Connect NC Bond – What’s In It for the Birds?

On March 15, the $2 Billion Connect NC Bond Initiative passed with 65% of the vote! We applaud North Carolina’s voters and lawmakers for supporting this Bond and helping to protect critical habitat for birds!

With its passage, the Connect NC Bond will provide funding to expand nine state parks and the Mountains-to-Sea State Trail – helping to protect habitat that will benefit many of the birds we care about including the Wood Thrush, Golden-winged Warbler and Red-cockaded Woodpecker.  

The Connect NC Bond includes $75 million for improvements to North Carolina’s state parks and zoos, including more than $14 million earmarked specifically for land acquisition. 

Several of the state parks that will receive funding for land acquisition fall within the boundaries of North Carolina’s Important Bird Areas (IBAs), including:

• Dismal Swamp State Park (Great Dismal Swamp IBA)

• Elk Knob State Park & Mount Jefferson State Natural Area (Amphibolites IBA)

• New River State Park (New River IBA)

• Weymouth Woods State Nature Preserve (Sandhills East IBA)

• Yellow Mountain State Natural Area (Roan IBA)

Protection and expansion of these state parks will make North Carolina’s birds more resilient to the threats of habitat fragmentation and offer refuge in the face of our changing climate.

Audubon North Carolina chapters and supporters played a huge role in encouraging people to get out and vote YES for the Connect NC Bond. Thanks to your help, we are making a big difference for birds in our communities and natural areas. 

To be notified when there are other issues where your voice can make a big difference in protecting birds, please be sure to register for our Advocacy Alert Network.  

Wood Thrush Photo: Kelly Colgan Azar/FlickrCC