Habitat Program

Federal Way, WA, United States

Habitat Program

Federal Way, WA, United States
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Hossain M.Y.,Kagoshima University | Hossain M.Y.,University of Rajshahi | Ohtomi J.,Kagoshima University | Jaman A.,University of Rajshahi | And 2 more authors.
Journal of Freshwater Ecology | Year: 2012

The Monsoon River prawn, Macrobrachium malcolmsonii (Milne-Edwards, 1844), is one of the dominant benthic species in the Ganges River. Our study describes some biological parameters including sex ratio, length-frequency distributions (LFD), length-weight relationships (LWR), and relative-condition (Kn) factor of M. malcolmsonii in the lower part of the Ganges River, northwestern Bangladesh. A total of 502 specimens of the ranges 3.54-11.76 cm total length and 0.50-15.20 g body weight were analyzed in this study. Sampling was done using traditional fishing traps (Kara) during the period from March to October 2010. The overall sex ratio showed no significant differences from the expected value 1:1 (χ2=0.20, p=0.157), and there was no significant difference in the LFD between the sexes (p=0.460). The allometric coefficient b for the LWR indicated isometric growth (~3.00) in males and negative allometric growth (<3.00) in females. Kn showed significant variation (p<0.01) between the sexes, with better performance by females (1.027±0.107) than males (0.968±0.130). To our knowledge, this study presents the first comprehensive description of life-history traits for M. malcolmsonii from Bangladeshi waters. Our data should be useful for the sustainable management of this prawn fishery in the Ganges River basin of Bangladesh and neighboring countries. © 2012 Taylor & Francis.

Tidwell K.S.,Oregon Zoo | Shepherdson D.J.,Oregon Zoo | Hayes M.P.,Habitat Program
Journal of Herpetology | Year: 2013

Few data exist that quantify evasive behavior in postmetamorphic anurans. On the basis of our casual observations that Oregon Spotted Frogs (Rana pretiosa) from one of two different populations appeared to exhibit a more pronounced evasive response, we used a pseudopredator stimulus to quantify the evasive response of juveniles from the two populations. We drew test animals from a pool of animals for each population that were captive-reared under identical conditions. Using latency to initial response, we compared the distribution of response times between the two populations at two sequential intervals over the rearing period. In both experiments, the Conboy Lake population had shorter latency-to-response times than the Black River population. However, we also found that latency-to-response times were shorter during the second test interval than during the first test interval for each population. The basis of population differences in response times may reside in differences in the predator set influencing each population, contaminants differentially influencing the Black River population in a negative manner, or some combination of both. Explanation for the faster latency-to-response times in the second experiment is unclear since both maturation and the length of the captive rearing interval may contribute to the effect, but they are confounded in this study. Copyright 2013 Society for the Study of Amphibians and Reptiles.

Vadas R.L.,Jr. | Beecher H.A.,Habitat Program | Boessow S.N.,Habitat Program | Kohr J.H.,Habitat Program
North American Journal of Fisheries Management | Year: 2016

During 2001–2003, we counted redds of Coastal Cutthroat Trout Oncorhynchus clarkii clarkii and measured microhabitat variables at fresh redds in Irely Creek upstream of Irely Lake in a largely undisturbed watershed within Olympic National Park, Washington. Redd numbers declined abruptly in 2003, the year after a dry summer caused the dewatering of Irely Lake; therefore, we continued the redd counts during 2004–2012 to determine whether pond dewatering was a factor in the decline and whether redd counts would track Irely Lake surface area. The estimated number of redds varied from a high of 51 (in 2002) to a low of 2 (in 2006, 2007, and 2010); increases in estimated redd number occurred after wetter summers, and decreases were observed after drier summers. This pattern was significant in chi-square tests for redd number and the change in redd number with Irely Lake condition in the preceding year (dry, semi-dry, or wet). Rather than indicating juvenile mortality, the lack of a lag in response suggests the mortality of adults that would otherwise have spawned during the subsequent spring. The clear impact of dry summers in one of the wettest regions of North America underscores the important influence of hydrology on fish, even in the absence of other disturbances. Received September 16, 2015; accepted March 15, 2016 Published online July 20, 2016 © American Fisheries Society 2016.

