Dear visitors, friends, and stakeholders,
The new Forest Service 2012 Planning Rule requires all forests to transition to the new monitoring evaluation program requirements of our fiscal year beginning October 1. As part of this review process we are discussing our monitoring program with members of the public and our stakeholders.
Our goal at this step is to develop any needed changes in our monitoring programs to comply with the new planning rule. The new planning rule monitoring requirements cover the following eight areas:
- Watershed conditions
- Focal species
- Federally listed threatened and endangered species, proposed and candidate species, species of conservation concern
- Visitor use and satisfaction
- Climate change
- Multiple use opportunities
- Productivity of the land
We already monitor a wide variety of species and data results on wildlife, vegetation, watersheds, soils, outdoor recreation and environmental education in our current plan. What we have found is that the new rule goes into different details in some areas, expands in others, and updates to new terms for species monitoring. We know we will be revising our monitoring program.
Now is your opportunity to help us answer the question…
Are we monitoring the right thing?
We’ve been meeting with various groups about the program and on January 28th we held a public open house at Kenlake State Resort Park. We appreciate everyone who came to our open house and other group meetings. Some have already sent us their suggestions. We would also like to hear from you.
You can comment any time before April 1, 2016.
You can find the updates and support materials on line at https://www.landbetweenthelakes.us/monitoring-program/. Be sure to refresh the page to see any updates.
Our official commenting period however, will be from March 1 through March 31. We will post the input received during this process on our website for everyone to review.
So far, some of the suggestions include choosing different species to monitor, tracking backpacking permits in the visitor usage section, sharing more information on our efforts with mitigating climate change and monitoring progress of restoring natural wetlands.
If you have questions, please contact Barbara Wysock, Area Planner, at firstname.lastname@example.org or270-924-2000. She can answer your questions or she will find the answer to your question.
Thank you again to all of you participating in this resource management process. Please continue to give us your input around this important issue for Land Between The Lakes National Recreation Area.
Have a great week.