNV</p></li><li><p>HUNTING is an important wildlife management tool. Regulated hunting helps keep populations at the carrying capacity of the habitat and at a level compatible with peoples use of the land.Data collected at check stations provides important information for wildlife managers.</p></li><li><p>DistributionAge Weight SexAntler beams (Yearlings) Excellent: 20.0 mm + Good: 18.0 to 19.9 mm Fair: 15.5 to 17.9 mm Poor: 12.0 to 15.4 mmHerd Assessment: Biological data collection</p></li><li><p>3000Connecticuts Deer Population Trend1900076000</p><p>Chart1</p><p>12</p><p>370</p><p>750</p><p>1500</p><p>3000</p><p>4750</p><p>7000</p><p>11000</p><p>19000</p><p>29000</p><p>50000</p><p>76000</p><p>1974</p><p>2000</p><p>1936</p><p>Year</p><p>Deer Population</p><p>Sheet1</p><p>Year189619061916192619361945195519641974198319932000</p><p>1237075015003000475070001100019000290005000076000</p><p>Sheet1</p><p>0</p><p>0</p><p>0</p><p>0</p><p>0</p><p>0</p><p>0</p><p>0</p><p>0</p><p>0</p><p>0</p><p>0</p><p>1974</p><p>2000</p><p>Year</p><p>Deer Population</p><p>Connecticut's Deer Population Trend</p><p>Sheet2</p><p>12</p><p>19000</p><p>50000</p><p>76000</p><p>1936</p><p>3000</p><p>Sheet2</p><p>12</p><p>370</p><p>750</p><p>1500</p><p>3000</p><p>4750</p><p>7000</p><p>11000</p><p>19000</p><p>29000</p><p>50000</p><p>76000</p><p>1974</p><p>2000</p><p>1993</p><p>Year</p><p>Deer Population</p><p>Connecticut's Deer Population Trend</p><p>Sheet3</p></li><li><p>Replacement TagsExtended SeasonExtended Season - Jan-Annually monitor and assess population size. . . What is the State doing? -Modify hunting seasons to increase efficiencyArchery Harvest5 yr period114</p><p>Chart2</p><p>139466</p><p>119426</p><p>93474</p><p>109642</p><p>137702</p><p>111864</p><p>Zone 11</p><p>Zone 4</p><p>Zone 4</p><p>zone 11</p><p>Sheet1</p><p>zone 11199619971998199920002001</p><p>Bethel72212122315</p><p>Bridgeport000100</p><p>Danbury402226282626</p><p>Darien6410151552</p><p>Easton301543485739</p><p>Fairfield373120293953</p><p>Greenwich5431576162112</p><p>Monroe141013282716</p><p>New Canaan181930537382</p><p>Newtown595752537592</p><p>Norwalk1089116</p><p>Redding474243557174</p><p>Ridgefield706755935990</p><p>Shelton141820181820</p><p>Stratford350368</p><p>Stamford172410162533</p><p>Trumbull5327211</p><p>Weston191821414254</p><p>Westport0991469</p><p>Wilton252943586572</p><p>total466426474642702864</p><p>Zone 4</p><p>Andover853775</p><p>Bolton785995</p><p>Columbia3885117</p><p>coventry182212142117</p><p>Ellington1076134</p><p>Mansfield212610131917</p><p>Somers6741188</p><p>Stafford291913192215</p><p>Tolland77109128</p><p>Vernon6175108</p><p>Willington24915161517</p><p>Total13911993109137111</p><p>Statewide269123562189260427212626</p><p>Sheet1</p><p>000</p><p>000</p><p>000</p><p>000</p><p>000</p><p>000</p><p>Greenwich</p><p>New Canaan</p><p>Darien</p><p>GSLA</p><p>Deer committee</p><p>Replacement tags</p><p>Deer committee</p><p>Darien</p><p>Greenwich</p><p>New Canaan</p><p>Sheet2</p><p>=</p><p>Sheet2</p><p>139466</p><p>119426</p><p>93474</p><p>109642</p><p>137702</p><p>111864</p><p>Zone 11</p><p>Zone 4</p><p>Zone 4</p><p>zone 11</p><p>Sheet3</p></li><li><p>Marking Techniques are an important tool in wildlife research.Waterfowl Banding occurs every fallAllows wildlife managers to trace local movements, estimate population changes and determine a species lifespan.</p></li><li><p>Resident Canada Goose StudyA four year study allowed us to determine the movements and survival of adult and juvenile resident geese. </p></li><li><p>Banding of State Listed SpeciesEach year young Ospreys, Bald Eagles and Peregrine Falcons are banded by DEP biologists.In 2006 we banded 12 Peregrine chicks and 10 Bald Eagle Chicks.