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Wildlife Professionals

Speaker discussing alternative livestock watering trough in Arkansas.
GATHER 'ROUND -- A farmer explains to wildlife professionals how he converted old tractor tires into watering troughs and fenced livestock from a pond which improved habitat and water quality. (Image courtesy Becky McPeake, UACES)

Training is offered periodically through the Arkansas Forest Resources Center for wildlife professionals to receive continuing education credit.  The Wildlife Habitat Restoration on Private Lands Conference occurs in even-numbered years in Arkansas and typically qualifies wildlife and other natural resource professionals for continuing education credit.  

Wildlife professionals wishing to receive continuing education credit can check with The Wildlife Society in advance of the event to determine number of credits.  The Wildlife Society will approve credit prior to the event. 

If you have an idea for a topic which needs to be addressed through professional training, contact Becky McPeake with the Cooperative Extension Service.

Wildlife Habitat Restoration on Private Lands Conference/Professional Training

The biennial Wildlife Habitat Restoration on Private Lands Conference/Professional Training is held in even-numbered years.  This event is intended to address the needs of professionals who work with private landowners in Arkansas and surrounding states to improve wildlife habitat.  This conference/training highlights partnership opportunities, new and innovative habitat restoration practices, and state/regional/national policies and initiatives which impact our work.  This event is expected to improve communications among and between agencies, organizations, and businesses involved in wildlife habitat restoration on private lands, resulting in new partnerships and efforts to put more wildlife habitat on the ground.  

Planning and implementation of Wildlife Habitat Restoration on Private Lands is by a group of Arkansas agencies and organizations devoted to improving wildlife habitat on private lands as listed below (in alphabetical order):

  • Arkansas Association of Conservation Districts
  • Arkansas Forest Resources Center
  • Arkansas Forestry Commission
  • Arkansas Game and Fish Commission
  • USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service - Arkansas
  • U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service - Arkansas
  • University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture, Cooperative Extension Service

For the latest information about an upcoming professional trainings, click here!

Prescribed Fire on the Landscape

May 2 - 5, 2016

May 2 - The first day focused on a pine-bluestem restoration project at the Ouachita National Forest near Waldron, Arkansas. This area has been managed for decades using fire, benefiting many species from bobwhites to red-cockaded woodpeckers.  The Pine-Bluestem Buffalo Road tour is a must-see for professionals, whether seeing it for the first time or revisiting this dynamic ecosystem. Experts provided insights about management practices and effects.

May 3 - The second day of the field tour focused on glade restoration near Calico Rock. Glades are a unique ecosystem providing habitat for a number of plant and wildlife species. Farm bill programs offer landowners incentives for restoring glades.  Members of the Oak Woodlands & Forest Fire Consortium, Theo Witsell with the Arkansas Natural Heritage Commission, and Casey Brewster, UA graduate student, described their work with glades and their restoration. 

May 4 - Conference continued at the UA Livestock and Forestry Research Station with additional field tours, presentations, and opportunities to network with professionals. 

Field Tour (morning): Participants took a wagon tour to woodland demonstration areas where UA forestry faculty and Consortium experts described the effect of fire and herbicide treatments on various forest stand densities and site indexes.

Indoor Presentations (afternoon):  Experts discussed the latest information on prescribed fire application and education.

Reception and Awards Dinner (evening):  An informal reception and awards dinner was held at the UA Livestock Forestry and Research Station.  Awards were presented recognizing professionals and landowners for habitat improvements in cooperation with partnering agencies.

May 5 - Conference continued with field demonstrations, presentations, and networking opportunities. 

"How To" Field Demonstrations (morning): Participants took a wagon tour to demonstrations of wildlife habitat restoration practices, including riparian area restoration, herbicide application to trees, and establishing native pollinator plants for improved wildlife habitat.

Indoor Presentations (afternoon):  Current events and issues facing landowners were presented. 

Applying Science to Restoring Habitat in a Changing Landscape

May 6 - 7, 2014
Harding University (Searcy, Arkansas)

♦ The morning session will include keynote speakers discussing integrating science into wildlife habitat restoration on private lands.

♦ The afternoon session will focus on restoring wetlands, bioenergy feedstocks and their impact on wildlife habitat, and invasives.

♦ A Landowner Recognition Award will be presented at an evening banquet.

♦ A bus tour of nearby private lands will feature forest health and buffers

2014 Arkansas Private Landowner Stewardship Awards:

No Resource Left Behind: A Holistic Approach to Land Stewardship

May 8 - 10, 2012
Faulkner County Natural Resource Center (Conway, Arkansas)
Boy Scout Camp field tour (Damascus, Arkansas)

2012 Featured Speakers:

♦ Mike Sullivan, Arkansas State Conservationist, USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service

♦ Tom Christensen, Regional Conservationist, USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service

♦ Bill White, Missouri Department of Conservation

♦ Dr. Craig Harper, University of Tennessee

2012 Arkansas Private Landowner Stewardship Awards:

♦ Reno and Beverly Romanin, Rover

♦ Julie Williamson and Polly Roten, Salesville

Wildlife biologist talking about prescribed burn to youth audience

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