Grand Valley Chapter of Pheasants Forever is dedicated to Kent and Ottawa Counties with over 750 members. Every year we hold a banquet that is our only source of revenue for our chapter projects, which include seed distribution for habitat, habitat seminars, youth events, and Lepold projects. If you would like more information, Please visit our web site at: http:GrandValleyPF.com.
Pheasants Forever is a non-profit conservation organization formed in 1982 in response to the continuing decline of upland wildlife. Nationwide, PF operates in 27 states (and in 3 Canadian provinces) with over 600 chapters and 115,000 members. Our objective is simple – to raise funds for habitat development, conservation education and other worthy conservation endeavors. To that end, 100% of all net proceeds raised by a chapter are retained by that chapter.
Michigan is the fourth largest PF state with 39 chapters and over 8,500 members. PF chapters in Michigan have successfully formed a variety of partnerships with landowners and government agencies to improve wildlife habitat, purchase planting equipment and seed, outdoor education, hunter safety and more.
Habitat restoration is the key to rebuilding Michigan’s pheasant population and Michigan PF chapters are dedicated to providing Ring-necks the habitat they need. In 2006, Michigan PF chapters expended $707,420 to enhance 20,067 acres of wildlife habitat. Since 1985, Michigan PF chapters have enhanced 356,129 acres of wildlife habitat. This includes 255,892 acres of food/cover plots, 83,536 acres of nesting cover, restored 5,151 acres of wetland and planted 849,811 trees. All this was accomplished through the unique mechanism of concerned local people providing the stimulus and incentive for neighbors to create habitat. In total, Michigan chapters have spent over $6.1 million on habitat and education projects.
Legislatively, PF has also been very active in Michigan. One of our proudest accomplishments is the passing of the Delayed Roadside Mowing Bill. This bill prohibits mowing of roadsides during the spring nesting season and will provide countless acres of nesting cover for pheasants, songbirds and other grassland wildlife. PF also played a major role in passing the 1996 and 2002 Farm Bills. The Farm Bill provides funding for conservation programs such as the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP), Wildlife Habitat Incentives Program (WHIP) and the Wetlands Reserve Program (WRP). PF also assisted in writing, designing and implementing Michigan’s Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (CREP). CREP will provide an estimated $177 million to establish 80,000 acres of filter strips, native grasslands and wetland restorations in Saginaw Bay, River Raisin and the Lake Macatawa Watersheds. After CREP had been stopped for a lack of state funding, PF secured a $4 million grant in 2005 to help reinstate this successful program and continue establishing CREP practices.
An outstanding group of dedicated volunteers, supportive membership, agency partnerships and a unique structure of allowing money to remain local has allowed PF to become the leader in habitat restoration in Michigan. Thank you for your continued support!
We’re more than just pheasants…
…Pheasants Forever (PF) is about conservation, education and habitat improvement which benefits all of Michigan’s wildlife. Although our name is Pheasants Forever, PF's habitat work extends beyond America's most beautiful and exciting upland game bird.
Have you seen more deer or turkeys lately? How about grassland songbirds like bluebirds, meadowlarks or bobolinks? If your answer is yes, then you already know the many benefits provided by Michigan chapters of Pheasants Forever. Habitat is the key to wildlife abundance, and Michigan's Pheasants Forever and Quail Forever chapters have and continue to work diligently at re-establishing quality uplands and wetlands.
Creating, restoring and enhancing the quality of open grassland habitat is the primary focus of Michigan PF chapters. Undisturbed blocks of nesting cover and winter roosting cover are Michigan’s most needed habitat components for pheasants. Once these habitat components are provided, PF’s focus turns to winter food. Planting food plots containing corn, sorghum and other grains helps pheasants withstand Michigan’s harsh winters and enter the nesting season in optimal condition. Healthy hens lay more eggs, which results in greater chick production.
But the benefits to wildlife don't stop there. Habitat projects completed by PF chapters also provide essential habitat for deer, turkeys, waterfowl and a diversity of grassland songbirds. For example, native grasses planted for pheasant nesting cover also provide excellent bedding cover for whitetails and brood rearing cover for wild turkeys. The grasses and clovers in PF’s cool-season nesting cover provide excellent nutrition for whitetails, rabbits and other animals, while PF’s grain food plots provide supplemental food for pheasants, deer, turkeys and a variety of other game and non-game animals.
Besides improving land through habitat development, Michigan’s Pheasants Forever chapters share the land ethic goal of the Leopold Education Project (LEP), PF's educational curriculum based on the classic writings of renowned conservationist Aldo Leopold. Many of our chapters provide scholarships for teachers to attend LEP Workshops, held annually in Michigan. Those teachers return to their classrooms and help foster in their students love, respect and admiration for the land. The LEP is helping create an ecologically literate citizenry with an intense consciousness of the earth. Many PF chapters also have active “Ringnecks” programs for our youth members. Ringnecks events introduce youth to hunting and conservation through hunter safety courses, youth mentor hunts and youth field days.
PF is also a leader in the legislative arena. Nationally, PF focuses on the Federal Farm Bill, which includes critical programs such as the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP), Wetlands Reserve Program (WRP) and the Wildlife Habitat Incentives Program (WHIP). CRP has enrolled over 36 million acres of environmentally sensitive cropland and created some of the most beneficial grassland habitat in the country. In Michigan, PF has helped pass important legislation such as the Roadside Mowing Bill (1998) and the Youth Hunting Bill and Mentor Hunting Bills (2006). The Roadside Mowing Bill protects hundreds of thousands of acres of roadside nesting cover during the primary nesting season. The youth bill lowered the age limit to hunt small game from 12 to 10 years old and the age limit to hunt big game from 14 to 12 years old. Research has shown that getting kids involved with hunting by the age of 12 is critical to keeping them involved as adults. As a result of this legislation, several thousand new hunters have experienced the great outdoors in the past two years, and many more will have the opportunity to do so in the future.
Pheasants Forever’s unique model of empowering local chapters to maintain 100% of the funds raised has made PF the leader in conservation in Michigan and across America. Whether you are interested in pheasants, deer, turkey or non-game wildlife, plant the habitat and watch the wildlife respond! Since 1985, Michigan PF chapters have invested over $6.1 million to restore or enhance over 356,000 acres of wildlife habitat. Questions? Contact Bill Vander Zouwen, Michigan Regional PF Rep, firstname.lastname@example.org or (616)450-2385.