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Columbia River Wildlife Mitigation Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) Prepared By Paul R Ashley-CBFWA Regional HEP Team February 2010.

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Presentation on theme: "Columbia River Wildlife Mitigation Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) Prepared By Paul R Ashley-CBFWA Regional HEP Team February 2010."— Presentation transcript:

1 Columbia River Wildlife Mitigation Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) Prepared By Paul R Ashley-CBFWA Regional HEP Team February 2010

2 Much Appreciation to Peter Paquet, Richard Stiehl, and John Andrews For Their Contributions to This Presentation

3 Columbia Basin Wildlife Mitigation Genesis and Mitigation Process HEP Overview Case Study Example (“how HEP should be applied”) Annualization and Compensation Options –In kind, Equal, Relative HEP/Columbia River W/L Mitigation Comparison Regional HEP Team

4 Genesis The Northwest Power Act wildlife “ The Council shall develop and adopt a program to protect, mitigate, and enhance fish and wildlife … while assuring the Pacific Northwest an adequate, efficient, economical, and reliable power supply.” Section 4(h)(5) wildlife to the extent affected “The BPA shall fund to protect, mitigate, and enhance fish and wildlife to the extent affected by the development and operation of the FCRPS... in a manner consistent with the Council’s Columbia Basin Fish and Wildlife Program.” Section 4(h)(10)(A) wildlife habitat “ The Administrator shall … exercise such responsibilities to adequately protect, mitigate, and enhance fish and wildlife including related spawning grounds and habitat.” Section 4(h)(11)(A)(i)

5 Mitigation Process: Avoid impacts Minimize impacts Repair impacts & restore the affected environment on-site Compensate for unavoidable impacts by replacing or providing substitute resources or environments. Mitigation Process

6 HEP Habitat Evaluation Procedures OVERVIEW

7 ACCOUNTING HEP is an accounting tool HEP was developed to answer one question…..How Much Will It Cost If We Build It?

8 WHY HEP? Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) Methodology is habitat based and considers habitat quality and quantity. –a scientific method for impact and compensation analysis –developed by the USFWS in the 1970’s –used world-wide –upheld in court

9 HEP Assumptions/Tenets A linear relationship exists between habitat quality and carrying capacity (population) Habitat quality can be measured and expressed as a “habitat suitability index” Habitat “losses” and “gains” can be expressed as habitat units (HUs) Compensation site baseline HUs are not credited HEP plans/applications include both Project Areas (PA) and Management Plans (MP) or “compensation areas” HEP CAN BE MODIFIED AS LONG AS EVERYONE AGREES!!!!

10 Population or other performance measure 0.0 Habitat Suitability Index 1.0 high low Linear Relationship

11 A Similar Concept: Cattle Forage Carrying Capacity Low forage Carrying capacity 10 acres High forage Carrying capacity 10 acres (Low Quality)(High Quality)

12 Index = Value of interest Standard of comparison In HEP: HSI = Habitat condition on the study site Optimum habitat condition In math: 50 = Bird species seen on the best birding day 30 = Bird species seen on this birding trip 50 = Bird species seen on the best birding day INDEX OF BIRDING = 0.60 Index = Value of interest Standard of comparison 100% = optimum hydrophytic shrub c.c. for YEWA 40% = hydrophytic shrub c.c. on study area 100% = optimum hydrophytic shrub c.c. for YEWA 0.4 = HSI for YEWA HSI = Habitat condition on the study site Optimum habitat condition “HQ Expressed as Habitat Suitability Index”

13 Habitat Suitability

14 Habitat Suitability Index Scale No Suitable Habitat Medium Quality Habitat High Quality Habitat Zero Carrying Capacity Optimal Carrying Capacity

15 The Currency of HEP is the Habitat Unit or HU Quantity X Quality = HU AREA HSI Habitat Suitability Index – ranges from zero to one (0-1.0) 50 Acres X 0.50 HSI = 25 HUs

16 20 Baseline HUs 0 HU credit for existing value No Net Gain to Wildlife 60 HUs after enhancements 60 HUs – 20 HUs = 40 HUs Net Gain to Wildlife = 40 HUs: Compensation Achieved HEP Crediting Basics Project Area 40 HU Loss

17 HEP Components Species Models - mathematical formulas generate Habitat Suitability Index (HSI) HEP Team -selects models and methods Field Sampling - measure physical habitat characteristics Data Compilation - generate Habitat Units (HUs ) Report Findings

