AQ12_ATT A_TWG_Presentation_031008

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					 Middle Fork Project
AQ 12 - Attachment A

California Red-legged Frog
      Site Assessment




      March 10, 2008
    Purpose of Site Assessment
Provide U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service with
   sufficient information to determine if
    protocol-level surveys are required




                 California red-legged frog
                  (Rana aurora draytonii )


                            1
             Study Objectives
 Document   the distribution and abundance of
  CRLF populations in the study area
 Identify and map potential habitat for CRLF
  in the study area




                        2
California Red-legged Frog Site Assessment Study Objectives and Related
                             Study Elements and Reports


                Document distribution and                                   Map potential CRLF habitat
              abundance of CRLF in study area                                   in the study area



                 Compile current and historic                     Compile and review             Compile and review
                   occurrence information                          existing vegetation             existing aquatic
                                                                  community mapping               habitat mapping


        Document the presence of CRLF during CRLF field
         reconnaissance surveys & other aquatic surveys            Refine and expand existing habitat mapping based
                                                                        on Project video and aerial photographs

                  Identify current and historic
                       CRLF occurrences                           Verify habitat mapping through field reconnaissance
                                                                            surveys (by helicopter and foot)


                                                                                Develop potential CRLF
                                                                                     habitat map



                                              Prepare site assessment report




                                 CRLF Site Assessment
                                                           3
         Extent of Study Area
One mile around :
 Existing Project facilities and features,
  recreation facilities, dispersed
  concentrated use areas and river/stream
  reaches
 Potential Project betterments


            (below 5,000 feet in elevation)




                           4
Current and Historic Range of CRLF
   Five isolated populations currently known
    to occur in foothills along west slope of
    Sierra Nevada
   Three of these within Middle Fork
    American River Watershed
   Study area is within:
     Current and historic range of CRLF
     USFWS CRLF Recovery Unit 1


                          5
Known Locations of CRLF in the MFAR
            Watershed
    One known CRLF record within study area

     Single, adult CRLF
      detected in June
      2001 in ephemeral
      pool

                               Ralston Ridge Pond, August 2007


   Two additional records outside the study
    area, but within the MFAR Watershed
                           6
Known Locations of CRLF in the MFAR
        Watershed (cont.)




                7
     Map Potential CRLF Habitat
         in the Study Area

 Upland habitat
 Aquatic habitat




                    8
Map Potential CRLF Habitat
 Upland Habitat in Study Area




               9
         Map Potential CRLF Habitat
      CRLF Aquatic Habitat Characteristics
             (based on USFWS 2002)

   Marshes
   Springs
   Permanent and semi-permanent natural ponds
   Ponded and backwater portions of streams
   Artificial impoundments such as stock ponds,
    irrigation ponds, and siltation ponds
   Slow-moving shallow riffle zones in creeks




                         10
          Map Potential CRLF Habitat
       CRLF Aquatic Habitat Characteristics
           Additional Characteristics
                (based on other literature)

   Dense or shrubby riparian vegetation, incl.
    willows, cattails, and bulrushes (USFWS 2007)
   Significant portion of water body with dense
    vegetation providing shade
    (Hayes and Jennings 1998)
   Deep (0.5-1.5 meters) still or slow-moving water
    (Hayes and Jennings 1998)


                            11
         Map Potential CRLF Habitat
         Aquatic Habitat Characteristics
           Additional Characteristics
             (based on other literature cont.)


   Water remaining long enough for
    metamorphosis of most tadpole (generally July
    to September) (USFWS 2006)
   Habitats free of introduced predators (i.e.
    bullfrogs, non-native crayfish, and various
    fishes) (USFWS 2002)



                            12
       Map Potential CRLF Habitat
             CRLF Aquatic Habitat
                  (does not include)



   Deep lacustrine water bodies (lakes and
    reservoirs > 50 acres)
   Fast flowing rivers




                          13
    Aquatic Habitats in the Study Area
   Rivers
   Large and Moderate Streams
   Small Tributaries
   Reservoirs
   Diversion Pools
   Off-Channel Ponds




                        14
Aquatic Habitats in Study Area




              15
                        Rivers
   Middle Fork American
    River and Rubicon River
     Not appropriate CRLF
      habitat
     Barriers to dispersal as
      defined by USFWS
     Rocky and fast-flowing
     No backwater areas          Middle Fork

     Banks do not support       American River


      dense vegetation (e.g.,
      cattail, bulrushes)


                            16
         Large and Moderate Streams
   Duncan Creek
   Long Canyon Creek
   North Fork Long Canyon Creek
   South Fork Long Canyon Creek
                         Not appropriate CRLF habitat
                         Bedrock channel (no backwater areas)
                         Inappropriate instream pool habitats
                          (large, rocky, open pools)
                         Banks do not support dense vegetation
                          (e.g., cattail, bulrush)
    Long Canyon Creek


                               17
         Small Tributary Streams

                      Eleven accessible small,
                       tributary streams
                       surveyed by field crews
                      Small, remote tributaries
                       of upper MFAR analyzed
                       by aerial photography and
                       helicopter surveys
Gas Canyon Creek




                          18
 Small Tributary Streams (cont.)
                         Not appropriate CRLF habitat
                         High gradient
                         Bedrock channel (no backwater
                          areas)
                         Inappropriate instream pool habitats
                          (Plunge-pool and waterfall)
                         Banks do not support dense
                          vegetation (e.g., cattail, bulrush)

American Canyon Creek




                               19
        Reservoirs/Interbay/Afterbays
   Hell Hole Reservoir and Ralston
    Afterbay
     Not CRLF habitat as defined by USFWS
     Considered barriers to dispersal
   Middle Fork Interbay
       Not appropriate CRLF habitat
       Deep impoundment
       Steep canyon walls
       No floating or emergent vegetation


                           20
                  Diversion Pools

   North and South
    Fork Long
    Canyon
    Diversion Pools


                                  North Fork Long Canyon Diversion


 Not appropriate CRLF habitat
 Do not support dense vegetation (e.g., cattails, bullrushes,
  willows)
 Lack sufficient water though August or September for
  tadpoles to complete metamorphosis
                             21
             Off-Channel Ponds

Off-channel ponds at 5 locations:

   Auburn State Recreation Area (ASRA)
   Teichert Industries open pit mines
   Summit Ranch
   Horseshoe Bar
   Ralston Ridge



                      22
  Off-Channel Ponds (cont.)

ASRA     Teichert Industries   Summit Ranch




                23
Off-Channel Ponds (cont.)
    Horseshoe Bar Area




            24
             Off-Channel Ponds (cont.)
                   Horseshoe Bar Area

   Ponds D and E
   Potential CRLF breeding
    habitat
     Appropriate water depth
     Perennial ponds (retain water long
      enough for complete
      metamorphosis)
     Support dense vegetation on banks
      (e.g., willow, blackberry, California
                                              Pond “D” – Horseshoe Bar
      grape)

                                25
        Off-Channel Ponds (cont.)
                 Horseshoe Bar Area



                           Ponds C and F
                           Potential dispersal
                            habitat
        Pond C




 Water is shallow in both ponds (< 2 feet deep)
 Pond F is ephemeral (dry in most years by June)

                            26
         Off-Channel Ponds (cont.)
                Horseshoe Bar Area

   Pond G and South Lake
                       Not appropriate CRLF habitat
                       Predatory species present
                       Subject to water level
                        fluctuations of the MFAR
                       Banks do not support dense
                        vegetation (e.g., cattails,
                        bulrushes)
                       South Lake is very deep (~ 50
       Pond G           feet)


                        27

				
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