Michigan's Pheasant Restoration Initiative Accelerates Habitat Work

The 2017 Michigan Pheasant Restoration Initiative Annual Report, highlighting accomplishments of initiative coalition partners last year, is now available on the Michigan Pheasant Restoration Initiative webpage

Achievements outlined in the report include: 
  • 12 pheasant cooperatives are actively working to improve habitat, and 30 cooperatives are in development.
  • A new position was created in Pheasants Forever to accelerate grassland restoration on state lands through a program called Adopt-A-State-Game-Area.
  • On state game areas, 1,960 acres of grasslands were enhanced, 297 acres of grasslands were established, 342 acres of food plots were planted, and 443 wetland acres were enhanced. 
  • MPRI coalition partners helped to enhance 5,702 acres of grasslands, establish 282 acres of grassland, plant 11,250 acres of food plots, enhance 800 wetland acres and restore 129 wetland acres.
  • The DNR provided technical and financial assistance to 22 landowners with 540 acres of improved habitat. The MPRI Farm Bill biologists provided technical and financial assistance to 601 landowners with 5,639 acres of improved habitat.
  • There are currently 200 properties and 25,000 acres enrolled in the Hunting Access Program.
  • Over $200,000 was granted to MPRI projects through the Wildlife Habitat Grant Program. 
  • The DNR received a $500,000 Competitive State Wildlife Grant from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to study grassland management techniques. Funds will be used over the next two years to monitor the impact of prescribed fire and disking on plant and pollinating insect diversity in established grasslands.  
  • The MPRI coalition offered 146 education and recruitment events in 2016, with nearly 10,500 participants. 
“The MPRI coalition continues to make great strides in restoring habitat, providing access and introducing young people to outdoor skills,” said Pheasants Forever regional coordinator Bill VanderZouwen.

“It is through this group of partners that we have been able to make such great strides for the initiative,” said Al Stewart, DNR upland game bird specialist. “Each year, we continue to build on the successes of the previous year and move closer to meeting the MPRI goals. It’s exciting to be involved with so many partners that are committed to making a difference.”

The Michigan Pheasant Restoration Initiative is a conservation initiative to restore and enhance Michigan pheasant habitat, populations, and hunting opportunities on private and public lands via pheasant cooperatives. The initiative works by acquiring state, federal and other partner resources to assist landowners in the cooperatives to improve wildlife habitat on their properties and by improving habitat on selected state game areas, recreation areas or other public lands.

For more information about the Michigan Pheasant Restoration Initiative, and about pheasant hunting, visit www.michigan.gov/pheasant.

Note to editors: Contact – Holly Vaughn, 313-396-6863.

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