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Sample records for grouse centrocercus urophasianus

  1. Greater Sage-Grouse (Centrocercus Urophasianus) Hen Survival: Effects of Raptors, Anthropogenic and Landscape Features, and Hen Behavior

    OpenAIRE

    Dinkins, Jonathan B.; Conover, Michael R.; Kirol, Christopher P.; Beck, Jeffrey L.; Frey, S. Nicole

    2014-01-01

    Survival of breeding-age hens has been identified as the demographic rate with the greatest potential to influence population growth of Greater Sage-Grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus (Bonaparte, 1827); hereafter “Sage-Grouse”). During 2008–2011, we collected summer survival data from 427 Sage-Grouse hens in southern Wyoming, USA. We assessed the effects of raptor densities, anthropogenic features, landscape features, and Sage-Grouse hen behavior on Sage-Grouse hen survival. Survival of Sage-G...

  2. Nesting ecology of greater sage-grouse Centrocercus urophasianus at the eastern edge of their historic distribution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Katie M. Herman-Brunson; Kent C. Jensen; Nicholas W. Kaczor; Christopher C. Swanson; Mark A. Rumble; Robert W. Klaver

    2009-01-01

    Greater sage-grouse Centrocercus urophasianus populations in North Dakota declined approximately 67% between 1965 and 2003, and the species is listed as a Priority Level 1 Species of Special Concern by the North Dakota Game and Fish Department. The habitat and ecology of the species at the eastern edge of its historical range is largely unknown. We...

  3. Intraseasonal variation in survival and probable causes of mortality in greater sage-grouse Centrocercus urophasianus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blomberg, Erik J.; Gibson, Daniel; Sedinger, James S.; Casazza, Michael L.; Coates, Peter S.

    2013-01-01

    The mortality process is a key component of avian population dynamics, and understanding factors that affect mortality is central to grouse conservation. Populations of greater sage-grouse Centrocercus urophasianus have declined across their range in western North America. We studied cause-specific mortality of radio-marked sage-grouse in Eureka County, Nevada, USA, during two seasons, nesting (2008-2012) and fall (2008-2010), when survival was known to be lower compared to other times of the year. We used known-fate and cumulative incidence function models to estimate weekly survival rates and cumulative risk of cause-specific mortalities, respectively. These methods allowed us to account for temporal variation in sample size and staggered entry of marked individuals into the sample to obtain robust estimates of survival and cause-specific mortality. We monitored 376 individual sage-grouse during the course of our study, and investigated 87 deaths. Predation was the major source of mortality, and accounted for 90% of all mortalities during our study. During the nesting season (1 April - 31 May), the cumulative risk of predation by raptors (0.10; 95% CI: 0.05-0.16) and mammals (0.08; 95% CI: 0.03-013) was relatively equal. In the fall (15 August - 31 October), the cumulative risk of mammal predation was greater (M(mam) = 0.12; 95% CI: 0.04-0.19) than either predation by raptors (M(rap) = 0.05; 95% CI: 0.00-0.10) or hunting harvest (M(hunt) = 0.02; 95% CI: 0.0-0.06). During both seasons, we observed relatively few additional sources of mortality (e.g. collision) and observed no evidence of disease-related mortality (e.g. West Nile Virus). In general, we found little evidence for intraseasonal temporal variation in survival, suggesting that the nesting and fall seasons represent biologically meaningful time intervals with respect to sage-grouse survival.

  4. Acoustic communication in the Greater Sage-Grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) an examination into vocal sacs, sound propagation, and signal directionality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dantzker, Marc Steven

    The thesis is an inquiry into the acoustic communication of a very unusual avian species, the Greater Sage-Grouse, Centrocercus urophasianus. One of the most outstanding features of this animal's dynamic mating display is its use of paired air sacs that emerge explosively from an esophageal pouch. My first line of inquiry into this system is a review of the form and function of similar vocal apparatuses, collectively called vocal sacs, in birds. Next, with a combination of mathematical models and field measurements, My collaborator and I investigate the acoustic environment where the Greater Sage-Grouse display. The complexities of this acoustic environment are relevant both to the birds and to the subsequent examinations of the display's properties. Finally, my collaborators and I examine a cryptic component of the acoustic display --- directionality --- which we measured simultaneously from multiple locations around free moving grouse on their mating grounds.

  5. Seasonal Habitat Use by Greater Sage-Grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) on a Landscape with Low Density Oil and Gas Development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rice, Mindy B; Rossi, Liza G; Apa, Anthony D

    2016-01-01

    Fragmentation of the sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) ecosystem has led to concern about a variety of sagebrush obligates including the greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus). Given the increase of energy development within greater sage-grouse habitats, mapping seasonal habitats in pre-development populations is critical. The North Park population in Colorado is one of the largest and most stable in the state and provides a unique case study for investigating resource selection at a relatively low level of energy development compared to other populations both within and outside the state. We used locations from 117 radio-marked female greater sage-grouse in North Park, Colorado to develop seasonal resource selection models. We then added energy development variables to the base models at both a landscape and local scale to determine if energy variables improved the fit of the seasonal models. The base models for breeding and winter resource selection predicted greater use in large expanses of sagebrush whereas the base summer model predicted greater use along the edge of riparian areas. Energy development variables did not improve the winter or the summer models at either scale of analysis, but distance to oil/gas roads slightly improved model fit at both scales in the breeding season, albeit in opposite ways. At the landscape scale, greater sage-grouse were closer to oil/gas roads whereas they were further from oil/gas roads at the local scale during the breeding season. Although we found limited effects from low level energy development in the breeding season, the scale of analysis can influence the interpretation of effects. The lack of strong effects from energy development may be indicative that energy development at current levels are not impacting greater sage-grouse in North Park. Our baseline seasonal resource selection maps can be used for conservation to help identify ways of minimizing the effects of energy development.

  6. Greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) nesting and brood-rearing microhabitat in Nevada and California—Spatial variation in selection and survival patterns

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coates, Peter S.; Brussee, Brianne E.; Ricca, Mark A.; Dudko, Jonathan E.; Prochazka, Brian G.; Espinosa, Shawn P.; Casazza, Michael L.; Delehanty, David J.

    2017-08-10

    Greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus; hereinafter, "sage-grouse") are highly dependent on sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) dominated vegetation communities for food and cover from predators. Although this species requires the presence of sagebrush shrubs in the overstory, it also inhabits a broad geographic distribution with significant gradients in precipitation and temperature that drive variation in sagebrush ecosystem structure and concomitant shrub understory conditions. Variability in understory conditions across the species’ range may be responsible for the sometimes contradictory findings in the scientific literature describing sage-grouse habitat use and selection during important life history stages, such as nesting. To help understand the importance of this variability and to help guide management actions, we evaluated the nesting and brood-rearing microhabitat factors that influence selection and survival patterns in the Great Basin using a large dataset of microhabitat characteristics from study areas spanning northern Nevada and a portion of northeastern California from 2009 to 2016. The spatial and temporal coverage of the dataset provided a powerful opportunity to evaluate microhabitat factors important to sage-grouse reproduction, while also considering habitat variation associated with different climatic conditions and areas affected by wildfire. The summary statistics for numerous microhabitat factors, and the strength of their association with sage-grouse habitat selection and survival, are provided in this report to support decisions by land managers, policy-makers, and others with the best-available science in a timely manner.

  7. Development of 13 microsatellites for Gunnison Sage-grouse (Centrocercus minimus) using next-generation shotgun sequencing and their utility in Greater Sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fike, Jennifer A.; Oyler-McCance, Sara J.; Zimmerman, Shawna J; Castoe, Todd A.

    2015-01-01

    Gunnison Sage-grouse are an obligate sagebrush species that has experienced significant population declines and has been proposed for listing under the U.S. Endangered Species Act. In order to examine levels of connectivity among Gunnison Sage-grouse leks, we identified 13 novel microsatellite loci though next-generation shotgun sequencing, and tested them on the closely related Greater Sage-grouse. The number of alleles per locus ranged from 2 to 12. No loci were found to be linked, although 2 loci revealed significant departures from Hardy–Weinberg equilibrium or evidence of null alleles. While these microsatellites were designed for Gunnison Sage-grouse, they also work well for Greater Sage-grouse and could be used for numerous genetic questions including landscape and population genetics.

  8. Spatially explicit modeling of greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) habitat in Nevada and northeastern California: a decision-support tool for management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coates, Peter S.; Casazza, Michael L.; Brussee, Brianne E.; Ricca, Mark A.; Gustafson, K. Benjamin; Overton, Cory T.; Sanchez-Chopitea, Erika; Kroger, Travis; Mauch, Kimberly; Niell, Lara; Howe, Kristy; Gardner, Scott; Espinosa, Shawn; Delehanty, David J.

    2014-01-01

    Greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus, hereafter referred to as “sage-grouse”) populations are declining throughout the sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) ecosystem, including millions of acres of potential habitat across the West. Habitat maps derived from empirical data are needed given impending listing decisions that will affect both sage-grouse population dynamics and human land-use restrictions. This report presents the process for developing spatially explicit maps describing relative habitat suitability for sage-grouse in Nevada and northeastern California. Maps depicting habitat suitability indices (HSI) values were generated based on model-averaged resource selection functions informed by more than 31,000 independent telemetry locations from more than 1,500 radio-marked sage-grouse across 12 project areas in Nevada and northeastern California collected during a 15-year period (1998–2013). Modeled habitat covariates included land cover composition, water resources, habitat configuration, elevation, and topography, each at multiple spatial scales that were relevant to empirically observed sage-grouse movement patterns. We then present an example of how the HSI can be delineated into categories. Specifically, we demonstrate that the deviation from the mean can be used to classify habitat suitability into three categories of habitat quality (high, moderate, and low) and one non-habitat category. The classification resulted in an agreement of 93–97 percent for habitat versus non-habitat across a suite of independent validation datasets. Lastly, we provide an example of how space use models can be integrated with habitat models to help inform conservation planning. In this example, we combined probabilistic breeding density with a non-linear probability of occurrence relative to distance to nearest lek (traditional breeding ground) using count data to calculate a composite space use index (SUI). The SUI was then classified into two categories of use

  9. A hierarchical integrated population model for greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) in the Bi-State Distinct Population Segment, California and Nevada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coates, Peter S.; Halstead, Brian J.; Blomberg, Erik J.; Brussee, Brianne; Howe, Kristy B.; Wiechman, Lief; Tebbenkamp, Joel; Reese, Kerry P.; Gardner, Scott C.; Casazza, Michael L.

    2014-01-01

    Greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus, hereafter referred to as “sage-grouse”) are endemic to sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) ecosystems throughout Western North America. Populations of sage-grouse have declined in distribution and abundance across the range of the species (Schroeder and others, 2004; Knick and Connelly, 2011), largely as a result of human disruption of sagebrush communities (Knick and Connelly, 2011). The Bi-State Distinct Population Segment (DPS) represents sage-grouse populations that are geographically isolated and genetically distinct (Benedict and others, 2003; Oyler-McCance and others, 2005) and that are present at the extreme southwestern distribution of the sage-grouse range (Schroeder and others, 2004), straddling the border of California and Nevada. Subpopulations of sage-grouse in the DPS may be at increased risk of extirpation because of a substantial loss of sagebrush habitat and lack of connectivity (Oyler-McCance and others, 2005). Sage-grouse in the Bi-State DPS represent small, localized breeding populations distributed across 18,325 km2. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service currently (2014) is evaluating the Bi-State DPS as threatened or endangered under the Endangered Species Act of 1973, independent of other sage-grouse populations. This DPS was designated as a higher priority for listing than sage-grouse in other parts of the species’ range (U.S. Department of the Interior, 2010). Range-wide population analyses for sage-grouse have included portions of the Bi-State DPS (Sage and Columbian Sharp-tailed Grouse Technical Committee 2008; Garton and others, 2011). Although these analyses are informative, the underlying data only represent a portion of the DPS and are comprised of lek count observations only. A thorough examination of population dynamics and persistence that includes multiple subpopulations and represents the majority of the DPS is largely lacking. Furthermore, fundamental information on population growth

  10. Hierarchical population monitoring of greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) in Nevada and California—Identifying populations for management at the appropriate spatial scale

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coates, Peter S.; Prochazka, Brian G.; Ricca, Mark A.; Wann, Gregory T.; Aldridge, Cameron L.; Hanser, Steven E.; Doherty, Kevin E.; O'Donnell, Michael S.; Edmunds, David R.; Espinosa, Shawn P.

    2017-08-10

    Population ecologists have long recognized the importance of ecological scale in understanding processes that guide observed demographic patterns for wildlife species. However, directly incorporating spatial and temporal scale into monitoring strategies that detect whether trajectories are driven by local or regional factors is challenging and rarely implemented. Identifying the appropriate scale is critical to the development of management actions that can attenuate or reverse population declines. We describe a novel example of a monitoring framework for estimating annual rates of population change for greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) within a hierarchical and spatially nested structure. Specifically, we conducted Bayesian analyses on a 17-year dataset (2000–2016) of lek counts in Nevada and northeastern California to estimate annual rates of population change, and compared trends across nested spatial scales. We identified leks and larger scale populations in immediate need of management, based on the occurrence of two criteria: (1) crossing of a destabilizing threshold designed to identify significant rates of population decline at a particular nested scale; and (2) crossing of decoupling thresholds designed to identify rates of population decline at smaller scales that decouple from rates of population change at a larger spatial scale. This approach establishes how declines affected by local disturbances can be separated from those operating at larger scales (for example, broad-scale wildfire and region-wide drought). Given the threshold output from our analysis, this adaptive management framework can be implemented readily and annually to facilitate responsive and effective actions for sage-grouse populations in the Great Basin. The rules of the framework can also be modified to identify populations responding positively to management action or demonstrating strong resilience to disturbance. Similar hierarchical approaches might be beneficial

  11. Summary of science, activities, programs, and policies that influence the rangewide conservation of Greater Sage-Grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manier, D.J.; Wood, David J.A.; Bowen, Z.H.; Donovan, R.M.; Holloran, M.J.; Juliusson, L.M.; Mayne, K.S.; Oyler-McCance, S.J.; Quamen, F.R.; Saher, D.J.; Titolo, A.J.

    2013-01-01

    The Greater Sage-Grouse, has been observed, hunted, and counted for decades. The sagebrush biome, home to the Greater Sage-Grouse, includes sagebrush-steppe and Great Basin sagebrush communities, interspersed with grasslands, salt flats, badlands, mountain ranges, springs, intermittent creeks and washes, and major river systems, and is one of the most widespread and enigmatic components of Western U.S. landscapes. Over time, habitat conversion, degradation, and fragmentation have accumulated across the entire range such that local conditions as well as habitat distributions at local and regional scales are negatively affecting the long-term persistence of this species. Historic patterns of human use and settlement of the sagebrush ecosystem have contributed to the current condition and status of sage-grouse populations. The accumulation of habitat loss, persistent habitat degradation, and fragmentation by industry and urban infrastructure, as indicated by U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) findings, presents a significant challenge for conservation of this species and sustainable management of the sagebrush ecosystem. Because of the wide variations in natural and human history across these landscapes, no single prescription for management of sagebrush ecosystems (including sage-grouse habitats) will suffice to guide the collective efforts of public and private entities to conserve the species and its habitat. This report documents and summarizes several decades of work on sage-grouse populations, sagebrush as habitat, and sagebrush community and ecosystem functions based on the recent assessment and findings of the USFWS under consideration of the Endangered Species Act. As reflected here, some of these topics receive a greater depth of discussion because of the perceived importance of the issue for sagebrush ecosystems and sage-grouse populations. Drawing connections between the direct effects on sagebrush ecosystems and the effect of ecosystem condition on

  12. Differential influences of local subpopulations on regional diversity and differentiation for greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Row, Jeffery R.; Oyler-McCance, Sara J.; Fedy, Brad C.

    2016-01-01

    The distribution of spatial genetic variation across a region can shape evolutionary dynamics and impact population persistence. Local population dynamics and among-population dispersal rates are strong drivers of this spatial genetic variation, yet for many species we lack a clear understanding of how these population processes interact in space to shape within-species genetic variation. Here, we used extensive genetic and demographic data from 10 subpopulations of greater sage-grouse to parameterize a simulated approximate Bayesian computation (ABC) model and (i) test for regional differences in population density and dispersal rates for greater sage-grouse subpopulations in Wyoming, and (ii) quantify how these differences impact subpopulation regional influence on genetic variation. We found a close match between observed and simulated data under our parameterized model and strong variation in density and dispersal rates across Wyoming. Sensitivity analyses suggested that changes in dispersal (via landscape resistance) had a greater influence on regional differentiation, whereas changes in density had a greater influence on mean diversity across all subpopulations. Local subpopulations, however, varied in their regional influence on genetic variation. Decreases in the size and dispersal rates of central populations with low overall and net immigration (i.e. population sources) had the greatest negative impact on genetic variation. Overall, our results provide insight into the interactions among demography, dispersal and genetic variation and highlight the potential of ABC to disentangle the complexity of regional population dynamics and project the genetic impact of changing conditions.

  13. Monitoring and research on the Bi-State Distinct Population Segment of greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) in the Pine Nut Mountains, California and Nevada—Study progress report, 2011–15

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coates, Peter S.; Andrle, Katie M.; Ziegler, Pilar T.; Casazza, Michael L.

    2016-09-29

    The Bi-State distinct population segment (DPS) of greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) that occurs along the Nevada–California border was proposed for listing as threatened under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) in October 2013. However, in April 2015, the FWS determined that the Bi-State DPS no longer required protection under the ESA and withdrew the proposed rule to list the Bi-State DPS (U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 2015). The Bi-State DPS occupies portions of Alpine, Mono, and Inyo Counties in California, and Douglas, Esmeralda, Lyon, Carson City, and Mineral Counties in Nevada. Unique threats facing this population include geographic isolation, expansion of single-leaf pinyon (Pinus monophylla) and Utah juniper (Juniperus osteosperma), anthropogenic activities, and recent changes in predator communities. Estimating population vital rates, identifying seasonal habitat, quantifying threats, and identifying movement patterns are important first steps in developing effective sage-grouse management and conservation plans. During 2011–15, we radio- and Global Positioning System (GPS)-marked (2012–14 only) 44, 47, 17, 9, and 3 sage-grouse, respectively, for a total of 120, in the Pine Nut Mountains Population Management Unit (PMU). No change in lek attendance was detected at Mill Canyon (maximum=18 males) between 2011 and 2012; however, 1 male was observed in 2014 and no males were observed in 2013 and 2015. Males were observed near Bald Mountain in 2013, making it the first year this lek was observed to be active during the study period. Males were observed at a new site in the Buckskin Range in 2014 during trapping efforts and again observed during surveys in 2015. Findings indicate that pinyon-juniper is avoided by sage-grouse during every life stage. Nesting females selected increased sagebrush cover, sagebrush height, and understory horizontal cover, and brood-rearing females selected similar areas

  14. Spatially explicit modeling of annual and seasonal habitat for greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) in Nevada and Northeastern California—An updated decision-support tool for management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coates, Peter S.; Casazza, Michael L.; Brussee, Brianne E.; Ricca, Mark A.; Gustafson, K. Benjamin; Sanchez-Chopitea, Erika; Mauch, Kimberly; Niell, Lara; Gardner, Scott; Espinosa, Shawn; Delehanty, David J.

    2016-05-20

    Successful adaptive management hinges largely upon integrating new and improved sources of information as they become available. As a timely example of this tenet, we updated a management decision support tool that was previously developed for greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus, hereinafter referred to as “sage-grouse”) populations in Nevada and California. Specifically, recently developed spatially explicit habitat maps derived from empirical data played a key role in the conservation of this species facing listing under the Endangered Species Act. This report provides an updated process for mapping relative habitat suitability and management categories for sage-grouse in Nevada and northeastern California (Coates and others, 2014, 2016). These updates include: (1) adding radio and GPS telemetry locations from sage-grouse monitored at multiple sites during 2014 to the original location dataset beginning in 1998; (2) integrating output from high resolution maps (1–2 m2) of sagebrush and pinyon-juniper cover as covariates in resource selection models; (3) modifying the spatial extent of the analyses to match newly available vegetation layers; (4) explicit modeling of relative habitat suitability during three seasons (spring, summer, winter) that corresponded to critical life history periods for sage-grouse (breeding, brood-rearing, over-wintering); (5) accounting for differences in habitat availability between more mesic sagebrush steppe communities in the northern part of the study area and drier Great Basin sagebrush in more southerly regions by categorizing continuous region-wide surfaces of habitat suitability index (HSI) with independent locations falling within two hydrological zones; (6) integrating the three seasonal maps into a composite map of annual relative habitat suitability; (7) deriving updated land management categories based on previously determined cut-points for intersections of habitat suitability and an updated index of sage-grouse

  15. Daily nest survival rates of Gunnison Sage-Grouse (Centrocercus minimus): assessing local- and landscape-scale drivers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stanley, Thomas R.; Aldridge, Cameron L.; Joanne Saher,; Theresa Childers,

    2015-01-01

    The Gunnison Sage-Grouse (Centrocercus minimus) is a species of conservation concern and is a candidate for listing under the U.S. Endangered Species Act because of substantial declines in populations from historic levels. It is thought that loss, fragmentation, and deterioration of sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) habitat have contributed to the decline and isolation of this species into seven geographically distinct subpopulations. Nest survival is known to be a primary driver of demography of Greater Sage-Grouse (C. urophasianus), but no unbiased estimates of daily nest survival rates (hereafter nest survival) exist for Gunnison Sage-Grouse or published studies identifying factors that influence nest survival. We estimated nest survival of Gunnison Sage-Grouse for the western portion of Colorado's Gunnison Basin subpopulation, and assessed the effects and relative importance of local- and landscape-scale habitat characteristics on nest survival. Our top performing model was one that allowed variation in nest survival among areas, suggesting a larger landscape-area effect. Overall nest success during a 38-day nesting period (egg-laying plus incubation) was 50% (daily survival rate; SE  =  0.982 [0.003]), which is higher than previous estimates for Gunnison Sage-Grouse and generally higher than published for the closely related Greater Sage-Grouse. We did not find strong evidence that local-scale habitat variables were better predictors of nest survival than landscape-scale predictors, nor did we find strong evidence that any of the habitat variables we measured were good predictors of nest survival. Nest success of Gunnison Sage-Grouse in the western portion of the Gunnison Basin was higher than previously believed.

  16. Sage grouse

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zimmerman, Shawna; Timmer, Jennifer M.; Aldridge, Cameron L.; Oyler-McCance, Sara J.; Braun, Clait E.; Young, Jessica R.

    2017-01-01

    Sage grouse are a group of chicken-sized birds with a unique breeding behavior and dependence on sagebrush shrubs (genus Artemisia) for food and shelter throughout their life cycle. In the last century, human population expansion throughout western North America has reduced the amount of sagebrush and degraded and fragmented the remaining areas. Vanishing sagebrush has resulted in sage grouse (genus Centrocercus) population declines and elevated conservation concern. Western Colorado is home to both species of sage grouse: greater sage grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) and Gunnison sage grouse (Centrocercus minimus). Populations in the state, and throughout their range, have declined sufficiently to warrant consideration for federal protection for both species under the Endangered Species Act.

  17. Nesting success and resource selection of Greater Sage-Grouse [chapter 8

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nicholas W. Kaczor; Kent C. Jensen; Robert W. Klaver; Mark A. Rumble; Katie M. Herman-Brunson; Christopher C. Swanson

    2011-01-01

    Declines of Greater Sage-Grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) in South Dakota are a concern because further population declines may lead to isolation from populations in Wyoming and Montana. Furthermore, little information exists about reproductive ecology and resource selection of sage grouse on the eastern edge of their distribution. We investigated Greater Sage-Grouse...

  18. Lek ecology of male greater sage-grouse in Carbon County, Wyoming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aleshia Lynn Fremgen

    2014-01-01

    Greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus, hereafter "sage-grouse") have experienced range-wide population declines for several decades, and as a result they were considered warranted for listing under the Endangered Species Act in 2010. Therefore, wildlife managers need to understand how sage-grouse breeding behavior influences long-term reproductive...

  19. Resource selection during brood-rearing by Greater Sage-Grouse [chapter 12

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nicholas W. Kaczor; Katie M. Herman-Brunson; Kent C. Jensen; Mark A. Rumble; Robert W. Klaver; Christopher C. Swanson

    2011-01-01

    Understanding population dynamics and resource selection is crucial in developing wildlife resource management plans for sensitive species such as Greater Sage-Grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus). Little is known about sage grouse habitats on the eastern edge of their range. We investigated resource selection of Greater Sage-Grouse during brood- rearing in North and...

  20. Ecology of greater sage-grouse in the Dakotas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Christopher C. Swanson

    2009-01-01

    Greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) populations and the sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) communities that they rely on have dramatically declined from historic levels. Moreover, information regarding sage-grouse annual life-history requirements at the eastern-most extension of sagebrush steppe communities is lacking....

  1. Microhabitat selection of brood-rearing sites by greater sage-grouse in Carbon County, Wyoming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leslie A. Schreiber; Christopher P. Hansen; Mark A. Rumble; Joshua J. Millspaugh; R. Scott Gamo; Jon W. Kehmeier; Nate Wojcik

    2015-01-01

    Declines in Greater Sage-Grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus, hereafter sage-grouse) populations could be attributed to low chick survival, which may be influenced by the availability of food and cover at sites used by females rearing broods. Habitat attributes important to broods may vary regionally; thus, it is necessary to understand factors affecting...

  2. Greater sage-grouse winter habitat use on the eastern edge of their range

    Science.gov (United States)

    Christopher C. Swanson; Mark A. Rumble; Nicholas W. Kaczor; Robert W. Klaver; Katie M. Herman-Brunson; Jonathan A. Jenks; Kent C. Jensen

    2013-01-01

    Greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) at the western edge of the Dakotas occur in the transition zone between sagebrush and grassland communities. These mixed sagebrush (Artemisia sp.) and grasslands differ from those habitats that comprise the central portions of the sage-grouse range; yet, no information is available on winter habitat selection within this...

  3. Greater sage-grouse apparent nest productivity and chick survival in Carbon County, Wyoming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leslie A. Schreiber; Christopher P. Hansen; Mark A. Rumble; Joshua J. Millspaugh; Frank R. Thompson; R. Scott Gamo; Jon W. Kehmeier; Nate Wojik

    2016-01-01

    Greater sage-grouse Centrocercus urophasianus populations across North America have been declining due to degradation and fragmentation of sagebrush habitat. As part of a study quantifying greater sage-grouse demographics prior to construction of a wind energy facility, we estimated apparent net nest productivity and survival rate of chicks associated with...

  4. Greater sage-grouse: general use and roost site occurrence with pellet counts as a measure of relative abundance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steven E. Hanser; Cameron L. Aldridge; Matthias Leu; Mary M. Rowland; Scott E. Nielsen; Steven T. Knick

    2011-01-01

    Greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) have been declining both spatially and numerically throughout their range because of anthropogenic disturbance and loss and fragmentation of sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) habitats. Understanding how sage-grouse respond to these habitat alterations and disturbances, particularly the...

  5. Empirical validation of landscape resistance models: insights from the Greater Sage-Grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andrew J. Shirk; Michael A. Schroeder; Leslie A. Robb; Samuel A. Cushman

    2015-01-01

    The ability of landscapes to impede species’ movement or gene flow may be quantified by resistance models. Few studies have assessed the performance of resistance models parameterized by expert opinion. In addition, resistance models differ in terms of spatial and thematic resolution as well as their focus on the ecology of a particular species or more generally on the...

  6. USDA Forest Service Sage-Grouse Conservation Science Strategy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deborah Finch; Douglas Boyce; Jeanne Chambers; Chris Colt; Clint McCarthy; Stanley Kitchen; Bryce Richardson; Mary Rowland; Mark Rumble; Michael Schwartz; Monica Tomosy; Michael Wisdom

    2015-01-01

    Numerous federal and state agencies, research institutions and stakeholders have undertaken tremendous conservation and research efforts across 11 States in the western United States to reduce threats to Greater Sage-Grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) and sagebrush (Artemisia spp) habitats. In 2010, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) determined that the Greater...

  7. Characterization of small microsatellite loci for use in non invasive sampling studies of Gunnison Sage-grouse (Centrocercus minimus)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oyler-McCance, Sara J.; St. John, Judy

    2010-01-01

    Primers for 10 microsatellite loci were developed specifically to amplify low quantity and quality DNA for Gunnison Sage-grouse (Centrocercus minimus), a species that has been petitioned for listing under the US Endangered Species Act. In a screen of 20 individuals from the largest population in the Gunnison Basin, Colorado, the 10 loci were found to have levels of variability ranging from two to seven alleles. No loci were found to be linked, although one locus revealed significant departures from Hardy–Weinberg equilibrium. These microsatellite loci will be applicable for population genetic analyses and for use in mark recapture studies that utilize DNA collected non invasively from feathers and fecal pellets, which will ultimately aid in management efforts.

  8. Molecular insights into the biology of Greater Sage-Grouse

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oyler-McCance, Sara J.; Quinn, Thomas W.

    2011-01-01

    Recent research on Greater Sage-Grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) genetics has revealed some important findings. First, multiple paternity in broods is more prevalent than previously thought, and leks do not comprise kin groups. Second, the Greater Sage-Grouse is genetically distinct from the congeneric Gunnison sage-grouse (C. minimus). Third, the Lyon-Mono population in the Mono Basin, spanning the border between Nevada and California, has unique genetic characteristics. Fourth, the previous delineation of western (C. u. phaios) and eastern Greater Sage-Grouse (C. u. urophasianus) is not supported genetically. Fifth, two isolated populations in Washington show indications that genetic diversity has been lost due to population declines and isolation. This chapter examines the use of molecular genetics to understand the biology of Greater Sage-Grouse for the conservation and management of this species and put it into the context of avian ecology based on selected molecular studies.

  9. Multi-species benefits of the proposed North American sage-grouse management plan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clait E. Braun

    2005-01-01

    The population size and distribution of the two species of sage-grouse (Greater – Centrocercus urophasianus and Gunnison – C. minimus) populations have become greatly reduced throughout western North America because of habitat changes. Threats are ongoing to the remaining sagebrush (Artemisia ...

  10. Landscape restoration for greater sage-grouse: implications for multiscale planning and monitoring

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michael J. Wisdom; Mary M. Rowland; Miles A. Hemstrom; Barbara C. Wales

    2005-01-01

    Habitats and populations of greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) have declined throughout western North America in response to a myriad of detrimental land uses. Successful restoration of this species' habitat, therefore, is of keen interest to Federal land agencies who oversee management of most remaining habitat. To illustrate the...

  11. Hierarchical population structure in greater sage-grouse provides insight into management boundary delineation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Todd B. Cross; David E. Naugle; John C. Carlson; Michael K. Schwartz

    2016-01-01

    Understanding population structure is important for guiding ongoing conservation and restoration efforts. The greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) is a species of concern distributed across 1.2 million km2 of western North America. We genotyped 1499 greater sagegrouse from 297 leks across Montana, North Dakota and South Dakota using a 15 locus...

  12. The genetic network of greater sage-grouse: Range-wide identification of keystone hubs of connectivity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Todd B. Cross; Michael K. Schwartz; David E. Naugle; Brad C. Fedy; Jeffrey R. Row; Sara J. Oyler-McCance

    2018-01-01

    Genetic networks can characterize complex genetic relationships among groups of individuals, which can be used to rank nodes most important to the overall connectivity of the system. Ranking allows scarce resources to be guided toward nodes integral to connectivity. The greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) is a species of conservation concern that breeds on...

  13. Forbs: Foundation for restoration of monarch butterflies, other pollinators, and greater sage-grouse in the western United States

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kas Dumroese; Tara Luna; Jeremy Pinto; Thomas D. Landis

    2016-01-01

    Monarch butterflies (Danaus plexippus), other pollinators, and Greater Sage-Grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) are currently the focus of increased conservation efforts. Federal attention on these fauna is encouraging land managers to develop conservation strategies, often without corresponding financial resources. This could foster a myopic approach when...

  14. Quantifying restoration effectiveness using multi-scale habitat models: Implications for sage-grouse in the Great Basin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robert S. Arkle; David S. Pilliod; Steven E. Hanser; Matthew L. Brooks; Jeanne C. Chambers; James B. Grace; Kevin C. Knutson; David A. Pyke; Justin L. Welty; Troy A. Wirth

    2014-01-01

    A recurrent challenge in the conservation of wide-ranging, imperiled species is understanding which habitats to protect and whether we are capable of restoring degraded landscapes. For Greater Sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus), a species of conservation concern in the western United States, we approached this problem by developing multi-scale empirical models of...

  15. Conserving and restoring habitat for Greater Sage-Grouse and other sagebrush-obligate wildlife: The crucial link of forbs and sagebrush diversity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kas Dumroese; Tara Luna; Bryce A. Richardson; Francis F. Kilkenny; Justin B. Runyon

    2015-01-01

    In the western US, Greater Sage-Grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus Bonaparte [Phasianidae]) have become an indicator species of the overall health of the sagebrush (Artemisia L. [Asteraceae]) dominated communities that support a rich diversity of flora and fauna. This species has an integral association with sagebrush, its understory forbs and grasses, and the...

  16. Sage grouse on the Idaho National Environmental Research Park

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Connelly, J.W.; Ball, I.J.

    1983-01-01

    A comprehensive study of sage grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) ecology was conducted on the Idaho National Engineering Laboratory (INEL) site between June 1977 and May 1981. Sage grouse used lawns surrounding INEL facilities for feeding and loafing throughot the summer. Mean summer home range was 406 ha for adult female sage grouse and 94 ha for juveniles. Radionuclide concentrations in grouse summering near a liquid radioactive waste disposal area (N = 29) were significantly higher than those in grouse summering near a solid radioactive waste disposal area (N = 14) or control areas (N = 20). Sage grouse moved from 2 to 83 km during seasonal migration. Fall movements from INEL facilities to winter range were slow and meandering. Spring movements of females from leks to summer range were also slow and meandering but male movements appeared rapid and direct. Sage grouse remained in segregated flocks during early summer but the number of mixed sex flocks increased in late summer. Sage grouse occurred in segregated flocks throughout the winter. Both flock type and habitat influenced winter sage grouse flock size. Mean flock size remained relatively constant as winter weather became more severe. Agricultural aras were an important component of sage grouse summer range and were preferred by all sage grouse sex and age classes. Sage grouse winter range was generally characterized by sagebrush stands with 11 to 30% canopy coverage

  17. Conservation buffer distance estimates for Greater Sage-Grouse: a review

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manier, Daniel J.; Bowen, Zachary H.; Brooks, Matthew L.; Casazza, Michael L.; Coates, Peter S.; Deibert, Patricia A.; Hanser, Steven E.; Johnson, Douglas H.

    2014-01-01

    This report was prepared at the request of the U.S. Department of the Interior and is a compilation and summary of published scientific studies that evaluate the influence of anthropogenic activities and infrastructure on Greater Sage-Grouse(Centrocercus urophasianus; hereafter, sage-grouse) populations. The purpose of this report is to provide a convenient reference for land managers and others who are working to develop biologically relevant and socioeconomically practical buffer distances around sage-grouse habitats. The framework for this summary includes (1) addressing the potential effects of anthropogenic land use and disturbances on sage-grouse populations, (2) providing ecologically based interpretations of evidence from the scientific literature, and (3) informing implementation of conservation buffers around sage-grouse communal breeding locations—known as leks.

  18. Observations of territorial breeding common ravens caching eggs of greater sage-grouse

    Science.gov (United States)

    Howe, Kristy B.; Coates, Peter S.

    2015-01-01

    Previous investigations using continuous video monitoring of greater sage-grouse Centrocercus urophasianus nests have unambiguously identified common ravens Corvus corax as an important egg predator within the western United States. The quantity of greater sage-grouse eggs an individual common raven consumes during the nesting period and the extent to which common ravens actively hunt greater sage-grouse nests are largely unknown. However, some evidence suggests that territorial breeding common ravens, rather than nonbreeding transients, are most likely responsible for nest depredations. We describe greater sage-grouse egg depredation observations obtained opportunistically from three common raven nests located in Idaho and Nevada where depredated greater sage-grouse eggs were found at or in the immediate vicinity of the nest site, including the caching of eggs in nearby rock crevices. We opportunistically monitored these nests by counting and removing depredated eggs and shell fragments from the nest sites during each visit to determine the extent to which the common raven pairs preyed on greater sage-grouse eggs. To our knowledge, our observations represent the first evidence that breeding, territorial pairs of common ravens cache greater sage-grouse eggs and are capable of depredating multiple greater sage-grouse nests.

  19. Sage-grouse habitat selection during winter in Alberta

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carpenter, Jennifer L.; Aldridge, Cameron L.; Boyce, Mark S.

    2010-01-01

    Greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) are dependent on sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) for food and shelter during winter, yet few studies have assessed winter habitat selection, particularly at scales applicable to conservation planning. Small changes to availability of winter habitats have caused drastic reductions in some sage-grouse populations. We modeled winter habitat selection by sage-grouse in Alberta, Canada, by using a resource selection function. Our purpose was to 1) generate a robust winter habitat-selection model for Alberta sage-grouse; 2) spatially depict habitat suitability in a Geographic Information System to identify areas with a high probability of selection and thus, conservation importance; and 3) assess the relative influence of human development, including oil and gas wells, in landscape models of winter habitat selection. Terrain and vegetation characteristics, sagebrush cover, anthropogenic landscape features, and energy development were important in top Akaike's Information Criterionselected models. During winter, sage-grouse selected dense sagebrush cover and homogenous less rugged areas, and avoided energy development and 2-track truck trails. Sage-grouse avoidance of energy development highlights the need for comprehensive management strategies that maintain suitable habitats across all seasons. ?? 2010 The Wildlife Society.

  20. Preliminary analysis of Greater Sage-grouse reproduction in the Virginia Mountains of northwestern Nevada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coates, Peter S.; Lockyer, Zachary B.; Farinha, Melissa A.; Sweeney, Joelle M.; Johnson, Valerie M.; Meshriy, Matthew G.; Espinosa, Shawn P.; Delehanty, David J.; Casazza, Michael L.

    2011-01-01

    Relationships between habitat selection and population vital rates of greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus; hereafter sage-grouse), recently designated as a candidate species under the Endangered Species Act, within the Great Basin are not well-understood. The growing development of renewable energy infrastructure within areas inhabited by sage-grouse is thought to influence predator and vegetation communities. For example, common ravens (Corvus corax), a synanthropic sage-grouse nest predator, are increasing range-wide and select transmission lines and other tall structures for nesting and perching. In the Virginia Mountains of northwestern Nevada, we collected preliminary information of space-use, habitat selection, and population vital rates during the nesting and brood-rearing period over two years on 56 sage-grouse. Additionally, videography at nest sites (n = 22) was used to identify sage-grouse nest predators. The study area is a potential site for renewable energy developments (i.e., wind and solar), and we plan to continue monitoring this population using a before-after-control-impact study design. The results reported here are preliminary and further data are required before conclusions can be drawn from this population of sage-grouse.

  1. Conservation of greater sage-grouse- a synthesis of current trends and future management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Connelly, John W.; Knick, Steven T.; Braun, Clait E.; Baker, William L.; Beever, Erik A.; Christiansen, Thomas J.; Doherty, Kevin E.; Garton, Edward O.; Hagen, Christian A.; Hanser, Steven E.; Johnson, Douglas H.; Leu, Matthias; Miller, Richard F.; Naugle, David E.; Oyler-McCance, Sara J.; Pyke, David A.; Reese, Kerry P.; Schroeder, Michael A.; Stiver, San J.; Walker, Brett L.; Wisdorn, Michael J.

    2011-01-01

    Recent analyses of Greater Sage-Grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) populations indicate substantial declines in many areas but relatively stable populations in other portions of the species? range. Sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) habitats neces-sary to support sage-grouse are being burned by large wildfires, invaded by nonnative plants, and developed for energy resources (gas, oil, and wind). Management on public lands, which con-tain 70% of sagebrush habitats, has changed over the last 30 years from large sagebrush control projects directed at enhancing livestock grazing to a greater emphasis on projects that often attempt to improve or restore ecological integrity. Never-theless, the mandate to manage public lands to provide traditional consumptive uses as well as recreation and wilderness values is not likely to change in the near future. Consequently, demand and use of resources contained in sagebrush land-scapes plus the associated infrastructure to sup-port increasing human populations in the western United States will continue to challenge efforts to conserve Greater Sage-Grouse. The continued widespread distribution of sage-grouse, albeit at very low densities in some areas, coupled with large areas of important sagebrush habitat that are relatively unaffected by the human footprint, sug-gest that Greater Sage-Grouse populations may be able to persist into the future. We summarize the status of sage-grouse populations and habitats, provide a synthesis of major threats and chal-lenges to conservation of sage-grouse, and suggest a roadmap to attaining conservation goals.

  2. Utilizing hunter harvest effort to survey for wildlife disease: a case study of West Nile virus in greater sage-grouse

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dusek, Robert J.; Hagen, Christian A.; Franson, J. Christian; Budeau, David A.; Hofmeister, Erik K.

    2014-01-01

    Greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus; sage-grouse) are highly susceptible to infection with West Nile virus (WNV), with substantial mortality reported in wild populations and in experimentally infected birds. Although sage-grouse are hunted throughout much of their range, they have also recently been considered for protection under the Endangered Species Act. We used blood samples collected on filter-paper strips during the 2006–2010 Oregon, USA, annual sage-grouse hunt to survey for specific WNV-neutralizing antibodies that indicate a previous infection with WNV. During this period, hunters submitted 1,880 blood samples from sage-grouse they harvested. Samples obtained were proportional for all 12 Oregon sage-grouse hunting units. Laboratory testing of 1,839 samples by the WNV epitope-blocking enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (bELISA) followed by plaque reduction neutralization test on bELISA-positive samples yielded 19 (1%) and 1 (0.05%) positive samples, respectively. These data provided early baseline information for future comparisons regarding the prevalence of WNV-specific neutralizing antibodies in sage-grouse in Oregon. This methodology may provide other states where sage-grouse (or other species) populations are hunted and where WNV constitutes a species conservation concern with a viable option to track the relative prevalence of the virus in populations.

  3. Better living through conifer removal: A demographic analysis of sage-grouse vital rates.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John P Severson

    Full Text Available Sagebrush (Artemisia spp. obligate wildlife species such as the imperiled greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus face numerous threats including altered ecosystem processes that have led to conifer expansion into shrub-steppe. Conifer removal is accelerating despite a lack of empirical evidence on grouse population response. Using a before-after-control-impact design at the landscape scale, we evaluated effects of conifer removal on two important demographic parameters, annual survival of females and nest survival, by monitoring 219 female sage-grouse and 225 nests in the northern Great Basin from 2010 to 2014. Estimates from the best treatment models showed positive trends in the treatment area relative to the control area resulting in an increase of 6.6% annual female survival and 18.8% nest survival relative to the control area by 2014. Using stochastic simulations of our estimates and published demographics, we estimated a 25% increase in the population growth rate in the treatment area relative to the control area. This is the first study to link sage-grouse demographics with conifer removal and supports recommendations to actively manage conifer expansion for sage-grouse conservation. Sage-grouse have become a primary catalyst for conservation funding to address conifer expansion in the West, and these findings have important implications for other ecosystem services being generated on the wings of species conservation.

  4. Investigating impacts of oil and gas development on greater sage-grouse

    Science.gov (United States)

    Green, Adam; Aldridge, Cameron L.; O'Donnell, Michael

    2017-01-01

    The sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) ecosystem is one of the largest ecosystems in western North America providing habitat for species found nowhere else. Sagebrush habitats have experienced dramatic declines since the 1950s, mostly due to anthropogenic disturbances. The greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) is a sagebrush-obligate species that has experienced population declines over the last several decades, which are attributed to a variety of disturbances including the more recent threat of oil and gas development. We developed a hierarchical, Bayesian state-space model to investigate the impacts of 2 measures of oil and gas development, and environmental and habitat conditions, on sage-grouse populations in Wyoming, USA using male lek counts from 1984 to 2008. Lek attendance of male sage-grouse declined by approximately 2.5%/year and was negatively related to oil and gas well density. We found little support for the influence of sagebrush cover and precipitation on changes in lek counts. Our results support those of other studies reporting negative impacts of oil and gas development on sage-grouse populations and our modeling approach allowed us to make inference to a longer time scale and larger spatial extent than in previous studies. In addition to sage-grouse, development may also negatively affect other sagebrush-obligate species, and active management of sagebrush habitats may be necessary to maintain some species. 

  5. Patterns in Greater Sage-grouse population dynamics correspond with public grazing records at broad scales.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Monroe, Adrian P; Aldridge, Cameron L; Assal, Timothy J; Veblen, Kari E; Pyke, David A; Casazza, Michael L

    2017-06-01

    Human land use, such as livestock grazing, can have profound yet varied effects on wildlife interacting within common ecosystems, yet our understanding of land-use effects is often generalized from short-term, local studies that may not correspond with trends at broader scales. Here we used public land records to characterize livestock grazing across Wyoming, USA, and we used Greater Sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) as a model organism to evaluate responses to livestock management. With annual counts of male Sage-grouse from 743 leks (breeding display sites) during 2004-2014, we modeled population trends in response to grazing level (represented by a relative grazing index) and timing across a gradient in vegetation productivity as measured by the Normalized Vegetation Difference Index (NDVI). We found grazing can have both positive and negative effects on Sage-grouse populations depending on the timing and level of grazing. Sage-grouse populations responded positively to higher grazing levels after peak vegetation productivity, but populations declined when similar grazing levels occurred earlier, likely reflecting the sensitivity of cool-season grasses to grazing during peak growth periods. We also found support for the hypothesis that effects of grazing management vary with local vegetation productivity. These results illustrate the importance of broad-scale analyses by revealing patterns in Sage-grouse population trends that may not be inferred from studies at finer scales, and could inform sustainable grazing management in these ecosystems. © 2017 by the Ecological Society of America.

  6. Greater sage-grouse nest predators in the Virginia Mountains of northwestern Nevada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lockyer, Zachary B.; Coates, Peter S.; Casazza, Michael L.; Espinosa, Shawn; Delehanty, David J.

    2013-01-01

    Greater sage-grouse Centrocercus urophasianus, hereafter sage-grouse, populations have declined across their range due to the loss, degradation, and fragmentation of habitat. Habitat alterations can lead not only to vegetative changes but also to shifts in animal behavior and predator composition that may influence population vital rates, such as nest success. For example, common ravens Corvus corax are sage-grouse nest predators, and common raven abundance is positively associated with human-caused habitat alterations. Because nest success is a central component to sage-grouse population persistence, research that identifies factors influencing nest success will better inform conservation efforts. We used videography to unequivocally identify sage-grouse nest predators within the Virginia Mountains of northwestern Nevada, USA, from 2009 to 2011 and used maximum likelihood to calculate daily probability of nest survival. In the Virginia Mountains, fires, energy exploration, and other anthropogenic activities have altered historic sage-grouse habitat. We monitored 71 sage-grouse nests during the study, placing video cameras at 39 nests. Cumulative nest survival for all nests was 22.4% (95% CI, 13.0–33.4%), a survival rate that was significantly lower than other published results for sage-grouse in the Great Basin. Depredation was the primary cause for nest failure in our study (82.5%), and common ravens were the most frequent sage-grouse nest predator, accounting for 46.7% of nest depredations. We also successfully documented a suite of mammalian and reptilian species depredating sage-grouse nests, including some predators never previously confirmed in the literature to be sage-grouse nest predators (i.e., bobcats Lynx rufus and long-tailed weasels Mephitis frenata). Within the high elevation, disturbed habitat of the Virginia Mountains, low sage-grouse nest success may be limiting sage-grouse population growth. These results suggest that management actions that

  7. Importance of regional variation in conservation planning: A rangewide example of the Greater Sage-Grouse

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doherty, Kevin E.; Evans, Jeffrey S.; Coates, Peter S.; Juliusson, Lara; Fedy, Bradley C.

    2016-01-01

    We developed rangewide population and habitat models for Greater Sage-Grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) that account for regional variation in habitat selection and relative densities of birds for use in conservation planning and risk assessments. We developed a probabilistic model of occupied breeding habitat by statistically linking habitat characteristics within 4 miles of an occupied lek using a nonlinear machine learning technique (Random Forests). Habitat characteristics used were quantified in GIS and represent standard abiotic and biotic variables related to sage-grouse biology. Statistical model fit was high (mean correctly classified = 82.0%, range = 75.4–88.0%) as were cross-validation statistics (mean = 80.9%, range = 75.1–85.8%). We also developed a spatially explicit model to quantify the relative density of breeding birds across each Greater Sage-Grouse management zone. The models demonstrate distinct clustering of relative abundance of sage-grouse populations across all management zones. On average, approximately half of the breeding population is predicted to be within 10% of the occupied range. We also found that 80% of sage-grouse populations were contained in 25–34% of the occupied range within each management zone. Our rangewide population and habitat models account for regional variation in habitat selection and the relative densities of birds, and thus, they can serve as a consistent and common currency to assess how sage-grouse habitat and populations overlap with conservation actions or threats over the entire sage-grouse range. We also quantified differences in functional habitat responses and disturbance thresholds across the Western Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies (WAFWA) management zones using statistical relationships identified during habitat modeling. Even for a species as specialized as Greater Sage-Grouse, our results show that ecological context matters in both the strength of habitat selection (i

  8. U.S. Geological Survey sage-grouse and sagebrush ecosystem research annual report for 2017

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanser, Steven E.

    2017-09-08

    The sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) ecosystem extends across a large portion of the Western United States, and the greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) is one of the iconic species of this ecosystem. Greater sage-grouse populations occur in 11 States and are dependent on relatively large expanses of sagebrush-dominated habitat. Sage-grouse populations have been experiencing long-term declines owing to multiple stressors, including interactions among fire, exotic plant invasions, and human land uses, which have resulted in significant loss, fragmentation, and degradation of landscapes once dominated by sagebrush. In addition to the sage-grouse, over 350 species of plants and animals are dependent on the sagebrush ecosystem.Increasing knowledge about how these species and the sagebrush ecosystem respond to these stressors and to management actions can inform and improve strategies to maintain existing areas of intact sagebrush and restore degraded landscapes. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) has a broad research program focused on providing the science needed to inform these strate-gies and to help land and resource managers at the Federal, State, Tribal, and local levels as they work towards sustainable sage-grouse populations and restored landscapes for the broad range of uses critical to stakeholders in the Western United States.USGS science has provided a foundation for major land and resource management decisions including those that precluded the need to list the greater sage-grouse under the Endangered Species Act. The USGS is continuing to build on that foundation to inform science-based decisions to help support local economies and the continued conservation, management, and restoration of the sagebrush ecosystem.This report contains descriptions of USGS sage-grouse and sagebrush ecosystem research projects that are ongoing or were active during 2017 and is organized into five thematic areas: Fire, Invasive Species, Restoration, Sagebrush and Sage-Grouse

  9. Does Wyoming's Core Area Policy Protect Winter Habitats for Greater Sage-Grouse?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Kurt T.; Beck, Jeffrey L.; Pratt, Aaron C.

    2016-10-01

    Conservation reserves established to protect important habitat for wildlife species are used world-wide as a wildlife conservation measure. Effective reserves must adequately protect year-round habitats to maintain wildlife populations. Wyoming's Sage-Grouse Core Area policy was established to protect breeding habitats for greater sage-grouse ( Centrocercus urophasianus). Protecting only one important seasonal habitat could result in loss or degradation of other important habitats and potential declines in local populations. The purpose of our study was to identify the timing of winter habitat use, the extent which individuals breeding in Core Areas used winter habitats, and develop resource selection functions to assess effectiveness of Core Areas in conserving sage-grouse winter habitats in portions of 5 Core Areas in central and north-central Wyoming during winters 2011-2015. We found that use of winter habitats occured over a longer period than current Core Area winter timing stipulations and a substantial amount of winter habitat outside of Core Areas was used by individuals that bred in Core Areas, particularly in smaller Core Areas. Resource selection functions for each study area indicated that sage-grouse were selecting habitats in response to landscapes dominated by big sagebrush and flatter topography similar to other research on sage-grouse winter habitat selection. The substantial portion of sage-grouse locations and predicted probability of selection during winter outside small Core Areas illustrate that winter requirements for sage-grouse are not adequately met by existing Core Areas. Consequently, further considerations for identifying and managing important winter sage-grouse habitats under Wyoming's Core Area Policy are warranted.

  10. Microhabitat Conditions in Wyoming's Sage-Grouse Core Areas: Effects on Nest Site Selection and Success.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dinkins, Jonathan B; Smith, Kurt T; Beck, Jeffrey L; Kirol, Christopher P; Pratt, Aaron C; Conover, Michael R

    2016-01-01

    The purpose of our study was to identify microhabitat characteristics of greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) nest site selection and survival to determine the quality of sage-grouse habitat in 5 regions of central and southwest Wyoming associated with Wyoming's Core Area Policy. Wyoming's Core Area Policy was enacted in 2008 to reduce human disturbance near the greatest densities of sage-grouse. Our analyses aimed to assess sage-grouse nest selection and success at multiple micro-spatial scales. We obtained microhabitat data from 928 sage-grouse nest locations and 819 random microhabitat locations from 2008-2014. Nest success was estimated from 924 nests with survival data. Sage-grouse selected nests with greater sagebrush cover and height, visual obstruction, and number of small gaps between shrubs (gap size ≥0.5 m and sage-grouse were selecting different nest sites in Core Areas relative to areas outside of Core. The Kaplan-Meier nest success estimate for a 27-day incubation period was 42.0% (95% CI: 38.4-45.9%). Risk of nest failure was negatively associated with greater rock and more medium-sized gaps between shrubs (gap size ≥2.0 m and <3.0 m). Within our study areas, Wyoming's Core Areas did not have differing microhabitat quality compared to outside of Core Areas. The close proximity of our locations within and outside of Core Areas likely explained our lack of finding differences in microhabitat quality among locations within these landscapes. However, the Core Area Policy is most likely to conserve high quality habitat at larger spatial scales, which over decades may have cascading effects on microhabitat quality available between areas within and outside of Core Areas.

  11. Mitigation effectiveness for improving nesting success of greater sage-grouse influenced by energy development

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kirol, Christopher P.; Sutphin, Andrew L.; Bond, Laura S.; Fuller, Mark R.; Maechtle, Thomas L.

    2015-01-01

    Sagebrush Artemisia spp. habitats being developed for oil and gas reserves are inhabited by sagebrush obligate species — including the greater sage-grouse Centrocercus urophasianus (sage-grouse) that is currently being considered for protection under the U.S. Endangered Species Act. Numerous studies suggest increasing oil and gas development may exacerbate species extinction risks. Therefore, there is a great need for effective on-site mitigation to reduce impacts to co-occurring wildlife such as sage-grouse. Nesting success is a primary factor in avian productivity and declines in nesting success are also thought to be an important contributor to population declines in sage-grouse. From 2008 to 2011 we monitored 296 nests of radio-marked female sage-grouse in a natural gas (NG) field in the Powder River Basin, Wyoming, USA, and compared nest survival in mitigated and non-mitigated development areas and relatively unaltered areas to determine if specific mitigation practices were enhancing nest survival. Nest survival was highest in relatively unaltered habitats followed by mitigated, and then non-mitigated NG areas. Reservoirs used for holding NG discharge water had the greatest support as having a direct relationship to nest survival. Within a 5-km2 area surrounding a nest, the probability of nest failure increased by about 15% for every 1.5 km increase in reservoir water edge. Reducing reservoirs was a mitigation focus and sage-grouse nesting in mitigated areas were exposed to almost half of the amount of water edge compared to those in non-mitigated areas. Further, we found that an increase in sagebrush cover was positively related to nest survival. Consequently, mitigation efforts focused on reducing reservoir construction and reducing surface disturbance, especially when the surface disturbance results in sagebrush removal, are important to enhancing sage-grouse nesting success.

  12. Landscape characteristics and livestock presence influence common ravens: Relevance to greater sage-grouse conservation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coates, Peter S.; Brussee, Brianne E.; Howe, Kristy; Gustafson, K. Ben; Casazza, Michael L.; Delehanty, David J.

