Secretary Salazar & Director Ashe Visit Detroit River IWR
Secretary Salazar & Director Ashe Visit Michigan- Celebrate Conservation Efforts Underway...See more
Secretary Salazar & Director Ashe Visit Michigan-
Celebrate Conservation Efforts Underway
TRENTON, MI—Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar, Congressman John Dingell and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Director Dan Ashe were in Michigan July 6, 2011 to announce land acquisitions of the Blanchett and Holloway tracts intended to enhance the first international Wildlife Refuge in North America, the Detroit River International Wildlife Refuge.
Secretary Salazar, Congressman Dingell and Director Ashe highlighted public-private partnerships as the driving force behind the announcement and a critical component in achieving the conservation goals set forth in President Obama’s America’s Great Outdoors Initiative.
“The Detroit River International Wildlife Refuge serves as a gateway to the outdoors for the more than 5 million people in the Detroit metro area,” Salazar said. “With each tract of land being restored to natural habitat, this refuge will provide additional opportunities for youth to discover the natural world around them and help create a new generation of conservationists.”
“I’m pleased that Secretary Salazar and Director Ashe joined me today to recognize the importance of land conservation. These acquisitions of the Detroit River International Wildlife Refuge reflect a new paradigm for conservation to better protect wildlife and enhance community appreciation for our beautiful land. This is a new way we are going to save land and preserve our great outdoors,” said Dingell.
The Midwest Region was the first to welcome Director Ashe to the field since his confirmation as the Service's 16th Director on June 30, 2011. Ashe applauded the efforts of Detroit River International Wildlife Refuge staff and the special partnerships they have fostered with refuge Friends group, International Wildlife Refuge Alliance, in their shared mission of protecting valuable habitats and providing wildlife-oriented public use and recreational opportunities at the urban refuge.
“I am heartened by the work being done here at Detroit River because joint partnerships like this, that cross international borders exemplify the rich tradition of what the Service does – providing vital connections with the natural world,” said Ashe.
Located along the lower Detroit River and western shoreline of Lake Erie, the Detroit International Wildlife Refuge includes 5,732 acres of islands, coastal wetlands, marshes, shoals, and waterfront lands.
The 28-acre Blanchett tract was acquired with the help of Ducks Unlimited with North American Wetlands Conservation Act and U.S. Department of Transportation funding, and the 47-acre Holloway tract was acquired with U.S. Department of Transportation funding, in fiscal year 2011. These land acquisitions put the Detroit River International Wildlife Refuge front and center as the National Wildlife Refuge System steps up to meet President Obama’s America’s Great Outdoors Initiative—giving the American public more opportunities to connect with the natural world.