9 Skyway Ave, Frenchville, ME 04745, us
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(207) 543-5050


USJRO

Upper St. John River Organization

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Promoting St. John Valley Nature through

Habitat Management, Natural Science Education,

& Outdoor Recreation

*Free Science Info*

the Upper St. John River Organization - What We Are Doing

Promoting Nature and Science

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The USJRO is a non-profit organization focused on promoting deep appreciation of our local nature.  


We promote wildlife habitat and biodiversity enhancement, and soil & water quality conservation, and focus our efforts in the St. John Valley international boundary area.  


We offer Free Downloadable Science & Nature Publications from this website.


Go to Our Free Natural Science Downloads

Creating Educational, Recreational, and Employment Opprtunities

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The Towns of Frenchville and Grand Isle have designated community-owned 

Habitat Management Areas (HMA).

A detailed forest habitat assessment was completed on these parcels with grant sponsorship from the National Science Foundation, the University of Maine at Orono, EPSCOR, and the 

Maine Outdoor Heritage Fund.

A Dark Sky Observatory was erected at a Frenchville site in 2018, and interpretive nature trails are planned in 2019.  

We have employed university students and others for inventory and management activities, and plan to expand these opportunities.

Providing a Land Trust for the Endangered Furbish's Lousewort plant, Wildlife Habitat, & Biodiversity

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 The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is reviewing the status of the Furbish's lousewort and writing a new recovery plan for this species, which only occurs along the banks of the St. John River. Conservation plans will be developed for each site where it occurs. The USJRO is currently pursuing 501c3 non-profit status as a Land Trust to become a partner in conserving lousewort habitat, and other areas managed for wildlife habitat and biodiversity.


We have adopted Standards for Wildlife Habitat & Biodiversity assessments and management, which are available for download below.

Download USJRO Standards for Wildlife Habitat & Biodiversity

Our Vision and Mission

Our Vision

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The Upper St. John River Organization will contribute to sustainability of the region by increasing knowledge and awareness of the many values of our forests, aquatic systems, and other natural resources, and providing services for their conservation, sustainable management, and sustainable development.

Our Mission

Impaired watersheds in our region (shown) can be improved by waterside trees and other vegetation.

The Upper St. John River Organization will help to sustain our natural resources by providing planning, organization, project management, field work, and GIS-based information technology services and support for projects related to natural resource conservation and management, natural science education, outdoor recreation, and sustainable development.

Our Geographic Scope

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The geographic scope of the USJRO includes the drainages to the St. John River in the international border area of 

the United States and Canada.


Office Location and International Directorship

The St. John River in Frenchville, Long Lake and other Fish River Lakes in the distance.

The main office and executive directorship of the Upper St. John River Organization will be located in the St. John River Valley in the U.S., and >50% of the Directorship of the USJRO will be located on the U.S. side of the border.

The Fish River Chain of Lakes

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 The USJRO was created from the Fish River Lakes Water Quality Association, and these lakes will remain a focus of our interest and activities. 

Tree of Life - Arbre de Vie

Cedar seedling are kept in temporary storage (25 seedlings / 1 gallon container) until distribution.

Northern White Cedar, a.k.a. Arbre de Vie or Arborvitae is of concern to us, and will continue to be a focus of our conservation and wildlife habitat and water quality enhancement efforts.  CedarWorks from Rockport Maine provides cedar seedlings for our annual give-away.  The USJRO has partnered with the Aroostook County Conservation Association in free distribution of 11,000 Northern White Cedar seedlings per year from 2015-2018.

Standards of the Upper St. John River Organization

Maine is the most forested state in the US.  Maine, New Brunswick, and Quebec, neighbors in the Acadian or Northern Forest Ecoregion, contain about 25 forest types, each providing certain habitats at each development stage.  The USJRO will strive to maintain and enhance forest biodiversity through appreciation of the complex matrix of forest and non-forest habitats.


The USJRO has adopted official Standards for Wildlife Habitat & Biodiversity measurements and management, and natural science education.  Click the following link to download.

USJRO_Standards_Wildlife_Habitat_Biodiversity_2019 (pdf)

Download

Free GIS Layer Downloads

GIS layers for use in ArcMap or other software.  Keep similarly named files in separate directories.

Files coming soon.

USJRO Partners

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The Aroostook County Conservation Association

The ACCA has been the main partner of the USJRO for over a decade.

