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    Ken Martin
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    First off, hello everyone. I hope all are safe and healthy and haven’t gone stir crazy yet.

    While this isn’t health care related it is policy related. Waterfowl policy. I may have told some but I was involved in conservation advocacy long before taking on hemophilia related topics.

    Just before the shut down I attended the Michigan Department of Natural Resources Citizen’s Waterfowl Advisory Committee meeting. This committee is made up of twenty members. Some members are “at large” residents of Michigan and others, like myself, represent a stakeholder organization (Harsens Island Waterfowl Hunters Association).

    During the bi-yearly meeting we discuss trends in waterfowl population, migration, brood success, predation, habitat, invasive species and hunter involvement/impact. All of the scientific data including anecdotal observations are compiled and discussed at length to provide recommendations to the Michigan Natural Resource Commission who set the hunting season dates, bag limits on the approximately twenty-some species of waterfowl that nest, migrate and winter in Michigan and the Great Lakes.

    Over the past two months I have been working with the MI DNR to create solutions in response to Covid-19 and how state run waterfowl managed areas, which attracts hundreds of hunters, bird watchers, hikers, etc, will be ran to provide a safe experience for citizens and state employees. Needless to say it has been frustrating, exhausting and sometimes rewarding to have the fall season upon us and a solution in place.

    The experience I have gained over the past 25 years working in conservation has directly helped me in the health care and hemophilia advocacy realm. Just this past Thursday I was on the phone with my State Senator Dan Lauwers discussing the issues at our state’s managed area and after he heard what I had to say he asked, “What can I do here in Lansing to help you?” -THE ASK- Which I had ready to tell him specifically and on Tuesday he called back to tell me an email with what I had asked for is forthcoming. An hour later I had the information I needed.

    Stay safe everyone and go outside and enjoy nature. This is the best time of year to do it in my opinion and you can’t get Covid from a tree.

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