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Corridors Handbook and Case Study

Corridors Handbook and case study can help plan watershed scale wildlife projects.

In 1999, the Natural Resources Conservation Services (NRCS) Watershed Science and Wildlife Teams, working with Utah State University, developed a comprehensive watershed scale wildlife habitat planning tool to be incorporated into the National Biology Handbook (The Handbook). While The Handbook presents sound ecological principles and methodologies, application of this technology for wildlife conservation at a watershed scale on private property is relatively sparse.

The NRCS is the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) agency charged with providing assistance to private landowners and communities who voluntarily participate in conservation programs. The NRCS actively promotes conservation corridor planning for wildlife at a watershed scale. However, it recognizes that the long-term wildlife conservation value of corridors is highly dependent on the health of the adjacent landscape and large patches of native vegetation. Implementing successful watershed scale wildlife conservation projects requires the cooperation of private landowners, local governments, private non-profit conservation organizations, and state and federal agencies working at both the watershed and site-specific scale. Partnerships and cooperation among many of those committed to land, water, and wildlife conservation are already a reality in the Henry’s Fork watershed. The key to success of present and future wildlife conservation efforts will be a vision shared by farmers, ranchers, developers, and communities willing to support and participate in conservation projects.

This case study has been prepared for NRCS field office personnel and their partners in wildlife conservation. It is primarily directed at assisting those involved in watershed scale wildlife corridor planning projects in agriculturally dominated landscapes like the lower Henry’s Fork. All aspects of the case study are tiered to the methodology and principles detailed in The Handbook.

These documents require Adobe Acrobat Reader.
 
 Cover, Acknowledgements and Table of Contents (PDF, 3.35 MB)
 Preface and Background (PDF, 4.8 MB)
 Case Study Site (PDF, 4.6 MB)
 Methods (PDF, 1.48 MB)
 Case Study (PDF, 36.9 MB)
         PRECONDITIONS
         IDENTIFY PROBLEMS AND OPPORTUNITIES
         DETERMINE OBJECTIVES
         INVENTORY RESOURCES
         FORMULATE ALTERNATIVES
         EVALUATE ALTERNATIVES
         MAKE DECISIONS
         IMPLEMENT PLAN
         EVALUATE PLAN
 Farm and Ranch Scale (PDF, 1.56 MB)
 Conclusions (PDF, 3.41 MB)
 Bibliography and References Cited (PDF, 478 KB)
 Appendix A - Wildlife Species Inventory (PDF, 5.5 MB)
 Appendix B - Corridor Inventory Worksheets (PDF, 627 KB)
 Appendix C - Species of Special Concern (PDF, 971 KB)
 Appendix D - Evaluation Worksheets (PDF, 5.71 MB)
 Appendix E - GIS Data Layers (PDF, 13 MB)