The Spruce Grouse is an endangered species in New York State. Based
on the recent research conducted on Spruce Grouse in New York State
by Angelena Ross at the State University of New York College of
Environmental Science and Forestry (SUNY ESF) and Dr. Glenn Johnson
from SUNY Potsdam immediate action to protect this species and
its habitat is needed.
The research of Ross and Johnson, along with over 25 years of
previous Spruce Grouse research conducted by Dr. Robert Chambers
and graduate students R.S. Fritz, P.B. Gradoni, and R.P.
Bouta at SUNY ESF clearly illustrates a continued decline in Spruce
Grouse numbers in New York It is time for the New York State
Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC) to make Spruce
Grouse a priority for increased management and conservation.
NYSOA urges the NYSDEC to allocate sufficient funds to finalize
and implement the recovery plan for Spruce Grouse in NYS, and to
provide funds for monitoring of recovery efforts. NYSOA further
urges that biologists from the Endangered Species Unit and at the
Regional level be assigned to work on the recovery efforts in cooperation
with leading Spruce Grouse researchers, landowners, and conservation
organizations such as The Nature Conservancy.
NYSOA recognizes that NYSDEC is not able to actively manage for
Spruce Grouse on state lands because of constitutional restrictions. However,
with the recent acquisitions of large conservation easements on
timber company lands by the State of New York, the opportunity
exists for active habitat management to support the survival of
the Spruce Grouse in New York State.
NYSOA urges NYSDEC to consider active habitat management techniques
on timber company lands with conservation easements to help ensure
that Spruce Grouse persists in New York State.
The Nature Conservancy (TNC) owns much Spruce Grouse habitat on lands
it owns north of Tupper Lake and has recently acquired other potential
Spruce Grouse habitat. TNC has not pursued active management strategies
regarding Spruce Grouse on its lands to date. NYSOA urges that active
management techniques be considered to ensure that the Spruce Grouse
persist on TNC owned lands.