Galbreath Special Status Species Assessment


Before I worked on this project, I had no idea how to apply GIS to basic ecological concepts. – Christoph Schopfer, Geography Major

spotted owl potential distribution of spotted owl on preserve purple influorescence of lupine potential distribution of lupin on Preserve

Special status species are species listed with some level of protection by non-governmental organizations or state or federal agencies. A team of students and Preserve staff mapped potential habitat for 110 special status plants and animals on the Galbreath Wildands Preserve. The work was undertaken as a management resources to avoid environmental impacts for Preserve activities (facilty, research, education) and conserve biodiversity on site. The project created professional experience for Biology and Geography undergraduates and graduate students who worked on an interdisciplinary team to develop assessment techniques and methods.

Project Lead(s): Claudia Luke

Dates: Summer 2010 to Fall 2011

Scholarship: Student assistantships

Course(s): --- 

Funding: Bob Johnson Family Donation

Faculty:  Nathan Rank (Biology), Derek Girman (Biology), Rich Whitkus (Biology)

Students: Neal Ramus (Business), Emily Harvey (Biology), Kandis Gilmore (Biology), Linden Schneider (Biology), Christoph Schopfer (Geography), James Sherwood (Geography)

Partners: SSU Preserves

Methods: We identified special status species with potential to occur in the Study Area using existing agency databases and publications. A likelihood of occurrence analysis was conducted for 110 species by compiling species-specific habitat information, mapping species-specific habitat using Geographic Information System (GIS), and evaluating the likelihood of occurrence in the Preserve. Species were given one of four likelihood of occurrence ratings based upon habitat quality, habitat quantity, distribution, and commoness: known to occur, likely to occur, unlikely to occur, and not expected to occur.

Galbreath Special Status Species Assessments 

Likelihood of occurrence analyses for 110 special status species (fungi, bryophytes, plants, invertebrates, amphibians, reptiles, birds and mammals) are listed in Galbreath Special Status Species Assessments. Likelihood of occurrence is not meant as an absolute indicator of the quality of the habitat. Rather it is a relative measure based on the distribution of potential habitat on the Preserve.