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Golden Gate National Recreation Area DRAFT No Action Alternative for Dog Management EIS May 2006 Definition of “No Action” From National Park Service Director’s.

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Presentation on theme: "Golden Gate National Recreation Area DRAFT No Action Alternative for Dog Management EIS May 2006 Definition of “No Action” From National Park Service Director’s."— Presentation transcript:

1 Golden Gate National Recreation Area DRAFT No Action Alternative for Dog Management EIS May 2006 Definition of “No Action” From National Park Service Director’s Order 12 “ No Action” does not mean doing nothing. The No Action alternative for a plan is the description of activities that would continue under existing policies and practices. In other words, it is the “No Plan” or “Continuation of Current Management” alternative. As are all alternatives, the “No Plan” or “Current Management” scenario is projected into the future over the plan’s lifetime.

2 Golden Gate National Recreation Area DRAFT No Action Alternative for Dog Management EIS May 2006 From National Park Service Director’s Order 12 The No Action alternative is both described (current management) and its impacts analyzed in an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS). These are requirements for all federal agencies imposed by the Council on Environmental Quality NEPA regulations (40 CFR 1500 et seq.)

3 Golden Gate National Recreation Area DRAFT No Action Alternative for Dog Management EIS May 2006 No Action Alternative (Forty Most Asked Questions Concerning CEQ’s NEPA Regulations) Impacts of the No Action alternative show how resource conditions would change over the lifetime of a plan or project if current management practices are continued into the future. This is important context information in determining the relative magnitude and intensity of the impacts of action alternatives. In NEPA, this analysis is called the “baseline.”

4 Golden Gate National Recreation Area DRAFT No Action Alternative for Dog Management EIS May 2006 From National Park Service Director’s Order 12 The impacts of the No Action alternative help decision-makers understand comparative impacts between alternatives, as well as the absolute impact of each alternative. Accurately and completely describing the impacts of existing activities is critical to understanding the context, duration and intensity of new impacts, e.g. how impacts would change if an “action” alternative were implemented.

5 Golden Gate National Recreation Area DRAFT No Action Alternative for Dog Management EIS May 2006 The No Action alternative for the Dog Management Plan/EIS is tough to describe due to the history of dog management at GGNRA, the recent court decisions, and the confusion over the status of dogwalking in GGNRA. It is also difficult to project what would continue or change in the future over the planning horizon

6 Golden Gate National Recreation Area DRAFT No Action Alternative for Dog Management EIS May 2006 The 1979 pet policy is part of the No Action alternative, but what is actually going on right now “on the ground” is also part of current management. The No Action alternative is therefore a combination of current enforcement and current conditions.

7 Golden Gate National Recreation Area DRAFT No Action Alternative for Dog Management EIS May 2006 Stinson Beach Per 1979 Pet Policy No pets Current Enforcement No pets on beach Leashed pets permitted in parking lots and picnic areas Current Conditions High visitor use (designated swimming beach); few conflicts Very low dog use Low potential for resource damage

8 Golden Gate National Recreation Area DRAFT No Action Alternative for Dog Management EIS May 2006 Whitegate Ranch Per 1979 Pet Policy Restricted advanced dog training area in area bounded by Panoramic Hwy, State Hwy 1 and Mt. Tam State Park Current Status Not currently used for activity specified in 1979 Pet Policy Current Conditions Infrequent visitation; no known visitor conflicts with dogs Restoration work to remove non- native plants and plant native species (1,750 planted so far)

9 Golden Gate National Recreation Area DRAFT No Action Alternative for Dog Management EIS May 2006 Muir Woods Per 1979 Pet Policy No pets. Current Enforcement Same as 1979 pet policy Current Conditions Potential for resource damage high – redwood forest ecosystem and T&E species, e.g. spotted owl High visitation/crowded trails Very low dog use

10 Golden Gate National Recreation Area DRAFT No Action Alternative for Dog Management EIS May 2006 Muir Beach Per 1979 Pet Policy Voice control or on leash Current Enforcement Voice control or on leash on the beach On leash in parking/picnic areas Current Conditions Some local residents’ dogs run free Heavy visitation on nice days Equestrian/hiking trails nearby Moderate level of visitor conflict T/E species (fish, frogs) and water quality issues (Big Lagoon, Redwood Creek) Wetland and dune habitat

