The IBA Small Matching Grants Program awards funds to Audubon Chapters, landowners, universities, and members of IBA Stakeholder Groups for projects at identified Important Bird Areas that advance Audubon's priorities, including:
- Increasing awareness about Important Bird Areas
- Improving, restoring, and protecting habitat
- Gaining a greater understanding of the abundance and distribution of our species of greatest conservation need
- Implementing conservation strategies put forth in IBA Conservation Plans or other strategic plans
Audubon Connecticut is currently seeking proposals. A total of $10,000 in funding is available. Individual projects are eligible for up to $2,500 each and a minimum of 1:1 match of funds, goods or services is required. Deadline for submissions is November 11, 2016.
Stewart B. McKinney NWR - $500 request, $500 match to cover the cost of additional law enforcement at Menunkatesuck Island, which hosted the largest least tern colony in the state this year. As Menunkesuck is assessable at low tide, having law enforcement patrolling the island was vital in increasing awareness about the island’s importance to beach-nesting birds that keep it closed to the public during the breeding season.
Marvelwood School - $995 request, $5,179 match to 1) actively assess the populations of Cerulean Warblers in Kent, via enhanced banding and monitoring efforts, in order to better identify and ultimately manage key breeding areas and determine whether certain areas in Kent meet criteria to be designated as a Globally Important IBA, 2) raise public awareness in the local community, especially the children of Kent, about Cerulean Warblers and the incredible avian biodiversity in the region, as well as the responsibility we share to ensure their survival, and 3) raise awareness in the birding community about access to key birding locations on land trust properties.
Audubon Center at the Bent of the River - $500 request, $2,000 to 1) make repairs to the native plant nursery on the property, 2) stock the nursery with a variety of shrubs, and 3) eventually use these shrubs to restore the understory in areas of the forest, benefiting species such as Wood Thrush, Veery, and Ovenbird that require a dense understory for breeding.
Aton Forest, Inc. - $1,750 request, $1,750 match to 1) map American Woodcock habitat around the Aton Forest headquarter building, 2) removal of all larger tree saplings and shrubs in the area; and 3) create a PowerPoint presentation on the “Improvement of American Woodcock Habitat at Aton Forest” and give a public workshop on the topic. Aton Forest is within an Audubon Forest Focal Area and will be considered as in IBA in December.
Audubon Sharon - $2,000 request, $6,000 match to monitor avian populations at three banding stations within designated IBAs and perform a habitat assessment to outline specific silviculture recommendations for the area around one of the banding station at Audubon Sharon.
Kent Land Trust - $733 request, $900 match to improve access and birding opportunities at Skiff Mountain South Preserve by re-routing the preserve access trail and pushing back the brush lining the road slightly to create space for four cars to park. The land trust will also erect a kiosk in the Skiff Mountain parking area with information about the preserve and trail system and highlighting some of the birds of conservation concern on the property and the area’s status as Audubon Connecticut important bird habitat.
Audubon Connecticut at Stratford Point - $1000 request, $152,200 match to create a feed plot at Stratford Point that would greatly improve habitat for migratory seed-eating birds and enhance birding opportunities at the site. This project would be matched by a $148,000 project to create 2 acres of pollinator meadow at Stratford Point and $4,200 from the proceeds of the Shore to Pour foot race, which will be put towards the creation of a bird and butterfly garden proximal to the seed plots.
CT Butterfly Association and Friend of Lighthouse Point Park - $500 request, $4,840 match. This is an ongoing project that improves the habitat at Light House Point Park IBA for birds and butterflies. The bird and butterfly garden supports the public outreach component of this important IBA.
City of New Haven, Lighthouse Point Park - $500 request, $9,802 match. The requested funds would be used to purchase bird seed for the established Bird Feeding Stations at Lighthouse Point Park IBA, East Rock Park Trowbridge Environmental Center, and East Shore Park, an Urban Oases demonstration site and part of the New Haven Harbor Urban Refuge Partnership. Matching funds include support for the annual Migration Festival.
Pond Mountain Trust - $250 request, $253 match to work with Marvelwood students as part of their volunteer and community outreach program to build and install four Bluebird boxes along field edges near the Farmhouse (Stand 7) and install four Wood Duck boxes on the shore of Fuller Pond (Stand 6). Both were recommendations of Audubon CT’s Forest Bird Habitat Assessment for PMT.