ISTM Habitat Monitoring Component

Project Description

Throughout the Pacific Northwest there is an increasing demand for comprehensive information on the status and trend of aquatic ecosystems. At the same time, economic realities mean that the entities charged with obtaining this information are expected to do more with less. Currently, there are at least five different programs proposed or underway for monitoring of aquatic resources in the Pacific Northwest. Often there is significant overlap in questions being addressed, methodology, and spatial domains of inference of these habitat monitoring programs. Despite this overlap, it is often difficult to share data among habitat monitoring entities because of potentially rectifiable differences in study designs. The premise of PNAMP’s Integrated Status and Trend Monitoring (ISTM) project is that better coordination among the habitat monitoring programs will lead to more efficient and effective aquatic resource monitoring throughout the region. For this to occur, monitoring entities need to compare goals, objectives, protocols, and inference domains. By identifying commonalities and rectifiable differences, it will be possible to develop more coordinated, effective, and efficient multi-agency aquatic monitoring programs for the Pacific Northwest.

The goal of the Integrated Status and Trend Monitoring (ISTM) project is to develop recommendations for regional aquatic ecosystem monitoring entities on ways to design and implement more coordinated, efficient, and effective aquatic ecosystem monitoring. To do this, the ISTM project is divided into components to address fish monitoring, habitat monitoring, and to develop a regional master sample tracking tool. The Fish component is working on recommendations for salmon and steelhead monitoring; the Habitat component is working on recommendations for aquatic ecosystem monitoring.

Consistent with the overall objectives for the ISTM project, the objectives of the Habitat component are:
1. Identify & prioritize decisions, questions, and objectives
2. Review existing programs and designs and identify gaps
3. Identify monitoring designs, sampling frames, protocols, and analytical tools that facilitate more coordinated, efficient, and effective monitoring programs
4. Use trade-off analyses to develop recommendations for monitoring
5. Recommend implementation and reporting mechanisms

Project Team

The project team includes: Karen Adams (LCFRB), Kara Anlauf-Dunn (ODFW), Shannon Hubler (ODEQ), Chris Jordan (NOAA/CHaMP), Glenn Merritt (WA Ecology), Stephanie Miller (BLM/AREMP), and Jennifer O'Neal (TetraTech/SRFB). Project management is provided by Amy Puls (PNAMP/USGS). This project is also supported through in-kind contributions of the monitoring entities in the Lower Columbia River ESU.

Highlights

September Meeting to Share ISTM Report and Discuss Habitat Data Sharing

August 25, 2014 - 12:14pm

In the summer of 2014, PNAMP, with help from regional partners, finalized the ISTM Habitat Objectives 1&2 Report. This report summarizes work to compare the goals, objectives, protocols, and inference domains of habitat status and trends monitoring programs in the Lower Columbia ESU. In addition to identifying the measurements and metrics that seven Lower Columbia monitoring programs had in common, an effort was made to determine the “shareability” of the most commonly calculated site-level metrics. For the full results, see the final report here: http://www.pnamp.org/document/4769

The ISTM Habitat work is already being used by other ongoing efforts. The PNAMP Habitat Data Sharing project (http://www.pnamp.org/project/3266) will use the report as a stepping off point to facilitate a series of discussions on what metrics to share and how to share them. This series will be kicked off on September 4, 2014 at PNAMP’s Habitat Data Sharing Meeting. The meeting agenda and supporting documents can be found at: : http://www.pnamp.org/event/4796. Please contact Amy Puls (apuls@usgs.gov) with any questions.

Lower Columbia Habitat Status and Trends Monitoring (HSTM) Project Page

February 28, 2014 - 3:23pm

The Lower Columbia Habitat Status and Trends Monitoring (HSTM) Project now has it's own project page. Check it out here: www.pnamp.org/project/4585

Additional Funding for the Lower Columbia Habitat Status and Trends Monitoring Project

January 23, 2014 - 2:56pm

In October of 2012, the Lower Columbia Fish Recovery Board (LCFRB) together with the City of Longview was awarded a Grant of Regional or Statewide Significance (GRSS) from Washington Ecology to build on progress made in the Habitat ISTM project, and combine efforts with municipal stormwater managers in Southwest Washington to develop an integrated status and trends monitoring design for the Lower Columbia region. Tetra Tech, Sitka Technology Group, and Don Stevens were subcontracted to provide technical and statistical assistance. Contractors worked with the stormwater permittees in SW Washington to identify priority management questions and metrics, merged that information together with that of the ISTM Habitat partners, and used the combined information to develop several monitoring scenarios for a trade-off analysis. The scenarios were reviewed with participants and final recommendations were developed. Throughout the project, feedback was gathered from monitoring managers, practitioners, and stakeholders during four workshops and two teleconference work sessions. Three reports summarize the work. The reports, as well as the materials from the workshops, can be found at the LCFRB website (http://www.lcfrb.gen.wa.us/HSTM%20page.htm).

In the fall of 2013, PNAMP again partnered with the LCFRB and the City of Longview to submit a WA Ecology GRSS proposal to continue the work to develop an integrated status and trends monitoring design for the Lower Columbia region. The short timeline of the last grant left little time to vet the recommendations widely. There were also many unresolved questions that need further discussion before the recommended design could be implemented. We are happy to announce that the proposal was funded and work will begin in early 2014.

Lower Columbia Habitat Status and Trends Monitoring Project

May 21, 2013 - 11:32am

The Lower Columbia Habitat Status and Trends Monitoring Project (funded by the Washington Department of Ecology, with project management by Tetra Tech, and oversight by the LCFRB and PNAMP) builds on the ongoing PNAMP ISTM project by integrating the monitoring priorities and existing programs of ISTM partners with receiving water quality monitoring programs implemented by municipal stormwater National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permittees in southwest Washington. Phase one of the project identified priority management questions and metrics for the stormwater permittees, merged that information together with that of the ISTM partners, and used the combined information to develop several monitoring scenarios for the trade-off analysis. Three workshops have been held to date to get monitoring managers, practitioners, and stakeholders input on the identified priorities and scenarios. The final workshop (see http://www.pnamp.org/event/4245), to vet the proposed monitoring design recommendations and discuss next steps, will be held May 22. Materials from past workshops can be found at: http://www.lcfrb.gen.wa.us/HSTM%20page.htm

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