11 Golden Gate National Recreation Area DRAFT No Action Alternative for Dog Management EIS May 2006 Homestead Valley (4 Corners tract) Per 1979 Pet Policy Voice control or on leash Current Enforcement Same as 1979 pet policy Current Conditions Primarily local use, few conflicts Unique vegetation and habitat for federally listed Northern Spotted Owl

12 Golden Gate National Recreation Area DRAFT No Action Alternative for Dog Management EIS May 2006 Tennessee Valley Per 1979 Pet Policy No dogs in Tennessee Valley Pets on leash only on:  Miwok Trail between Tennessee Valley parking area-State Route 1.  Coastal Trail between Hill 88-Muir Beach. Current Enforcement Same as 1979 pet policy

13 Golden Gate National Recreation Area DRAFT No Action Alternative for Dog Management EIS May 2006 Tennessee Valley (cont’d) Current Conditions Low levels of use on trails, but dogs are often off-leash (staff estimate about half are off leash) Thick brush lining the trails, but this does not stop dogs from leaving trials esp. in pursuit of wildlife Tennessee Valley contains large tracts of relatively undisturbed vegetation and wildlife habitat Conflict with coyotes Equestrian trails nearby; Tennessee Valley heavily used by hikers, bicyclists

14 Golden Gate National Recreation Area DRAFT No Action Alternative for Dog Management EIS May 2006 Oakwood Valley (including Alta Ave.) Per 1979 Pet Policy Pets allowed under voice control on:  Oakwood Valley Road to Alta Avenue  Alta Avenue between Marin City- Oakwood Valley Current Enforcement Same as 1979 pet policy

15 Golden Gate National Recreation Area DRAFT No Action Alternative for Dog Management EIS May 2006 Oakwood Valley (including Alta Ave.) (cont’d) Current Conditions Confusing regulations in Alta area (unclear as to what sections of Alta were open to voice control by the 1979 Pet Policy etc.) Alta at Marin City (Donahue St) has high commercial use; many dogs off leash,but visitor conflicts are low Moderate to high use by dogwalkers Low to moderate use by runners, bicyclists, hikers Dogs off leash at knoll east of Oakwood V. trail in federally endangered mission blue butterfly habitat,especially high use in morning Mission blue butterfly habitat in Alta Ave. area – some now fenced Coyote conflicts

16 Golden Gate National Recreation Area DRAFT No Action Alternative for Dog Management EIS May 2006 Marin Headlands Per 1979 Pet Policy Voice control on Rodeo Beach Silent on parking and picnic areas Silent on Rodeo Lagoon

17 Golden Gate National Recreation Area DRAFT No Action Alternative for Dog Management EIS May 2006 Marin Headlands Per 1979 Pet Policy (cont’d) Voice control on following trails:  Coastal trail: from Golden Gate Bridge to junction of Wolf Ridge Trail (Hill 88)  Loop trail: from (Rodeo Beach) parking area to Coastal trail to paved road near Battery Townsley and return via paved road.  Wolf Ridge Trail: between Coastal trail and Miwok Trail.  Miwok Trail: between Wolf Ridge Trail and Coastal trail. Current Enforcement Voice control on Rodeo Beach On leash in parking and picnic areas No pets permitted in Rodeo Lagoon Trails policy same as 1979 Pet Policy

18 Golden Gate National Recreation Area DRAFT No Action Alternative for Dog Management EIS May 2006 Marin Headlands (cont’d) Current Conditions Moderate to high levels of dog use on Rodeo Beach; low to moderate levels of dog use on trails Moderate to high levels of use of trails by hikers Moderate to high levels of use of beach by other visitors Visitor conflicts low Dogs off leash on these trails (historically, during “on-leash period” and now) Some of these trails are in mission blue butterfly habitat identified through USFWS Section 7 consultation Steep terrain of loop trail keeps people on trail Rodeo lagoon has T/E species (Tidewater goby, pelicans) Dogs along west end of lagoon can flush birds Water quality concerns

