Ocean in shades of turquoise and darker blue with rocky islands in the background and foreground covered with scrubby green vegetation.
Workshops will focus on draft Blueprint 2023 priorities for Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and the deeper offshore marine waters of the Atlantic Ocean and Gulf of Mexico. Photo of Trunk Bay in St. John, USVI by Cyrus Crossan on Unsplash.

Once again, we’ve hit an exciting milestone in the development of the Southeast Conservation Blueprint–it’s workshop time! Visit the workshops page to learn more and register.

This year, the 2023 Blueprint is expanding consistent methods and indicators to the U.S. Caribbean and the offshore U.S. waters of the Atlantic Ocean and Gulf of Mexico. Check out Rua’s blog for more details on the 2023 Blueprint update. We need your feedback on the draft Blueprint!

To that end, SECAS is hosting a series of 8 workshops during the last two weeks of May to review draft Southeast Blueprint 2023 across Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and the Gulf and Atlantic marine environments. Each workshop will last 1.5 hours, be hosted via Zoom, and focus on one or more of those marine or Caribbean areas. You will have the opportunity to provide detailed, spatially explicit feedback on the draft Blueprint by zooming into areas that you know and capturing places that are represented well, overprioritized, or underprioritized–as well as places that you just have questions about.

The input we gather will help ensure the Blueprint represents on-the-ground conditions and captures the priorities of the broader conservation community. It also helps us as staff prioritize future improvements. As a living plan, the Blueprint is always a work in progress, so it’s great to hear firsthand from experts and Blueprint users which “known issues” are most important to fix first!

Invitations will go out shortly to the 2,400+ people who have either used the Blueprint or participated in the development of the Southeast Blueprint over the years—or were recommended as reviewers in these new and improved Blueprint subregions—but anyone is welcome.

And of course, workshops are free! Please feel free to spread the word with folks who might be interested! If you have questions, contact me at hilary_morris@fws.gov.

Here’s the link to the workshop page one more time: https://secassoutheast.org/workshops. Hope to see you there!