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DNR News

** Archived Article - please check for current information. **

February 28, 2012

Eighth Eastern Native Grass Symposium set Oct. 1-4, 2012 in Charlottesville, Va.

The Eighth Eastern Native Grass Symposium will be held Oct. 1-4 in Charlottesville, Va. This year the symposium will place special emphasis on the role that native grasses can play in mitigating the effects of climate change.

Sessions at the Eastern Native Grass Symposium will feature topics related to biofuels, ecosystem restoration, forages, seed production/landscaping, land reclamation (mines, landfills) wildlife management and other relevant issues for native grasses in the eastern United States and Canada. The program will include several field trips to selected sites in Virginia and hands on workshops.

Virginia Tech will be hosting the Eastern Native Grass Symposium, a national meeting with an expected attendance of about 250 professionals and scientists from across the Eastern half of the nation. The meeting will take place at the DoubleTree by Hilton Charlottesville.

Field trips will include: Shenandoah National Park and Big Meadows; Fort Pickett in Blackstone, Va.; Manassas National Battlefield Park; and a local tour of the Charlottesville area and Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello.

A 2005 publication by the S.C. Department of Natural Resources (DNR) reported birds that use grasslands have shown some of the steepest population declines of any bird group in North America, and native grasslands are encouraged and restored where appropriate on DNR Heritage Preserves around the state.

“The decline of bobwhite quail and many other species of wildlife are linked to the decline of native grasslands in the East,” said Billy Dukes, DNR Small Game Project supervisor. “Fortunately, many USDA conservation programs have restoration of rare or declining habitats as a goal. Private landowners interested in receiving assistance with restoration of native grasslands on their property should contact the local USDA service center.”

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