The Heron Observation Network of Maine (HERON) is partnering with Burly Bird, a Maine-based conservation sticker company, to help raise funds for an important statewide aerial survey for nesting great blue herons.

Members of the public can support HERON in its efforts by purchasing the UV-coated vinyl sticker of a great blue heron that can be placed on car bumpers and windows, water bottles, coffee mugs, laptops, bikes and anywhere else.

HERON is a volunteer adopt-a-colony program started by the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife in 2009 in order to gain a better understanding of the great blue heron’s status within Maine.

Proceeds from the sticker will go towards funding the next aerial survey scheduled for 2015, which will help find new heron colonies that may have recently popped up.

The great blue heron was designated as a Species of Special Concern in Maine in 2007 due to a decline in breeding pairs along the coast. Little was known about the inland breeding population before 2009 when the Department ramped up its monitoring efforts by creating HERON.

Through HERON, volunteers across the state collect information on great blue heron colonies during the breeding season to help state biologists understand the species’ population trend and prioritize future conservation efforts.

The Burly Bird HERON sticker is now available just in time for the holidays. They can be purchased from the Burly Bird website (www.burlybird.com) or through the Department’s online store (www.mefishwildlife.com).  They sell for $4 each, with $3 going directly to fund the aerial survey.  Sticker sales will also help leverage federal funding through Maine’s State Wildlife Grant Program.

For more information about the Heron Observation Network of Maine, visit www.maineheron.wordpress.com, or contact Danielle D’Auria at danielle.dauria@maine.gov or (207) 941-4478.

Logo courtesy Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife

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