    2016-01-01

    Common raven (Corvus corax; hereafter, raven) population abundance in the sagebrush steppe of the American West has increased threefold during the previous four decades, largely as a result of unintended resource subsidies from human land-use practices. This is concerning because ravens frequently depredate nests of species of conservation concern, such as greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus; hereafter, sage-grouse). Grazing by livestock in sagebrush ecosystems is common practice on most public lands, but associations between livestock and ravens are poorly understood. The primary objective of this study was to identify the effects of livestock on raven occurrence while accounting for landscape characteristics within human-altered sagebrush steppe habitat, particularly in areas occupied by breeding sage-grouse. Using data from southeastern Idaho collected during spring and summer across 3 yr, we modeled raven occurrence as a function of the presence of livestock while accounting for multiple landscape covariates, including land cover features, topographical features, and proximity to sage-grouse lek sites (breeding grounds), as well as site-level anthropogenic features. While accounting for landscape characteristics, we found that the odds of raven occurrence increased 45.8% in areas where livestock were present. In addition, ravens selected areas near sage-grouse leks, with the odds of occurrence decreasing 8.9% for every 1-km distance, increase away from the lek. We did not find an association between livestock use and distance to lek. We also found that ravens selected sites with relatively lower elevation containing increased amounts of cropland, wet meadow, and urbanization. Limiting raven access to key anthropogenic subsidies and spatially segregating livestock from sage-grouse breeding areas would likely reduce exposure of predatory ravens to sage-grouse nests and chicks.

  13. Modeling ecological minimum requirements for distribution of greater sage-grouse leks: implications for population connectivity across their western range, U.S.A.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knick, Steven T; Hanser, Steven E; Preston, Kristine L

    2013-06-01

    Greater sage-grouse Centrocercus urophasianus (Bonaparte) currently occupy approximately half of their historical distribution across western North America. Sage-grouse are a candidate for endangered species listing due to habitat and population fragmentation coupled with inadequate regulation to control development in critical areas. Conservation planning would benefit from accurate maps delineating required habitats and movement corridors. However, developing a species distribution model that incorporates the diversity of habitats used by sage-grouse across their widespread distribution has statistical and logistical challenges. We first identified the ecological minimums limiting sage-grouse, mapped similarity to the multivariate set of minimums, and delineated connectivity across a 920,000 km(2) region. We partitioned a Mahalanobis D (2) model of habitat use into k separate additive components each representing independent combinations of species-habitat relationships to identify the ecological minimums required by sage-grouse. We constructed the model from abiotic, land cover, and anthropogenic variables measured at leks (breeding) and surrounding areas within 5 km. We evaluated model partitions using a random subset of leks and historic locations and selected D (2) (k = 10) for mapping a habitat similarity index (HSI). Finally, we delineated connectivity by converting the mapped HSI to a resistance surface. Sage-grouse required sagebrush-dominated landscapes containing minimal levels of human land use. Sage-grouse used relatively arid regions characterized by shallow slopes, even terrain, and low amounts of forest, grassland, and agriculture in the surrounding landscape. Most populations were interconnected although several outlying populations were isolated because of distance or lack of habitat corridors for exchange. Land management agencies currently are revising land-use plans and designating critical habitat to conserve sage-grouse and avoid endangered

  14. Modeling ecological minimum requirements for distribution of greater sage-grouse leks: implications for population connectivity across their western range, U.S.A.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knick, Steven T.; Hanser, Steven E.; Preston, Kristine L.

    2013-01-01

    Greater sage-grouse Centrocercus urophasianus (Bonaparte) currently occupy approximately half of their historical distribution across western North America. Sage-grouse are a candidate for endangered species listing due to habitat and population fragmentation coupled with inadequate regulation to control development in critical areas. Conservation planning would benefit from accurate maps delineating required habitats and movement corridors. However, developing a species distribution model that incorporates the diversity of habitats used by sage-grouse across their widespread distribution has statistical and logistical challenges. We first identified the ecological minimums limiting sage-grouse, mapped similarity to the multivariate set of minimums, and delineated connectivity across a 920,000 km2 region. We partitioned a Mahalanobis D2 model of habitat use into k separate additive components each representing independent combinations of species–habitat relationships to identify the ecological minimums required by sage-grouse. We constructed the model from abiotic, land cover, and anthropogenic variables measured at leks (breeding) and surrounding areas within 5 km. We evaluated model partitions using a random subset of leks and historic locations and selected D2 (k = 10) for mapping a habitat similarity index (HSI). Finally, we delineated connectivity by converting the mapped HSI to a resistance surface. Sage-grouse required sagebrush-dominated landscapes containing minimal levels of human land use. Sage-grouse used relatively arid regions characterized by shallow slopes, even terrain, and low amounts of forest, grassland, and agriculture in the surrounding landscape. Most populations were interconnected although several outlying populations were isolated because of distance or lack of habitat corridors for exchange. Land management agencies currently are revising land-use plans and designating critical habitat to conserve sage-grouse and avoid endangered

  15. Phenology largely explains taller grass at successful nests in greater sage-grouse.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Joseph T; Tack, Jason D; Doherty, Kevin E; Allred, Brady W; Maestas, Jeremy D; Berkeley, Lorelle I; Dettenmaier, Seth J; Messmer, Terry A; Naugle, David E

    2018-01-01

    Much interest lies in the identification of manageable habitat variables that affect key vital rates for species of concern. For ground-nesting birds, vegetation surrounding the nest may play an important role in mediating nest success by providing concealment from predators. Height of grasses surrounding the nest is thought to be a driver of nest survival in greater sage-grouse ( Centrocercus urophasianus ; sage-grouse), a species that has experienced widespread population declines throughout their range. However, a growing body of the literature has found that widely used field methods can produce misleading inference on the relationship between grass height and nest success. Specifically, it has been demonstrated that measuring concealment following nest fate (failure or hatch) introduces a temporal bias whereby successful nests are measured later in the season, on average, than failed nests. This sampling bias can produce inference suggesting a positive effect of grass height on nest survival, though the relationship arises due to the confounding effect of plant phenology, not an effect on predation risk. To test the generality of this finding for sage-grouse, we reanalyzed existing datasets comprising >800 sage-grouse nests from three independent studies across the range where there was a positive relationship found between grass height and nest survival, including two using methods now known to be biased. Correcting for phenology produced equivocal relationships between grass height and sage-grouse nest survival. Viewed in total, evidence for a ubiquitous biological effect of grass height on sage-grouse nest success across time and space is lacking. In light of these findings, a reevaluation of land management guidelines emphasizing specific grass height targets to promote nest success may be merited.

  16. Genomic single-nucleotide polymorphisms confirm that Gunnison and Greater sage-grouse are genetically well differentiated and that the Bi-State population is distinct

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oyler-McCance, Sara J.; Cornman, Robert S.; Jones, Kenneth L.; Fike, Jennifer

    2015-01-01

    Sage-grouse are iconic, declining inhabitants of sagebrush habitats in western North America, and their management depends on an understanding of genetic variation across the landscape. Two distinct species of sage-grouse have been recognized, Greater (Centrocercus urophasianus) and Gunnison sage-grouse (C. minimus), based on morphology, behavior, and variation at neutral genetic markers. A parapatric group of Greater Sage-Grouse along the border of California and Nevada ("Bi-State") is also genetically distinct at the same neutral genetic markers, yet not different in behavior or morphology. Because delineating taxonomic boundaries and defining conservation units is often difficult in recently diverged taxa and can be further complicated by highly skewed mating systems, we took advantage of new genomic methods that improve our ability to characterize genetic variation at a much finer resolution. We identified thousands of single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) among Gunnison, Greater, and Bi-State sage-grouse and used them to comprehensively examine levels of genetic diversity and differentiation among these groups. The pairwise multilocus fixation index (FST) was high (0.49) between Gunnison and Greater sage-grouse, and both principal coordinates analysis and model-based clustering grouped samples unequivocally by species. Standing genetic variation was lower within the Gunnison Sage-Grouse. The Bi-State population was also significantly differentiated from Greater Sage-Grouse, albeit more weakly (FST = 0.09), and genetic clustering results were consistent with reduced gene flow with Greater Sage-Grouse. No comparable genetic divisions were found within the Greater Sage-Grouse sample, which spanned the southern half of the range. Thus, we provide much stronger genetic evidence supporting the recognition of Gunnison Sage-Grouse as a distinct species with low genetic diversity. Further, our work confirms that the Bi-State population is differentiated from other

  17. Interspecific nest parasitism by chukar on greater sage-grouse

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fearon, Michelle L.; Coates, Peter S.

    2014-01-01

    Nest parasitism occurs when a female bird lays eggs in the nest of another and the host incubates the eggs and may provide some form of parental care for the offspring (Lyon and Eadie 1991). Precocial birds (e.g., Galliformes and Anseriformes) are typically facultative nest parasites of both their own and other species (Lyon and Eadie 1991). This behavior increases a female’s reproductive success when she parasitizes other nests while simultaneously raising her own offspring. Both interspecific and conspecific nest parasitism have been well documented in several families of the order Galliformes, particularly the Phasianidae (Lyon and Eadie 1991, Geffen and Yom-Tov 2001, Krakauer and Kimball 2009). The Chukar (Alectoris chukar) has been widely introduced as a game bird to western North America from Eurasia and is now well established within the Great Basin from northeastern California east to Utah and north to Idaho and Oregon (Christensen 1996). Over much of this range the Chukar occurs with other phasianids, including the native Greater Sage-Grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus), within sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) steppe (Christensen 1996, Schroeder et al. 1999, Connelly et al. 2000). Chukar typically exploit a broader range of habitats than do sage-grouse, but both species use the same species of sagebrush and other shrubs for nesting cover (Christensen 1996, Schroeder et al. 1999). Chukar are known to parasitize nests of other individuals of their own species (Geffen and Yom-Tov 2001), but we are unaware of reported evidence that Chukar may parasitize nests of sage-grouse. Here we describe a case of a Chukar parasitizing a sage-grouse nest in the sagebrush steppe of western Nevada.

  18. The historical distribution of Gunnison Sage-Grouse in Colorado

    Science.gov (United States)

    Braun, Clait E.; Oyler-McCance, Sara J.; Nehring, Jennifer A.; Commons, Michelle L.; Young, Jessica R.; Potter, Kim M.

    2014-01-01

    The historical distribution of Gunnison Sage-Grouse (Centrocercus minimus) in Colorado is described based on published literature, observations, museum specimens, and the known distribution of sagebrush (Artemisia spp.). Historically, Gunnison Sage-Grouse were widely but patchily distributed in up to 22 counties in south-central and southwestern Colorado. The historical distribution of this species was south of the Colorado-Eagle river drainages primarily west of the Continental Divide. Potential contact areas with Greater Sage-Grouse (C. urophasianus) were along the Colorado-Eagle river system in Mesa, Garfield, and Eagle counties, west of the Continental Divide. Gunnison Sage-Grouse historically occupied habitats that were naturally highly fragmented by forested mountains and plateaus/mesas, intermountain basins without robust species of sagebrush, and river systems. This species adapted to use areas with more deciduous shrubs (i.e., Quercus spp., Amelanchier spp., Prunus spp.) in conjunction with sagebrush. Most areas historically occupied were small, linear, and patchily distributed within the overall landscape matrix. The exception was the large intermountain basin in Gunnison, Hinsdale, and Saguache counties. The documented distribution east of the Continental Divide within the large expanse of the San Luis Valley (Alamosa, Conejos, Costilla, and Rio Grande counties) was minimal and mostly on the eastern, northern, and southern fringes. Many formerly occupied habitat patches were vacant by the mid 1940s with extirpations continuing to the late 1990s. Counties from which populations were recently extirpated include Archuleta and Pitkin (1960s), and Eagle, Garfield, Montezuma, and Ouray (1990s).

  19. Ecology of Greater Sage-Grouse in the Bi-State Planning Area Final Report, September 2007

    Science.gov (United States)

    Casazza, Michael L.; Overton, Cory T.; Farinha, Melissa A.; Torregrosa, Alicia; Fleskes, Joseph P.; Miller, Michael R.; Sedinger, James S.; Kolada, Eric J.

    2009-01-01

    Conservation efforts for greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus), hereafter sage-grouse, are underway across the range of this species. Over 70 local working groups have been established and are implementing on-the-ground sage-grouse oriented conservation projects. Early on in this process, the California Department of Fish and Game (CDFG) recognized the need to join in these efforts and received funding from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) under the Candidate Species Conservation Program to help develop a species conservation plan for sage-grouse in the Mono County area. This conservation plan covers portions of Alpine, Mono, and Inyo counties in California and Douglas, Esmeralda, Lyon, and Mineral counties in Nevada. A concurrent effort underway through the Nevada Governor's Sage-grouse Conservation Team established Local Area Working Groups across Nevada and eastern California. The Mono County populations of sage-grouse were encompassed by the Bi-State Local Planning Area, which was comprised of six population management units (PMUs). The state agencies from California (CDFG) and Nevada (Nevada Department of Wildlife; NDOW) responsible for the management of sage-grouse agreed to utilize the process that had begun with the Nevada Governor's Team in order to develop local plans for conservation planning and implementation. Resources from the USFWS were applied to several objectives in support of the development of the Bi-State Local Area Sage-grouse Conservation Plan through a grant to the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). Objectives included: (1) participate in the development of the Bi-State Conservation Plan, (2) compile and synthesize existing sage-grouse data, (3) document seasonal movements of sage-grouse, (4) identify habitats critical to sage-grouse, (5) determine survival rates and identify causal factors of mortality, (6) determine nest success and brood success of sage-grouse, and (7) identify sage-grouse lek sites. Progress reports

  20. Evaluating lek occupancy of greater sage-grouse in relation to landscape cultivation in the Dakotas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Joe T.; Flake, Lester D.; Higgins, Kenneth F.; Kobriger, Gerald D.; Homer, Collin G.

    2005-01-01

    Greater Sage-Grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) have been declining in many states and provinces of North America, and North and South Dakota hold no exception to these declines. We studied effects of cultivated land on Greater Sage-Grouse lek abandonment in North and South Dakota. Landscape-level data were assessed using satellite imagery within a geographic information system. Comparisons were made of 1972-1976 and 1999-2000 percent cultivated and noncultivated land. These comparisons were made between land uses surrounding active leks versus inactive leks, active leks versus random locations, and abandoned regions versus active regions. The 1999-2000 imagery illustrated that percent cultivated land was greater near abandoned leks (4-km buffers) than near active leks in North Dakota or random sites, but this did not hold true in South Dakota. Comparison of an extensive region of abandoned leks with a region of active leks in North Dakota illustrated a similar increase as well as dispersion of cultivation within the abandoned region. However, 1972-1976 imagery revealed that this relationship between percentage of cultivated land and lek activity in North Dakota has been static over the last 30 years. Thus, if the decline of Greater Sage-Grouse is the result of cultivated land infringements, it occurred prior to 1972 in North Dakota.

  1. Corticosterone metabolite concentrations in greater sage-grouse are positively associated with the presence of cattle grazing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jankowski, M.D.; Russell, Robin E.; Franson, J. Christian; Dusek, Robert J.; Hines, M.K.; Gregg, M.; Hofmeister, Erik K.

    2014-01-01

    The sagebrush biome in the western United States is home to the imperiled greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) and encompasses rangelands used for cattle production. Cattle grazing activities have been implicated in the range-wide decline of the sage-grouse, but no studies have investigated the relationship between the physiological condition of sage-grouse and the presence of grazing cattle. We sampled 329 sage-grouse across four sites (two grazed and two ungrazed) encompassing 13 600 km2 during the spring and late summer–early autumn of 2005 to evaluate whether demographic factors, breeding status, plasma protein levels, and residence in a cattle-grazed habitat were associated with the stress hormone corticosterone. Corticosterone was measured in feces as immunoreactive corticosterone metabolites (ICM). Males captured during the lekking season exhibited higher ICM levels than all others. Prenesting female sage-grouse captured in a grazed site had higher ICM levels than those in ungrazed sites and prenesting female plasma protein levels were negatively correlated with ICM concentrations. With the use of a small-scale spatial model, we identified a positive correlation between cattle pat count and sage-grouse ICM levels. Our model indicated that ICM levels increased by 2.60 ng · g-1 dry feces for every increase in the number of cow pats found in the vicinity. Management practices will benefit from future research regarding the consistency and mechanism(s) responsible for this association and, importantly, how ICM levels and demographic rates are related in this species of conservation concern.

  2. Captive-rearing of Gunnison sage-grouse from egg collection to adulthood to foster proactive conservation and recovery of a conservation-reliant species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Apa, Anthony D; Wiechman, Lief A

    2015-01-01

    Gunnison sage-grouse (Centrocercus minimus) are distributed across southwestern Colorado and southeastern Utah, United States. Their distribution has decreased over the past century and the species has been listed as threatened by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Reduced genetic diversity, small population size, and isolation may affect Gunnison sage-grouse population persistence. Population augmentation can be used to counteract or mitigate these issues, but traditional translocation efforts have yielded mixed, and mostly unsuccessful, results. Captive-rearing is a viable, although much debated, conservation approach to bolster wild conservation-reliant species. Although there have been captive-rearing efforts with greater sage-grouse (C. urophasianus), to date, no information exists about captive-rearing methods for Gunnison sage-grouse. Therefore, we investigated techniques for egg collection, artificial incubation, hatch, and captive-rearing of chicks, juveniles, subadults, and adults for Gunnison sage-grouse. In 2009 we established a captive flock that produced viable eggs. From 2009-2011, we collected and artificially incubated 206 Gunnison sage-grouse eggs from 23 wild and 14 captive females. Our hatchability was 90%. Wild-produced eggs were heavier than captive-produced eggs and lost mass similarly during incubation. We produced 148 chicks in captivity and fed them a variety of food sources (e.g. invertebrates to commercial chow). Bacterial infections were the primary cause of chick mortality, but we successfully reduced the overall mortality rate during the course of our study. Conservationists and managers should consider the utility in developing a captive-rearing program or creating a captive population as part of a proactive conservation effort for the conservation-reliant Gunnison sage-grouse. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  3. Nest-site selection and reproductive success of greater sage-grouse in a fire-affected habitat of northwestern Nevada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lockyer, Zachary B.; Coates, Peter S.; Casazza, Michael L.; Espinosa, Shawn; Delehanty, David J.

    2015-01-01

    Identifying links between micro-habitat selection and wildlife reproduction is imperative to population persistence and recovery. This information is particularly important for landscape species such as greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus; sage-grouse). Although this species has been widely studied, because environmental factors can affect sage-grouse populations, local and regional studies are crucial for developing viable conservation strategies. We studied the habitat-use patterns of 71 radio-marked sage-grouse inhabiting an area affected by wildfire in the Virginia Mountains of northwestern Nevada during 2009–2011 to determine the effect of micro-habitat attributes on reproductive success. We measured standard vegetation parameters at nest and random sites using a multi-scale approach (range = 0.01–15,527 ha). We used an information-theoretic modeling approach to identify environmental factors influencing nest-site selection and survival, and determine whether nest survival was a function of resource selection. Sage-grouse selected micro-sites with greater shrub canopy cover and less cheatgrass (Bromus tectorum) cover than random sites. Total shrub canopy, including sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) and other shrub species, at small spatial scales (0.8 ha and 3.1 ha) was the single contributing selection factor to higher nest survival. These results indicate that reducing the risk of wildfire to maintain important sagebrush habitats could be emphasized in sage-grouse conservation strategies in Nevada. Managers may seek to mitigate the influx of annual grass invasion by preserving large intact sagebrush-dominated stands with a mixture of other shrub species. For this area of Nevada, the results suggest that ≥40% total shrub canopy cover in sage-grouse nesting areas could yield improved reproductive success. 

  4. Range-wide network of priority areas for greater sage-grouse - a design for conserving connected distributions or isolating individual zoos?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crist, Michele R.; Knick, Steven T.; Hanser, Steven E.

    2015-09-08

    The network of areas delineated in 11 Western States for prioritizing management of greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) represents a grand experiment in conservation biology and reserve design. We used centrality metrics from social network theory to gain insights into how this priority area network might function. The network was highly centralized. Twenty of 188 priority areas accounted for 80 percent of the total centrality scores. These priority areas, characterized by large size and a central location in the range-wide distribution, are strongholds for greater sage-grouse populations and also might function as sources. Mid-ranking priority areas may serve as stepping stones because of their location between large central and smaller peripheral priority areas. The current network design and conservation strategy has risks. The contribution of almost one-half (n = 93) of the priority areas combined for less than 1 percent of the cumulative centrality scores for the network. These priority areas individually are likely too small to support viable sage-grouse populations within their boundary. Without habitat corridors to connect small priority areas either to larger priority areas or as a clustered group within the network, their isolation could lead to loss of sage-grouse within these regions of the network. 

  5. Wyoming greater sage-grouse habitat prioritization: A collection of multi-scale seasonal models and geographic information systems land management tools

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Donnell, Michael S.; Aldridge, Cameron L.; Doherty, Kevin E.; Fedy, Bradley C.

    2015-01-01

    With rapidly changing landscape conditions within Wyoming and the potential effects of landscape changes on sage-grouse habitat, land managers and conservation planners, among others, need procedures to assess the location and juxtaposition of important habitats, land-cover, and land-use patterns to balance wildlife requirements with multiple human land uses. Biologists frequently develop habitat-selection studies to identify prioritization efforts for species of conservation concern to increase understanding and help guide habitat-conservation efforts. Recently, the authors undertook a large-scale collaborative effort that developed habitat-selection models for Greater Sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) across large landscapes in Wyoming, USA and for multiple life-stages (nesting, late brood-rearing, and winter). We developed these habitat models using resource selection functions, based upon sage-grouse telemetry data collected for localized studies and within each life-stage. The models allowed us to characterize and spatially predict seasonal sage-grouse habitat use in Wyoming. Due to the quantity of models, the diversity of model predictors (in the form of geographic information system data) produced by analyses, and the variety of potential applications for these data, we present here a resource that complements our published modeling effort, which will further support land managers.

  6. Probability of lek collapse is lower inside sage-grouse Core Areas: Effectiveness of conservation policy for a landscape species.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emma Suzuki Spence

    Full Text Available Greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus occupy sagebrush (Artemisia spp. habitats in 11 western states and 2 Canadian provinces. In September 2015, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced the listing status for sage-grouse had changed from warranted but precluded to not warranted. The primary reason cited for this change of status was that the enactment of new regulatory mechanisms was sufficient to protect sage-grouse populations. One such plan is the 2008, Wyoming Sage Grouse Executive Order (SGEO, enacted by Governor Freudenthal. The SGEO identifies "Core Areas" that are to be protected by keeping them relatively free from further energy development and limiting other forms of anthropogenic disturbances near active sage-grouse leks. Using the Wyoming Game and Fish Department's sage-grouse lek count database and the Wyoming Oil and Gas Conservation Commission database of oil and gas well locations, we investigated the effectiveness of Wyoming's Core Areas, specifically: 1 how well Core Areas encompass the distribution of sage-grouse in Wyoming, 2 whether Core Area leks have a reduced probability of lek collapse, and 3 what, if any, edge effects intensification of oil and gas development adjacent to Core Areas may be having on Core Area populations. Core Areas contained 77% of male sage-grouse attending leks and 64% of active leks. Using Bayesian binomial probability analysis, we found an average 10.9% probability of lek collapse in Core Areas and an average 20.4% probability of lek collapse outside Core Areas. Using linear regression, we found development density outside Core Areas was related to the probability of lek collapse inside Core Areas. Specifically, probability of collapse among leks >4.83 km from inside Core Area boundaries was significantly related to well density within 1.61 km (1-mi and 4.83 km (3-mi outside of Core Area boundaries. Collectively, these data suggest that the Wyoming Core Area Strategy has benefited

  7. Probability of lek collapse is lower inside sage-grouse Core Areas: Effectiveness of conservation policy for a landscape species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spence, Emma Suzuki; Beck, Jeffrey L; Gregory, Andrew J

    2017-01-01

    Greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) occupy sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) habitats in 11 western states and 2 Canadian provinces. In September 2015, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced the listing status for sage-grouse had changed from warranted but precluded to not warranted. The primary reason cited for this change of status was that the enactment of new regulatory mechanisms was sufficient to protect sage-grouse populations. One such plan is the 2008, Wyoming Sage Grouse Executive Order (SGEO), enacted by Governor Freudenthal. The SGEO identifies "Core Areas" that are to be protected by keeping them relatively free from further energy development and limiting other forms of anthropogenic disturbances near active sage-grouse leks. Using the Wyoming Game and Fish Department's sage-grouse lek count database and the Wyoming Oil and Gas Conservation Commission database of oil and gas well locations, we investigated the effectiveness of Wyoming's Core Areas, specifically: 1) how well Core Areas encompass the distribution of sage-grouse in Wyoming, 2) whether Core Area leks have a reduced probability of lek collapse, and 3) what, if any, edge effects intensification of oil and gas development adjacent to Core Areas may be having on Core Area populations. Core Areas contained 77% of male sage-grouse attending leks and 64% of active leks. Using Bayesian binomial probability analysis, we found an average 10.9% probability of lek collapse in Core Areas and an average 20.4% probability of lek collapse outside Core Areas. Using linear regression, we found development density outside Core Areas was related to the probability of lek collapse inside Core Areas. Specifically, probability of collapse among leks >4.83 km from inside Core Area boundaries was significantly related to well density within 1.61 km (1-mi) and 4.83 km (3-mi) outside of Core Area boundaries. Collectively, these data suggest that the Wyoming Core Area Strategy has benefited sage-grouse

  8. Fire patterns in the range of the greater sage-grouse, 1984-2013 — Implications for conservation and management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brooks, Matthew L.; Matchett, John R.; Shinneman, Douglas J.; Coates, Peter S.

    2015-09-10

    Fire ranks among the top three threats to the greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) throughout its range, and among the top two threats in the western part of its range. The national research strategy for this species and the recent U.S. Department of the Interior Secretarial Order 3336 call for science-based threats assessment of fire to inform conservation planning and fire management efforts. The cornerstone of such assessments is a clear understanding of where fires are occurring and what aspects of fire regimes may be shifting outside of their historical range of variation. This report fulfills this need by describing patterns of fire area, fire size, fire rotation, and fire season length and timing from 1984 to 2013 across the range of the greater sage-grouse. This information need is further addressed by evaluating the ecological and management implications of these fire patterns. Analyses are stratified by major vegetation types and the seven greater sage-grouse management zones, delineated regionally as four western and three eastern management zones. Soil temperature and moisture indicators of resilience to fire and resistance to cheatgrass invasion, and the potential for establishment of a grass/fire cycle, are used as unifying concepts in developing fire threat assessments for each analysis strata.

  9. Measuring the effectiveness of conservation: a novel framework to quantify the benefits of sage-grouse conservation policy and easements in Wyoming.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Holly E Copeland

    Full Text Available Increasing energy and housing demands are impacting wildlife populations throughout western North America. Greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus, a species known for its sensitivity to landscape-scale disturbance, inhabits the same low elevation sage-steppe in which much of this development is occurring. Wyoming has committed to maintain sage-grouse populations through conservation easements and policy changes that conserves high bird abundance "core" habitat and encourages development in less sensitive landscapes. In this study, we built new predictive models of oil and gas, wind, and residential development and applied build-out scenarios to simulate future development and measure the efficacy of conservation actions for maintaining sage-grouse populations. Our approach predicts sage-grouse population losses averted through conservation action and quantifies return on investment for different conservation strategies. We estimate that without conservation, sage-grouse populations in Wyoming will decrease under our long-term scenario by 14-29% (95% CI: 4-46%. However, a conservation strategy that includes the "core area" policy and $250 million in targeted easements could reduce these losses to 9-15% (95% CI: 3-32%, cutting anticipated losses by roughly half statewide and nearly two-thirds within sage-grouse core breeding areas. Core area policy is the single most important component, and targeted easements are complementary to the overall strategy. There is considerable uncertainty around the magnitude of our estimates; however, the relative benefit of different conservation scenarios remains comparable because potential biases and assumptions are consistently applied regardless of the strategy. There is early evidence based on a 40% reduction in leased hectares inside core areas that Wyoming policy is reducing potential for future fragmentation inside core areas. Our framework using build-out scenarios to anticipate species declines

  10. Integrating spatially explicit indices of abundance and habitat quality: an applied example for greater sage-grouse management.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coates, Peter S; Casazza, Michael L; Ricca, Mark A; Brussee, Brianne E; Blomberg, Erik J; Gustafson, K Benjamin; Overton, Cory T; Davis, Dawn M; Niell, Lara E; Espinosa, Shawn P; Gardner, Scott C; Delehanty, David J

    2016-02-01

    Predictive species distributional models are a cornerstone of wildlife conservation planning. Constructing such models requires robust underpinning science that integrates formerly disparate data types to achieve effective species management.Greater sage-grouse Centrocercus urophasianus , hereafter 'sage-grouse' populations are declining throughout sagebrush-steppe ecosystems in North America, particularly within the Great Basin, which heightens the need for novel management tools that maximize the use of available information.Herein, we improve upon existing species distribution models by combining information about sage-grouse habitat quality, distribution and abundance from multiple data sources. To measure habitat, we created spatially explicit maps depicting habitat selection indices (HSI) informed by >35 500 independent telemetry locations from >1600 sage-grouse collected over 15 years across much of the Great Basin. These indices were derived from models that accounted for selection at different spatial scales and seasons. A region-wide HSI was calculated using the HSI surfaces modelled for 12 independent subregions and then demarcated into distinct habitat quality classes.We also employed a novel index to describe landscape patterns of sage-grouse abundance and space use (AUI). The AUI is a probabilistic composite of the following: (i) breeding density patterns based on the spatial configuration of breeding leks and associated trends in male attendance; and (ii) year-round patterns of space use indexed by the decreasing probability of use with increasing distance to leks. The continuous AUI surface was then reclassified into two classes representing high and low/no use and abundance. Synthesis and application s. Using the example of sage-grouse, we demonstrate how the joint application of indices of habitat selection, abundance and space use derived from multiple data sources yields a composite map that can guide effective allocation of management

  11. Linking occurrence and fitness to persistence: Habitat-based approach for endangered Greater Sage-Grouse

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aldridge, Cameron L.; Boyce, Mark S.

    2007-01-01

    Detailed empirical models predicting both species occurrence and fitness across a landscape are necessary to understand processes related to population persistence. Failure to consider both occurrence and fitness may result in incorrect assessments of habitat importance leading to inappropriate management strategies. We took a two-stage approach to identifying critical nesting and brood-rearing habitat for the endangered Greater Sage-Grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) in Alberta at a landscape scale. First, we used logistic regression to develop spatial models predicting the relative probability of use (occurrence) for Sage-Grouse nests and broods. Secondly, we used Cox proportional hazards survival models to identify the most risky habitats across the landscape. We combined these two approaches to identify Sage-Grouse habitats that pose minimal risk of failure (source habitats) and attractive sink habitats that pose increased risk (ecological traps). Our models showed that Sage-Grouse select for heterogeneous patches of moderate sagebrush cover (quadratic relationship) and avoid anthropogenic edge habitat for nesting. Nests were more successful in heterogeneous habitats, but nest success was independent of anthropogenic features. Similarly, broods selected heterogeneous high-productivity habitats with sagebrush while avoiding human developments, cultivated cropland, and high densities of oil wells. Chick mortalities tended to occur in proximity to oil and gas developments and along riparian habitats. For nests and broods, respectively, approximately 10% and 5% of the study area was considered source habitat, whereas 19% and 15% of habitat was attractive sink habitat. Limited source habitats appear to be the main reason for poor nest success (39%) and low chick survival (12%). Our habitat models identify areas of protection priority and areas that require immediate management attention to enhance recruitment to secure the viability of this population. This novel

  12. Can reliable sage-grouse lek counts be obtained using aerial infrared technology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gillette, Gifford L.; Coates, Peter S.; Petersen, Steven; Romero, John P.

    2013-01-01

    More effective methods for counting greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) are needed to better assess population trends through enumeration or location of new leks. We describe an aerial infrared technique for conducting sage-grouse lek counts and compare this method with conventional ground-based lek count methods. During the breeding period in 2010 and 2011, we surveyed leks from fixed-winged aircraft using cryogenically cooled mid-wave infrared cameras and surveyed the same leks on the same day from the ground following a standard lek count protocol. We did not detect significant differences in lek counts between surveying techniques. These findings suggest that using a cryogenically cooled mid-wave infrared camera from an aerial platform to conduct lek surveys is an effective alternative technique to conventional ground-based methods, but further research is needed. We discuss multiple advantages to aerial infrared surveys, including counting in remote areas, representing greater spatial variation, and increasing the number of counted leks per season. Aerial infrared lek counts may be a valuable wildlife management tool that releases time and resources for other conservation efforts. Opportunities exist for wildlife professionals to refine and apply aerial infrared techniques to wildlife monitoring programs because of the increasing reliability and affordability of this technology.

  13. Long-term effects of wildfire on greater sage-grouse - integrating population and ecosystem concepts for management in the Great Basin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coates, Peter S.; Ricca, Mark A.; Prochazka, Brian G.; Doherty, Kevin E.; Brooks, Matthew L.; Casazza, Michael L.

    2015-09-10

    Greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus; hereinafter, sage-grouse) are a sagebrush obligate species that has declined concomitantly with the loss and fragmentation of sagebrush ecosystems across most of its geographical range. The species currently is listed as a candidate for federal protection under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). Increasing wildfire frequency and changing climate frequently are identified as two environmental drivers that contribute to the decline of sage-grouse populations, yet few studies have rigorously quantified their effects on sage-grouse populations across broad spatial scales and long time periods. To help inform a threat assessment within the Great Basin for listing sage-grouse in 2015 under the ESA, we conducted an extensive analysis of wildfire and climatic effects on sage-grouse population growth derived from 30 years of lek-count data collected across the hydrographic Great Basin of Western North America. Annual (1984–2013) patterns of wildfire were derived from an extensive dataset of remotely sensed 30-meter imagery and precipitation derived from locally downscaled spatially explicit data. In the sagebrush ecosystem, underlying soil conditions also contribute strongly to variation in resilience to disturbance and resistance to plant community changes (R&R). Thus, we developed predictions from models of post-wildfire recovery and chronic effects of wildfire based on three spatially explicit R&R classes derived from soil moisture and temperature regimes. We found evidence of an interaction between the effects of wildfire (chronically affected burned area within 5 kilometers of a lek) and climatic conditions (spring through fall precipitation) after accounting for a consistent density-dependent effect. Specifically, burned areas near leks nullifies population growth that normally follows years with relatively high precipitation. In models, this effect results in long-term population declines for sage-grouse despite cyclic

  14. Microhabitat Conditions in Wyoming's Sage-Grouse Core Areas: Effects on Nest Site Selection and Success.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jonathan B Dinkins

    Full Text Available The purpose of our study was to identify microhabitat characteristics of greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus nest site selection and survival to determine the quality of sage-grouse habitat in 5 regions of central and southwest Wyoming associated with Wyoming's Core Area Policy. Wyoming's Core Area Policy was enacted in 2008 to reduce human disturbance near the greatest densities of sage-grouse. Our analyses aimed to assess sage-grouse nest selection and success at multiple micro-spatial scales. We obtained microhabitat data from 928 sage-grouse nest locations and 819 random microhabitat locations from 2008-2014. Nest success was estimated from 924 nests with survival data. Sage-grouse selected nests with greater sagebrush cover and height, visual obstruction, and number of small gaps between shrubs (gap size ≥0.5 m and <1.0 m, while selecting for less bare ground and rock. With the exception of more small gaps between shrubs, we did not find any differences in availability of these microhabitat characteristics between locations within and outside of Core Areas. In addition, we found little supporting evidence that sage-grouse were selecting different nest sites in Core Areas relative to areas outside of Core. The Kaplan-Meier nest success estimate for a 27-day incubation period was 42.0% (95% CI: 38.4-45.9%. Risk of nest failure was negatively associated with greater rock and more medium-sized gaps between shrubs (gap size ≥2.0 m and <3.0 m. Within our study areas, Wyoming's Core Areas did not have differing microhabitat quality compared to outside of Core Areas. The close proximity of our locations within and outside of Core Areas likely explained our lack of finding differences in microhabitat quality among locations within these landscapes. However, the Core Area Policy is most likely to conserve high quality habitat at larger spatial scales, which over decades may have cascading effects on microhabitat quality available

  15. Sagebrush, greater sage-grouse, and the occurrence and importance of forbs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pennington, Victoria E.; Schlaepfer, Daniel R.; Beck, Jeffrey L.; Bradford, John B.; Palmquist, Kyle A.; Lauenroth, William K.

    2016-01-01

    Big sagebrush (Artemisia tridentata Nutt.) ecosystems provide habitat for sagebrush-obligate wildlife species such as the Greater Sage-Grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus). The understory of big sagebrush plant communities is composed of grasses and forbs that are important sources of cover and food for wildlife. The grass component is well described in the literature, but the composition, abundance, and habitat role of forbs in these communities is largely unknown. Our objective was to synthesize information about forbs and their importance to Greater Sage-Grouse diets and habitats, how rangeland management practices affect forbs, and how forbs respond to changes in temperature and precipitation. We also sought to identify research gaps and needs concerning forbs in big sagebrush plant communities. We searched for relevant literature including journal articles and state and federal agency reports. Our results indicated that in the spring and summer, Greater Sage-Grouse diets consist of forbs (particularly species in the Asteraceae family), arthropods, and lesser amounts of sagebrush. The diets transition to sagebrush in fall and winter. Forbs provide cover for Greater Sage-Grouse individuals at their lekking, nesting, and brood-rearing sites, and the species has a positive relationship with arthropod presence. The effect of grazing on native forbs may be compounded by invasion of nonnative species and differs depending on grazing intensity. The effect of fire on forbs varies greatly and may depend on time elapsed since burning. In addition, chemical and mechanical treatments affect annual and perennial forbs differently. Temperature and precipitation influence forb phenology, biomass, and abundance differently among species. Our review identified several uncertainties and research needs about forbs in big sagebrush ecosystems. First, in many cases the literature about forbs is reported only at the genus or functional type level. Second, information about forb

  16. Integrating spatially explicit indices of abundance and habitat quality: an applied example for greater sage-grouse management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coates, Peter S.; Casazza, Michael L.; Ricca, Mark A.; Brussee, Brianne E.; Blomberg, Erik J.; Gustafson, K. Benjamin; Overton, Cory T.; Davis, Dawn M.; Niell, Lara E.; Espinosa, Shawn P.; Gardner, Scott C.; Delehanty, David J.

    2016-01-01

    Predictive species distributional models are a cornerstone of wildlife conservation planning. Constructing such models requires robust underpinning science that integrates formerly disparate data types to achieve effective species management. Greater sage-grouse Centrocercus urophasianus, hereafter “sage-grouse” populations are declining throughout sagebrush-steppe ecosystems in North America, particularly within the Great Basin, which heightens the need for novel management tools that maximize use of available information. Herein, we improve upon existing species distribution models by combining information about sage-grouse habitat quality, distribution, and abundance from multiple data sources. To measure habitat, we created spatially explicit maps depicting habitat selection indices (HSI) informed by > 35 500 independent telemetry locations from > 1600 sage-grouse collected over 15 years across much of the Great Basin. These indices were derived from models that accounted for selection at different spatial scales and seasons. A region-wide HSI was calculated using the HSI surfaces modelled for 12 independent subregions and then demarcated into distinct habitat quality classes. We also employed a novel index to describe landscape patterns of sage-grouse abundance and space use (AUI). The AUI is a probabilistic composite of: (i) breeding density patterns based on the spatial configuration of breeding leks and associated trends in male attendance; and (ii) year-round patterns of space use indexed by the decreasing probability of use with increasing distance to leks. The continuous AUI surface was then reclassified into two classes representing high and low/no use and abundance. Synthesis and applications. Using the example of sage-grouse, we demonstrate how the joint application of indices of habitat selection, abundance, and space use derived from multiple data sources yields a composite map that can guide effective allocation of management intensity across

  17. Evaluating greater sage-grouse seasonal space use relative to leks: Implications for surface use designations in sagebrush ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Casazza, Michael L.; Coates, Peter S.

    2013-01-01

    The development of anthropogenic structures, especially those related to energy resources, in sagebrush ecosystems is an important concern among developers, conservationists, and land managers in relation to greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus; hereafter, sage-grouse) populations. Sage-grouse are dependent on sagebrush ecosystems to meet their seasonal life-phase requirements, and research indicates that anthropogenic structures can adversely affect sage-grouse populations. Land management agencies have attempted to reduce the negative effects of anthropogenic development by assigning surface use (SU) designations, such as no surface occupancy, to areas around leks (breeding grounds). However, rationale for the size of these areas is often challenged. To help inform this issue, we used a spatial analysis of sage-grouse utilization distributions (UDs) to quantify seasonal (spring, summer and fall, winter) sage-grouse space use in relation to leks. We sampled UDs from 193 sage-grouse (11,878 telemetry locations) across 4 subpopulations within the Bi-State Distinct Population Segment (DPS, bordering California and Nevada) during 2003–2009. We quantified the volume of each UD (vUD) within a range of areas that varied in size and were centered on leks, up to a distance of 30 km from leks. We also quantified the percentage of nests within those areas. We then estimated the diminishing gains of vUD as area increased and produced continuous response curves that allow for flexibility in land management decisions. We found nearly 90% of the total vUD (all seasons combined) was contained within 5 km of leks, and we identified variation in vUD for a given distance related to season and migratory status. Five kilometers also represented the 95th percentile of the distribution of nesting distances. Because diminishing gains of vUD was not substantial until distances exceeded 8 km, managers should consider the theoretical optimal distances for SU designation

  18. Using DNA from hairs left at depredated greater sage-grouse nests to detect mammalian nest predators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Christopher P. Kirol; Kristine L. Pilgrim; Andrew L. Sutphin; Thomas L. Maechtle

    2018-01-01

    Despite a multitude of studies on sage-grouse (Centrocercus spp.), there is still sparse information on the predator communities that influence sage-grouse productivity and how these predator communities may change when sagebrush habitats are altered by human activities. As a proof-of-concept, we used mammalian hairs collected at depredated greater sage-grouse (C....

  19. Restoration handbook for sagebrush steppe ecosystems with emphasis on greater sage-grouse habitat—Part 1. Concepts for understanding and applying restoration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pyke, David A.; Chambers, Jeanne C.; Pellant, Mike; Knick, Steven T.; Miller, Richard F.; Beck, Jeffrey L.; Doescher, Paul S.; Schupp, Eugene W.; Roundy, Bruce A.; Brunson, Mark; McIver, James D.

    2015-10-26

    Sagebrush steppe ecosystems in the United States currently occur on only about one-half of their historical land area because of changes in land use, urban growth, and degradation of land, including invasions of non-native plants. The existence of many animal species depends on the existence of sagebrush steppe habitat. The greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) is a landscape-dependent bird that requires intact habitat and combinations of sagebrush and perennial grasses to exist. In addition, other sagebrush-obligate animals also have similar requirements and restoration of landscapes for greater sage-grouse also will benefit these animals. Once sagebrush lands are degraded, they may require restoration actions to make those lands viable habitat for supporting sagebrushobligate animals. This restoration handbook is the first in a three-part series on restoration of sagebrush ecosystems. In Part 1, we discuss concepts surrounding landscape and restoration ecology of sagebrush ecosystems and greater sage-grouse that habitat managers and restoration practitioners need to know to make informed decisions regarding where and how to restore specific areas. We will describe the plant dynamics of sagebrush steppe ecosystems and their responses to major disturbances, fire, and defoliation. We will introduce the concepts of ecosystem resilience to disturbances and resistance to invasions of annual grasses within sagebrush steppe. An introduction to soils and ecological site information will provide insights into the specific plants that can be restored in a location. Soil temperature and moisture regimes are described as a tool for determining resilience and resistance and the potential for various restoration actions. Greater sage-grouse are considered landscape birds that require large areas of intact sagebrush steppe; therefore, we describe concepts of landscape ecology that aid our decisions regarding habitat restoration. We provide a brief overview of

  20. Greater sage-grouse population trends across Wyoming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edmunds, David; Aldridge, Cameron L.; O'Donnell, Michael; Monroe, Adrian

    2018-01-01

    The scale at which analyses are performed can have an effect on model results and often one scale does not accurately describe the ecological phenomena of interest (e.g., population trends) for wide-ranging species: yet, most ecological studies are performed at a single, arbitrary scale. To best determine local and regional trends for greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) in Wyoming, USA, we modeled density-independent and -dependent population growth across multiple spatial scales relevant to management and conservation (Core Areas [habitat encompassing approximately 83% of the sage-grouse population on ∼24% of surface area in Wyoming], local Working Groups [7 regional areas for which groups of local experts are tasked with implementing Wyoming's statewide sage-grouse conservation plan at the local level], Core Area status (Core Area vs. Non-Core Area) by Working Groups, and Core Areas by Working Groups). Our goal was to determine the influence of fine-scale population trends (Core Areas) on larger-scale populations (Working Group Areas). We modeled the natural log of change in population size ( peak M lek counts) by time to calculate the finite rate of population growth (λ) for each population of interest from 1993 to 2015. We found that in general when Core Area status (Core Area vs. Non-Core Area) was investigated by Working Group Area, the 2 populations trended similarly and agreed with the overall trend of the Working Group Area. However, at the finer scale where Core Areas were analyzed separately, Core Areas within the same Working Group Area often trended differently and a few large Core Areas could influence the overall Working Group Area trend and mask trends occurring in smaller Core Areas. Relatively close fine-scale populations of sage-grouse can trend differently, indicating that large-scale trends may not accurately depict what is occurring across the landscape (e.g., local effects of gas and oil fields may be masked by increasing

  1. Greater sage-grouse science (2015–17)—Synthesis and potential management implications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanser, Steven E.; Deibert, Patricia A.; Tull, John C.; Carr, Natasha B.; Aldridge, Cameron L.; Bargsten, Travis D.; Christiansen, Thomas J.; Coates, Peter S.; Crist, Michele R.; Doherty, Kevin E.; Ellsworth, Ethan A.; Foster, Lee J.; Herren, Vicki A.; Miller, Kevin H.; Moser, Ann; Naeve, Robin M.; Prentice, Karen L.; Remington, Thomas E.; Ricca, Mark A.; Shinneman, Douglas J.; Truex, Richard L.; Wiechman , Lief A.; Wilson, Dereck C.; Bowen, Zachary H.

    2018-02-15

    Executive SummaryThe greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus; hereafter called “sage-grouse”), a species that requires sagebrush (Artemisia spp.), has experienced range-wide declines in its distribution and abundance. These declines have prompted substantial research and management investments to improve the understanding of sage-grouse and its habitats and reverse declines in distribution and population numbers.Over the past two decades, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) has responded to eight petitions to list the sage-grouse under the Endangered Species Act of 1973, with the completion of the most recent listing determination in September 2015. At that time, the USFWS determined that the sage-grouse did not warrant a listing, primarily because of the large scale science-based conservation and planning efforts completed or started by Federal, State, local agencies, private landowners, and other entities across the range. The planning efforts culminated in the development of the 2015 Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and U.S. Forest Service Land Use Plan Amendments, which provided regulatory certainty and commitment from Federal land-management agencies to limit, mitigate, and track anthropogenic disturbance and implement other sage-grouse conservation measures.After these policy decisions, the scientific community has continued to refine and expand the knowledge available to inform implementation of management actions, increase the efficiency and effectiveness of those actions, and continue developing an overall understanding of sage-grouse populations, habitat requirements, and their response to human activity and other habitat changes. The development of science has been driven by multiple prioritization documents including the “Greater Sage-Grouse National Research Strategy” (Hanser and Manier, 2013) and, most recently, the “Integrated Rangeland Fire Management Strategy Actionable Science Plan” (Integrated Rangeland Fire Management

  2. Large-scale control site selection for population monitoring: an example assessing Sage-grouse trends

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fedy, Bradley C.; O'Donnell, Michael; Bowen, Zachary H.

    2015-01-01

    Human impacts on wildlife populations are widespread and prolific and understanding wildlife responses to human impacts is a fundamental component of wildlife management. The first step to understanding wildlife responses is the documentation of changes in wildlife population parameters, such as population size. Meaningful assessment of population changes in potentially impacted sites requires the establishment of monitoring at similar, nonimpacted, control sites. However, it is often difficult to identify appropriate control sites in wildlife populations. We demonstrated use of Geographic Information System (GIS) data across large spatial scales to select biologically relevant control sites for population monitoring. Greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus; hearafter, sage-grouse) are negatively affected by energy development, and monitoring of sage-grouse population within energy development areas is necessary to detect population-level responses. Weused population data (1995–2012) from an energy development area in Wyoming, USA, the Atlantic Rim Project Area (ARPA), and GIS data to identify control sites that were not impacted by energy development for population monitoring. Control sites were surrounded by similar habitat and were within similar climate areas to the ARPA. We developed nonlinear trend models for both the ARPA and control sites and compared long-term trends from the 2 areas. We found little difference between the ARPA and control sites trends over time. This research demonstrated an approach for control site selection across large landscapes and can be used as a template for similar impact-monitoring studies. It is important to note that identification of changes in population parameters between control and treatment sites is only the first step in understanding the mechanisms that underlie those changes. Published 2015. This article is a U.S. Government work and is in the public domain in the USA.

  3. Interseasonal movements of greater sage-grouse, migratory behavior, and an assessment of the core regions concept in Wyoming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fedy, Bradley C.; Aldridge, Cameron L.; Doherty, Kevin E.; O'Donnell, Michael S.; Beck, Jeffrey L.; Bedrosian, Bryan; Holloran, Matthew J.; Johnson, Gregory D.; Kaczor, Nicholas W.; Kirol, Christopher P.; Mandich, Cheryl A.; Marshall, David; McKee, Gwyn; Olson, Chad; Swanson, Christopher C.; Walker, Brett L.

    2012-01-01

    Animals can require different habitat types throughout their annual cycles. When considering habitat prioritization, we need to explicitly consider habitat requirements throughout the annual cycle, particularly for species of conservation concern. Understanding annual habitat requirements begins with quantifying how far individuals move across landscapes between key life stages to access required habitats. We quantified individual interseasonal movements for greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus; hereafter sage-grouse) using radio-telemetry spanning the majority of the species distribution in Wyoming. Sage-grouse are currently a candidate for listing under the United States Endangered Species Act and Wyoming is predicted to remain a stronghold for the species. Sage-grouse use distinct seasonal habitats throughout their annual cycle for breeding, brood rearing, and wintering. Average movement distances in Wyoming from nest sites to summer-late brood-rearing locations were 8.1 km (SE = 0.3 km; n = 828 individuals) and the average subsequent distances moved from summer sites to winter locations were 17.3 km (SE = 0.5 km; n = 607 individuals). Average nest-to-winter movements were 14.4 km (SE = 0.6 km; n = 434 individuals). We documented remarkable variation in the extent of movement distances both within and among sites across Wyoming, with some individuals remaining year-round in the same vicinity and others moving over 50 km between life stages. Our results suggest defining any of our populations as migratory or non-migratory is innappropriate as individual strategies vary widely. We compared movement distances of birds marked using Global Positioning System (GPS) and very high frequency (VHF) radio marking techniques and found no evidence that the heavier GPS radios limited movement. Furthermore, we examined the capacity of the sage-grouse core regions concept to capture seasonal locations. As expected, we found the core regions approach, which was

  4. A conservation planning tool for Greater Sage-grouse using indices of species distribution, resilience, and resistance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ricca, Mark A; Coates, Peter S; Gustafson, K Benjamin; Brussee, Brianne E; Chambers, Jeanne C; Espinosa, Shawn P; Gardner, Scott C; Lisius, Sherri; Ziegler, Pilar; Delehanty, David J; Casazza, Michael L

    2018-06-01

    Managers require quantitative yet tractable tools that identify areas for restoration yielding effective benefits for targeted wildlife species and the ecosystems they inhabit. As a contemporary example of high national significance for conservation, the persistence of Greater Sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) in the Great Basin is compromised by strongly interacting stressors of conifer expansion, annual grass invasion, and more frequent wildfires occurring in sagebrush ecosystems. Associated restoration treatments to a sagebrush-dominated state are often costly and may yield relatively little ecological benefit to sage-grouse if implemented without estimating how Sage-grouse may respond to treatments, or do not consider underlying processes influencing sagebrush ecosystem resilience to disturbance and resistance to invasive species. Here, we describe example applications of a spatially explicit conservation planning tool (CPT) to inform prioritization of: (1) removal of conifers (i.e., pinyon-juniper); and (2) wildfire restoration aimed at improving habitat conditions for the Bi-State Distinct Population Segment of Sage-grouse along the California-Nevada state line. The CPT measures ecological benefits to sage-grouse for a given management action through a composite index comprised of resource selection functions and estimates of abundance and space use. For pinyon-juniper removal, we simulated changes in land-cover composition following the removal of sparse trees with intact understories, and ranked treatments on the basis of changes in ecological benefits per dollar-unit of cost. For wildfire restoration, we formulated a conditional model to simulate scenarios for land cover changes (e.g., sagebrush to annual grass) given estimated fire severity and underlying ecosystem processes influencing resilience to disturbance and resistance to invasion by annual grasses. For both applications, we compared CPT rankings to land cover changes along with sagebrush

  5. Quantifying restoration effectiveness using multi-scale habitat models: implications for sage-grouse in the Great Basin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arkle, Robert S.; Pilliod, David S.; Hanser, Steven E.; Brooks, Matthew L.; Chambers, Jeanne C.; Grace, James B.; Knutson, Kevin C.; Pyke, David A.; Welty, Justin L.

    2014-01-01

    A recurrent challenge in the conservation of wide-ranging, imperiled species is understanding which habitats to protect and whether we are capable of restoring degraded landscapes. For Greater Sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus), a species of conservation concern in the western United States, we approached this problem by developing multi-scale empirical models of occupancy in 211 randomly located plots within a 40 million ha portion of the species' range. We then used these models to predict sage-grouse habitat quality at 826 plots associated with 101 post-wildfire seeding projects implemented from 1990 to 2003. We also compared conditions at restoration sites to published habitat guidelines. Sage-grouse occupancy was positively related to plot- and landscape-level dwarf sagebrush (Artemisia arbuscula, A. nova, A. tripartita) and big sagebrush steppe prevalence, and negatively associated with non-native plants and human development. The predicted probability of sage-grouse occupancy at treated plots was low on average (0.09) and not substantially different from burned areas that had not been treated. Restoration sites with quality habitat tended to occur at higher elevation locations with low annual temperatures, high spring precipitation, and high plant diversity. Of 313 plots seeded after fire, none met all sagebrush guidelines for breeding habitats, but approximately 50% met understory guidelines, particularly for perennial grasses. This pattern was similar for summer habitat. Less than 2% of treated plots met winter habitat guidelines. Restoration actions did not increase the probability of burned areas meeting most guideline criteria. The probability of meeting guidelines was influenced by a latitudinal gradient, climate, and topography. Our results suggest that sage-grouse are relatively unlikely to use many burned areas within 20 years of fire, regardless of treatment. Understory habitat conditions are more likely to be adequate than overstory

  6. Science in the Public Sphere: Greater Sage-grouse Conservation Planning from a Transdisciplinary Perspective

    Science.gov (United States)

    Torregrosa, Alicia; Casazza, Michael L.; Caldwell, Margaret R.; Mathiasmeier, Teresa A.; Morgan, Peter M.; Overton, Cory T.

    2010-01-01

    Integration of scientific data and adaptive management techniques is critical to the success of species conservation, however, there are uncertainties about effective methods of knowledge exchange between scientists and decisionmakers. The conservation planning and implementation process for Greater Sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus; ) in the Mono Basin, Calif. region, was used as a case study to observe the exchange of scientific information among stakeholders with differing perspectives; resource manager, scientist, public official, rancher, and others. The collaborative development of a risk-simulation model was explored as a tool to transfer knowledge between stakeholders and inform conservation planning and management decisions. Observations compiled using a transdisciplinary approach were used to compare the exchange of information during the collaborative model development and more traditional interactions such as scientist-led presentations at stakeholder meetings. Lack of congruence around knowledge needs and prioritization led to insufficient commitment to completely implement the risk-simulation model. Ethnographic analysis of the case study suggests that further application of epistemic community theory, which posits a strong boundary condition on knowledge transfer, could help support application of risk simulation models in conservation-planning efforts within similarly complex social and bureaucratic landscapes.

  7. Non-target effects on songbirds from habitat manipulation for Greater Sage-Grouse: Implications for the umbrella species concept

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carlisle, Jason D.; Chalfoun, Anna D.; Smith, Kurt T.; Beck, Jeffery L.

    2018-01-01

    The “umbrella species” concept is a conservation strategy in which creating and managing reserve areas to meet the needs of one species is thought to benefit other species indirectly. Broad-scale habitat protections on behalf of an umbrella species are assumed to benefit co-occurring taxa, but targeted management actions to improve local habitat suitability for the umbrella species may produce unintended effects on other species. Our objective was to quantify the effects of a common habitat treatment (mowing of big sagebrush [Artemisia tridentata]) intended to benefit a high-profile umbrella species (Greater Sage-Grouse [Centrocercus urophasianus]) on 3 sympatric songbird species of concern. We used a before–after control-impact experimental design spanning 3 yr in Wyoming, USA, to quantify the effect of mowing on the abundance, nest-site selection, nestling condition, and nest survival of 2 sagebrush-obligate songbirds (Brewer's Sparrow [Spizella breweri] and Sage Thrasher [Oreoscoptes montanus]) and one open-habitat generalist songbird (Vesper Sparrow [Pooecetes gramineus]). Mowing was associated with lower abundance of Brewer's Sparrows and Sage Thrashers but higher abundance of Vesper Sparrows. We found no Brewer's Sparrows or Sage Thrashers nesting in the mowed footprint posttreatment, which suggests complete loss of nesting habitat for these species. Mowing was associated with higher nestling condition and nest survival for Vesper Sparrows but not for the sagebrush-obligate species. Management prescriptions that remove woody biomass within a mosaic of intact habitat may be tolerated by sagebrush-obligate songbirds but are likely more beneficial for open-habitat generalist species. By definition, umbrella species conservation entails habitat protections at broad spatial scales. We caution that habitat manipulations to benefit Greater Sage-Grouse could negatively affect nontarget species of conservation concern if implemented across large spatial extents.

