Black Bear Conservation Committee Offers Landowner Workshop
The Black Bear Conservation Committee (BBCC) will hold a free landowner assistance workshop for people in and around Avoyelles Parish on March 25. This workshop is for landowners interested in financial assistance for converting marginally productive agricultural lands into bottomland hardwood forest. The workshop will consist of a presentation summarizing the various assistance programs (WRP, WHIP, etc) followed by a question and answer period. Black bear ecology and avoidance of nuisance bear behavior will also be discussed. Representatives from Louisiana State University Cooperative Extension Service, Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry, Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, Natural Resources Conservation Service, and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will be present to answer specific questions regarding programs.
The BBCC is interested in establishing and maintaining forested habitat corridors for the Louisiana black bear within parishes and counties near the Mississippi River. Linking the remaining forested habitat would fulfill one of the requirements for the removal of the Louisiana black bear from the Endangered Species list because it would encourage movement between isolated subpopulations of bears. "Avoyelles Parish is in a critical location between 2 of only 3 subpopulations of the Louisiana black bear," Paul Davidson, Executive Director of the BBCC, said. "So landowners in this parish are key to the success of bear restoration."
The workshop will begin at 6 p.m. at the Mansura Fire Department, located at 1808 Leglise Street (Highway 107) between Saint Paul and High School Streets in Mansura. Sandwiches and drinks will be provided.