</p></li><li><p>Telemetry plays an important role in wildlife research.Raccoon with collarUsed to determine Home Range and Movement Patterns of Animals</p></li><li><p>Rattlesnake ProjectTook place from 1998-2001 to track rattlesnakes implanted with radio transmitters. It was found that snakes move quite a distance from the wintering dens throughout the summer. Movement patterns mapped by this project are helping DEP land managers prioritize land protection efforts where the snakes are found.</p></li><li><p>Tree-Roosting Bat ProjectTree-roosted bats such as the Red Bat, the Hoary Bat and the Silver-haired bat are all species of Special Concern in Connecticut. Very little information exists regarding their roosting habitat requirementstherefore, our biologists have been trying to track the movements of these species.</p></li><li><p>OBJECTIVES:Determine Population size and distributionLook at effects and distribution of Deer vehicle accidentsDetermine Home range size, movementsDetermine Perception of deer population by peopleAcceptability of removal methodsAre there Incentives to harvest more female deer?Perceptions and experiencesDeer Management Projects</p></li><li><p>New England Cottontail &amp; Eastern Cottontail ProjectInitiated in January of 2002.The purpose is to assess movements, home range use, habitat needs, survival and causes of mortality of both the New England and Eastern cottontail rabbits in Connecticut.</p></li><li><p>Black Bear ProjectWildlife Division Biologists have been trapping, marking, radio collaring and releasing bears to determine population size and their home range.Last year we went in on the dens of 12 radio collared sows. The average litter size was two cubs.</p></li><li><p>Technical AssistanceNuisance Wildlife Control Operators (NWCO)Trained &amp; Licensed to remove animals in, on or around homes</p><p>Wildlife RehabilitatorsTrained and appointed to care for sick, injured and orphaned wildlife</p></li><li><p>Nuisance Beaver Control Provide technical assistance and volunteer trappers for individuals that have beaver damage.Crop Damage Permits Provide technical assistance and permits to farmers experiencing deer damage.</p></li><li><p>Living with Wildlife</p></li><li><p>Master Wildlife Conservationist ProgramThe Wildlife Division provides adult volunteers with eight weeks of training in wildlife conservation, ecology, management and interpretation. Upon completion of the coursework, the candidates have one year to complete their volunteer service agreement by leading interpretive walks, library programs, school presentations, habitat enhancement projects or assisting wildlife biologists with their research. </p><p>Contact Laura Rogers-Castro at 860-675- 8130 or laura.rogers-castro@po.state.ct.us.</p></li><li><p>Connecticuts LandownerIncentive Program (LIP)Connecticuts LandownerIncentive Program (LIP)What Is LIP?The Landowner Incentive Program (LIP) is a technical assistance and cost-sharing program designed to benefit species at risk. LIP will fund habitat projects on private land containing priority habitats that support species at risk.</p><p>Priority Habitats Supporting the Majority of Connecticuts At-Risk Species</p><p>Early successional stage habitats grasslands, old fields, shrublands, seedling/sapling habitat.Wetlands tidal and freshwater.Imperiled Communities, especially those within these habitats.</p></li><li><p>Connecticuts ComprehensiveWildlife Conservation Strategy</p></li><li><p>Questions?</p></li></ul>

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