  8. Conserving the Greater Sage-grouse: A social-ecological systems case study from the California-Nevada region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duvall, Alison L; Metcalf, Alexander L.; Coates, Peter S.

    2016-01-01

    The Endangered Species Act (ESA) continues to serve as one of the most powerful and contested federal legislative mandates for conservation. In the midst of heated debates, researchers, policy makers, and conservation practitioners champion the importance of cooperative conservation and social-ecological systems approaches, which forge partnerships at multiple levels and scales to address complex ecosystem challenges. However, few real-world examples exist to demonstrate how multifaceted collaborations among stakeholders who share a common goal of conserving at-risk species may be nested within a systems framework to achieve social and ecological goals. Here, we present a case study of Greater Sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) conservation efforts in the “Bi-State” region of California and Nevada, United States. Using key-informant interviews, we explored dimensions and drivers of this landscape-scale conservation effort. Three themes emerged from the interviews, including 1) ESA action was transformed into opportunity for system-wide conservation; 2) a diverse, locally based partnership anchored collaboration and engagement across multiple levels and scales; and 3) best-available science combined with local knowledge led to “certainty of effectiveness and implementation”—the criteria used by the US Fish and Wildlife Service to evaluate conservation efforts when making listing decisions. Ultimately, collaborative conservation through multistakeholder engagement at various levels and scales led to proactive planning and implementation of conservation measures and precluded the need for an ESA listing of the Bi-State population of Greater Sage-grouse. This article presents a potent example of how a systems approach integrating policy, management, and learning can be used to successfully overcome the conflict-laden and “wicked” challenges that surround at-risk species conservation.

  9. Encounters with Pinyon-Juniper influence riskier movements in Greater Sage-Grouse across the Great Basin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prochazka, Brian; Coates, Peter S.; Ricca, Mark; Casazza, Michael L.; Gustafson, K. Ben; Hull, Josh M.

    2016-01-01

    Fine-scale spatiotemporal studies can better identify relationships between individual survival and habitat fragmentation so that mechanistic interpretations can be made at the population level. Recent advances in Global Positioning System (GPS) technology and statistical models capable of deconstructing high-frequency location data have facilitated interpretation of animal movement within a behaviorally mechanistic framework. Habitat fragmentation due to singleleaf pinyon (Pinus monophylla; hereafter pinyon) and Utah juniper (Juniperus osteosperma; hereafter juniper) encroachment into sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) communities is a commonly implicated perturbation that can adversely influence greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus; hereafter sage-grouse) demographic rates. Using an extensive GPS data set (233 birds and 282,954 locations) across 12 study sites within the Great Basin, we conducted a behavioral change point analysis and subsequently constructed Brownian bridge movement models from each behaviorally homogenous section. We found a positive relationship between modeled movement rate and probability of encountering pinyon-juniper with significant variation among age classes. The probability of encountering pinyon-juniper among adults was two and three times greater than that of yearlings and juveniles, respectively. However, the movement rate in response to the probability of encountering pinyon-juniper trees was 1.5 times greater for juveniles. We then assessed the risk of mortality associated with an interaction between movement rate and the probability of encountering pinyon-juniper using shared frailty models. During pinyon-juniper encounters, on average, juvenile, yearling, and adult birds experienced a 10.4%, 0.2%, and 0.3% reduction in annual survival probabilities. Populations that used pinyon-juniper habitats with a frequency ≥ 3.8 times the overall mean experienced decreases in annual survival probabilities of 71.1%, 0.9%, and 0.9%. This

  10. Greater sage-grouse winter habitat use on the eastern edge of their range

    Science.gov (United States)

    Swanson, Christopher C.; Rumble, Mark A.; Grovenburg, Troy W.; Kaczor, Nicholas W.; Klaver, Robert W.; Herman-Brunson, Katie M.; Jenks, Jonathan A.; Jensen, Kent C.

    2013-01-01

    Greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) at the western edge of the Dakotas occur in the transition zone between sagebrush and grassland communities. These mixed sagebrush (Artemisia sp.) and grasslands differ from those habitats that comprise the central portions of the sage-grouse range; yet, no information is available on winter habitat selection within this region of their distribution. We evaluated factors influencing greater sage-grouse winter habitat use in North Dakota during 2005–2006 and 2006–2007 and in South Dakota during 2006–2007 and 2007–2008. We captured and radio-marked 97 breeding-age females and 54 breeding-age males from 2005 to 2007 and quantified habitat selection for 98 of these birds that were alive during winter. We collected habitat measurements at 340 (177 ND, 163 SD) sage-grouse use sites and 680 random (340 each at 250 m and 500 m from locations) dependent sites. Use sites differed from random sites with greater percent sagebrush cover (14.75% use vs. 7.29% random; P 2 use vs. 0.94 plants/m2 random; P ≤ 0.001), but lesser percent grass cover (11.76% use vs. 16.01% random; P ≤ 0.001) and litter cover (4.34% use vs. 5.55% random; P = 0.001) and lower sagebrush height (20.02 cm use vs. 21.35 cm random; P = 0.13) and grass height (21.47 cm use vs. 23.21 cm random; P = 0.15). We used conditional logistic regression to estimate winter habitat selection by sage-grouse on continuous scales. The model sagebrush cover + sagebrush height + sagebrush cover × sagebrush height (wi = 0.60) was the most supported of the 13 models we considered, indicating that percent sagebrush cover strongly influenced selection. Logistic odds ratios indicated that the probability of selection by sage-grouse increased by 1.867 for every 1% increase in sagebrush cover (95% CI = 1.627–2.141) and by 1.041 for every 1 cm increase in sagebrush height (95% CI = 1.002–1.082). The

  11. Restoration handbook for sagebrush steppe ecosystems with emphasis on greater sage-grouse habitat - Part 1

    Science.gov (United States)

    David A. Pyke; Jeanne C. Chambers; Mike Pellant; Steven T. Knick; Richard F. Miller; Jeffrey L. Beck; Paul S. Doescher; Eugene W. Schupp; Bruce A. Roundy; Mark Brunson; James D. McIver

    2015-01-01

    Sagebrush steppe ecosystems in the United States currently occur on only about one-half of their historical land area because of changes in land use, urban growth, and degradation of land, including invasions of non-native plants. The existence of many animal species depends on the existence of sagebrush steppe habitat. The greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus...

  12. Carryover effects and climatic conditions influence the postfledging survival of greater sage-grouse

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blomberg, Erik J.; Sedinger, James S.; Gibson, Daniel; Coates, Peter S.; Casazza, Michael L.

    2014-01-01

    Prebreeding survival is an important life history component that affects both parental fitness and population persistence. In birds, prebreeding can be separated into pre- and postfledging periods; carryover effects from the prefledging period may influence postfledging survival. We investigated effects of body condition at fledging, and climatic variation, on postfledging survival of radio-marked greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) in the Great Basin Desert of the western United States. We hypothesized that body condition would influence postfledging survival as a carryover effect from the prefledging period, and we predicted that climatic variation may mediate this carryover effect or, alternatively, would act directly on survival during the postfledging period. Individual body condition had a strong positive effect on postfledging survival of juvenile females, suggesting carryover effects from the prefledging period. Females in the upper 25th percentile of body condition scores had a postfledging survival probability more than twice that (Φ = 0.51 ± 0.06 SE) of females in the bottom 25th percentile (Φ = 0.21 ± 0.05 SE). A similar effect could not be detected for males. We also found evidence for temperature and precipitation effects on monthly survival rates of both sexes. After controlling for site-level variation, postfledging survival was nearly twice as great following the coolest and wettest growing season (Φ = 0.77 ± 0.05 SE) compared with the hottest and driest growing season (Φ = 0.39 ± 0.05 SE). We found no relationships between individual body condition and temperature or precipitation, suggesting that carryover effects operated independently of background climatic variation. The temperature and precipitation effects we observed likely produced a direct effect on mortality risk during the postfledging period. Conservation actions that focus on improving prefledging habitat for sage-grouse may have indirect benefits

  13. Effects of lek count protocols on greater sage-grouse population trend estimates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Monroe, Adrian; Edmunds, David; Aldridge, Cameron L.

    2016-01-01

    Annual counts of males displaying at lek sites are an important tool for monitoring greater sage-grouse populations (Centrocercus urophasianus), but seasonal and diurnal variation in lek attendance may increase variance and bias of trend analyses. Recommendations for protocols to reduce observation error have called for restricting lek counts to within 30 minutes of sunrise, but this may limit the number of lek counts available for analysis, particularly from years before monitoring was widely standardized. Reducing the temporal window for conducting lek counts also may constrain the ability of agencies to monitor leks efficiently. We used lek count data collected across Wyoming during 1995−2014 to investigate the effect of lek counts conducted between 30 minutes before and 30, 60, or 90 minutes after sunrise on population trend estimates. We also evaluated trends across scales relevant to management, including statewide, within Working Group Areas and Core Areas, and for individual leks. To further evaluate accuracy and precision of trend estimates from lek count protocols, we used simulations based on a lek attendance model and compared simulated and estimated values of annual rate of change in population size (λ) from scenarios of varying numbers of leks, lek count timing, and count frequency (counts/lek/year). We found that restricting analyses to counts conducted within 30 minutes of sunrise generally did not improve precision of population trend estimates, although differences among timings increased as the number of leks and count frequency decreased. Lek attendance declined >30 minutes after sunrise, but simulations indicated that including lek counts conducted up to 90 minutes after sunrise can increase the number of leks monitored compared to trend estimates based on counts conducted within 30 minutes of sunrise. This increase in leks monitored resulted in greater precision of estimates without reducing accuracy. Increasing count

  14. Hierarchical spatial genetic structure in a distinct population segment of greater sage-grouse

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oyler-McCance, Sara J.; Casazza, Michael L.; Fike, Jennifer A.; Coates, Peter S.

    2014-01-01

    Greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) within the Bi-State Management Zone (area along the border between Nevada and California) are geographically isolated on the southwestern edge of the species’ range. Previous research demonstrated that this population is genetically unique, with a high proportion of unique mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) haplotypes and with significant differences in microsatellite allele frequencies compared to populations across the species’ range. As a result, this population was considered a distinct population segment (DPS) and was recently proposed for listing as threatened under the U.S. Endangered Species Act. A more comprehensive understanding of the boundaries of this genetically unique population (where the Bi-State population begins) and an examination of genetic structure within the Bi-State is needed to help guide effective management decisions. We collected DNA from eight sampling locales within the Bi-State (N = 181) and compared those samples to previously collected DNA from the two most proximal populations outside of the Bi-State DPS, generating mtDNA sequence data and amplifying 15 nuclear microsatellites. Both mtDNA and microsatellite analyses support the idea that the Bi-State DPS represents a genetically unique population, which has likely been separated for thousands of years. Seven mtDNA haplotypes were found exclusively in the Bi-State population and represented 73 % of individuals, while three haplotypes were shared with neighboring populations. In the microsatellite analyses both STRUCTURE and FCA separate the Bi-State from the neighboring populations. We also found genetic structure within the Bi-State as both types of data revealed differences between the northern and southern part of the Bi-State and there was evidence of isolation-by-distance. STRUCTURE revealed three subpopulations within the Bi-State consisting of the northern Pine Nut Mountains (PNa), mid Bi-State, and White Mountains (WM) following a

  15. Habitat prioritization across large landscapes, multiple seasons, and novel areas: an example using greater sage-grouse in Wyoming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fedy, Bradley C.; Doherty, Kevin E.; Aldridge, Cameron L.; O'Donnell, Michael S.; Beck, Jeffrey L.; Bedrosian, Bryan; Gummer, David; Holloran, Matthew J.; Johnson, Gregory D.; Kaczor, Nicholas W.; Kirol, Christopher P.; Mandich, Cheryl A.; Marshall, David; McKee, Gwyn; Olson, Chad; Pratt, Aaron C.; Swanson, Christopher C.; Walker, Brett L.

    2014-01-01

    Animal habitat selection is an important and expansive area of research in ecology. In particular, the study of habitat selection is critical in habitat prioritization efforts for species of conservation concern. Landscape planning for species is happening at ever-increasing extents because of the appreciation for the role of landscape-scale patterns in species persistence coupled to improved datasets for species and habitats, and the expanding and intensifying footprint of human land uses on the landscape. We present a large-scale collaborative effort to develop habitat selection models across large landscapes and multiple seasons for prioritizing habitat for a species of conservation concern. Greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus, hereafter sage-grouse) occur in western semi-arid landscapes in North America. Range-wide population declines of this species have been documented, and it is currently considered as “warranted but precluded” from listing under the United States Endangered Species Act. Wyoming is predicted to remain a stronghold for sage-grouse populations and contains approximately 37% of remaining birds. We compiled location data from 14 unique radiotelemetry studies (data collected 1994–2010) and habitat data from high-quality, biologically relevant, geographic information system (GIS) layers across Wyoming. We developed habitat selection models for greater sage-grouse across Wyoming for 3 distinct life stages: 1) nesting, 2) summer, and 3) winter. We developed patch and landscape models across 4 extents, producing statewide and regional (southwest, central, northeast) models for Wyoming. Habitat selection varied among regions and seasons, yet preferred habitat attributes generally matched the extensive literature on sage-grouse seasonal habitat requirements. Across seasons and regions, birds preferred areas with greater percentage sagebrush cover and avoided paved roads, agriculture, and forested areas. Birds consistently preferred

  16. Restoration handbook for sagebrush steppe ecosystems with emphasis on greater sage-grouse habitat - Part 3: Site level restoration decisions

    Science.gov (United States)

    David A. Pyke; Jeanne C. Chambers; Mike Pellant; Richard F. Miller; Jeffrey L. Beck; Paul S. Doescher; Bruce A. Roundy; Eugene W. Schupp; Steven T. Knick; Mark Brunson; James D. McIver

    2017-01-01

    Sagebrush steppe ecosystems in the United States currently (2016) occur on only about one-half of their historical land area because of changes in land use, urban growth, and degradation of land, including invasions of non-native plants. The existence of many animal species depends on the existence of sagebrush steppe habitat. The greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus...

  17. Identifying Greater Sage-Grouse source and sink habitats for conservation planning in an energy development landscape.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kirol, Christopher P; Beck, Jeffrey L; Huzurbazar, Snehalata V; Holloran, Matthew J; Miller, Scott N

    2015-06-01

    Conserving a declining species that is facing many threats, including overlap of its habitats with energy extraction activities, depends upon identifying and prioritizing the value of the habitats that remain. In addition, habitat quality is often compromised when source habitats are lost or fragmented due to anthropogenic development. Our objective was to build an ecological model to classify and map habitat quality in terms of source or sink dynamics for Greater Sage-Grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) in the Atlantic Rim Project Area (ARPA), a developing coalbed natural gas field in south-central Wyoming, USA. We used occurrence and survival modeling to evaluate relationships between environmental and anthropogenic variables at multiple spatial scales and for all female summer life stages, including nesting, brood-rearing, and non-brooding females. For each life stage, we created resource selection functions (RSFs). We weighted the RSFs and combined them to form a female summer occurrence map. We modeled survival also as a function of spatial variables for nest, brood, and adult female summer survival. Our survival-models were mapped as survival probability functions individually and then combined with fixed vital rates in a fitness metric model that, when mapped, predicted habitat productivity (productivity map). Our results demonstrate a suite of environmental and anthropogenic variables at multiple scales that were predictive of occurrence and survival. We created a source-sink map by overlaying our female summer occurrence map and productivity map to predict habitats contributing to population surpluses (source habitats) or deficits (sink habitat) and low-occurrence habitats on the landscape. The source-sink map predicted that of the Sage-Grouse habitat within the ARPA, 30% was primary source, 29% was secondary source, 4% was primary sink, 6% was secondary sink, and 31% was low occurrence. Our results provide evidence that energy development and avoidance of

  18. The relative importance of intrinsic and extrinsic drivers to population growth vary among local populations of Greater Sage-Grouse: An integrated population modeling approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coates, Peter S.; Prochazka, Brian G.; Ricca, Mark A.; Halstead, Brian J.; Casazza, Michael L.; Blomberg, Erik J.; Brussee, Brianne E.; Wiechman, Lief; Tebbenkamp, Joel; Gardner, Scott C.; Reese, Kerry P.

    2018-01-01

    Consideration of ecological scale is fundamental to understanding and managing avian population growth and decline. Empirically driven models for population dynamics and demographic processes across multiple spatial scales can be powerful tools to help guide conservation actions. Integrated population models (IPMs) provide a framework for better parameter estimation by unifying multiple sources of data (e.g., count and demographic data). Hierarchical structure within such models that include random effects allow for varying degrees of data sharing across different spatiotemporal scales. We developed an IPM to investigate Greater Sage-Grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) on the border of California and Nevada, known as the Bi-State Distinct Population Segment. Our analysis integrated 13 years of lek count data (n > 2,000) and intensive telemetry (VHF and GPS; n > 350 individuals) data across 6 subpopulations. Specifically, we identified the most parsimonious models among varying random effects and density-dependent terms for each population vital rate (e.g., nest survival). Using a joint likelihood process, we integrated the lek count data with the demographic models to estimate apparent abundance and refine vital rate parameter estimates. To investigate effects of climatic conditions, we extended the model to fit a precipitation covariate for instantaneous rate of change (r). At a metapopulation extent (i.e. Bi-State), annual population rate of change λ (er) did not favor an overall increasing or decreasing trend through the time series. However, annual changes in λ were driven by changes in precipitation (one-year lag effect). At subpopulation extents, we identified substantial variation in λ and demographic rates. One subpopulation clearly decoupled from the trend at the metapopulation extent and exhibited relatively high risk of extinction as a result of low egg fertility. These findings can inform localized, targeted management actions for specific areas

  19. Landscape characteristics influencing the genetic structure of greater sage-grouse within the stronghold of their range: a holistic modeling approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Row, Jeff R; Oyler-McCance, Sara J.; Fike, Jennifer; O'Donnell, Michael; Doherty, Kevin E.; Aldridge, Cameron L.; Bowen, Zachary H.; Fedy, Brad C.

    2015-01-01

    Given the significance of animal dispersal to population dynamics and geographic variability, understanding how dispersal is impacted by landscape patterns has major ecological and conservation importance. Speaking to the importance of dispersal, the use of linear mixed models to compare genetic differentiation with pairwise resistance derived from landscape resistance surfaces has presented new opportunities to disentangle the menagerie of factors behind effective dispersal across a given landscape. Here, we combine these approaches with novel resistance surface parameterization to determine how the distribution of high- and low-quality seasonal habitat and individual landscape components shape patterns of gene flow for the greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) across Wyoming. We found that pairwise resistance derived from the distribution of low-quality nesting and winter, but not summer, seasonal habitat had the strongest correlation with genetic differentiation. Although the patterns were not as strong as with habitat distribution, multivariate models with sagebrush cover and landscape ruggedness or forest cover and ruggedness similarly had a much stronger fit with genetic differentiation than an undifferentiated landscape. In most cases, landscape resistance surfaces transformed with 17.33-km-diameter moving windows were preferred, suggesting small-scale differences in habitat were unimportant at this large spatial extent. Despite the emergence of these overall patterns, there were differences in the selection of top models depending on the model selection criteria, suggesting research into the most appropriate criteria for landscape genetics is required. Overall, our results highlight the importance of differences in seasonal habitat preferences to patterns of gene flow and suggest the combination of habitat suitability modeling and linear mixed models with our resistance parameterization is a powerful approach to discerning the effects of landscape

  20. The influence of mitigation on sage-grouse habitat selection within an energy development field.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bradley C Fedy

    Full Text Available Growing global energy demands ensure the continued growth of energy development. Energy development in wildlife areas can significantly impact wildlife populations. Efforts to mitigate development impacts to wildlife are on-going, but the effectiveness of such efforts is seldom monitored or assessed. Greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus are sensitive to energy development and likely serve as an effective umbrella species for other sagebrush-steppe obligate wildlife. We assessed the response of birds within an energy development area before and after the implementation of mitigation action. Additionally, we quantified changes in habitat distribution and abundance in pre- and post-mitigation landscapes. Sage-grouse avoidance of energy development at large spatial scales is well documented. We limited our research to directly within an energy development field in order to assess the influence of mitigation in close proximity to energy infrastructure. We used nest-location data (n = 488 within an energy development field to develop habitat selection models using logistic regression on data from 4 years of research prior to mitigation and for 4 years following the implementation of extensive mitigation efforts (e.g., decreased activity, buried powerlines. The post-mitigation habitat selection models indicated less avoidance of wells (well density β = 0.18 ± 0.08 than the pre-mitigation models (well density β = -0.09 ± 0.11. However, birds still avoided areas of high well density and nests were not found in areas with greater than 4 wells per km2 and the majority of nests (63% were located in areas with ≤ 1 well per km2. Several other model coefficients differed between the two time periods and indicated stronger selection for sagebrush (pre-mitigation β = 0.30 ± 0.09; post-mitigation β = 0.82 ± 0.08 and less avoidance of rugged terrain (pre-mitigation β = -0.35 ± 0.12; post-mitigation β = -0.05 ± 0.09. Mitigation efforts

  1. Forecasting sagebrush ecosystem components and greater sage-grouse habitat for 2050: learning from past climate patterns and Landsat imagery to predict the future

    Science.gov (United States)

    Homer, Collin G.; Xian, George Z.; Aldridge, Cameron L.; Meyer, Debra K.; Loveland, Thomas R.; O'Donnell, Michael S.

    2015-01-01

    Sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) ecosystems constitute the largest single North American shrub ecosystem and provide vital ecological, hydrological, biological, agricultural, and recreational ecosystem services. Disturbances have altered and reduced this ecosystem historically, but climate change may ultimately represent the greatest future risk. Improved ways to quantify, monitor, and predict climate-driven gradual change in this ecosystem is vital to its future management. We examined the annual change of Daymet precipitation (daily gridded climate data) and five remote sensing ecosystem sagebrush vegetation and soil components (bare ground, herbaceous, litter, sagebrush, and shrub) from 1984 to 2011 in southwestern Wyoming. Bare ground displayed an increasing trend in abundance over time, and herbaceous, litter, shrub, and sagebrush showed a decreasing trend. Total precipitation amounts show a downward trend during the same period. We established statistically significant correlations between each sagebrush component and historical precipitation records using a simple least squares linear regression. Using the historical relationship between sagebrush component abundance and precipitation in a linear model, we forecasted the abundance of the sagebrush components in 2050 using Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) precipitation scenarios A1B and A2. Bare ground was the only component that increased under both future scenarios, with a net increase of 48.98 km2 (1.1%) across the study area under the A1B scenario and 41.15 km2 (0.9%) under the A2 scenario. The remaining components decreased under both future scenarios: litter had the highest net reductions with 49.82 km2 (4.1%) under A1B and 50.8 km2 (4.2%) under A2, and herbaceous had the smallest net reductions with 39.95 km2 (3.8%) under A1B and 40.59 km2 (3.3%) under A2. We applied the 2050 forecast sagebrush component values to contemporary (circa 2006) greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus

  2. Annotated bibliography of scientific research on greater sage-grouse published since January 2015

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carter, Sarah K.; Manier, Daniel J.; Arkle, Robert S.; Johnston, Aaron; Phillips, Susan L.; Hanser, Steven E.; Bowen, Zachary H.

    2018-02-14

    The greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus; hereafter GRSG) has been a focus of scientific investigation and management action for the past two decades. The 2015 U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service listing determination of “not warranted” was in part due to a large-scale collaborative effort to develop strategies to conserve GRSG populations and their habitat and to reduce threats to both. New scientific information augments existing knowledge and can help inform updates or modifications to existing plans for managing GRSG and sagebrush ecosystems. However, the sheer number of scientific publications can be a challenge for managers tasked with evaluating and determining the need for potential updates to existing planning documents. To assist in this process, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) has reviewed and summarized the scientific literature published since January 1, 2015.To identify articles and reports published about GRSG, we first conducted a structured search of three reference databases (Web of Science, Scopus, and Google Scholar) using the search term “greater sage-grouse.” We refined the initial list of products by (1) removing duplicates, (2) excluding products that were not published as research or scientific review articles in peer-reviewed journals or as formal government technical reports, and (3) retaining only those products for which GRSG or their habitat was a research focus.We summarized the contents of each product by using a consistent structure (background, objectives, methods, location, findings, and implications) and assessed the content of each product relevant to a list of 31 management topics. These topics include GRSG biology and habitat characteristics along with potential management actions, land uses, and environmental factors related to GRSG management and conservation. We also noted which articles/reports created new geospatial data.The final search was conducted on January 6, 2018, and application of our criteria

  3. Restoring arid western habitats: Native plants maximize wildlife conservation effectiveness

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kas Dumroese; Jeremy Pinto; Deborah M. Finch

    2016-01-01

    Greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) and monarch butterflies (Danaus plexippus) and other pollinating insects have garnered a lot of attention recently from federal and state wildlife officials. These two species and pollinators share dwindling sagebrush habitat in the western United States that is putting their populations at risk. Sagebrush...

  4. Auxiliary VHF transmitter to aid recovery of solar Argos/GPS PTTs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Christopher P. Hansen; Mark A. Rumble; R. Scott Gamo; Joshua J. Millspaugh

    2014-01-01

    While conducting greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) research, we found that solar-powered global positioning systems platform transmitter terminals (GPS PTTs) can be lost if the solar panel does not receive adequate sunlight. Thus, we developed 5-g (mortality sensor included; Prototype A) and 9.8-g (no mortality sensor; Prototype B) auxiliary very high...

  5. An integrated modeling approach to estimating Gunnison Sage-Grouse population dynamics: combining index and demographic data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davis, Amy J.; Hooten, Mevin B.; Phillips, Michael L.; Doherty, Paul F.

    2014-01-01

    Evaluation of population dynamics for rare and declining species is often limited to data that are sparse and/or of poor quality. Frequently, the best data available for rare bird species are based on large-scale, population count data. These data are commonly based on sampling methods that lack consistent sampling effort, do not account for detectability, and are complicated by observer bias. For some species, short-term studies of demographic rates have been conducted as well, but the data from such studies are typically analyzed separately. To utilize the strengths and minimize the weaknesses of these two data types, we developed a novel Bayesian integrated model that links population count data and population demographic data through population growth rate (λ) for Gunnison sage-grouse (Centrocercus minimus). The long-term population index data available for Gunnison sage-grouse are annual (years 1953–2012) male lek counts. An intensive demographic study was also conducted from years 2005 to 2010. We were able to reduce the variability in expected population growth rates across time, while correcting for potential small sample size bias in the demographic data. We found the population of Gunnison sage-grouse to be variable and slightly declining over the past 16 years.

  6. Hybridization between Dusky Grouse and Sharp-tailed Grouse

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Donnell, Ryan P.

    2015-01-01

    Cache County, Utah, 7 April 2013: rare hybrid combination of grouse noted. Hybridization between Dusky Grouse (Dendragapus obscurus) and Sharp-tailed Grouse (Tympanuchus phasianellus) has been rarely documented in the wild. The only published record was of one collected from Osoyoos, British Columbia, in 1906 (Brooks 1907, Lincoln 1950). There is also one record of this hybrid in captivity (McCarthy 2006)...Although hybridization within genera is more common than between genera, it is perhaps not all too remarkable that these species would hybridize, given that Dendragapus and Tympanuchus are each other’s closest relatives (Drovetski 2002). The ranges of these two species overlap over a broad area ranging roughly from parts of northern Utah and Colorado to Yukon and the Northwest Territories. Given the close relatedness and extent of overlap of their ranges, it is perhaps surprising that there have not been more reports of this hybrid combination in the over-100 years since Brooks (1907) first described one. The species may be segregated by habitat use, as Sharp-tailed prefer open grassland sites for lekking and shrub areas for nesting, and Dusky are often found in more densely forested conifer stands—although Dusky often use more open habitats in the spring.

  7. Crucial nesting habitat for gunnison sage-grouse: A spatially explicit hierarchical approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aldridge, Cameron L.; Saher, D.J.; Childers, T.M.; Stahlnecker, K.E.; Bowen, Z.H.

    2012-01-01

    Gunnison sage-grouse (Centrocercus minimus) is a species of special concern and is currently considered a candidate species under Endangered Species Act. Careful management is therefore required to ensure that suitable habitat is maintained, particularly because much of the species' current distribution is faced with exurban development pressures. We assessed hierarchical nest site selection patterns of Gunnison sage-grouse inhabiting the western portion of the Gunnison Basin, Colorado, USA, at multiple spatial scales, using logistic regression-based resource selection functions. Models were selected using Akaike Information Criterion corrected for small sample sizes (AIC c) and predictive surfaces were generated using model averaged relative probabilities. Landscape-scale factors that had the most influence on nest site selection included the proportion of sagebrush cover >5%, mean productivity, and density of 2 wheel-drive roads. The landscape-scale predictive surface captured 97% of known Gunnison sage-grouse nests within the top 5 of 10 prediction bins, implicating 57% of the basin as crucial nesting habitat. Crucial habitat identified by the landscape model was used to define the extent for patch-scale modeling efforts. Patch-scale variables that had the greatest influence on nest site selection were the proportion of big sagebrush cover >10%, distance to residential development, distance to high volume paved roads, and mean productivity. This model accurately predicted independent nest locations. The unique hierarchical structure of our models more accurately captures the nested nature of habitat selection, and allowed for increased discrimination within larger landscapes of suitable habitat. We extrapolated the landscape-scale model to the entire Gunnison Basin because of conservation concerns for this species. We believe this predictive surface is a valuable tool which can be incorporated into land use and conservation planning as well the assessment of

  8. Ruffed grouse population dynamics in the central and southern Appalachians

    Science.gov (United States)

    John M. Giuliano Tirpak; C. Allan Miller; Thomas J. Allen; Steve Bittner; David A. Buehler; John W. Edwards; Craig A. Harper; William K. Igo; Gary W. Norman; M. Seamster; Dean F. Stauffer

    2006-01-01

    Ruffed grouse (Bonasa urnbellus; hereafter grouse) populations in the central and southern Appalachians are in decline. However, limited information on the dynamics of these populations prevents the development of effective management strategies to reverse these trends. We used radiotelemetry data collected on grouse to parameterize 6 models of...

  9. Extensive shared polymorphism at non-MHC immune genes in recently diverged North American prairie grouse

    Science.gov (United States)

    Minias, Piotr; Bateson, Zachary W.; Whittingham, Linda A.; Johnson, Jeff A.; Oyler-McCance, Sara J.; Dunn, Peter O.

    2018-01-01

    Gene polymorphisms shared between recently diverged species are thought to be widespread and most commonly reflect introgression from hybridization or retention of ancestral polymorphism through incomplete lineage sorting. Shared genetic diversity resulting from incomplete lineage sorting is usually maintained for a relatively short period of time, but under strong balancing selection it may persist for millions of years beyond species divergence (balanced trans-species polymorphism), as in the case of the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) genes. However, balancing selection is much less likely to act on non-MHC immune genes. The aim of this study was to investigate the patterns of shared polymorphism and selection at non-MHC immune genes in five grouse species from Centrocercus and Tympanuchus genera. For this purpose, we genotyped five non-MHC immune genes that do not interact directly with pathogens, but are involved in signaling and regulate immune cell growth. In contrast to previous studies with MHC, we found no evidence for balancing selection or balanced trans-species polymorphism among the non-MHC immune genes. No haplotypes were shared between genera and in most cases more similar allelic variants sorted by genus. Between species within genera, however, we found extensive shared polymorphism, which was most likely attributable to introgression or incomplete lineage sorting following recent divergence and large ancestral effective population size (i.e., weak genetic drift). Our study suggests that North American prairie grouse may have attained relatively low degree of reciprocal monophyly at nuclear loci and reinforces the rarity of balancing selection in non-MHC immune genes.

  10. 78 FR 59368 - Notice of Public Meeting: Northeast California Resource Advisory Council Sage Grouse Conservation...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-09-26

    ... Public Meeting: Northeast California Resource Advisory Council Sage Grouse Conservation Subcommittee and...) Northeast California Resource Advisory Council's sage grouse conservation subcommittee and the full Resource... conservation of sage grouse habitat. On November 12, the subcommittee will develop a recommendation for...

  11. Metabolism of radiocaesium in red grouse

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Moss, R.; Horrill, A.D.

    1996-01-01

    Red grouse eat a natural diet mostly of heather, a dwarf shrub which accumulates radiocaesium. Captive grouse were fed a diet, comprising 60% heather contaminated with Chernobyl radiocaesium, containing about 1500 Bq kg -1 of radiocaesium. Intake and excretion of radiocaesium reached equilibrium after 20-23 days and its biological half-life was 10-11 days, with about 23% of the radiocaesium in the diet being absorbed by the bird. Transfer coefficients for both captives and wild birds were about 10 days kg -1 . Radiocaesium activity concentrations in wild birds reflected those in their diet and it is suggested that the sampling of birds shot for sport could form an efficient means of monitoring radiocaesium levels in heather-dominated uplands in the UK. (Author)

  12. Emerging technology to measure habitat quality and behavior of grouse: Examples from studies of greater sage-grouse

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jennifer Sorensen Forbey; Gail L. Patricelli; Donna M. Delparte; Alan H. Krakauer; Peter J. Olsoy; Marcella R. Fremgen; Jordan D. Nobler; Lucas P. Spaete; Lisa A. Shipley; Janet L. Rachlow; Amy K. Dirksen; Anna Perry; Bryce A. Richardson; Nancy F. Glenn

    2017-01-01

    An increasing number of threats, both natural (e.g. fires, drought) and anthropogenic (e.g. agriculture, infrastructure development), are likely to affect both availability and quality of plants that grouse rely on for cover and food. As such, there is an increasing need to monitor plants and their use by grouse over space and time to better predict how changes in...

  13. Multi-scale habitat use of male ruffed grouse in the Black Hills National Forest

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cassandra L. Mehls; Kent C. Jensen; Mark A. Rumble; Michael C. Wimberly

    2014-01-01

    Ruffed grouse (Bonasa umbellus) are native upland game birds and a management indicator species (MIS) for aspen (Populus tremuloides) in the Black Hills National Forest (Black Hills). Our objective was to assess resource selection of male ruffed grouse to identify the most appropriate scale to manage for aspen and ruffed grouse in the Black Hills. During spring 2007...

  14. Latent spatial models and sampling design for landscape genetics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanks, Ephraim M.; Hooten, Mevin B.; Knick, Steven T.; Oyler-McCance, Sara J.; Fike, Jennifer A.; Cross, Todd B.; Schwartz, Michael K.

    2016-01-01

    We propose a spatially-explicit approach for modeling genetic variation across space and illustrate how this approach can be used to optimize spatial prediction and sampling design for landscape genetic data. We propose a multinomial data model for categorical microsatellite allele data commonly used in landscape genetic studies, and introduce a latent spatial random effect to allow for spatial correlation between genetic observations. We illustrate how modern dimension reduction approaches to spatial statistics can allow for efficient computation in landscape genetic statistical models covering large spatial domains. We apply our approach to propose a retrospective spatial sampling design for greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) population genetics in the western United States.

  15. Wildfire and invasive species in the west: challenges that hinder current and future management and protection of the sagebrush-steppe ecosystem: a Gap Report

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mayer, Kenneth F.; Anderson, Pete; Chambers, Jeanne; Boyd, Chad; Christiansen, Tom; Davis, Dawn; Espinosa, Shawn; Havlina, Doug; Ielmini, Michael; Kemner, Don; Kurth, Laurie; Maestas, Jeremy; Mealor, Brian; Milesneck, Ted; Niell, Lara; Pellant, Mike; Pyke, David A.; Tague, Joe; Vernon, Jason

    2013-01-01

    The Western Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies (WAFWA) to satisfy the 45-day report requirement identified in Cooperative Agreement (F13AC00353) between WAFWA and the U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) submit this “Gap Report”. This report summarizes the policy, fiscal and science challenges that land managers encounter related to the control and reduction of the invasive plant/fire complex, especially as it relates to the threaten or endangered species listing status of the Greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus).

  16. Field Surveys, IOC Valleys. Biological Resources Survey, Dry Lake Valley, Nevada. Volume II, Part I.

    Science.gov (United States)

    1981-08-01

    years ago; the transplant was considered unsuccessful. Sagebrush is the principal item in the diet of adult sage grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus), and...canyon areas in the normal chukar partridge range but can also extend its range to areas too dry for the chukar. The transplant was not con- sidered...determined. - Ertee E-TR-48-II-I SSL1’N SL xx- C - - _ 0S91’ - - I. 009t N - - 0’J o,, s). N, - . ,o 09 -SW,- - - ,o T z X -4 oseo 0L91 - N - = - ozot ma

  17. Male greater sage-grouse detectability on leks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aleshia L. Fremgen; Christopher P. Hansen; Mark A. Rumble; R. Scott Gamo; Joshua J. Millspaugh

    2016-01-01

    It is unlikely all male sage-grouse are detected during lek counts, which could complicate the use of lek counts as an index to population abundance. Understanding factors that influence detection probabilities will allow managers to more accurately estimate the number of males present on leks. We fitted 410 males with global positioning system and very high...

  18. Sage-Grouse and Wind Energy: Biology, Habits, and Potential Effects from Development

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Becker, James M.; Tagestad, Jerry D.; Duberstein, Corey A.; Downs, Janelle L.

    2009-07-15

    Proposed development of domestic energy resources, including wind energy, is expected to impact the sagebrush steppe ecosystem in the western United States. The greater sage-grouse relies on habitats within this ecosystem for survival, yet very little is known about how wind energy development may affect sage-grouse. The purpose of this report is to inform organizations of the impacts wind energy development could have on greater sage-grouse populations and identify information needed to fill gaps in knowledge.

  19. Ecology of sage grouse on the Idaho National Engineering Laboratory Site

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Connelly, J.W.; Ball, I.J.

    1978-01-01

    A comprehensive study of the sage grouse ecology was initiated on the INEL Site in 1977. Objectives include documentation of radionuclide concentrations, population size, habitat use, and movement patterns of sage grouse on the Site. Sixteen grouse have been collected and radionuclide concentrations determined. Only part of the Site and surrounding area have been adequately searched for strutting grounds (leks), but 32 have been located to date. Trapping success has been strongly influenced by weather conditions and by the season; 121 sage grouse have been captured, banded, and color- and radio-marked

  20. 75 FR 59803 - Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Determination for the Gunnison Sage-grouse as a...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-09-28

    ... sage-grouse do not possess muscular gizzards and, therefore, lack the ability to grind and digest seeds...-grouse exhibit a polygamous mating system where a male mates with several females. Males perform...

  1. 77 FR 71396 - Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest; Nevada and California Greater Sage Grouse Bi-State Distinct...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-11-30

    ... Greater Sage Grouse Bi-State Distinct Population Segment Forest Plan Amendment Environmental Impact... Sage Grouse Bi- State Distinct Population Segment. DATES: Comments concerning the scope of the analysis..., but precluded'' Endangered Species Act (ESA) listing petition decision for the Greater Sage grouse Bi...

  2. 78 FR 65703 - Notice of Availability of the Idaho and Southwestern Montana Greater Sage-Grouse Draft Land Use...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-11-01

    ...] Notice of Availability of the Idaho and Southwestern Montana Greater Sage-Grouse Draft Land Use Plan... Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for managing Greater Sage- Grouse (GRSG) in the Idaho and Southwestern... Southwestern Montana Greater Sage-Grouse Draft LUP Amendments/Draft EIS by any of the following methods: Email...

  3. 78 FR 50088 - Notice of Availability of the Northwest Colorado Greater Sage-Grouse Draft Resource Management...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-08-16

    ... Availability of the Northwest Colorado Greater Sage- Grouse Draft Resource Management Plan Amendment and Draft... Land Management (BLM) has prepared a Northwest Colorado Greater Sage-Grouse Draft Resource Management.../or mailings. ADDRESSES: You may submit comments related to the Northwest Colorado Greater Sage-Grouse...

  4. Ruffed grouse (Bonasa Umbellus) use of stands harvested via alternative regeneration methods in the southern Appalachians

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benjamin C. Jones; Craig A. Harper

    2007-01-01

    Ruffed grouse (Bonasa umbellus L.) habitat use was studied in the mountains of western North Carolina. In 1997, 9 stands on the study site were harvested via alternative regeneration methods, including shelterwood, irregular shelterwood, and group selection. From 1999–2004, 276 grouse were radio tagged and monitored, resulting in over 7,000 location...

  5. Sage-Grouse on the edge: understanding and managing western landscapes for their survival

    Science.gov (United States)

    Noreen Parks; Michael J. Wisdom

    2012-01-01

    Populations of greater sage-grouse have declined dramatically across their North American range for many decades in response to harmful effects of a plethora of human activities and land uses, prompting legal actions to protect the species under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). To evaluate the impacts of land-uses and habitat changes on sage-grouse, Michael Wisdom, a...

  6. Microscopic and Molecular Tracing of Cryptosporidium Oocysts: Identifying a Possible Reservoir of Infection in Red Grouse

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Baines

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Infection by Cryptosporidium baileyi causes respiratory cryptosporidiosis in red grouse Lagopus lagopus scotica. First diagnosed in 2010, it has since been detected across half of moors managed for grouse shooting in northern England. We hypothesised that contaminated grouse faeces within communal trays visited by grouse containing grit coated with flubendazole, provided to control Trichostrongylus tenuis parasites of grouse, is a reservoir of infection. To establish the basis to this hypothesis, contents of 23 trays from a grouse moor were examined for Cryptosporidium oocysts. Contents were subjected to Immuno Magnetic Separation oocyst concentration techniques prior to examination by Immuno Fluorescence Antibody Test microscopy and molecular analysis on the 18S rRNA gene. Seven of 13 (54% grit trays known to be used by infected grouse were positive for Cryptosporidium by IMS-IFAT, compared to two of 10 (20% random background trays. Ten of the 13 (77% trays used by infected birds amplified positive for Cryptosporidium by Polymerase Chain Reaction and three of the 10 (30% random trays. All PCR amplified products sequenced matched with C. baileyi, with C. parvum also present in one tray. These data suggest that trays used to “worm” grouse may act as reservoirs of Cryptosporidium infection and their future design may need to be reconsidered to minimise contamination.

  7. Survival of translocated sharp-tailed grouse: Temporal threshold and age effects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mathews, Steven; Coates, Peter S.; Delehanty, David J.

    2016-01-01

    Context: The Columbian sharp-tailed grouse (Tympanuchus phasianellus columbianus) is a subspecies of conservation concern in the western United States, currently occupying ≤10% of its historic range. Land and management agencies are employing translocation techniques to restore Columbian sharp-tailed grouse (CSTG) populations. However, establishing self-sustaining populations by translocating grouse often is unsuccessful, owing, in part, to low survivorship of translocated grouse following release.Aims: We measured and modelled patterns of CSTG mortality for 150 days following translocation into historic range, to better understand patterns and causes of success or failure in conservation efforts to re-establish grouse populations.Methods: We conducted two independent multi-year translocations and evaluated individual and temporal factors associated with CSTG survival up to 150 days following their release. Both translocations were reintroduction attempts in Nevada, USA, to establish viable populations of CSTG into their historic range.Key results: We observed a clear temporal threshold in survival probability, with CSTG mortality substantially higher during the first 50 days following release than during the subsequent 100 days. Additionally, translocated yearling grouse exhibited higher overall survival (0.669 ± 0.062) than did adults (0.420 ± 0.052) across the 150-day period and higher survival than adults both before and after the 50-day temporal threshold.Conclusions: Translocated CSTG are especially vulnerable to mortality for 50 days following release, whereas translocated yearling grouse are more resistant to mortality than are adult grouse. On the basis of the likelihood of survival, yearling CSTG are better candidates for population restoration through translocation than are adult grouse.Implications: Management actions that ameliorate mortality factors for 50 days following translocation and translocations that employ yearling grouse will

  8. Sharp-tailed Grouse and Pygmy Rabbit Wildlife Mitigation Project

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1992-10-01

    The Proposed Action is needed to protect and enhance shrub-steppe and riparian habitat for sharp-tailed grouse (Tympanuchus phasianellus columbianus), Pygmy rabbits (Brachylagus idahoensis), and other indigenous wildlife species. The purpose of the Proposed Action is to compensate, in part, for wildlife habitat lost from the construction of Grand Coulee Dam and the inundation of Lake Roosevelt. Bonneville Power Administration proposes to fund management agreements, conservation easements, acquisition of fee title, or a combination of these on as many as 29,000 acres in Lincoln and Douglas Counties to improve shrub-steppe and riparian habitat for sharp-tailed grouse and pygmy rabbits. The BPA also proposes to fund habitat improvements (enhancements) on project lands including existing public lands. Proposed habitat treatments would include control of grazing; planting of native trees, shrubs, forbs and grasses; protection of wetlands and streambanks; herbicide use; fire prescriptions; and wildfire suppression. Proposed management activities may include predator control, population introductions, and control of crop depredation

  9. Radionuclide uptake by beaver and ruffed grouse in the Serpent River basin

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Clulow, F.V.

    1988-12-01

    Radionuclide levels were measured in tissues, gut contents, and diet items of adult beaver and ruffed grouse from the Serpent River drainage basin (which contains the city of Elliot Lake) and control sites in Ontario, and in beaver and muskrat fetuses from females taken in the same basin. Levels of radium 226 in beaver bone, muscle and kidney were highest in animals from locations close to uranium tailings; liver levels did not vary by site. Grouse taken near Elliot Lake has higher bone levels of radium 226 than distant controls; levels in other tissues did not vary by site. Environmental radium 226 levels were within ranges previously reported at these or similar locations elsewhere; levels in beaver and grouse gut contents reflected levels in diet items. Fetal beaver tissues had higher radium 226 levels than maternal tissues; fetal liver tissue carried higher levels than other body tissues in general; fetal levels varied with maternal levels but also inversely with fetal size (and thus age). Although muskrat fetal liver had more radium 226 than other tissues, levels were lower than maternal bone levels. In two grouse and two beaver, selected for their higher tissue levels of radium 226, neither thorium 232 nor thorium 230 were detected in bone, muscle, or liver samples, however other radionuclides were measured: uranium 238 in beaver and grouse bone, muscle and liver; thorium 228 in beaver bone and grouse muscle; polonium 210 was found in bone, muscle, and liver of both beaver and grouse sampled (except in one grouse muscle sample); lead 210 was measurable only in beaver bone and in one grouse liver sample. Concentration ratios exceeded unity only between some vegetation items and beaver bone at the Elliot Lake site; between vegetation and other beaver tissues values were never more than 0.19. In grouse, the concentration ratios from trembling aspen leaves to bone was 1.04; from other diet items and to other tissues the values were less than unity. Estimated

  10. Spatial heterogeneity in response of male greater sage-grouse lek attendance to energy development.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew J Gregory

    Full Text Available Landscape modification due to rapidly expanding energy development, in particular oil and gas, in the westernUSA, have prompted concerns over how such developments may impact wildlife. One species of conservation concern across much of the Intermountain West is the greater sage-grouse (Centrocercusurophasianus. Sage-grouse have been petitioned for listing under provisions of the Endangered Species Act 7 times and the state of Wyoming alone represents 64% of the extant sage-grouse population in the eastern portion of their range. Consequently, the relationship between sage-grouse populations and oil and gas development in Wyoming is an important component to managing the long-term viability of this species. We used 814 leks from the Wyoming Game and Fish Department's lek survey database and well pad data from the Wyoming Oil and Gas Conservation Commission to evaluate changes in sage-grouse lek counts as a function of oil and gas development since 1991.From 1991-2011 we found that oil and gas well-pad density increased 3.6-fold across the state and was associated with a 24% decline in the number of male sage-grouse. Using a spatial and temporally structured analysis via Geographically Weighted Regression, we found a 1-to-4 year time lag between development density and lek decline. Sage-grouse also responded to development densities at multiple spatial neighborhoods surrounding leks, including broad scales of 10 km. However, sage-grouse lek counts do not always decline as a result of oil and gas development. We found similar development densities resulting in different sage-grouse lek count responses, suggesting that development density alone is insufficient to predict the impacts that oil and gas development have on sage-grouse. Finally, our analysis suggests a maximum development density of 1 well-pad within 2 km of leks to avoid measurable impacts within 1 year, and <6 well-pads within 10 km of leks to avoid delayed impacts.

  11. Climate change and mountain Grouse: recent evidences from alpine habitats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brugnoli A

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available Current climate change, referring as well to the observed rain and temperature patterns as to the increased frequency and intensity of extreme weather conditions, has a deep influence on biotic communities and, in particular, on mountain Grouse. These species show great adaptation to coldness, are highly sedentary and have quite “strict” ecological requirements, when it deals with habitat selection. Moreover, their alpine ranges are dangerously marginal to the main distribution areas, which increases the risk of dramatic changes in occurrence, demography and ecology. However, not all the species will predictably be exposed in the same way to the menace of climate change over the next 50-100 years. This article gives a brief review of the main data acquired in the alpine environment in this matter. It also underlines the utmost need to proceed with research and monitoring activities, in order to effectively adapt and manage conservation strategies on mid-long terms.

  12. Using resilience and resistance concepts to manage threats to sagebrush ecosystems, Gunnison sage-grouse, and Greater sage-grouse in their eastern range: A strategic multi-scale approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jeanne C. Chambers; Jeffrey L. Beck; Steve Campbell; John Carlson; Thomas J. Christiansen; Karen J. Clause; Jonathan B. Dinkins; Kevin E. Doherty; Kathleen A. Griffin; Douglas W. Havlina; Kenneth F. Henke; Jacob D. Hennig; Laurie L. Kurth; Jeremy D. Maestas; Mary Manning; Kenneth E. Mayer; Brian A. Mealor; Clinton McCarthy; Marco A. Perea; David A. Pyke

    2016-01-01

    This report provides a strategic approach developed by a Western Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies interagency working group for conservation of sagebrush ecosystems, Greater sage-grouse, and Gunnison sage-grouse. It uses information on (1) factors that influence sagebrush ecosystem resilience to disturbance and resistance to nonnative invasive annual grasses...

  13. Using resilience and resistance concepts to manage threats to sagebrush ecosystems, Gunnison sage-grouse, and Greater sage-grouse in their eastern range: A strategic multi-scale approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chambers, Jeanne C.; Beck, Jeffrey L.; Campbell, Steve; Carlson, John; Christiansen, Thomas J.; Clause, Karen J.; Dinkins, Jonathan B.; Doherty, Kevin E.; Griffin, Kathleen A.; Havlina, Douglas W.; Mayer, Kenneth F.; Hennig, Jacob D.; Kurth, Laurie L.; Maestas, Jeremy D.; Manning, Mary E.; Mealor, Brian A.; McCarthy, Clinton; Perea, Marco A.; Pyke, David A.

    2016-01-01

    This report provides a strategic approach developed by a Western Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies interagency working group for conservation of sagebrush ecosystems, Greater sage-grouse, and Gunnison sage-grouse. It uses information on (1) factors that influence sagebrush ecosystem resilience to disturbance and resistance to nonnative invasive annual grasses and (2) distribution and relative abundance of sage-grouse populations to address persistent ecosystem threats, such as invasive annual grasses and wildfire, and land use and development threats, such as oil and gas development and cropland conversion, to develop effective management strategies. A sage-grouse habitat matrix links relative resilience and resistance of sagebrush ecosystems with modeled sage-grouse breeding habitat probabilities to help decisionmakers assess risks and determine appropriate management strategies at both landscape and site scales. Areas for targeted management are assessed by overlaying matrix components with Greater sage-grouse Priority Areas for Conservation and Gunnison sage-grouse critical habitat and linkages, breeding bird concentration areas, and specific habitat threats. Decision tools are discussed for determining the suitability of target areas for management and the most appropriate management actions. A similar approach was developed for the Great Basin that was incorporated into the Federal land use plan amendments and served as the basis of a Bureau of Land Management Fire and Invasives Assessment Tool, which was used to prioritize sage-grouse habitat for targeted management activities.

  14. 77 FR 12792 - Notice of Forest Service Land Management Plans To Be Amended To Incorporate Greater Sage-Grouse...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-03-02

    ... Forest Service Land Management Plans To Be Amended To Incorporate Greater Sage-Grouse Conservation... sage-grouse conservation measures into land use plans and land management plans. The BLM is the lead... submitted in writing until March 23, 2012. ADDRESSES: You may submit comments related to the greater sage...

  15. Conservation and restoration of sagebrush ecosystems and sage-grouse: An assessment of USDA Forest Service Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deborah M. Finch; Douglas A. Boyce; Jeanne C. Chambers; Chris J. Colt; Kas Dumroese; Stanley G. Kitchen; Clinton McCarthy; Susan E. Meyer; Bryce A. Richardson; Mary M. Rowland; Mark A. Rumble; Michael K. Schwartz; Monica S. Tomosy; Michael J. Wisdom

    2016-01-01

    Sagebrush ecosystems are among the largest and most threatened ecosystems in North America. Greater sage-grouse has served as the bellwether for species conservation in these ecosystems and has been considered for listing under the Endangered Species Act eight times. In September 2015, the decision was made not to list greater sage-grouse, but to reevaluate its status...

  16. Monoterpenes as inhibitors of digestive enzymes and counter-adaptations in a specialist avian herbivore.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kohl, Kevin D; Pitman, Elizabeth; Robb, Brecken C; Connelly, John W; Dearing, M Denise; Forbey, Jennifer Sorensen

    2015-05-01

    Many plants produce plant secondary metabolites (PSM) that inhibit digestive enzymes of herbivores, thus limiting nutrient availability. In response, some specialist herbivores have evolved digestive enzymes that are resistant to inhibition. Monoterpenes, a class of PSMs, have not been investigated with respect to the interference of specific digestive enzymes, nor have such interactions been studied in avian herbivores. We investigated this interaction in the Greater Sage-Grouse (Phasianidae: Centrocercus urophasianus), which specializes on monoterpene-rich sagebrush species (Artemisia spp.). We first measured the monoterpene concentrations in gut contents of free-ranging sage-grouse. Next, we compared the ability of seven individual monoterpenes present in sagebrush to inhibit a protein-digesting enzyme, aminopeptidase-N. We also measured the inhibitory effects of PSM extracts from two sagebrush species. Inhibition of aminopeptidase-N in sage-grouse was compared to inhibition in chickens (Gallus gallus). We predicted that sage-grouse enzymes would retain higher activity when incubated with isolated monoterpenes or sagebrush extracts than chicken enzymes. We detected unchanged monoterpenes in the gut contents of free-ranging sage-grouse. We found that three isolated oxygenated monoterpenes (borneol, camphor, and 1,8-cineole) inhibited digestive enzymes of both bird species. Camphor and 1,8-cineole inhibited enzymes from chickens more than from sage-grouse. Extracts from both species of sagebrush had similar inhibition of chicken enzymes, but did not inhibit sage-grouse enzymes. These results suggest that specific monoterpenes may limit the protein digestibility of plant material by avian herbivores. Further, this work presents additional evidence that adaptations of digestive enzymes to plant defensive compounds may be a trait of specialist herbivores.

  17. Genetic impoverishment of the last black grouse (Tetrao tetrix) population in the Netherlands

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Larsson, J.K.; Jansman, H.A.H.; Niewold, F.J.J.; Segelbacher, G.; Höglund, J.; Koelewijn, H.P.

    2005-01-01

    We have studied a small isolated bottlenecked population of Black grouse (Tetrao tetrix) in the Netherlands to examine the impact of isolation and reduction in numbers on the genetic diversity. We compared the genetic diversity in the last present Dutch population with Dutch museum samples and three

  18. Greater sage-grouse as an umbrella species for sagebrush-associated vertebrates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mary M. Rowland; Michael J. Wisdom; Lowell Suring; Cara W. Meinke

    2006-01-01

    Widespread degradation of the sagebrush ecosystem in the western United States, including the invasion of cheatgrass, has prompted resource managers to consider a variety of approaches to restore and conserve habitats for sagebrush-associated species. One such approach involves the use of greater sage-grouse, a species of prominent conservation interest, as an umbrella...