19 Golden Gate National Recreation Area DRAFT No Action Alternative for Dog Management EIS May 2006 Fort Baker Per 1979 Pet Policy Not included in 1979 Pet Policy Current Enforcement Leashed pets permitted in designated areas Pets not allowed on pier or Chapel Trail Current Conditions Dogs often off-leash at parade ground, Battery Yates and behind museum Mission blue butterfly habitat in area; much of that has been restored

20 Golden Gate National Recreation Area DRAFT No Action Alternative for Dog Management EIS May 2006 Alcatraz Per 1979 Pet Policy No pets. Current Enforcement Same as 1979 pet policy Current Conditions No dogs present Resource damage to nesting birds possible if dogs on island

21 Golden Gate National Recreation Area DRAFT No Action Alternative for Dog Management EIS May 2006 Fort Point Per 1979 Pet Policy No pets Current Enforcement Leashed pets permitted, except inside historic fort No pets permitted on pier due to safety issues Current Conditions Moderate to high visitor use of promenade area by runners, bicyclists, walkers; some dog- related conflicts

22 Golden Gate National Recreation Area DRAFT No Action Alternative for Dog Management EIS May 2006 Crissy Field Per 1979 Pet Policy Voice control or on leash On leash in parking/picnic areas Current Enforcement Same as 1979 pet policy GGNRA initiating regulation to close the wildlife protection area to dogs; close restored marsh and dunes to visitors and dogs

23 Golden Gate National Recreation Area DRAFT No Action Alternative for Dog Management EIS May 2006 Crissy Field (cont’d) Current Conditions High visitor use; high conflict area High use by bicyclists, walkers, picnickers, windsurfers Dog fights, bites, harassment Many commercial dog walkers Restored dune habitat, fenced with low fence; this works fairly well to keep dogs out of dunes Marsh provides important bird habitat Fencing and boardwalk help keep off leash dogs out of marsh Dogs run free on beach Federally threatened snowy plovers have been using Wildlife Protection Area

24 Golden Gate National Recreation Area DRAFT No Action Alternative for Dog Management EIS May 2006 Fort Mason Per 1979 Pet Policy On leash only Pick up pet litter Current Enforcement Same as 1979 pet policy Current Conditions Many off-leash dogs High use, but low conflict area; primarily local use Moderate to high use by bicyclists, runners, walkers on paved trail through Great Meadow

25 Golden Gate National Recreation Area DRAFT No Action Alternative for Dog Management EIS May 2006 West Lobos Creek Per 1979 Pet Policy Not included in 1979 Pet Policy Current Enforcement No pets on boardwalk Current Conditions Low use, low conflict area Drinking water comes from this creek; riparian area

26 Golden Gate National Recreation Area DRAFT No Action Alternative for Dog Management EIS May 2006 Baker Beach Per 1979 Pet Policy Voice control (north beach area) No pets (south beach area) On leash only (picnic/parking area) Current Enforcement Same as 1979 pet policy South beach defined as south of Lobos Creek Current Conditions Moderate to heavy use by visitors; low to medium use of area by dogwalkers Heavy use of north beach by sunbathers Heavy use of picnic areas Low to moderate visitor conflicts Potential for impacts to restored dune habitat

27 Golden Gate National Recreation Area DRAFT No Action Alternative for Dog Management EIS May 2006 China (Phelan) Beach Per 1979 Pet Policy No pets. Current Enforcement Same as 1979 pet policy Current Conditions Formerly designated swimming beach Low levels of visitor use, primarily local use Low potential for resource damage

28 Golden Gate National Recreation Area DRAFT No Action Alternative for Dog Management EIS May 2006 Lands End Per 1979 Pet Policy Voice control. Current Enforcement Same as 1979 pet policy Current Conditions Low dogwalking use Moderate use by hikers, bikers Safety concerns tend to keep dogs on leash Few visitor conflicts Natural seeps, coyotes and migratory birds in area Restoration to remove non-native plants and rework trails ongoing

29 Golden Gate National Recreation Area DRAFT No Action Alternative for Dog Management EIS May 2006 Fort Miley Per 1979 Pet Policy Voice control Pick up pet litter Current Enforcement Same as 1979 pet policy Current Conditions Low dog use W. Ft. Miley moderate to high picnicking use Ropes course in W. Ft. Miley Few conflicts Low potential for resource damage

30 Golden Gate National Recreation Area DRAFT No Action Alternative for Dog Management EIS May 2006 Sutro Heights Per 1979 Pet Policy Leashed pets permitted Pick up pet litter Current Enforcement Same as 1979 pet policy Current Conditions Low visitor use, low conflict Some off leash dog use; complaints by neighbors Nesting birds and raptors Landscaped area, used for weddings and other events.

