WASHINGTON, D.C. (WBOY) – Two grants will be invested in various environmental projects in West Virginia, according to a release from the office of Senator Shelley Moore Capito.

The grants come from the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) and will total $932,193, the release said.

“West Virginia’s natural habitats allows wildlife of all kinds to flourish, and it is part of what makes our state such a wonderful place to both live and visit.” Senator Capito said. “The grants announced today further support our efforts to strengthen both the waters and forests across our state, and will help restore and protect critical habitats for years to come.”

“West Virginia is blessed with beautiful public lands and incredible wildlife. Like many of my fellow West Virginians, I enjoy hunting, fishing and exploring our great outdoors, and I’ve instilled that love and appreciation in my children and grandchildren,” Senator Joe Manchin said. “I am pleased the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation is investing in protecting and preserving the trout population in the Greenbrier River, as well as restoring red spruce forest habitats at New River Gorge National Park and Preserve and Monongahela National Forest.”

The awards will be distributed to:

  • $488,308 – Trout Unlimited, Inc.
    • Funds will be used to improve eastern brook trout and eastern hellbender populations by removing two barriers to fish passage, reconnecting 28 miles of aquatic habitat, and enabling seven private landowners to protect and restore aquatic habitat by implementing conservation practices on 500 acres, all across the headwaters of the Greenbrier River in West Virginia. This project will work with state, federal, and non-governmental partners.
  • $443,885 – Green Forests Work, Inc.
    • Funds will be used to help restore red spruce forest habitat on 274 acres of legacy mine lands, planting approximately 184,000 trees at previously mined sites in the New River Gorge National Park and Monongahela National Forest in West Virginia.
The endangered hellbender salamander (Courtesy: Indiana Division of Fish & Wildlife)