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Within the time frame of the longevity of tree species, climate change will change faster than the ability of natural tree migration. Migration lags may result in reduced productivity and reduced diversity in forests under current management and climate change. We evaluated the efficacy of planting climate-suitable tree species (CSP), those tree species with current or historic distributions immediately south of a focal landscape, to maintain or increase aboveground biomass, productivity, and species and functional diversity. We modeled forest change with the LANDIS-II forest simulation model for 100 years (2000–2100) at a 2-ha cell resolution and five-year time steps within two landscapes in the Great Lakes region...
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For management agencies, there is a growing need to understand (1) how climate change affects and will continue to affect wildlife populations of conservation concern, and (2) how the negative Upper Midwest Great Lakes Landscape Conservation Cooperative Request for Funding 2013 demographic effects of climate change can be mitigated through management strategies. Climate Change Vulnerability Assessment (CCVA) integrates available data and scientific understanding in a transparent process, details assumptions and uncertainties, and ultimately projects population-level responses of target species to future climate change. Climate change is already influencing distributions and abundances of species throughout North...
Full life-cycle vulnerability assessments are identifying the effects of climate change on nongame migratory birds that are of conservation concern and breed in the upper Midwest and Great Lakes region. Full life-cycle analyses are critical, as current efforts likely underestimate the vulnerability of migratory land birds due to a focus on assessing only one component of the annual cycle. The approach provides a framework for integrating exposure to climate changes, sensitivity to these changes, and the potential for adaptation in both winter and summer seasons, and accounts for carry-over effects from one season to another. The results of this work will inform regional management by highlighting both local and...
The Prairie Pothole Region (PPR) of the north-central U.S. and south-central Canada contains millions of small prairie wetlands that provide critical habitat to many migrating and breeding waterbirds. Due to their small size and the relatively dry climate of the region, these wetlands are considered at high risk for negative climate change effects as temperatures increase. To estimate the potential impacts of climate change on breeding waterbirds, we predicted current and future distributions of species common in the PPR using species distribution models (SDMs). We created regional-scale SDMs for the U.S. PPR using Breeding Bird Survey occurrence records for 1971–2011 and wetland, upland, and climate variables....
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The project will utilize a 4.5 million acre study area on the Montana Glaciated Plains. The objectives are to (1) identify environmental conditions and management practices that will maintain habitat for grassland birds but not impact ranching sustainability, and (2) identify areas on the landscape that have the greatest conservation potential for grassland birds. This spatial analysis will provide the framework for a rigorous assessment of management actions on the Montana Glaciated Plains.
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Construct enclosures at Columbia Mine to house approximately 60 turtles (translocated animals) that were collected off of the right-of-way for sections 2 and 4 of I-69. Monitor the behavior, survival and reproduction of trans-located box turtles during the captive phase of the new home-range adoption process. Determine the population and habit-use characteristics of the remnant, resident box turtle population at Columbia Mine. Determine the genetics profile of individual trans-located, resident and hatchling turtles and to conduct parentage analysis of hatchlings or eggs detected. Monitor the survival, movements and habitat use of post-release, trans-located turtles for 2 years post-release.
Unconventional oil development in the Bakken shale region has increased rapidly as a result of new technologies. This region also supports a particularly high density and diversity of grassland bird species, which are declining across North America. We examined grassland bird response to unconventional oil extraction sites (i.e. developed with hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling) and associated roads in North Dakota. Our goal was to quantify the amount of habitat that was indirectly degraded by oil development, as evidenced by patterns of avoidance by birds. Grassland birds avoided areas within 149 m of roads (95% CI: 4 – 294 m), 267 m of single-bore well pads (95% CI: 157 – 377 m), and 150 m of multi-bore...
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The boundary of the Southern Rockies LCC. From metadata: Landscape conservation cooperatives (LCCs) are conservation-science partnerships between the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), and other federal agencies, states, tribes, NGOs, universities and stakeholders within a geographically defined area. They inform resource management decisions to address national-scale stressors-including habitat fragmentation, genetic isolation, spread of invasive species, and water scarcity-all of which are accelerated by climate change.
