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THE KENTUCKY SPELEOLOGICAL SURVEY "To preserve cave and karst data for the Commonwealth of Kentucky"

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Presentation on theme: "THE KENTUCKY SPELEOLOGICAL SURVEY "To preserve cave and karst data for the Commonwealth of Kentucky""— Presentation transcript:

1 THE KENTUCKY SPELEOLOGICAL SURVEY "To preserve cave and karst data for the Commonwealth of Kentucky"

2 Why a Speleological Survey for Kentucky? The rate of urban and industrial development is accelerating in the karst areas of Kentucky. Caves, and other karst resources, will not be spared unless planners are made aware of their existence. As the earliest members of the caving community pass away, there is the potential for loss of a large volume of cave survey data. Summary or data analysis studies cannot be developed without an accurate data base.

3 Karst in Kentucky: Fifty-five percent of the state has potential for karst Areas shown in dark blue have high potential for karst Areas shown in light blue have moderate potential for karst Areas shown in background color have limited potential for karst

4 Jarvie Roarke’s Cave, Carter County

5 Kentucky Cave Shrimp Photograph by John MacGregor Rare and Endangered Species

6 The purposes of KSS are: 1.To gather and archive cave and karst data of the Commonwealth of Kentucky to further the study of cave and karst resources for conservation, research, and scientific exploration. 2.To provide a permanent, non-profit, non-sectarian, cooperative organization that works to establish and nurture a professional atmosphere among individuals and organizations that support the foregoing purposes.

7 When was KSS formed? The Kentucky Speleological Survey was incorporated in December 2000 as a non- profit corporation in the Commonwealth of Kentucky. When compared to other cave surveys, the KSS is a very young organization. It has a lot of work ahead of it!

8 Just who do these cavers think they are!?! They are members of NSS Grottos and other recognized caving groups and are long time cavers. KSS members represent just about every caving group in Kentucky They are genuinely concerned about preserving the maps and data Many, many hours of time have gone into setting up the KSS. Time the founders would rather have spent caving!!!! The time has been used to develop a system of data management that MOST cave data holders can agree with - NOT AN EASY TASK!

9 KSS Examined the Organization of Many Other Cave Surveys Missouri Tennessee Illinois Indiana West Virginia Texas And others

10 KSS Memberships Organizational Member Groups that are directly involved in the acquisition, and research of karst data in the state of Kentucky. Such groups include NSS grottos, surrounding state cave surveys, and environmental organizations. Annual dues are $50 Individual Member Individuals wishing to join KSS fill out an application. Part of this application is an agreement to cooperate with the goals of KSS, a promise not to divulge data held by the KSS, and an acknowledgement that membership does not grant specific rights to information. Annual dues are $5

11 Board of Directors The members of the Board of Directors are appointed or elected by the organizations they represent Two at-large Board members are elected from the general membership by the individual members The Board of Directors elects the Executive Committee and the President appoints members of the standing committees

12 KSS Organizational Structure

13 Current KSS Member Organizations Blue Grass Grotto Central Ohio Grotto Wittenberg University Speleological Society Cave Research Foundation Kentucky Geological Survey Carter Underground Speleological Society ESSO Grotto Louisville Grotto Dayton Underground Grotto Pinckney Grotto Central Kentucky Karst Coalition Greater Cincinnati Grotto Pine Mountain Grotto and others

14 Kentucky Geological Survey, University of Kentucky KGS is an important KSS Partner  KSS signed a Memorandum of Understanding with KGS which states – 1.KGS will provide storage space 2.KSS will control usage of the data 3.KGS will assign to KSS the KGS cave map archive 4.KSS will respond to cave related inquiries received by KGS

15 Affiliations NSS, CRF, ACCA, SCCI KSS is not an Internal Organization of the NSS. It is affiliated, however, with several organizations whose normal activities compliment the purposes of KSS. There is no written agreement with these organizations.

