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Common garter snake

BJ Byers

BJ joined Groundswell in 2019 as our Conservationist and was promoted to Land Management Director in 2023.  He primarily works on land management at Westport Prairie, Patrick Marsh, as well as on Groundswell’s other fee simple lands.  Each year he works to conserve native habitats protected by Groundswell which includes planning and coordinating native prairie plantings, restoring oak savannas, and controlling invasive weeds and brush that threaten these ecosystems.  When he’s not out restoring native habitats, he’s helping with Groundswell’s annual conservation easement monitoring.

BJ also leads our outdoor volunteer program and is always looking for help.  Sign up on our Outdoor Volunteering list if you would like to help make a difference!

Before joining Groundswell,  BJ earned his master’s degree in wildlife ecology at UW-Madison, where he studied grassland birds and prairie management.  After grad school, he was a Private Lands Biologist with the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service where he worked one-on-one with private landowners to restore native tallgrass prairie, oak savanna, and wetland habitats.

In his spare time, you may find BJ fly & ice fishing, deer & turkey hunting, photographing nature, botanizing, birdwatching, or vegetable gardening with his wife Carolyn and son Jay in Madison.