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Administration Home News/Information Contact Us DNR Home   

Joe Manchin III, Governor

Frank Jezioro, Director


News Release : September 14, 2005


Hoy Murphy , Public Information Officer (304) 558-3380

Contact: Rose Sullivan , Wildlife Resources Section (304) 637-0245


DNR Grant Money Available to Create

Outdoor Wildlife Learning Sites (OWLS)


  Applications are being accepted for grants to establish Outdoor Wildlife Learning Sites (OWLS) at West Virginia Schools, according to Curt is I. Taylor, Chief of the Wildlife Resources Section of the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources. OWLS is administered by the Wildlife Diversity Program of DNR.


  OWLS grants provide up to $2,000 for any school in West Virginia desiring to create or enhance wildlife habitat that will be used as an interdisciplinary teaching tool. The application deadline is November 1, 2005.


  “The OWLS program encourages students, teachers and community members to work together to plan an outdoor learning laboratory,” said Taylor . “Successful Outdoor Wildlife Learning Sites instill an environmental ethic and increase students' ecological literacy through exposure to native wildlife and plant communities.”

  Students and teachers can design and establish a wide range of wildlife habitat features, depending on the size of the school property and/or available space close to the school. The primary wildlife habitat components required for an outdoor environmental learning site include the food, water, cover and space habitat requirements of the wildlife species the site will be designed to support.

  “By understanding the habitat needs of wildlife, students can learn to be good stewards of the land,” according to Rose Sullivan , OWLS Program administrator. “It is important to involve students in all phases of an OWLS project from the initial assessment of the site, through the planning and decision making to the implementation of the project. Consequently, it is important to acquire an application booklet before the November 1 application deadline.”


  The OWLS application booklet provides a good introduction to developing a wide range of outdoor wildlife learning sites including ponds, butterfly gardens, native plantings to attract birds and many other topics. Completed grant proposals must be postmarked by November 1, 2005 . Contact Rose Sullivan (304) 637-0245, or WVDNR PO Box 67, Elkins WV 26241 or to receive a booklet if you have additional questions concerning the application process or the proposal acceptance criteria. The application also is available at the DNR Web site at


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