18 HEP PHASES Pre-field Activities Field Activities Data Compilation and Reporting Pre-field Activities

19 Pre-field Activities (Project Scoping) Form an assessment (HEP) team Define study objectives Delineate study boundaries Assemble baseline data Delineate cover types Select evaluation species/HSI models Select inventory techniques Select a sampling design

20 Species Selection 4 Study objectives are established. 4 Resource categories have been determined. 4 Study area has been delineated. 4 Cover types have been defined. Species can be selected to represent: 8 Important species. 8 Important resource categories. 8 Important habitats. 8 Important cover types. Species are selected after:

21 An evaluation species may be: A single species u Channel catfish u Nine-banded armadillo u Least Tern A life stage or life requisite of a species u Rainbow trout fry u Eastern Cottontail winter cover u Blue-winged teal brood pond A group of taxonomically related species u Black basses (Spotted, Sm.mouth & Lg.mouth) u Chipmunks (Eastern, and Least) u Chickadees (Black-capped & Carolina ) A group of species using similar resources u Coolwater reservoir fish u Cavity users u Forest interior songbirds A fish or wildlife community

22 Five Considerations in evaluation species selection 1. Evaluation species MUST relate to the fish & wildlife objectives. 2. The number of evaluation species depends on objectives, project complexity, and constraints. 3. The process of evaluation species selection must be well documented. 4. The way a species responds to the project should not be a reason for selection (i.e., many or few HUs). 5. The Phylum of a species should not be a consideration in the selection.

23 HEP PHASES (cont.) Pre-field Activities Field Activities Data Compilation and Reporting

24 Field Activities  Collect Habitat Data  Percent shrub cover  Basal area  Tree height  Photo documentation  and more…… For example………

25 HSI models define habitat variables….

26 Habitat Needs : Shrubby areas, especially near water with willows and alders. Yellow Warbler Habitat Characteristics that are measured : Shrub height Shrub canopy cover % cvr riparian shrub species

27 No Suitable Yellow Warbler Riparian Habitat (HSI = 0) No riparian shrubs/trees

28 Low Quality Yellow Warbler Riparian Habitat (HSI = 0.2) Some riparian shrubs

29 High Quality Yellow Warbler Riparian Habitat (HSI = 0.8) Average shrub height =/> 6.6 feet Shrub canopy cover near 60-80% Multiple riparian shrub species

30 HEP PHASES (cont.) Pre-field Activities Field Activities Data Compilation and HU Reporting

31 Habitat Suitability

32 Dam Location KeyHabitat TypeEvaluation Species Pre-Dam HUs Mixed Upland ForestBC Chickadee2700 HUs Riparian Shrub/ForestYellow warbler 240 HUs Riverine/Open WaterLesser Scaup 30 HUs Totals2970 HUs Post-Dam HUs 42 HUs 4 HUs 275 HUs 321 HUs Determine NET Impacts Net Change HUs -236 HUs +275 HUs HUs

33 Average Annual Habitat Units AAHUs “Futures Analysis”

34 TY0TY10TY20TY35TY40TY50TY1 Determine Target Years & HUs for the species Calculate habitat units for each period Sum the habitat units over the period of analysis Divide to determine the Average Annual Habitat Units (AAHU) Habitat Units AAHUs

35 A Futures Analysis is conducted on both the project area and compensation site

36 Without project conditions HUs for species A Time TY0 TY1 TY5 TY10 TY20 TY30 TY40 TY50 PROJECT LOSS With project conditions

37 HUs for species A Time TY0 TY1 TY5 TY10 TY20 TY30 TY40 TY50 MANAGEMENT GAIN Without management With management

38 HU Period of analysis Compensation area gains due to management Project area losses due to project Continued management gains Continued project losses NET EFFECTS of “project life”

39 COMPENSATION GOALS 1. In Kind 2. Equal 3. Relative

40 Goal 1: In Kind compensation is intended to replace AAHU losses with equal AAHU gains for that same species….no trade-off….only losses are considered.

41 Goal 2: Equal Replacement goal is to offset HU losses through a gain of an equal number of HUs. A gain of 1 HU for any target species can be used to offset the loss of 1 HU for any evaluation species. The list of target species may or may not be identical to the list of impacted species. Can apply an average HSI in a single cover type.

