Saving the Kirtlands Warbler

Climate change is a pressing issue today, and it is up to each of us to do our utmost to combat it. At SFE Energy we are proud to be able to offer our customers ways that they can fight climate change and contribute to the global environmental effort. We purchase carbon offsets on behalf of our Eco Natural Gas and Green Electricity customers and through our partnership with American Forests, we plant a tree ever for every customer who enrolls in one of our green energy programs.

If there’s any doubt that green initiatives like these are having a positive impact on our environment, consider the Kirtlands Warbler. One of the rarest birds in North America, the Kirtlands Warbler population has recently been recovered. Until 2007, the Kirtland’s Warbler only had confirmed habitat in central and northern Michigan. The primary reason the bird is so rare, and also why it has earned the nickname “Bird of Fire”, is due to its reliance on the Jack Pine tree, specifically young Jack Pines aged between 6-22 years. The Jack Pine is a species which seeds are only released in the presence of heat and typically require forest fires to repopulate properly.

As forest fires were traditionally viewed as undesirable and preventable, the Kirtland Warblers’ habitat was inhibited from progressing through its natural regeneration cycle, consequentially reducing the Warblers numbers to its lowest point of only 167 males in 1987.

 Since 1987, through conservation efforts and SFE Energy’s contribution to the repopulation of 92,243 Jack Pine trees in Michigan, the Kirtland Warbler population has seen a tremendous recovery. Its numbers have now risen to over 2,365 males.  That’s more than double the original recovery goal of 1000 males. The species is now being considered for delisting as critically endangered and is expected to flourish into the future with continued efforts.

SFE Energy is committed to fighting for our climate, and to do our part in combating what we view as one of the most pressing issues of the 21st century. We excited to see what more we can accomplish through our partnership with American Forests and the environmental passion from our customers.

https://www.fws.gov/midwest/endangered/birds/Kirtland/timeline.html