16 The KSS Facilities! Hey, that’s expensive office space!

17 What Does the Kentucky Speleological Survey Do? Management Tasks: Policy decisions Finance decisions Decisions on collaborative projects Public Relations with: Cavers Landowners Industry Government Cave Map and Data Archive: Cave map cataloguing Cave location database Survey Data, digital and hardcopy Miscellaneous: Sinkhole Topographic Map Digital photographs online

18 What do Individual Members Get? You get to help decide the policies of the KSS and propose changes you think should be made You get a newsletter (we need a permanent editor!) that provides basic information about KSS projects You are automatically recognized as being a caver who contributes to the science of speleology You don’t get to “browse” the files or have automatic approval of requests, but you do get quicker review of your request

19 KSS has Been Criticized for being too Restrictive with Information! IF KSS were to give cave locations to anybody who asked, would you trust KSS with your data? It was the consensus of the founding Board of Directors that more data will ultimately be archived and protected if cavers trust that access will be conservatively managed.

20 KSS has been Criticized for Being too Liberal with Information! If KSS did not let anyone have cave data what would be the purpose of collecting the data? KSS recognizes that for conservation reasons some data are so highly sensitive we agree the person who submits the data has the final say on who uses it.

21 Why doesn't KSS give out locations for recreational caving? What KSS calls RECREATIONAL CAVING, other cavers call “speleobopping.” KSS refers RECREATIONAL CAVERS to the GROTTOS, where they can get training and go on trips If you’re surveying a cave, or ridge running in an area to start a project, or otherwise recording data, it would be worth your time to contact us. Triple-S Coral Martin Ridge

22 SUBMITTING DATA TO KSS IS NOT A ONE WAY TRIP INTO A SWALLOW HOLE! Short Creek Karst Window, Pulaski County Photograph by J.C. Currens, April, 2001

23 Organizations and Individuals Who have Received Data Dr. David Culver (Biological Study) Dr. Bill Pearson (Environmental Impact Statement) HMB Professional Engineers, Inc. Dr. Nick Crawford (Environmental Assessment) There are no cavers listed because to date no cavers working on a project have made a data request!

24 OK, How do Cavers get Information? 1.Fill out a form available at 2.We need your contact information and your affiliations. 3.Tell us what you want. For example, entrance locations in a specific valley, a specific cave map, copies of original survey notes, etc 4.Tell us what is your intended use of the data (for example a cave mapping project) 5.Talk to us about your request. We can suggest adjustments that improve your chances of it being approved 6.Be patient – KSS is a volunteer organization! There is no charge to individuals, except photocopying

25 How Do Cavers Submit Data? 1.Fill out a form available at 2.We need your contact information and your affiliations. 3.Tell us what data you want to submit. For example, entrance locations on a specific quadrangle; a copy of a cave map; copies of the original survey notes, etc. 4.Tell us what level of access you want to allow –Non-Sensitive (open access) –Sensitive access –KSS committee approval only –Proprietary – by submitters’ approval only 5.Be patient – KSS is a volunteer organization

26 MAJOR DATA CONTRIBUTORS TO KSS Bill Andrews Roger Sperka/John Thrailkill DASS Center for Cave and Karst Studies Dr. Nick Crawford David Schang Kentucky Geological Survey Bill Walden Western Kentucky Speleological Survey Lou Simpson Lee Florea Jim Currens Jon Jasper Keith Ortiz Don Coons

27 So Far, So Good - What’s Next? KSS has set a goal to keep the caving community better informed of its purpose and policies KSS wants to build a positive reputation with both data applicants and potential contributors KSS plans to expand the collection by actively recruiting contributors KSS will continue the never ending task of cataloguing the collection and building a computerized “card-catalogue” or database

28 How Important Are YOUR Maps? Cavers should ask themselves the following question. “When I die, will anyone care about all of the hard surveying trips I made and long hours drafting cave maps, or will my maps end up in the garbage?”

29 SECRECY is no longer the best option!


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