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Restoring Coal-Mined Lands to Create Habitat for Imperiled Birds

AMJV and the Appalachian Regional Reforestation Initiative are partnering up to re-establish habitat on previously mined land to create greater breeding grounds for declining bird species in the Appalachian Region. Using ARRI’s Forestry Reclamation Approach, this collaboration is replanting trees on disturbed sites in heavily populated bird areas to restore the function and form of habitats that existed prior to mining.

Such restoration efforts will benefit many of the AMJV’s priority bird species that use mature forests, early successional habitat, shrublands, and other environments for breeding and foraging. For example, the imperiled Golden-winged Warbler relies heavily on young forests that can be created through efforts such as tree plantings. While a plummeting Cerulean Warbler population will benefit from greater amounts of mature, deciduous forests that this collaboration can re-establish over time on mined lands.

AMJV and partner agencies are identifying the best areas for ARRI to focus reforestation efforts to provide the greatest return on conservation investments. AMJV is also developing bird habitat objectives, providing expertise on habitat needs for priority species, and communicating results and success stories for these projects.

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