31 Golden Gate National Recreation Area DRAFT No Action Alternative for Dog Management EIS May 2006 Ocean Beach Per 1979 Pet Policy Voice control On crowded days visitors between Cliff House and stairwell 15 may be asked to leash pets or move south to less crowded areas Current Enforcement Same as 1979 pet policy GGNRA initiating regulation to require dogs on leash in plover area – Sloat Blvd. to Stairwell 21

32 Golden Gate National Recreation Area DRAFT No Action Alternative for Dog Management EIS May 2006 Ocean Beach (cont’d) Current Conditions Off-leash dogs common High visitor use, moderate conflict area kept from being worse by large geographic area Moderate to heavy use by joggers, picnickers, surfers, windsurfers Snowy plover and other shorebirds. Plover area between Sloat and Stairwell 21; plover use most intense between July through April

33 Golden Gate National Recreation Area DRAFT No Action Alternative for Dog Management EIS May 2006 Fort Funston Per 1979 Pet Policy Voice control Current Enforcement Same as 1979 pet policy except: no pets in designated habitat/wildlife protection areas Current Conditions Unrestricted area has high use, high commercial use and visitor conflict Dog bites, horse/dog conflicts, dog/human rescues occur Equestrian use from adjacent stable Human and pet-caused erosion of cliffs potentially damages state endangered bank swallow nests Disturbance on beach or cliffs in closed areas

34 Golden Gate National Recreation Area DRAFT No Action Alternative for Dog Management EIS May 2006 Milagra Ridge Per 1979 Pet Policy Not included in 1979 pet policy Current Enforcement Leashed pets permitted on trails only Current Conditions Low to moderate visitor use Some off leash dogwalking; higher levels of on-leash dogwalking Mission blue butterfly, red-legged frog, San Bruno elfin butterfly habitat; coyote conflicts

35 Golden Gate National Recreation Area DRAFT No Action Alternative for Dog Management EIS May 2006 Sweeney Ridge Per 1979 Pet Policy Not included in 1979 pet policy Current Enforcement Leashed pets permitted Current Conditions Moderate visitor use for hiking Occasional bicycle use Some off leash dogwalking Mission blue butterfly, red-legged frog, San Francisco garter snake, coyote, bobcat and mountain lion habitat

36 Golden Gate National Recreation Area DRAFT No Action Alternative for Dog Management EIS May 2006 Mori Point Per 1979 Pet Policy Not included in 1979 pet policy Current Enforcement Leashed pets permitted in designated areas Current Conditions Moderate use, primarily by locals Moderate bicycle use Dogs often off-leash; waste issues San Francisco garter snake; red-legged frogs

37 Golden Gate National Recreation Area DRAFT No Action Alternative for Dog Management EIS May 2006 Phleger Estate Per 1979 Pet Policy Not included in 1979 pet policy Current Enforcement No pets Current Conditions Steep terrain Dogs not allowed on San Mateo Co. park trails accessing site Equestrian use, moderate bicycle use, low to moderate hiking use Possible steelhead, red-legged frog habitat

38 Golden Gate National Recreation Area DRAFT No Action Alternative for Dog Management EIS May 2006 Data Needs For Dog Management Plan/Environmental Impact Statement Use Information Frequency of use by park site and use type (with/without dogs) How many visitors have dogs- weekday, weekend, summer, winter; commercial vs. individual dog walkers How many visitors with dogs have them off leash Number of dogs walked per visitor Impact information Visitor satisfaction (experience) at each park site Soil samples and vegetation condition Estimates of dog waste and relative percent left on ground Site specific information of impacts caused to birds/wildlife in GGNRA by humans with and without dogs


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