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Conservation group visits Vt. on biodiversity ‘expedition’

Published: Oct. 6, 2021 at 5:32 PM EDT|Updated: Oct. 6, 2021 at 8:18 PM EDT
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BURLINGTON, Vt. (WCAX) - Lake sturgeon, tiger beetles, and floodplain forests are some highlights of a Vermont visit Wednesday by a national conservation organization.

The nonprofit NatureServe helps coordinate Natural Heritage Network programs in Vermont and across the continent by gathering data about imperiled species and showcasing how to “sustain biodiversity through technology, collaborative science, and local expertise.” The group visited Delta Park in Colchester Wednesday as the 17th stop in The NatureServe Network Van Tour.

NaturServe CEO Sean O’Brien says he’s in town to understand how Vermont is protecting its wildlife and what threats they face in doing so. “We’re trying to highlight what are the really interesting species and what are the endangered species all over the continent, and of course Vermont is a great example of success stories in protecting species. And we’re also going to learn today about some species that are in peril,” he said.

“It’s really to showcase some of our important rare species, rare plants, rare animals such as the lake sturgeon. In the lake there’s a teeny little insect called the tiger beetle that’s quite rare that’s on the beach,” said Everett Marshall with Vermont Fish and Wildlife, who was among biologists and wildlife managers gathering to discuss rare species and floodplain forests with O’Brien.

The experts will also be stopping in Smuggler’s Notch to showcase even more of Vermont’s wildlife to this national organization.

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