Land transformations occurring from energy development and agrarian use have altered the natural connectivity of fish communities inhabiting prairie waterways. The nation’s prairie waterways are obstructed by thousands of barriers that include road culverts, irrigation diversions, and dams. Connectivity is essential for the long term viability of aquatic species. One of the most promising adaptive management strategies for addressing impacts to aquatic systems by climate change and other landscape stressors is increasing connectivity. The purpose of this research is to characterize swimming abilities of three northern plains fish species; the sauger, the longnose dace, and the fathead minnow. The results of the...
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Map drained wetland basins in the PPR of Iowa and complete data set for the eastern (Region 3) of the U.S. Prairie Pothole Regionl. These data form the foundation for a newly launced inititative to develop an “Integrated Conservation Design Strategy for the PPR of Minnesota and Iowa.” This new initiative integrates wildlife habitat, water quality and flood attenuation objectives with wetland restoration potential maps to develop multi-objective wetland restoration plans for landscape-scale watershed.
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Within the time frame of the longevity of tree species, climate change will change faster than the ability of natural tree migration. Migration lags may result in reduced productivity and reduced diversity in forests under current management and climate change. We evaluated the efficacy of planting climate-suitable tree species (CSP), those tree species with current or historic distributions immediately south of a focal landscape, to maintain or increase aboveground biomass, productivity, and species and functional diversity. We modeled forest change with the LANDIS-II forest simulation model for 100 years (2000–2100) at a 2-ha cell resolution and five-year time steps within two landscapes in the Great Lakes region...
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The efficiency and effectiveness of aerial photography by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s Midwest Aviation Program has been improved with upgraded components for the Applanix DSS 439 Camera System, including a 60 millimeter lens and gyro-stabilization mount. Both are installed and in use. The stabilization mount improves image resolution and minimizes asymmetrical pixels. The 60 millimeter lens also improves image resolution for higher quality aerial photographs. This advanced equipment results in more accurate bird counts and stereo interpretation of vegetation maps which will ultimately assist management decisions made in biological programs.
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Rapid expansion of cropland threatens grassland ecosystems across western North America and broad-scaleplanning can be a catalyst motivating individuals and agencies to accelerate conservation. Sprague’s Pipit(Anthus spragueii) is an imperiled grassland songbird whose population has been declining rapidly in recent decades.Here, we present a strategic framework for conservation of pipits and their habitat in the northern GreatPlains.We modeled pipit distribution across its million-km2 breeding range in Canada and the U.S.We describefactors shaping distribution, delineate population cores and assess vulnerability to future grassland losses. Pipitsselected landscapes with a high proportion of continuous grassland...
In this thesis I explore a derivation of the MSAM using the DDO survey method to create a multispecies dependent double-observer abundance (MDAM) model. I use this tool to explore how two widely used grazing systems affect the abundance of eight songbird species with varying reliance on grassland vegetation in a sagebrush ecosystem.
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The Matador Ranch Grassbank is the most successful grassbank in the country, annually incentivizing conservation actions on over 200,000 acres of participating ranches. Incentives for management actions are in the form of discounts, which reduce the cost of leased grazing at the Matador Ranch. One of the required discounts for participating in the grassbank is a ranch management plan that guides grazing and benefits natural communities and the wildlife dependent upon them. This report details the results of our work to assess resource conditions and craft management plans with eight ranches on over 113,000 acres. Our analysis found that overall ranches implemented grazing management practices that maintained ecological...
This report provides a final update of work performed for the period beginning December 20, 2010 and ending December 31, 2012. The report describes two umbrella projects: (1) to improve fish passage and landscape connectivity for native species and 2) to determine the thermal effects on fish species sensitive to climate change. The work was performed through a partnership led by the Western Transportation Institute at Montana State University and the Bozeman Fish Technology Center (BFTC) of the United States Fish and Wildlife Service. The report is divided into five chapters that provide details on accomplishments to meet specific objectives outlined in our proposal during the period. Several of the projects that...
