This Sunday, we will be kicking off the 2016-2017 season of MUCC’S Wildlife Habitat Improvement Program with a project at the Sharonville State Game Area. The Jackson College Jets Baseball Team will be volunteering to build brush piles for rabbitat as well as construct a natural hunting blind that is tracker chair accessible. This project is in coordination with the Michigan Operation Freedom Outdoors (MiOFO) collaborative partnership with Michigan’s Department of Natural Resources. The completion of this project will enhance opportunities for hunting from an accessible blind as well as small game hunting opportunity by providing several large brush piles in the area.
The MiOFO mission is to provide outstanding outdoor recreation opportunities to wounded veterans and individuals with health challenges; and, to coordinate a support network that facilitates their recovery through connecting with nature. MiOFO activities are centered around the DNR-managed Sharonville State Game Area. The property is near several population centers including Ann Arbor, Jackson, Lansing, and Detroit makes it a great location for hunters to utilize. I look forward to working alongside the Jackson College Jets and MUCC volunteers to provide another accessible blind in the area! See the event details here.
More wildlife habitat improvement project opportunities for volunteers are being scheduled starting in early December 2016 through September 2017. In December, we will be returning to the Allegan State Game Area to continue efforts of aspen regeneration by cutting over-mature aspen trees to promote new regrowth. Coming up in January, MUCC plans to host another chainsaw safety training course, open to the public, covering topics on basic chainsaw techniques, safety systems, proper PPE, and techniques used at habitat improvement projects. Also in January, we will be continuing to improve habitat for snowshoe hare by hinge-cutting in the Grayling State Forest. In February, for the fourth year in a row, we will be partnering with the Dow High Conservation Club to maintain a wildlife opening in the Gratiot-Saginaw State Game Area.
Spring 2017 events will include a rabbitat project in early March at the Fulton State Game Area, a tree planting project in late March to provide browse for deer and other wildlife in the Barry State Game Area, and other potential tree planting projects in the Tuscola State Game Area and Crane Pond State Game Area. Keep up to with upcoming project details, dates, and locations at www.mucc.org/ontheground. Other project areas for the 2016-2017 season will include the Pigeon River Country State Forest, Rose Lake State Game Area, Muskegon State Game Area, Haymarsh Lakes State Game Area, St. Clair Flats State Wildlife Area, Traverse City State Forest, and others. Please feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions or considerations regarding any of the wildlife habitat improvement projects!