Kentucky Fish and Wildlife receives national recognition for quail restoration work

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Kentucky Fish and Wildlife receives national recognition for quail restoration work

3/25/09


Frankfort, Kentucky - Quail Unlimited has awarded its prestigious Northern Bobwhite Conservation Initiative Award to the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources for its efforts to restore quail habitat.

"We are humbled and honored by the recognition that this award brings to our Commonwealth," said Kentucky Fish and Wildlife Commissioner Jon Gassett. "It reinforces and strengthens our mission to restore the northern bobwhite to the numbers enjoyed by our parents and grandparents."

Quail Unlimited cited numerous reasons for the award. Since the launch of the department's private lands program two decades ago, biologists have helped more than 11,000 landowners and managers improve their property for wildlife. During that time, Kentucky Fish and Wildlife has restored more than 163,500 acres of quail habitat in the state through federal farm bill programs alone.

While those efforts helped wildlife in localized areas, the department has launched a new program to concentrate efforts on large blocks of acreage in eight regions across the state.

John Morgan, small game program coordinator for Kentucky Fish and Wildlife, said efforts are now underway to build community support for quail restoration through habitat work in the focus regions. By concentrating on regions rather than scattered farms, quail can thrive and spread throughout the state instead of just being isolated in one area.

It's a concept that has generated national recognition for Kentucky Fish and Wildlife. "This award is a big honor for the department," Morgan said. "It's the most elite award associated with quail restoration."

Quail Unlimited also cited the department's outreach efforts, including awards to landowners, partnerships with other organizations, and the campaign to raise awareness of quail issues through a specialty quail license plate and signs on the tailgates of department trucks.

"This award is the culmination of more than two decades of work - and we've only just begun," said Wildlife Division Director Karen Alexy. "Our ultimate goal is to restore essential habitat and an adequate population of quail to hunt across the state of Kentucky."

(Editors: An award presentation photo is available by e-mailing Dave Baker at [email protected])

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The Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources manages, regulates, enforces and promotes responsible use of all fish and wildlife species, their habitats, public wildlife areas and waterways for the benefit of those resources and for public enjoyment. Kentucky Fish and Wildlife, an agency of the Tourism, Arts and Heritage Cabinet, has an economic impact to the state of $4.5 billion annually. For more information on the department, visit our web site at fw.ky.gov.


Media Contact:
Dave Baker (800) 858-1549 ext. 4454
 


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