Upcoming Trainings

Community Wildlife Program
2020 Virtual Workshops

Join Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department Conservation Planners for a series of online workshops to learn about conservation science and ways you can use the Department’s latest tools to protect Vermont’s fish, wildlife, plants, and their habitats.

The 2020 Virtual Workshops will introduce the BioFinder mapping tool and the underlying science of Vermont Conservation Design, a statewide effort to identify the most ecologically important lands and waters of Vermont. Participants will explore maps and data, learn about useful applications and case studies, and leave with a better understanding of how their land fits into regional efforts to protect Vermont’s species from a changing climate, forest fragmentation, and habitat loss. Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department's Community Wildlife Program is pleased to offer three workshop topics intended for interested Vermonters, land-use planners, natural resources professionals, and ecological consultants. 

Workshops will be hosted via the online video-conferencing software Microsoft Teams. Each workshop will also provide a telephone call-in number. Participants should register for each workshop by contacting Andrew.Wood@Vermont.gov

 


Intro to Biofinder 3.0: The Go-To Resource for Exploring Vermont’s Biodiversity  
Have you ever wondered how your backyard or woodlot fits into the bigger picture? Are you interested in learning about your town’s wildlife habitat and its most important ecological areas? Join Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department's Conservation Planners to learn about BioFinder, a free online portal, mapping tool, and go-to resource for exploring Vermont’s biodiversity. You'll learn what's new with the recently released version of BioFinder 3.0.

Session 1: Monday, April 27, 2020; 10:30-11:30AM

Session 2: Wednesday, May 6, 2020; 1:00-2:00PM

Note: This workshop will be offered on two dates; participants need not attend multiple sessions, as the content will be the same. 

 


Using BioFinder 3.0 for Land-Use Planning

Join Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department's Conservation Planners to learn about BioFinder 3.0, a free online portal showing the state’s most important ecological areas and biodiversity data. We’ll explore how BioFinder can help planners access important ecological data, identify significant forest blocks and habitat connectors, and comply with Act 171. This workshop is intended for members of conservation commissions, planning commissions, development review boards, as well as professional planners and interested citizens. Join us as we work towards planning a vibrant, ecologically healthy future in Vermont. 

Session 1: Tuesday, April 21, 2020; 7:00-8:00PM

Session 2: Thursday, April 30, 2020; 10:00-11:00AM 

Session 3: Monday, May 11, 2020; 1:00-2:00PM

Session 4: Friday, May 29, 2020; 10:00-11:00AM

Note: This workshop will be offered on four dates; participants need not attend multiple sessions, as the content will be the same. 

 


Vermont Conservation Design for Ecological Consultants
Join in to hear a panel of Agency scientists and regulators discussing Vermont Conservation Design (VCD), a statewide prioritization of the most ecologically important lands and waters in Vermont. VCD offers a practical vision for maintaining ecological function in Vermont, capturing both current biological diversity as well as those resilient landscapes most important for maintaining biological diversity into the future. We'll show you how to access VCD data through the BioFinder mapping portal, a useful tool for remotely reviewing project sites and understanding the ecological context in which they occur. We’ll also discuss how VCD data and maps can bring value to your projects and clients and how the Agency of Natural Resources is using VCD in its regulatory review.

Session 1: Tuesday, May 5, 2020; 11:30AM-1:00PM

Session 2: Tuesday, May 19, 2020; 1:00-2:30PM

Note: This workshop will be offered on two dates; participants need not attend multiple sessions, as the content will be the same. 

 

About Our Presenters

Andy Wood is a Conservation Planning Specialist at VT Fish & Wildlife Department. As staff for the Community Wildlife Program, he provides technical assistance to Vermont municipalities, and works on a variety of conservation science and outreach programs. Andy brings a broad suite of skills to the Department, having worked on land-use planning, road ecology, wildlife management, and environmental assessment projects across New England. He did his undergraduate work at Bates College, and has a Masters in Botany from the University of Vermont as a Field Naturalist. Andy is a member of The Wildlife Society, the Society for Conservation Biology, and the American Ornithological Society.
Contact Andy at Andrew.Wood@Vermont.gov
 

Jens Hilke is a Conservation Planning Biologist at VT Fish & Wildlife Department. He leads the Community Wildlife Program, which provides technical assistance to VT municipalities on land use planning.  He helps towns, regional planning commissions and non-governmental organizations with their conservation planning efforts. This includes help with GIS natural resource mapping, advice on prioritizing significant natural features and help with implementing town conservation goals. Jens did his undergraduate work at Connecticut College in Environmental Sociology and then got a Masters in Botany from the University of Vermont as a Field Naturalist. Jens has taught high school science in Vermont, New Hampshire, and New Jersey and for a study-away program in Thailand, Southeast Asia. 
Contact Jens at Jens.Hilke@Vermont.gov
 

About Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department's
Community Wildlife Program

The Community Wildlife Program provides volunteer and professional municipal planners and non-governmental organizations with the most up-to-date information on conservation science and resources for implementing their conservation projects. The program helps towns take their community’s conservation goals, use them to identify important wildlife habitat, and translate these goals into language that can use be used in their town plans.