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The purpose of this report is to explore current oil and gas energy development in the area encompassing the Wyoming Landscape Conservation Initiative. The Wyoming Landscape Conservation Initiative is a long-term science-based effort to ensure southwestern Wyoming’s wildlife and habitat remain viable in areas facing development pressure. Wyoming encompasses some of the highest quality wildlife habitats in the Intermountain West. At the same time, this region is an important source of natural gas. Using Geographic Information System technology, energy data pertinent to the conservation decision-making process have been assembled to show historical oil and gas exploration and production in southwestern Wyoming....
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Habitat similarity index (HSI) values for greater sage-grouse across their western range. HSI values represent the relationship of environmental values at map locations to the multivariate model of minimum requirements for sage-grouse defined by land cover, anthropogenic variables, soil, topography, and climate.
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Understanding a species’ behavioral response to rapid environmental change is an ongoing challenge in modern conservation. Anthropogenic landscape modification, or “human footprint,” is well documented as a central cause of large mammal decline and range contractions where the proximal mechanisms of decline are often contentious. Direct mortality is an obvious cause; alternatively, human‐modified landscapes perceived as unsuitable by some species may contribute to shifts in space use through preferential habitat selection. A useful approach to tease these effects apart is to determine whether behaviors potentially associated with risk vary with human footprint. We hypothesized wolverine (Gulo gulo) behaviors vary...
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Streams across the world are highly fragmented due to the presence of in-stream barriers (e.g., dams and stream-road crossings), many of which restrict or block fish passage. Retrofitting or replacing these structures is a high priority for restoring habitat connectivity for native fishes and other aquatic organisms in the Pacific Northwest. The task of restoring habitat connectivity for problematic stream-road crossings is daunting given the many thousands of barriers that are present and the massive financial investments required. Further, the potential risks to road infrastructure from flooding, debris flows, and climate change will need to be addressed to ensure the best allocation of resources. In this study,...
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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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Many Arctic shorebird populations are declining, and quantifying adult survival and the effects of anthropogenic factorsis a crucial step toward a better understanding of population dynamics. We used a recently developed, spatially explicitCormack–Jolly–Seber model in a Bayesian framework to obtain broad-scale estimates of true annual survival rates for 6species of shorebirds at 9 breeding sites across the North American Arctic in 2010–2014. We tested for effects ofenvironmental and ecological variables, study site, nest fate, and sex on annual survival rates of each species in thespatially explicit framework, which allowed us to distinguish between effects of variables on site fidelity versus truesurvival. Our...
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The Arctic Coastal Plain (ACP) of Alaska is an important region for millions of migrating and nesting shorebirds. However, this region is threatened by climate change and increased human development (e.g., oil and gas production) that have the potential to greatly impact shorebird populations and breeding habitat in the near future. Because historic data on shorebird distributions in the ACP are very coarse and incomplete, we sought to develop detailed, contemporary distribution maps so that the potential impacts of climate-mediated changes and development could be ascertained. To do this, we developed and mapped habitat suitability indices for eight species of shorebirds (Black-bellied Plover [Pluvialis squatarola],...
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Successful implementation of environmental flow projects depends on land and water managers having clear objectives and access to reliable data. This guidebook provides information on a variety of methods that can be utilized under different fiscal or temporal constraints to determine and implement appropriate environmental flow targets. Based on evidence from cases focused in the Southwestern United States and Northern Mexico, steps are suggested to help ensure maintenance of flows under uncertain future natural and socioeconomic conditions. The importance of education and engagement to increase acceptance of environmental flows based projects and gain key player and community buy in is described. Limitations on...
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In practice, there are a number of challenges associated with formal consideration of the environment in water planning in large parts of the Desert LCC region. In Arizona, for example, there is no legal requirement to include the environment in water management or planning efforts (Megdal et al. 201 0). Therefore, there is little incentive to develop the additional tools and resources required to include the environment as a water demand sector. Appropriate inclusion of the environment into water planning requires conducting planning at a scale and geography that matches regional hydrology rather than political boundaries. Therefore, without explicit policy guidance from state government, regional stakeholders...
