ILLINOIS NATURE PRESERVES COMMISSION AGENDA

Minutes of the 186th MEETING

Nauvoo Family Inn and Suites
Nauvoo, Illinois

May 3, 2005
10:00 A.M.

*Documentary Material Enclosed


Item 1: Call to Order, Roll Call, and Introduction of Attendees


Item 2:* Adoption of Agenda


Item 3:* Approval of Minutes of the 185th Meeting, February 1, 2005


Item 4: 2005 Meeting Schedule

2 August, 9:00 a.m. - Morton Arboretum, Lisle
18 October, 10:00 a.m. - Pere Marquette Lodge, Grafton


Item 5: INPC Staff Report

REPORT
Don McFall, Randy Heidorn, and John Nelson
Nature Preserves Commission


Item 6: IDNR Staff Report

REPORT
Todd Strole
IDNR, Office of Resource Conservation


Item 7: Endangered Species Protection Board Staff Report

REPORT
Randy Nyboer
Endangered Species Protection Board Manager

Item 8:* Kankakee Co. - Addition to Sweet Fern Savanna Land and Water Reserve - Registration

REPORT ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Kim Roman Registration Approval
Nature Preserves Commission

Sweet Fern Savanna Land and Water Reserve, a 65-acre natural area located in Kankakee County, is owned and managed by Dr. Marianne Hahn. The site is recognized on the Illinois Natural Areas Inventory (INAI #1581) for its high quality natural communities including dry-mesic sand savanna, sand flatwoods, sand forest, and dry sand prairie, and also for the habitat it provides for twelve state endangered or threatened plants and the state threatened regal fritillary butterfly (Speyeria idalia). Since its registration as a Land and Water Reserve in August of 2002, Dr. Hahn has been purchasing lots adjacent to Sweet Fern Savanna as they have become available to help complete preserve design. Ten individual tracts totaling over 27 acres are proposed to be added to the Sweet Fern Savanna Land and Water Reserve, bringing the total protected acreage of this site to 90.


Item 9:* Champaign Co. - Barnhart Prairie Restoration Nature Preserve - Dedication

REPORT ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Mary Kay Solecki Preliminary Approval of Dedication
Nature Preserves Commission

The Barnhart Family proposes to dedicate 80 acres of the Barnhart Prairie Restoration as an Illinois Nature Preserve. Barnhart Prairie Restoration is a prairie reconstruction located about 2 miles south of Urbana in Champaign County that is owned by 5 brothers and sisters of the Barnhart family – Amber, Brett, Donald and Trent Barnhart, and Karen Bush. Donald Barnhart and his father, Harry, began this prairie reconstruction in 1987 on 5.5 acres. The prairie has expanded over the years and encompasses about 100 acres in total. Of the100 acres, 80 acres of the restoration is in a conservation easement purchased with funding from the Illinois Department of Natural Resources’ C2000 program and held by the Champaign County Soil and Water Conservation District. This 80-acre parcel is proposed for dedication as an Illinois nature preserve. The site is recognized on the Illinois Natural Areas Inventory (INAI #1717). The prairie harbors numerous types of native plants and animals, with the greatest assortment of conservative plants found on the oldest restorations that came into existence 16-18 years ago. A breeding population of the state-threatened Franklin’s ground squirrel (Spermophilus franklinii) occurs here. Barnhart Prairie Restoration is recognized by the Illinois Natural Areas Inventory as habitat for Franklin’s ground squirrel.


Item 10:* Kankakee Co. - Pembroke Savanna Nature Preserve - Dedication

REPORT ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Kim Roman Preliminary Approval of Dedication
Nature Preserves Commission

The Illinois Chapter of The Nature Conservancy (TNC) proposes to dedicate 65 acres of Pembroke Savanna as an Illinois Nature Preserve. The site is recognized on the Illinois Natural Areas Inventory (INAI # 54) for its high quality dry sand savanna. Pembroke Savanna harbors numerous uncommon flora and fauna including the state threatened regal fritillary butterfly (Speyeria idalia) and the regionally rare fame flower (Talinum rugospermum). It is currently considered the best example of dry sand savanna in all of Illinois. Additionally, this site is part of a high quality, large-scale ecosystem of national significance. The TNC wishes to provide the highest level of protection available in Illinois by dedicating it as a state Nature Preserve.



