Michigan's Wildlife Action Plan, now in the process of being revised, is a framework for collaborative conservation. The plan focuses on habitat management and other key issues affecting wildlife, especially wildlife populations that are in decline. Uncommon wildlife can be critical indicators of the health of Michigan's natural resources. Some of these species are cherished Michigan icons, such as the Kirtland's warbler – the rarest migratory songbird in North America -- the loon with its haunting call and the ancient lake sturgeon. Such wildlife and their habitats are integral to healthy ecosystems. They enhance outdoor recreation, provide clean air and water, promote storm-water storage, and elevate the beauty of Michigan's woods and waters. Thoughtful conservation of these species supports Michigan's multi-billion-dollar natural resources economy – including hunting, fishing, camping, trail use and other outdoors pursuits.
The first version of Michigan's Wildlife Action Plan was completed in 2005. The Department of Natural Resources and partner organizations across the state are currently working on revising that plan. The revised plan will focus on priority habitats, and use rare and common wildlife as measures of progress towards achieving the plan's goals. The draft priorities link with existing programs and plans such as the Michigan Waterfowl Legacy, the Lake Sturgeon Rehabilitation Strategy, the Kirtland's Warbler Recovery Plan and the Pheasant Restoration Initiative.
The Wildlife Action Plan continues to bring public and private organizations together to work towards shared goals. Partners can voluntarily choose to implement conservation actions identified in the plan that will also help meet their own goals and needs. Collaborating on conservation will benefit rare and game wildlife, and strengthens Michigan's natural resources for current and future generations.