Region 5 Recovery Efforts for the Bog Turtle

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Suzanne Macey
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DEC looks at known occurrences with 1 mile
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FWS looks at known occurrences plus the
potential for suitable habitat
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Contact DEC and/or FWS for assistance
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Use the following analytical approach:
1. Is the proposed project within an area
identified by the FWS as known or likely to
contain bog turtles (IPaC)?
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If no, no further coordination for BT necessary
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If yes, then…
2. Is the proposed project at an elevation of 1,000
feet or less?
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If no, no further coordination for BT necessary
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If yes, then…
3. Is there any suitable BT habitat present within
the proposed project area?
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Conduct Phase 1 survey – anytime, anyone
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If results are no, submit results of Phase 1 survey
report and field data sheets to NYFO for review
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If results are yes, conduct analysis of effects and
coordinate with NYFO to determine if Phase 2 or 3
surveys are necessary
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Data forms, including opinion on habitat
Topographic map of location of site
Details of project
Project design map
 Show location of wetlands/streams
 Wetland type (PEM, PSS, PFO, POW)
 Designated survey areas
Color photos
Lead surveyor’s name
Date of visit
Description of hydrology, soils and vegetation, etc.
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Death or injury to bog turtles during construction
activities
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Filling/loss of nesting, basking, hibernation habitat
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Fragmentation of habitat and alterations to dispersal
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Introduction of contaminated surface water runoff
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Temporary or permanent alteration of hydrology
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Introduction of nutrients – septic, WWTP
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Introduction of invasive species
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Introduction of people, pets, and recreational vehicles
into wetlands, etc.
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Should the proposed project have the potential
to impact BT, then there are 2 options:
1. Assume BT presence and avoid wetland
impacts, or
2. Conduct Phase 2 survey (or possibly
Phase 3 trapping)
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Note: Phase 2 surveys are only to detect presence
or probable absence
Recommend “qualified surveyor”
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Qualified surveyor must be permitted by DEC for
location and period of survey
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Survey should focus in areas of wetland that meet
3 criteria
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Areas meeting criteria are “designated survey
areas”
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Note: Phase 2 surveys are only to detect presence
or probable absence
Recommend “qualified surveyor”

Qualified surveyor must be permitted by DEC for
location and period of survey

Survey should focus in areas of wetland that meet
3 criteria

Areas meeting criteria are “designated survey
areas”
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Conduct only between April 15 – June 15
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LPPPRU: May 1 – June 30
Minimum of 4 surveys per wetland site
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At least 2 surveys in May
April 15 – April 30: separate by 6 or more days
May 1 – June 15: separate by 3 or more days
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Survey time should be at least 4 to 6 person-hours
per acre
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Once a BT is found, Phase 2 ends
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Details of project
Topographic map of location of site
Project design map
Proposed conservation measures
Map with coarse vegetation types
Table of current vs. proposed future acreage of veg
Wetland delineations and proposed mitigation
Color photos
Lead surveyor’s name
Results of survey
Details on suitable habitat that extends off-site, etc.
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The results of the Phase 2 can go two ways:
1. Results are negative for BT detection =
- Coordination with NYFO ends for BT
2. Results are positive for BT detection =
- Avoid all wetland impacts OR
- Formal consultation or HCP necessary
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Use when Phase 2 surveys fail to detect BT in:
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Large wetland complexes
Areas of dense vegetation and/or
Low density
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Must coordinate with NYFO – request protocol
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Qualified surveyor must be permitted by DEC
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Can trap concurrently with Phase 2 survey
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Minimum 20 consecutive days – end by June 30
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Minimum 20 traps per hectare
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See website for fact sheets:
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LPPPRU
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HHRU
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Conservation Zones
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Remove lot lines and associated construction activities
from the 300 foot buffer around wetland (Zone 1)
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Conduct pre-construction survey to remove any bog
turtles from work area
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Install silt fencing to prevent bog turtles from entering
work area
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Keep all disturbance, including equipment, vehicles,
staging areas, temporary roads, and soil stock piles out
of Zone 1
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Eliminate the use of basement window wells or require
that window wells be covered or surrounded by a
barrier to prevent trapping turtles
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Use grate or catch basins with an opening size small
enough to prevent trapping turtles
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Ensure that uncontrolled runoff does not occur in the
wetland and that water quality is protected
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Stabilize disturbed areas after construction is complete
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Avoid stormwater basins in Zone 1
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Construct retention basins on 3 to 1 slopes which
would allow turtles of any species to escape
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Place physical barriers between the useable area of
each lot and the adjacent wetland buffer (e.g., natural
fences, split rail, boulders)
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Phase 1 surveys – anyone can do
Phase 2 surveys – need to be qualified
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Ability to find bog turtles
 100 turtles in the last 20 years
 Independently found at least 20 turtles at 5 sites within
the past 5 years
 Minimum 2 full field seasons of MS or PhD-related work
at a minimum of 2 sites and has independently found at
least 5 turtles
 Completed 4 years of certified apprenticeship program
under current surveyor
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Extent of field experience with bog turtles
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At least 2 field seasons working with turtles (e.g., surveys,
telemetry)
Written documentation
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Demonstrate ability to produce accurate, comprehensive,
well-organized written reports
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Experience with implementing survey protocols
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Phase 1: within the past 5 years, surveyor independently
conducted at least 10 Phase 1 surveys, accurately
determining whether or not potential turtles were present
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Phase 2: within the past 5 years, surveyor conducted at
least 5 Phase 2 surveys in the capacity of principal
investigator or 10 Phase 2 surveys as an assistant
References
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Need 3 references
Surveyors need to submit updated info annually by
December 31
List will be updated in early Spring annually, periodic
updates within the year as necessary
Contact:
Noelle Rayman
New York Field Office
[email protected]
607-753-9334
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