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Tuesday, January 30 • 10:40am - 11:00am
UPLAND GAME BIRDS & POLLINATORS: Modeling Pollinator Conservation Targets Within Rights-of-Way

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AUTHORS. Dan Salas, Cardno; Johanna Sievewright, American Transmission Company

ABSTRACT. Many pollinators are in serious decline in the United States and worldwide (IPBES 2016). As pollinator declines become acknowledged as a conservation concern, public and private entities are equally considering their role in pollinator conservation. American Transmission Company (ATC) has initiated its own pollinator protection program to address these concerns along the approximate 10,000 miles of rights-of-way they operate. As part of this program, ATC worked with Cardno to define priorities for landscape restoration and conservation across ATC’s transmission footprint. In doing so, ATC is adding to the conservation science of pollinator conservation by developing a better understanding, through models and field studies, of how landscape structure influences pollinators. This need for modelling and continued study is identified as a critical need for ecosystem service management (Kremen et al. 2007 as cited by Lonsdorf et al. 2009). To help ATC achieve their goals, Cardno developed the Pollinator Opportunities Within Rights-of-Way (POWR) model to help identify priority areas for pollinator habitat restoration and conservation as a tool to inform future management decisions related to pollinators. The focus of this effort was twofold: 1) identify and prioritize which areas of rights-of-way can be restored to create a landscape connection to other suitable habitat, and 2) which segments already support important habitat and should therefore be maintained or enhanced. The findings of this landscape conservation analysis yielded spatial priorities for conservation opportunities, helped define the roles of various transmission work activities in supporting pollinator habitat restoration, and allowed for targeted conservation actions.

Tuesday January 30, 2018 10:40am - 11:00am CST