Demonstrates that an effort to protect only listed species would lead to a reserve that was closer to the urbanizing areas of Tucson, and therefore more expensive. The Listed Species Reserve is also one that makes a call on more non-federal land. By limiting the focus of the reserve to listed species, the broader and long term benefits are lost, and trade-offs of high potential habitat are not based on such comprehensive biological principles.
The report concludes that "it is clear to us that the Sonoran Desert Conservation Plan is a credible, science-based process designed to achieve clear and laudable goals for the long term conservation of biodiversity in Pima County." Recommendations included giving more attention to the effects of roads and evaluating the effects of livestock grazing on biodiversity.
If one species had to be chosen to preserve and restore, perhaps it should be cottonwood. Cottonwood-willow forests, where they exist and are healthy, indicated the presence of a viable riparian area, which is in turn the key to conserving great proportions of our native species. A reflection of the dire status of our riparian systems is that the Sonoran cottonwood-willow and Sonoran mesquite-cottonwood forests.
A thoughtful and many ways ground breaking study on the potential impacts that future climate variability might have on plants, animals, people and ecosystem processes. It describes the geographic setting of Pima County, the history of weather data collection; variables such as precipitation, variability of rainfall, drought, floods, groundwater, temperature, frost and potential evapotranspiration; and the potential responses of over forth species of concern to short term climate variation.
Surveys were conducted for Huachuca water umbel at the Cienega Creek Natural Preserve, the Bingham Cienega Preserve, and the La Cebadilla property. Because the plant was detected in sites that are further north and at lower elevations than previously considered, the study recommends that assumptions regarding the potential presence of the species throughout Pima County should be re-examined.
Species re-establishment is the attempt to establish a species in an area which was once part of its historical range, but from which it has been extirpated or become extinct in the wild. Pima County and other agencies have proposed to re-establish species at a number of sites. Relevant laws and regulations governing re-establishment efforts are discussed. Case studies illustrate how previous efforts have been conducted and how the populations have fared.
Pima County assembled a comprehensive land cover map for the the SDCP and in the process of doing so, identified the strengths and weaknesses of prior mapping efforts. In order to combine the best aspects of past efforts, a common language had to be established among the classification systems.
The cornerstone of any habitat conservation plan is the establishment of a set of reserves that are ultimately managed to preserve or enhance populations of a particular species or suite of species. Also, with any priority species in a particular region there are geographic areas that are much more important to the species than others. Identifying those areas is an important part of the planning process and a required activity to help assure that the best habitat areas for each species are identified and targeted for inclusion within the reserve system.
The most complete version assembled of the story of the 56 plants and animals in Pima County that are in need of protection under the SDCP. Three years ago when discussions began about creating a multi-species protection plan, there was no comprehensive inventory of the resource base.
Documents the representation of aspects of biodiversity within both the existing system of protected land and the biologically preferred alternative of the SDCP. It is necessary to think not only in terms of species, but also in terms of vegetation communities. Aspects of both were incorporated into the design of the SDCP. This study provides a detailed look at the twenty-one special element conservation targets that were considered by the Science Technical Advisory Team for the Plan.
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