Wilhere G.F.,Habitat Program
Conservation Biology | Year: 2012

Policy advocacy is an issue regularly debated among conservation scientists. These debates have focused on intentional policy advocacy by scientists, but advocacy can also be unintentional. I define inadvertent policy advocacy as the act of unintentionally expressing personal policy preferences or ethical judgments in a way that is nearly indistinguishable from scientific judgments. A scientist may be well intentioned and intellectually honest but still inadvertently engage in policy advocacy. There are two ways to inadvertently engage in policy advocacy. First, a scientist expresses an opinion that she or he believes is a scientific judgment but it is actually an ethical judgment or personal policy preference. Second, a scientist expresses an opinion that he or she knows is an ethical judgment or personal policy preference but inadvertently fails to effectively communicate the nature of the opinion to policy makers or the public. I illustrate inadvertent advocacy with three examples: recovery criteria in recovery plans for species listed under the U.S. Endangered Species Act, a scientific peer review of a recovery plan for the Northern Spotted Owl (Strix occidentalis caurina), and the International Union for Conservation of Nature's definition of threatened. In each example, scientists expressed ethical judgments or policy preferences, but their value judgments were not identified as such, and, hence, their value judgments were opaque to policy makers and the public. Circumstances suggest their advocacy was inadvertent. I believe conservation scientists must become acutely aware of the line between science and policy and avoid inadvertent policy advocacy because it is professional negligence, erodes trust in scientists and science, and perpetuates an ethical vacuum that undermines the rational political discourse necessary for the evolution of society's values. The principal remedy for inadvertent advocacy is education of conservation scientists in an effort to help them understand how science and values interact to fulfill the mission of conservation science. © 2011 Society for Conservation Biology.

Barbour A.B.,University of Florida | Adams A.J.,Center for Fisheries Enhancement | Yess T.,Northern Kentucky University | Behringer D.C.,University of Florida | Wolfe R.K.,Habitat Program
Fisheries Research | Year: 2012

Studies of fish ecology are enhanced by precise and accurate knowledge of survival, which can be estimated from capture-recapture/resighting based survival probabilities. We conducted a cost-benefit analysis of resighting by an array of 11 autonomous PIT tag antennae and recapture by seine netting, and compared the effectiveness of the two methods for recapturing/resighting marked fish in an estuarine environment. During three separate marking periods, we marked a total of 2109 fish with PIT tags, recapturing 106 by seine (5.0%) and resighting 1700 by antennae (80.6%). Antennae resulted in precise monthly survival estimates while seine netting did not, but antennae did not collect ancillary data (e.g., growth) and their use was limited to areas where fish used constricted passes <10-30. m in width. Despite a reliance on seine nets to capture fish for marking and high initial construction costs, the cost-effectiveness of PIT tag antennae (US$45-$57 per unique fish resighted) exceeded that of seine netting (US$167-$934). Considering physical capture was required to mark fish, the use of PIT tag antennae is a dual-method approach incorporating both physical captures and telemetry. This dual-method approach can collect cost-effective and highly detailed data that could enhance our ability to make informed management and conservation decisions. © 2012 Elsevier B.V.

Yahnke A.E.,University of Washington | Grue C.E.,U.S. Geological Survey | Hayes M.P.,Habitat Program | Troiano A.T.,University of Washington
Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry | Year: 2013

Conflict between native amphibians and aquatic weed management in the Pacific Northwest is rarely recognized because most native stillwater-breeding amphibian species move upland during summer, when herbicide application to control weeds in aquatic habitats typically occurs. However, aquatic weed management may pose a risk for aquatic species present in wetlands through the summer, such as the Oregon spotted frog (OSF, Rana pretiosa), a state endangered species in Washington. Acute toxicity of herbicides used to control aquatic weeds tends to be low, but the direct effects of herbicide tank mixes on OSFs have remained unexamined. We exposed juvenile OSFs to tank mixes of the herbicide imazapyr, a surfactant, and a marker dye in a 96-h static-renewal test. The tank mix was chosen because of its low toxicity to fish and its effectiveness in aquatic weed control. Concentrations were those associated with low-volume (3.5L/ha) and high-volume (7.0L/ha) applications of imazapyr and a clean-water control. Following exposure, frogs were reared for two months in clean water to identify potential latent effects on growth. Endpoints evaluated included feeding behavior, growth, and body and liver condition indices. We recorded no mortalities and found no significant differences for any end point between the herbicide-exposed and clean-water control frogs. The results suggest that imazapyr use in wetland restoration poses a low risk of direct toxic effects on juvenile OSFs. © 2012 SETAC.