  19. Ornamental comb colour predicts T-cell-mediated immunity in male red grouse Lagopus lagopus scoticus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mougeot, Francois

    2008-02-01

    Sexual ornaments might reliably indicate the ability to cope with parasites and diseases, and a better ability to mount a primary inflammatory response to a novel challenge. Carotenoid-based ornaments are amongst the commonest sexual signals of birds and often influence mate choice. Because carotenoids are immuno-stimulants, signallers may trade-off allocating these to ornamental colouration or using them for immune responses, so carotenoid-based ornaments might be particularly useful as honest indicators of immuno-compentence. Tetraonid birds, such as the red grouse Lagopus lagopus scoticus, exhibit supra-orbital yellow red combs, a conspicuous ornament which functions in intra- and inter-sexual selection. The colour of combs is due to epidermal pigmentation by carotenoids, while their size is testosterone-dependent. In this study, I investigated whether comb characteristics, and in particular, comb colour, indicated immuno-competence in free-living male red grouse. I assessed T-cell-mediated immunity using a standardised challenge with phytohaemagglutinin. Red grouse combs reflect in the red and in the ultraviolet spectrum of light, which is not visible to humans but that grouse most likely see, so I measured comb colour across the whole bird visible spectrum (300 700 nm) using a reflectance spectrometer. I found that males with bigger and redder combs, but with less ultraviolet reflectance, had greater T-cell-mediated immune response. Comb colour predicted T-cell-mediated immune response better than comb size, indicating that the carotenoid-based colouration of this ornament might reliably signal this aspect of male quality.

  20. Overview of a workshop to expand the use of emerging technology to understand the ecology of grouse in a changing climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jennifer Forbey; Gail Patricelli; Donna Delparte; Alan Krakauer; Peter Olsoy; Marcella Fremgen; Jordan Nobler; Nancy Glenn; Lucas Spaete; Bryce Richardson; Lisa Shipley; Jessica. Mitchell

    2016-01-01

    We held a workshop related to the use of emerging technology to understand the ecology of grouse on 03 September 2015 from 08:00 to 17:30 at the Reykjavik Family Park and Zoo, Reykjavik, Iceland as part of the 13th International Grouse Symposium. Our overall objective was to translate technological advances in remote sensing, rapid biochemical assays, and robotics to...

  1. Haemosporidian parasite infections in grouse and ptarmigan: Prevalence and genetic diversity of blood parasites in resident Alaskan birds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Matthew M.; Van Hemert, Caroline R.; Merizon, Richard

    2016-01-01

    Projections related to future climate warming indicate the potential for an increase in the distribution and prevalence of blood parasites in northern regions. However, baseline data are lacking for resident avian host species in Alaska. Grouse and ptarmigan occupy a diverse range of habitat types throughout the northern hemisphere and are among the most well-known and important native game birds in North America. Information regarding the prevalence and diversity of haemosporidian parasites in tetraonid species is limited, with few recent studies and an almost complete lack of genetic data. To better understand the genetic diversity of haemosporidian parasites in Alaskan tetraonids and to determine current patterns of geographic range and host specificity, we used molecular methods to screen 459 tissue samples collected from grouse and ptarmigan species across multiple regions of Alaska for infection by Leucocytozoon, Haemoproteus, and Plasmodium blood parasites. Infections were detected in 342 individuals, with overall apparent prevalence of 53% for Leucocytozoon, 21% for Haemoproteus, and 9% for Plasmodium. Parasite prevalence varied by region, with different patterns observed between species groups (grouse versus ptarmigan). Leucocytozoon was more common in ptarmigan, whereas Haemoproteus was more common in grouse. We detected Plasmodium infections in grouse only. Analysis of haemosporidian mitochondrial DNA cytochrome b sequences revealed 23 unique parasite haplotypes, several of which were identical to lineages previously detected in other avian hosts. Phylogenetic analysis showed close relationships between haplotypes from our study and those identified in Alaskan waterfowl for Haemoproteus and Plasmodium parasites. In contrast, Leucocytozoon lineages were structured strongly by host family. Our results provide some of the first genetic data for haemosporidians in grouse and ptarmigan species, and provide an initial baseline on the prevalence and diversity

  2. Bone lead levels and lead isotope ratios in red grouse from Scottish and Yorkshire moors

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Thomas, Vernon G., E-mail: vthomas@uoguelph.ca [Department of Integrative Biology, College of Biological Science, University of Guelph, Guelph, Ontario, N1G 2W1 (Canada); Scheuhammer, Anton M.; Bond, Della E. [Metals Toxicology Laboratory, National Wildlife Research Centre, Carleton University, Ottawa, Ontario, K1A 0H3 (Canada)

    2009-05-15

    Leg and foot bones of adult and juvenile red grouse (Lagopus lagopus scoticus) were collected from hunter-shot birds on two Scottish estates (Glendye and Invermark) and one Yorkshire estate in September, 2003. The lead content of bones was measured by atomic absorption spectrophotometry, and corresponding stable lead isotopes (Pb204, 206, 207, 208) by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry. At the Glendye (N = 111) and Invermark (N = 85) estates, relatively few birds (5.4% and 3.5%, respectively) had highly elevated bone lead concentrations (> 20 mug/g dry weight). In bones of these highly exposed birds, a combination of Pb206:Pb207 and Pb208:Pb207ratios was consistent with ingestion of lead gunshot available in Europe. By contrast, Yorkshire grouse experienced a high incidence (65.8%) of bone lead > 20 mug/g. The Pb206:Pb207 and Pb208:Pb207ratios in bones of these highly exposed birds were consistent with a combined exposure to ingested lead gunshot and lead from galena mining in the region. Lead isotope ratios also indicated that lead from UK gasoline combustion and fallout from atmospheric particles was not a likely source of elevated lead in bones of either Scottish or Yorkshire grouse. Suggested management options for the three moors include adopting nontoxic shot for all game shooting on the estates, allowing heather (Calluna vulgaris) vegetation to grow tall in lead shot fall-out zones to reduce physical access to high densities of lead shot already present, and provision of calcareous grit across moors to reduce lead assimilation from all ingested sources of lead.

  3. Bone lead levels and lead isotope ratios in red grouse from Scottish and Yorkshire moors

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Thomas, Vernon G.; Scheuhammer, Anton M.; Bond, Della E.

    2009-01-01

    Leg and foot bones of adult and juvenile red grouse (Lagopus lagopus scoticus) were collected from hunter-shot birds on two Scottish estates (Glendye and Invermark) and one Yorkshire estate in September, 2003. The lead content of bones was measured by atomic absorption spectrophotometry, and corresponding stable lead isotopes (Pb204, 206, 207, 208) by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry. At the Glendye (N = 111) and Invermark (N = 85) estates, relatively few birds (5.4% and 3.5%, respectively) had highly elevated bone lead concentrations (> 20 mug/g dry weight). In bones of these highly exposed birds, a combination of Pb206:Pb207 and Pb208:Pb207ratios was consistent with ingestion of lead gunshot available in Europe. By contrast, Yorkshire grouse experienced a high incidence (65.8%) of bone lead > 20 mug/g. The Pb206:Pb207 and Pb208:Pb207ratios in bones of these highly exposed birds were consistent with a combined exposure to ingested lead gunshot and lead from galena mining in the region. Lead isotope ratios also indicated that lead from UK gasoline combustion and fallout from atmospheric particles was not a likely source of elevated lead in bones of either Scottish or Yorkshire grouse. Suggested management options for the three moors include adopting nontoxic shot for all game shooting on the estates, allowing heather (Calluna vulgaris) vegetation to grow tall in lead shot fall-out zones to reduce physical access to high densities of lead shot already present, and provision of calcareous grit across moors to reduce lead assimilation from all ingested sources of lead.

  4. Greater Sage-Grouse Habitat Use and Population Demographics at the Simpson Ridge Wind Resource Area, Carbon County, Wyoming

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gregory D. Johnson; Chad W. LeBeau; Ryan Nielsen; Troy Rintz; Jamey Eddy; Matt Holloran

    2012-03-27

    This study was conducted to obtain baseline data on use of the proposed Simpson Ridge Wind Resource Area (SRWRA) in Carbon County, Wyoming by greater sage-grouse. The first two study years were designed to determine pre-construction seasonally selected habitats and population-level vital rates (productivity and survival). The presence of an existing wind energy facility in the project area, the PacifiCorp Seven Mile Hill (SMH) project, allowed us to obtain some information on initial sage-grouse response to wind turbines the first two years following construction. To our knowledge these are the first quantitative data on sage-grouse response to an existing wind energy development. This report presents results of the first two study years (April 1, 2009 through March 30, 2011). This study was selected for continued funding by the National Wind Coordinating Collaborative Sage-Grouse Collaborative (NWCC-SGC) and has been ongoing since March 30, 2011. Future reports summarizing results of this research will be distributed through the NWCC-SGC. To investigate population trends through time, we determined the distribution and numbers of males using leks throughout the study area, which included a 4-mile radius buffer around the SRWRA. Over the 2-year study, 116 female greater sage-grouse were captured by spotlighting and use of hoop nets on roosts surrounding leks during the breeding period. Radio marked birds were located anywhere from twice a week to once a month, depending on season. All radio-locations were classified to season. We developed predictor variables used to predict success of fitness parameters and relative probability of habitat selection within the SRWRA and SMH study areas. Anthropogenic features included paved highways, overhead transmission lines, wind turbines and turbine access roads. Environmental variables included vegetation and topography features. Home ranges were estimated using a kernel density estimator. We developed resource selection

  5. 78 FR 65700 - Notice of Availability of the Utah Greater Sage-Grouse Draft Land Use Plan Amendments and...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-11-01

    .../Garfield/Antimony, Pinyon, Warm Springs, House Range, Pony Express, Box Elder, Randolph, Park City, and...) Pinyon Management Framework Plan (MFP) (1978) Warm Springs RMP (1987) House Range RMP (1987) Pony Express... lands identified as having the highest value to maintaining sustainable Greater Sage-Grouse populations...

  6. Evaluation of the genetic distinctiveness of Greater Sage-grouse in the Bi-State Planning Area

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oyler-McCance, Sara J.; Casazza, Michael L.

    2011-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to further characterize a distinct population of Greater Sage-grouse: the population located along the border between Nevada and California (Bi-State Planning Area) and centered around the Mono Basin. This population was previously determined to be genetically distinct from other Greater Sage-grouse populations across their range. Previous genetic work focused on characterizing genetic variation across the species' range and thereby used a coarse sampling approach for species characterization. The goal of this study was to investigate this population further by obtaining samples from breeding locations within the population and analyzing those samples with the same mitochondrial and microsatellite loci used in previous studies. Blood samples were collected in six locations within the Bi-State Planning Area. Genetic data from subpopulations were then compared with each other and also with two populations outside of the Bi-State Planning Area. Particular attention was paid to subpopulation boundaries and internal dynamics by drawing comparisons among particular regions within the Bi-State Planning Area and regions proximal to it. All newly sampled subpopulations contained mitochondrial haplotypes and allele frequencies that were consistent with the genetically unique Bi-State (Mono Basin) Greater Sage-grouse described previously. This reinforces the fact that this group of Greater Sage-grouse is genetically unique and warrants special attention. Maintaining the genetic integrity of this population could protect the evolutionary potential of this population of Greater Sage-grouse. Additionally, the White Mountains subpopulation was found to be significantly distinct from all other Bi-State subpopulations.

  7. Using resistance and resilience concepts to reduce impacts of annual grasses and altered fire regimes on the sagebrush ecosystem and sage-grouse- A strategic multi-scale approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chambers, Jeanne C.; Pyke, David A.; Maestas, Jeremy D.; Boyd, Chad S.; Campbell, Steve; Espinosa, Shawn; Havlina, Doug; Mayer, Kenneth F.; Wuenschel, Amarina

    2014-01-01

    This Report provides a strategic approach for conservation of sagebrush ecosystems and Greater Sage- Grouse (sage-grouse) that focuses specifically on habitat threats caused by invasive annual grasses and altered fire regimes. It uses information on factors that influence (1) sagebrush ecosystem resilience to disturbance and resistance to invasive annual grasses and (2) distribution, relative abundance, and persistence of sage-grouse populations to develop management strategies at both landscape and site scales. A sage-grouse habitat matrix links relative resilience and resistance of sagebrush ecosystems with sage-grouse habitat requirements for landscape cover of sagebrush to help decision makers assess risks and determine appropriate management strategies at landscape scales. Focal areas for management are assessed by overlaying matrix components with sage-grouse Priority Areas for Conservation (PACs), breeding bird densities, and specific habitat threats. Decision tools are discussed for determining the suitability of focal areas for treatment and the most appropriate management treatments.

  8. Environmental Impact Research Program. Ruffed Grouse (Bonasa umbellus) Section 4.1.1, US Army Corps of Engineers Wildlife Resources Management Manual.

    Science.gov (United States)

    1986-07-01

    tors in most populations (Edminster 1954, Gullion and Marshall 1968). However, hunting may depress grouse numbers on areas that receive intensive...in the diversity of ruffed grouse diets. Clover and other green leafy material and the fruits of Arctostaphylos, cranberry , and meadow rue contribute...Christmas fern Polystichum acrostichoides Clover Trifoliwn spp. Cranberry Viburnum edule Dandelion Taraxaum spp. Dogwood Corfus spp. Douglas fir Pseudotsuga

  9. 78 FR 65936 - Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Proposed Endangered Status for Gunnison Sage...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-11-04

    ... and Plants; Proposed Endangered Status for Gunnison Sage-Grouse and Proposed Designation of Critical Habitat for Gunnison Sage-Grouse AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior. ACTION: Proposed rule... rules to list the Gunnison sage-grouse (Centrocercus minimus) as endangered and to designate critical...

  10. 78 FR 2539 - Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Designation of Critical Habitat for Gunnison Sage...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-01-11

    ... Gunnison Sage-Grouse; Proposed Rule #0;#0;Federal Register / Vol. 78 , No. 8 / Friday, January 11, 2013...; Designation of Critical Habitat for Gunnison Sage-Grouse AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior. ACTION... the Gunnison sage-grouse (Centrocercus minimus) under the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended...

  11. Cheatgrass percent cover change: Comparing recent estimates to climate change − Driven predictions in the Northern Great Basin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boyte, Stephen P.; Wylie, Bruce K.; Major, Donald J.

    2016-01-01

    Cheatgrass (Bromus tectorum L.) is a highly invasive species in the Northern Great Basin that helps decrease fire return intervals. Fire fragments the shrub steppe and reduces its capacity to provide forage for livestock and wildlife and habitat critical to sagebrush obligates. Of particular interest is the greater sage grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus), an obligate whose populations have declined so severely due, in part, to increases in cheatgrass and fires that it was considered for inclusion as an endangered species. Remote sensing technologies and satellite archives help scientists monitor terrestrial vegetation globally, including cheatgrass in the Northern Great Basin. Along with geospatial analysis and advanced spatial modeling, these data and technologies can identify areas susceptible to increased cheatgrass cover and compare these with greater sage grouse priority areas for conservation (PAC). Future climate models forecast a warmer and wetter climate for the Northern Great Basin, which likely will force changing cheatgrass dynamics. Therefore, we examine potential climate-caused changes to cheatgrass. Our results indicate that future cheatgrass percent cover will remain stable over more than 80% of the study area when compared with recent estimates, and higher overall cheatgrass cover will occur with slightly more spatial variability. The land area projected to increase or decrease in cheatgrass cover equals 18% and 1%, respectively, making an increase in fire disturbances in greater sage grouse habitat likely. Relative susceptibility measures, created by integrating cheatgrass percent cover and temporal standard deviation datasets, show that potential increases in future cheatgrass cover match future projections. This discovery indicates that some greater sage grouse PACs for conservation could be at heightened risk of fire disturbance. Multiple factors will affect future cheatgrass cover including changes in precipitation timing and totals and

  12. Combined effects of energy development and disease on greater sage-grouse.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rebecca L Taylor

    Full Text Available Species of conservation concern are increasingly threatened by multiple, anthropogenic stressors which are outside their evolutionary experience. Greater sage-grouse are highly susceptible to the impacts of two such stressors: oil and gas (energy development and West Nile virus (WNv. However, the combined effects of these stressors and their potential interactions have not been quantified. We used lek (breeding ground counts across a landscape encompassing extensive local and regional variation in the intensity of energy development to quantify the effects of energy development on lek counts, in years with widespread WNv outbreaks and in years without widespread outbreaks. We then predicted the effects of well density and WNv outbreak years on sage-grouse in northeast Wyoming. Absent an outbreak year, drilling an undeveloped landscape to a high permitting level (3.1 wells/km² resulted in a 61% reduction in the total number of males counted in northeast Wyoming (total count. This was similar in magnitude to the 55% total count reduction that resulted from an outbreak year alone. However, energy-associated reductions in the total count resulted from a decrease in the mean count at active leks, whereas outbreak-associated reductions resulted from a near doubling of the lek inactivity rate (proportion of leks with a last count = 0. Lek inactivity quadrupled when 3.1 wells/km² was combined with an outbreak year, compared to no energy development and no outbreak. Conservation measures should maintain sagebrush landscapes large and intact enough so that leks are not chronically reduced in size due to energy development, and therefore vulnerable to becoming inactive due to additional stressors.

  13. Present and future thermal environments available to Sharp-tailed Grouse in an intact grassland.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Edward J Raynor

    Full Text Available Better understanding animal ecology in terms of thermal habitat use has become a focus of ecological studies, in large part due to the predicted temperature increases associated with global climate change. To further our knowledge on how ground-nesting endotherms respond to thermal landscapes, we examined the thermal ecology of Sharp-tailed Grouse (Tympanuchus phasianellus during the nesting period. We measured site-specific iButton temperatures (TiB and vegetation characteristics at nest sites, nearby random sites, and landscape sites to assess thermal patterns at scales relevant to nesting birds. We asked if microhabitat vegetation characteristics at nest sites matched the characteristics that directed macrohabitat nest-site selection. Grouse selected sites sheltered by dense vegetation for nesting that moderated TiB on average up to 2.7°C more than available landscape sites. Successful nests were positioned in a way that reduced exposure to thermal extremes by as much as 4°C relative to failed nests with an overall mean daytime difference (±SE of 0.4 ±0.03°C. We found that macrohabitat nest-site selection was guided by dense vegetation cover and minimal bare ground as also seen at the microhabitat scale. Global climate projections for 2080 suggest that TiB at nest sites may approach temperatures currently avoided on the landscape, emphasizing a need for future conservation plans that acknowledge fine-scale thermal space in climate change scenarios. These data show that features of grassland landscapes can buffer organisms from unfavorable microclimatic conditions and highlight how thermal heterogeneity at the individual-level can drive decisions guiding nest site selection.

  14. Present and future thermal environments available to Sharp-tailed Grouse in an intact grassland.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raynor, Edward J; Powell, Larkin A; Schacht, Walter H

    2018-01-01

    Better understanding animal ecology in terms of thermal habitat use has become a focus of ecological studies, in large part due to the predicted temperature increases associated with global climate change. To further our knowledge on how ground-nesting endotherms respond to thermal landscapes, we examined the thermal ecology of Sharp-tailed Grouse (Tympanuchus phasianellus) during the nesting period. We measured site-specific iButton temperatures (TiB) and vegetation characteristics at nest sites, nearby random sites, and landscape sites to assess thermal patterns at scales relevant to nesting birds. We asked if microhabitat vegetation characteristics at nest sites matched the characteristics that directed macrohabitat nest-site selection. Grouse selected sites sheltered by dense vegetation for nesting that moderated TiB on average up to 2.7°C more than available landscape sites. Successful nests were positioned in a way that reduced exposure to thermal extremes by as much as 4°C relative to failed nests with an overall mean daytime difference (±SE) of 0.4 ±0.03°C. We found that macrohabitat nest-site selection was guided by dense vegetation cover and minimal bare ground as also seen at the microhabitat scale. Global climate projections for 2080 suggest that TiB at nest sites may approach temperatures currently avoided on the landscape, emphasizing a need for future conservation plans that acknowledge fine-scale thermal space in climate change scenarios. These data show that features of grassland landscapes can buffer organisms from unfavorable microclimatic conditions and highlight how thermal heterogeneity at the individual-level can drive decisions guiding nest site selection.

  15. Sharp-Tailed Grouse Nest Survival and Nest Predator Habitat Use in North Dakota's Bakken Oil Field.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paul C Burr

    Full Text Available Recent advancements in extraction technologies have resulted in rapid increases of gas and oil development across the United States and specifically in western North Dakota. This expansion of energy development has unknown influences on local wildlife populations and the ecological interactions within and among species. Our objectives for this study were to evaluate nest success and nest predator dynamics of sharp-tailed grouse (Tympanuchus phasianellus in two study sites that represented areas of high and low energy development intensities in North Dakota. During the summers of 2012 and 2013, we monitored 163 grouse nests using radio telemetry. Of these, 90 nests also were monitored using miniature cameras to accurately determine nest fates and identify nest predators. We simultaneously conducted predator surveys using camera scent stations and occupancy modeling to estimate nest predator occurrence at each site. American badgers (Taxidea taxus and striped skunks (Mephitis mephitis were the primary nest predators, accounting for 56.7% of all video recorded nest depredations. Nests in our high intensity gas and oil area were 1.95 times more likely to succeed compared to our minimal intensity area. Camera monitored nests were 2.03 times more likely to succeed than non-camera monitored nests. Occupancy of mammalian nest predators was 6.9 times more likely in our study area of minimal gas and oil intensity compared to the high intensity area. Although only a correlative study, our results suggest energy development may alter the predator community, thereby increasing nest success for sharp-tailed grouse in areas of intense development, while adjacent areas may have increased predator occurrence and reduced nest success. Our study illustrates the potential influences of energy development on the nest predator-prey dynamics of sharp-tailed grouse in western North Dakota and the complexity of evaluating such impacts on wildlife.

  16. Using resistance and resilience concepts to reduce impacts of invasive annual grasses and altered fire regimes on the sagebrush ecosystem and greater sage-grouse: A strategic multi-scale approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jeanne C. Chambers; David A. Pyke; Jeremy D. Maestas; Mike Pellant; Chad S. Boyd; Steven B. Campbell; Shawn Espinosa; Douglas W. Havlina; Kenneth E. Mayer; Amarina Wuenschel

    2014-01-01

    This Report provides a strategic approach for conservation of sagebrush ecosystems and Greater Sage- Grouse (sage-grouse) that focuses specifically on habitat threats caused by invasive annual grasses and altered fire regimes. It uses information on factors that influence (1) sagebrush ecosystem resilience to disturbance and resistance to invasive annual grasses and (2...

  17. Quantifying functional connectivity: The role of breeding habitat, abundance, and landscape features on range-wide gene flow in sage-grouse

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jeffrey R. Row; Kevin E. Doherty; Todd B. Cross; Michael K. Schwartz; Sara Oyler-McCance; Dave E. Naugle; Steven T. Knick; Bradley C. Fedy

    2018-01-01

    Functional connectivity, quantified using landscape genetics, can inform conservation through the identification of factors linking genetic structure to landscape mechanisms. We used breeding habitat metrics, landscape attributes and indices of grouse abundance, to compare fit between structural connectivity and genetic differentiation within five long‐established Sage...

  18. Genetic impoverishment of the last black grouse (Tetrao tetrix) population in the Netherlands: detectable only with a reference from the past

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Larsson, J.K.; Jansman, H.A.H.; Segelbacher, G.; Höglund, J.; Koelewijn, H.P.

    2008-01-01

    We have studied a small isolated population of black grouse (Tetrao tetrix) in the Netherlands to examine the impact of isolation and reduction in numbers on genetic diversity. We compared the genetic diversity in the last extant Dutch population with Dutch museum samples and three other black

  19. Dynamic Disturbance Processes Create Dynamic Lek Site Selection in a Prairie Grouse.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Torre J Hovick

    Full Text Available It is well understood that landscape processes can affect habitat selection patterns, movements, and species persistence. These selection patterns may be altered or even eliminated as a result of changes in disturbance regimes and a concomitant management focus on uniform, moderate disturbance across landscapes. To assess how restored landscape heterogeneity influences habitat selection patterns, we examined 21 years (1991, 1993-2012 of Greater Prairie-Chicken (Tympanuchus cupido lek location data in tallgrass prairie with restored fire and grazing processes. Our study took place at The Nature Conservancy's Tallgrass Prairie Preserve located at the southern extent of Flint Hills in northeastern Oklahoma. We specifically addressed stability of lek locations in the context of the fire-grazing interaction, and the environmental factors influencing lek locations. We found that lek locations were dynamic in a landscape with interacting fire and grazing. While previous conservation efforts have treated leks as stable with high site fidelity in static landscapes, a majority of lek locations in our study (i.e., 65% moved by nearly one kilometer on an annual basis in this dynamic setting. Lek sites were in elevated areas with low tree cover and low road density. Additionally, lek site selection was influenced by an interaction of fire and patch edge, indicating that in recently burned patches, leks were located near patch edges. These results suggest that dynamic and interactive processes such as fire and grazing that restore heterogeneity to grasslands do influence habitat selection patterns in prairie grouse, a phenomenon that is likely to apply throughout the Greater Prairie-Chicken's distribution when dynamic processes are restored. As conservation moves toward restoring dynamic historic disturbance patterns, it will be important that siting and planning of anthropogenic structures (e.g., wind energy, oil and gas and management plans not view lek

  20. The role of parasite-driven selection in shaping landscape genomic structure in red grouse (Lagopus lagopus scotica).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wenzel, Marius A; Douglas, Alex; James, Marianne C; Redpath, Steve M; Piertney, Stuart B

    2016-01-01

    Landscape genomics promises to provide novel insights into how neutral and adaptive processes shape genome-wide variation within and among populations. However, there has been little emphasis on examining whether individual-based phenotype-genotype relationships derived from approaches such as genome-wide association (GWAS) manifest themselves as a population-level signature of selection in a landscape context. The two may prove irreconcilable as individual-level patterns become diluted by high levels of gene flow and complex phenotypic or environmental heterogeneity. We illustrate this issue with a case study that examines the role of the highly prevalent gastrointestinal nematode Trichostrongylus tenuis in shaping genomic signatures of selection in red grouse (Lagopus lagopus scotica). Individual-level GWAS involving 384 SNPs has previously identified five SNPs that explain variation in T. tenuis burden. Here, we examine whether these same SNPs display population-level relationships between T. tenuis burden and genetic structure across a small-scale landscape of 21 sites with heterogeneous parasite pressure. Moreover, we identify adaptive SNPs showing signatures of directional selection using F(ST) outlier analysis and relate population- and individual-level patterns of multilocus neutral and adaptive genetic structure to T. tenuis burden. The five candidate SNPs for parasite-driven selection were neither associated with T. tenuis burden on a population level, nor under directional selection. Similarly, there was no evidence of parasite-driven selection in SNPs identified as candidates for directional selection. We discuss these results in the context of red grouse ecology and highlight the broader consequences for the utility of landscape genomics approaches for identifying signatures of selection. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  1. Petrology and geochemistry of the Grouse Canyon Member of the Belted Range Tuff, Rock-Mechanics Drift, U12g Tunnel, Nevada Test Site

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Connolly, J.R.; Mansker, W.L.; Hicks, R.; Allen, C.C.; Husler, J.; Keil, K.; Lappin, A.R.

    1983-04-01

    G-Tunnel at Nevada Test Site (NTS) is the site of thermal and thermomechanical experiments examining the feasibility of emplacing heat-producing nuclear wastes in silicic tuffs. This report describes the general stratigraphy, mineralogy, and bulk chemistry of welded portions of the Grouse Canyon Member of the Belted Range Tuff, the unit in which most of these experiments will be performed. The geologic characteristics of the Grouse Canyon Member are compared with those of the Topopah Spring Member of the Paintbrush Tuff, presently the preferred horizon for an actual waste repository at Yucca Mountain, near the southwest boundary of Nevada Test Site. This comparison suggests that test results obtained in welded tuff from G-Tunnel are applicable, with limitations, to evaluation of the Topopah Spring Member at Yucca Mountain

  2. Quantifying fenbendazole and its metabolites in self-medicating wild red grouse Lagopus lagopus scoticus using an HPLC-MS-MS approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adam, Aileen; Webster, Lucy M I; Mullen, William; Keller, Lukas F; Johnson, Paul C D

    2011-05-11

    On red grouse estates in the UK the nematode parasite Trichostrongylus tenuis is often controlled by application of grit medicated with the anthelmintic fenbendazole (FBZ). To date, assessment of the efficacy has been inhibited by the inability to quantify uptake of FBZ by the birds. We have developed a simple and sensitive HPLC-MS-MS method for detecting and quantifying FBZ and its metabolites from a 300 mg sample of red grouse liver. This method could be used to improve the efficacy of medicated grit treatment by allowing the identification of conditions and application methods that optimize the uptake of FBZ. With the necessary modifications, our method will also be applicable to other wildlife species where self-medication is used for parasite control. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  3. Susceptibility and antibody response of Vesper Sparrows (Pooecetes gramineus) to West Nile virus: A potential amplification host in sagebrush-grassland habitat

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hofmeister, Erik K.; Dusek, Robert J.; Fassbinder-Orth, Carol; Owen, Benjamin; Franson, J. Christian

    2016-01-01

    West Nile virus (WNV) spread to the US western plains states in 2003, when a significant mortality event attributed to WNV occurred in Greater Sage-grouse ( Centrocercus urophasianus ). The role of avian species inhabiting sagebrush in the amplification of WNV in arid and semiarid regions of the North America is unknown. We conducted an experimental WNV challenge study in Vesper Sparrows ( Pooecetes gramineus ), a species common to sagebrush and grassland habitats found throughout much of North America. We found Vesper Sparrows to be moderately susceptible to WNV, developing viremia considered sufficient to transmit WNV to feeding mosquitoes, but the majority of birds were capable of surviving infection and developing a humoral immune response to the WNV nonstructural 1 and envelope proteins. Despite clearance of viremia, after 6 mo, WNV was detected molecularly in three birds and cultured from one bird. Surviving Vesper Sparrows were resistant to reinfection 6 mo after the initial challenge. Vesper sparrows could play a role in the amplification of WNV in sagebrush habitat and other areas of their range, but rapid clearance of WNV may limit their importance as competent amplification hosts of WNV.

  4. Selection of anthropogenic features and vegetation characteristics by nesting Common Ravens in the sagebrush ecosystem

    Science.gov (United States)

    Howe, Kristy B.; Coates, Peter S.; Delehanty, David J.

    2014-01-01

    Common Raven (Corvus corax) numbers and distribution are increasing throughout the sagebrush steppe, influencing avian communities in complex ways. Anthropogenic structures are thought to increase raven populations by providing food and nesting subsidies, which is cause for concern because ravens are important nest predators of sensitive species, including Greater Sage-Grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus). During 2007–2009, we located raven nests in southeastern Idaho and conducted a resource selection analysis. We measured variables at multiple spatial scales for 72 unique nest locations, including landscape-level vegetation characteristics and anthropogenic structures. Using generalized linear mixed models and an information-theoretic approach, we found a 31% decrease in the odds of nesting by ravens for every 1 km increase in distance away from a transmission line. Furthermore, a 100-m increase in distance away from the edge of two different land cover types decreased the odds of nesting by 20%, and an increase in the amount of edge by 1 km within an area of 102.1 ha centered on the nest increased the odds of nesting by 49%. A post hoc analysis revealed that ravens were most likely to nest near edges of adjoining big sagebrush (Artemisia tridentata) and land cover types that were associated with direct human disturbance or fire. These findings contribute to our understanding of raven expansion into rural environments and could be used to make better-informed conservation decisions, especially in the face of increasing renewable energy development.

  5. Progress Report: Stratton Ecological Research Site - An Experimental Approach to Assess Effects of Various Grazing Treatments on Vegetation and Wildlife Communities Across Managed Burns and Habitat Controls

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erickson, Heidi J.; Aldridge, Cameron L.; Hobbs, N. Thompson

    2009-01-01

    Understanding how management practices affect wildlife is fundamental to wise decisions for conservation of public lands. Prescribed fire and grazing timing are two management tools frequently used within publicly owned sagebrush ecosystems. We conducted a variety of surveys in order to assess the impacts of grazing timing strategies (early summer before peak green-up, mid-summer at peak green-up, and late summer after peak green-up) in conjunction with prescribed fire on avian and small mammal populations in a high-elevation sagebrush ecosystem. Avian surveys resulted in a large detection sample size for three bird species: Brewer's sparrow (Spizella breweri), horned lark (Eremophila alpestris), and vesper sparrow (Pooecetes gramineus). Brewer's sparrows had the lowest number of detections within the mid-summer grazing treatment compared to early and late summer grazing treatments, while horned larks and vesper sparrows had higher detection frequencies within the late summer grazing treatment. Summer and fall sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) pellet counts revealed that the greatest over-winter and over-summer use by sage-grouse occurred within the early summer grazing treatment with minimal use of burn treatment areas across all grazing treatments. Deer-mice (Peromyscus maniculatus) represented approximately 90 percent of small mammals captured and were most prevalent within the mid-summer grazing treatment. Sagebrush cover was greatest within the mid-summer grazing treatment. We monitored 50 and 103 nests in 2007 and 2008, respectively. The apparent success rate for shrub-obligate nesting species was 58 percent in 2007 and 63 percent in 2008. This research will support management of sagebrush ecosystems by providing public land managers with direct comparisons of wildlife response to management regimes.

  6. A social-ecological impact assessment for public lands management: application of a conceptual and methodological framework

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amanda L. Bentley Brymer

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available According to the U.S. National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA, federal action to manipulate habitat for species conservation requires an environmental impact statement, which should integrate natural, physical, economic, and social sciences in planning and decision making. Nonetheless, most impact assessments focus disproportionately on physical or ecological impacts rather than integrating ecological and socioeconomic components. We developed a participatory social-ecological impact assessment (SEIA that addresses the requirements of NEPA and integrates social and ecological concepts for impact assessments. We cooperated with the Bureau of Land Management in Idaho, USA on a project designed to restore habitat for the Greater Sage-Grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus. We employed questionnaires, workshop dialogue, and participatory mapping exercises with stakeholders to identify potential environmental changes and subsequent impacts expected to result from the removal of western juniper (Juniperus occidentalis. Via questionnaires and workshop dialogue, stakeholders identified 46 environmental changes and associated positive or negative impacts to people and communities in Owyhee County, Idaho. Results of the participatory mapping exercises showed that the spatial distribution of social, economic, and ecological values throughout Owyhee County are highly associated with the two main watersheds, wilderness areas, and the historic town of Silver City. Altogether, the SEIA process revealed that perceptions of project scale varied among participants, highlighting the need for specificity about spatial and temporal scales. Overall, the SEIA generated substantial information concerning potential impacts associated with habitat treatments for Greater Sage-Grouse. The SEIA is transferable to other land management and conservation contexts because it supports holistic understanding and framing of connections between humans and ecosystems. By applying

  7. Integration of genetic and demographic data to assess population risk in a continuously distributed species

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fedy, Bradley C.; Row, Jeffery R.; Oyler-McCance, Sara J.

    2017-01-01

    The identification and demographic assessment of biologically meaningful populations is fundamental to species’ ecology and management. Although genetic tools are used frequently to identify populations, studies often do not incorporate demographic data to understand their respective population trends. We used genetic data to define subpopulations in a continuously distributed species. We assessed demographic independence and variation in population trends across the distribution. Additionally, we identified potential barriers to gene flow among subpopulations. We sampled greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) leks from across their range (≈175,000 Km2) in Wyoming and amplified DNA at 14 microsatellite loci for 1761 samples. Subsequently, we assessed population structure in unrelated individuals (n = 872) by integrating results from multiple Bayesian clustering approaches and used the boundaries to inform our assessment of long-term population trends and lek activity over the period of 1995–2013. We identified four genetic clusters of which two northern ones showed demographic independence from the others. Trends in population size for the northwest subpopulation were statistically different from the other three genetic clusters and the northeast and southwest subpopulations demonstrated a general trend of increasing proportion of inactive leks over time. Population change from 1996 to 2012 suggested population growth in the southern subpopulations and decline, or neutral, change in the northern subpopulations. We suggest that sage-grouse subpopulations in northern Wyoming are at greater risk of extirpation than the southern subpopulations due to smaller census and effective population sizes and higher variability within subpopulations. Our research is an example of incorporating genetic and demographic data and provides guidance on the identification of subpopulations of conservation concern.

  8. Using object-based image analysis to conduct high-resolution conifer extraction at regional spatial scales

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coates, Peter S.; Gustafson, K. Benjamin; Roth, Cali L.; Chenaille, Michael P.; Ricca, Mark A.; Mauch, Kimberly; Sanchez-Chopitea, Erika; Kroger, Travis J.; Perry, William M.; Casazza, Michael L.

    2017-08-10

    The distribution and abundance of pinyon (Pinus monophylla) and juniper (Juniperus osteosperma, J. occidentalis) trees (hereinafter, "pinyon-juniper") in sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) ecosystems of the Great Basin in the Western United States has increased substantially since the late 1800s. Distributional expansion and infill of pinyon-juniper into sagebrush ecosystems threatens the ecological function and economic viability of these ecosystems within the Great Basin, and is now a major contemporary challenge facing land and wildlife managers. Particularly, pinyon-juniper encroachment into intact sagebrush ecosystems has been identified as a primary threat facing populations of greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus; hereinafter, "sage-grouse"), which is a sagebrush obligate species. Even seemingly innocuous scatterings of isolated pinyon-juniper in an otherwise intact sagebrush landscape can negatively affect survival and reproduction of sage-grouse. Therefore, accurate and high-resolution maps of pinyon-juniper distribution and abundance (indexed by canopy cover) across broad geographic extents would help guide land management decisions that better target areas for pinyon-juniper removal projects (for example, fuel reduction, habitat improvement for sage-grouse, and other sagebrush species) and facilitate science that further quantifies ecological effects of pinyon-juniper encroachment on sage-grouse populations and sagebrush ecosystem processes. Hence, we mapped pinyon-juniper (referred to as conifers for actual mapping) at a 1 × 1-meter (m) high resolution across the entire range of previously mapped sage-grouse habitat in Nevada and northeastern California.We used digital orthophoto quad tiles from National Agriculture Imagery Program (2010, 2013) as base imagery, and then classified conifers using automated feature extraction methodology with the program Feature Analyst™. This method relies on machine learning algorithms that extract features from

  9. Syn-extensional plutonism and peak metamorphism in the albion-raft river-grouse creek metamorphic core complex

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strickland, A.; Miller, E.L.; Wooden, J.L.; Kozdon, R.; Valley, J.W.

    2011-01-01

    The Cassia plutonic complex (CPC) is a group of variably deformed, Oligocene granitic plutons exposed in the lower plate of the Albion-Raft River- Grouse Creek (ARG) metamorphic core complex of Idaho and Utah. The plutons range from granodiorite to garnet-bearing, leucogranite, and during intrusion, sillimanite- grade peak metamorphism and ductile attenuation occurred in the country rocks and normal-sense, amphibolite-grade deformation took place along the Middle Mountain shear zone. U-Pb zircon geochronology from three variably deformed plutons exposed in the lower plate of the ARG metamorphic core complex revealed that each zircon is comprised of inherited cores (dominantly late Archean) and Oligocene igneous overgrowths. Within each pluton, a spread of concordant ages from the Oligocene zircon overgrowths is interpreted as zircon recycling within a long-lived magmatic system. The plutons of the CPC have very low negative whole rock ??Nd values of -26 to -35, and initial Sr values of 0.714 to 0.718, consistent with an ancient, crustal source. Oxygen isotope ratios of the Oligocene zircon overgrowths from the CPC have an average ??18O value of 5.40 ?? 0.63 permil (2SD, n = 65) with a slight trend towards higher ??18O values through time. The ??18O values of the inherited cores of the zircons are more variable at 5.93 ?? 1.51 permil (2SD, n = 29). Therefore, we interpret the plutons of the CPC as derived, at least in part, from melting Archean crust based on the isotope geochemistry. In situ partial melting of the exposed Archean basement that was intruded by the Oligocene plutons of the CPC is excluded as the source for the CPC based on field relationships, age and geochemistry. Correlations between Ti and Hf concentrations in zircons from the CPC suggest that the magmatic system may have become hotter (higher Ti concentration in zircon) and less evolved (lower Hf in zircon concentration) through time. Therefore, the CPC represents prolonged or episodic magmatism

  10. Preliminary isostatic gravity map of the Grouse Creek and east part of the Jackpot 30 by 60 quadrangles, Box Elder County, Utah, and Cassia County, Idaho

    Science.gov (United States)

    Langenheim, Victoria; Willis, H.; Athens, N.D.; Chuchel, Bruce A.; Roza, J.; Hiscock, H.I.; Hardwick, C.L.; Kraushaar, S.M.; Knepprath, N.E.; Rosario, Jose J.

    2013-01-01

    A new isostatic residual gravity map of the northwest corner of Utah is based on compilation of preexisting data and new data collected by the Utah and United States Geological Surveys. Pronounced gravity lows occur over Junction, Grouse Creek, and upper Raft River Valleys, indicating significant thickness of low-density Tertiary sedimentary rocks and deposits. Gravity highs coincide with exposures of dense pre-Cenozoic rocks in the Raft River Mountains. Higher values in the eastern part of the map may be produced in part by deeper crustal density variations or crustal thinning. Steep linear gravity gradients coincide with mapped Neogene normal faults near Goose Creek and may define basin-bounding faults concealed beneath Junction and Upper Raft River Valleys.

  11. Assessing Greater Sage-Grouse Selection of Brood-Rearing Habitat Using Remotely-Sensed Imagery: Can Readily Available High-Resolution Imagery Be Used to Identify Brood-Rearing Habitat Across a Broad Landscape?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Westover, Matthew; Baxter, Jared; Baxter, Rick; Day, Casey; Jensen, Ryan; Petersen, Steve; Larsen, Randy

    2016-01-01

    Greater sage-grouse populations have decreased steadily since European settlement in western North America. Reduced availability of brood-rearing habitat has been identified as a limiting factor for many populations. We used radio-telemetry to acquire locations of sage-grouse broods from 1998 to 2012 in Strawberry Valley, Utah. Using these locations and remotely-sensed NAIP (National Agricultural Imagery Program) imagery, we 1) determined which characteristics of brood-rearing habitat could be used in widely available, high resolution imagery 2) assessed the spatial extent at which sage-grouse selected brood-rearing habitat, and 3) created a predictive habitat model to identify areas of preferred brood-rearing habitat. We used AIC model selection to evaluate support for a list of variables derived from remotely-sensed imagery. We examined the relationship of these explanatory variables at three spatial extents (45, 200, and 795 meter radii). Our top model included 10 variables (percent shrub, percent grass, percent tree, percent paved road, percent riparian, meters of sage/tree edge, meters of riparian/tree edge, distance to tree, distance to transmission lines, and distance to permanent structures). Variables from each spatial extent were represented in our top model with the majority being associated with the larger (795 meter) spatial extent. When applied to our study area, our top model predicted 75% of naïve brood locations suggesting reasonable success using this method and widely available NAIP imagery. We encourage application of our methodology to other sage-grouse populations and species of conservation concern.

  12. Science framework for conservation and restoration of the sagebrush biome: Linking the Department of the Interior’s Integrated Rangeland Fire Management Strategy to long-term strategic conservation actions, Part 1. Science basis and applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chambers, Jeanne C.; Beck, Jeffrey L.; Bradford, John B.; Bybee, Jared; Campbell, Steve; Carlson, John; Christiansen, Thomas J; Clause, Karen J.; Collins, Gail; Crist, Michele R.; Dinkins, Jonathan B.; Doherty, Kevin E.; Edwards, Fred; Espinosa, Shawn; Griffin, Kathleen A.; Griffin, Paul; Haas, Jessica R.; Hanser, Steven E.; Havlina, Douglas W.; Henke, Kenneth F.; Hennig, Jacob D.; Joyce, Linda A; Kilkenny, Francis F.; Kulpa, Sarah M; Kurth, Laurie L; Maestas, Jeremy D; Manning, Mary E.; Mayer, Kenneth E.; Mealor, Brian A.; McCarthy, Clinton; Pellant, Mike; Perea, Marco A.; Prentice, Karen L.; Pyke, David A.; Wiechman , Lief A.; Wuenschel, Amarina

    2017-01-01

    The Science Framework is intended to link the Department of the Interior’s Integrated Rangeland Fire Management Strategy with long-term strategic conservation actions in the sagebrush biome. The Science Framework provides a multiscale approach for prioritizing areas for management and determining effective management strategies within the sagebrush biome. The emphasis is on sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) ecosystems and Greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus). The approach provided in the Science Framework links sagebrush ecosystem resilience to disturbance and resistance to nonnative, invasive plant species to species habitat information based on the distribution and abundance of focal species. A geospatial process is presented that overlays information on ecosystem resilience and resistance, species habitats, and predominant threats and that can be used at the mid-scale to prioritize areas for management. A resilience and resistance habitat matrix is provided that can help decisionmakers evaluate risks and determine appropriate management strategies. Prioritized areas and management strategies can be refined by managers and stakeholders at the local scale based on higher resolution data and local knowledge. Decision tools are discussed for determining appropriate management actions for areas that are prioritized for management. Geospatial data, maps, and models are provided through the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) ScienceBase and Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Landscape Approach Data Portal. The Science Framework is intended to be adaptive and will be updated as additional data become available on other values and species at risk. It is anticipated that the Science Framework will be widely used to: (1) inform emerging strategies to conserve sagebrush ecosystems, sagebrush dependent species, and human uses of the sagebrush system, and (2) assist managers in prioritizing and planning on-the-ground restoration and mitigation actions across the sagebrush biome.

  13. Avian wildlife as sentinels of ecosystem health.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smits, Judit E G; Fernie, Kimberly J

    2013-05-01

    Birds have been widely used as sentinels of ecosystem health reflecting changes in habitat quality, increased incidence of disease, and exposure to and effects of chemical contaminants. Numerous studies addressing these issues focus on the breeding period, since hormonal, behavioural, reproductive, and developmental aspects of the health can be observed over a relatively short time-span. Many body systems within individuals are tightly integrated and interdependent, and can be affected by contaminant chemicals, disease, and habitat changes in complex ways. Animals higher in the food web will reflect cumulative effects of multiple stressors. Such features make birds ideal indicators for assessing environmental health in areas of environmental concern. Five case studies are presented, highlighting the use of different species which have provided insight into ecosystem sustainability, including (i) the consequences of anthropogenic disturbances of sagebrush habitat on the greater northern sage grouse Centrocercus urophasianus; (ii) the high prevalence of disease in very specific passerine species in the Canary Islands closely paralleling deterioration of formerly productive desert habitat and ensuing interspecific stressors; (iii) fractures, abnormal bone structure, and associated biochemical aberrations in nestling storks exposed to acidic tailings mud from a dyke rupture at an iron pyrite mine near Sevilla, Spain; (iv) newly presented data demonstrating biochemical changes in nestling peregrine falcons Falco peregrinus and associations with exposure to major chemical classes in the Great Lakes Basin of Canada; and (v) the variability in responses of tree swallows Tachycineta bicolor to contaminants, biological and meteorological challenges when breeding in the Athabasca oil sands. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. A conservation paradox in the Great Basin—Altering sagebrush landscapes with fuel breaks to reduce habitat loss from wildfire

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shinneman, Douglas J.; Aldridge, Cameron L.; Coates, Peter S.; Germino, Matthew J.; Pilliod, David S.; Vaillant, Nicole M.

    2018-03-15

    Interactions between fire and nonnative, annual plant species (that is, “the grass/fire cycle”) represent one of the greatest threats to sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) ecosystems and associated wildlife, including the greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus). In 2015, U.S. Department of the Interior called for a “science-based strategy to reduce the threat of large-scale rangeland fire to habitat for the greater sage-grouse and the sagebrush-steppe ecosystem.” An associated guidance document, the “Integrated Rangeland Fire Management Strategy Actionable Science Plan,” identified fuel breaks as high priority areas for scientific research. Fuel breaks are intended to reduce fire size and frequency, and potentially they can compartmentalize wildfire spatial distribution in a landscape. Fuel breaks are designed to reduce flame length, fireline intensity, and rates of fire spread in order to enhance firefighter access, improve response times, and provide safe and strategic anchor points for wildland fire-fighting activities. To accomplish these objectives, fuel breaks disrupt fuel continuity, reduce fuel accumulation, and (or) increase plants with high moisture content through the removal or modification of vegetation in strategically placed strips or blocks of land.Fuel breaks are being newly constructed, enhanced, or proposed across large areas of the Great Basin to reduce wildfire risk and to protect remaining sagebrush ecosystems (including greater sage-grouse habitat). These projects are likely to result in thousands of linear miles of fuel breaks that will have direct ecological effects across hundreds of thousands of acres through habitat loss and conversion. These projects may also affect millions of acres indirectly because of edge effects and habitat fragmentation created by networks of fuel breaks. Hence, land managers are often faced with a potentially paradoxical situation: the need to substantially alter sagebrush habitats with fuel breaks

  15. Molecular forensics in avian conservation: a DNA-based approach for identifying mammalian predators of ground-nesting birds and eggs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hopken, Matthew W; Orning, Elizabeth K; Young, Julie K; Piaggio, Antoinette J

    2016-01-07

    The greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) is a ground-nesting bird from the Northern Rocky Mountains and a species at risk of extinction in in multiple U.S. states and Canada. Herein we report results from a proof of concept that mitochondrial and nuclear DNAs from mammalian predator saliva could be non-invasively collected from depredated greater sage-grouse eggshells and carcasses and used for predator species identification. Molecular forensic approaches have been applied to identify predators from depredated remains as one strategy to better understand predator-prey dynamics and guide management strategies. This can aid conservation efforts by correctly identifying predators most likely to impact threatened and endangered species. DNA isolated from non-invasive samples around nesting sites (e.g. fecal or hair samples) is one method that can increase the success and accuracy of predator species identification when compared to relying on nest remains alone. Predator saliva DNA was collected from depredated eggshells and carcasses using swabs. We sequenced two partial fragments of two mitochondrial genes and obtained microsatellite genotypes using canid specific primers for species and individual identification, respectively. Using this multilocus approach we were able to identify predators, at least down to family, from 11 out of 14 nests (79%) and three out of seven carcasses (47%). Predators detected most frequently were canids (86%), while other taxa included rodents, a striped skunk, and cattle. We attempted to match the genotypes of individual coyotes obtained from eggshells and carcasses with those obtained from fecal samples and coyotes collected in the areas, but no genotype matches were found. Predation is a main cause of nest failure in ground-nesting birds and can impact reproduction and recruitment. To inform predator management for ground-nesting bird conservation, accurate identification of predator species is necessary. Considering

  16. The timing of tertiary metamorphism and deformation in the Albion-Raft River-Grouse Creek metamorphic core complex, Utah and Idaho

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strickland, A.; Miller, E.L.; Wooden, J.L.

    2011-01-01

    The Albion-Raft River-Grouse Creek metamorphic core complex of southern Idaho and northern Utah exposes 2.56-Ga orthogneisses and Neoproterozoic metasedimentary rocks that were intruded by 32-25-Ma granitic plutons. Pluton emplacement was contemporaneous with peak metamorphism, ductile thinning of the country rocks, and top-to-thewest, normal-sense shear along the Middle Mountain shear zone. Monazite and zircon from an attenuated stratigraphic section in the Middle Mountain were dated with U-Pb, using a SHRIMP-RG (reverse geometry) ion microprobe. Zircons from the deformed Archean gneiss preserve a crystallization age of 2532 ?? 33 Ma, while monazites range from 32.6 ?? 0.6 to 27.1 ?? 0.6 Ma. In the schist of the Upper Narrows, detrital zircons lack metamorphic overgrowths, and monazites produced discordant U-Pb ages that range from 52.8 ?? 0.6 to 37.5 ?? 0.3 Ma. From the structurally and stratigraphically highest unit sampled, the schist of Stevens Spring, narrow metamorphic rims on detrital zircons yield ages from 140-110 Ma, and monazite grains contained cores that yield an age of 141 ??2 Ma, whereas rims and some whole grains ranged from 35.5 ?? 0.5 to 30.0 ?? 0.4 Ma. A boudinaged pegmatite exposed in Basin Creek is deformed by the Middle Mountains shear zone and yields a monazite age of 27.6 ?? 0.2 Ma. We interpret these data to indicate two periods of monazite and metamorphic zircon growth: a poorly preserved Early Cretaceous period (???140 Ma) that is strongly overprinted by Oligocene metamorphism (???32-27 Ma) related to regional plutonism and extension. ?? 2011 by The University of Chicago.

  17. Science framework for the conservation and restoration strategy of DOI secretarial order 3336: Utilizing resilience and resistance concepts to assess threats to sagebrush ecosystems and greater sage-grouse, prioritize conservation and restoration actions, and inform management strategies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chambers, Jeanne C.; Campbell, Steve; Carlson, John; Beck, Jeffrey L.; Clause, Karen J.; Dinkins, Jonathan B.; Doherty, Kevin E.; Espinosa, Shawn; Griffin, Kathleen A.; Christiansen, Thomas J.; Crist, Michele R.; Hanser, Steven E.; Havlina, Douglas W.; Henke, Kenneth F.; Hennig, Jacob D.; Kurth, Laurie L.; Maestas, Jeremy D.; Mayer, Kenneth E.; Manning, Mary E.; Mealor, Brian A.; McCarthy, Clinton; Pellant, Mike; Prentice, Karen L.; Perea, Marco A.; Pyke, David A.; Wiechman , Lief A.; Wuenschel, Amarina

    2016-01-01

    The Science Framework for the Conservation and Restoration Strategy of the Department of the Interior, Secretarial Order 3336 (SO 3336), Rangeland Fire Prevention, Management and Restoration, provides a strategic, multiscale approach for prioritizing areas for management and determining effective management strategies across the sagebrush biome. The emphasis of this version is on sagebrush ecosystems and greater sage-grouse. The Science Framework uses a six step process in which sagebrush ecosystem resilience to disturbance and resistance to nonnative, invasive annual grasses is linked to species habitat information based on the distribution and abundance of focal species. The predominant ecosystem and anthropogenic threats are assessed, and a habitat matrix is developed that helps decision makers evaluate risks and determine appropriate management strategies at regional and local scales. Areas are prioritized for management action using a geospatial approach that overlays resilience and resistance, species habitat information, and predominant threats. Decision tools are discussed for determining the suitability of priority areas for management and the most appropriate management actions at regional to local scales. The Science Framework and geospatial crosscut are intended to complement the mitigation strategies associated with the Greater Sage-Grouse Land Use Plan amendments for the Department of the Interior Bureaus, such as the Bureau of Land Management, and the U.S. Forest Service.

  18. A Regional Approach to Wildlife Monitoring Related to Energy Exploration and Development in Colorado

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kotliar, Natasha B.; Bowen, Zachary H.; Ouren, Douglas S.; Farmer, Adrian H.

    2008-01-01

    : White River, Glenwood Springs, Kremmling, Grand Junction, and Little Snake. The overall study area was selected to encompass the primary distribution of sagebrush and greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) in Colorado and to provide a larger context for evaluating priority management issues of the White River and Glenwood Springs Field Offices. Within the study area, we selected an additional scale of analysis: the Roan Plateau, an area of increased energy development. We focused our demonstration project on the primary objectives identified by the BLM and other stakeholders: (1) How do we evaluate the cumulative effects of energy development and mitigation activities on species of management interest or concern? (2) How can cumulative effects, including direct and indirect effects, be quantified relative to natural variation? (3) How can we implement compliance and effectiveness monitoring to determine whether lease stipulations are met and restoration/mitigation goals are achieved? We targeted greater sage-grouse because this species was identified as a monitoring priority for the White River Field Office. We also evaluated landscape-level indices to address fragmentation resulting from surface disturbance. The primary purpose of this exercise was to highlight the types of analyses and approaches that could be used to evaluate energy development in an application of the three-phase framework. We provide examples of Phase I products that can be used to guide the refinement of management objectives, development of adaptive management and research frameworks, and planning activities in Phase II. Finally, we report on the BLM's National Sage-Grouse Habitat Conservation Strategy as an example of Phase III activities. The development of an effective monitoring program is a daunting task, and will be difficult to implement by the BLM independently due to the current work load of staff. However, the scientific expertise and experience for developing cr

  19. U.S. Geological Survey Science for the Wyoming Landscape Conservation Initiative - 2008 Annual Report

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bowen, Zachary H.; Aldridge, Cameron L.; Anderson, Patrick J.; Assal, Timothy J.; Baer, Lori Anne; Bristol, R. Sky; Carr, Natasha B.; Chong, Geneva W.; Diffendorfer, Jay E.; Fedy, Bradley C.; Garman, Steven L.; Germaine, Stephen S.; Grauch, Richard I.; Homer, Collin G.; Manier, Daniel J.; Kauffman, Matthew J.; Latysh, Natalie; Melcher, Cynthia P.; Miller, Kirk A.; Montag, Jessica; Nutt, Constance J.; Potter, Christopher; Sawyer, Hall; Smith, David B.; Sweat, Michael J.; Wilson, Anna B.

