The DNR communications team works with agency experts to develop the weekly questions and provide the answers. This feature addresses current DNR issues, interesting topics, or the most frequently asked questions from around Minnesota.
Q: Now is the time of year when Minnesota residents can contribute to the DNR's Nongame Wildlife Checkoff Fund. What is this money used for and how does it help wildlife?
A: The DNR’s Nongame Wildlife Program uses donations to the fund for a number of statewide efforts to help protect and manage the state's nongame wildlife species. Nongame wildlife species includes more than 700 species of birds, mammals, reptiles, amphibians, fish, butterflies and selected invertebrates that are not traditionally hunted or harvested. This also includes conservation efforts for threatened and endangered species.
Specifically, the species that have benefited from these efforts are bald eagles, trumpeter swans, peregrine falcons, eastern bluebirds, Blanding's turtles, bats, timber rattlesnakes, great blue herons and other colonial water birds like egrets and grebes. The money also helps with land acquisition and easements to protect habitat, manage prairies, forests and wetlands, create buffer zones along lakeshores, assist private landowners and local governments with habitat management, and fund educational programs.
Contribute to the Nongame Wildlife Checkoff Fund on the 2014 Minnesota tax form, or online at www.dnr.state.mn.us/nongame/donate/index.html. The donations are matched with funds from conservation license plates. That means double the rewards for Minnesota’s wildlife.
- Lori Naumann, DNR Nongame Wildlife Program