Item 11:* McHenry Co. - Addition to Gladstone Fen Nature Preserve - Dedication

REPORT ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Steven Byers Preliminary Approval of Dedication
Nature Preserves Commission

Lorna and Evan Gladstone seek preliminary approval for dedication of a 5.47-acre addition to Gladstone Fen Nature Preserve. Gladstone Fen Nature Preserve is located within the Morainal Section of the Northeastern Morainal Natural Division of Illinois in McHenry County, Illinois. Gladstone Fen Nature Preserve, and a small portion of the proposed addition, are part of the Gladstone Fen Illinois Natural Areas Inventory site (INAI # 1265). This site was recognized for extant high-quality graminoid fen, calcareous seep, and sedge meadow wetland communities. The 6.44 acre Gladstone Fen Nature Preserve was conferred final approval for dedication at the Commission’s 131st Meeting in May 1991 (Resolution No. 1084). In 1999, the McHenry County Conservation District acquired an additional 38 acres of this Illinois Natural Areas Inventory Site. That acquisition, together with the amount of land formally protected by the Gladstone family (with this proposal 11.9 acres), brings the total amount of land protected at this site to 49.9 acres. Dedication of the proposed addition will protect the surface hydrology of the existing Gladstone Fen Nature Preserve, provide for expanded restoration efforts along a stream course that drains the INAI site, and protect surviving remnants of sedge meadow and mesic prairie. Dedication of this tract by Lorna and Evan Gladstone will serve as a model, in much the same way as the original dedication of Gladstone Fen Nature Preserve by Lee and Gertrude Gladstone, for further protection and stewardship efforts within this portion of the Boone Creek watershed.


Item 12:* Jackson Co. - Lovets Pond Nature Preserve - Dedication

REPORT ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Judy Faulkner-Dempsey Final Approval of Dedication
Nature Preserves Commission

The Illinois Department of Natural Resources seeks final approval for dedication of 90 acres of Lovets Pond INAI site #1175 as an Illinois Nature Preserve. The Lovets Pond INAI site is located in the Southern Section of the Lower Mississippi River Bottomlands Natural Division. Lovets Pond is a wetland ecosystem of 150 acres 15 miles east of Murphysboro, IL. The site is characterized by six natural communities, including pond, shrub swamp, swamp, marsh, floodplain forest, and successional field. The communities provide habitat for aquatic and semi-aquatic organisms, 328 taxa of vascular flora, four endangered and two threatened animal species. The natural character of Lovets Pond is similar to the earliest known presettlement description of the land. The pond, shrub swamp, swamp, and marsh are high natural quality and are rare in the natural division. Only two other significant natural ponds remain in this natural division.


Item 13:* Marshall Co. - Addition to Hopewell Hill Prairies Nature Preserve - Dedication

REPORT ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Tom Lerczak Final Approval of Dedication
Nature Preserves Commission

Maury Brucker and Emiko Yang are seeking final approval of a 0.5-acre addition to Hopewell Hill Prairies Nature Preserve, which is an 8.3-acre site included within the 78-acre Hopewell Estates Hill Prairies Natural Area (INAI #321) in the village of Hopewell. At the 185th INPC meeting, the Commission granted preliminary approval for this nature preserve addition as Resolution #1816. The currently dedicated nature preserve, owned by Mr. Brucker and Ms. Yang, contains a grade A glacial drift hill prairie on lot #117 and grade B hill prairie on lot #139. The proposed nature preserve addition on lot #138 supports woodland communities representative of the Grand Prairie Section of the Grand Prairie Natural Division, which includes grade C woodland with white oak (Quercus alba), mockernut hickory (Carya tomentosa), red oak (Q. rubra), and sugar maple (Acer saccharum) in the canopy and hazelnut (Corylus americana), black haw (Viburnum prunifolium), and bitternut hickory (Carya cordiformis) present in the shrub layer. French grass (Orbexilum onobrychis) is present within the ground flora in more open areas. Dedication of the proposed addition will increase the area of the nature preserve to 8.8 acres.

