Saving New England's Wildlife

Glossy Ibis, MA photo Monkmans 

OSI’s Priority Ecological Areas

OSI is giving preference to State Wildlife Action Plan projects located in three priority ecological areas: Maine's bold coast, the coastal plain of Maine, New Hampshire and Massachusetts; and the ecologically rich forests of western Massachusetts and central New Hampshire. (Map) These areas were chosen as priorities based on 1) biological diversity, 2) immediate or near term threat, 3) land conservation opportunities, 4) high percentage of species of greatest conservation need, and 5) regional and national significance of the wildlife resources at risk.

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The Bold Coast of Maine

 

Atlantic Puffins, Maine photo MonkmansWith its rocky headlands, off-shore islands, spruce fir forests, and the rich Cobscook Bay, this iconic landscape is home to abundant wildlife. Species in critical need of conservation, such as the Atlantic puffin, razorbill, roseate and arctic tern nest on offshore islands; harlequin ducks winter along the rough coastline; large flocks of shorebirds use tidal estuaries. Passerines such as the Canada Warbler nest in conifer forests.

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The Tri-state Coastal Plain

 

Deer Tracks on Beach Dune, MA by MonkmansSalt marsh estuaries, barrier beaches, oak-pine forests and pitch pine patches give the coastal plain its rich biodiversity. New England cottontail, Blanding’s turtle, and Nelson’s sharp-tailed sparrow make their last stands in this coastal plain shared by Maine, New Hampshire, and Massachusetts. Estuaries shelter migratory waterfowl, loons, and shorebirds and barrier beaches support least tern and piping plover.

 

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The Rich Forests

 

Forested Wetlands, MA photo MonkmansThe hills, valleys and river bottoms of western Massachusetts and New Hampshire grow rich forests abundant with wildlife. Deep, sweet soils with large blocks of forest, lead to high biodiversity. Species in critical need include the wood thrush, Canada warbler, bog turtle, Jefferson's salamander, Eastern meadowlark, and bobcat all find refuge here.

 

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