    2009-01-01

    for terrestrial indicators, and evaluations of alternative monitoring designs are underway. Initial models and map products have been developed for assessing vegetation, surface disturbance, oil and gas resources, mineral resources, surficial geology, invasive species, aspen treatments, ungulate migration corridors, greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus), pygmy rabbits (Brachylagus idahoensis), and songbirds, and data were collected or compiled to validate and refine the models. Coordination and collaboration among partners has led to the production of several documents addressing WLCI objectives, strategies, and guiding principles, and has facilitated implementation of on-the-ground habitat treatments.

  20. Sagebrush ecosystems: current status and trends.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beever, E.A.; Connelly, J.W.; Knick, S.T.; Schroeder, M.A.; Stiver, S. J.

    2004-01-01

    influenced the landscape and increased access into sagebrush habitats. Energy development also influenced sagebrush landscapes by construction of wells, access roads, and pipelines. Treatments to restore sagebrush are becoming a major emphasis of land management agencies. However, revegetation and rehabilitation treatments are limited by the financial, biological, and technological resources needed to restore sagebrush landscapes that function at the spatial and temporal scales used by sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus)

  1. Antelope, sage grouse, and neotropical migrants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reg. Rothwell

    1993-01-01

    The momentum this Partners in Flight initiative has developed is very impressive. I'm encouraged because, although it will have its costs, I see it as a potential aid to existing wildlife management efforts. Here, I will discuss some types of information that are routinely used by wildlife and habitat managers for other species. If this same information is made...

  2. U.S. Geological Survey Science for the Wyoming Landscape Conservation Initiative-2010 Annual Report

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bowen, Zachary H.; Aldridge, Cameron L.; Anderson, Patrick J.; Assal, Timothy J.; Biewick, Laura; Blecker, Steven W.; Boughton, Gregory K.; Bristol, R. Sky; Carr, Natasha B.; Chalfoun, Anna D.; Chong, Geneva W.; Clark, Melanie L.; Diffendorfer, Jay E.; Fedy, Bradley C.; Foster, Katharine; Garman, Steven L.; Germaine, Stephen S.; Holloway, JoAnn; Homer, Collin G.; Kauffman, Matthew J.; Keinath, Douglas; Latysh, Natalie; Manier, Daniel J.; McDougal, Robert R.; Melcher, Cynthia P.; Miller, Kirk A.; Montag, Jessica; Potter, Christopher J.; Schell, Spencer; Shafer, Sarah L.; Smith, David B.; Stillings, Lisa L.; Tuttle, Michele L.W.; Wilson, Anna B.

    2011-01-01

    This is the third report produced by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) for the Wyoming Landscape Conservation Initiative (WLCI) to detail annual work activities. The first report described activities for 2007 and 2008, and the second report covered work activities for FY09. This third report covers work activities conducted in FY2010, and it continues the 2009 approach of reporting on all the individual activities to help give WLCI partners and other readers the full scope of what has been accomplished. New in this year's report is an additional section for each work activity that outlines the work planned for the following fiscal year. In FY2010, there were 35 ongoing/expanded, completed, or new projects conducted under the five major multi-disciplinary science and technical-assistance activities: (1) Baseline Synthesis; (2) Targeted Monitoring and Research; (3) Data and Information Management; (4) Integration and Coordination; and (5) Decisionmaking and Evaluation. The three new work activities were to (1) compile existing water data for the entire WLCI region and (2) develop regional curves (statistical models) for relating bankfull-channel geometry and discharge to drainages in the WLCI region, both of which will help guide long-term monitoring of water resources; and (3) initiate a groundwater-monitoring network to evaluate potential effects of energy-development activities on groundwater quality where groundwater is an important source of public/private water supplies. Results of the FY2009 work to develop methods for assessing soil organic matter and mercury indicated that selenium and arsenic levels may be elevated in the Muddy Creek Basin; thus, the focus of that activity was shifted in FY2010 to evaluate biogeochemical cycling of elements in the basin. In FY2010, two ongoing activities were expanded with the addition of more sampling plots: (a) the study of how greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) use vegetation-treatment areas (sites added to

  3. Ecological influence and pathways of land use in sagebrush

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knick, Steven T.; Hanser, Steven E.; Miller, Richard F.; Pyke, David A.; Wisdom, Michael J.; Finn, Sean P.; Rinkes, E. Thomas; Henny, Charles J.; Knick, Steven T.; Connelly, John W.

    2011-01-01

    Land use in sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) landscapes influences all sage-grouse (Centrocer-cus spp.) populations in western North America. Croplands and the network of irrigation canals cover 230,000 km2 and indirectly influence up to 77% of the Sage-Grouse Conservation Area and 73% of sagebrush land cover by subsidizing synanthropic predators on sage-grouse. Urbanization and the demands of human population growth have created an extensive network of con-necting infrastructure that is expanding its influence on sagebrush landscapes. Over 2,500 km2 are now covered by interstate highways and paved roads; when secondary roads are included, 15% of the Sage-Grouse Conservation Area and 5% of existing sagebrush habitats are 2.5 km from roads. Density of secondary roads often exceeds 5 km/km2, resulting in widespread motorized access for recreation, creating extensive travel corridors for management actions and resource development, subsidizing predators adapted to human presence, and facilitating spread of exotic or invasive plants. Sagebrush lands also are being used for their wilderness and recreation values, including off highway vehicle use. Approximately 12,000,000 animal use months (AUM amount of forage to support one livestock unit per month) are permitted for grazing livestock on public lands in the western states. Direct effects of grazing on sage-grouse populations or sagebrush landscapes are not possible to assess from current data. However, management of lands grazed by livestock has influenced sagebrush ecosystems by vegetation treatments to increase forage and reduce sagebrush and other plant species unpalatable to livestock. Fences (2 km/km2 in some regions), roads, and water developments to manage livestock movements further modify the landscape. Oil and gas development influences 8% of the sagebrush habitats with the highest intensities occurring in the eastern range of sage-grouse; 20% of the sagebrush distribution is indirectly influenced in the Great

  4. 2012 Whitewater Baldy Post Fire, Grouse Mountain NW SW, CIR

    Data.gov (United States)

    Earth Data Analysis Center, University of New Mexico — This dataset contains imagery for the Gila National Forest, Catron and Grant County, New Mexico. The imagery was flown to provide coverage after the 2012...

  5. 2012 Whitewater Baldy Post Fire, Grouse Mountain SW NW, RGB

    Data.gov (United States)

    Earth Data Analysis Center, University of New Mexico — This dataset contains imagery for the Gila National Forest, Catron and Grant County, New Mexico. The imagery was flown to provide coverage after the 2012...

  6. 2012 Whitewater Baldy Post Fire, Grouse Mountain SE NE, RGB

    Data.gov (United States)

    Earth Data Analysis Center, University of New Mexico — This dataset contains imagery for the Gila National Forest, Catron and Grant County, New Mexico. The imagery was flown to provide coverage after the 2012...

  7. 2012 Whitewater Baldy Post Fire, Grouse Mountain SE SW, CIR

    Data.gov (United States)

    Earth Data Analysis Center, University of New Mexico — This dataset contains imagery for the Gila National Forest, Catron and Grant County, New Mexico. The imagery was flown to provide coverage after the 2012...

  8. 2012 Whitewater Baldy Post Fire, Grouse Mountain SW SE, CIR

    Data.gov (United States)

    Earth Data Analysis Center, University of New Mexico — This dataset contains imagery for the Gila National Forest, Catron and Grant County, New Mexico. The imagery was flown to provide coverage after the 2012...

  9. 2012 Whitewater Baldy Post Fire, Grouse Mountain SE NW, CIR

    Data.gov (United States)

    Earth Data Analysis Center, University of New Mexico — This dataset contains imagery for the Gila National Forest, Catron and Grant County, New Mexico. The imagery was flown to provide coverage after the 2012...

  10. 2012 Whitewater Baldy Post Fire, Grouse Mountain NW SE, CIR

    Data.gov (United States)

    Earth Data Analysis Center, University of New Mexico — This dataset contains imagery for the Gila National Forest, Catron and Grant County, New Mexico. The imagery was flown to provide coverage after the 2012...

  11. 2012 Whitewater Baldy Post Fire, Grouse Mountain NE NE, CIR

    Data.gov (United States)

    Earth Data Analysis Center, University of New Mexico — This dataset contains imagery for the Gila National Forest, Catron and Grant County, New Mexico. The imagery was flown to provide coverage after the 2012...

  12. 2012 Whitewater Baldy Post Fire, Grouse Mountain NE SW, RGB

    Data.gov (United States)

    Earth Data Analysis Center, University of New Mexico — This dataset contains imagery for the Gila National Forest, Catron and Grant County, New Mexico. The imagery was flown to provide coverage after the 2012...

  13. Wildlife mitigation and monitoring report Gunnison, Colorado, site

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1997-04-01

    The Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project is administered by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE); its purpose is to cleanup uranium mill tailings and other contaminated material at 24 UMTRA Project sites in 10 states. This report summarizes the wildlife mitigation and monitoring program under way at the Gunnison UMTRA Project, Gunnison, Colorado. Remedial action at the Gunnison site was completed in December 1995 and is described in detail in the Gunnison completion report. The impacts of this activity were analyzed in the Gunnison environmental assessment (EA). These impacts included two important game species: the pronghorn antelope (Antilocapra americans) and sage grouse (Wentrocerus urophasianus). Haul truck traffic was predicted to limit antelope access to water sources north of the Tenderfoot Mountain haul road and that truck traffic along this and other haul roads could result in antelope road kills. Clearing land at the disposal cell, haul road and borrow site activities, and the associated human activities also were predicted to negatively impact (directly and indirectly) sage grouse breeding, nesting, loafing, and wintering habitat. As a result, an extensive mitigation and monitoring plan began in 1992. Most of the monitoring studies are complete and the results of these studies, written by different authors, appear in numerous reports. This report will: (1) Analyze existing impacts and compare them to predicted impacts. (2) Summarize mitigation measures. (3) Summarize all existing monitoring data in one report. (4) Analyze the effectiveness of the mitigation measures

  14. Avoidance behavior by prairie grouse: implications for development of wind energy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pruett, Christin L; Patten, Michael A; Wolfe, Donald H

    2009-10-01

    New wind-energy facilities and their associated power transmission lines and roads are being constructed at a rapid pace in the Great Plains of North America. Nevertheless, little is known about the possible negative effects these anthropogenic features might have on prairie birds, one of the most threatened groups in North America. We examined radiotelemetry tracking locations of Lesser Prairie-Chickens (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus) and Greater Prairie-Chickens (T. cupido) in two locations in Oklahoma to determine whether these birds avoided or changed movement behavior near power lines and paved highways. We tracked 463 Lesser Prairie-Chickens (15,071 tracking locations) and 216 Greater Prairie-Chickens (5,750 locations) for 7 and 3 years, respectively. Individuals of both species avoided power lines by at least 100 m and Lesser Prairie-Chickens avoided one of the two highways by 100 m. Prairie-chickens crossed power lines less often than expected if birds moved randomly (p 0.05). In addition, home ranges of Lesser Prairie-Chickens overlapped the power line less often than would be expected by chance placement of home ranges; this result was supported by kernel-density estimation of home ranges. It is likely that new power lines (and other tall structures such as wind turbines) will lead to avoidance of previously suitable habitat and will serve as barriers to movement. These two factors will likely increase fragmentation in an already fragmented landscape if wind energy development continues in prairie habitats.

  15. 78 FR 2485 - Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Endangered Status for Gunnison Sage-Grouse

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-01-11

    ...; predation (often facilitated by human development or disturbance); genetic risks in the declining, smaller... plants, fire, and climate change, and the interaction of these three factors; fences; renewable and non-renewable energy development; pi[ntilde]on-juniper encroachment; water development; disease;, drought; and...

  16. Do artificial nests simulate nest success of greater sage-grouse?

    OpenAIRE

    Dinkins, Jonathan B.; Conover, Michael R.; Mabray, Scott T.

    2013-01-01

    Artificial nests have been used to study factors affecting nest success because researchers can manipulate them more than natural bird nests. Many researchers have questioned the validity of generalizing the results from artificial nests onto naturally occurring nests. Other studies have assessed the validity of artificial nest studies by simultaneously comparing overall depredation or daily survival rates, depredation timing, predator species, or habitat characteristics of artificial and nat...

  17. Sage-Grouse and Coal-Bed Methane: Can They Coexist within the Powder River Basin?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duncan, Michael B.

    2010-01-01

    Concerns are growing regarding the availability of sustainable energy sources due to a rapidly growing human population and a better understanding of climate change. In recent years, the United States has focused much attention on developing domestic energy sources, which include coal-bed methane (CBM). There are vast deposits of the natural gas…

  18. Two low coverage bird genomes and a comparison of reference-guided versus de novo genome assemblies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Card, Daren C; Schield, Drew R; Reyes-Velasco, Jacobo; Fujita, Matthew K; Andrew, Audra L; Oyler-McCance, Sara J; Fike, Jennifer A; Tomback, Diana F; Ruggiero, Robert P; Castoe, Todd A

    2014-01-01

    As a greater number and diversity of high-quality vertebrate reference genomes become available, it is increasingly feasible to use these references to guide new draft assemblies for related species. Reference-guided assembly approaches may substantially increase the contiguity and completeness of a new genome using only low levels of genome coverage that might otherwise be insufficient for de novo genome assembly. We used low-coverage (∼3.5-5.5x) Illumina paired-end sequencing to assemble draft genomes of two bird species (the Gunnison Sage-Grouse, Centrocercus minimus, and the Clark's Nutcracker, Nucifraga columbiana). We used these data to estimate de novo genome assemblies and reference-guided assemblies, and compared the information content and completeness of these assemblies by comparing CEGMA gene set representation, repeat element content, simple sequence repeat content, and GC isochore structure among assemblies. Our results demonstrate that even lower-coverage genome sequencing projects are capable of producing informative and useful genomic resources, particularly through the use of reference-guided assemblies.

  19. Two low coverage bird genomes and a comparison of reference-guided versus de novo genome assemblies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Card, Daren C.; Schield, Drew R.; Reyes-Velasco, Jacobo; Fujita, Matthre K.; Andrew, Audra L.; Oyler-McCance, Sara J.; Fike, Jennifer A.; Tomback, Diana F.; Ruggiero, Robert P.; Castoe, Todd A.

    2014-01-01

    As a greater number and diversity of high-quality vertebrate reference genomes become available, it is increasingly feasible to use these references to guide new draft assemblies for related species. Reference-guided assembly approaches may substantially increase the contiguity and completeness of a new genome using only low levels of genome coverage that might otherwise be insufficient for de novo genome assembly. We used low-coverage (~3.5–5.5x) Illumina paired-end sequencing to assemble draft genomes of two bird species (the Gunnison Sage-Grouse, Centrocercus minimus, and the Clark's Nutcracker, Nucifraga columbiana). We used these data to estimate de novo genome assemblies and reference-guided assemblies, and compared the information content and completeness of these assemblies by comparing CEGMA gene set representation, repeat element content, simple sequence repeat content, and GC isochore structure among assemblies. Our results demonstrate that even lower-coverage genome sequencing projects are capable of producing informative and useful genomic resources, particularly through the use of reference-guided assemblies.

  20. 78 FR 79004 - Notice of Availability of the Wyoming Greater Sage-Grouse Draft Land Use Plan Amendments and...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-12-27

    ...-rearing and winter concentration areas. General Habitat--Areas of seasonal or year-round habitat outside of priority habitat. Connectivity Habitat--Areas identified as broader regions of connectivity... habitat identified by the Wyoming Game and Fish Department: Core Habitat--Areas identified as having the...

  1. 78 FR 65701 - Notice of Availability of the Nevada and Northeastern California Greater Sage-Grouse Draft Land...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-11-01

    ... easements; minimize herbicide use; close ACECs to oil, gas and geothermal leasing; allow locatable and... within PPMA and PGMAs; close to oil, gas, geothermal leasing within PPMA and within 4 miles of active...) Ely RMP (2008) Shoshone-Eureka RMP (1986) Tonopah RMP (1997) Wells RMP (1985) Winnemucca RMP (revision...

  2. 78 FR 59713 - Notice of Availability of the North Dakota Greater Sage-Grouse Draft Resource Management Plan...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-09-27

    ...)--Areas identified as having the highest conservation value to maintaining sustainable GRSG populations... FR 77008), and ended on March 23, 2012. The BLM held one scoping open house in North Dakota in...

  3. 78 FR 67186 - Notice of Availability of the Lewistown Field Office Greater Sage-Grouse Draft Land Use Plan...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-11-08

    ... Habitat (PPH)--Areas identified as having the highest conservation value to maintaining sustainable GRSG... Federal Register to extend the scoping period until March 19, 2012. The BLM held a scoping open house on...

  4. Conservation of greater sage-grouse on public lands in the western U.S.: Implications of recovery and management policies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carl L. Wambolt; Aaron J. Harp; Bruce L. Welch; Nancy Shaw; John W. Connelly; Kerry P. Reese; Clait E. Braun; Donald A. Klebenow; E. Durant McArthur; James G. Thompson; L. Allen Torell; John A. Tanaka

    2002-01-01

    The role of the Policy Analysis Center for Western Public Lands is to provide integrated social, economic and ecological analyses of public land policies that affect communities in the West. Its mission is to help rural communities, policy makers, resource managers, resource users and others understand, analyze and engage effectively in the public-land policy process...

  5. Plant Guide: Tapertip hawksbeard (Crepis acuminata Nutt.)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Derek Tilley; Scott Jensen; Loren St. John

    2012-01-01

    Tapertip hawksbeard leaves are consumed by pre-laying sage grouse hens and make up a large portion of their diet (Barnett and Crawford, 1994). Sage grouse chicks also feed on tapertip hawksbeard leaves in addition to the insects attracted by the flowers (Drut and others, 1994; Klebenow and Gray, 1968).

  6. Threats to agriculture at the extensive and intensive margins : economic analyses of selected land-use issues in the U.S. West and British Columbia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Eagle, A.J.

    2009-01-01

    Key Words Agriculture-environment interactions, economic modelling, sage grouse, yellow starthistle, urban-rural fringe, Geographic Information Systems (GIS), farmland conservation, direct marketing Agricultural land uses are frequently challenged by competing land demands for urban uses and for

  7. UT ARMPA Map 2.2 Biologically Significant Units

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of the Interior — This data set was created to depict “biologically significant units” (BSU) from the BLM Greater Sage-Grouse Land Use Planning Strategy – Utah Sub-Region. This data...

  8. 78 FR 42798 - Notice of Public Meeting, Northwest Colorado Resource Advisory Council Meeting

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-07-17

    ... telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD) may call the Federal Information Relay Service (FIRS) at 1- 800-877-8339... Sage-Grouse Planning Strategy, working group reports, recreation, fire management, land use planning...

  9. Final Environmental Assessment: Implementation of the Natural Resources Management Program Clear Air Force Station, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    2003-06-01

    vison ), muskrat (Ondatra zibethicus), short-tail weasels ( Mustela erminea), red squirrels (Tamiasciurus hudsonicus), spruce grouse (Dendragapus...Intense or long-lasting smoke caused by large uncontrolled fire can impact air quality and seriously affect respiratory health • Destruction of valuable...canadensis), sharp-tailed grouse (Tympanuchus phasianellus), and least weasels ( Mustela nivalis). In addition to the large mammals and fur-bearers

  10. Science Framework for the Conservation and Restoration Strategy of the Department of the Interior, Secretarial Order 3336: Using resilience and resistance concepts to assess threats to sagebrush ecosystems and sage-grouse, prioritize conservation and restoration actions, and inform management strategies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jeanne C. Chambers; Jeffrey L. Beck; Steve Campbell; John Carlson; Thomas J. Christiansen; Karen J. Clause; Michele R. Crist; Jonathan B. Dinkins; Kevin E. Doherty; Shawn Espinosa; Kathleen A. Griffin; Steven E. Hanser; Douglas W. Havlina; Kenneth F. Henke; Jacob D. Hennig; Laurie L. Kurth; Jeremy D. Maestas; Mary Manning; Kenneth E. Mayer; Brian A. Mealor; Clinton McCarthy; Mike Pellant; Marco A. Perea; Karen L. Prentice; David A. Pyke; Lief A. Wiechman; Amarina Wuenschel

    2016-01-01

    The Science Framework for the Conservation and Restoration Strategy of the Department of the Interior, Secretarial Order 3336 (SO 3336), Rangeland Fire Prevention, Management and Restoration, provides a strategic, multiscale approach for prioritizing areas for management and determining effective management strategies across the sagebrush biome. The emphasis of this...

  11. Geometric subspace updates with applications to online adaptive nonlinear model reduction

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Zimmermann, Ralf; Peherstorfer, Benjamin; Willcox, Karen

    2018-01-01

    In many scientific applications, including model reduction and image processing, subspaces are used as ansatz spaces for the low-dimensional approximation and reconstruction of the state vectors of interest. We introduce a procedure for adapting an existing subspace based on information from...... Estimation (GROUSE). We establish for GROUSE a closed-form expression for the residual function along the geodesic descent direction. Specific applications of subspace adaptation are discussed in the context of image processing and model reduction of nonlinear partial differential equation systems....

  12. 76 FR 48877 - Kootenai National Wildlife Refuge, Boundary County, ID; Draft Comprehensive Conservation Plan and...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-08-09

    ..., Kootenai National Wildlife Refuge, 287 Westside Road, Bonners Ferry, ID 83805. Web site: http://www.fws.gov..., wildlife observation and photography, and environmental education and interpretation. We will review and... the auto tour route to provide for safety. Big game and upland game (grouse) hunting would be allowed...

  13. 77 FR 16556 - Kootenai National Wildlife Refuge, Boundary County, ID; Final Comprehensive Conservation Plan and...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-03-21

    ...: Dianna Ellis, Refuge Manager, Kootenai National Wildlife Refuge, 287 Westside Road, Bonners Ferry, ID..., wildlife observation and photography, and environmental education and interpretation. We will review and... safety. Allowing big game and upland game (grouse) hunting on the 295 acres of timber on the west side of...

  14. Plant guide: Douglas' dusty-maiden (Chaenactic douglasii)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Derek Tilley; Dan Ogle; Loren St. John

    2010-01-01

    Douglas' dustymaiden can be used as part of a native forb component in wildland seedings to increase biodiversity, improve wildlife habitat, and provide food for numerous birds and mammals. Douglas' dustymaiden is readily visited by pollinators and other insect species. It is considered an important species for sage grouse during brood rearing because of its...

  15. 75 FR 69701 - Notice of Public Meeting, John Day/Snake Resource Advisory Council

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-11-15

    ... alternatives, recent information on Sage-grouse and wolf management; set goals for 2011 in a strategic planning... contact the BLM Prineville District at the address below. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The JDSRAC will... Transmission Project. Public comment is scheduled from 1 p.m. to 1:15 p.m. (Pacific) November 30, 2010, during...

  16. The impact of disease on wildlife populations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herman, C.M.

    1969-01-01

    It is postulated that disease is a product of adverse habitats. Overpopulation causes overutilization of food supplies, which results in malnutrition and a decrease in resistance to diseases. Examples of such ecological relationships in populations of Canada geese, California quail, red grouse, deer, rabbits, voles, mice and lemmings are presented.

  17. Host diversity begets parasite diversity: bird final hosts and trematodes in snail intermediate hosts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hechinger, R.F.; Lafferty, K.D.

    2005-01-01

    It is postulated that disease is a product of adverse habitats. Overpopulation causes overutilization of food supplies, which results in malnutrition and a decrease in resistance to diseases. Examples of such ecological relationships in populations of Canada geese, California quail, red grouse, deer, rabbits, voles, mice and lemmings are presented.

  18. 76 FR 379 - Notice of Intent To Prepare an Environmental Impact Statement for the TransWest Express 600 kV...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-01-04

    ... Road, Cheyenne, Wyoming 82003, Attention: Sharon Knowlton. E-mail: [email protected] . Web site.... The proposal would predominantly use steel lattice towers 100 to 180 feet in height with average spans... tortoise and sage-grouse); cultural resources and historic sites; visual intrusions; lands with wilderness...

  19. Ground-based observations of exoplanet atmospheres

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mooij, Ernst Johan Walter de

    2011-01-01

    This thesis focuses on the properties of exoplanet atmospheres. The results for ground-based near-infrared secondary eclipse observations of three different exoplanets, TrES-3b, HAT-P-1b and WASP-33b, are presented which have been obtained with ground-based telescopes as part of the GROUSE project.

  20. 76 FR 20370 - Notice of Intent To Prepare an Environmental Impact Statement for the Proposed Normally Pressured...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-04-12

    ... . Documents pertinent to this proposal may be examined at the Pinedale Field Office and will be posted online... wildlife habitats and populations within the Project Area, including big game, raptors, and sage-grouse... water depletions and effects on downstream listed fish species; Impacts to lands with wilderness...

  1. 78 FR 19522 - Notice of Public Meeting, Northwest Colorado Resource Advisory Council

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-04-01

    ... White River Field Office, 220 E. Market St., Meeker, CO. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: David Boyd... the BLM National Sage Grouse Conservation Strategy, working group reports, recreation, fire management... National Conservation Area, Kremmling Resource Management Plan revision and the White River Field Office...

  2. 9 CFR 147.41 - Definitions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    ... purposes of meat or egg production and competitive showing. Game birds. Domesticated fowl, such as pheasants, partridge, quail, grouse, and guineas, but not doves and pigeons. Meat type chickens. Chickens bred for the primary purpose of producing meat. Plan Conference. A meeting convened for the purpose of...

  3. KLEURLI~GE I~ ~ILITERE VERE4~1)

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    taak wat deur die drywers uitgevoer is, kan die volgende aanhaling uit die Cape Corps. Souvenir bydra: Until you have travelled on some of these roads and have experienced the trying conditions under which these men have to work you can never appreciate what they are going through, yet you never hear a grouse -.

  4. 78 FR 23782 - Notice of Intent To Prepare an Environmental Impact Statement for the Proposed Gibellini Mine...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-04-22

    ... that could include loss of habitat for Greater sage-grouse and loss of acreage for livestock grazing...). Any information about historic and cultural resources within the area potentially affected by the... impacts on Indian trust assets and potential impacts to cultural resources, will be given due...

  5. Non-invasive genetics outperforms morphological methods in faecal dietary analysis, revealing wild boar as a considerable conservation concern for ground-nesting birds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oja, Ragne; Soe, Egle; Valdmann, Harri; Saarma, Urmas

    2017-01-01

    Capercaillie (Tetrao urogallus) and other grouse species represent conservation concerns across Europe due to their negative abundance trends. In addition to habitat deterioration, predation is considered a major factor contributing to population declines. While the role of generalist predators on grouse predation is relatively well known, the impact of the omnivorous wild boar has remained elusive. We hypothesize that wild boar is an important predator of ground-nesting birds, but has been neglected as a bird predator because traditional morphological methods underestimate the proportion of birds in wild boar diet. To distinguish between different mammalian predator species, as well as different grouse prey species, we developed a molecular method based on the analysis of mitochondrial DNA that allows accurate species identification. We collected 109 wild boar faeces at protected capercaillie leks and surrounding areas and analysed bird consumption using genetic methods and classical morphological examination. Genetic analysis revealed that the proportion of birds in wild boar faeces was significantly higher (17.3%; 4.5×) than indicated by morphological examination (3.8%). Moreover, the genetic method allowed considerably more precise taxonomic identification of consumed birds compared to morphological analysis. Our results demonstrate: (i) the value of using genetic approaches in faecal dietary analysis due to their higher sensitivity, and (ii) that wild boar is an important predator of ground-nesting birds, deserving serious consideration in conservation planning for capercaillie and other grouse.

  6. Ecosystem water availability in juniper versus sagebrush snow-dominated rangelands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Western Juniper (J. occidentalis Hook.) now dominates over 3.6 million ha of rangeland in the Intermountain Western US. Critical ecological relationships among snow distribution, water budgets, plant community transitions, and habitat requirements for wildlife, such as sage grouse, remain poorly und...

  7. Range-wide assessment of livestock grazing across the sagebrush biome

    Science.gov (United States)

    Veblen, Kari E.; Pyke, David A.; Jones, Christopher A.; Casazza, Michael L.; Assal, Timothy J.; Farinha, Melissa A.

    2011-01-01

    Domestic livestock grazing occurs in virtually all sagebrush habitats and is a prominent disturbance factor. By affecting habitat condition and trend, grazing influences the resources required by, and thus, the distribution and abundance of sagebrush-obligate wildlife species (for example, sage-grouse Centrocercus spp.). Yet, the risks that livestock grazing may pose to these species and their habitats are not always clear. Although livestock grazing intensity and associated habitat condition may be known in many places at the local level, we have not yet been able to answer questions about use, condition, and trend at the landscape scale or at the range-wide scale for wildlife species. A great deal of information about grazing use, management regimes, and ecological condition exists at the local level (for individual livestock management units) under the oversight of organizations such as the Bureau of Land Management (BLM). However, the extent, quality, and types of existing data are unknown, which hinders the compilation, mapping, or analysis of these data. Once compiled, these data may be helpful for drawing conclusions about rangeland status, and we may be able to identify relationships between those data and wildlife habitat at the landscape scale. The overall objective of our study was to perform a range-wide assessment of livestock grazing effects (and the relevant supporting data) in sagebrush ecosystems managed by the BLM. Our assessments and analyses focused primarily on local-level management and data collected at the scale of BLM grazing allotments (that is, individual livestock management units). Specific objectives included the following: 1. Identify and refine existing range-wide datasets to be used for analyses of livestock grazing effects on sagebrush ecosystems. 2. Assess the extent, quality, and types of livestock grazing-related natural resource data collected by BLM range-wide (i.e., across allotments, districts and regions). 3. Compile and

  8. Spatially explicit modeling of conflict zones between wildlife and snow sports: prioritizing areas for winter refuges.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Braunisch, Veronika; Patthey, Patrick; Arlettaz, Raphaël

    2011-04-01

    Outdoor winter recreation exerts an increasing pressure upon mountain ecosystems, with unpredictable, free-ranging activities (e.g., ski mountaineering, snowboarding, and snowshoeing) representing a major source of stress for wildlife. Mitigating anthropogenic disturbance requires the spatially explicit prediction of the interference between the activities of humans and wildlife. We applied spatial modeling to localize conflict zones between wintering Black Grouse (Tetrao tetrix), a declining species of Alpine timberline ecosystems, and two free-ranging winter sports (off-piste skiing [including snow-boarding] and snowshoeing). Track data (snow-sports and birds' traces) obtained from aerial photographs taken over a 585-km transect running along the timberline, implemented within a maximum entropy model, were used to predict the occurrence of snow sports and Black Grouse as a function of landscape characteristics. By modeling Black Grouse presence in the theoretical absence of free-ranging activities and ski infrastructure, we first estimated the amount of habitat reduction caused by these two factors. The models were then extrapolated to the altitudinal range occupied by Black Grouse, while the spatial extent and intensity of potential conflict were assessed by calculating the probability of human-wildlife co-occurrence. The two snow-sports showed different distribution patterns. Skiers' occurrence was mainly determined by ski-lift presence and a smooth terrain, while snowshoers' occurrence was linked to hiking or skiing routes and moderate slopes. Wintering Black Grouse avoided ski lifts and areas frequented by free-ranging snow sports. According to the models, Black Grouse have faced a substantial reduction of suitable wintering habitat along the timberline transect: 12% due to ski infrastructure and another 16% when adding free-ranging activities. Extrapolating the models over the whole study area results in an overall habitat loss due to ski infrastructure of

  9. Factors affecting unintentional harvesting selectivity in a monomorphic species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bunnefeld, Nils; Baines, David; Newborn, David; Milner-Gulland, E J

    2009-03-01

    1. Changes in the abundance of populations have always perplexed ecologists but long-term studies are revealing new insights into population dynamic processes. Long-term data are often derived from harvest records although many wild populations face high harvesting pressures leading to overharvesting and extinction. Additionally, harvest records used to describe population processes such as fluctuations in abundance and reproductive success often assume a random off-take. 2. Selective harvesting based on phenotypic characteristics occurs in many species (e.g. trophy hunting, fisheries) and has important implications for population dynamics, conservation and management. 3. In species with no marked morphological differences between the age and sex classes, such as the red grouse Lagopus lagopus scoticus during the shooting season, hunters cannot consciously select for a specific sex or age class during the shooting process but harvest records could still give a biased reflection of the population structure because of differences in behaviour between age and sex classes. 4. This study compared age and sex ratios in the bag with those in the population before shooting for red grouse at different points in the shooting season and different densities, which has rarely been tested before. 5. More young than old grouse were shot at large bag sizes and vice versa for small bag sizes than would be expected from the population composition before shooting. The susceptibility of old males to shooting compared to females increased with bag size and was high at the first time the area was shot but decreased with the number of times an area was harvested. 6. These findings stress that the assumption made in many studies that harvest records reflect the age and sex ratio of the population and therefore reflect productivity can be misleading. 7. In this paper, as in the literature, it is also shown that number of grouse shot reflects grouse density and therefore that hunting

  10. Geology, physical properties, and surface effects at Discus Thrower Site, Yucca Flat, Nevada Test Site

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Carr, W.J.; Miller, C.H.; Dodge, H.W. Jr.

    1975-01-01

    Geologic studies in connection with Project Discus Thrower have furnished detailed stratigraphic and structural information about northwestern Yucca Flat, Nevada Test Site. The Paleozoic rocks consist of a lower carbonate sequence, argillite of the Eleana Formation, and an upper carbonate sequence. The distribution of these rocks suggests that both top and bottom of the Eleana are structural contacts, probably thrusts or reverse faults. The overlying tuff includes several units recognized in the subsurface, such as the Fraction Tuff and tuff of Redrock Valley. Other units recognized include bedded tuff associated with the Grouse Canyon Member of Belted Range Tuff, and the Rainier Mesa and Ammonia Tanks Members of the Timber Mountain Tuff. The Timber Mountain and Grouse Canyon are extensively altered to montmorillonite (a swelling clay), possibly as a result of ponding of alkaline water. The overlying alluvium locally contains at the base a clayey, tuffaceous sandstone

  11. Birds from the Old East Slavic settlement Stadnyky 11th century

    OpenAIRE

    Gorobets, L. V.; Bondarchuk, O. A.; Zarutska, V. V.; Горобець, Л. В.; Бондарчук, О. А.; Заруцька, В. В.

    2014-01-01

    The work presents the results of the analysis of a species diversity of the Old East Slavic settlement Stadnyky. The majority of hunted birds belong to the group Anseriformes (at least 45 % of the minimum possible number of individuals). Among other groups, Black Grouse is the dominant (8,33 %). Among the remains found there one can name some rare types of the West Polessye: Gavia arctica, Aythya nyroca. We have drawn the conclusions about the significant role of autumn hunting of...

  12. Roads do not increase predation on experimental nests in a highly fragmented forest land

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Svobodová, Jana; Šálek, M.; Albrecht, Tomáš

    2007-01-01

    Roč. 56, č. 1 (2007), s. 84-89 ISSN 0139-7893 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA206/01/1203 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60930519 Keywords : artificial nest predation * black grouse * red fox Vulpes vulpes * travel line hypothesis Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 0.376, year: 2007 http://www.ivb.cz/folia/56/1/84-89_MS1260.pdf

  13. Mathematical Formulation of the Arsenal Exchange Model. Revision 7

    Science.gov (United States)

    1973-06-01

    budgec is not desirable for some reason or another. Further, suppose that the analyst is willing to spend B bidget units inefficiently but only as...his stockpile is depleted,-11 max E n \\ u .; will have been achieved. * rin the groused r ;.rget case, the incremental deployments...installation. Because of the J Look-ahead feature of the program which skips over cavities, the first potential deployment increment available to

  14. Correlations and Areal Distribution of the Table Mountain Formation, Stanislaus Group; Central Sierra Nevada, California

    Science.gov (United States)

    Torrez, G.; Carlson, C. W.; Putirka, K. D.; Pluhar, C. J.; Sharma, R. K.

    2011-12-01

    Late Cenozoic evolution of the western Cordillera is a matter of ongoing debate in geologic studies. Volcanic deposits within, and adjacent to the Sierra Nevada have played a significant role in many of these debates. With local faulting coincident with eruption of members of the Stanislaus Group at ca. 38°N, the composition and correlation of these volcanics can greatly aid our understanding of Sierra Nevada tectonics. At the crest of the central Sierra Nevada, 23 trachyandesite lava flows of the Table Mountain Formation, dated at ~10 Ma, cap Sonora Peak. These 23 flows compose the thickest and most complete known stratigraphic section of the Table Mountain Formation in the region. Located ~12 km east of Sonora Peak are 16 flows of trachyandesite at Grouse Meadow. We have collected a detailed set of geochemical and paleomagnetic data for flows of these two sections at Sonora Peak and Grouse Meadows in an attempt to correlate volcanic, paleomagnetic and structural events related to uplift and extension in the Sierra Nevada and the Walker Lane. Correlation of individual flows is possible based on: stratigraphic order, temporal gaps in deposition as determined by paleomagnetic remanence direction and nonconformities, and flow geochemistry. These correlations allow us to infer source localities, flow directions, and temporal changes in flow routes. The large number of flows present at Grouse Meadow provides an additional data set from which to correlate various localities in the region to those units not represented at Sonora Peak. Several flows which occur in the upper portions of the Sonora Peak and Grouse Meadow stratigraphic sections do not correlate between these localities. The causes of stratigraphic discontinuity potentially represent: tectonic isolation across the Sierran Crest, topographic isolation by the emplacement of younger flows, or the combination of the two. Additional to the correlation of individual flows at these localities, this study shows a

  15. Spatial mapping and attribution of Wyoming wind turbines

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Donnell, Michael S.; Fancher, Tammy S.

    2010-01-01

    This Wyoming wind-turbine data set represents locations of wind turbines found within Wyoming as of August 1, 2009. Each wind turbine is assigned to a wind farm. For each turbine, this report contains information about the following: potential megawatt output, rotor diameter, hub height, rotor height, land ownership, county, wind farm power capacity, the number of units currently associated with its wind farm, the wind turbine manufacturer and model, the wind farm developer, the owner of the wind farm, the current purchaser of power from the wind farm, the year the wind farm went online, and the status of its operation. Some attributes are estimates based on information that was obtained through the American Wind Energy Association and miscellaneous online reports. The locations are derived from August 2009 true-color aerial photographs made by the National Agriculture Imagery Program; the photographs have a positional accuracy of approximately ?5 meters. The location of wind turbines under construction during the development of this data set will likely be less accurate than the location of turbines already completed. The original purpose for developing the data presented here was to evaluate the effect of wind energy development on seasonal habitat used by greater sage-grouse. Additionally, these data will provide a planning tool for the Wyoming Landscape Conservation Initiative Science Team and for other wildlife- and habitat-related projects underway at the U.S. Geological Survey's Fort Collins Science Center. Specifically, these data will be used to quantify disturbance of the landscape related to wind energy as well as quantifying indirect disturbances to flora and fauna. This data set was developed for the 2010 project 'Seasonal predictive habitat models for greater sage-grouse in Wyoming.' This project's spatially explicit seasonal distribution models of sage-grouse in Wyoming will provide resource managers with tools for conservation planning. These

  16. Long–term variation of demographic parameters in four small game species in Europe: opportunities and limits to test for a global pattern

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gée, A.

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available For decades, decreases in several populations of some small sedentary game species have been reported in Europe. From the literature, we extracted mortality and reproductive rates that were available for European populations in four iconic species, the grey partridge (Perdix perdix, the black grouse (Tetrao tetrix, the capercaillie (T. urogallus and the brown hare (Lepus europaeus, to examine how demographic parameters vary with time. Our study revealed the need to consider many confounding factors (age, sex, origin of studied individuals, season, country and methods and the scarcity of recent demographic studies. Statistical analyses showed contrasted patterns of demographic traits with time within and between species. Our results highlighted that there may be consistency with a population decrease in grey partridge and black grouse that has been reported in the literature. However, analyses in capercaillie and brown hare showed less support for a population decrease at the European scale. The significant effects of interactions between time and age (in grey partridge, capercaillie and brown hare, method or origin of individuals on demographic traits and the emergence of contrasted patterns between short, intermediate and long monitoring periods (in grey partridge and black grouse suggested that further studies should pay particular attention to potential confounding factors. Finally, the lack of recent data and doubts about the relative importance of reported causal factors indicate the need for further studies on the links between demographic traits, densities and environmental changes in the long term, and particularly on the role of predation and habitat change.

  17. Trace metal depositional patterns from an open pit mining activity as revealed by archived avian gizzard contents

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bendell, L.I., E-mail: bendell@sfu.ca

    2011-02-15

    Archived samples of blue grouse (Dendragapus obscurus) gizzard contents, inclusive of grit, collected yearly between 1959 and 1970 were analyzed for cadmium, lead, zinc, and copper content. Approximately halfway through the 12-year sampling period, an open-pit copper mine began activities, then ceased operations 2 years later. Thus the archived samples provided a unique opportunity to determine if avian gizzard contents, inclusive of grit, could reveal patterns in the anthropogenic deposition of trace metals associated with mining activities. Gizzard concentrations of cadmium and copper strongly coincided with the onset of opening and the closing of the pit mining activity. Gizzard zinc and lead demonstrated significant among year variation; however, maximum concentrations did not correlate to mining activity. The archived gizzard contents did provide a useful tool for documenting trends in metal depositional patterns related to an anthropogenic activity. Further, blue grouse ingesting grit particles during the time of active mining activity would have been exposed to toxicologically significant levels of cadmium. Gizzard lead concentrations were also of toxicological significance but not related to mining activity. This type of 'pulse' toxic metal exposure as a consequence of open-pit mining activity would not necessarily have been revealed through a 'snap-shot' of soil, plant or avian tissue trace metal analysis post-mining activity. - Research Highlights: {yields} Archived gizzard samples reveals mining history. {yields} Grit ingestion exposes grouse to cadmium and lead. {yields} Grit selection includes particles enriched in cadmium. {yields} Cadmium enriched particles are of toxicological significance.

  18. Monitoring Forsmark - Bird monitoring in Forsmark 2012

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Green, Martin [Dept of Biology, Lund Univ., Lund (Sweden)

    2013-03-15

    This report summarizes the monitoring of selected listed (Swedish Red List and/or the EU Birds directive) breeding birds in Forsmark 2002 - 2012. Monitoring of eleven listed species was conducted in the regional model area, including the candidate area in 2012 in the same way as in earlier years. The results from 2012 generally follow patterns recorded in earlier years. 2012 was in general a better bird year compared to 2010 and 2011 and most species (82%) showed increasing or stable numbers from 2011 to 2012. Only two species (18%) decreased in numbers between the last two years. All in all, six species (55 %, black-throated diver, honey buzzard, black grouse, ural owl, wryneck and red-backed shrike) show no significant trends since the start of the bird monitoring (2002/2003/2004 depending on species). During this period three species (27 %, white-tailed eagle, osprey and lesser spotted woodpecker) have increased in numbers while just two (18 %, capercaillie and hazelhen) have decreased. A new pair of black-throated divers was discovered in 2012 and seven resident pairs were registered. Breeding success was very good, the second best during the study period. Population development follows the national pattern, but breeding success seems to be better in Forsmark than in the country as a whole. Honey buzzards and ospreys occurred in good numbers, and breeding success for ospreys was good. No signs of successful breedings of honey buzzards were recorded, but this may mean little as no detailed monitoring of breeding success is made for this species. The white-tailed eagles had their best breeding year since the start of the SKB bird monitoring, meaning that during the last two years local breeding success has been back at the level recorded before the site investigations started. The three grouse species (black grouse, capercaillie and hazelhen) again showed somewhat varying patterns between the last two years as well as in the long run. The black grouse increased

  19. Monitoring Forsmark-Bird monitoring in Forsmark 2012

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Green, Martin

    2013-03-01

    This report summarizes the monitoring of selected listed (Swedish Red List and/or the EU Birds directive) breeding birds in Forsmark 2002 - 2012. Monitoring of eleven listed species was conducted in the regional model area, including the candidate area in 2012 in the same way as in earlier years. The results from 2012 generally follow patterns recorded in earlier years. 2012 was in general a better bird year compared to 2010 and 2011 and most species (82%) showed increasing or stable numbers from 2011 to 2012. Only two species (18%) decreased in numbers between the last two years. All in all, six species (55 %, black-throated diver, honey buzzard, black grouse, ural owl, wryneck and red-backed shrike) show no significant trends since the start of the bird monitoring (2002/2003/2004 depending on species). During this period three species (27 %, white-tailed eagle, osprey and lesser spotted woodpecker) have increased in numbers while just two (18 %, capercaillie and hazelhen) have decreased. A new pair of black-throated divers was discovered in 2012 and seven resident pairs were registered. Breeding success was very good, the second best during the study period. Population development follows the national pattern, but breeding success seems to be better in Forsmark than in the country as a whole. Honey buzzards and ospreys occurred in good numbers, and breeding success for ospreys was good. No signs of successful breedings of honey buzzards were recorded, but this may mean little as no detailed monitoring of breeding success is made for this species. The white-tailed eagles had their best breeding year since the start of the SKB bird monitoring, meaning that during the last two years local breeding success has been back at the level recorded before the site investigations started. The three grouse species (black grouse, capercaillie and hazelhen) again showed somewhat varying patterns between the last two years as well as in the long run. The black grouse increased

  20. Thermal adaptiveness of plumage color in screech owls

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mosher, James A.; Henny, Charles J.

    1976-01-01

    Clinal variation in the relative proportions of red and gray plum- age phases in Screech Owls (Otus asio) was analyzed by Owen (1963) and Marshall (1967). This variation was well known prior to Owen's work, but was misinterpreted (Baird, et al. 1874, Hasbrouck 1893, Allen 1893).]Laurel VanCamp and Charles Henny (MS) have 30 years of data on a northern Ohio Screech Owl population. They observed an over- winter decline (from about 25% to 15%) in the proportion of red phase birds in the winter of 1951-52. This decline was correlated with a severe winter of above normal snowfall and below average temperatures. They examined banding and recovery data and found overwinter survival of red and gray birds to be the same except for this one severe winter when 44% more red phase birds were lost than grays (VanCamp and Henny MS). Differential mortality was reported by Gullion and Marshall (1968) for red and gray phase Ruffed Grouse (Bonasa umbellus) where snow conditions for roosting is apparently the critical factor for grouse overwinter survival and is related to predation. Snow- roosting has not, to our knowledge, been observed in Screech Owls. VanCamp and Henny (MS) discuss the observations of Ruffed Grouse and Screech Owls and suggest that possible thermoregulatory differences between red and gray phase birds could account for differential overwinter survival.Our objective was to test for differences between color phase in oxygen uptake at several ambient temperatures. We hypothesized that oxygen uptake would be greater by red phase birds, especially at lower temperatures.

  1. Caesium concentration factors in wild herbivores and the fox (Vulpes vulpes L.)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lowe, V.P.W.; Horrill, A.D.

    1991-01-01

    A selection of wild animals was sampled in the winter of 1986/87. The sites chosen for sampling were based on information obtained from surveys carried out by The Institute of Terrestrial Ecology in the spring and autumn of 1986. Animals included deer, grouse, hares and rabbits, and foxes which were collected as a top carnivore in the food chain. Variation in concentration of caesium between species from the same area was unpredictable; rabbits never exceeded 200 Bq kg -1 (fresh wt) of 137 Cs in their flesh, even when adjacent to deer forests with over 1000 Bq kg -1 in the venison. The greatest complication arose from areas of peaty uplands where the pre-Chernobyl 137 Cs from weapons-testing was much higher than expected. This pre-Chernobyl contribution amounted to 630 Bq kg -1 in a red grouse from the Pennines, and 650 Bq kg -1 in a roe deer from near the Borders, being c. 60% of the total. Significant differences in concentration factors were found depending on species, food, sex, breeding condition and age. Contrasting the decrease of the two caesium isotopes in roe deer from forestry on peat with those from woodlands on mineral soils, it appeared that after an initial fall in concentration, the only decrease thereafter occurred on the mineral soils. Nowhere were radiocaesium concentrations high enough to cause concern amongst consumers of game and other wild animals, even when levels exceed 3000 Bq kg -1 (fresh wt) as they did in red deer, red grouse and the blue hare. (author)

  2. Temporary Restoration of Bull Trout Passage at Albeni Falls Dam, 2008 Progress Report.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bellgraph, Brian J. [Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

    2009-03-31

    The goal of this project is to provide temporary upstream passage of bull trout around Albeni Falls Dam on the Pend Oreille River, Idaho. Our specific objectives are to capture fish downstream of Albeni Falls Dam, tag them with combination acoustic and radio transmitters, release them upstream of Albeni Falls Dam, and determine if genetic information on tagged fish can be used to accurately establish where fish are located during the spawning season. In 2007, radio receiving stations were installed at several locations throughout the Pend Oreille River watershed to detect movements of adult bull trout; however, no bull trout were tagged during that year. In 2008, four bull trout were captured downstream of Albeni Falls Dam, implanted with transmitters, and released upstream of the dam at Priest River, Idaho. The most-likely natal tributaries of bull trout assigned using genetic analyses were Grouse Creek (N = 2); a tributary of the Pack River, Lightning Creek (N = 1); and Rattle Creek (N = 1), a tributary of Lightning Creek. All four bull trout migrated upstream from the release site in Priest River, Idaho, were detected at monitoring stations near Dover, Idaho, and were presumed to reside in Lake Pend Oreille from spring until fall 2008. The transmitter of one bull trout with a genetic assignment to Grouse Creek was found in Grouse Creek in October 2008; however, the fish was not found. The bull trout assigned to Rattle Creek was detected in the Clark Fork River downstream from Cabinet Gorge Dam (approximately 13 km from the mouth of Lightning Creek) in September but was not detected entering Lightning Creek. The remaining two bull trout were not detected in 2008 after detection at the Dover receiving stations. This report details the progress by work element in the 2008 statement of work, including data analyses of fish movements, and expands on the information reported in the quarterly Pisces status reports.

  3. Multilocus DNA fingerprints in gallinaceous birds: general approach and problems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanotte, O; Bruford, M W; Burke, T

    1992-06-01

    Multilocus profiles were investigated in five different species of Galliformes (ring-necked pheasant Phasianus colchicus, Indian peafowl Pavo cristatus, Japanese quail Coturnix coturnix japonica, domestic chicken Gallus gallus, and red grouse Lagopus lagopus scoticus) using two human multilocus probes (33.6 and 33.15) in combination with each of four restriction enzymes (AluI, DdeI, HaeIII or HinfI). All the species show a DNA fingerprint-like pattern using at least one restriction enzyme in combination with each multilocus probe. The number of bands detected and the value of the index of similarity for each species differ significantly between the profiles obtained with each multilocus probe. Some enzyme/probe combinations reveal strong cross-hybridization of the multilocus probes with satellite or satellite-like DNA sequences in pheasant, peacock, quail and chicken, which partially or completely prevented scoring of the profile. The choice of restriction enzyme was found to influence the number of bands, the value of the index of similarity and the probability of obtaining an identical fingerprint between unrelated individuals. The Mendelian inheritance and independent segregation of the fragments detected using AluI was investigated in three species (ring-necked pheasant, Indian peafowl and red grouse). Some bands were shown to be tightly linked. An extreme case was encountered in the red grouse, where 12 of the 15 bands scored in one parent represented only two, apparently allelic, haplotypes and so derived from a single locus. However, fingerprint patterns will often be adequate for use in paternity analyses, such as in behavioural studies, despite the occurrence of haplotypic sets of bands. Identical DNA multilocus profiles were sometimes observed between captive-bred siblings in one species. These results emphasize the desirability of determining, in each new species, the optimal experimental conditions as a preliminary to any behavioural or population

  4. Where to Combat Shrub Encroachment in Alpine Timberline Ecosystems: Combining Remotely-Sensed Vegetation Information with Species Habitat Modelling.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Veronika Braunisch

    Full Text Available In many cultural landscapes, the abandonment of traditional grazing leads to encroachment of pastures by woody plants, which reduces habitat heterogeneity and impacts biodiversity typical of semi-open habitats. We developed a framework of mutually interacting spatial models to locate areas where shrub encroachment in Alpine treeline ecosystems deteriorates vulnerable species' habitat, using black grouse Tetrao tetrix (L. in the Swiss Alps as a study model. Combining field observations and remote-sensing information we 1 identified and located the six predominant treeline vegetation types; 2 modelled current black grouse breeding habitat as a function thereof so as to derive optimal habitat profiles; 3 simulated from these profiles the theoretical spatial extension of breeding habitat when assuming optimal vegetation conditions throughout; and used the discrepancy between (2 and (3 to 4 locate major aggregations of homogeneous shrub vegetation in otherwise suitable breeding habitat as priority sites for habitat restoration. All six vegetation types (alpine pasture, coniferous forest, Alnus viridis (Chaix, Rhododendron-dominated, Juniperus-dominated and mixed heathland were predicted with high accuracy (AUC >0.9. Breeding black grouse preferred a heterogeneous mosaic of vegetation types, with none exceeding 50% cover. While 15% of the timberline belt currently offered suitable breeding habitat, twice that fraction (29% would potentially be suitable when assuming optimal shrub and ground vegetation conditions throughout the study area. Yet, only 10% of this difference was attributed to habitat deterioration by shrub-encroachment of dense heathland (all types 5.2% and Alnus viridis (4.8%. The presented method provides both a general, large-scale assessment of areas covered by dense shrub vegetation as well as specific target values and priority areas for habitat restoration related to a selected target organism. This facilitates optimizing the

  5. Scenario-Led Habitat Modelling of Land Use Change Impacts on Key Species.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthew Geary

    Full Text Available Accurate predictions of the impacts of future land use change on species of conservation concern can help to inform policy-makers and improve conservation measures. If predictions are spatially explicit, predicted consequences of likely land use changes could be accessible to land managers at a scale relevant to their working landscape. We introduce a method, based on open source software, which integrates habitat suitability modelling with scenario-building, and illustrate its use by investigating the effects of alternative land use change scenarios on landscape suitability for black grouse Tetrao tetrix. Expert opinion was used to construct five near-future (twenty years scenarios for the 800 km2 study site in upland Scotland. For each scenario, the cover of different land use types was altered by 5-30% from 20 random starting locations and changes in habitat suitability assessed by projecting a MaxEnt suitability model onto each simulated landscape. A scenario converting grazed land to moorland and open forestry was the most beneficial for black grouse, and 'increased grazing' (the opposite conversion the most detrimental. Positioning of new landscape blocks was shown to be important in some situations. Increasing the area of open-canopy forestry caused a proportional decrease in suitability, but suitability gains for the 'reduced grazing' scenario were nonlinear. 'Scenario-led' landscape simulation models can be applied in assessments of the impacts of land use change both on individual species and also on diversity and community measures, or ecosystem services. A next step would be to include landscape configuration more explicitly in the simulation models, both to make them more realistic, and to examine the effects of habitat placement more thoroughly. In this example, the recommended policy would be incentives on grazing reduction to benefit black grouse.

  6. Where to Combat Shrub Encroachment in Alpine Timberline Ecosystems: Combining Remotely-Sensed Vegetation Information with Species Habitat Modelling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Braunisch, Veronika; Patthey, Patrick; Arlettaz, Raphaël

    2016-01-01

    In many cultural landscapes, the abandonment of traditional grazing leads to encroachment of pastures by woody plants, which reduces habitat heterogeneity and impacts biodiversity typical of semi-open habitats. We developed a framework of mutually interacting spatial models to locate areas where shrub encroachment in Alpine treeline ecosystems deteriorates vulnerable species' habitat, using black grouse Tetrao tetrix (L.) in the Swiss Alps as a study model. Combining field observations and remote-sensing information we 1) identified and located the six predominant treeline vegetation types; 2) modelled current black grouse breeding habitat as a function thereof so as to derive optimal habitat profiles; 3) simulated from these profiles the theoretical spatial extension of breeding habitat when assuming optimal vegetation conditions throughout; and used the discrepancy between (2) and (3) to 4) locate major aggregations of homogeneous shrub vegetation in otherwise suitable breeding habitat as priority sites for habitat restoration. All six vegetation types (alpine pasture, coniferous forest, Alnus viridis (Chaix), Rhododendron-dominated, Juniperus-dominated and mixed heathland) were predicted with high accuracy (AUC >0.9). Breeding black grouse preferred a heterogeneous mosaic of vegetation types, with none exceeding 50% cover. While 15% of the timberline belt currently offered suitable breeding habitat, twice that fraction (29%) would potentially be suitable when assuming optimal shrub and ground vegetation conditions throughout the study area. Yet, only 10% of this difference was attributed to habitat deterioration by shrub-encroachment of dense heathland (all types 5.2%) and Alnus viridis (4.8%). The presented method provides both a general, large-scale assessment of areas covered by dense shrub vegetation as well as specific target values and priority areas for habitat restoration related to a selected target organism. This facilitates optimizing the spatial

  7. Chernobyl fallout in Great Britain

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Horrill, A.D.; Lowe, V.P.W.; Howson, G.