42 Habitat TypeEvaluation Species Without Annualization Mixed Upland ForestBC Chickadee HUs Riparian Shrub/ForestYellow warbler HUs Riverine/Open WaterLesser Scaup 0 HUs Totals HUs With Annualization HUs -136 HUs 0 HUs HUs In Kind Equal Habitat TypeEvaluation Species Without Annualization Mixed Upland ForestBC Chickadee HUs Riparian Shrub/ForestYellow warbler HUs Riverine/Open WaterLesser Scaup +275HUs Totals HUs With Annualization HUs -136 HUs +208 HUs HUs

43 Goal 3: Relative Replacement is used when 1 HU for a target species is used to offset the loss of 1 HU for an evaluation species at a differential rate depending on the species involved.

44 RVI Example If the RVI values for white-tailed deer and ruffed grouse are 1.0 and 0.5 respectively, one white-tailed deer HU can be used to offset two ruffed grouse HUs, or two RUGR HUs could be traded for one WTDE HU.

45 RVI CONSIDERATIONS After modifying HUs with an RVI, HUs no longer relate to habitat potential (carrying capacity) because they include value judgments. RVIs should be used to trade less important habitat HUs for critical habitat HUs….never from the “top - down.”

46 RVIs (trade-off decisions) ……. Based on resource management goals, administrative policy, or both. Weighting values are determined by a user defined set of socioeconomic and ecological criteria. Trade-off analysis does not imply a desirable way of dealing with HUs..only a method to document changes that will result in gains and losses of different wildlife resources.

47 A RELATIVE VALUE INDEX IS…. A Compromise A Framework for making value comparisons between species or cover types A Record and Documentation of your decision process A Subjective Value Judgment to compare HU changes for different evaluation species or cover types.

48 HEP Methods Summary Formed an assessment (HEP) team Defined HEP study objectives Delineated study boundaries and cover types Determined baseline and enhancement HUs Collected and analyzed habitat variable data Selected evaluation species/HSI models Selected inventory techniques and sampling protocols Selected type of compensation Document and report findings

49

50 HEP Versus Columbia River Wildlife Mitigation Program Inconsistencies

51 1. Did not annualize HU losses or gains as outlined in HEP protocols 2. Net HU losses/gains were either not reported and/or were inconsistent between States/Regions 3. HU credit was awarded for compensation site baseline HUs Primary Inconsistencies

52 4. Compensation strategies not clearly defined and/or followed leading to a mix of “Equal” and “In-Kind” compensation resulting in “paradigm” conflicts Primary Inconsistencies (cont.) 5. “Follow-up” HEP surveys/HUs appear to be unique to our situation 6. Time between impacts and compensation

53 Regional HEP Team (RHT) Regional HEP Team Mission Statement: “To conduct HEP analyses in the most consistent, objective, impartial, and biologically sound manner possible.” The Regional HEP Team conducts HEP analyses throughout the Region and provides HEP training to wildlife managers bringing consistency to the HU accounting process.

54 The RHT not only conducts HEP analyses, but also actively consults with Wildlife Managers and BPA COTR staff to resolve HEP related issues e. g., HU “stacking” in out of kind cover types…. The RHT is committed to collecting robust habitat variable data using consistent and proven techniques and sampling protocols.

55 Habitat Unit Stacking refers to the number of HEP species models used to evaluate a given cover type For Example….

56 “Out of Kind” Loss/Comp. Site Matrix Hames Parcel/Deep Canyon Dam 2009 HEP Comparison Matrix Deep Canyon Dam Loss Assessment Cover Types and Number of Species Open waterHerbaceous Wetland Scrub Shrub Wetland Forested Wetland Wet Meadow Hames Parcel Paired Cover Types and Number of Species Open waterHerbaceous Wetland Forested Wetland ShrubsteppeConifer Forest 35 5 ?? Bald eagle breeding xxx Bald eagle wintering xxx Black-capped chickadee x Canada Goosexxx x Mallardxxxxx Muskratxx Yellow Warbler x White-tailed deer x x Mule deer Number of Species

57 Genesis and Mitigation Process HEP Overview Case Study Example (“how HEP should be applied”) Annualization and Compensation Options –In kind, Equal, Relative HEP/Columbia River W/L Mitigation Comparison Regional HEP Team In Summary……

58 Thank You Questions?


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