Western Area Power Administration Biological Services Blanket Purchase Agreement
EcoPlan was awarded a Blanket Purchase Agreement, an on-call-type environmental services contract, by Western in 2011. EcoPlan has been providing biological services to Western regularly since 2008—on more than 60 tasks in Arizona, Nevada, and California. Work under these tasks includes tortoise monitoring and tortoise training, endangered plant surveys, migratory bird surveys, field documentation and reports, and biological assessments. This work is conducted in support of new installations and regular maintenance activities of existing facilities
SRP On-call Environmental Consulting Services
EcoPlan was awarded on-call environmental services contracts by SRP in 2004, 2009, and 2012. Since that time, EcoPlan has taken on 25 tasks. EcoPlan has successfully met aggressive scheduling for several tasks and has completed assignments in coordination with various agencies, including the Arizona State Land Department, the Bureau of Land Management, Bureau of Reclamation, the Flood Control District of Maricopa County, the Tonto National Forest, and US Army Corps of Engineers. Over the past 12 years, assignments have included collection of sediment, soil, and water samples at Lake Powell; surveys and nest monitoring of the endangered Southwestern willow flycatcher and threatened yellow-billed cuckoo along the Verde, San Pedro, and Gila rivers; Mexican spotted owls surveys in north-central Arizona; quagga mussel field sampling and water quality measurements at Roosevelt, Apache, Canyon, Saguaro, and Bartlett reservoirs; and breeding bird surveys near Springerville and along the Gila River near Fort Thomas, Arizona.
Bureau of Reclamation Multi-Species Conservation Program Research Project
EcoPlan was contracted by the Bureau of Reclamation to research and describe the range of soil hydrologic conditions that exist within suitable breeding habitat on the Lower Colorado River system used by the Southwestern willow flycatcher and the yellow-billed cuckoo. The goal of this research was to inform efforts to create breeding habitat for these key species at existing and future restoration sites included in the Lower Colorado River Multiple Species Conservation Program. Data were collected over two field seasons on soil, ground and surface water, litter, and microclimatic variables. EcoPlan presented the results of the study at the Colorado River Terrestrial and Riparian Meeting in January 2012.
US 93, Hoover Dam to Milepost 17
The Federal Highway Administration and Arizona Department of Transportation sponsored this project to widen a 15-mile-long segment of US 93 in Lake Mead National Recreation Area. Cooperating agencies included the National Park Service, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the Bureau of Land Management, and the Arizona Game and Fish Department. EcoPlan served on the interdisciplinary project team from the initial feasibility phase through final design and construction. During project design, EcoPlan investigated movement patterns and typical travel routes of bighorn sheep within the project limits. The investigation involved track plots and direct observations of sheep and surrounding terrain to determine the common travel routes along and across the roadway. The goal of the surveys was to assist in determining the best-fit locations for multiple sheep and wildlife (bridge) crossings. Today, mounted video cameras record the movement of bighorn sheep across these bridges—a major project success. The project was a recipient of the National Association of Environmental Professionals’ 2012 National Environmental Excellence Award in the conservation category.
Arizona Game and Fish Department Arizona Game and Fish Department Sonoran Desert Tortoise Study
In 1987–1988, the Bureau of Land Managementinitiated a standardized monitoring program for the Sonoran population of the desert tortoise that consisted of six permanent long-term monitoring plots. The Arizona Game and Fish Department has coordinated this program along with the Bureau of Land Management, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and the National Park Service since 1990. The program currently consists of 25 permanent long-term monitoring plots located throughout much of the range of the Sonoran desert tortoise. In 2010, the Arizona Game and Fish Department initiated a monitoring program using site occupancy methods designed to detect changes in overall tortoise distribution. EcoPlan was contracted by Arizona Game and Fish Department to complete surveys of 43 (3-hectare) occupancy sites in the Granite Wash Mountains, La Paz County, Arizona. Tortoise surveys were completed in 2010 and 2011 and data were subsequently analyzed and described in a study report.