State Wildlife Action Plan Updates Underway

Friday, August 1, 2014

The Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency (TWRA), in cooperation with The Nature Conservancy, is updating the Tennessee State Wildlife Action Plan. The nationwide development of State Wildlife Action Plans (SWAPs) in 2005 was a major milestone in fish and wildlife conservation.

The SWAPs are blueprints for conservation, assessing the health of each states’ wildlife habitat and species, identifying those of greatest conservation need, key threats and conservation actions needed to conserve wildlife and habitat before they become too rare or costly to restore. They are guideposts for conservation action and convey a vision about how resource managers plan to leave our country’s land, waters, fish and wildlife for future generations of Tennesseans. Taken as a whole, they present a national action agenda for preventing wildlife from becoming endangered. Congress mandated that state fish and wildlife agencies develop the plans to receive federal funding through the Stateand Tribal Wildlife Grants Program and that plans must be revised every 10 years.

In Tennessee, SWAP revision efforts began in Fall 2013 with the convening of a group of core planning team members and more than 30 species experts from across the state. Tennessee’s State Wildlife Action Plan looks at where species occur, as well as information about their rarity, mobility, and habitat preferences to evaluate habitats across the state. The TN SWAP is a plan that emphasizes habitat-based conservation, is aligned with the overall TWRA strategic plan, and dovetails with many other statewide conservation efforts. The TWRA is using the wildlife action plan update as an opportunity to complete the most comprehensive analysis of the state’s wildlife conservation needs to date. The first phase of the revision process has been focused on refining the technical elements of the plan and is now progressing toward an evaluation of TWRA’s strategic priorities.

This summer the SWAP update process continues. The planning team is reviewing new maps showing the habitat boundaries of Species of Greatest Conservation Need (SGCN). This is an integral step to identifying both state and region-wide conservation strategies and objectives to address key problems that are adversely affecting wildlife and habitats. Wildlife agencies across the country are developing management strategies to address climate change adaptation in these Plans.                                                 

To learn more about Tennessee’s conservation goals and the measures necessary to recover endangered species, restore unique habitats, keep rare and imperiled species off the endangered species list, and to keep common species common, visit the Tennessee State Wildlife Action Plan page at www.tn.gov/twra/cwcs/cwcsindex.html. For questions about the TN SWAP update process or to make comments contact Bill Reeves, Chief of Biodiversity, 615 781-6645 or bill.reeves@tn.gov.




Fort Loudoun State Park Veterans Hunt Is Successful

The first Fort Loudoun State Park, Disabled Veterans Hunt took place on Monday. Six veterans from the Disabled American Veterans, a nonprofit charity that provides support for veterans and their families, joined staff and volunteers before sunrise for breakfast and a quick briefing before heading to their hunting blinds.       Joe Pike, Monroe County ... (click for more)

Ringgold's Trail Of Tears Phase II Out For Bid; Improvements To Be Made On Trailhead

The City of Ringgold’s Trail of Tears will be seeing improvements soon. Currently, the city has the Phase II out to bid. This project will be improving the trail head at the Ringgold Water Treatment Plant located on South Depot Street. The project will also create a concrete hard surface from the exiting hard surface to the wooden pedestrian bridge. Additional parking will also ... (click for more)

City Council Votes On 1st Reading To Lower Rain Retention Requirement In South Chickamauga Creek Basin

The City Council on Tuesday voted to lower the requirement for rainwater retention in the South Chickamauga Creek basin. The move from holding the first 1.6 inches to one inch had been requested by the Home Builders Association and the Berke administration. Sandy Kurtz, longtime leader of the South Chickamauga Creek Greenway Alliance, said the resolution was "not yet ready ... (click for more)

Former Pilot Regional Account Specialist Says Former President Mark Hazelwood Approved Of Fraud

When well-known attorney Rusty Hardin on Tuesday asked a former Pilot regional account specialist if she believed that former president Mark Hazelwood knew of a plan to cheat trucking firms he didn't get the answer he expected. Holly Radford told a jury in Chattanooga, "I know he had knowledge of the rebate schemes that were going on. "I had conversations with him about it ... (click for more)

Thankful For Tennessee

While Christmas reigns supreme as a holiday marking the birth of our Lord, I have always felt a special connection with Thanksgiving. These days Christmas unfortunately includes ubiquitous commercialism which can distract us from the true meaning of the day. Thanksgiving stands apart from all that. This day gives us an opportunity to reflect and take stock of our many blessings.  ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Thanksgiving Eve

I don’t know who was the first to do the Famous Pregnant Turkey prank but I’ll bet you a handful of giblets there will be a lot of copycats who try it today. The trick is finding a Cornish hen that is small enough to stuff inside the larger turkey. Then you skillfully pack the bird with some of that sausage-sage dressing and put your Thanksgiving dinner in the oven. When all ... (click for more)