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Comprehensive wetland inventories are an essential tool for wetland management, but developing and maintaining an inventory is expensive and technically challenging. Funding for these efforts has also been problematic. Here we describe a large-area application of a semi-automated processused to update a wetland inventory for east-central Minnesota. The original inventory for this area was the product of a laborintensive, manual photo-interpretation process. The present application incorporated high resolution, multi-spectral imagery from multiple seasons; high resolution elevation data derived from lidar; satellite radar imagery; and other GIS data. Map production combined image segmentation and random forest classification...
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Completion of the National Wildlife Inventory has been identified as a top science priority for the Upper Midwest and Great Lakes-LCC (UMGL). Some areas of Minnesota and Wisconsin still have not been mapped to NWI standards. Completion of NWI is integral to developing geospatial models based on landscape-level land use. Completion of NWI will also aid in monitoring of wetlands to assess effects of climate change. Funding for this project has been leveraged with several other larger projects to improve digital wetland mapping infrastructure for Michigan, Minnesota and Wisconsin. This project is targeting a portions of Wisconsin, at least six counties, for digital conversion and updating of Wetland Inventory maps....
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The boundaries of the LCCs. The shapefile can be downloaded and opened in ArcMAP. For web services, select an option from the grey bar above the inset map. Link to metadata. From metadata: Landscape conservation cooperatives (LCCs) are conservation-science partnerships between the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), and other federal agencies, states, tribes, NGOs, universities and stakeholders within a geographically defined area. They inform resource management decisions to address national-scale stressors-including habitat fragmentation, genetic isolation, spread of invasive species, and water scarcity-all of which are accelerated by climate change.


map background search result map search result map Southern Rockies LCC Boundary Moderization of National Wetlands Inventory (NWI) mapping Iowa Wetland Assessment and Restorable Wetland Inventory:  Improving Wetland Restoration Planning Through Processing of Recently Collected LIDAR data for the Prairie Pothole Region of Iowa Grassland Bird Conservation on Working Landscapes: Spatial analysis linking populations to habitat Aviation and Remote Sensing Programs Relocation of Eastern Box Turtles to reclaimed mineland at the Patoka River NWR Creating a detailed vegetation classification and digital vegetation map for Loess Bluffs NWR Report: Climate Change Vulnerability Assessment for Species of Conservation Concern: Distributions and Demographics Across a Landscape Conservation Cooperative Publication: A Semi-Automated, Multi-Source Data Fusion Update of aWetland Inventory for East-Central Minnesota Publication: Measuring and managing resistance and resilience under climate change in northern Great Lake forests Publication: Climate change effects on northern Great Lake (USA) forests: A case for preserving diversity Assessing and Implementing Ranch Management Planning at Scale through the Matador Ranch Grassbank One step ahead of the plow: Using cropland conversion risk to guide Sprague's Pipit conservation in the northern Great Plains Creating a detailed vegetation classification and digital vegetation map for Loess Bluffs NWR Iowa Wetland Assessment and Restorable Wetland Inventory:  Improving Wetland Restoration Planning Through Processing of Recently Collected LIDAR data for the Prairie Pothole Region of Iowa Grassland Bird Conservation on Working Landscapes: Spatial analysis linking populations to habitat Assessing and Implementing Ranch Management Planning at Scale through the Matador Ranch Grassbank One step ahead of the plow: Using cropland conversion risk to guide Sprague's Pipit conservation in the northern Great Plains Moderization of National Wetlands Inventory (NWI) mapping Publication: A Semi-Automated, Multi-Source Data Fusion Update of aWetland Inventory for East-Central Minnesota Southern Rockies LCC Boundary Publication: Measuring and managing resistance and resilience under climate change in northern Great Lake forests Publication: Climate change effects on northern Great Lake (USA) forests: A case for preserving diversity Aviation and Remote Sensing Programs Report: Climate Change Vulnerability Assessment for Species of Conservation Concern: Distributions and Demographics Across a Landscape Conservation Cooperative