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Soaring Higher: Victory for A Friend

Today is a great day!

We are thrilled to report to you that the once endangered manatee is on a path to recovery and is no longer officially considered “endangered.” While our fight to save this gentle, yet still-threatened creature isn’t over, we’re happy to know that together, with your on going support, we have truly made a difference. Since 2001, we have flown more than 80 missions to save the manatees in Mesoamerica and in Florida’s Everglades — where we informed manatee science and illuminated threats to their habitat.

Here are a few of the other conservation victories your support has allowed us to accomplish:

  

  

Endangered Wolf Finds New Home

With your support, we relocated Maya, an endangered Mexican grey wolf from California to Missouri for breeding purposes. Wildlife flights are demanding yet crucial, especially when the survival of the species is at stake. While Maya didn’t take to her first mate, we are happy to report she will be paired with another male in hopes we can help this species thrive once again.

  

 

Creating "Ah Ha" Moments in Connecticut

We flew trustees from The Nature Conservancy to see the importance and scale of restoring healthy watersheds in the Connecticut River area. TNC’s Nathan Frohling said our flights are one of the best ways to engage people because  “… you could connect what you were seeing below with the technical, political, and scientific aspects of the work - creating ‘ah ha’ moments of understanding.” 

 

 

New Views of the Salt Lake Ecosystem

For the first time in 50 years, water flowed between the north and south arms of Great Salt Lake. Your support allowed us to fly our partners at Friends of Great Salt Lake above the flow event. The aerial view was “integral to our understanding of its ecosystem” and key to seeing how industrial operations affect the delicate balance of water levels and salinity,” said Friends’ Holly Simonsen. 

 

 

Threatened Wood Storks Discovered

We flew the Corkscrew Swamp Audubon staff to survey remote, hard-to-reach locations in the wetlands of Florida for nesting colonies of the threatened wood stork, a key indicator species of the ecosytem’s health. Audubon was able to monitor all sites and located a new sub-colony of nesting wood storks. The data gathered will also help Audubon conserve and restore the entire Everglades ecosystem.

 

   

Establishing and Protecting National Monuments

We celebrated as two areas that we flew in support of have gained additional federal protection. The Bears Ears area — a site sacred to native tribes and home to 1.35 million acres of stunning vistas, diverse ecosystems and culturally significant sites — and California’s Cotoni-Coast Diaries, home to critical watersheds and sensitive wildlife habitat, are now protected as National Monuments. With your support, we will fight to uphold those designations.

 

 

No Copper Mining for Now in the Methow

The two-year prohibition of mining in Washington’s stunning Methow Valley that our flights supported gives officials time to consider whether to prohibit mining there forever. This diverse and productive wildlife habitat is known for its recreational opportunities, and concerned residents fear damage from a proposed open pit copper mine. 

 

 

 

Your support has made these conservation victories possible. You empower everything we do, driving change and creating a better tomorrow. With your continued support, we will stand up for our wondrous planet and boldly create the healthy world we want future generations to live in.

Our tool, as always, will be small aircraft and our dedicated pilots. But you, our generous donors, will be the force and the spirit behind them.

Thank you so much for believing in us.

Bob Francella

Chief Advancement Officer
bfrancella@lighthawk.org
970-449-3949

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