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With extraordinary resolution and accuracy, Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR)-derived digital elevation models (DEMs) have been increasingly used for watershed analyses and modeling by hydrologists, planners and engineers. Such high-accuracy DEMs have demonstrated their effectiveness in delineating watershed and drainage patterns at fine scales in low-relief terrains. However, these high-resolution datasets are usually only available as topographic DEMs rather than hydrologic DEMs, presenting greater land roughness that can affect natural flow accumulation. Specifically, locations of drainage structures such as road culverts and bridges were simulated as barriers to the passage of drainage. This paper proposed...
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El límite fronterizo entre México y los Estados Unidos actualmente presenta a lo largo del área geográfica barreras (para vehículos y peatones), como medida de seguridad para disminuir la entrada de migrantes indocumentados y estupefacientes. El muro fronterizo ha fragmentado los ecosistemas presentes en la región, pudiendo influir en la pérdida de la conectividad de poblaciones de fauna silvestre entre ambos países. Ante tal situación nuestro objetivo fue identificar las áreas más importantes de conectividad para 19 especies que se distribuyen en la franja fronteriza dentro de los estados de Sonora y Chihuahua y los principales impactos que puede tener la estructura asociada a la frontera. Los sitios de conectividad...
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Synopsis: Agricultural intensification and expansion are major present and future causes of global ecosystem disruption. Natural and semi-natural reserve areas in agroecosystems are thought to be important for preservation of essential ecosystem services such as pollination, but data about land use patterns and pollinator abundance are lacking. We assessed wild bee populations in canola fields in an agriculturally intense area where virtually all land was either tilled agricultural fields or semi-natural grazed pasturelands, with the expectation that mosaics of land use types may better support ecosystem services than homogenous crop areas. Fields were chosen in two categories, five with little or no pastureland...
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Synopsis: The goal of this study was to examine contaminant loadings associated with stormwater runoff from recently burned areas in urban fringe areas of southern California, to derive regional patterns of runoff and contaminant loadings in this context. Postfire stormwater runoff was sampled from five wildfires that each burned between 115 and 658 km2 of natural open space between 2003 and 2009. The area is characterized by classic Mediterranean climate conditions of relatively mild to cool wet winter and warm to hot dry summers. Between two and five storm events were sampled per site over the first one to two years following the fires for basic constituents, metals, nutrients, total suspended solids, and polycyclic...
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Synopsis: Wind erosion is considered a problem when the erosion level exceeds the tolerable limit for the soil or when the erosion level is great enough to damage the crops being grown. Wind erosion control must be tailored to each farming situation and may be achieved through a combination of practices that ultimately create isolated fields, the key to wind erosion control systems. Wind erosion control measures can be grouped into four components: (1) tree and shrub windbreaks; (2) annual and perennial vegetative barriers; (3) strip cropping and trap strips; and (4) crop residues and cover crops. Wind control system design involves 4 basic principles: (1) erosion rates are predicted using the wind erosion equation;...
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Conclusions: The study recorded flushing responses (whether or not an animal fled in response to disturbance) and flush distances of 6 species of diurnal raptors exposed to walking and vehicle disturbances in order to calculate minimum distances for species-specific buffer zones. In general, walking disturbances resulted in more flushing than vehicle disturbances for all species except the prairie falcon. For walking disturbances, a linear relationship existed between flight distance and body mass, with lighter species flushing at shorter distances; however, this trend did not hold for vehicle disturbance. Birds flushed at much shorter distances in response to approaching vehicles. Thresholds/Learnings: Buffer...
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Synopsis: Windbreaks are a major component of successful agricultural landscapes. At the farm scale, they help control erosion and blowing snow, improve animal health and survival under winter conditions, reduce energy consumption of the farmstead, and enhance habitat diversity. At a landscape scale, they provide habitat for various types of wildlife and have the potential to contribute significant benefits to the carbon balance equation, thereby easing the economic burdens associated with climate change. The effectiveness of a windbreak is determined partially by its external structure including its height, length, orientation, continuity, width, and cross-sectional shape and partially by its internal structure...
