The Kirtland's Warbler is a conservation-reliant and emblematic species of Michigan that has battled back from low population numbers to become an endangered species success story. The key to that success has been intensive, human-led management strategies to reduce predation threats from the non-native Brown-headed cowbird and provide specific habitat needs once naturally provided by wildfire. Having surpassed recovery goals the Kirtland's warbler now stands at a crossroads - how to move beyond recovery to a place of strong, sustained existence. What are the key ingredients to ensure this unique species thrives into the future? As agencies begin to reassess the warbler's endangered species status, what will the next chapter of the human-Kirtland's warbler relationship look like? Join Abigail Ertel of Huron Pines and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's Christie Deloria to learn more about how the new Kirtland's Warbler Initiative is working to answer these questions and the implications this work has for other conservation-reliant species.
Abigail Ertel - Abigail Ertel is the Kirtland's Warbler Coordinator for Huron Pines, a non-profit conservation organization committed to conserving the forest, lakes, and streams of Northeast Michigan. With a background in working with multiple partners and implementing high-priority on-the-ground restoration projects gained while coordinating large-scale watershed restoration projects she is excited to be leading the Kirtland's Warbler Initiative. She has demonstrated the ability to expand initial project ideas to address multiple resource concerns over a regional scale and leverage partner contributions to invest over $1 million in Northeast Michigan. The Kirtland's Warbler Initiative brings together Abigail's passion for motivating support for conservation at the local level and her ability to develop strong strategic partnerships to accomplish natural resource protection goals.
Christie Deloria - Christie Deloria is a biologist with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in Marquette, Michigan. Currently, she is the Acting Coordinator of the Great Lakes Coastal Program and is also helping lead efforts to secure the future of the Kirtland's warbler. She has spent nearly all of her 17 year career working in some capacity to recover this endangered species and is excited about helping write a new chapter in Kirtland's warbler conservation. Christie has BS and MS degrees in Fish and Wildlife Management from Lake Superior State University and Michigan State University, respectively.
Lisa Brush - Executive Director, The Stewardship Network. Lisa has worked in the environmental field in Michigan for the last fifteen years. She is currently the Executive Director of the Stewardship Network and has been involved with the Network since its inception more than 10 years ago. She has a wealth of experience helping non-scientific people understand scientific issues. For over nine years, as she has built and coordinated The Stewardship Network, she has emphasized effective and meaningful stakeholder involvement in developing and implementing all aspects of this program. She has a M.S. in Natural Resources from the University of Michigan and a B.A. (Science in Society) from Wesleyan University.