JV8 Central Grasslands Conservation Initiative

JV8 Business Plan just published!


North American native grasslands are disappearing.

Grasslands are incredible ecosystems that support bird populations, pollinators, working lands, carbon sequestration, opportunities for hunting and outdoor recreation, and water security. The loss of grasslands and the benefits they provide impacts rural communities and economies across the continent.


Musselshell Grasslands. Photo © Dan Casey


Northern Bobwhite. Photo © Jim Giocomo

Over the last 40 years, North American grassland bird populations have declined faster than any other group of birds. Over three-quarters of grassland bird species have shown significant population declines.

Since 1970, North American grassland birds have lost 53% of their population.


While populations of birds that depend on wetland habitats have rebounded due to conservation efforts, other birds are declining at rapid rates, especially those that depend on grasslands (Data from Rosenberg, K. V., et al. 2019. Decline of the North American avifauna. Science 366: 120-124. Graphic by Miruh Hamend, Playa Lakes Joint Venture).

Migratory Bird Joint Ventures helped turn things around for wetland birds. Now we are applying that strategy to grassland birds.

Through the JV8 Central Grasslands Initiative (JV8), eight Migratory Bird Joint Ventures — representing over 100 federal, state, provincial, non-profit, and industry conservation partners across the U.S., Canada, Indigenous Nations, and Mexico — are collaborating to stem grassland losses and the negative impacts to migratory birds. JV8 is implementing grassland conservation programs across a landscape of 700 million acres and multiple nations to stabilize and in some cases recover grassland bird populations and their habitats.

Our Vision: By working together, we can create a world where the central grasslands from Canada to Mexico support stable, thriving, and diverse communities of birds, other wildlife, and people into the future.

Grasshopper Sparrow. Photo © Kevin Barnes


MAY 2024
A Business Plan to Recover North America’s Central Grasslands: Strategies, Funding, and Partnerships Needed to Save One of the World’s Most Endangered Ecosystems

The plan is a bold and ambitious blueprint to support and scale up grassland habitat collaboration with the Central Grasslands Roadmap, the biome-wide effort that is bringing together eight sectors with a shared vision, common principles, and collaborative priorities for the many people and organizations living and working on the Central Grasslands. JV8 and the Central Grasslands Roadmap have set a bold agenda for innovating new approaches and scaling investments to recover part of North America’s greatest grasslands. DOWNLOAD NOW.

For more information about the JV8 Central Grasslands Conservation Initiative, contact JV8 Manager Ali Duvall at manager@jv8.org.

To learn more about each Joint Venture, click on a logo to visit their website or contact the JV Coordinator listed below.

Northern Great Plains Joint Venture
Oaks and Prairies Joint Venture
Prairie Habitat Joint Venture
Prairie Pothole Joint Venture
Playa Lakes Joint Venture
Rainwater Basin Joint Venture
Rio Grande Joint Venture
Sonoran Joint Venture

Northern Great Plains JV
Catherine Wightman, 406-599-7384

Oaks and Prairies JV
Robert Perez, 830-305-2912

Prairie Habitat JV
Barry Robinson, 587-920-6037

Prairie Pothole JV
Lauri Hanauska-Brown, 406-594-6943

Playa Lakes JV
Mike Carter, 303-918-7486

Sonoran JV
Jennie Duberstein, 520-269-9313

Rio Grande JV
Karen Chapman, 432-349-3375

Rainwater Basin JV
Andy Bishop, 308-382-8112

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Banner photo © Dan Casey