Summer 2018 - In This Issue:
©Appalachian Corridor
News from Staying Connected

Dear SCI partners and supporters,

As the summer winds down and we settle into fall routines, I am pleased to share with you this collection of stories from around the SCI region and beyond. I would like to call your attention to a new and inspiring report from the Network for Landscape Conservation. The report explores recent innovations, on-the-ground examples, and action-oriented strategies that are advancing landscape conservation. Our work in the Northern Appalachian/Acadian region is part of a major national and global trend towards horizontal collaborative conservation at the landscape scale. 

I invite you to join us for our upcoming events. This fall and winter we are hosting a series of webinars, and we will hold an all-partner retreat in May in the Eastern Townships of Quebec. A team of SCI partners is already busy preparing for this event, so please mark your calendars!

Best wishes,
Jessie Levine,  SCI Coordinator
Pathways Forward: Progress and Priorities in Landscape Conservation

The Network for Landscape Conservation has just released an important new publication: Pathways Forward: Progress and Priorities in Landscape Conservation. The report captures the insights of 200 conservation leaders from the U.S., Canada, and Mexico who convened for two days last November in Shepherdstown, West Virginia, at the National Forum on Landscape Conservation to strategize on the rapidly growing practice of conservation at the landscape scale. The report assesses the state of the field, showcases many innovative examples, and recommends ways to further advance this essential conservation approach- together and in our own landscapes. Pathways Forward captures key trends, innovative case studies, and major new facts and figures in support of landscape conservation. It is both a call to action to conserve our irreplaceable natural and cultural landscapes, and a celebration of how a transformative approach to conservation is gearing up to do just that. Read the report .
Launch of the Roads and Wildlife Portal

SCI partners from The Nature Conservancy's Adirondack Chapter and SCI coordinator Jessie Levine collaborated with the Ontario Road Ecology Group (OREG) to develop a new regional resource for transportation agency staff to share information about road mitigation projects, guidance, designs, and studies related to maintaining and restoring connected habitats for fish and wildlife. The new interactive bilingual website, called the Roads and Wildlife Portal, is now live at We are continuing to improve the site and add additional documents, with the goal of inspiring new work across the region to make roads safer for wildlife and people. Please contact Jessie Levine if you have resources to add to the portal. 
©Appalachian Corridor
Learning About Connectivity in the Northern Green Mountains
 of Quebec

During May, June, and July 2018, Appalachian Corridor hosted three field visits for partners to priority connectivity areas alongside Autoroute 10 in the northern Green mountains of Quebec. The objectives were to train partners on issues related to connectivity, provide updates on the work of Appalachian Corridor in these key areas, and encourage partners to develop concrete solutions. Participants included leaders from the municipalities (including five municipal mayors and four municipal environment directors), regional municipalities, and local conservation groups. There was a great deal of interest in the underlying science and work underway, and a desire from the municipalities to incorporate connectivity into their plans. For more information, contact Mélanie Lelièvre. 
©NH Fish and Game 
State of New Hampshire Releases Report on Wildlife Corridors

In 2017-2018, the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department (NHFG) partnered with the Department of Transportation (NHDOT) and Department of Environmental Services (NHDES) to research wildlife corridors. The research topics included identifying (1) existing and needed wildlife corridors, (2) voluntary mechanisms that affect wildlife corridors, and (3) any existing statutes, rules and regulations that affect wildlife corridors. The new report includes recommendations to support funding, partnerships, outreach efforts, and the development of tools that support priority wildlife corridors. For more information, contact Sandra Houghton.
Improving Wildlife Passage in Western Massachusetts

Over the summer, The Nature Conservancy in Massachusetts, with considerable volunteer help, surveyed road-stream crossings under the Massachusetts Turnpike (I-90) to better understand where fish and wildlife can find safe passage. There are over 100 underpasses, pipe culverts, bridges, and box culverts on the western Massachusetts portion of I-90, and 34 have now been surveyed. Some of the larger culverts surveyed had dry passage and contained tracks of deer and bear, while others that looked good on paper turned out to have 10-foot drops to the river below, were mostly submerged, or contained other obstacles. Massachusetts' Department of Transportation and Division of Fish and Wildlife are using the surveys to inform future efforts to maintain or enhance wildlife passage across this busy highway. For more information, contact Laura Marx. 
Wildlife Camera White Paper Available in French

Thanks to funding from the Woodcock Foundation and Quebec's Fonds verts, the white paper "Wildlife Cameras in the Northern Appalachians, Uses and Lessons Learned" is now available in French. The paper is a summary from the 2016 Northeastern Transportation and Wildlife Conference summit on wildlife camera research across the region, best practices, and lessons learned. The summit was organized by SCI, and the summary report was prepared by Alissa Rafferty (The Nature Conservancy) with support from James Brady (Vermont Agency of Transportation), David Patrick (The Nature Conservancy), and Jens Hilke (Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department). Download the paper in French.
©Jens Hilke
Training Future Transportation and Connectivity Leaders in Vermont 

Known as "the summer camp that takes you places," the National Summer Transportation Institute (NSTI) is a free intensive summer program sponsored by the Vermont Agency of Transportation and Federal Highway Administration. NSTI seeks to aid in developing a diverse and robust workforce for the transportation industry by exposing students to transportation careers.
Jens Hilke (Vermont Department of Fish and Wildlife) and Chris Slesar (Vermont Agency of Transportation) spent two mornings with the campers talking about roads and wildlife. Through presentations, interactive exercises, Q&A, and design scenarios, Hilke and Slesar shared with campers (ranging in age from 12 - 17) the "why should we care?" and "what can we do about it?" overview of regional and local habitat connectivity. The Critter Crossing component of 2018 NSTI concluded with each student designing and building her or his own model wildlife crossing structure. Smiles, enthusiasm, and genuine interest were abundant at the 2018 NSTI Critter Crossing sessions, demonstrating that habitat connectivity is in the thoughtful and caring hands of the next generation of transportation engineers, biologists, and policy makers. Learn more about NSTI.
© Mike Dembeck
Updated Chignecto Corridor Analysis

The Nature Conservancy of Canada recently updated its Chignecto Isthmus wildlife corridor analysis. Due to funding priorities and provincial partner requests, previous analyses were completed independently for both New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, which resulted in mismatched results along the provincial borders. The newest analysis treats the Chignecto Isthmus as a contiguous landscape not separated by jurisdictional boundaries, allowing for a seamless wildlife corridor to be delineated across the study area. Additionally, the new least-cost path analysis captures habitat requirements for the entire suite of species selected by provincial government authorities in both New Brunswick and Nova Scotia. For more information on the Chignecto Isthmus wildlife corridor, please contact Patrick Nussey or Josh Noseworthy
SCI Webinars

Please join us for these upcoming webinars:
  • September 26, 10 AM Eastern Time: Using TNC's Resilient and Connected Lands Data for Connectivity Conservation. Click here to register. 

  • November 7, 10 AM Eastern Time: Land Use Planning for a Connected Landscape. Click here to register.
  • December 5, 10 AM Eastern Time: Assessing and Monitoring Highways for Wildlife Movement. Click here to register.
If you have suggestions for webinar topics, please contact Jessie Levine. 
Upcoming Events
The Staying Connected Initiative promotes wildlife habitat connections in an increasingly fragmented landscape. This unique cross-border public/private collaboration includes over 55 partners, spanning five northeastern U.S. states and three Canadian provinces, working to ensure that people and wildlife thrive together.