    1988-09-01

    Chernobyl deposition in the UK was sampled in May and October 1986 and in June of 1987. The sampling concentrated on grassy vegetation but in October 1986 other vegetation, soils and wildlife were included. Deposition patterns have been established and a greater degree of retention and recycling indicated for the organic soils of upland Britain. For wild animals concentration factors varied not only between species but with sex and age. Highest tissue concentrations were recorded in species feeding on heather (Blue hares and Grouse) and the lowest in rabbits feeding on grass over mineral soils. Radiocaesium was found in a carnivore (the fox) at the top of the food chain. (author)

  8. Aldo Leopold: A Bio-Bibliography

    Science.gov (United States)

    1990-10-01

    Gullies: Why Sweat to Reclaim New Land When We Lack Sense Enough to Hold On to the Old Acres ?" "Canada, 1924"** "Grass, Brush, Timber, and Fire in Southern...Game Population Increased in Trials at Riley; Study Response of Prairie Chickens and Sharptail Grouse to Fall and Winter Feeding." Findings in Farm...Surveys Help the Sportsman and Farmer." New England Game Conference, 1933, pp. 51- 56.* "How the Country Boy or Girl Can Grow Quail." Wisconsin Arbor

  9. Effect of Arctic Amplification on Design Snow Loads in Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-09-01

    or promotional purposes. Ci- tation of trade names does not constitute an official endorsement or approval of the use of such commercial products...2015 GROUSE CREEK DIVIDE 964 60.26 −149.34 700 Kenai Peninsula 1998–1998, 2000–2015 KENAI MOOSE PENS 966 60.73 −150.48 300 Kenai Peninsula 1989–2015...PORT GRAHAM SNOTEL Kenai Pen 59.35 −151.85 100 198 59.30 −151.60 HOMER NWS Kenai Pen 59.63 −151.50 101 199 59.54 −151.92 MCNEIL CANYON SNOTEL Kenai

  10. Aquatic and Wildlife Resources of the Meramec River Basin, Missouri. A Selected Bibliography,

    Science.gov (United States)

    1978-02-01

    Indian Trail Refuge, Dent County, Missouri. J. Wildi . Manage. 15(3):332-333. (14,91) 219. Christisen, D.M. 1955. Yield of seed by oaks in the Missouri...implications. J. Wildl. Manage. 26(2):164- 172. (14,17) 297. Korschgen, L.J. 1966. Foods and nutrition of ruffed grouse in Missouri. J. Wildi . Manage...Wildlife 443. Wight, H.M., and C.H. Conaway. 1961. Weather influences on the onset of breeding in Missouri cottontails. J. Wildi . Manage. 25:87-89. (67) 444

  11. West Foster Creek 2007 Follow-up Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) Report.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ashley, Paul R.

    2008-02-01

    A follow-up habitat evaluation procedures (HEP) analysis was conducted on the West Foster Creek (Smith acquisition) wildlife mitigation site in May 2007 to determine the number of additional habitat units to credit Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) for providing funds to enhance and maintain the project site as partial mitigation for habitat losses associated with construction of Grand Coulee Dam. The West Foster Creek 2007 follow-up HEP survey generated 2,981.96 habitat units (HU) or 1.51 HUs per acre for a 34% increase (+751.34 HUs) above baseline HU credit (the 1999 baseline HEP survey generated 2,230.62 habitat units or 1.13 HUs per acre). The 2007 follow-up HEP analysis yielded 1,380.26 sharp-tailed grouse (Tympanuchus phasianellus) habitat units, 879.40 mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus) HUs, and 722.29 western meadowlark (Sturnella neglecta) habitat units. Mule deer and sharp-tailed grouse habitat units increased by 346.42 HUs and 470.62 HUs respectively over baseline (1999) survey results due largely to cessation of livestock grazing and subsequent passive restoration. In contrast, the western meadowlark generated slightly fewer habitat units in 2007 (-67.31) than in 1999, because of increased shrub cover, which lowers habitat suitability for that species.

  12. Hellsgate Winter Range Mitigation Project; Long-term Management Plan, Project Report 1993, Final Draft.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Berger, Matthew T.

    1994-01-01

    A study was conducted on the Hellsgate Winter Range Mitigation Project area, a 4,943 acre ranch purchased for mitigating some habitat losses associated with the original construction of Grand Coulee Dam and innundation of habitat by Lake Roosevelt. A Habitat Evaluation Procedure (HEP) study was used to determine habitat quality and quantity baseline data and future projections. Target species used in the study were sharp-tailed grouse (Tympanuchus phasianellus), mule deer (Odocoileus hemoinus), mink (Mustela vison), spotted sandpiper (Actiius colchicus), bobcat (Felis reufs), blue grouse (Dendragapus obscurus), and mourning dove (Zenaida macroura). From field data collected, limiting life values or HSI's (Habitat Suitability Index's) for each indicator species was determined for existing habitats on project lands. From this data a long term management plan was developed. This report is designed to provide guidance for the management of project lands in relation to the habitat cover types discussed and the indicator species used to evaluate these cover types. In addition, the plan discusses management actions, habitat enhancements, and tools that will be used to enhance, protect and restore habitats to desired conditions. Through planned management actions biodiversity and vegetative structure can be optimized over time to reduce or eliminate, limiting HSI values for selected wildlife on project lands.

  13. Harvest Regulations and Implementation Uncertainty in Small Game Harvest Management

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pål F. Moa

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available A main challenge in harvest management is to set policies that maximize the probability that management goals are met. While the management cycle includes multiple sources of uncertainty, only some of these has received considerable attention. Currently, there is a large gap in our knowledge about implemention of harvest regulations, and to which extent indirect control methods such as harvest regulations are actually able to regulate harvest in accordance with intended management objectives. In this perspective article, we first summarize and discuss hunting regulations currently used in management of grouse species (Tetraonidae in Europe and North America. Management models suggested for grouse are most often based on proportional harvest or threshold harvest principles. These models are all built on theoretical principles for sustainable harvesting, and provide in the end an estimate on a total allowable catch. However, implementation uncertainty is rarely examined in empirical or theoretical harvest studies, and few general findings have been reported. Nevertheless, circumstantial evidence suggest that many of the most popular regulations are acting depensatory so that harvest bag sizes is more limited in years (or areas where game density is high, contrary to general recommendations. A better understanding of the implementation uncertainty related to harvest regulations is crucial in order to establish sustainable management systems. We suggest that scenario tools like Management System Evaluation (MSE should be more frequently used to examine robustness of currently applied harvest regulations to such implementation uncertainty until more empirical evidence is available.

  14. Trace metal depositional patterns from an open pit mining activity as revealed by archived avian gizzard contents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bendell, L I

    2011-02-15

    Archived samples of blue grouse (Dendragapus obscurus) gizzard contents, inclusive of grit, collected yearly between 1959 and 1970 were analyzed for cadmium, lead, zinc, and copper content. Approximately halfway through the 12-year sampling period, an open-pit copper mine began activities, then ceased operations 2 years later. Thus the archived samples provided a unique opportunity to determine if avian gizzard contents, inclusive of grit, could reveal patterns in the anthropogenic deposition of trace metals associated with mining activities. Gizzard concentrations of cadmium and copper strongly coincided with the onset of opening and the closing of the pit mining activity. Gizzard zinc and lead demonstrated significant among year variation; however, maximum concentrations did not correlate to mining activity. The archived gizzard contents did provide a useful tool for documenting trends in metal depositional patterns related to an anthropogenic activity. Further, blue grouse ingesting grit particles during the time of active mining activity would have been exposed to toxicologically significant levels of cadmium. Gizzard lead concentrations were also of toxicological significance but not related to mining activity. This type of "pulse" toxic metal exposure as a consequence of open-pit mining activity would not necessarily have been revealed through a "snap-shot" of soil, plant or avian tissue trace metal analysis post-mining activity. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  15. Impact of wild herbivorous mammals and birds on the altitudinal and northern treeline ecotones

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Friedrich-Karl Holtmeier

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Wild herbivorous mammals may damage treeline vegetation an cause soil erosion at a local scale. In many high mountain areas of Europe and North America, large numbers of red deer have become a threat to the maintenance of high-elevation forests and attempts to restore the climatic treeline. In northern Fennoscandia, overgrazing by reindeer in combination with mass outbreaks of the autumnal moth are influencing treeline dynamics. Moose are also increasingly involved damaging treeline forest. In the Alps, the re-introduction of ibex is causing local damage to subalpine forests and tree establishment above the forest limit as well as aggravating soil erosion. High-elevation forests and treeline in Europe are susceptible to the deleterious impact of wild ungulate populations because of former extensive pastoral use. Rodents may damage tree seedlings and saplings by girdling, root cutting, bark stripping and burrowing. Hares damage young trees by gnawing. Large numbers of small rodents may occasionally impede tree regeneration by depleting the seed sources. Rodents do not contribute to forest expansion beyond the current treeline. Among birds, nutcrackers are highly effective in influencing tree distribution patterns and treeline dynamics. Without the nutcracker caching of stone pine seeds any upward advance of the trees in response to climatic warming would be impossible. Some bird species such as black grouse, willow grouse and ptarmigan can impair tree growth by feeding on buds, catkins and fresh terminal shoots.

  16. Columbia River wildlife mitigation habitat evaluation procedures report: Scotch Creek Wildlife Area, Berg Brothers, and Douglas County pygmy rabbit projects

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ashley, P.R.; Ratassepp, J.; Berger, M.; Judd, S.L.

    1997-01-01

    This Habitat Evaluation Procedure study was conducted to determine baseline habitat units (HUs) on the Scotch Creek, Mineral Hill, Pogue Mountain, Chesaw and Tunk Valley Habitat Areas (collectively known as the Scotch Creek Wildlife Area) in Okanogan County, Sagebrush Flat and the Dormaler property in Douglas County, and the Berg Brothers ranch located in Okanogan County within the Colville Reservation. A HEP team comprised of individuals from the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation, and the Natural Resources Conservation Service (Appendix A) conducted baseline habitat surveys using the following HEP evaluation species: mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus), sharp-tailed grouse (Tympanuchus phasianellus), pygmy rabbit (Brachylagus idahoensis), white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginiana), mink (Mustela vison), Canada goose (Branta canadensis), downy woodpecker (Picoides pubescens), Lewis woodpecker (Melanerpes lewis), and Yellow warbler (Dendroica petechia). Results of the HEP analysis are listed below. General ratings (poor, marginal, fair, etc.,) are described in Appendix B. Mule deer habitat was marginal lacking diversity and quantify of suitable browse species. Sharp-tailed grouse habitat was marginal lacking residual nesting cover and suitable winter habitat Pygmy rabbit habitat was in fair condition except for the Dormaier property which was rated marginal due to excessive shrub canopy closure at some sites. This report is an analysis of baseline habitat conditions on mitigation project lands and provides estimated habitat units for mitigation crediting purposes. In addition, information from this document could be used by wildlife habitat managers to develop management strategies for specific project sites

  17. Survey of wildlife, including aquatic mammals, associated with riparian habitat on the Syncrude Canada Ltd. Aurora Mine environmental impact assessment local study area

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Surrendi, D.C.

    1996-12-31

    A general overview of the wildlife associated with riparian habitats at Syncrude`s proposed Aurora Mine, located 70 km northeast of Fort McMurray, Alberta on the east side of the Athabasca River, was presented. The area is underlain by bitumen and is being considered for bitumen extraction and production of synthetic crude oil. Two surveys were conducted with the help of experienced trappers from the community at Fort McKay. One was an aerial survey on November 3, 1995, the other a ground survey on November 29-30, 1995. The two surveys yielded 248 observed tracks on four 500 metre transects. The study area was comprised of boreal forest with natural drainage via Stanley Creek into the Muskeg River and via Fort Creek into the Athabasca River. Beavers, fox, weasel, mink, rabbit, wolf, moose, deer, ptarmigan, sharp-tailed grouse and ruffed grouse, lynx, coyote, river otter and mice were associated with riparian habitat on the study area. There was no sign of muskrat in the study area. It was concluded that in order to develop an understanding of reclamation alternatives for mined areas in the region, future detailed examination of the site should be approached through the integration of traditional ecological knowledge and conventional scientific methodology. 26 refs., 12 tabs., 2 figs.

  18. Seasonal forcing in a host-macroparasite system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taylor, Rachel A; White, Andrew; Sherratt, Jonathan A

    2015-01-21

    Seasonal forcing represents a pervasive source of environmental variability in natural systems. Whilst it is reasonably well understood in interacting populations and host-microparasite systems, it has not been studied in detail for host-macroparasite systems. In this paper we analyse the effect of seasonal forcing in a general host-macroparasite system with explicit inclusion of the parasite larval stage and seasonal forcing applied to the birth rate of the host. We emphasise the importance of the period of the limit cycles in the unforced system on the resulting dynamics in the forced system. In particular, when subject to seasonal forcing host-macroparasite systems are capable of multi-year cycles, multiple solution behaviour, quasi-periodicity and chaos. The host-macroparasite systems show a larger potential for multiple solution behaviour and a wider range of periodic solutions compared to similar interacting population and microparasite systems. By examining the system for parameters that represent red grouse and the macroparasite nematode Trichostrongylus tenuis we highlight how seasonality could be an important factor in explaining the wide range of seemingly uncorrelated cycle periods observed in grouse abundance in England and Scotland. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. Survey of wildlife, including aquatic mammals, associated with riparian habitat on the Syncrude Canada Ltd. Aurora Mine environmental impact assessment local study area

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Surrendi, D.C.

    1996-01-01

    A general overview of the wildlife associated with riparian habitats at Syncrude's proposed Aurora Mine, located 70 km northeast of Fort McMurray, Alberta on the east side of the Athabasca River, was presented. The area is underlain by bitumen and is being considered for bitumen extraction and production of synthetic crude oil. Two surveys were conducted with the help of experienced trappers from the community at Fort McKay. One was an aerial survey on November 3, 1995, the other a ground survey on November 29-30, 1995. The two surveys yielded 248 observed tracks on four 500 metre transects. The study area was comprised of boreal forest with natural drainage via Stanley Creek into the Muskeg River and via Fort Creek into the Athabasca River. Beavers, fox, weasel, mink, rabbit, wolf, moose, deer, ptarmigan, sharp-tailed grouse and ruffed grouse, lynx, coyote, river otter and mice were associated with riparian habitat on the study area. There was no sign of muskrat in the study area. It was concluded that in order to develop an understanding of reclamation alternatives for mined areas in the region, future detailed examination of the site should be approached through the integration of traditional ecological knowledge and conventional scientific methodology. 26 refs., 12 tabs., 2 figs

  20. Libby/Hungry Horse Dams Wildlife Mitigation Habitat Protection : Interim Report.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wood, Marilyn

    1991-04-01

    The Columbia River Basin Fish and Wildlife Program identified mitigation goals for Hungry Horse and Libby dams (1987). Specific programs goals included: (1) protect and/or enhance 4565 acres of wetland habitat in the Flathead Valley; (2) protect 2462 acres of prairie habitat within the vicinity of the Tobacco Plains Columbian sharp-tailed grouse; (3) protect 8590 acres riparian habitat in northwest Montana for grizzly and black bears; and (4) protect 11,500 acres of terrestrial furbearer habitat through cooperative agreements with state and federal agencies and private landowners. The purpose of this project is to continue to develop and obtain information necessary to evaluate and implement specific wildlife habitat protection actions in northwestern Montana. This report summarizes project work completed between May 1, 1990, and December 31, 1990. There were three primary project objectives during this time: obtain specific information necessary to develop the mitigation program for Columbian sharp-tailed grouse; continue efforts necessary to develop, refine, and coordinate the mitigation programs for waterfowl/wetlands and grizzly/black bears; determine the opportunity and appropriate strategies for protecting terrestrial furbearer habitat by lease or management agreements on state, federal and private lands. 19 refs., 1 tab.

  1. Columbia River Wildlife Mitigation Habitat Evaluation Procedures Report / Scotch Creek Wildlife Area, Berg Brothers, and Douglas County Pygmy Rabbit Projects.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ashley, Paul R.

    1997-01-01

    This Habitat Evaluation Procedure study was conducted to determine baseline habitat units (HUs) on the Scotch Creek, Mineral Hill, Pogue Mountain, Chesaw and Tunk Valley Habitat Areas (collectively known as the Scotch Creek Wildlife Area) in Okanogan County, Sagebrush Flat and the Dormaler property in Douglas County, and the Berg Brothers ranch located in Okanogan County within the Colville Reservation. A HEP team comprised of individuals from the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation, and the Natural Resources Conservation Service (Appendix A) conducted baseline habitat surveys using the following HEP evaluation species: mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus), sharp-tailed grouse (Tympanuchus phasianellus), pygmy rabbit (Brachylagus idahoensis), white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginiana), mink (Mustela vison), Canada goose (Branta canadensis), downy woodpecker (Picoides pubescens), Lewis woodpecker (Melanerpes lewis), and Yellow warbler (Dendroica petechia). Results of the HEP analysis are listed below. General ratings (poor, marginal, fair, etc.,) are described in Appendix B. Mule deer habitat was marginal lacking diversity and quantify of suitable browse species. Sharp-tailed grouse habitat was marginal lacking residual nesting cover and suitable winter habitat Pygmy rabbit habitat was in fair condition except for the Dormaier property which was rated marginal due to excessive shrub canopy closure at some sites. This report is an analysis of baseline habitat conditions on mitigation project lands and provides estimated habitat units for mitigation crediting purposes. In addition, information from this document could be used by wildlife habitat managers to develop management strategies for specific project sites.

  2. Water contents of samples from the Nevada Test Site: total, free (natural state to 1050C), and more tightly bonded (105 to 7000C)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pawloski, G.A.

    1981-05-01

    To help confirm correct functioning of an epithermal neutron sonde, we measured tightly bonded water content of selected Nevada Test Site (NTS) drill holes. Tuff and alluvium samples were dried overnight at 105 0 C. The samples were then heated for 45 min in a split tube furnace at 700 0 C. The water that came off due to this heating was collected and the amount recorded. The error in this procedure is +- 0.59 wt %. Total water can be calculated for samples from analyses of free and tightly bonded water contents. The maximum error in this calculation is equivalent to the error in determining the more tightly bonded water. Average total water content values have been assigned to geologic units. These values, in weight fraction, are alluvium 0.14 +- .05 and tuff 0.19 +- .04. Further division of the tuff gives values of Rainier Mesa 0.15 +- .01, Paintbrush 0.18 +- .03, Tunnel Beds 0.20 +- .04, and Grouse Canyon 0.29 +- .02. Statistically significant differences occur between the tuff and alluvium. Within the tuffs, these differences also occur between Grouse Canyon, Rainier Mesa, and Paintbrush/Tunnel Beds. Paintbrush and Tunnel Beds cannot be distinguished by this method

  3. Mountain home known geothermal resource area: an environmental analysis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Spencer, S.G.; Russell, B.F. (eds.)

    1979-09-01

    The Mountain Home KGRA encompasses an area of 3853 hectares (ha) at the foot of the Mount Bennett Hills in Elmore County, Idaho. The site is associated with an arid climate and high winds that generate an acute dust problem. The KGRA lies adjacent to the northwest-southeast trending fault zone that reflects the northern boundary of the western Snake River Plain graben. Data indicate that a careful analysis of the subsidence potential is needed prior to extensive geothermal development. Surface water resources are confined to several small creeks. Lands are utilized for irrigated farmlands and rangeland for livestock. There are no apparent soil limitations to geothermal development. Sage grouse and mule deer are the major species of concern. The potential of locating significant heritage resources other than the Oregon Trail or the bathhouse debris appears to be relatively slight.

  4. Frictional properties of jointed welded tuff

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Teufel, L.W.

    1981-07-01

    The results of the experiments on simulated joints in welded tuff from the Grouse Canyon Member of the Belted Range Tuff warrant the following conclusions: (1) The coefficient of friction of the joints is independent of normal stress at a given sliding velocity. (2) The coefficient of friction increases with both increasing time of stationary contact and decreasing sliding velocity. (3) Time and velocity dependence of friction is due to an increase in the real area of contact on the sliding surface, caused by asperity creep. (4) Joints in water-saturated tuff show a greater time and velocity dependence of friction than those in dehydrated tuff. (5) The enhanced time and velocity dependence of friction with water saturation is a result of increased creep at asperity contacts, which is in turn due to a reduction in the surface indentation hardness by hydrolytic weakening and/or stress corrosion cracking

  5. Think Outside the Bio-Box

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wiley, H. S.

    2010-06-01

    After listening to my friends for many years (and reading numerous online comments in The Scientist), I was surprised that being a biologist was considered a low stress job with a bright future. Grousing about our jobs has always been a favorite pastime for biologists, but I suspect that in our hearts, we know how good we really have it. Even though research funding is tight and faculty positions are scarce, biologists still have one of the most interesting and exciting jobs around. I certainly don’t think that our current situation is worse than in the past. The real reason why the job outlook in biology seems dim is that research professors are training students to be university research scientists instead of preparing them for the broader job market. The result is that many new PhDs are frustrated to find that the specific positions they are trained for either don’t exist or have 300 applicants.

  6. Influence of geologic structure on alluvial sedimentation in northwestern Yucca Flat, Nye County, Nevada

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wagoner, J.L.

    1983-01-01

    Using downhole photography, alluvial sediments are described in 5 emplacement holes in northwestern Yucca Flat. The holes are located on or near the Grouse Canyon fan. The 3 most proximally located holes contain the coarsest sediments and display a general decrease in grain size in the downfan direction. The 2 most distally located holes contain fine-grained distal facies sediment in the upper parts of the holes and coarse-grained proximal facies gravels lower in the holes. The proximal gravels in the lower half of the sections were derived from the gravity high, a north-south-trending horst which was exposed early during the history of Yucca Flat basin. Alluvial sedimentation eventually exceeded uplift of the horst, which was buried by distal facies sediments, derived from the western basin margin

  7. Public access management as an adaptive wildlife management tool

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ouren, Douglas S.; Watts, Raymond D.

    2005-01-01

    Wildlife populations across the United States are benefiting from improved wildlife management techniques. However, these benefits also create new challenges including overpopulation, disease, increased winter kill, and forage degradation. These issues have become the challenges for natural resource managers and landowners. Specifically, elk (Cervus elaphus) populations in the Gunnison River Valley of Colorado are growing and causing increased resource damage on public and private lands. On public lands elk threaten sage grouse habitat and compete with domestic livestock for available forage; on private lands they diminish available livestock forage. Management of elk and elk habitat in this area is a shared responsibility of the NPS (Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park and Curecanti National Recreation Area), BLM (Uncompahgre Field Office), USFS (Gunnison National Forest), and the CDOW (Colorado Division of Wildlife). All of these agencies participate in this research and adaptive management project.

  8. Crane Creek known geothermal resource area: an environmental analysis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Spencer, S.G.; Russell, B.F. (eds.)

    1979-09-01

    The Crane Creek known geothermal resource area (KGRA) is located in Washington County, in southwestern Idaho. Estimated hydrothermal resource temperatures for the region are 166/sup 0/C (Na-K-Ca) and 176/sup 0/C (quartz). The KGRA is situated along the west side of the north-south trending western Idaho Fault Zone. Historic seismicity data for the region identify earthquake activity within 50 km. The hot springs surface along the margin of a siliceous sinter terrace or in adjacent sediments. Approximately 75% of the KGRA is underlain by shallow, stony soils on steep slopes indicating topographic and drainage limitations to geothermal development. Species of concern include sage grouse, antelope, and mule deer. There is a high probability of finding significant prehistoric cultural resources within the proposed area of development.

  9. General Reevaluation Supporting Documentation for Flood Control and Related Purposes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    1984-11-01

    12ilOR ~ 2.2 2. 0 mill’-g 1.25 I.4 1.6 M ~ N i- -ia BA U OL G-RE - IT-"w ’g H ’jUUU U.OEMERGLNCY FREEBOARD__ CONCRE TE T) 9 UARIES *H"’ PAN RO,,ND...prairie chickens , and sharp-tailed grouse. Mature stands of northern floodplain forest along the banks of the area’s rivers and streams are dominated by...82170.10 04!000r~s!o 0. 000 e d he. fri ~om then .ii cat Poo’Zioeno growthg plantil Ohe rmim .0 -11,00 oft in am �* 3001 00v. 11 0100 $5.101,00 $430,0

  10. Population cycles: generalities, exceptions and remaining mysteries

    Science.gov (United States)

    2018-01-01

    Population cycles are one of nature's great mysteries. For almost a hundred years, innumerable studies have probed the causes of cyclic dynamics in snowshoe hares, voles and lemmings, forest Lepidoptera and grouse. Even though cyclic species have very different life histories, similarities in mechanisms related to their dynamics are apparent. In addition to high reproductive rates and density-related mortality from predators, pathogens or parasitoids, other characteristics include transgenerational reduced reproduction and dispersal with increasing-peak densities, and genetic similarity among populations. Experiments to stop cyclic dynamics and comparisons of cyclic and noncyclic populations provide some understanding but both reproduction and mortality must be considered. What determines variation in amplitude and periodicity of population outbreaks remains a mystery. PMID:29563267

  11. Mercury in feathers of Swedish gyrfalcons, Falco rusticolus, in relation to diet

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lindberg, P.

    1984-01-01

    The gyrfalcon (Falco rusticolus) is mainly a resident bird breeding in mountain areas in Fennoscandia. The population (estimated to 300-500 pairs) probably fluctuates according to the presence of willow grouse (Lagopus lagopus) and ptarmigan (Lagopus mutus). Little is known about pollutant levels in Fennoscandian gyrfalcons. Previous studies found low levels of DDE, PCB and mercury in organs from six Norwegian gyrfalcons. In this paper the author has included additional information on mercury levels, based on feather analyses from a few nests in northern Sweden. The use of feathers is a simple method to monitor mercury levels without sacrificing the birds. Food habits were checked by analyzing food remains at and near the nests

  12. Site selection

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Olsen, C.W.

    1983-07-01

    The conditions and criteria for selecting a site for a nuclear weapons test at the Nevada Test Site are summarized. Factors considered are: (1) scheduling of drill rigs, (2) scheduling of site preparation (dirt work, auger hole, surface casing, cementing), (3) schedule of event (when are drill hole data needed), (4) depth range of proposed W.P., (5) geologic structure (faults, Pz contact, etc.), (6) stratigraphy (alluvium, location of Grouse Canyon Tuff, etc.), (7) material properties (particularly montmorillonite and CO 2 content), (8) water table depth, (9) potential drilling problems (caving), (10) adjacent collapse craters and chimneys, (11) adjacent expended but uncollapsed sites, (12) adjacent post-shot or other small diameter holes, (13) adjacent stockpile emplacement holes, (14) adjacent planned events (including LANL), (15) projected needs of Test Program for various DOB's and operational separations, and (16) optimal use of NTS real estate

  13. Preliminary isostatic residual gravity map of the Newfoundland Mountains 30' by 60' quadrangle and east part of the Wells 30' by 60' quadrangle, Box Elder County, Utah

    Science.gov (United States)

    Langenheim, Victoria; Athens, N.D.; Churchel, B.A.; Willis, H.; Knepprath, N.E.; Rosario, Jose J.; Roza, J.; Kraushaar, S.M.; Hardwick, C.L.

    2013-01-01

    A new isostatic residual gravity map of the Newfoundland Mountains and east of the Wells 30×60 quadrangles of Utah is based on compilation of preexisting data and new data collected by the Utah and U.S. Geological Surveys. Pronounced gravity lows occur over Grouse Creek Valley and locally beneath the Great Salt Lake Desert, indicating significant thickness of low-density Tertiary sedimentary rocks and deposits. Gravity highs coincide with exposures of dense pre-Cenozoic rocks in the Newfoundland, Silver Island, and Little Pigeon Mountains. Gravity values measured on pre-Tertiary basement to the north in the Bovine and Hogup Mountains are as much as 10mGal lower. Steep, linear gravity gradients may define basin-bounding faults concealed along the margins of the Newfoundland, Silver Island, and Little Pigeon Mountains, Lemay Island and the Pilot Range.

  14. In-situ tuff water migration/heater experiment: experimental plan

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Johnstone, J.K.

    1980-08-01

    Tuffs on the Nevada Test Site (NTS) are currently under investigation as a potential isolation medium for heat-producing nuclear wastes. The National Academy of Sciences has concurred in our identification of the potentially large water content (less than or equal to 40 vol %) of tuffs as one of the important issues affecting their suitability for a repository. This Experimental Plan describes an in-situ experiment intended as an initial assessment of water generation/migration in response to a thermal input. The experiment will be conducted in the Grouse Canyon Welded Tuff in Tunnel U12g (G-Tunnel) located in the north-central region of the NTS. While the Grouse Canyon Welded Tuff is not a potential repository medium, it has physical, thermal, and mechanical properties very similar to those tuffs currently under consideration and is accessible at depth (400 m below the surface) in an existing facility. Other goals of the experiment are to support computer-code and instrumentation development, and to measure in-situ thermal properties. The experimental array consists of a central electrical heater, 1.2 m long x 10.2 cm diameter, surrounded by three holes for measuring water-migration behavior, two holes for measuring temperature profiles, one hole for measuring thermally induced stress in the rock, and one hole perpendicular to the heater to measure displacement with a laser. This Experimental Plan describes the experimental objectives, the technical issues, the site, the experimental array, thermal and thermomechanical modeling results, the instrumentation, the data-acquisition system, posttest characterization, and the organizational details

  15. Using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles to Assess Vegetative Cover in Sagebrush Steppe Ecosytstems

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Robert P. Breckenridge

    2005-09-01

    The Idaho National Laboratory (INL), in conjunction with the University of Idaho, is evaluating novel approaches for using unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) as a quicker and safer method for monitoring biotic resources. Evaluating vegetative cover is an important factor in understanding the sustainability of many ecosystems. In assessing vegetative cover, methods that improve accuracy and cost efficiency could revolutionize how biotic resources are monitored on western federal lands. Sagebrush steppe ecosystems provide important habitat for a variety of species, some of which are important indicator species (e.g., sage grouse). Improved methods are needed to support monitoring these habitats because there are not enough resource specialists or funds available for comprehensive ground evaluation of these ecosystems. In this project, two types of UAV platforms (fixed wing and helicopter) were used to collect still-frame imagery to assess cover in sagebrush steppe ecosystems. This paper discusses the process for collecting and analyzing imagery from the UAVs to (1) estimate total percent cover, (2) estimate percent cover for six different types of vegetation, and (3) locate sage grouse based on representative decoys. The field plots were located on the INL site west of Idaho Falls, Idaho, in areas with varying amounts and types of vegetative cover. A software program called SamplePoint developed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service (USDA-ARS) was used to evaluate the imagery for percent cover for the six vegetation types (bare ground, litter, shrubs, dead shrubs, grasses, and forbs). Results were compared against standard field measurements to assess accuracy.

  16. Using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles to Assess Vegetative Cover and Identify Biotic Resources in Sagebrush Steppe Ecosystems: Preliminary Evaluation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Robert P. Breckenridge

    2006-04-01

    The Idaho National Laboratory (INL), in conjunction with the University of Idaho, is evaluating novel approaches for using unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) as a quicker and safer method for monitoring biotic resources. Evaluating vegetative cover is an important factor in understanding the sustainability of many ecosystems. In assessing vegetative cover, methods that improve accuracy and cost efficiency could revolutionize how biotic resources are monitored on western federal lands. Sagebrush steppe ecosystems provide important habitat for a variety of species, some of which are important indicator species (e.g., sage grouse). Improved methods are needed to support monitoring these habitats because there are not enough resource specialists or funds available for comprehensive ground evaluation of these ecosystems. In this project, two types of UAV platforms (fixed wing and helicopter) were used to collect still-frame imagery to assess cover in sagebrush steppe ecosystems. This paper discusses the process for collecting and analyzing imagery from the UAVs to (1) estimate total percent cover, (2) estimate percent cover for six different types of vegetation, and (3) locate sage grouse based on representative decoys. The field plots were located on the INL site west of Idaho Falls, Idaho, in areas with varying amounts and types of vegetative cover. A software program called SamplePoint developed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service was used to evaluate the imagery for percent cover for the six vegetation types (bare ground, litter, shrubs, dead shrubs, grasses, and forbs). Results were compared against standard field measurements to assess accuracy.

  17. Climate change and human disturbance can lead to local extinction of Alpine rock ptarmigan: new insight from the western Italian Alps.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simona Imperio

    Full Text Available Alpine grouses are particularly vulnerable to climate change due to their adaptation to extreme conditions and to their relict distributions in the Alps where global warming has been particularly marked in the last half century. Grouses are also currently threatened by habitat modification and human disturbance, and an assessment of the impact of multiple stressors is needed to predict the fate of Alpine populations of these birds in the next decades. We estimated the effect of climate change and human disturbance on a rock ptarmigan population living in the western Italian Alps by combining an empirical population modelling approach and stochastic simulations of the population dynamics under the a1B climate scenario and two different disturbance scenarios, represented by the development of a ski resort, through 2050.The early appearance of snow-free ground in the previous spring had a favorable effect on the rock ptarmigan population, probably through a higher reproductive success. On the contrary, delayed snowfall in autumn had a negative effect possibly due to a mismatch in time to molt to white winter plumage which increases predation risk. The regional climate model PROTHEUS does not foresee any significant change in snowmelt date in the study area, while the start date of continuous snow cover is expected to be significantly delayed. The net effect in the stochastic projections is a more or less pronounced (depending on the model used decline in the studied population. The addition of extra-mortality due to collision with ski-lift wires led the population to fatal consequences in most projections. Should these results be confirmed by larger studies the conservation of Alpine populations would deserve more attention. To counterbalance the effects of climate change, the reduction of all causes of death should be pursued, through a strict preservation of the habitats in the present area of occurrence.

  18. Wind energy's subtle effect - habitat fragmentation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pruett, Jay

    2011-07-01

    Full text: New wind energy production facilities are being built to accommodate demands for more, renewable, emission-free energy. This development is most often in windy, remote parts of the United States, so new transmission infrastructure capacity is also needed for shipment of energy from prairies, hilltops and shorelines to distant population centres. Well known environmental effects from wind energy development have included direct mortality to birds and bats. However, there is a more subtle effect also at play. 'Habitat fragmentation' is an impact caused by the siting and presence of infrastructure features on wildlife species. Instead of direct mortality, there is behavioural avoidance of such features because of activity, noise and even simply the presence of vertical structures that are different from the original nature of the habitat. This fragmentation threatens to make some of the last remaining habitat for declining species, especially grassland birds, unusable by them. Prairie grouse such as prairie chickens and sage grouse appear to be particularly susceptible to habitat fragmentation due to the presence of vertical structures. Other species such as the grasshopper sparrow have also been shown to avoid such features. It is believed that these species have evolved to avoid any vertical structure because it can serve as a perch for bird-eating raptors, including eagles, hawks, falcons and owls. Certain life cycle stages, such as nesting and chick rearing, appear to be most vulnerable to these fragmentation influences. Some of the research contributing to concern over habitat fragmentation, along with the mechanism of such fragmentation, will be presented. Solutions will also be offered for the siting of wind energy facilities and transmission lines to avoid this negative environmental impact. (Author)

  19. Fire rehabilitation effectiveness: a chronosequence approach for the Great Basin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pyke, David A.; Pilliod, David S.; Chambers, Jeanne C.; Brooks, Matthew L.; Grace, James

    2009-01-01

    Federal land management agencies have invested heavily in seeding vegetation for emergency stabilization and rehabilitation (ES&R) of non-forested lands. ES&R projects are implemented to reduce post-fire dominance of non-native annual grasses, minimize probability of recurrent fire, quickly recover lost habitat for sensitive species, and ultimately result in plant communities with desirable characteristics including resistance to invasive species and resilience or ability to recover following disturbance. Land managers lack scientific evidence to verify whether seeding non-forested lands achieves their desired long-term ES&R objectives. The overall objective of our investigation is to determine if ES&R projects increase perennial plant cover, improve community composition, decrease invasive annual plant cover and result in a more desirable fuel structure relative to no treatment following fires while potentially providing habitat for Greater Sage-Grouse, a species of management concern. In addition, we provide the locations and baseline vegetation data for further studies relating to ES&R project impacts. We examined effects of seeding treatments (drill and broadcast) vs. no seeding on biotic and abiotic (bare ground and litter) variables for the dominant climate regimes and ecological types within the Great Basin. We attempted to determine seeding effectiveness to provide desired plant species cover while restricting non-native annual grass cover relative to post-treatment precipitation, post-treatment grazing level and time-since-seeding. Seedings were randomly sampled from all known post-fire seedings that occurred in the four-state area of Idaho, Nevada, Oregon and Utah. Sampling locations were stratified by major land resource area, precipitation, and loam-dominated soils to ensure an adequate spread of locations to provide inference of our findings to similar lands throughout the Great Basin. Nearly 100 sites were located that contained an ES&R project. Of

  20. Monitoring Forsmark. Bird monitoring in Forsmark 2010

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Green, Martin (Dept. of Animal Ecology, Lund Univ. (Sweden))

    2010-12-15

    This report summarizes the monitoring of selected listed (Swedish Red List and/or the EU Birds Directive) breeding birds in Forsmark 2002-2010. Monitoring of eleven listed species was conducted in the regional model area, including the candidate area in 2010 in the same way as in earlier years. The results from the monitoring in 2010 differed somewhat from results gathered in earlier years. Most monitored species have increased in local numbers during the study years, and from most years continued increases have been reported. Between 2009 and 2010 most species (seven, 64% of the monitored ones) instead decreased in numbers. Only one species (honey buzzard) increased in numbers between the years and in this case this was probably more a result of small moves by certain pairs so that they this year had parts reaching into the regional model area, while in 2009 their territories were outside of this. No dramatic changes in bird numbers were however recorded and all the studied species show stable or increasing local populations over the study period. Number of Black-throated diver pairs was normal and breeding success was good this year. The breeding success of divers has improved considerably over the studied period and the patterns recorded in Forsmark closely follow recorded patterns at the national level. Honey buzzards and ospreys occurred in good numbers, above the average for the whole period, and breeding success was better than in 2009. Even if breeding success of honey buzzards is not monitored in any detail, there were still signs of at least a few successful breedings in the area this year. Breeding success of ospreys was below average, but still within the normal variation for most years. The local white-tailed eagles had a poor breeding season and no young at all were produced within the study area. All three grouse species (black grouse, capercaillie and hazelhen) decreased in numbers between 2009 and 2010. Note however that the large amounts of snow

  1. The challenge of water management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leopold, Luna Bergere

    1960-01-01

    In a sandy, riverside location in Wisconsin my family has a farm, once abandoned by a previous owner because it would not produce much corn. By the time we bought it for a pittance, only a few remnants of white pine remained from the magnificent stands made famous by Paul Bunyan. The variability of the glacial topography had resulted in an interesting mixture of prairie marsh, swamp woodlot, and sandhill.We did not acquire this farm because it had a great potential for growing crops. Rather we were interested in the variety of ecologic and topographic types which, even within the confines of our property, represented a condensed version of many different types of land in the Wisconsin countryside. It has also a very peculiar esthetic and historical interest. Marquette's canoes slipped quietly past our favorite fishing hole on the river. Passenger pigeons had once roosted in our great oaks. The few remaining white pines silhouetted against the sky-glow of evening made one think of the Round River and the Blue Ox.All right, we had acquired this place. What were we to do with it. Its resources were narrowly limited and peculiar. They had little economic value. All the more reason that they should be appraised in order that they be fully utilized and appreciated. So, while we were hammering and sawing the old stable into a useable homestead, we walked, sat, dug, and pruned in every coulee and covert, in every thicket and thatch. By compass and pace we mapped the boundaries, the vegetation, and sketched in the topography with notes on the distribution of soil and the occurrence of water. We counted the various kinds of birds and found there was a reasonable population of woods species, mostly transients. There were no pheasant, no quail, practically no grouse, and in spring only an occasional woodcock.In conjunction with the analysis of what we had to work with we started immediately on the task of development. The techniques were chosen with an eye to specific goals

  2. Monitoring Forsmark. Bird monitoring in Forsmark 2010

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Green, Martin

    2010-12-01

    This report summarizes the monitoring of selected listed (Swedish Red List and/or the EU Birds Directive) breeding birds in Forsmark 2002-2010. Monitoring of eleven listed species was conducted in the regional model area, including the candidate area in 2010 in the same way as in earlier years. The results from the monitoring in 2010 differed somewhat from results gathered in earlier years. Most monitored species have increased in local numbers during the study years, and from most years continued increases have been reported. Between 2009 and 2010 most species (seven, 64% of the monitored ones) instead decreased in numbers. Only one species (honey buzzard) increased in numbers between the years and in this case this was probably more a result of small moves by certain pairs so that they this year had parts reaching into the regional model area, while in 2009 their territories were outside of this. No dramatic changes in bird numbers were however recorded and all the studied species show stable or increasing local populations over the study period. Number of Black-throated diver pairs was normal and breeding success was good this year. The breeding success of divers has improved considerably over the studied period and the patterns recorded in Forsmark closely follow recorded patterns at the national level. Honey buzzards and ospreys occurred in good numbers, above the average for the whole period, and breeding success was better than in 2009. Even if breeding success of honey buzzards is not monitored in any detail, there were still signs of at least a few successful breedings in the area this year. Breeding success of ospreys was below average, but still within the normal variation for most years. The local white-tailed eagles had a poor breeding season and no young at all were produced within the study area. All three grouse species (black grouse, capercaillie and hazelhen) decreased in numbers between 2009 and 2010. Note however that the large amounts of snow

  3. Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) Report : Hellsgate Project, 1999-2000 Technical Report.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Berger, Matthew

    2000-05-01

    A Habitat Evaluation Procedure (HEP) study was conducted on lands acquired and/or managed (4,568 acres total) by the Hellsgate Big Game Winter Range Wildlife Mitigation Project (Hellsgate project) to mitigate some of the losses associated with the original construction and operation of Grand Coulee Dam and inundation of habitats behind the dams. Three separate properties, totaling 2,224 acres were purchased in 1998. One property composed of two separate parcels, mostly grassland lies southeast of the town of Nespelem in Okanogan County (770 acres) and was formerly called the Hinman property. The former Hinman property lies within an area the Tribes have set aside for the protection and preservation of the sharp-tailed grouse (Agency Butte unit). This special management area minus the Hinman acquisition contains 2,388 acres in a long-term lease with the Tribes. The second property lies just south of the Silver Creek turnoff (Ferry County) and is bisected by the Hellsgate Road (part of the Friedlander unit). This parcel contains 60 acres of riparian and conifer forest cover. The third property (now named the Sand Hills unit) acquired for mitigation (1,394 acres) lies within the Hellsgate Reserve in Ferry County. This new acquisition links two existing mitigation parcels (the old Sand Hills parcels and the Lundstrum Flat parcel, all former Kuehne purchases) together forming one large unit. HEP team members included individuals from the Colville Confederated Tribes Fish and Wildlife Department (CTCR), Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW), and Bureau of Land Management (BLM). The HEP team conducted a baseline habitat survey using the following HEP species models: mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus), mink (Mustela vison), downy woodpecker (Picoides pubescens), bobcat (Lynx rufus), yellow warbler (Dendroica petechia), and sharp-tailed grouse (Tympanuchus phasianellus columbianus). HEP analysis and results are discussed within the body of the text. The cover types

  4. Relationships between gas field development and the presence and abundance of pygmy rabbits in southwestern Wyoming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Germaine, Stephen; Carter, Sarah; Ignizio, Drew A.; Freeman, Aaron T.

    2017-01-01

    More than 5957 km2 in southwestern Wyoming is currently covered by operational gas fields, and further development is projected through 2030. Gas fields fragment landscapes through conversion of native vegetation to roads, well pads, pipeline corridors, and other infrastructure elements. The sagebrush steppe landscape where most of this development is occurring harbors 24 sagebrush-associated species of greatest conservation need, but the effects of gas energy development on most of these species are unknown. Pygmy rabbits (Brachylagus idahoensis) are one such species. In 2011, we began collecting three years of survey data to examine the relationship between gas field development density and pygmy rabbit site occupancy patterns on four major Wyoming gas fields (Continental Divide–Creston–Blue Gap, Jonah, Moxa Arch, Pinedale Anticline Project Area). We surveyed 120 plots across four gas fields, with plots distributed across the density gradient of gas well pads on each field. In a 1 km radius around the center of each plot, we measured the area covered by each of 10 gas field infrastructure elements and by shrub cover using 2012 National Agriculture Imagery Program imagery. We then modeled the relationship between gas field elements, pygmy rabbit presence, and two indices of pygmy rabbit abundance. Gas field infrastructure elements—specifically buried utility corridors and a complex of gas well pads, adjacent disturbed areas, and well pad access roads—were negatively correlated with pygmy rabbit presence and abundance indices, with sharp declines apparent after approximately 2% of the area consisted of gas field infrastructure. We conclude that pygmy rabbits in southwestern Wyoming may be sensitive to gas field development at levels similar to those observed for greater sage-grouse, and may suffer local population declines at lower levels of development than are allowed in existing plans and policies designed to conserve greater sage-grouse by limiting

  5. Seismic investigations of the Earth's lithosphere and asthenosphere in two unique convergent margin settings: The Carpathians, Romania, and U.S. Cordillera, Idaho-Oregon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stanciu, Adrian Christian

    Proposed mechanisms for the unusual seismicity ~100 km southeast of the contact between the Transylvanian Basin and the Eastern Carpathians in Romania have included tearing and rollback of a subducted slab of oceanic lithosphere and gravitational instability and delamination of continental lithosphere. We examined the upper mantle fabrics using shear wave splitting of SK(K)S phases recorded at four broadband seismic stations in the Transylvanian Basin. Our results indicate a regional NW-SE splitting trend, with measurements that reflect an abrupt change from this regional flow field in the vicinity of the Vrancea body to a NE-SW trend that is consistent with redirection of mantle flow. Crustal thickness measurements show 28-30 km in the western part of the Transylvanian Basin, 34-39 km at the contact with the Eastern Carpathians, and 40-45 km further east. These results, along with previous estimates, constrain the locus of the inferred Miocene suture between the southeastern-most portion of the Tisza-Dacia terrane and the East European Platform. The second convergent margin system represented here is in the North American Cordillera in Idaho and Oregon, where subduction and accretion of exotic terranes have modified the western margin of North America. We used teleseismic receiver functions from 85 broadband stations to analyze the geometry of the Salmon River suture zone, the western Idaho shear zone, and the Grouse Creek-Farmington zone boundary. Results show a clear break in crustal thickness from ~28 km beneath the accreted terranes to 36 km east of the surface expression of the WISZ. A strong mid-crustal converter at ~20 km depth is consistent with tectonic wedging during accretion of the Blue Mountains terranes. An eastern Moho offset of ~6 km is consistent with the Archean Grouse Creek-Farmington zone boundary. We used deep converted phases generated beneath the study area to image the mantle transition zone. We observe a continuous high amplitude P410s

  6. Aeromagnetic map of northwest Utah and adjacent parts of Nevada and Idaho

    Science.gov (United States)

    Langenheim, Victoria

    2016-01-01

    Two aeromagnetic surveys were flown to promote further understanding of the geology and structure in northwest Utah and adjacent parts of Nevada and Idaho by serving as a basis for geophysical interpretations and by supporting geological mapping, water and mineral resource investigations, and other topical studies. Although this area is in general sparsely populated, (except for cities and towns along the Wasatch Front such as Ogden and Brigham City), it encompasses metamorphic core complexes in the Grouse Creek and Raft River Mountains (figure 1) of interest to earth scientists studying Cenozoic extension. The region was shaken in 1909 and 1934 by M6+ earthquakes east of the Hansel Mountains (Doser, 1989; Arabasz and others, 1994); damage from the 1934 earthquake occurred as far east as Logan, Utah (http:// www.seis.utah.edu/lqthreat/nehrp_htm/1934hans/n1934ha1. shtml#urbse). The presence of Quaternary shield volcanoes and bimodal Pleistocene volcanism in Curlew Valley (Miller and others, 1995; Felger and others, 2016) as well as relatively high temperature gradients encountered in the Indian Cove drillhole in the north arm of Great Salt Lake (Blackett and others, 2014) may indicate some potential for geothermal energy development in the area (Miller and others, 1995). The area also hosts four significant mining districts, in the northern Pilot Range, the Goose Creek Mountains in the northwest corner of the map, the southern end of the Promontory Mountains, and the southwest part of the Raft River Mountains, although production notably waned after World War II (Doelling, 1980). Other prospects of interest include those in the southern Grouse Creek Mountains, Silver Island, and the northern Newfoundland Mountains.Large areas of northwest Utah are covered by young, surficial deposits or by Great Salt Lake or are down-dropped into deep Cenozoic basins, making extrapolation of bedrock geology from widely spaced exposures difficult or tenuous (figure 1). Local spatial

  7. Variation in the diet composition of a generalist predator, the red fox, in relation to season and density of main prey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dell'Arte, Graziella Lucia; Laaksonen, Toni; Norrdahl, Kai; Korpimäki, Erkki

    2007-05-01

    Diet composition of a generalist predator, the red fox ( Vulpes vulpes) in relation to season (winter or summer) and abundance of multi-annually cyclic voles was studied in western Finland from 1983 to 1995. The proportion of scats (PS; a total of 58 scats) including each food category was calculated for each prey group. Microtus voles (the field vole M. agrestis and the sibling vole M. rossiaemeridionalis) were the main prey group of foxes (PS = 0.55) and they frequently occurred in the scats both in the winter and summer (PSs 0.50 and 0.62, respectively). There was a positive correlation between the PSs of Microtus voles in the winter diet of foxes and the density indices of these voles in the previous autumn. Other microtine rodents (the bank vole Clethrionomys glareolus, the water vole Arvicola terrestris and the muskrat Ondatra zibethicus) were consumed more in winter than in summer. The unusually high small mustelid predation by red foxes (PS = approx. 0.10) in our study area gives qualitative support for the hypothesis on the limiting impact of mammalian predators on least weasel and stoat populations. None of the important prey groups was preyed upon more at low than at high densities of main prey ( Microtus voles). This is consistent with the notion that red foxes are generalist predators that tend to opportunistically subsist on many prey groups. Among these prey groups, particularly hares and birds (including grouse), were frequently used as food by foxes.

  8. Comparative Examination of Capercaillie (Tetrao urogallus L. Behaviour Responses and Semen Quality to Two Methods of Semen Collection.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ewa Teresa Łukaszewicz

    Full Text Available Artificial insemination (AI is very helpful in solving the reproductive and biodiversity problems observed in small, closed avian populations. The successful production of fertilized eggs using AI is dependent on the collection of good quality semen. Two methods of male sexual stimulation and semen collection from captive kept capercaillie (Tetrao urogallus L., one of the most seriously endangered grouse species in Europe, are compared in this study. Ejaculates were obtained either with the use of a dummy female or by the dorso-abdominal massage method. Differences in the individual responses of the males to the two methods of semen collection as well as in their semen quality were noted. Only sperm concentration (432.4 x 10(6 mL(-1 with dummy female and 614.5 x 10(6 mL(-1 for massage method was significantly affected by capercaillie stimulation method. Sperm motility and morphology were not affected (P ≥ 0.05. Thus, for semen collection from captive kept capercaillie both methods can be used successfully. The dummy female can be an alternative to dorso-abdominal massage method, commonly used for semen collection from domesticated bird species.

  9. Analyzing stakeholders' workshop dialogue for evidence of social learning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amanda L. Bentley Brymer

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available After much debate and synthesis, social learning scholarship is entering an era of empirical research. Given the range across individual-, network-, and systems-level perspectives and scales, clear documentation of social learning processes is critical for making claims about social learning outcomes and their impacts. Past studies have relied on participant recall and concept maps to document perceptions of social learning process and outcome. Using an individual-centric perspective and importing ideas from communication and psychology on question-answer learning through conversational agents, we contribute an expanded conceptual framework and qualitative analytical strategy for assessing stakeholder dialogue for evidence of social learning. We observed stakeholder dialogue across five workshops coordinated for the Bruneau-Owyhee Sage-Grouse Habitat Project (BOSH in Owyhee County, Idaho, USA. Participants' dialogue was audio recorded, transcribed, and analyzed for cross-case patterns. Deductive and inductive coding techniques were applied to illuminate cognitive, relational, and epistemic dimensions of learning and topics of learning. A key finding supports our inclusion of the epistemic dimension and highlights a need for future research: although some participants articulated epistemic positions, they did not challenge each other to share sources or justify factual claims. These findings align with previous research suggesting that, in addition to considering diversity and representation (who is at the table, we should pay more attention to how participants talk, perhaps prompting specific patterns of speech as we endeavor to draw causal connections between social learning processes and outcomes.

  10. Effects of wind energy development on nesting ecology of greater prairie-chickens in fragmented grasslands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McNew, Lance B; Hunt, Lyla M; Gregory, Andrew J; Wisely, Samantha M; Sandercock, Brett K

    2014-08-01

    Wind energy is targeted to meet 20% of U.S. energy needs by 2030, but new sites for development of renewable energy may overlap with important habitats of declining populations of grassland birds. Greater Prairie-Chickens (Tympanuchus cupido) are an obligate grassland bird species predicted to respond negatively to energy development. We used a modified before-after control-impact design to test for impacts of a wind energy development on the reproductive ecology of prairie-chickens in a 5-year study. We located 59 and 185 nests before and after development, respectively, of a 201 MW wind energy facility in Greater Prairie-Chicken nesting habitat and assessed nest site selection and nest survival relative to proximity to wind energy infrastructure and habitat conditions. Proximity to turbines did not negatively affect nest site selection (β = 0.03, 95% CI = -1.2-1.3) or nest survival (β = -0.3, 95% CI = -0.6-0.1). Instead, nest site selection and survival were strongly related to vegetative cover and other local conditions determined by management for cattle production. Integration of our project results with previous reports of behavioral avoidance of oil and gas facilities by other species of prairie grouse suggests new avenues for research to mitigate impacts of energy development. © 2014 The Authors. Conservation Biology published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. on behalf of Society for Conservation Biology.

  11. Effects of sexual dimorphism and landscape composition on the trophic behavior of Greater Prairie-Chicken.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Beatriz Blanco-Fontao

    Full Text Available Partitioning of ecological niche is expected in lekking species that show marked sexual size dimorphism as a consequence of sex-specific ecological constraints. However, niche partitioning is uncertain in species with moderate sexual dimorphism. In addition, the ecological niche of a species may also be affected by landscape composition; particularly, agricultural fragmentation may greatly influence the trophic behavior of herbivores. We studied trophic niche variation in Greater Prairie-Chickens (Tympanuchus cupido, a grouse species that shows moderate sex-dimorphism. Greater Prairie-Chickens are native to tallgrass prairies of North America, although populations persist in less natural mosaics of cropland and native habitats. We used stable isotope analysis of carbon and nitrogen in blood, claws and feathers to assess seasonal differences in trophic niche breadth and individual specialization between male and female Greater Prairie-Chickens, and between birds living in continuous and fragmented landscapes. We found that females showed broader niches and higher individual specialization than males, especially in winter and autumn. However, differences between females and males were smaller in spring when birds converge at leks, suggesting that females and males may exhibit similar feeding behaviors during the lekking period. In addition, we found that birds living in native prairies showed greater annual trophic variability than conspecifics in agricultural mosaic landscapes. Native habitats may provide greater dietary diversity, resulting in greater diversity of feeding strategies.

  12. Honest sexual signalling mediated by parasite and testosterone effects on oxidative balance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mougeot, Francois; Martínez-Padilla, Jesús; Webster, Lucy M I; Blount, Jonathan D; Pérez-Rodríguez, Lorenzo; Piertney, Stuart B

    2009-03-22

    Extravagant ornaments evolved to advertise their bearers' quality, the honesty of the signal being ensured by the cost paid to produce or maintain it. The oxidation handicap hypothesis (OHH) proposes that a main cost of testosterone-dependent ornamentation is oxidative stress, a condition whereby the production of reactive oxygen and nitrogen species (ROS/RNS) overwhelms the capacity of antioxidant defences. ROS/RNS are unstable, very reactive by-products of normal metabolic processes that can cause extensive damage to key biomolecules (cellular proteins, lipids and DNA). Oxidative stress has been implicated in the aetiology of many diseases and could link ornamentation and genetic variation in fitness-related traits. We tested the OHH in a free-living bird, the red grouse. We show that elevated testosterone enhanced ornamentation and increased circulating antioxidant levels, but caused oxidative damage. Males with smaller ornaments suffered more oxidative damage than those with larger ornaments when forced to increase testosterone levels, consistent with a handicap mechanism. Parasites depleted antioxidant defences, caused oxidative damage and reduced ornament expression. Oxidative damage extent and the ability of males to increase antioxidant defences also explained the impacts of testosterone and parasites on ornamentation within treatment groups. Because oxidative stress is intimately linked to immune function, parasite resistance and fitness, it provides a reliable currency in the trade-off between individual health and ornamentation. The costs induced by oxidative stress can apply to a wide range of signals, which are testosterone-dependent or coloured by pigments with antioxidant properties.