The ACCA had its beginnings focusing on predator control to help white-tailed deer in northern Maine.

Now, the ACCA promotes the Standards for Wildlife Habitat and Biodiversity Assessments and Management as the USJRO.

cleck the image to visit the CedarWorks website.

CedarWorks & Northern White Cedar seedlings

Cedarworks is a Maine company located in Rockport that manufactures playsets and other products with Northern White Cedar.  


Cedarworks donates thousands of Northern White Cedar Seedlings to the USJRO and ACCA annually (11,000/year from 2015-2018).


The USJRO and ACCA care for an distribute these seedlings for free to interested landowners, and conduct planting trials on community-owned parcels.

Call us for trees or to help with tree distribution or planting.

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The St. John River Watershed Association of Quebec

The OBV du fleuve Saint-Jean is sponsored by the Province of Quebec to conduct various conservation activities in the St. John River watershed.  

We share overlapping interests in the St. John River, and their President is a Director of the USJRO.

USJRO Partners and Sponsors

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US Fish & Wildlife Service - Furbish's Lousewort

The Partners for Fish and Wildlife Program of the US Fish & Wildlife Service (USFWS) is interested in conservation of the Endangered Furish's Lousewort plant.

The USFWS has partnered with Steve Young of One World Artisans through the Partners for Fish and Wildlife Program for over a decade.  

The USFWS is interested in the USJRO owning properties or holding conservation easements for conservation and restoration of Furbish's Lousewort habitats along the St. John River.

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The Maine Deer Habitat Partnership Program

The Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife (MDIFW) and the Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS) partnered to sponsor the Maine Deer Habitat Partnership project in 2012.  

Many landowners expressed interest in long-term habitat management partnership, which the USJRO will pursue.

The USJRO will continue to promote partnership and agreement for wildlife habitat management with the MDIFW to meet common goals.

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the USDA NRCS

The NRCS is active in Aroostook county with 3 District offices.  The USJRO will seek to expand partnership to meet common goals.

The NRCS was main sponsor of the Maine Deer Habitat Partnership project in 2012. Individual Wildlife Conservation Activity Plans were developed by Steve Young as a Technical Service Provider for the NRCS in Wildlife Conservation Activity Planning. 

St. John Valley Community Forest Project Sponsors

click logo to visit the University of Maine FBRI.

Forest Biofuel Research Institute (FBRI)

The University of Maine FBRI provided grant funding for the St. John Valley Community Forest Project from 2007-2009.

Detailed forest inventories and forecasts were created for individual sections of community-owned forested parcels.

Some of these properties have been designated as Acadian Forest Habitat Management Areas for habitat, education, an recreation.

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National Science Foundation EPSCoR

The NSF Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR) provided grant funding for the St. John Valley Community Forest project through the University of Maine.

Students at the University of Maine at Fort Kent and local professionals were employed to map parcel sections with geographic information system (GIS), and systematically collect forest information.

There are excellent opportunities for follow-up forest growth & yield inventories for wildlife habitat and biodiversity management.


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The Maine Outdoor Heritage Fund (MOHF)

The Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife MOHF program provided grant funding to the Upper St. John Valley Community Forest Project from 2007-2009.  

Detailed forest inventories and forecasts were conducted on community parcels, and some have now been officially designated Acadian Forest Habitat Management Areas.

This project led to the formation of the Upper St. John River Organization, when project leader Steve Young revived the Fish River Lakes Water Quality Association with expanded scope. 

Upper St. John River Organization Directors

A Land Trust for Northern Maine and Community Forest Parcels

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We are pursuing 501c3 Land Trust status.  Do you own property that you want to continue to provide wildlife habitats?  Contact us if you want help in appreciating nature on your property.

Help Us Help Our Nature

We offer help with GIS-based land management planning and habitat enhancements, and we distribute cedar, silver maple and other trees and shrubs for water quality protection and habitat enhancement.  Please contact us if you want to participate.

Natural Science and Education

Frenchville and Grand Isle have designated Acadian Forest Habitat Management Areas.  Opportunities on these parcels include natural science inventories and monitoring, hiking, and bicycling.  Dark sky and nature observatories are planned for some of these parcels.

Contact Us

Help Us Help Our Nature - Get Involved!

Upper St. John River Organization

(207) 543-5050