Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center
for the diversity of grassland birds in Wisconsin is a complex task. It
is also an important task, because of the threats facing species of management
concern and their habitats. The plight of grassland birds may provide
the catalyst required to promote needed interest and action towards the
conservation of grassland ecosystems as a whole.
Wisconsin, with its varied landscapes and ecosystems, holds great management potential for a diversity of grassland habitats and the bird species and communities that inhabit them. Realizing that potential involves management efforts to conserve, restore, and expand valuable grassland habitat where appropriate on public lands and to work in priority landscapes that include private as well as public lands. Because most grassland bird habitat is on private agricultural lands, agricultural policy and changing agricultural practices will continue to play a large role in determining the quality, amount, and distribution of grassland bird habitat on the landscape.
Healthy and diverse grassland bird communities depend on the degree to which habitat on public and private lands accommodates them. In priority landscapes where human development is increasing rapidly, time is of the essence if critical habitat is to be successfully preserved. The cooperation of diverse groups of landowners and managers is vital to the conservation of grassland bird habitat in Wisconsin.