  13. Impact of Management on Avian Communities in the Scottish Highlands.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Scott Newey

    Full Text Available The protection of biodiversity is a key national and international policy objective. While protected areas provide one approach, a major challenge lies in understanding how the conservation of biodiversity can be achieved in the context of multiple land management objectives in the wider countryside. Here we analyse metrics of bird diversity in the Scottish uplands in relation to land management types and explore how bird species composition varies in relation to land managed for grazing, hunting and conservation. Birds were surveyed on the heather moorland areas of 26 different landholdings in Scotland. The results indicate that, in relation to dominant management type, the composition of bird species varies but measures of diversity and species richness do not. Intensive management for grouse shooting affects the occurrence, absolute and relative abundance of bird species. While less intensive forms of land management appear to only affect the relative abundance of species, though extensive sheep grazing appears to have little effect on avian community composition. Therefore enhanced biodiversity at the landscape level is likely to be achieved by maintaining heterogeneity in land management among land management units. This result should be taken into account when developing policies that consider how to achieve enhanced biodiversity outside protected areas, in the context of other legitimate land-uses.

  14. Geology of the UE12t No. 3 vertical drill hole, area 12, Nevada Test Site

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Terry, S.S.

    1975-11-01

    The UE12t No. 3 vertical drill hole, located near the north end of Rainier Mesa, was drilled to a total depth of 663 m (2,176 ft). The UE12t No. 3 vertical hole was drilled to further evaluate the subsurface stratigraphy northwest of the t-tunnel complex area in preparation for mining of the U12t.03 (Husky Pup) drift. The drill hole is collared in the Rainier Mesa Member of the Timber Mountain Tuff and penetrates down the stratigraphic section through the Paintbrush Tuff, the welded Grouse Canyon Member of the Belted Range Tuff, tunnel beds 5-3, the Tub Spring Member of the Belted Range Tuff, tunnel bed 2, Crater Flat Tuff, tunnel bed 1, Redrock Valley Tuff, and bottoms in older Tertiary tuffaceous and Paleozoic quartzite rubble having a partially argillized, tuffaceous, soillike matrix. The tuff of Dead Horse Flat and the bedded and ash-flow tuffs of Area 20 were not differentiated in the logging of this drill hole. Stratigraphy, structure, engineering geology, and physical properties and their relation to tunneling are discussed

  15. Optimal design and routing of power lines; ecological, technical and economic perspectives (OPTIPOL). Progress report 2009

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bevanger, K.; Bartzke, G.; Broeseth, H.; Gjershaug, J.O.; Hanssen, F.; Jacobsen, K.-O.; Kvaloey, P.; May, R.; Nygaard, T.; Pedersen, H.C.; Reitan, O.; Refsnaes, S.; Stokke, S.; Vang, R.

    2009-12-15

    From 2009 inclusive, NINA has received economic support for research on power lines and wildlife from the Norwegian Research Council (NFR) through the RENERGI Programme. The project is named 'Optimal design and routing of power lines; ecological, technical and economic perspectives' (OPTIPOL). It is scheduled for 5 years (2009-1013) and is part of the activities within CEDREN, i.e. the Centre for environmental design of renewable energy (cf. http://www.cedren.no). With a grid close to 200 000 km overhead power-lines, the associated rights-of-way (ROW) affect huge land areas in Norway. The overall goal is to develop predict-ing tools for optimal routing of power lines from an environmental perspective and assess technical and economic solutions to minimize conflicts with wildlife and habitat conservation. Thus, the OPTIPOL rationale is based on the belief that the negative effects of electricity transmission and distribution can be reduced with respect to birds and mammals. OPTIPOL has several ambitious objectives, and is divided into sub-projects and specific tasks. From the first of November a PhD-student became part of the project, a position that will be held for 4 years. The main objective of the PhD-activities will be to assess how and why different wildlife species use deforested areas below power lines, evaluate possible positive and negative effects of power-line ROWs, and assess the possibilities for quality improvement. Another part of the project is dedicated the effects of linear structures on movement patterns and distribution in the landscape in native deer species. Here we will examine how different spatial scales influence the processes that guide movement patterns, and responses to linear structures. Another focus will be small game species, with mountain hare, capercaillie, black grouse and hazel grouse as model species. The main objective will be to assess the impact of transforming ROW habitats into attractive small-game foraging

  16. West Foster Creek Expansion Project 2007 HEP Report.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ashley, Paul R.

    2008-02-01

    During April and May 2007, the Columbia Basin Fish and Wildlife Authority's (CBFWA) Regional HEP Team (RHT) conducted baseline Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) (USFWS 1980, 1980a) analyses on five parcels collectively designated the West Foster Creek Expansion Project (3,756.48 acres). The purpose of the HEP analyses was to document extant habitat conditions and to determine how many baseline/protection habitat units (HUs) to credit Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) for funding maintenance and enhancement activities on project lands as partial mitigation for habitat losses associated with construction of Grand Coulee and Chief Joseph Dams. HEP evaluation models included mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus), western meadowlark (Sturnella neglecta), sharp-tailed grouse, (Tympanuchus phasianellus), Bobcat (Lynx rufus), mink (Neovison vison), mallard (Anas platyrhynchos), and black-capped chickadee (Parus atricapillus). Combined 2007 baseline HEP results show that 4,946.44 habitat units were generated on 3,756.48 acres (1.32 HUs per acre). HEP results/habitat conditions were generally similar for like cover types at all sites. Unlike crediting of habitat units (HUs) on other WDFW owned lands, Bonneville Power Administration received full credit for HUs generated on these sites.

  17. Bird mortality related to collisions with ski–lift cables: do we estimate just the tip of the iceberg?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bech, N.

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Collisions with ski–lift cables are an important cause of death for grouse species living close to alpine ski resorts. As several biases may reduce the detection probability of bird carcasses, the mortality rates related to these collisions are generally underestimated. The possibility that injured birds may continue flying for some distance after striking cables represents a major source of error, known as crippling bias. Estimating the crippling losses resulting from birds dying far from the ski–lift corridors is difficult and it is usually assessed by systematic searches of carcasses on both sides of the ski–lifts. Using molecular tracking, we were able to demonstrate that a rock ptarmigan hen flew up to 600 m after striking a ski–lift cable, a distance preventing its detection by traditional carcasses surveys. Given the difficulty in conducting systematic searches over large areas surrounding the ski–lifts, only an experiment using radio–tagged birds would allow us to estimate the real mortality rate associated with cable collision.

  18. A framework for quantitative assessment of impacts related to energy and mineral resource development

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haines, Seth S.; Diffendorfer, James; Balistrieri, Laurie S.; Berger, Byron R.; Cook, Troy A.; Gautier, Donald L.; Gallegos, Tanya J.; Gerritsen, Margot; Graffy, Elisabeth; Hawkins, Sarah; Johnson, Kathleen; Macknick, Jordan; McMahon, Peter; Modde, Tim; Pierce, Brenda; Schuenemeyer, John H.; Semmens, Darius; Simon, Benjamin; Taylor, Jason; Walton-Day, Katherine

    2013-01-01

    Natural resource planning at all scales demands methods for assessing the impacts of resource development and use, and in particular it requires standardized methods that yield robust and unbiased results. Building from existing probabilistic methods for assessing the volumes of energy and mineral resources, we provide an algorithm for consistent, reproducible, quantitative assessment of resource development impacts. The approach combines probabilistic input data with Monte Carlo statistical methods to determine probabilistic outputs that convey the uncertainties inherent in the data. For example, one can utilize our algorithm to combine data from a natural gas resource assessment with maps of sage grouse leks and piñon-juniper woodlands in the same area to estimate possible future habitat impacts due to possible future gas development. As another example: one could combine geochemical data and maps of lynx habitat with data from a mineral deposit assessment in the same area to determine possible future mining impacts on water resources and lynx habitat. The approach can be applied to a broad range of positive and negative resource development impacts, such as water quantity or quality, economic benefits, or air quality, limited only by the availability of necessary input data and quantified relationships among geologic resources, development alternatives, and impacts. The framework enables quantitative evaluation of the trade-offs inherent in resource management decision-making, including cumulative impacts, to address societal concerns and policy aspects of resource development.

  19. Optimal design and routing of power lines; ecological, technical and economic perspectives (OPTIPOL). Progress report 2012

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bevanger, Kjetil; Bartzke, Gundula; Broeseth, Henrik; Dahl, Espen Lie; Gjershaug, Jan Ove; Hanssen, Frank; Jacobsen, Karl-Otto; Kleven, Oddmund; Kvaloey, Paal; May, Roel; Meaas, Roger; Nygaaard, Torgeir; Resnaes, Steinar; Stokke, Sigbjoern; Thomassen, Joern

    2012-07-01

    WP1 'Power line ROW as habitat resources for moose (Alces alces) and other wildlife', has focused on moose browsing in power-line corridors in relation to adjacent areas in Bangdalen. Browsing surveys and pellets-group counts were also carried out in 2012 for this purpose and close to 200 plots were surveyed. A preliminary analysis of these data has been finalized. The paper: 'Comparative effects of power lines and roads and moose (Alces alces) habitat selection', was presented and submitted as contributions to the conference report at 'The 10th ROW Conference' in Arizona. WP2 'Capercaillie and black grouse population responses to power-line induced mortality', has continued the data collection in Ogndalen also in 2012. As by January 2013 a total a total of 29 search patrols have been conducted and 50 locations with birds or bird remains from collision victims in the study period were recorded. The DNA analysis has identified 7 capercaillie and 5 black grouse among these birds and birds remains. Collision mortality rate varies between years and species, where capercaillie seems more exposed than black grouse. An oral presentation, 'Black grouse and Capercaillie mortality and population Estimates by DNA identification' - was presented and consequently submitted as proceedings paper at the 10th ROW in Arizona. In WP3 'Bird collision hot spots' available data from earlier projects has been digitized and stored in a database. Some power line sections from previous projects has proven to be digitized and it is used resources to collect missing data. Database, ie GPS positions of all dead birds recorded as collision victims in relation to earlier projects, and they patrolled the power line sections, is now ready for analysis. WP4 - 'National Database for reporting dead birds, is operational and is included as part of the Biodiversity Information collection system. All data is publicly available. At the beginning of the november 2012 was added to 379 observations of dead

  20. Estimates of the width of the wetting zone along a fracture subjected to an episodic infiltration event in variably saturated, densely welded tuff

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Buscheck, T.A.; Nitao, J.J.

    1988-01-01

    A central issue to be addressed within the Nevada Nuclear Waste Storage Investigations (NNWSI) is the role which fractures will play as the variably saturated, fractured rock mass surrounding the waste package responds to heating, cooling, and episodic infiltration events. Understanding the role of fractures during such events will, in part, depend on our ability to make geophysical measurements of perturbations in the moisture distribution in the vicinity of fractures. In this study we first examine the details of the perturbation in the moisture distribution in and around a fracture subjected to an episodic infiltration event, and then integrate that behavior over the scale at which moisture measurements are likely to be made during the Engineered Barrier Design Test of the NNWSI project. To model this system we use the TOUGH hydrothermal code and fracture and matrix properties considered relevant to the welded ash flow tuff found in the Topopah Spring member at Yucca Mountain as well as in the Grouse Canyon member within G-Tunnel at the Nevada Test Site. Our calculations provide insight into the anticipated spatial and temporal resolution obtainable through the use of the geophysical techniques being considered. These calculations should prove useful both in planning the implementation of these methods as well as in the interpretation of their results. 41 refs., 28 figs

  1. Vegetation management with fire modifies peatland soil thermal regime.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, Lee E; Palmer, Sheila M; Johnston, Kerrylyn; Holden, Joseph

    2015-05-01

    Vegetation removal with fire can alter the thermal regime of the land surface, leading to significant changes in biogeochemistry (e.g. carbon cycling) and soil hydrology. In the UK, large expanses of carbon-rich upland environments are managed to encourage increased abundance of red grouse (Lagopus lagopus scotica) by rotational burning of shrub vegetation. To date, though, there has not been any consideration of whether prescribed vegetation burning on peatlands modifies the thermal regime of the soil mass in the years after fire. In this study thermal regime was monitored across 12 burned peatland soil plots over an 18-month period, with the aim of (i) quantifying thermal dynamics between burned plots of different ages (from post burning), and (ii) developing statistical models to determine the magnitude of thermal change caused by vegetation management. Compared to plots burned 15 + years previously, plots recently burned (management effects. Temperatures measured in soil plots burned vegetation regrows. Our findings that prescribed peatland vegetation burning alters soil thermal regime should provide an impetus for further research to understand the consequences of thermal regime change for carbon processing and release, and hydrological processes, in these peatlands. Copyright © 2015 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  2. over time

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sara K. Hanna

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Sagebrush steppe ecosystems of the Intermountain West have experienced a decline over the past 150 years due to changing fire regimes, invasive species and conifer encroachment. Prescribed fire is a common and cost-effective tool used in sagebrush restoration and fuels management. We examined the post-fire succession of a sagebrush steppe community over a nearly 30-year period at two study sites in northeastern California. The long-term nature of this study was particularly significant, as invasive annual grasses dominated the plant community in the years immediately following fire, but native perennial grasses and shrubs successfully out-competed them in the long term. Shrubs were slow to recover but had returned to pre-fire levels by the end of the study period. There was also notable increase in western juniper throughout the study sites, particularly in areas that had not been burned. Our results indicate that mean fire return intervals of 50 years or less would help reduce western juniper encroachment and preserve sagebrush habitat, especially for potentially threatened species such as the sage grouse.

  3. Recreation, consumption of wild game, risk, and the Department of Energy sites: Perceptions of people attending the Lewiston, ID, Roundup

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Burger, J.

    1999-01-01

    In this article, recreational rates of people attending the Lewiston Roundup rodeo in northwestern Idaho were examined, as well as their perceptions of the safety of consuming fish and game form two Department of Energy (DOE) facilities: the Hanford Site and the Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory (INEEL). These are two of DOE's largest sites. Lewiston is closer to Hanford, but is in the same state as INEEL. Men engaged in significantly higher hunting and fishing rates than women, but there were no gender differences in camping and hiking rates. Rates of hunting and camping decreased significantly with age, while rates of hiking were lowest for 31- to 45-yr-olds. Level of education generally was not related to rates of recreation. Over 70% of the subjects ate deer, elk, and self-caught fish; 30--50% ate grouse, moose, and waterfowl; and fewer people ate other game species. Overall, subjects were less concerned about eating the fish and game from INEEL than from Hanford, and more people thought Hanford should be cleaned up completely compared to INEEL. Mean rates of fishing, hiking, and camping all exceeded the DOE's maximum recreational exposure assumption of 14 d/yr used in their future use documents

  4. Ecological baseline study of the Yakima Firing Center proposed land acquisition: A status report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rogers, L.E.; Beedlow, P.A.; Eberhardt, L.E.; Dauble, D.D.; Fitzner, R.E.

    1989-01-01

    This report provides baseline environmental information for the property identified for possible expansion of the Yakima Firing Center. Results from this work provide general descriptions of the animals and major plant communities present. A vegetation map derived from a combination of on-site surveillance and remotely sensed imagery is provided as part of this report. Twenty-seven wildlife species of special interest (protected, sensitive, furbearer, game animal, etc.), and waterfowl, were observed on the proposed expansion area. Bird censuses revealed 13 raptorial species (including four of special interest: bald eagle, golden eagle, osprey, and prairie falcon); five upland game bird species (sage grouse, California quail, chukar, gray partridge, and ring-necked pheasant); common loons (a species proposed for state listing as threatened); and five other species of special interest (sage thrasher, loggerhead shrike, mourning dove, sage sparrow, and long-billed curlew). Estimates of waterfowl abundance are included for the Priest Rapids Pool of the Columbia River. Six small mammal species were captured during this study; one, the sagebrush vole, is a species of special interest. Two large animal species, mule deer and elk, were noted on the site. Five species of furbearing animals were observed (coyote, beaver, raccoon, mink, and striped skunk). Four species of reptiles and one amphibian were noted. Fisheries surveys were conducted to document the presence of gamefish, and sensitive-classified fish and aquatic invertebrates. Rainbow trout were the only fish collected within the boundaries of the proposed northern expansion area. 22 refs., 10 figs., 4 tabs.

  5. Wildlife Impact Assessment Palisades Project, Idaho, Final Report.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sather-Blair, Signe

    1985-02-01

    The Habitat Evaluation Procedures were used to evaluate pre- and post-construction habitat conditions of the US Bureau of Reclamation's Palisades Project in eastern Idaho. Eight evaluation species were selected with losses expressed in the number of Habitat Units (HU's). One HU is equivalent to one acre of prime habitat. The evaluation estimated that a loss of 2454 HU's of mule deer habitat, 2276 HU's of mink habitat, 2622 HU's of mallard habitat, 805 HU's of Canada goose habitat, 2331 HU's of ruffed grouse habitat, 5941 and 18,565 HU's for breeding and wintering bald eagles, and 1336 and 704 HU's for forested and scrub-shrub wetland nongame species occurred as a result of the project. The study area currently has 29 active osprey nests located around the reservoir and the mudflats probably provide more feeding habitat for migratory shore birds and waterfowl than was previously available along the river. A comparison of flow conditions on the South Fork of the Snake River below the dam between pre- and post-construction periods also could not substantiate claims that water releases from the dam were causing more Canada goose nest losses than flow in the river prior to construction. 41 refs., 16 figs., 9 tabs.

  6. Dating of major normal fault systems using thermochronology: An example from the Raft River detachment, Basin and Range, western United States

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wells, M.L.; Snee, L.W.; Blythe, A.E.

    2000-01-01

    Application of thermochronological techniques to major normal fault systems can resolve the timing of initiation and duration of extension, rates of motion on detachment faults, timing of ductile mylonite formation and passage of rocks through the crystal-plastic to brittle transition, and multiple events of extensional unroofing. Here we determine the above for the top-to-the-east Raft River detachment fault and shear zone by study of spatial gradients in 40Ar/39Ar and fission track cooling ages of footwall rocks and cooling histories and by comparison of cooling histories with deformation temperatures. Mica 40Ar/39Ar cooling ages indicate that extension-related cooling began at ???25-20 Ma, and apatite fission track ages show that motion on the Raft River detachment proceeded until ???7.4 Ma. Collective cooling curves show acceleration of cooling rates during extension, from 5-10??C/m.y. to rates in excess of 70-100??C/m.y. The apparent slip rate along the Raft River detachment, recorded in spatial gradients of apatite fission track ages, is 7 mm/yr between 13.5 and 7.4 Ma and is interpreted to record the rate of migration of a rolling hinge. Microstructural study of footwall mylonite indicates that deformation conditions were no higher than middle greenschist facies and that deformation occurred during cooling to cataclastic conditions. These data show that the shear zone and detachment fault represent a continuum produced by progressive exhumation and shearing during Miocene extension and preclude the possibility of a Mesozoic age for the ductile shear zone. Moderately rapid cooling in middle Eocene time likely records exhumation resulting from an older, oppositely rooted, extensional shear zone along the west side of the Grouse Creek, Raft River, and Albion Mountains. Copyright 2000 by the American Geophysical Union.

  7. Factors Affecting Diet Variation in the Pyrenean Rock Ptarmigan (Lagopus muta pyrenaica: Conservation Implications.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ricardo García-González

    Full Text Available The Pyrenean rock ptarmigan (Lagopus muta pyrenaica lives at one of the southernmost limits of the ptarmigan range. Their small population sizes and the impacts of global changes are limiting factors in the conservation of this threatened subspecies. An effective conservation policy requires precise basic knowledge of a species' food and habitat requirements, information that is practically non-existent for this Pyrenean population. Here, we describe the diet of a ptarmigan population in the Eastern Pyrenees, the environmental factors influencing its variability and the relationship between diet floristic composition and quality. Diet composition was determined by microhistological analysis of faeces and diet quality was estimated from free-urate faecal N content. Our results show that grouse diet is based mainly on arctic-alpine shrubs of the Ericaceae family, as well as dwarf willows (Salix spp. and Dryas octopetala. The most frequently consumed plant species was Rhododendron ferrugineum, but its abundance in the diet was negatively related to the diet nitrogen content. Conversely, the abundance of Salix spp., grass leaves and arthropods increased the nitrogen content of the diet. Seasonality associated with snow-melting contributed the most to variability in the Pyrenean ptarmigan diet, differentiating winter from spring/summer diets. The latter was characterised by a high consumption of dwarf willows, flowers, arthropods and tender forb leaves. Geographic area and sex-age class influenced diet variability to a lesser extent. Current temperature increases in the Pyrenees due to global warming may reduce the persistence and surface area of snow-packs where preferred plants for rock ptarmigan usually grow, thus reducing food availability. The high consumption of Rh. ferrugineum characterised the diet of the Pyrenean population. Given the toxicity of this plant for most herbivores, its potential negative effect on Pyrenean ptarmigan populations

  8. Game statistics for the island of Olkiluoto in 2013-2014

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Niemi, M.; Nieminen, M. [Faunatica Oy, Espoo (Finland)

    2015-05-15

    The game statistics for the island of Olkiluoto were updated in the summer 2014 and compared with earlier statistics. In addition, the estimated biomass of hunted animals was calculated. The reported game bag and population size estimates are based on the annual action report of local hunting club (Olkiluodon Metsaestysseura ry) and interviews of hunting club's secretary. No moose or deer inventories were made in the winter 2013-2014. The moose population has been a slightly increasing when comparing the previous year; there were 4-6 individuals on the island after hunting season. The number of moose varies because they tend to move between the island and mainland. Winter 2013-2014 was relatively easy for white-tailed deer and roe deer but the predation caused by lynxes inhibits the increase of populations. However, the current amount of lynxes on the island is unknown because the lack of snow in the winter 2013-2014. In the summer of 2014, there were several lynx observations. The number of hunted raccoon dogs was almost four times as large as in the previous year; altogether 26 individuals were killed. There were no noticeable changes in the number of other hunted small or medium-sized predators. American minks were not killed at all. The total number of hunted hares decreased from eleven to seven. Once again, mallard was the most common hunted bird species followed by hooded crow. Other bird species hunted were wood pigeon, herring gull, hazel grouse, wigeon, teal and common pochard. The total biomass hunted was approximately 1 225 kilos (1 170 for mammals and 55 for birds) which was 305 kilos more than in the previous year. The biomass destined to human consumption (i.e. game meat) was approximately 415 kilos (400 kilos for mammals, 15 for birds). (orig.)

  9. The long term response of birds to climate change: new results from a cold stage avifauna in northern England.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John R Stewart

    Full Text Available The early MIS 3 (55-40 Kyr BP associated with Middle Palaeolithic archaeology bird remains from Pin Hole, Creswell Crags, Derbyshire, England are analysed in the context of the new dating of the site's stratigraphy. The analysis is restricted to the material from the early MIS 3 level of the cave because the upper fauna is now known to include Holocene material as well as that from the Late Glacial. The results of the analysis confirm the presence of the taxa, possibly unexpected for a Late Pleistocene glacial deposit including records such as Alpine swift, demoiselle crane and long-legged buzzard with southern and/or eastern distributions today. These taxa are accompanied by more expected ones such as willow ptarmigan /red grouse and rock ptarmigan living today in northern and montane areas. Finally, there are temperate taxa normally requiring trees for nesting such as wood pigeon and grey heron. Therefore, the result of the analysis is that the avifauna of early MIS 3 in England included taxa whose ranges today do not overlap making it a non-analogue community similar to the many steppe-tundra mammalian faunas of the time. The inclusion of more temperate and woodland taxa is discussed in the light that parts of northern Europe may have acted as cryptic northern refugia for some such taxa during the last glacial. These records showing former ranges of taxa are considered in the light of modern phylogeographic studies as these often assume former ranges without considering the fossil record of those taxa. In addition to the anomalous combination of taxa during MIS 3 living in Derbyshire, the individuals of a number of the taxa are different in size and shape to members of the species today probably due to the high carrying capacity of the steppe-tundra.

  10. Veel kord regilaulu parallelismist, poeetilisest sünonüümiast ja analoogiast/ Once more on the parallelism of runosong, on the poetical synonymy and analogy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mari Sarv

    2016-01-01

    Relying on her own previous research on runosongs and proverbs demonstrating the mutual dependency of alliteration and parallelism typical to runosong (Sarv 1999, 2000, 2003, the results of syntactic analysis of runosong texts in H. Metslang’s dissertation (1978, Juhan Peegel’s definition of poetical synonyms in runosong (Peegel 2004, and Ewald Lang’s concept of quasisynonymy (Lang 1987, the author proposes the definition of the canonical parallelism of runosong as follows: it is a grammatical verse parallelism where all or some of the syntactic elements of the main verse have corresponding parallels in the successive lines representing the same general notion, and interpreted in the context of the parallelism as semantically equivalent, irrespective of their semantic relations in the colloquial language (equivalence, synonymy, metonymy, metaphor, analogy, antonymy, hyponymy etc.. Because of this semantical equivalence, the parallel words can be selected and combined into the parallel verses according to their formal features enabling the metrical alignment and alliteration. The article also points to the problems with the classification of runosong parallelism to the analogous and synonymous by Wolfgang Steinitz (1934, widely used in the runosong discourse: although analogy and synonymy probably represent the most remarkable semantic relations between the parallel lines, it is not easy to make clear distinction between synonymous and analogous lines (or concepts—even in the colloquial non-poetic language the synonyms are usually not equivalent in all aspects of meaning; the regular use of poetical synonyms in runosongs makes it impossible at all—the geese, ducks, and grouses as different birds are analogous in the colloquial language, but synonymous in the runosong all denoting the group of maidens.

  11. Assessing radiocaesium bioavailability in birds separation of urates from faecal pellets

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Clapp, J.; Beresford, N.A [Centre for Ecology and Hydrology, Lancaster, Environment Centre, Lancaster (United Kingdom)

    2004-07-01

    Concomitant analyses of urine and faeces present a methodology whereby the bioavailability of dietary radionuclides can be estimated. Whilst the collection of urine from most wild animals is impractical, birds excrete urine in a semi-solid state making field collection possible. In birds the end product of nitrogen metabolism is uric acid which is combined with albumin, calcium and potassium cations as a laminated sphere 0.5 to 15 {mu}m in size. Urate spheres are passed as a colloidal suspension in a proteinaceous fluid composed predominantly of water, albumin and electrolytes giving the characteristic white dollop' to avian guano. Some herbivorous bird species (e.g. Lagopus spp.) excrete comparatively dry-pelleted guano with distinct urate (white) and faecal (brown) components. These are readily separable as they form the predominant constituents of the opposite ends of the cylindrically shaped pellet. This raises the hypothesis that the separation and analyses of the faecal and urate component of herbivorous bird pellets presents a possible methodology to estimate the bioavailability of ingested radionuclides (i.e. as the apparent absorption coefficient). Preliminary sampling and analyses determined that the radiocaesium content of the urate component of Lagopus spp. guano was consistently higher than the faecal tip. The results of a field sampling programme to test this hypothesis are discussed. Lagopus Lagopus scoticus (Red grouse) guano (separated into urate and faecal components), Calluna vulgaris (predominant dietary component of L. lagopus) and soil samples were collected over a period one year from an upland area in northern England. Comparison of the urate to faecal radiocaesium activity concentrations is used to investigate potential changes in the dietary radiocaesium of L. lagopus throughout the year. (author)

  12. Physiological stress mediates the honesty of social signals.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gary R Bortolotti

    Full Text Available Extravagant ornaments used as social signals evolved to advertise their bearers' quality. The Immunocompetence Handicap Hypothesis proposes that testosterone-dependent ornaments reliably signal health and parasite resistance; however, empirical studies have shown mixed support. Alternatively, immune function and parasite resistance may be indirectly or directly related to glucocorticoid stress hormones. We propose that an understanding of the interplay between the individual and its environment, particularly how they cope with stressors, is crucial for understanding the honesty of social signals.We analyzed corticosterone deposited in growing feathers as an integrated measure of hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal activity in a wild territorial bird, the red grouse Lagopus lagopus scoticus. We manipulated two key, interrelated components, parasites and testosterone, which influence both ornamentation and fitness. Birds were initially purged of parasites, and later challenged with parasites or not, while at the same time being given testosterone or control implants, using a factorial experimental design. At the treatment level, testosterone enhanced ornamentation, while parasites reduced it, but only in males not implanted with testosterone. Among individuals, the degree to which both parasites and testosterone had an effect was strongly dependent on the amount of corticosterone in the feather grown during the experiment. The more stressors birds had experienced (i.e., higher corticosterone, the more parasites developed, and the less testosterone enhanced ornamentation.With this unique focus on the individual, and a novel, integrative, measure of response to stressors, we show that ornamentation is ultimately a product of the cumulative physiological response to environmental challenges. These findings lead toward a more realistic concept of honesty in signaling as well as a broader discussion of the concept of stress.

  13. Group decisions in biodiversity conservation: implications from game theory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frank, David M; Sarkar, Sahotra

    2010-05-27

    Decision analysis and game theory have proved useful tools in various biodiversity conservation planning and modeling contexts. This paper shows how game theory may be used to inform group decisions in biodiversity conservation scenarios by modeling conflicts between stakeholders to identify Pareto-inefficient Nash equilibria. These are cases in which each agent pursuing individual self-interest leads to a worse outcome for all, relative to other feasible outcomes. Three case studies from biodiversity conservation contexts showing this feature are modeled to demonstrate how game-theoretical representation can inform group decision-making. The mathematical theory of games is used to model three biodiversity conservation scenarios with Pareto-inefficient Nash equilibria: (i) a two-agent case involving wild dogs in South Africa; (ii) a three-agent raptor and grouse conservation scenario from the United Kingdom; and (iii) an n-agent fish and coral conservation scenario from the Philippines. In each case there is reason to believe that traditional mechanism-design solutions that appeal to material incentives may be inadequate, and the game-theoretical analysis recommends a resumption of further deliberation between agents and the initiation of trust--and confidence--building measures. Game theory can and should be used as a normative tool in biodiversity conservation contexts: identifying scenarios with Pareto-inefficient Nash equilibria enables constructive action in order to achieve (closer to) optimal conservation outcomes, whether by policy solutions based on mechanism design or otherwise. However, there is mounting evidence that formal mechanism-design solutions may backfire in certain cases. Such scenarios demand a return to group deliberation and the creation of reciprocal relationships of trust.

  14. Uranium potential of precambrian rocks in the Raft River area of northwestern Utah and south-central Idaho. Final report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Black, B.A.

    1980-09-01

    A total of 1214 geochemical samples were collected and analyzed. The sampling media included 334 waters, 616 stream sediments, and 264 rocks. In addition, some stratigraphic sections of Elba and Yost Quartzites and Archean metasedimentary rock were measured and sampled and numerous radiation determinations made of the various target units. Statistical evaluation of the geochemical data permitted recognition of 156 uranium anomalies, 52 in water, 79 in stream sediment, and 25 in rock. Geographically, 68 are located in the Grouse Creek Mountains, 43 in the Raft River Mountains, and 41 in the Albion Range. Interpretation of the various data leads to the conclusion that uranium anomalies relate to sparingly and moderately soluble uraniferous heavy minerals, which occur as sparse but widely distributed magmatic, detrital, and/or metamorphically segregated components in the target lithostratigraphic units. The uraniferous minerals known to occur and believed to account for the geochemical anomalies include allanite, monazite, zircon, and apatite. In some instances samarskite may be important. These heavy minerals contain uranium and geochemically related elements, such as Th, Ce, Y, and Zr, in sufficient quantities to account for both the conspicuous lithologic preference and the generally observed low amplitude of the anomalies. The various data generated in connection with this study, as well as those available in the published literature, collectively support the conclusion that the various Precambrian W and X lithostratigraphic units pre-selected for evaluation probably lack potential to host important Precambrian quartz-pebble conglomerate uranium deposits. Moreover it is also doubted that they possess any potential to host Proterozoic unconformity-type uranium deposits

  15. Oxidative stress and the effect of parasites on a carotenoid-based ornament.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mougeot, F; Martínez-Padilla, J; Blount, J D; Pérez-Rodríguez, L; Webster, L M I; Piertney, S B

    2010-02-01

    Oxidative stress, the physiological condition whereby the production of reactive oxygen and nitrogen species overwhelms the capacity of antioxidant defences, causes damage to key bio-molecules. It has been implicated in many diseases, and is proposed as a reliable currency in the trade-off between individual health and ornamentation. Whether oxidative stress mediates the expression of carotenoid-based signals, which are among the commonest signals of many birds, fish and reptiles, remains controversial. In the present study, we explored interactions between parasites, oxidative stress and the carotenoid-based ornamentation of red grouse Lagopus lagopus scoticus. We tested whether removing nematode parasites influenced both oxidative balance (levels of oxidative damage and circulating antioxidant defences) and carotenoid-based ornamentation. At the treatment group level, parasite purging enhanced the size and colouration of ornaments but did not significantly affect circulating carotenoids, antioxidant defences or oxidative damage. However, relative changes in these traits among individuals indicated that males with a greater number of parasites prior to treatment (parasite purging) showed a greater increase in the levels of circulating carotenoids and antioxidants, and a greater decrease in oxidative damage, than those with initially fewer parasites. At the individual level, a greater increase in carotenoid pigmentation was associated with a greater reduction in oxidative damage. Therefore, an individual's ability to express a carotenoid-based ornament appeared to be linked to its current oxidative balance and susceptibility to oxidative stress. Our experimental results suggest that oxidative stress can mediate the impact of parasites on carotenoid-based signals, and we discuss possible mechanisms linking carotenoid-based ornaments to oxidative stress.

  16. Game statistics for the island of Olkiluoto in 2013-2014

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Niemi, M.; Nieminen, M.

    2015-05-01

    The game statistics for the island of Olkiluoto were updated in the summer 2014 and compared with earlier statistics. In addition, the estimated biomass of hunted animals was calculated. The reported game bag and population size estimates are based on the annual action report of local hunting club (Olkiluodon Metsaestysseura ry) and interviews of hunting club's secretary. No moose or deer inventories were made in the winter 2013-2014. The moose population has been a slightly increasing when comparing the previous year; there were 4-6 individuals on the island after hunting season. The number of moose varies because they tend to move between the island and mainland. Winter 2013-2014 was relatively easy for white-tailed deer and roe deer but the predation caused by lynxes inhibits the increase of populations. However, the current amount of lynxes on the island is unknown because the lack of snow in the winter 2013-2014. In the summer of 2014, there were several lynx observations. The number of hunted raccoon dogs was almost four times as large as in the previous year; altogether 26 individuals were killed. There were no noticeable changes in the number of other hunted small or medium-sized predators. American minks were not killed at all. The total number of hunted hares decreased from eleven to seven. Once again, mallard was the most common hunted bird species followed by hooded crow. Other bird species hunted were wood pigeon, herring gull, hazel grouse, wigeon, teal and common pochard. The total biomass hunted was approximately 1 225 kilos (1 170 for mammals and 55 for birds) which was 305 kilos more than in the previous year. The biomass destined to human consumption (i.e. game meat) was approximately 415 kilos (400 kilos for mammals, 15 for birds). (orig.)

  17. Domestic chickens defy Rensch's rule: sexual size dimorphism in chicken breeds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Remeš, V; Székely, T

    2010-12-01

    Sexual size dimorphism (SSD), i.e. the difference in sizes of males and females, is a key evolutionary feature that is related to ecology, behaviour and life histories of organisms. Although the basic patterns of SSD are well documented for several major taxa, the processes generating SSD are poorly understood. Domesticated animals offer excellent opportunities for testing predictions of functional explanations of SSD theory because domestic stocks were often selected by humans for particular desirable traits. Here, we analyse SSD in 139 breeds of domestic chickens Gallus gallus domesticus and compare them to their wild relatives (pheasants, partridges and grouse; Phasianidae, 53 species). SSD was male-biased in all chicken breeds, because males were 21.5 ± 0.55% (mean ± SE) heavier than females. The extent of SSD did not differ among breed categories (cock fighting, ornamental and breeds selected for egg and meat production). SSD of chicken breeds was not different from wild pheasants and allies (23.5 ± 3.43%), although the wild ancestor of chickens, the red jungle fowl G. gallus, had more extreme SSD (male 68.8% heavier) than any domesticated breed. Male mass and female mass exhibited positive allometry among pheasants and allies, consistently with the Rensch's rule reported from various taxa. However, body mass scaled isometrically across chicken breeds. The latter results suggest that sex-specific selection on males vs. females is necessary to generate positive allometry, i.e. the Rensch's rule, in wild populations. © 2010 The Authors. Journal Compilation © 2010 European Society For Evolutionary Biology.

  18. Lesser prairie-chicken avoidance of trees in a grassland landscape

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lautenbach, Joseph M.; Plumb, Reid T.; Robinson, Samantha G.; Hagen, Christian A.; Haukos, David A.; Pitman, James C.

    2016-01-01

    Grasslands are among the most imperiled ecosystems in North America. Reasons that grasslands are threatened include conversion to row-crop agriculture, fragmentation, and changes in fire regimes. The reduction of fire processes in remaining prairies has resulted in tree encroachment and establishment in grasslands, further reducing grassland quantity and quality. Grassland birds have been experiencing precipitous population declines in recent decades, commensurate with landscape changes to grasslands. The lesser prairie-chicken (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus Ridgway) is a declining species of prairie grouse of conservation concern. We used second- and third-order habitat selection metrics to test if female lesser prairie-chickens avoid grasslands where trees were present. Our results indicated that female lesser prairie-chickens selected habitats avoiding the nearest trees by 283 m on average, nearly twice as far as would be expected at random. Lesser prairie-chickens were 40 times more likely to use habitats with tree densities of 0 trees ∙ ha− 1 than habitats with 5 trees ∙ ha− 1. Probability of use indicated that lesser prairie-chickens were 19 times more likely to use habitats 1000 m from the nearest tree when compared with using habitats 0 m from the nearest tree. Nest survival was not affected at densities 2 trees ∙ ha− 1. Avoidance of trees could be due to perceived increased predation risk, reduced habitat quality, or a combination of these potentially confounding factors. Preventing further establishment and expansion of trees in landscapes occupied by lesser prairie-chickens could contribute to the continued persistence of the species. Additionally, restoring grasslands through tree removal may facilitate conservation efforts for grassland species such as the lesser prairie-chicken by improving habitat quality and promoting expansion of occupied range.

  19. Group decisions in biodiversity conservation: implications from game theory.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David M Frank

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Decision analysis and game theory have proved useful tools in various biodiversity conservation planning and modeling contexts. This paper shows how game theory may be used to inform group decisions in biodiversity conservation scenarios by modeling conflicts between stakeholders to identify Pareto-inefficient Nash equilibria. These are cases in which each agent pursuing individual self-interest leads to a worse outcome for all, relative to other feasible outcomes. Three case studies from biodiversity conservation contexts showing this feature are modeled to demonstrate how game-theoretical representation can inform group decision-making. METHODOLOGY AND PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: The mathematical theory of games is used to model three biodiversity conservation scenarios with Pareto-inefficient Nash equilibria: (i a two-agent case involving wild dogs in South Africa; (ii a three-agent raptor and grouse conservation scenario from the United Kingdom; and (iii an n-agent fish and coral conservation scenario from the Philippines. In each case there is reason to believe that traditional mechanism-design solutions that appeal to material incentives may be inadequate, and the game-theoretical analysis recommends a resumption of further deliberation between agents and the initiation of trust--and confidence--building measures. CONCLUSIONS AND SIGNIFICANCE: Game theory can and should be used as a normative tool in biodiversity conservation contexts: identifying scenarios with Pareto-inefficient Nash equilibria enables constructive action in order to achieve (closer to optimal conservation outcomes, whether by policy solutions based on mechanism design or otherwise. However, there is mounting evidence that formal mechanism-design solutions may backfire in certain cases. Such scenarios demand a return to group deliberation and the creation of reciprocal relationships of trust.

  20. A comparison of pedigree- and DNA-based measures for identifying inbreeding depression in the critically endangered Attwater's Prairie-chicken.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hammerly, Susan C; Morrow, Michael E; Johnson, Jeff A

    2013-11-01

    The primary goal of captive breeding programmes for endangered species is to prevent extinction, a component of which includes the preservation of genetic diversity and avoidance of inbreeding. This is typically accomplished by minimizing mean kinship in the population, thereby maintaining equal representation of the genetic founders used to initiate the captive population. If errors in the pedigree do exist, such an approach becomes less effective for minimizing inbreeding depression. In this study, both pedigree- and DNA-based methods were used to assess whether inbreeding depression existed in the captive population of the critically endangered Attwater's Prairie-chicken (Tympanuchus cupido attwateri), a subspecies of prairie grouse that has experienced a significant decline in abundance and concurrent reduction in neutral genetic diversity. When examining the captive population for signs of inbreeding, variation in pedigree-based inbreeding coefficients (f(pedigree)) was less than that obtained from DNA-based methods (f(DNA)). Mortality of chicks and adults in captivity were also positively correlated with parental relatedness (r(DNA)) and f(DNA), respectively, while no correlation was observed with pedigree-based measures when controlling for additional variables such as age, breeding facility, gender and captive/release status. Further, individual homozygosity by loci (HL) and parental rDNA values were positively correlated with adult mortality in captivity and the occurrence of a lethal congenital defect in chicks, respectively, suggesting that inbreeding may be a contributing factor increasing the frequency of this condition among Attwater's Prairie-chickens. This study highlights the importance of using DNA-based methods to better inform management decisions when pedigrees are incomplete or errors may exist due to uncertainty in pairings. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  1. Environmental assessment of remedial action at the Gunnison Uranium Mill Tailings Site near Gunnison, Colorado. Final

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    1992-02-01

    The presence of contaminated uranium mill tailings adjacent to the city of Gunnison has been a local concern for many years. The following issues were identified during public meetings that were held by the DOE prior to distribution of an earlier version of this EA. Many of these issues will require mitigation. Groundwater contamination; in December 1989, a herd of 105 antelope were introduced in an area that includes the Landfill disposal site. There is concern that remedial action-related traffic in the area would result in antelope mortality. The proposed Tenderfoot Mountain haul road may restrict antelope access to their water supply; a second wildlife issue concerns the potential reduction in sage grouse use of breeding grounds (leks) and nesting habitat; the proposed Tenderfoot Mountain haul road would cross areas designated as wetlands by US Army Corps of Engineers (COE); the proposed disposal site is currently used for grazing by cattle six weeks a year in the spring. Additional concerns were stated in comments on a previous version of this EA. The proposed action is to consolidate and remove all contaminated materials associated with the Gunnison processing site to the Landfill disposal site six air miles east of Gunnison. All structures on the site (e.g., water tower, office buildings) were demolished in 1991. The debris is being stored on the site until it can be incorporated into the disposal cell at the disposal site. All contaminated materials would be trucked to the Landfill disposal site on a to-be-constructed haul road that crosses BLM-administered land.

  2. Assessing radiocaesium bioavailability in birds separation of urates from faecal pellets

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Clapp, J.; Beresford, N.A

    2004-01-01

    Concomitant analyses of urine and faeces present a methodology whereby the bioavailability of dietary radionuclides can be estimated. Whilst the collection of urine from most wild animals is impractical, birds excrete urine in a semi-solid state making field collection possible. In birds the end product of nitrogen metabolism is uric acid which is combined with albumin, calcium and potassium cations as a laminated sphere 0.5 to 15 μm in size. Urate spheres are passed as a colloidal suspension in a proteinaceous fluid composed predominantly of water, albumin and electrolytes giving the characteristic white dollop' to avian guano. Some herbivorous bird species (e.g. Lagopus spp.) excrete comparatively dry-pelleted guano with distinct urate (white) and faecal (brown) components. These are readily separable as they form the predominant constituents of the opposite ends of the cylindrically shaped pellet. This raises the hypothesis that the separation and analyses of the faecal and urate component of herbivorous bird pellets presents a possible methodology to estimate the bioavailability of ingested radionuclides (i.e. as the apparent absorption coefficient). Preliminary sampling and analyses determined that the radiocaesium content of the urate component of Lagopus spp. guano was consistently higher than the faecal tip. The results of a field sampling programme to test this hypothesis are discussed. Lagopus Lagopus scoticus (Red grouse) guano (separated into urate and faecal components), Calluna vulgaris (predominant dietary component of L. lagopus) and soil samples were collected over a period one year from an upland area in northern England. Comparison of the urate to faecal radiocaesium activity concentrations is used to investigate potential changes in the dietary radiocaesium of L. lagopus throughout the year. (author)

  3. Draft environmental impact statement: KENETECH/PacifiCorp Windpower Project, Carbon County, Wyoming

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1995-01-01

    This Draft Environmental Impact Statement assesses the environmental consequences of a proposed windpower development project in Carbon County, between Arlington and Hanna, Wyoming. Public scoping commenced in January 1994. All issues raised during scoping and interdisciplinary team preparation of the analysis are addressed. The proposed project entails the erection of approximately 1,390 wind turbine generators and associated facilities (e.g., roads, substations, distribution and communications lines) by KENETECH Windpower, Inc. A 230-kV transmission line would be built by PacifiCorp, Inc. to connect a proposed substation on Foote Creek Rim near Arlington to the Miner's substation near Hanna. The proposed project would use standard procedures as currently employed by other right-of-way projects, plus additional project-specific and site-specific mitigation measures to ensure that project impacts are minimized on all important resources. Impacts to most resources would be negligible to moderate during the life-of-project. Potentially significant impacts resulting from the project include avian mortality; declining avian populations; threatened, endangered, candidate, and/or state sensitive species mortality and/or habitat loss; disturbance to nearby residents due to noise; changes in visual resources; disturbance of important Native American traditional sites; changes in plant community species composition due to snow redistribution; displacement of big game due to windfarm operation; and loss of sage grouse nesting habitat. The proposed project could also have numerous beneficial impacts including increased revenues generated by taxes, increased employment, and benefits derived from using a nonpolluting resource for electric power generation

  4. Final environmental impact statement Kenetech/PacifiCorp Windpower Project Carbon County, Wyoming

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1995-08-01

    The Draft and Final Environmental Impact Statements (DEIS and FEIS) assess the environmental consequences of a proposed windpower energy development in Carbon County, Wyoming. This abbreviated FEIS revises and supplements the DEIS for the project and addresses comments expressed for the DEIS. The proposed project entails the erection of approximately 1,390 wind turbine generators and associated facilities (e.g., roads, substations, distribution and communications lines) by KENETECH Windpower, Inc. A 230-kV transmission line would be built by PacifiCorp, Inc. to connect a proposed substation on Foote Creek Rim near Arlington to the Miner's substation near Hanna. The proposed project would use standard procedures as currently employed by other right-of-way projects, plus additional project-specific and site-specific mitigation measures to ensure that project impacts are minimized on all important resources. Impacts to most resources would be negligible to moderate during the life-of-project. Potentially significant impacts from the project include avian mortality; declining avian populations; threatened, endangered, candidate, and/or state sensitive species mortality and/or habitat loss; disturbance to nearby residents due to noise; changes in visual resources; disturbance of important Native American traditional sites; changes in plant community species composition due to snow redistribution; displacement of big game due to windfarm operation; and loss of sage grouse nesting habitat. The proposed project could also have numerous beneficial impacts including increased revenues generated by taxes, increased employment, and benefits derived from using a nonpolluting resource for electric power generation

  5. U.S. Geological Survey science for the Wyoming Landscape Conservation Initiative—2015 annual report

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bowen, Zachary H.; Aldridge, Cameron L.; Anderson, Patrick J.; Assal, Timothy J.; Bartos, Timothy T.; Chalfoun, Anna D.; Chong, Geneva W.; Dematatis, Marie K.; Eddy-Miller, Cheryl; Garman, Steven L.; Germaine, Stephen S.; Homer, Collin G.; Kauffman, Matthew J.; Huber, Christopher C.; Manier, Daniel J.; Melcher, Cynthia P.; Miller, Kirk A.; Norkin, Tamar; Sanders, Lindsey E.; Walters, Annika W.; Wilson, Anna B.; Wyckoff, Teal B.

    2016-09-28

    also a special session on the effectiveness of Wyoming’s Sage-Grouse Executive Order. Combined, USGS presentations provided WLCI partners with a wealth of information and conservation tools.The project completed in 2015 yielded an index of important agricultural lands in the WLCI region. The index improves upon existing measures of agricultural productivity and provides planners and managers with additional values to consider when making decisions about land use and conservation actions. The two new projects include an analysis of satellite imagery to quantify sagebrush productivity and mortality, and an evaluation of how groundwater and small streams interact in the upper Green River Basin. Initiated in response to concern among WLCI partners that large areas of sagebrush appear to have died recently, the sagebrush study objectives are to assess effects of these mortality events on overall sagebrush ecosystem productivity, evaluate the feasibility of using satellite imagery to detect patterns in sagebrush mortality over time, and identify factors driving these mortality events. The groundwater-streamflow interaction study is being conducted by hydrologists and fish ecologists to better understand how groundwater-streamflow interactions are affected by energy-resource development and how native fish communities are affected by these factors. Expected outcomes of both new projects will provide WLCI partners with additional information and decision-support tools.Highlights of ongoing science foundation activities included simulations of nine alternative build-out scenarios for oil and gas development and an associated online fact sheet that explains how the simulations were conducted, with an applied example for the Atlantic Rim. Also completed in 2015 was an update of the USGS online inventory of mineral resources data, and publication of a USGS uranium resource survey for the WLCI region. Combined, the outcomes of this work provide decisionmakers and managers with

  6. Intolerance and Violence Against Doctors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singh, Meharban

    2017-10-01

    Intolerance and grouse against doctors is a global phenomenon but India seems to lead the world in violence against doctors. According to World Health Organization, about 8-38% healthcare workers suffer physical violence at some point in their careers. Many more are verbally abused or threatened. Public is almost behaving like health sector terrorists. The spate of increasing attacks on doctors by damaging their property and causing physical injury is not acceptable by any civilized society. The public is becoming increasingly intolerant to a large number of social issues because of poor governance and vote bank politics. There is a need to arrest the development of further distrust between doctors and their patients/relatives, otherwise it will compromise all achievements of medical science and adversely affect healing capabilities of doctors. Rude and aggressive behavior of the patients or their family members, and arrogant and lackadaisical approach of the doctor, adversely affects the doctor-patient relationship and the outcome of the patient. The doctors, hospital administration and government must exercise "zero tolerance" with respect to acts of violence against healthcare professionals. It is possible to reduce the incidence of intolerance against doctors but difficult to eliminate it completely. The healthcare providers should demonstrate greater compassion and empathy with improved communication skills. The hospitals must have adequate infrastructure, facilities and staff to handle emergencies without delay and with due confidence and skills. The security of healthcare providers, especially in sensitive areas, should be improved by having adequate number of security guards, frisking facilities, extensive CCTV network and availability of "Quick response team" to handle unruly mob. In case of any grievances for alleged mismanagement, the public should handle the situation in a civilized manner and seek redressal through Medical Protection Act and legal

  7. The Long Term Response of Birds to Climate Change: New Results from a Cold Stage Avifauna in Northern England

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stewart, John R.

    2015-01-01

    The early MIS 3 (55–40 Kyr BP associated with Middle Palaeolithic archaeology) bird remains from Pin Hole, Creswell Crags, Derbyshire, England are analysed in the context of the new dating of the site’s stratigraphy. The analysis is restricted to the material from the early MIS 3 level of the cave because the upper fauna is now known to include Holocene material as well as that from the Late Glacial. The results of the analysis confirm the presence of the taxa, possibly unexpected for a Late Pleistocene glacial deposit including records such as Alpine swift, demoiselle crane and long-legged buzzard with southern and/or eastern distributions today. These taxa are accompanied by more expected ones such as willow ptarmigan /red grouse and rock ptarmigan living today in northern and montane areas. Finally, there are temperate taxa normally requiring trees for nesting such as wood pigeon and grey heron. Therefore, the result of the analysis is that the avifauna of early MIS 3 in England included taxa whose ranges today do not overlap making it a non-analogue community similar to the many steppe-tundra mammalian faunas of the time. The inclusion of more temperate and woodland taxa is discussed in the light that parts of northern Europe may have acted as cryptic northern refugia for some such taxa during the last glacial. These records showing former ranges of taxa are considered in the light of modern phylogeographic studies as these often assume former ranges without considering the fossil record of those taxa. In addition to the anomalous combination of taxa during MIS 3 living in Derbyshire, the individuals of a number of the taxa are different in size and shape to members of the species today probably due to the high carrying capacity of the steppe-tundra. PMID:25992609

  8. Eocene and Miocene extension, meteoric fluid infiltration, and core complex formation in the Great Basin (Raft River Mountains, Utah)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Methner, Katharina; Mulch, Andreas; Teyssier, Christian; Wells, Michael L.; Cosca, Michael A.; Gottardi, Raphael; Gebelin, Aude; Chamberlain, C. Page

    2015-01-01

    Metamorphic core complexes (MCCs) in the North American Cordillera reflect the effects of lithospheric extension and contribute to crustal adjustments both during and after a protracted subduction history along the Pacific plate margin. While the Miocene-to-recent history of most MCCs in the Great Basin, including the Raft River-Albion-Grouse Creek MCC, is well documented, early Cenozoic tectonic fabrics are commonly severely overprinted. We present stable isotope, geochronological (40Ar/39Ar), and microstructural data from the Raft River detachment shear zone. Hydrogen isotope ratios of syntectonic white mica (δ2Hms) from mylonitic quartzite within the shear zone are very low (−90‰ to −154‰, Vienna SMOW) and result from multiphase synkinematic interaction with surface-derived fluids. 40Ar/39Ar geochronology reveals Eocene (re)crystallization of white mica with δ2Hms ≥ −154‰ in quartzite mylonite of the western segment of the detachment system. These δ2Hms values are distinctively lower than in localities farther east (δ2Hms ≥ −125‰), where 40Ar/39Ar geochronological data indicate Miocene (18–15 Ma) extensional shearing and mylonitic fabric formation. These data indicate that very low δ2H surface-derived fluids penetrated the brittle-ductile transition as early as the mid-Eocene during a first phase of exhumation along a detachment rooted to the east. In the eastern part of the core complex, prominent top-to-the-east ductile shearing, mid-Miocene 40Ar/39Ar ages, and higher δ2H values of recrystallized white mica, indicate Miocene structural and isotopic overprinting of Eocene fabrics.

  9. Inferring the nature of anthropogenic threats from long-term abundance records.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shoemaker, Kevin T; Akçakaya, H Resit

    2015-02-01

    Diagnosing the processes that threaten species persistence is critical for recovery planning and risk forecasting. Dominant threats are typically inferred by experts on the basis of a patchwork of informal methods. Transparent, quantitative diagnostic tools would contribute much-needed consistency, objectivity, and rigor to the process of diagnosing anthropogenic threats. Long-term census records, available for an increasingly large and diverse set of taxa, may exhibit characteristic signatures of specific threatening processes and thereby provide information for threat diagnosis. We developed a flexible Bayesian framework for diagnosing threats on the basis of long-term census records and diverse ancillary sources of information. We tested this framework with simulated data from artificial populations subjected to varying degrees of exploitation and habitat loss and several real-world abundance time series for which threatening processes are relatively well understood: bluefin tuna (Thunnus maccoyii) and Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua) (exploitation) and Red Grouse (Lagopus lagopus scotica) and Eurasian Skylark (Alauda arvensis) (habitat loss). Our method correctly identified the process driving population decline for over 90% of time series simulated under moderate to severe threat scenarios. Successful identification of threats approached 100% for severe exploitation and habitat loss scenarios. Our method identified threats less successfully when threatening processes were weak and when populations were simultaneously affected by multiple threats. Our method selected the presumed true threat model for all real-world case studies, although results were somewhat ambiguous in the case of the Eurasian Skylark. In the latter case, incorporation of an ancillary source of information (records of land-use change) increased the weight assigned to the presumed true model from 70% to 92%, illustrating the value of the proposed framework in bringing diverse sources of

  10. Listeria monocytogenes infection in poultry and its public health importance with special reference to food borne zoonoses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dhama, Kuldeep; Verma, Amit Kumar; Rajagunalan, S; Kumar, Amit; Tiwari, Ruchi; Chakraborty, Sandip; Kumar, Rajesh

    2013-04-01

    Listeriosis is a disease that causes septicemia or encephalitis in humans, animals and birds. Although, the disease is rare and sporadic in poultry but if occurs then causes septicemia or sometimes localized encephalitis. Occasionally, the disease is seen in young chicks and the causative agent, like in humans and animals, is Listeria monocytogenes. The organism is capable to infect almost all animals and poultry; however, outbreaks of listeriosis are infrequent in birds. It is widely distributed among avian species and chickens, turkeys, waterfowl (geese, ducks), game birds, pigeons, parrots, wood grouse, snowy owl, eagle, canaries, which appear to be the most commonly affected. Chickens are thought to be the carriers of Listeria and also the prime reservoirs for the infection and thus contaminate the litter and environment of the poultry production units. Listeriosis is often noticed along with other poultry diseases such as coccidiosis, infectious coryza, salmonellosis, campylobacteriosis and parasitic infections, signifying the opportunistic nature of the organism. Intestinal colonization of poultry and the presence of L. monocytogenes in feces represent a potential source of the organism for listeriosis in ruminants. Man gets infection from raw broiler meat due to Listeria contamination and unhygienic conditions of the processing area, rather than acquiring direct infection from birds. With the changing food habits of the people, the health consciousness is also increasing and since listeriosis has now been recognized as an emerging food borne zoonoses. Therefore, this review has been compiled to make aware the poultry producers and the consumers of poultry meat/products regarding the importance of the disease and its public health significance.

