This project assessed the potential effects of climate change on tidal marsh habitats and bird populations, identified priority sites for tidal marsh conservation and restoration, and developed a web-based mapping tool for managers to interactively display and query results. Project results can be found at PRBO’s San Francisco Bay Sea-Level Rise Website
Our proposal addresses Funding Category Ill by evaluating natural resource management practices and adaptation opportunities. More specifically, our project addresses Science Need #6 to improve monitoring and inventory of watersheds and ecosystems (including invasive species). Our proposed study will occur within the Southern Rockies Landscape Conservation Cooperative (LCC) (upper Virgin River, UT) and the Desert LCC (lower Virgin River, AZ and NVL and therefore will be submitting to both cooperatives. Invasive saltcedar (Tamarix spp.) is the third most abundant tree in Southwestern riparian systems (Friedman et al. 2005). Resource managers must often balance the management goals of protecting wildlife species and...
There are few resources that provide managers cross-scale information for planning climate adaptation strategies for species and taxa at risk. Appropriate allocation of resources requires an understanding of mechanisms influencing a species’ risk to global change. Dr. Griffis-Kyle will produce a manuscript for peer-reviewed publication and create content for web pages that can be included on the Desert LCC website that provide modules on amphibian climate adaptation strategies. This work is associated with addressing Desert LCC Critical Management Question 4: Physiological Stress of Climate Change and follows a webinar that Dr. Griffis-Kyle presented for the Desert LCC’s CMQ 4 team, titled “Climate and Desert Amphibian...
Effects of Genotype and Management Treatments of Native and Invasive Herbs on Success of Sagebrush Restoration
FY2013The increase in large wildfires at a time when habitat for Greater Sage Grouse and other species dependent on big sagebrush has also increased has led to substantial needs for big sagebrush seeds. Significant decisions on which sagebrush seed to use and on management treatments that affect competing herb layers on the same restoration sites affect the trajectory of habitat.This project will evaluate how seed source, specifically genotype and climate-of-origin, interact with landscape-scale and replicated treatments (fencing, herbicide application, mowing, and seeding).
This project will be focused on hosting 2-3 workshops in 2013 to train people to conduct the Springs Stewardship Institute’s spring assessment protocol and promote it as a standardized method. This will facilitate standardized data collection across the landscape that can contribute to a broad-scale inventory and assessment of springs, seeps, and aquatic resources throughout the Desert LCC.
Forecasting the Impacts of Climate Change in the Columbia River Basin: Threats to Fish Habitat Connectivity
Improvement of the National Hydrography Dataset for parts of the Lower Colorado River Region and additional areas of importance to the Desert Landscape Conservation Cooperative
The Desert LCC will provide the 50% of the Federal component of funds, and the work designed will support the science objectives for the Desert LCC and its partners as well as provide needed improvements to the National Hydrography Dataset (NHD) in the Lower Colorado River Region, and beyond. Basic improvement of the NHD at the 1:24,000 scale will provide an important framework basis for the development of hydrologic models required to address effects of climate change. An accurate surface water map will support the following specific DLCC objectives and needs: Hydrologic and biological modeling Accurate determination of perennial and intermittent classification Impacts on flow due to storms (particularly in the...
Document Fine Scale Linkage Areas and Conservation Delivery of the Northern Rockies in US and Canada
This project is an initiative to secure landscape-scale movement opportunities for multiple wildlife species in the Rocky Mountains of Montana and Idaho and adjacent transboundary areas of British Columbia and Alberta. Identify specific wildlife linkage locations across highways 1, 2, 200, 95 and I-90 in Northwest Montana and North Idaho. Recommend and implement with partners conservation delivery in these areas on public and private lands, and across highways to make these movement areas more permeable to wildlife.Objective: Identify and secure landscape-scale movement opportunities for multiple wildlife species in the Rocky Mountains of Montana and Idaho in cooperation with similar efforts in adjacent transboundary...
Most natural resource managers, planners and policy makers are now dependent upon spatially explicit environmental suitability and spatial allocation analyses to inform policy and management decisions. However, staff across agencies has been unable to stay current on understanding and applying these new data, tools and analyses. Currently, this information may be underutilized or used inappropriately, which could result in poor decisions. Two training curricula were developed – one for managers and one for GIS analysts – on current best practices for developing and using spatial information to support conservation decision making. The training materials are open-source and widely distributed to California LCC stakeholders.
Native Nations face unique challenges related to climate change, many of which are detailed in recent reports as part of the U.S. National Climate Assessment (Bennett et al. 2014; Hiza Redsteer et al. 2013). Native Americans have a deep connection to the natural environment within which their livelihoods, cultural identity, and spiritual practices are rooted. Changes to hydrologic regimes, landscapes, and ecosystems, in combination with socio-economic and political factors, amplify tribal vulnerabilities to climate change. In the Southwest, tribes are already experiencing a range of impacts that are at least partially related to climate change. They include serious water supply and water quality issues in the...
Development of Tools and Technology to Improve the Success and Planning of Restoration of Big Sagebrush Ecosystems
FY2013Shrub-dominated ecosystems of the Great Basin are being threatened by disturbances, typically wildfire followed by encroachment of invasive plants (e.g., cheat grass). To mitigate these threats and future changes in the climate to big sagebrush (Artemisia tridentata), restorationists require a knowledge base and tools to inform them of the most appropriate seed sources to plant to greatly enhance the success of restoration under contemporary and future climates. We propose to develop climate-responsive seed transfer zones based on associating plant quantitative traits and ecophysiological data from common gardens to the climate of the seed source.
Predicting Snow Water Equivalence (SWE) and Soil Moisture Response to Restoration Treatments in Headwater Ponderosa Pine Forests of the Desert LCC
Northern Arizona University will build upon the U.S. Forest Service Four Forest Restoration Initiative in Northern Arizona to investigate how restoration efforts can affect the water volume available in the snowpack and soil moisture in the Desert LCC. This project will result in a tool that can be used to predict the water volume in snowpack and soil moisture response to various forest treatments.
University of Arizona will conduct an ecosystem conservation assessment for the lower San Pedro (LSP) watershed. The assessment will provide a science-based strategic design for prioritizing where conservation efforts are most needed for high-value biodiversity conservation at the landscape-level and offer insights on conservation actions practical for implementation. The assessment will include an evaluation of high-value biodiversity, hydro-ecological processes, protected areas, landscape connectivity, and climate change adaptation. The study will suggest approaches for developing a new conservation framework for watershed conservation planning.