Wilhere G.F.,Habitat Program
Journal of Wildlife Management | Year: 2012

Habitat suitability index (HSI) models rarely characterize the uncertainty associated with their estimates of habitat quality despite the fact that uncertainty can have important management implications. The purpose of this paper was to explore the use of Bayesian belief networks (BBNs) for representing and propagating 3 types of uncertainty in HSI models-uncertainty in the suitability index relationships, the parameters of the HSI equation, and measurement of habitat variables (i.e., model inputs). I constructed a BBN-HSI model, based on an existing HSI model, using Netica™ software. I parameterized the BBN's conditional probability tables via Monte Carlo methods, and developed a discretization scheme that met specifications for numerical error. I applied the model to both real and dummy sites in order to demonstrate the utility of the BBN-HSI model for 1) determining whether sites with different habitat types had statistically significant differences in HSI, and 2) making decisions based on rules that reflect different attitudes toward risk-maximum expected value, maximin, and maximax. I also examined effects of uncertainty in the habitat variables on the model's output. Some sites with different habitat types had different values for E[HSI], the expected value of HSI, but habitat suitability was not significantly different based on the overlap of 90% confidence intervals for E[HSI]. The different decision rules resulted in different rankings of sites, and hence, different decisions based on risk. As measurement uncertainty in habitat variables increased, sites with significantly different (α = 0.1) E[HSI] became statistically more similar. Incorporating uncertainty in HSI models enables explicit consideration of risk and more robust habitat management decisions. © 2012 The Wildlife Society.

PubMed | Habitat Program
Type: | Journal: Conservation biology : the journal of the Society for Conservation Biology | Year: 2016

Like many federal statutes, the U.S. Endangered Species Act (ESA) contains vague or ambiguous language. The meaning imparted to the ESAs unclear language can profoundly impact the fates of endangered and threatened species. Hence, conservation scientists should contribute to the interpretation of the ESA when vague or ambiguous language contains scientific words or refers to scientific concepts. Scientists need to know at least these 2 facts about statutory interpretation: statutory interpretation is subjective and the potential influence of normative values results in different expectations for the parties involved. With the possible exception of judges, all conventional participants in statutory interpretation are serving their own interests, advocating for their preferred policies, or biased. Hence, scientists can play a unique role by informing the interpretative process with objective, policy-neutral information. Conversely, scientists may act as advocates for their preferred interpretation of unclear statutory language. The different roles scientists might play in statutory interpretation raise the issues of advocacy and competency. Advocating for a preferred statutory interpretation is legitimate political behavior by scientists, but statutory interpretation can be strongly influenced by normative values. Therefore, scientists must be careful not to commit stealth policy advocacy. Most conservation scientists lack demonstrable competence in statutory interpretation and therefore should consult or collaborate with lawyers when interpreting statutes. Professional scientific societies are widely perceived by the public as unbiased sources of objective information. Therefore, professional scientific societies should remain policy neutral and present all interpretations of unclear statutory language; explain the semantics and science both supporting and contradicting each interpretation; and describe the potential consequences of implementing each interpretation. A review of scientists interpretations of the phrase significant portion of its range in the ESA is used to critique the role of scientists and professional societies in statutory interpretation.

