Monday, October 31, 2011

Alabama QF Chapter to Start Habitat Improvement Projects

Alexander City, Ala. - October 28, 2011 - The Covey Rise Chapter of Quail Forever is providing assistance with the initiation of a wildlife habitat improvement project at Alabama's Wind Creek State Park aimed at improving brood-rearing conditions for bobwhite quail. The habitat work at the park is part of a cooperative effort among Quail Forever, the National Wild Turkey Federation, and the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources.

This wildlife habitat improvement project will focus on thinning a wooded section of the park to revitalize the longleaf pine ecosystem that provides essential brood-rearing habitat for quail and wild turkeys. Thinning trees to provide a much wider space between them is necessary to allow abundant sunlight to the ground to stimulate the native grasses and forbs that quail chicks need as protective "bugging sites" in the first days of their lives.

"This cooperative project will serve as a model that can be used at other state parks and state-owned land," said Steve Forehand, Habitat Chairman of the Covey Rise chapter. Forehand continued, "This area will also serve as a demonstration site to show landowners how to effectively manage their properties for quail habitat. The bobwhite quail is a bell-weather species. If your land will support a bobwhite quail, it will support just about any species of wildlife."

This type of habitat work must be done during the fall when ground conditions are dry, and involves relying on a modern mechanized timber harvesting operation. Trees will be cut down, de-limbed and topped, and cut into logs during the felling and processing phase of the harvest operation. The logs then will be delivered to wood utilization businesses in the region. Local residents will benefit from the harvest and processing of wood into everyday products.

Pheasants Forever launched Quail Forever in August of 2005 to address the continuing loss of habitat suitable for quail and the subsequent quail population decline. Bobwhite population losses over the last 25 years range from 60 to 90 percent across the country. For more information regarding the habitat improvements taking place, please contact Steve Forehand with the Covey Rise Chapter of Quail Forever by email. For all other inquiries, please contact Rehan Nana, Public Relations Specialist for Pheasants Forever and Quail Forever at (651) 209-4973 or Email Rehan.

Pheasants Forever, including its quail conservation division, Quail Forever, is the nation's largest nonprofit organization dedicated to upland habitat conservation. Pheasants Forever and Quail Forever have more than 130,000 members and 700 local chapters across the United States and Canada. Chapters are empowered to determine how 100 percent of their locally raised conservation funds are spent - the only national conservation organization that operates through this truly grassroots structure.

Quail Forever is dedicated to the conservation of quail, pheasants and other wildlife through habitat improvements, public awareness, education and land management policies and programs.