Karner Blue Butterfly Volunteer Opportunity

The Baldwin/White Cloud Ranger District, located in western lower Michigan, is still looking for volunteers to assist with monitoring and management activities for the federally endangered Karner blue butterfly in 2011.  Volunteers are needed the weeks of June 27th, July 5th, July 11th, July 18th, and July 25th to help count Karner blue butterflies and measure habitat variables such as wild lupine cover.  The data collected will be used to assess the status of Karner blue butterfly populations, and evaluate the effectiveness of different management strategies for restoring Karner blue butterfly habitat.  There are opportunities for individuals of all skill levels to participate.  Training will be provided.  Interested parties can volunteer during weekdays, for a few days, or a week or more.  Mileage reimbursement and housing may be available upon request.  

Volunteer participation has allowed the Baldwin/White Cloud Ranger District to dramatically increase its management and monitoring activities for the Karner blue butterfly.  The volunteers, partners, and U.S. Forest Service personnel that have made the Karner blue butterfly recovery program a success were recently recognized for their achievements with the receipt of two prestigious national awards: Wings Across the Americas Award for Butterfly Conservation, and Making Tracks with the Forest National Award for outstanding accomplishments in the Habitat Management Program.  To those who volunteered during past field seasons, thank you and congratulations!  Your participation made these awards possible!  

The assistance of volunteers is vital to meet our recovery goals!  Please choose to volunteer this year and help conserve a locally endangered species.  For those of you who may have already signed-up to volunteer this coming field season, thank you for being so generous with your time!  If you or someone you know is interested in participating in the 2011 field season, please contact Dr. Heather Keough, District Wildlife Biologist, at 231-745-4631 x 3111 or hkeough@fs.fed.us.

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