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WestLand was hired as the third-party independent research firm for a Research Consortium consisting of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Golden Queen Mining Company LLC, and the Center for Biological Diversity. The research focused on a little-known desert snail in the Mojave Desert. WestLand’s experience with Endangered Species Act issues and desert land snails presented a unique opportunity to further our understanding of taxa of particularly ecological interest as well as serve the needs of a diverse stakeholder group in navigating the processes of the Endangered Species Act.
WestLand developed a research sampling program, survey protocols, and statistical modeling approach that addressed key unknown questions regarding the distribution and habitat variables associated with the snail. Survey efforts, including the participation of dozens of volunteers, increased the known locations of the snail by an order of magnitude and provided evidence that the habitat for the snail was considerably more broad than previously reported.
These findings were the focus of the USFWS’ Species Status Assessment and 12-month finding to determine whether or not the species required listing under the Endangered Species Act. WestLand’s research was also used to complete a volunteer Conservation Plan aimed at long0term protection of the snail. Research on the snail by WestLand has continued with other partners and aims to further our understanding of the evolutionary relationships desert snails in the Mojave desert and the habitat requirements of the species.
Without Dr. Ceresale, Mr. Tinseth, Mr. Wallace, and Mr. Traphagen, we certainly would not have been able to accomplish the amount of robust surveys in the short amount of time allotted to us via the topographic, climatic, and precipitation limitations.
Joel E. (jeep) Pagel, Ph.D.
WestLand is here to help. Experience is only a click away. Or, call your experts at WestLand, (520) 206-9585.
WestLand’s experience with Endangered Species Act issues and desert land snails presented a unique opportunity to further our understanding of taxa of particularly ecological interest as well as serve the needs of a diverse stakeholder group in navigating the processes of the Endangered Species Act.
|Project||Mohave Shoulderband Snail Survey|