News Article | February 28, 2017
Site: www.marketwired.com

Shell Marine & Wildlife Habitat Program will help address conservation challenges across U.S. WASHINGTON, DC--(Marketwired - February 28, 2017) - The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) and Shell Oil Company (Shell) today announced the geographic expansion of their successful Shell Marine Habitat Program, a move that will broaden Shell's conservation scope beyond the Gulf Coast to better reflect the company's commitment to help protect and conserve the communities where it lives and operates. The expanded program, renamed the Shell Marine & Wildlife Habitat Program (SMWHP), now includes a wider focus with additional geographies and habitats that will be announced in the near future. In addition, SMWHP will consolidate several of Shell's key conservation initiatives under one platform. "Conservation is a vital part of our operations," said Bruce Culpepper, Shell's US Country Chair. "That is why we partner and engage with key organizations such as the NFWF to leverage their expertise and increase the impact of our conservation initiatives. Working together helps better preserve the environment we all enjoy." Since 1998, the NFWF and Shell partnership has funded 270 projects, supporting the protection, restoration and management of over 155,000 acres of habitat, as well as the improved monitoring and management of key species in coastal ecosystems. NFWF has leveraged Shell's funds over the years to generate more than $78.8 million for on-the-ground conservation. "We are pleased to build on our long history of success working with Shell to support vital conservation efforts along the Gulf Coast," said Jeff Trandahl, executive director and CEO of NFWF. "This expanded focus will enable our partnership to address a wider range of conservation challenges across the nation, to the benefit of species, habitats and local communities by providing the resources necessary to take action." For additional information on funding opportunities available through the Partnership, please visit the Shell Marine & Wildlife Habitat Program site: http://www.nfwf.org/partnerships/corporate/Pages/shell.aspx Shell Oil Company is an affiliate of the Royal Dutch Shell plc, a global group of energy and petrochemical companies with operations in more than 70 countries. In the U.S., Shell operates in 50 states and employs more than 20,000 people working to help tackle the challenges of the new energy future. About the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) protects and restores our nation's wildlife and habitats. Chartered by Congress in 1984, NFWF directs public conservation dollars to the most pressing environmental needs and matches those investments with private contributions. NFWF works with government, nonprofit and corporate partners to find solutions for the most intractable conservation challenges. Over the last three decades, NFWF has funded more than 4,500 organizations and committed more than $3.5 billion to conservation projects. Learn more at www.nfwf.org.

News Article | April 24, 2016
Site: cleantechnica.com

Habitat for Humanity homes are a remarkable support to families. Pacific Gas & Electric Co. (PG&E), the leading utility with rooftop solar in the nation, deserves more praise for new support for Habitat for Humanity. In a news release, the utility announced its $1 million commitment to the installation of rooftop solar on nearly 100 solar-powered Habitat for Humanity homes. The homes supplied with the money-saving and environmentally kind rooftop solar will be via 17 different Habitat for Humanity local affiliates throughout Northern and Central California. Providing the homes people need while keeping the environment in balance, utilizing clean solutions for energy improves everyone’s quality of life. A PGE.com news release reports, “From the Mendocino Coast to Merced, PG&E’s Solar Habitat Program, in partnership with Habitat for Humanity, is making affordable housing and solar energy a reality.” When solar is applied as a renewable energy choice, we all benefit. Nowhere is it more regenerative than when solar finds a way into neighborhoods that have been “historically underserved and overlooked,” as PG&E highlights. “This commitment to clean energy and affordability is at the heart of our partnership with Habitat for Humanity,” said PG&E Corporation Senior Vice President, External Affairs and Public Policy, Helen Burt. Leading all other utility companies in the country, PG&E connects a new solar customer every 7 minutes. As well as working with previously ignored neighborhoods, the company is setting a standard to support predictions that the shift to solar energy is at hand. This recent good news and support is following a previous 11 years of support from PG&E’s Solar Habitat Program. PG&E continues: “Thanks to our partnership with PG&E and the Solar Habitat Program, Habitat homeowners spend less on electricity, and that helps us keep the overall cost of homeownership low. This is a critical piece of the overall affordability of Habitat homes,” said Kris Leja, Interim CEO of Habitat for Humanity Greater San Francisco, a nonprofit affordable-housing developer whose innovative model offers homeownership opportunities to Bay Area residents. The PG&E Solar Habitat Program lowers the electricity bill of an average household by $500 per year. Each solar panel generates nearly 300 kilowatt-hours of clean, renewable energy from sunlight per month, avoiding the release of more than 132,000 pounds of carbon dioxide to the atmosphere over the 30-year life of the system. In total, Habitat families will save $10.5 million in energy costs through this partnership. In addition to funding the Solar Habitat Program, PG&E employees have provided more than 12,000 volunteer hours with Habitat for Humanity through the years. Solar Partners With Habitat For Humanity For Veterans   Drive an electric car? Complete one of our short surveys for our next electric car report.   Keep up to date with all the hottest cleantech news by subscribing to our (free) cleantech newsletter, or keep an eye on sector-specific news by getting our (also free) solar energy newsletter, electric vehicle newsletter, or wind energy newsletter.  

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