The Conserve Wildlife Foundation has chosen our own Hannah B. Suthers as recipient of its first ever Women and Wildlife Inspiration Award. WCAS enthusiastically submitted the nomination, with support from the Sourland Planning Council.
Hannah is being recognized for her contributions to the understanding of bird populations and their foraging habits in changing habitats, and for fledging her own flock of new bird banders and rehabilitators. For more than two and a half decades, Hannah's research at her Featherbed Lane Avian Research Station in Hopewell Township has provided data on the changes in bird populations as the farm fields undergo a series of successional stages—the longest-running such study in the state of New Jersey. Much of her work has been published in scientific journals. She has been contributing to The Institute for Bird Populations' Monitoring Avian Productivity and Survivorship (MAPS) project since its inception in 1989. As a licensed avian rehabilitator, Hannah has nursed scores of injured and baby birds to health and released them to the wild. She has been a valued participant in WCAS biological surveys, the NJ Breeding Bird Atlas, the Christmas Bird Count, the Atlantic Flyway Project, bluebird nest monitoring in the Lawrence/Hopewell area and the NJ Herp Atlas Project. Her data are a critical part of the Sourlands Natural Resources Inventory. She founded The Princeton Skinners in 1982 and each winter leads the group in the taxidermic preparation of salvaged birds as study specimens for the Princeton University Biology Museum. And she is a member of the WCAS Board of Directors.
In their letter of support, the Sourland Planning Council states, "Hannah's work on behalf of birds and other wildlife has been a keystone in our efforts to foster the inclusion of habitat conservation in planning for the region and to promote sound stewardship among governments and landowners alike." The Featherbed Lane Research Station recently was approved as a New Jersey Important Bird Area representing the Sourland Mount Region, based on Hannah's data.
As part of National Women's History Month, Hannah was honored at a special reception on March 26th at Prallsville Mills in Stockton, along with Joanna Burger, Ph.D. of Rutgers University, who received the Women and Wildlife Leadership Award.
Conserve Wildlife Foundation is a private, not-for-profit organization that provides financial assistance, public education and community outreach in support of the NJ Endangered and Non-game Species Program.
Congratulations, Hannah. You are an inspiration to us all.
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