  11. Environmental assessment of remedial action at the Gunnison Uranium Mill Tailings Site near Gunnison, Colorado

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1992-02-01

    The presence of contaminated uranium mill tailings adjacent to the city of Gunnison has been a local concern for many years. The following issues were identified during public meetings that were held by the DOE prior to distribution of an earlier version of this EA. Many of these issues will require mitigation. Groundwater contamination; in December 1989, a herd of 105 antelope were introduced in an area that includes the Landfill disposal site. There is concern that remedial action-related traffic in the area would result in antelope mortality. The proposed Tenderfoot Mountain haul road may restrict antelope access to their water supply; a second wildlife issue concerns the potential reduction in sage grouse use of breeding grounds (leks) and nesting habitat; the proposed Tenderfoot Mountain haul road would cross areas designated as wetlands by US Army Corps of Engineers (COE); the proposed disposal site is currently used for grazing by cattle six weeks a year in the spring. Additional concerns were stated in comments on a previous version of this EA. The proposed action is to consolidate and remove all contaminated materials associated with the Gunnison processing site to the Landfill disposal site six air miles east of Gunnison. All structures on the site (e.g., water tower, office buildings) were demolished in 1991. The debris is being stored on the site until it can be incorporated into the disposal cell at the disposal site. All contaminated materials would be trucked to the Landfill disposal site on a to-be-constructed haul road that crosses BLM-administered land

  12. Historical fire regimes, reconstructed from land-survey data, led to complexity and fluctuation in sagebrush landscapes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bukowski, Beth E; Baker, William L

    2013-04-01

    Sagebrush landscapes provide habitat for Sage-Grouse and other sagebrush obligates, yet historical fire regimes and the structure of historical sagebrush landscapes are poorly known, hampering ecological restoration and management. To remedy this, General Land Office Survey (GLO) survey notes were used to reconstruct over two million hectares of historical vegetation for four sagebrush-dominated (Artemisia spp.) study areas in the western United States. Reconstructed vegetation was analyzed for fire indicators used to identify historical fires and reconstruct historical fire regimes. Historical fire-size distributions were inverse-J shaped, and one fire > 100 000 ha was identified. Historical fire rotations were estimated at 171-342 years for Wyoming big sagebrush (A. tridentata ssp. wyomingensis) and 137-217 years for mountain big sagebrush (A. tridentata ssp. vaseyana). Historical fire and patch sizes were significantly larger in Wyoming big sagebrush than mountain big sagebrush, and historical fire rotations were significantly longer in Wyoming big sagebrush than mountain big sagebrush. Historical fire rotations in Wyoming were longer than those in other study areas. Fine-scale mosaics of burned and unburned area and larger unburned inclusions within fire perimeters were less common than in modern fires. Historical sagebrush landscapes were dominated by large, contiguous areas of sagebrush, though large grass-dominated areas and finer-scale mosaics of grass and sagebrush were also present in smaller amounts. Variation in sagebrush density was a common source of patchiness, and areas classified as "dense" made up 24.5% of total sagebrush area, compared to 16.3% for "scattered" sagebrush. Results suggest significant differences in historical and modern fire regimes. Modern fire rotations in Wyoming big sagebrush are shorter than historical fire rotations. Results also suggest that historical sagebrush landscapes would have fluctuated, because of infrequent

  13. Navigating the high seas of Federal Programs to ensure usable science delivery

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bachelet, D. M.; Gough, M.; Baker, B.; Sheehan, T.; Mutch, T.; Brown, M.

    2016-12-01

    Conservation Biology Institute (CBI) has been developing web applications to serve credible and usable information that allows land stewards, as well as the general public, to better understand the challenges posed by on-going environmental change. Working with 18 Landscape Conservation Cooperatives (LCCs), CBI has developed Conservation Atlases that allow users to visualize regional spatial data. Some include specific tools such as the Conservation Blueprint in the South Atlantic LCC conservation atlas which is a living spatial plan that identifies priority areas for shared conservation action based on ecosystem indicator condition and connectivity. More than 400 people from over 100 different organizations have actively participated in its development so far. CBI worked closely with 4 LCCs to design a Landscape Climate Dashboard (http://bit.ly/2atu8Df) that provides CMIP5 climate projections averaged over federally and tribally protected lands in the western US. With support from BLM and Great Basin LCC, a Sagebrush Climate Console provides managers short-term NOAA forecasts, CMIP5 climate projections, regional intactness and site sensitivity over sagebrush extent and grouse range. The USDA Pacific Northwest Climate Hub and the US Forest Service are currently funding a collaborative effort between CBI programmers, USFS and Oregon State University forest geneticists to develop a seedlot source tool for the conterminous US and Alaska. This tool has inspired Great Basin sagebrush restoration scientists who have collected information on seed provenance and will hopefully soon collaborate to help develop the first seed source tool for sagebrush managers. Furthermore, with support from USDA Northwest Climate Hub, CBI's Data Basin site (http://bit.ly/2aLRlhZ) is providing downscaled CMIP5 climate projections and impacts from a Climate Science Center and NOAA Regional Integrated Science Assessment funded project that was the result of a collaborative effort between

  14. Complete nucleotide sequence of the Coturnix chinensis (blue-breasted quail) mitochondrial genome and a phylogenetic analysis with related species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nishibori, M; Tsudzuki, M; Hayashi, T; Yamamoto, Y; Yasue, H

    2002-01-01

    Coturnix chinensis (blue-breasted quail) has been classically grouped in Galliformes Phasianidae Coturnix, based on morphologic features and biochemical evidence. Since the blue-breasted quail has the smallest body size among the species of Galliformes, in addition to a short generation time and an excellent reproductive performance, it is a possible model fowl for breeding and physiological studies of the Coturnix japonica (Japanese quail) and Gallus gallus domesticus (chicken), which are classified in the same family as blue-breasted quail. However, since its phylogenetic position in the family Phasianidae has not been determined conclusively, the sequence of the entire blue-breasted quail mitochondria (mt) genome was obtained to provide genetic information for phylogenetic analysis in the present study. The blue-breasted quail mtDNA was found to be a circular DNA of 16,687 base pairs (bp) with the same genomic structure as the mtDNAs of Japanese quail and chicken, though it is smaller than Japanese quail and chicken mtDNAs by 10 bp and 88 bp, respectively. The sequence identity of all mitochondrial genes, including those for 12S and 16S ribosomal RNAs, between blue-breasted quail and Japanese quail ranged from 84.5% to 93.5%; between blue-breasted quail and chicken, sequence identity ranged from 78.0% to 89.6%. In order to obtain information on the phylogenetic position of blue-breasted quail in Galliformes Phasianidae, the 2,184 bp sequence comprising NADH dehydrogenase subunit 2 and cytochrome b genes available for eight species in Galliformes [Japanese quail, chicken, Gallus varius (green junglefowl), Bambusicola thoracica (Chinese bamboo partridge), Pavo cristatus (Indian peafowl), Perdix perdix (gray partridge), Phasianus colchicus (ring-neck pheasant), and Tympanchus phasianellus (sharp-tailed grouse)] together with that of Aythya americana (redhead) were examined using a maximum likelihood (ML) method. The ML analyses on the first/second codon positions

  15. Habitats and landscapes associated with bird species in a lowland conifer-dominated ecosystem

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Edmund J. Zlonis

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Human-induced effects on lowland conifer forests in hemiboreal regions are increasing because of expanded use of these northern ecosystems for raw materials, energy, and minerals as well as the potential effects of climatic changes. These forests support many breeding bird species across the Holarctic and allow the persistence of several boreal bird species in hemiboreal and even temperate regions. These bird species are of particular conservation concern as shifting patterns northward in forest composition caused by climate change will likely affect their populations. However, effective management and conservation options are limited because the specifics of these species' breeding habitats are not well understood. We modeled and mapped habitat suitability for 11 species of boreal birds that breed in the lowland conifer forests of the Agassiz Lowlands Ecological Subsection in northern Minnesota and are likely to have reduced breeding habitat in the future: Spruce Grouse (Falcipennis canadensis, Black-backed Woodpecker (Picoides arcticus, Olive-sided Flycatcher (Contopus cooperi, Yellow-bellied Flycatcher (Empidonax flaviventris, Boreal Chickadee (Poecile hudsonicus, Golden-crowned Kinglet (Regulus satrapa, Ruby-crowned Kinglet (Regulus calendula, Swainson's Thrush (Catharus ustulatus, Connecticut Warbler (Oporornis agilis, Palm Warbler (Setophaga palmarum, and Dark-eyed Junco (Junco hyemalis. Sets of 7 to 16 potential environmental covariates, including both stand-level and landscape attributes, were used to develop individual species models. Within this lowland conifer-dominated ecosystem, we found significant selection for specific forest and landscape characteristics by all but one of these species, with the best models including between one and nine variables. Habitat suitability maps were developed from these models and predictions tested with an independent dataset. Model performance depended on species, correctly predicting 56-96% of

  16. U.S. Geological Survey science for the Wyoming Landscape Conservation Initiative—2016 annual report

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bowen, Zachary H.; Aikens, Ellen; Aldridge, Cameron L.; Anderson, Patrick J.; Assal, Timothy J.; Chalfoun, Anna D.; Chong, Geneva W.; Eddy-Miller, Cheryl; Garman, Steven L.; Germaine, Stephen S.; Homer, Collin G.; Johnston, Aaron; Kauffman, Matthew J.; Manier, Daniel J.; Melcher, Cynthia P.; Miller, Kirk A.; Walters, Annika W.; Wheeler, Jerrod D.; Wieferich, Daniel; Wilson, Anna B.; Wyckoff, Teal B.; Zeigenfuss, Linda C.

    2018-05-10

    was in review at the end of the fiscal year, and seven projects monitoring water and vegetation (including changes in sagebrush cover and patterns of sagebrush mortality) continued through the year. USGS scientists continued many projects in FY2016 that evaluate the effectiveness of habitat conservation actions (including sagebrush, cheatgrass, and aspen habitat treatments) and provide tools in support of mechanistic studies of wildlife. In FY2016, USGS scientists, along with university and State partners, continued work on five focal wildlife species/communities (pygmy rabbits [Brachylagus idahoensis], greater sage grouse , mule deer, sagebrush songbirds, and native fish). In FY2016, the USGS Information Management Team presented information to WLCI scientists on how USGS tools and resources can be used to fulfill the requirements of new USGS policies regarding data release, data management, and data visualization.

  17. Modeling regeneration responses of big sagebrush (Artemisia tridentata) to abiotic conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schlaepfer, Daniel R.; Lauenroth, William K.; Bradford, John B.

    2014-01-01

    Ecosystems dominated by big sagebrush, Artemisia tridentata Nuttall (Asteraceae), which are the most widespread ecosystems in semiarid western North America, have been affected by land use practices and invasive species. Loss of big sagebrush and the decline of associated species, such as greater sage-grouse, are a concern to land managers and conservationists. However, big sagebrush regeneration remains difficult to achieve by restoration and reclamation efforts and there is no regeneration simulation model available. We present here the first process-based, daily time-step, simulation model to predict yearly big sagebrush regeneration including relevant germination and seedling responses to abiotic factors. We estimated values, uncertainty, and importance of 27 model parameters using a total of 1435 site-years of observation. Our model explained 74% of variability of number of years with successful regeneration at 46 sites. It also achieved 60% overall accuracy predicting yearly regeneration success/failure. Our results identify specific future research needed to improve our understanding of big sagebrush regeneration, including data at the subspecies level and improved parameter estimates for start of seed dispersal, modified wet thermal-time model of germination, and soil water potential influences. We found that relationships between big sagebrush regeneration and climate conditions were site specific, varying across the distribution of big sagebrush. This indicates that statistical models based on climate are unsuitable for understanding range-wide regeneration patterns or for assessing the potential consequences of changing climate on sagebrush regeneration and underscores the value of this process-based model. We used our model to predict potential regeneration across the range of sagebrush ecosystems in the western United States, which confirmed that seedling survival is a limiting factor, whereas germination is not. Our results also suggested that modeled

  18. Simulated big sagebrush regeneration supports predicted changes at the trailing and leading edges of distribution shifts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schlaepfer, Daniel R.; Taylor, Kyle A.; Pennington, Victoria E.; Nelson, Kellen N.; Martin, Trace E.; Rottler, Caitlin M.; Lauenroth, William K.; Bradford, John B.

    2015-01-01

    Many semi-arid plant communities in western North America are dominated by big sagebrush. These ecosystems are being reduced in extent and quality due to economic development, invasive species, and climate change. These pervasive modifications have generated concern about the long-term viability of sagebrush habitat and sagebrush-obligate wildlife species (notably greater sage-grouse), highlighting the need for better understanding of the future big sagebrush distribution, particularly at the species' range margins. These leading and trailing edges of potential climate-driven sagebrush distribution shifts are likely to be areas most sensitive to climate change. We used a process-based regeneration model for big sagebrush, which simulates potential germination and seedling survival in response to climatic and edaphic conditions and tested expectations about current and future regeneration responses at trailing and leading edges that were previously identified using traditional species distribution models. Our results confirmed expectations of increased probability of regeneration at the leading edge and decreased probability of regeneration at the trailing edge below current levels. Our simulations indicated that soil water dynamics at the leading edge became more similar to the typical seasonal ecohydrological conditions observed within the current range of big sagebrush ecosystems. At the trailing edge, an increased winter and spring dryness represented a departure from conditions typically supportive of big sagebrush. Our results highlighted that minimum and maximum daily temperatures as well as soil water recharge and summer dry periods are important constraints for big sagebrush regeneration. Overall, our results confirmed previous predictions, i.e., we see consistent changes in areas identified as trailing and leading edges; however, we also identified potential local refugia within the trailing edge, mostly at sites at higher elevation. Decreasing

  19. Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) Report; Iskuulpa Wildlife Mitigation and Watershed Project, Technical Report 1998-2003.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Quaempts, Eric

    2003-01-01

    U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) were used to determine the number of habitat units credited to evaluate lands acquired and leased in Eskuulpa Watershed, a Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation watershed and wildlife mitigation project. The project is designed to partially credit habitat losses incurred by BPA for the construction of the John Day and McNary hydroelectric facilities on the Columbia River. Upland and riparian forest, upland and riparian shrub, and grasslands cover types were included in the evaluation. Indicator species included downy woodpecker (Picuides puhescens), black-capped chickadee (Pams atricopillus), blue grouse (Beadragapus obscurus), great blue heron (Ardea herodias), yellow warbler (Dendroica petschia), mink (Mustela vison), and Western meadowlark (Sturnello neglects). Habitat surveys were conducted in 1998 and 1999 in accordance with published HEP protocols and included 55,500 feet of transects, 678 m2 plots, and 243 one-tenth-acre plots. Between 123.9 and f 0,794.4 acres were evaluated for each indicator species. Derived habitat suitability indices were multiplied by corresponding cover-type acreages to determine the number of habitat units for each species. The total habitat units credited to BPA for the Iskuulpa Watershed Project and its seven indicator species is 4,567.8 habitat units. Factors limiting habitat suitability are related to the direct, indirect, and cumulative effects of past livestock grazing, road construction, and timber harvest, which have simplified the structure, composition, and diversity of native plant communities. Alternatives for protecting and improving habitat suitability include exclusion of livestock grazing or implementation of restoration grazing schemes, road de-commissioning, reforestation, large woody debris additions to floodplains, control of competing and unwanted vegetation, reestablishing displaced or reduced native vegetation species

  20. Rainwater Wildlife Area Habitat Evaluation Procedures Report; A Columbia Basin Wildlife Mitigation Project.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Childs, Allen B.

    2004-01-01

    The 8,768 acre Rainwater Wildlife Area was acquired in September 1998 by the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation (CTUIR) through an agreement with Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) to partially offset habitat losses associated with construction of the John Day and McNary hydroelectric facilities on the mainstem Columbia River. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) were used to determine the number of habitat units credited to BPA for acquired lands. Upland and riparian forest, upland and riparian shrub, and grassland cover types are evaluated in this study. Targeted wildlife species include downy woodpecker (Picoides pubescens), black-capped chickadee (Parus atricopillus), blue grouse (Dendragapus obscurus), great blue heron (Ardea herodias), yellow warbler (Dendroica petechia), mink (Mustela vison), and Western meadowlark (Sturnella neglecta). Habitat surveys were conducted in 1998 and 1999 in accordance with published HEP protocols and included 65,300, 594m{sup 2}2 plots, and 112 one-tenth-acre plots. Between 153.3 and 7,187.46 acres were evaluated for each target wildlife mitigation species. Derived habitat suitability indices were multiplied by corresponding cover-type acreages to determine the number of habitat units for each species. The total baseline habitat units credited to BPA for the Rainwater Wildlife Area and its seven target species is 5,185.3 habitat units. Factors limiting habitat suitability are related to the direct, indirect, and cumulative effects of past livestock grazing, road construction, and timber harvest which have simplified the structure, composition, and diversity of native plant communities. Alternatives for protecting and improving habitat suitability include exclusion of livestock grazing, road de-commissioning/obliteration, reforestation and thinning, control of competing and unwanted vegetation (including noxious weeds), reestablishing displaced or reduced native

  1. Unraveling past impacts of climate change and land management on historic peatland development using proxy-based reconstruction, monitoring data and process modeling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heinemeyer, Andreas; Swindles, Graeme T

    2018-05-08

    Peatlands represent globally significant soil carbon stores that have been accumulating for millennia under water-logged conditions. However, deepening water-table depths (WTD) from climate change or human-induced drainage could stimulate decomposition resulting in peatlands turning from carbon sinks to carbon sources. Contemporary WTD ranges of testate amoebae (TA) are commonly used to predict past WTD in peatlands using quantitative transfer function models. Here we present, for the first time, a study comparing TA-based WTD reconstructions to instrumentally monitored WTD and hydrological model predictions using the MILLENNIA peatland model to examine past peatland responses to climate change and land management. Although there was very good agreement between monitored and modeled WTD, TA-reconstructed water table was consistently deeper. Predictions from a larger European TA transfer function data set were wetter, but the overall directional fit to observed WTD was better for a TA transfer function based on data from northern England. We applied a regression-based offset correction to the reconstructed WTD for the validation period (1931-2010). We then predicted WTD using available climate records as MILLENNIA model input and compared the offset-corrected TA reconstruction to MILLENNIA WTD predictions over an extended period (1750-1931) with available climate reconstructions. Although the comparison revealed striking similarities in predicted overall WTD patterns, particularly for a recent drier period (1965-1995), there were clear periods when TA-based WTD predictions underestimated (i.e. drier during 1830-1930) and overestimated (i.e. wetter during 1760-1830) past WTD compared to MILLENNIA model predictions. Importantly, simulated grouse moor management scenarios may explain the drier TA WTD predictions, resulting in considerable model predicted carbon losses and reduced methane emissions, mainly due to drainage. This study demonstrates the value of a site

  2. Multiscale sagebrush rangeland habitat modeling in the Gunnison Basin of Colorado

    Science.gov (United States)

    Homer, Collin G.; Aldridge, Cameron L.; Meyer, Debra K.; Schell, Spencer J.

    2013-01-01

    North American sagebrush-steppe ecosystems have decreased by about 50 percent since European settlement. As a result, sagebrush-steppe dependent species, such as the Gunnison sage-grouse, have experienced drastic range contractions and population declines. Coordinated ecosystem-wide research, integrated with monitoring and management activities, is needed to help maintain existing sagebrush habitats; however, products that accurately model and map sagebrush habitats in detail over the Gunnison Basin in Colorado are still unavailable. The goal of this project is to provide a rigorous large-area sagebrush habitat classification and inventory with statistically validated products and estimates of precision across the Gunnison Basin. This research employs a combination of methods, including (1) modeling sagebrush rangeland as a series of independent objective components that can be combined and customized by any user at multiple spatial scales; (2) collecting ground measured plot data on 2.4-meter QuickBird satellite imagery in the same season the imagery is acquired; (3) modeling of ground measured data on 2.4-meter imagery to maximize subsequent extrapolation; (4) acquiring multiple seasons (spring, summer, and fall) of Landsat Thematic Mapper imagery (30-meter) for optimal modeling; (5) using regression tree classification technology that optimizes data mining of multiple image dates, ratios, and bands with ancillary data to extrapolate ground training data to coarser resolution Landsat Thematic Mapper; and 6) employing accuracy assessment of model predictions to enable users to understand their dependencies. Results include the prediction of four primary components including percent bare ground, percent herbaceous, percent shrub, and percent litter, and four secondary components including percent sagebrush (Artemisia spp.), percent big sagebrush (Artemisia tridentata), percent Wyoming sagebrush (Artemisia tridentata wyomingensis), and shrub height (centimeters

  3. Long-term effects of seeding after wildfire on vegetation in Great Basin shrubland ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knutson, Kevin C.; Pyke, David A.; Wirth, Troy A.; Arkle, Robert S.; Pilliod, David S.; Brooks, Matthew L.; Chambers, Jeanne C.; Grace, James B.

    2014-01-01

    1. Invasive annual grasses alter fire regimes in shrubland ecosystems of the western USA, threatening ecosystem function and fragmenting habitats necessary for shrub-obligate species such as greater sage-grouse. Post-fire stabilization and rehabilitation treatments have been administered to stabilize soils, reduce invasive species spread and restore or establish sustainable ecosystems in which native species are well represented. Long-term effectiveness of these treatments has rarely been evaluated. 2. We studied vegetation at 88 sites where aerial or drill seeding was implemented following fires between 1990 and 2003 in Great Basin (USA) shrublands. We examined sites on loamy soils that burned only once since 1970 to eliminate confounding effects of recurrent fire and to assess soils most conducive to establishment of seeded species. We evaluated whether seeding provided greater cover of perennial seeded species than burned–unseeded and unburned–unseeded sites, while also accounting for environmental variation. 3. Post-fire seeding of native perennial grasses generally did not increase cover relative to burned–unseeded areas. Native perennial grass cover did, however, increase after drill seeding when competitive non-natives were not included in mixes. Seeding non-native perennial grasses and the shrub Bassia prostrata resulted in more vegetative cover in aerial and drill seeding, with non-native perennial grass cover increasing with annual precipitation. Seeding native shrubs, particularly Artemisia tridentata, did not increase shrub cover or density in burned areas. Cover of undesirable, non-native annual grasses was lower in drill seeded relative to unseeded areas, but only at higher elevations. 4. Synthesis and applications. Management objectives are more likely to be met in high-elevation or precipitation locations where establishment of perennial grasses occurred. On lower and drier sites, management objectives are unlikely to be met with seeding alone

  4. Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) Report; Precious Lands Wildlife Management Area, Technical Report 2000-2003.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kozusko, Shana

    2003-12-01

    Engineers and the Washington Department of fish and Wildlife subsequently purchased numerous properties to mitigate for the identified Snake River losses. These projects, however, were not sufficient to mitigate for all the HU's lost. The Northwest Power Planning Council amended the remaining 26,774 HU's into their 1994-1995 Fish and Wildlife Program as being unmitigated (NPPC 2000), which allowed the Nez Perce Tribe to contract with BPA to provide HU's through the Precious Lands Project. The Precious Lands project contains a different composition of cover types than those assessed during the lower Snake loss assessment. For example, no mallard or Canada goose habitat exists on Precious Lands but the area does contain conifer forest, which was not present on the area inundated by dam construction. These cover type differences have resulted in a slightly different suite of species for the current HEP assessment. Target species for Precious Lands are downy woodpecker, yellow warbler, song sparrow, California Quail, mule deer, sharp-tailed grouse (brood rearing), west em meadowlark, beaver, and black-capped chickadee. This list is a reflection of the available cover types and the management objectives of the Nez Perce Tribe. For example, chukar was not used in the present assessment because it is an introduced Eurasian game bird that does not provide an accurate representation of the ecological health of the native grasslands it was supposed to represent. Initial model runs using the chukar confirmed this suspicion so the brood-rearing section of the sharp-tailed grouse model was used instead. Additionally, the beaver model was used in place of the river otter model because the otter model used in the loss assessment was not a published model, was overly simplistic, and did not provide an accurate assessment of riparian condition. The beaver model, however, provides a detailed evaluation of overstory class structure that the NPT felt was a good compliment to the

  5. COMPARATIVE CHARACTERISTICS OF MORPHOMETRIC PARAMETERS OF MONKEY GOBY (NEOGOBIUS FLUVIATILIS PALLAS OF FRESH AND SALINE WATER RESERVOIRS IN UKRAINE

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Onoprienko V.

    2014-04-01

    physiological processes. The result of this effect is the difference in weight, size and body parts. To clarify, as our model species was taken Cottus Sandpiper (Neogobius fluviatilis Pallas. The reason for this was the fact that this species, along with other Ponto- Caspian solonovato - freshwater gobies, the International Union for Conservation of Nature classified as species biology are poorly understood and require further research. This fact that deepened interest of ichthyologists in this group of fish, in this regard appeared in the literature as material for the bulls and in Sandpiper. Based on the above, the purpose of this paper is a comparative morphometric parameters characteristic of individuals of this species of fresh and salt water bodies of Ukraine. All this affects the absolute morphometric parameters, which decrease in the direction from sea to the river. However, it should be noted that in rivers with rich feeding grounds sheer size of some individuals close to the size and species of sea Kakhovskoe reservoir. This situation is observed in the Sandpiper Grouse River. Here are some specimens reach a length (TL 118-148 mm and a weight of 15-36 g, Kakhovskoe Reservoir: 106-150 mm 11-38 g, in the Sea of Azov: 115-174 mm 17-58 g. For relative parameters Sandpiper with these reservoirs are more similar, however, for some of them, there are differences. Among the latter is most clearly distinguished the ratio SL / N. This indicator podovzhenist (prohonystist body. As pointed out by VP Mitrofanov (1977, this indicator shows the hydrodynamic qualities of fish: the larger the index, the more active lifestyle is individual. When compared with individuals with a little water and a large stream, in the latter case, individuals are more elongated. This is confirmed by our material: the ratio SL / L for the smallest species of sea of Azov (4.96, slightly more for Kakhovsky reservoir (5.52 and even more for rivers Grouse, Trubizh, Desna, Ros (respectively 5, 86, 6.22 , 6

  6. COMPARATIVE CHARACTERISTICS OF MORPHOMETRIC PARAMETERS OF MONKEY GOBY (NEOGOBIUS FLUVIATILIS PALLAS OF FRESH AND SALINE WATER RESERVOIRS IN UKRAINE

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. P. Onoprienko

    2014-04-01

    physiological processes. The result of this effect is the difference in weight, size and body parts. To clarify, as our model species was taken Cottus Sandpiper (Neogobius fluviatilis Pallas. The reason for this was the fact that this species, along with other Ponto- Caspian solonovato - freshwater gobies, the International Union for Conservation of Nature classified as species biology are poorly understood and require further research. This fact that deepened interest of ichthyologists in this group of fish, in this regard appeared in the literature as material for the bulls and in Sandpiper. Based on the above, the purpose of this paper is a comparative morphometric parameters characteristic of individuals of this species of fresh and salt water bodies of Ukraine. All this affects the absolute morphometric parameters, which decrease in the direction from sea to the river. However, it should be noted that in rivers with rich feeding grounds sheer size of some individuals close to the size and species of sea Kakhovskoe reservoir. This situation is observed in the Sandpiper Grouse River. Here are some specimens reach a length (TL 118-148 mm and a weight of 15-36 g, Kakhovskoe Reservoir: 106-150 mm 11-38 g, in the Sea of ​​Azov: 115-174 mm 17-58 g. For relative parameters Sandpiper with these reservoirs are more similar, however, for some of them, there are differences. Among the latter is most clearly distinguished the ratio SL / N. This indicator podovzhenist (prohonystist body. As pointed out by VP Mitrofanov (1977, this indicator shows the hydrodynamic qualities of fish: the larger the index, the more active lifestyle is individual. When compared with individuals with a little water and a large stream, in the latter case, individuals are more elongated. This is confirmed by our material: the ratio SL / L for the smallest species of sea of ​​Azov (4.96, slightly more for Kakhovsky reservoir (5.52 and even more for rivers Grouse, Trubizh, Desna, Ros (respectively 5, 86

  7. Joint Applications Pilot of the National Climate Predictions and Projections Platform and the North Central Climate Science Center: Delivering climate projections on regional scales to support adaptation planning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ray, A. J.; Ojima, D. S.; Morisette, J. T.

    2012-12-01

    The DOI North Central Climate Science Center (NC CSC) and the NOAA/NCAR National Climate Predictions and Projections (NCPP) Platform and have initiated a joint pilot study to collaboratively explore the "best available climate information" to support key land management questions and how to provide this information. NCPP's mission is to support state of the art approaches to develop and deliver comprehensive regional climate information and facilitate its use in decision making and adaptation planning. This presentation will describe the evolving joint pilot as a tangible, real-world demonstration of linkages between climate science, ecosystem science and resource management. Our joint pilot is developing a deliberate, ongoing interaction to prototype how NCPP will work with CSCs to develop and deliver needed climate information products, including translational information to support climate data understanding and use. This pilot also will build capacity in the North Central CSC by working with NCPP to use climate information used as input to ecological modeling. We will discuss lessons to date on developing and delivering needed climate information products based on this strategic partnership. Four projects have been funded to collaborate to incorporate climate information as part of an ecological modeling project, which in turn will address key DOI stakeholder priorities in the region: Riparian Corridors: Projecting climate change effects on cottonwood and willow seed dispersal phenology, flood timing, and seedling recruitment in western riparian forests. Sage Grouse & Habitats: Integrating climate and biological data into land management decision models to assess species and habitat vulnerability Grasslands & Forests: Projecting future effects of land management, natural disturbance, and CO2 on woody encroachment in the Northern Great Plains The value of climate information: Supporting management decisions in the Plains and Prairie Potholes LCC. NCCSC's role in

  8. Anticipating and Managing Future Trade-offs and Complementarities between Ecosystem Services

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mark S. Reed

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available This paper shows how, with the aid of computer models developed in close collaboration with decision makers and other stakeholders, it is possible to quantify and map how policy decisions are likely to affect multiple ecosystem services in future. In this way, potential trade-offs and complementarities between different ecosystem services can be identified, so that policies can be designed to avoid the worst trade-offs, and where possible, enhance multiple services. The paper brings together evidence from across the Rural Economy and Land Use Programme's Sustainable Uplands project for the first time, with previously unpublished model outputs relating to runoff, agricultural suitability, biomass, heather cover, age, and utility for Red Grouse (Lagopus scotica, grass cover, and accompanying scenario narratives and video. Two contrasting scenarios, based on policies to extensify or intensify land management up to 2030, were developed through a combination of interviews and discussions during site visits with stakeholders, literature review, conceptual modeling, and process-based computer models, using the Dark Peak of the Peak District National Park in the UK as a case study. Where extensification leads to a significant reduction in managed burning and grazing or land abandonment, changes in vegetation type and structure could compromise a range of species that are important for conservation, while compromising provisioning services, amenity value, and increasing wildfire risk. However, where extensification leads to the restoration of peatlands damaged by former intensive management, there would be an increase in carbon sequestration and storage, with a number of cobenefits, which could counter the loss of habitats and species elsewhere in the landscape. In the second scenario, land use and management was significantly intensified to boost UK self-sufficiency in food. This would benefit certain provisioning services but would have negative

  9. Thermal Water of Utah Topical Report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Goode, Harry D.

    1978-11-01

    Western and central Utah has 16 areas whose wells or springs yield hot water (35 C or higher), warm water (20-34.5 C), and slightly warm water (15.5-19.5 C). These areas and the highest recorded water temperature for each are: Lower Bear River Area, 105 C; Bonneville Salt Flats, 88 C; Cove Fort-Sulphurdale, 77 C; Curlew Valley, 43 C; East Shore Area, 60 C; Escalante Desert, 149 C; Escalante Valley (Roosevelt, 269 C, and Thermo, 85C); Fish Springs, 60.5 C; Grouse Creek Valley, 42 C; Heber Valley (Midway, 45 C); Jordan Valley, 58.5 C; Pavant Valley-Black Rock Desert, 67 C; Sevier Desert ( Abraham-Crater Hot Springs, 82 C); Sevier Valley (Monroe-Red Hill, 76.5 C, and Joseph Hot Spring, 64 C); Utah Valley, 46 C; and Central Virgin River Basin, 42 C. The only hot water in eastern Utah comes from the oil wells of the Ashley Valley Oil Field, which in 1977 yielded 4400 acre-feet of water at 43 C to 55 C. Many other areas yield warm water (20 to 34.5 C) and slightly warm water (15.5 to 19.5 C). With the possible exception of the Roosevelt KGRA, Crater Hot Springs in the Sevier Desert, Escalante Desert, Pavant-Black Rock, Cove Fort-Sulphurdale, and Coyote Spring in Curlew Valley, which may derive their heat from buried igneous bodies, the heat that warms the thermal water is derived from the geothermal gradient. Meteoric water circulates through fractures or permeable rocks deep within the earth, where it is warmed; it then rises by convection or artesian pressure and issues at the surface as springs or is tapped by wells. Most thermal springs thus rise along faults, but some thermal water is trapped in confined aquifers so that it spreads laterally as it mixes with and warms cooler near-surface water. This spreading of thermal waters is evident in Cache Valley, in Jordan Valley, and in southern Utah Valley; likely the spreading occurs in many other artesian basins where it has not yet been recognized. In the East Shore Area thermal water trapped in confined aquifers warms

  10. Seguimiento por espectroscopia infrarroja (FT-IR de la copolimerización de TEOS (tetraetilortosilicato y PDMS (polidimetilsiloxano en presencia de tbt (tetrabutiltitanio

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Téllez, L.

    2004-10-01

    Full Text Available Hybrid materials have been prepared in this work through the reactions of Si and Ti alkoxides (TEOS and TBT, respectively and polydimethil siloxane (PDMS. These reactions have been studied by means of FT-IR spectroscopy during the whole reaction time. The hydrolysis of TEOS molecule has been followed by the 880 cm-1 band, and the self-condensation reactions through the 1180 and 1150 cm-1 bands. Polycondesation reaction between Si-OH groups and PDMS molecules has been followed by the 850 cm-1 band. On the other hand, the hydrolysis reaction of TBT and the self-condensation of Ti-OH groups have been followed by the 1130 and 770-510 cm-1 bands, respectively. Finally the condensation reaction between Si-OH and Ti-OH groups have been studied by the 936 cm-1 band. Results have shown that hydrolysis and condensation reactions are depending on TBT concentration. The formation of Si-O-Si cross-linked structures increases with the TBT concentrations in the reaction. The selfcondensation reaction of Si-OH grups or Ti-OH grous is very reapid forming Si-O-Si and Ti-O-Ti bonds, respectively. However, the Si-O-Ti bonds which are formed during the first moments of reaction are also rapidly broken due to H2O molecules or the reaction medium. The evolution of PDMS linear and cyclic molecules is also studied.

    Se han preparado materiales híbridos por medio de reacciones de hidrólisis y condensación de alcóxidos de Si y Ti (TEOS y TBT, respectivamente y de reacciones de copolimerización de éstos con polidimetilsiloxano (PDMS. Se han estudiado las citadas reacciones mediante espectroscopia FT-IR, desde el mismo comienzo hasta la obtención del material final. La hidrólisis del TEOS así como la autocondensación del os grupos Si-OH generados tanto para formar cadenas entrecruzadas como lineales se han seguido mediante las bandas situadas a 880, 1180 y 1150 cm-1, respectivamente. La policondensación de dichos grupos con PDMS se ha seguido por la banda a

  11. Data resources for range-wide assessment of livestock grazing across the sagebrush biome

    Science.gov (United States)

    Assal, T.J.; Veblen, K.E.; Farinha, M.A.; Aldridge, Cameron L.; Casazza, Michael L.; Pyke, D.A.

    2012-01-01

    The data contained in this series were compiled, modified, and analyzed for the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) report "Range-Wide Assessment of Livestock Grazing Across the Sagebrush Biome." This report can be accessed through the USGS Publications Warehouse (online linkage: http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2011/1263/). The dataset contains spatial and tabular data related to Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Grazing Allotments. We reviewed the BLM national grazing allotment spatial dataset available from the GeoCommunicator National Integrated Land System (NILS) website in 2007 (http://www.geocommunicator.gov). We identified several limitations in those data and learned that some BLM State and/or field offices had updated their spatial data to rectify these limitations, but maintained the data outside of NILS. We contacted appropriate BLM offices (State or field, 25 in all) to obtain the most recent data, assessed the data, established a data development protocol, and compiled data into a topologically enforced dataset throughout the area of interest for this project (that is, the pre-settlement distribution of Greater Sage-Grouse in the Western United States). The final database includes three spatial datasets: Allotments (BLM Grazing Allotments), OUT_Polygons (nonallotment polygons used to ensure topology), and Duplicate_Polygon_Allotments. See Appendix 1 of the aforementioned report for complete methods. The tabular data presented here consists of information synthesized by the Land Health Standard (LHS) analysis (Appendix 2), and data obtained from the BLM Rangeland Administration System (http://www.blm.gov/ras/). In 2008, available LHS data for all allotments in all regions were compiled by BLM in response to a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request made by a private organization. The BLM provided us with a copy of these data. These data provided three major types of information that were of interest: (1) date(s) (if any) of the most recent LHS evaluation for each

  12. Effects of Wind Energy Development on Nesting Ecology of Greater Prairie-Chickens in Fragmented Grasslands

    Science.gov (United States)

    McNew, Lance B; Hunt, Lyla M; Gregory, Andrew J; Wisely, Samantha M; Sandercock, Brett K

    2014-01-01

    Wind energy is targeted to meet 20% of U.S. energy needs by 2030, but new sites for development of renewable energy may overlap with important habitats of declining populations of grassland birds. Greater Prairie-Chickens (Tympanuchus cupido) are an obligate grassland bird species predicted to respond negatively to energy development. We used a modified before–after control–impact design to test for impacts of a wind energy development on the reproductive ecology of prairie-chickens in a 5-year study. We located 59 and 185 nests before and after development, respectively, of a 201 MW wind energy facility in Greater Prairie-Chicken nesting habitat and assessed nest site selection and nest survival relative to proximity to wind energy infrastructure and habitat conditions. Proximity to turbines did not negatively affect nest site selection (β = 0.03, 95% CI = −1.2–1.3) or nest survival (β = −0.3, 95% CI = −0.6–0.1). Instead, nest site selection and survival were strongly related to vegetative cover and other local conditions determined by management for cattle production. Integration of our project results with previous reports of behavioral avoidance of oil and gas facilities by other species of prairie grouse suggests new avenues for research to mitigate impacts of energy development. Efectos del Desarrollo de la Energía Eólica sobre la Ecología de Anidación de Gallinas de la Gran Pradera en Pastizales Fragmentados Resumen Se calcula que la energía eólica aportará el 20% de las necesidades energéticas de los Estados Unidos para el 2030, pero nuevos sitios para el desarrollo de energía renovable pueden traslaparse con hábitats importantes de poblaciones declinantes de aves de pastizal. La gallina de la Gran Pradera (Tympanuchus cupido) es una especie de ave obligada de pastizal que se pronostica responderá negativamente al desarrollo energético. Usamos un diseño ADCI modificado para probar los impactos del desarrollo de la energía e

  13. The birds-consumers of the fruits and disseminators of Phellodendron Rupr. seeds in the south of Russian Far East

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. A. Nechaev

    2016-02-01

    with the excrements outside. In addition, Eurasian Nuthatches and Tits actively distribute the seeds, making stocks under the tree bark and in the semihollows. The passive agents of dissemination are Hazel Grouse – Tetrastes bonasia, Common Pheasant – Phasianus colchicus, Great Spotted Woodpeckers – Dendrocopos major, Oriental Tutle Doves – Streptopelia orientalis, Pallas’s Rose Finches, Hawfinches – Coccothraustes coccothraustes and some others, who can crack hard seed peel by the peckers, but some part of the seed peels retain undamaged in the gastrointestinal tract and is pushed outside. The main role in the cork-tree dissemination belongs to the migrants and wintering birds – woodpeckers, azure-winged magpies, thrushes and waxwings, distributing seeds on the feeding places and transferring them on the different distances from the areas of the plant growing.

  14. Elemental and Isotopic Tomography at Single-Atom-Scale in 4.0 and 2.4 Ga Zircons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valley, J. W.; Reinhard, D. A.; Snoeyenbos, D.; Lawrence, D.; Martin, I.; Kelly, T. F.; Ushikubo, T.; Strickland, A.; Cavosie, A. J.

    2012-12-01

    Atom probe tomography can determine identity (mass/charge ratio) and 3-D position of individual atoms in minerals such as zircon. These data provide unique information for understanding the thermal history and mechanisms of mineral reaction and exchange, including radiation damage. Nine needle-shaped specimens ~100 nm in diameter (at the apex) were sampled from 2 zircons by FIB and analyzed with a local-electrode atom probe (LEAP), CAMECA LEAP 4000X HR. The LEAP uses pulsed-laser heating to field evaporate the tip of a zircon needle and accelerates the ions into a position-sensitive TOF-MS. With due care for complex isobaric interferences (molecules, multiple ionizations) and background correction, it is possible to individually identify up to 10E8 atoms/needle (36% detection efficiency) by mass/charge (MRP ~ 1000@ m/n=16Da) and position (X-Y-Z coordinates on 0.2 nm scale) (Kelly & Larson 2012). The 3-D distribution of Pb and Y differ at atom-scale in the 2 zircons. Zircon #1 (4007 Ma, Jack Hills, W. Australia, Cavosie 2005, Ushikubo et al. 2008, Bouvier et al. 2011) is homogeneous in Pb and Y. In contrast, incompatible elements, including Pb and Y, are concentrated in equant 5-10 nm dia. domains, spaced ~50 nm apart in zircon #2 (2438 Ma, Albion-Raft R-Grouse Ck core complex, Utah, Strickland et al. 2011). U is homogeneously distributed in both zircons. The analyzed domains suffered 4-8 x 10E15 α-decay events/mg due to U and Th decay and yet both zircons yield >97% concordant U-Pb ages by SIMS, suggesting annealing of radiation damage during the life of the zircons. The 207-Pb/206-Pb ratios for these nm-scale domains, as measured by LEAP, average 0.17 for the 2.4 Ga Zrc2 (3 needles) and 0.43 for the 4.0 Ga Zrc1 (5 needles). These ratios are less precise (±40% 2σ) due to ultra-small sample size, but are in excellent agreement with values measured by SIMS, 0.1684 and 0.4269, respectively. Thus Pb in both zircons is radiogenic. The Pb-Y-rich domains and lack of

  15. U.S. Geological Survey Science for the Wyoming Landscape Conservation Initiative - 2013 Annual Report

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bowen, Zachary H.; Aldridge, Cameron L.; Anderson, Patrick J.; Assal, Timothy J.; Bern, Carleton R.; Biewick, Laura R; Boughton, Gregory K.; Chalfoun, Anna D.; Chong, Geneva W.; Dematatis, Marie K.; Fedy, Bradley C.; Garman, Steven L.; Germaine, Stephen S.; Hethcoat, Matthew G.; Homer, Collin G.; Huber, Christopher; Kauffman, Matthew J.; Latysh, Natalie; Manier, Daniel; Melcher, Cynthia P.; Miller, Kirk A.; Potter, Christopher J.; Schell, Spencer; Sweat, Michael J.; Walters, Annika W.; Wilson, Anna B.

    2014-01-01

    the mountain shrub-mapping project in the Big Piney-La Barge mule deer winter range. Finally, a 3-year survey of pygmy rabbits in four major gas-field areas was completed and used to validate the pygmy rabbit habitat model/map developed earlier in the project. Important products that became available for use by WLCI partners included publication of USGS Data Series report (http://pubs.usgs.gov/ds/800/pdf/ds800.pdf) that compiles our WLCI land cover and land use data, which depict current and historical patterns of sage-grouse habitat in relation to energy development and will be used to pose “what-if” scenarios to evaluate possible outcomes of alternative land-use strategies and practices on habitat and wildlife. Another important FY2013 product was a journal article (http://aapgbull.geoscienceworld.org/content/97/6/899.full) that describes the Mowry Shale and Frontier formation, which harbors coalbed methane and shale gas resources in Wyoming, Colorado, and Utah, for use in future scenario-building work. We also produced maps and databases that depict the structure and condition of aspen stands in the Little Mountain Ecosystem, and then presented this information to the Bureau of Land Management, Wyoming Game and Fish Department, and other interested entities for supporting aspen-management objectives.

  16. Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) Report : Rainwater Wildlife Area, 1998-2001 Technical Report.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Childs, Allen

    2004-01-01

    The 8,768 acre Rainwater Wildlife Area was acquired in September 1998 by the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation (CTUIR) through an agreement with Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) to partially offset habitat losses associated with construction of the John Day and McNary hydroelectric facilities on the mainstem Columbia River. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) were used to determine the number of habitat units credited to BPA for acquired lands. Upland and riparian forest, upland and riparian shrub, and grassland rover types are evaluated in this study. Targeted wildlife species include downy woodpecker (Picoides pubescens), black-capped chickadee (Parus atricopillus), blue grouse (Dendragapus obscurus), great blue heron (Ardea herodias), yellow warbler (Dendroica petechia), mink (Mustela vison), and Western meadowlark (Sturnella neglects). Habitat surveys were conducted in 1998 and 1999 in accordance with published HEP protocols and included 65,300, 594m{sup 2} plots, and 112 one-tenth-acre plots. Between 153.3 and 7,187.46 acres were evaluated for each target wildlife mitigation species. Derived habitat suitability indices were multiplied by corresponding cover-type acreages to determine the number of habitat units for each species. The total baseline habitat units credited to BPA for the Rainwater Wildlife Area and its seven target species is 5,185.3 habitat units. Factors limiting habitat suitability are related to the direct, indirect, and cumulative effects of past livestock grazing, road construction, and timber harvest which have simplified the structure, composition, and diversity of native plant communities. Alternatives for protecting and improving habitat suitability include exclusion of livestock grazing, road de-commissioning/obliteration, reforestation and thinning, control of competing and unwanted vegetation (including noxious weeds), reestablishing displaced or reduced native

  17. Controlled fires, politics, and the media

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stoof, Cathelijne; Kettridge, Nicholas; Gray, Alan; Ascoli, Davide; Fernandes, Paulo; Marrs, Rob; Allen, Katherine; Doerr, Stephan; Clay, Gareth; McMorrow, Julia; Vandvik, Vidgis; Davies, Matt

    2017-04-01

    A golden rule in science communication is to be in charge - particularly when communicating sensitive topics. When our recent review on the use of fire and UK peatlands (Davies et al. 2016a) was accidentally released into the public domain prior to publication, we were certainly not in charge. The international fire ecology literature recognises that there are many potential benefits from the controlled use of fire, yet this tool is frequently viewed negatively in the UK. This may be at least partly due to its association with (creating habitat for) grouse hunting. In Davies et al. (2016a) we highlighted this controversy. We countered recent publications that portrayed controlled fires as having predominantly negative impacts on the environment (including water quality), often based on studies of potentially severe wildfires. We furthermore explored both the benefits and negative consequence of controlled burns. As fire is a highly political and emotional topic in the UK, we planned a press release upon publication of our paper to take the lead in the communication. The accidental release however prevented us from doing so, and came about inadvertently through one of us following the new rules of publication for University staff within the UK, designed to satisfy the Research Excellence Framework guidelines, i.e. that the accepted version of all papers should be entered immediately on acceptance into institutional repositories. To avoid similar issues, we suggest that all authors of commentary papers, especially if controversial, should endure that embargo terms are enforced in repository depositions strictly to prevent this happening. Ironically, our paper that called for informed, unbiased debate was used out of context by groups aligned with different wider environmental, social and political agendas. Our scientific credibility was consequently questioned in a blog by a prominent Guardian journalist, who disagreed with us on the focus of our review (fire effects

  18. Avian post-construction studies and EIA for planned extension of the Hitra wind-power plant; EIA = environmental impact assessment; Ornitologisk etterundersoekelse og konsekvensutredning i tilknytning til planer for utvidelse av Hitra vindkraftverk

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bevanger, K.; Dahl, E.L.; Gjershaug, J.O.; Halley, D.J.; Hanssen, F.O.; Nygaard, T.; Pearson, M.; Pedersen, H.C.; Reitan, O.

    2010-03-15

    are acceptable/unacceptable with regard to short- and long-term population development and survival for the eagle owl. Apart from this, construction of the Hitra 2 wind power plant is not considered to be unacceptable for the eagle owl, however, it cannot be ruled out that eagle owls will be killed by colliding with the power lines and/or turbines that will be constructed. The final routing plans for the power line seems to generate moderate conflicts with respect to bird collisions; however a prerequisite is that the line follows depressions in the terrain lowering the wires to a height below the treetops in forested areas. This is important with regard to collision hazard, as the tree canopy frequently determines the lower limit for bird flight height. One of the final plan drafts indicates a routing of the power line high up in the terrain, making it particularly exposed in the area from the southernmost turbines and transformer towards the central part of the power plant. Here the collision risk for grouse species as well as raptors and other species will be high. The alternative routing lower into the valley should be preferred. Areas where the terrain topography, together with solar radiation and prevailing wind directions, generate upward air currents (ridge-wind) are identified. Steep slopes towards the south are easily warmed by the sun and create potential areas for ridge wind/thermals. These are frequently used by white-tailed eagles and other raptors to gain height. Locating wind turbines, power lines or other man-made air obstacles in such areas, where frequent hang-wind/thermal generation takes place, may create an increased risk for bird collisions or injuries. Based on SpacEyes viewer, the user will be able to navigate within he terrain model and view the landscape and the turbine locations from a 'birds perspective' (own DVD attached). The final draft plan for the turbine locations indicates planned locations in areas where ridge winds are

  19. Coeur d'Alene Tribe Fish and Wildlife Program Habitat Protection Plan; Implementation of Fisheries Enhancement Opportunities on the Coeur d'Alene Reservation, 1997-2002 Technical Report.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Vitale, Angelo; Roberts, Frank; Peters, Ronald

    2002-06-01

    Throughout the last century, the cumulative effects of anthropogenic disturbances have caused drastic watershed level landscape changes throughout the Reservation and surrounding areas (Coeur d'Alene Tribe 1998). Changes include stream channelization, wetland draining, forest and palouse prairie conversion for agricultural use, high road density, elimination of old growth timber stands, and denuding riparian communities. The significance of these changes is manifested in the degradation of habitats supporting native flora and fauna. Consequently, populations of native fish, wildlife, and plants, which the Tribe relies on as subsistence resources, have declined or in some instances been extirpated (Apperson et al. 1988; Coeur d'Alene Tribe 1998; Lillengreen et al. 1996; Lillengreen et al. 1993; Gerry Green Coeur d'Alene Tribe wildlife Biologist, personal communication 2002). For example, bull trout (Salvelinus confluentus) are not present at detectable levels in Reservation tributaries, westslope cutthroat trout (Oncorhynchus clarki lewisi) are not present in numbers commensurate with maintaining harvestable fisheries (Lillengreen et al. 1993, 1996), and the Sharp-tailed grouse (Tympanuchus phasianellus) are not present at detectable levels on the Reservation (Gerry Green, Coeur d'Alene Tribe wildlife biologist, personal communication). The Coeur d'Alene Tribe added Fisheries and Wildlife Programs to their Natural Resources Department to address these losses and protect important cultural, and subsistence resources for future generations. The Tribal Council adopted by Resolution 89(94), the following mission statement for the Fisheries Program: 'restore, protect, expand and re-establish fish populations to sustainable levels to provide harvest opportunities'. This mission statement, focused on fisheries restoration and rehabilitation, is a response to native fish population declines throughout the Tribe's aboriginal territory

  20. Water activities in Laxemar-Simpevarp. Organic field inventory, nature values classification and description of production land

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hamren, Ulrika; Collinder, Per

    2010-10-01

    investigation area is affected by forestry and is judged not to be sensitive to groundwater-t able drawdown. Deciduous habitats in the southeastern parts contain many formerly open pastures, and these are neither judged to be sensitive. Slopes and low-lying terrain contain small parts with moist deciduous habitats and valuable deciduous forest that may be groundwater dependent. The investigation area does not contain any red-listed species that are judged to be explicitly dependent on moist or wet conditions. Some species (such as natterer's bat and lesser spotted woodpecker) are favoured by a mosaic of different habitats, including access to moist nature types. The investigation area contains a number of species that are protected by Swedish regulation (Species Protection Ordinance) and that are dependent on moist habitats, including moor frog, common toad, smooth newt and grass snake. Several bat species use the area to search for food, where the combination of open farmlands, lake- and stream shores, wetlands and areas with ancient deciduous trees provides a valuable natural mix of habitats. Occurring bird species listed in the EU Birds Directive, and which are favoured by moist conditions include crane, black grouse and red-breasted flycatcher. The forestry areas of the investigation area are representative for Eastern Sweden and the region in terms of tree species, soil moisture classes and forest yield (timber-production capacity). Agricultural areas primarily occur in cultivated valleys and are dominated by hay production

  1. Optimal design and routing of power lines; ecological, technical and economic perspectives (OPTIPOL)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bevanger, K.; Bartzke, G.; Broeseth, H.; Gjershaug, J.O.; Hanssen, F.; Jacobsen, K.-O.; Kvaloey, P.; May, R.; Meaas, R.; Nygaard, T.; Refsnaes, S.; Stokke, S.; Vang, R.

    2010-12-15

    The OPTIPOL project - 'Optimal design and routing of power lines; ecological, technical and economic perspectives' - has been active for two years, although the main operational phase was delayed until autumn 2009. The overall OPTIPOL objective is to develop knowledge and tools to improve the decision on environmental friendly power-line routing. To achieve this goal the work is subdivided into 9 focal areas; Develop a 'least-cost path' GIS-based application for an environmental friendly routing of power lines based on ecological, financial and technological criteria; Assess habitat use of power-line Rights-of-Way (ROW) by different wildlife species, consider actions of improving power-line ROW as wildlife habitats, and evaluate possible positive and negative effects on wildlife of power-line ROWs. More specific we will examine how power-line ROW may offer suitable feeding grounds for moose and see if the species habitat selection is influenced by power line ROW; Assess population impact of bird mortality due to power-line collisions, relative to other human related mortality factors (primarily hunting) in gallinaceous birds (with capercaillie and black grouse as model species); Identify ecological high-risk factors for bird collisions, i.e. site-specific factors connected to topographic characteristics, including vegetation structure, season, weather and light conditions; Establish a national infrastructure for management of dead bird data (including birds re-corded as collision and electrocution victims) by developing an online web application enabling the general public to contribute with data on recorded dead birds via Internet; Review available literature to assess 1) the possibilities for increased collision hazard to birds by making power-line structures less visible for humans given the present knowledge on bird vision, and 2) technical properties and constraints of camouflaging techniques on conductors and earth wires; Review available

  2. Environmental Impacts of Wind Power Development on the Population Biology of Greater Prairie-Chickens

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sandercock, Brett K. [Kansas State University

    2013-05-22

    abandoned lek sites were located <5 km from turbines. Probability of lek persistence was significantly related to habitat and number of males. Leks had a higher probability of persistence in grasslands than agricultural fields, and increased from ~0.2 for leks of 5 males, to >0.9 for leks of 10 or more males. Large leks in grasslands should be a higher priority for conservation. Overall, wind power development had a weak effect on the annual probability of lek persistence. 3. We used molecular methods to investigate the mating behavior of prairie chickens. The prevailing view for lek-mating grouse is that females mate once to fertilize the clutch and that conspecific nest parasitism is rare. We found evidence that females mate multiple times to fertilize the clutch (8-18% of broods, 4-38% of chicks) and will parasitize nests of other females during egg-laying (~17% of nests). Variable rates of parentage were highest in the fragmented landscapes at the Smoky Hills field site, and were lower at the Flint Hills field site. Comparisons of the pre- and postconstruction periods showed that wind energy development did not affect the mating behaviors of prairie chickens. 4. We examined use of breeding habitats by radio-marked females and conducted separate analyses for nest site selection, and movements of females not attending nests or broods. The landscape was a mix of native prairie and agricultural habitats, and nest site selection was not random because females preferred to nest in grasslands. Nests tended to be closer to turbines during the postconstruction period and there was no evidence of behavioral avoidance of turbines by females during nest site selection. Movements of females not attending nests or broods showed that females crossed the site of the wind power development at higher rates during the preconstruction period (20%) than the postconstruction period (11%), and that movements away from turbines were more frequent during the postconstruction period. Thus, wind