Item 14:* McHenry Co. - Boloria Fen and Sedge Meadow Nature Preserve - Dedication

REPORT ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Steven Byers Final Approval of Dedication
Nature Preserves Commission

The Boone Creek Watershed Alliance seeks final approval for dedication of a 36-acre tract as
the Boloria Fen and Sedge Meadow Nature Preserve. Boloria Fen and Sedge Meadow is located in the Morainal Section of the Northeastern Morainal Natural Division in McHenry County, Illinois and is named in recognition of an abundance of Silver-bordered fritillary (Boloria selene). This site was recently included on the Illinois Natural Areas Inventory (INAI # 1705) for high-quality graminoid fen and sedge meadow communities. Dry-mesic forest dominates the balance of the site. Boloria Fen and Sedge Meadow was acquired by the Boone Creek Watershed Alliance with the financial assistance of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources C2000 program and the landowner. The Commission conferred preliminary approval for dedication at the Commission’s 185th Meeting in February 2005 (Resolution No.1817).

Item 15:* McHenry Co. - Dolly Kuetemeyer Woodlands Addition of Nature Preserve Buffer to Boone Creek Fen Nature Preserve - Dedication

REPORT ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Steven Byers Final Approval for Dedication
Nature Preserves Commission

Mr. Warren Kuetemeyer requests final approval for dedication of the 6.95-acre Dolly Kuetemeyer Woodlands as Nature Preserve Buffer to Boone Creek Fen Nature Preserve. The site is located in McHenry County, Illinois within the Morainal Section of the Northeastern Morainal Natural Division of Illinois. The proposed addition honors the memory of Mr. Kuetemeyer’s late wife, Dolly. This tract received preliminary approval for dedication at the Commission’s 180th Meeting in September 2003 (Resolution No. 1740). The tract has ecological significance because its is located adjacent to the Boone Creek Fen and Seep (Illinois Natural Areas Inventory INAI # 1015). It serves as an important groundwater recharge zone for this INAI site and supports remnants of mature dry-mesic forest. Dedication of the Dolly Kuetemeyer Woodlands as nature preserve buffer will increase the amount of land formally protected as nature preserve or nature preserve buffer by landowners within this INAI site from 88.15 to 95.1 acres.

Item 16:* Cook Co. - Busse Woods Nature Preserve, Spillway Modification at Busse Woods Reservoir

REPORT ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
John Nelson None
Nature Preserves Commission
John Steffen
DuPage County Department of Devolvement and Environmental Concerns

The DuPage County Department of Development and Environmental Concerns proposes to modify the principal spillway of the Busse Woods Reservoir to help alleviate downstream flooding of Salt Creek during heavy rain events. Busse Woods Nature Preserve is located 8,500 feet upstream of the principal spillway. The Nature Preserve contains an oak flatwoods community and an ephemeral wetland that are sensitive to changes in groundwater and surface hydrology. While the project is not within the boundary of the Nature Preserve, INPC project approval is required as part of an inter-governmental agreement between DuPage County and the landowner, the Cook County Forest Preserve District. The petitioner will give a project update of the proposal in order to provide the Commissioners an early opportunity for input and guidance. The petitioner plans to return with a follow-up presentation at the August meeting at which time project approval will be requested.

Item 17: Natural Areas Acquisition Fund Fiscal Year 2006 Stewardship Proposals

REPORT ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Randy Heidorn Approval of project list
Nature Preserves Commission
Bob Szafoni
IDNR Division of Habitat Resources

Item 18: Designing and Establishing Buffers Around Nature Preserves and Land and Water Reserves

REPORT ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Don McFall None
John Nelson
Tom Lerczak
Angella Moorehouse
Nature Preserves Commission

Nature Preserves and Land and Water Reserves typically include a highly significant "core" area and surrounding lands of lesser quality that buffer the significant feature from incompatible adjacent land uses. Incompatible adjacent land uses can damage or destroy the features for which a preserve or reserve was established. Nature Preserve are dedicated in perpetuity, as are most of the Land and Water Reserves, and assuring the long term viability of these areas is a critical responsibility of the Nature Preserves Commission. NPC staff use the principles of preserve design as they work with landowners, on a voluntary basis, to establish the boundaries of new natutr preserves and land and Water Reserves and propose additions to existing preserves and reserves.


Item 19: Public Comment Period (3 minutes per person)

Item 20: Other Business


Item 21: Adjournment


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