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Conclusions: Caribou demonstrated patterns of avoidance near linear features such as pipelines, roads, and other oil field structures. Females demonstrated heightened avoidance, especially during calving seasons. Thresholds/Learnings: Synopsis: This study documented the behavioural reactions of caribou to oil development in the circumpolar regions of the northern hemisphere. Researchers observed patterns of avoidance near linear features such as pipelines, roads, and other oil field structures. Female caribou, especially those accompanied by calves avoided these areas in particular. Male caribou were more apt to occupy areas influenced by oil field structures and activity. In summary, the patterns oil field development...
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Synopsis: Synthesizes information on a range of tools for reducing the footprint of human use, with an intended focus on public lands and associated natural resources. Implementation considerations and links to other resources are provided. Many tools are related either directly or indirectly to landscape patterns. For example, the section on “Disturbance Standards, Limits, or Thresholds” provides guidance and case study examples of pattern-based threshold establishment and implementation considerations in Alberta, California, and Australia. Many other Integrated Land Management tools outlined also relate directly or indirectly to landscape patterns and techniques for their management. Selected examples under the...


map background search result map search result map Video: Exploration and Production Through Time, produced for report: Oil and Gas Development in Southwestern Wyoming—Energy Data and Services for the Wyoming Landscape Conservation Initiative (WLCI), Sage Grouse HSI (habitat similarity index) Caribou in the Changing North Integrated Land Management Tools Compendium Can pastureland increase wild bee abundance in agriculturally intense areas? Response of wintering grassland raptors to human disturbance. Stormwater contaminant loading following southern California wildfires Windbreaks in North American Agricultural Systems Design and use of field windbreaks in wind erosion control systems Áreas de Interés Binacional para Mantener la Conectividad de Poblaciones de Fauna Silvestre Compartida con Potenciales Afectaciones por la Construcción del Muro Fronterizo Basement domain map of the conterminous United States and Alaska (COPY06) Lithology, hydrologic characteristics, and water quality of the Arkansas River Valley alluvial aquifer in the vicinity of Van Buren, Arkansas (COPY02) Where the Stream Meets the Road: Prioritizing Culvert Replacement for Fish Passage - Thesis Desert Flows Methodology Guidebook Watershed Management Planning Materials and A Demonstration in the Upper Gila River Watershed Publication: A Semi-Automated, Multi-Source Data Fusion Update of aWetland Inventory for East-Central Minnesota Drainage Structure Datasets and Effects on LiDAR-Derived Surface Flow Modeling Environmental and ecological conditions at Arctic breeding sites have limited effects on true survival rates of adult shorebirds Predicting breeding shorebird distributions on the Arctic Coastal Plain of Alaska Wolverine behavior varies spatially with anthropogenic footprint: implications for conservation and inferences about declines Sage Grouse HSI (habitat similarity index) Lithology, hydrologic characteristics, and water quality of the Arkansas River Valley alluvial aquifer in the vicinity of Van Buren, Arkansas (COPY02) Where the Stream Meets the Road: Prioritizing Culvert Replacement for Fish Passage - Thesis Response of wintering grassland raptors to human disturbance. Wolverine behavior varies spatially with anthropogenic footprint: implications for conservation and inferences about declines Drainage Structure Datasets and Effects on LiDAR-Derived Surface Flow Modeling Watershed Management Planning Materials and A Demonstration in the Upper Gila River Watershed Áreas de Interés Binacional para Mantener la Conectividad de Poblaciones de Fauna Silvestre Compartida con Potenciales Afectaciones por la Construcción del Muro Fronterizo Video: Exploration and Production Through Time, produced for report: Oil and Gas Development in Southwestern Wyoming—Energy Data and Services for the Wyoming Landscape Conservation Initiative (WLCI), Publication: A Semi-Automated, Multi-Source Data Fusion Update of aWetland Inventory for East-Central Minnesota Stormwater contaminant loading following southern California wildfires Integrated Land Management Tools Compendium Predicting breeding shorebird distributions on the Arctic Coastal Plain of Alaska Desert Flows Methodology Guidebook Environmental and ecological conditions at Arctic breeding sites have limited effects on true survival rates of adult shorebirds Basement domain map of the conterminous United States and Alaska (COPY06) Caribou in the Changing North Windbreaks in North American Agricultural Systems Design and use of field windbreaks in wind erosion control systems