"With the Conservancy's mapping and modeling work, this project will help us understand how and where we can make improvements that will benefit wildlife as part of our routine highway maintenance activities," said Gary McVoy, Director of Operations Division with NY State Department of Transportation.
Elsewhere in the Lake Champlain basin, the Conservancy and transportation partners are identifying barriers within aquatic ecosystems with funding from a second SWG grant and an agreement with the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service.
Some of the work will entail looking at constrictions caused by culverts along Lake Champlain tributaries like the Boquet, Saranac, and Upper Winooski Rivers, as well as smaller streams that provide habitat for salmon and species of conservation concern. Once identified, the partners will determine how best to alleviate blockages and promote fish passage.
Carr said the Nature Conservancy will seek to link key habitats, giving native species the room to migrate.
"People in the Valley will benefit, too, as ecosystems sustain important species tied to economic livelihoods and outdoor pursuits." he said.