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Dec. 12, 2007

Contact: Mary Dettloff 517-335-3014

Retired Research Wildlife Biologist Named Partner in Conservation by

A retired research wildlife biologist from the Michigan State University Kellogg Biological Station near Hickory Corners has received a Partner in Conservation Award from the Department of Natural Resources and the Natural Resources Commission. The presentation took place at Friday*s NRC meeting in Lansing.

Joe Johnson retired in June after working 48 years with wildlife and students of wildlife management for MSU. Since the mid-1980s, Johnson has been the biologist-in-charge at the Kellogg Biological Station in Hickory Corners in southern Barry County. He has assisted the DNR with many research projects involving waterfowl management.

*It is a pleasure to recognize an individual who has helped the department with many wildlife research projects over the years, but has also taken the time to be an invaluable mentor to many students who are now successful in their careers as wildlife managers,* said DNR Director Rebecca Humphries. *I am pleased to recognize Joe Johnson for all he has done for conservation, and to help educate the current and future generations of wildlife management leaders.*

Johnson was instrumental in the successful return of the trumpeter swan in Michigan. He led at both the state and Mississippi Flyway level on the expansion of trumpeter swan population in Michigan and the Midwest. He was personally involved in the transfer of trumpeter swan eggs from Alaska to Michigan. The process of releasing the birds into the wild was also developed and fine-tuned by Johnson.

He has conducted waterfowl research throughout the years that has led to better management of population, and was very involved in the successful return of Canada geese to Michigan as a resident species. Johnson has assisted in wildlife habitat management and population monitoring during the years of resident goose establishment. He also has banded tens of thousands of Canada geese and ducks to help increase the understanding of these birds.

Johnson also has conducted training workshops for the frog and toad survey and helped recruit volunteers for the program. He also initiated a white-tailed deer hunt on the Kellogg Biological Station property to address an overabundant deer herd.

*Joe Johnson has been a leader in educating the public in wildlife ecology and management,* Humphries added. *He has a natural ability to communicate with people of all ages and backgrounds and has helped hundreds of people better understand wildlife and habitat.*

The Partner in Conservation Award is given out to organizations and individuals that assist the DNR in its mission. Honorees are nominated by DNR employees.

The DNR is committed to the conservation, protection, management, use and enjoyment of the state*s natural resources for current and future generations.


Editors Note: Photos of Joe Johnson receiving his Partner in Conservation Award are available online at http://www.michigandnr.com/ftp/OutReach/
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