"Having worked with Deborah Perkins for twenty years, she's without question one of the best wildlife biologists in Maine. What elevates her above colleagues is her breadth and knowledge of wildlife habitat management. Interested in enhancing your property for butterflies? She's your person. Concerned about bobolinks and meadowlarks? Deborah can design field management to benefit these and other grassland songbirds. If you hunt grouse and woodcock, she can manage early successional habitat for these game birds. In short, she's the most well rounded biologist in Maine. And you'll never meet a better person who will listen to your wildlife goals."
Ron Joseph, retired Maine wildlife biologist
Deb has a knack for connecting and communicating easily with both landowners and wildlife professionals. I’ve always been impressed with her breadth of wildlife knowledge from pollinators to deer and all things in-between, and how best to manage habitat to help them thrive. When we worked together on a complex restoration project in Maine, she really dug into finding creative options given the site conditions and diverse landowner goals. She thoughtfully created an excellent plan that worked for everyone.
Kelly Boland, New England Cottontail Coordinator (former)
“Deb Perkins worked with me for a year to develop a longterm land use plan for my farm in Greene, Maine. The project was and is quite complex encompassing watershed, wildlife and conservation issues including bee and bird populations, plantings, constructions and maintenance. Throughout the project, Deb has been an outstanding and invaluable source of expertise, and beyond that, a trusted friend respectful of my additional concerns of my property’s historic significance and my personal gardening aesthetic. I recommend her brilliance without reservation.”
Lew Alessio, landowner
"The Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife contracted with First Light for recommendations and development of a wildlife plan, incorporating native shrub species, as part of a multi-faceted project designed to benefit New England cottontail. Deb's ability to think outside the box, her shared vision and creativity led to an inspired scenario complementing existing site conditions and habitat goals. Her engagement in the work and effective communication with all involved resulted in a thorough, yet flexible plan which can serve as a template for similar habitat projects in the futur."
Eric Hoar, Lands Management Biologist, Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife
"Deb was great to work with because she really listened to our concerns and interests regarding the wildlife on the property. We worked with her to find practices that would be mutually beneficial to the farm’s livestock and pastures such as kestrel boxes and invasive plant control. The plan Deb produced was thorough and walked us through the management practices, referenced the farm’s Forest Management Plan (for comparison and historical information), and demonstrated how implementing various practices would benefit the wildlife over time."
Jake Galle & Abby Sadauckas, Apple Creek Farm, Bowdoinham, ME
“We have worked with Deb Perkins who prepared a plan for a wildlife cutback border, wild bee forage and kestrel, bat and barred owl houses. NRCS staff and their regional biologist think very highly of Deb as do we. We have found her to be knowledgeable, informative and open to the landowners' plan suggestions and modifications. She regularly sends unsolicited wildlife and habitat articles unrelated to her plan when she thinks they might be helpful. Her follow-up is excellent and she always displays a genuine interest in the work and its impact. We highly recommend Deb and would be happy to speak directly with anyone interested in working with her.”
Tony & Marianne Marple, landowners
"Deborah Perkins has been contracted by Sebasticook Regional Land Trust (SRLT) to assess and write up two wildlife management plans for the Fowler Bog Preserve and Great Farm Brook Preserve. She has been very thorough and informative on ecological recommendations based on the properties previous history and current management objectives and goals. These recommendations have sparked both staff and volunteers to implement wildlife and land management activities on these properties to further enhance the ecological benefits of the lands."
Sebasticook Regional Land Trust
Jennifer Irving, Executive Director & Daniel H Hill, Board Member
“I’m happy to say that I have known Deb Perkins for three years now! Deb helped to develop a plan that I implemented for NRCS ( Natural Resources Conservation Service) for some of my old farm property. She and I walked the property and discussed what would work well for conservation and my goals for the property and came up with a plan that met both NRCS and my goals. I have started a program with NRCS and have consulted Deb a number of times for advice in regards to the different aspects of conservation that NRCS is asking to be implemented and she has been a great help explaining some of the processes. She has provided a great number of resources available for conservation as well as information on distributors of materials and plantings that I need. Deb has been an excellent resource for me and I look forward to working with her in my ongoing projects with NRCS. Thanks Deb.”
Gary Stevens, landowner
"Although I would have preferred to walk my property with Deb from First Light Wildlife Habitats in person, I chose a virtual consultation. Prior to our online meeting, I completed a brief survey to let her know what I wanted to focus on in regards to enhancing my property for wildlife. In addition, I sent her photos and a rough sketch of buildings, vegetation, etc. to give her an idea of what was there. Shortly before our online meeting, she sent me a few attachments (e.g., maps) that we referenced during our discussion. Deb appeared online right on time, and after a quick review of my primary concerns, we began talking about options for removing nonnative plant species, adding refuge/cover for wildlife, and plants to support pollinators. She provided a lot of information, and although I was worried about remembering or writing all of it down, there was no need. Deb created a personal, private Pinterest page for me with all the plant species she suggested, sent me a report summarizing everything we discussed, AND sent me the recording of our online conversation – all of which has been very helpful! Deb was easy to speak with, listened to and addressed all my topics of interest, and also answered a couple of random questions by email since our consultation. If you are interested in making your property more wildlife-friendly, I highly recommend a consultation with Deb and/or attending one of the various lectures she offers!"
Tammy C, landowner