ILLINOIS NATURE PRESERVES COMMISSION AGENDA
ONE HUNDRED EIGHTY EIGHTH MEETING

Pere Marquette Lodge & Conference Center
Grafton, Illinois

October 18, 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 187th Meeting, August 2, 2005

Item 4: Meeting Schedule

7 February, 10:00 a.m. - Illinois Department of Natural Resources, Springfield
2 May, 10:00 a.m. - Ballard Nature Center, Altamont
1 August, 10:00 a.m. - McHenry County Conservation District, Woodstock
24 October, 10:00 a.m. - Nature Center, Bourbonnais Park District

Item 5: INPC Staff Report

REPORT
Randy Heidorn and John Nelson
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 6: IDNR Staff Report

REPORT
Glen Kruse
IDNR, Office of Resource Conservation

Item 7: Endangered Species Protection Board Staff Report

REPORT
Randy Nyboer
Endangered Species Protection Board Manager

Item 8: Report on Shawnee National Forest Plan

REPORT
Hurston Nicholas
Forest Supervisor, Shawnee National Forest
US Forest Service



Item 9:* Calhoun Co. – Two Branch Peace Prairie Land and Water Reserve, Registration

The proposed Two Branch Peace Prairie Land and Water Reserve, owned by Eberhard, Anita, Kurt, and Ron Pfitzner and Tina Chandler is an 11.1-acre site. The proposed land and water reserve includes all of the 8-acre Two Branch Hollow Hill Prairie Illinois Natural Areas Inventory site (INAI #297). The proposed land and water reserve contains grade A loess hill prairie, grade A limestone cliff community, and grade C dry and mesic upland forest, grade C wet bottomland forest and a perennial stream, representative of the Driftless Section of the Middle Mississippi Boarder Natural Division. This will be the first land and water reserve for Calhoun County.
REPORT ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Debbie Newman Registration Approval
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 10:* Jersey Co. – McAdams Peak Hill Prairie Land and Water Reserve, Registration

The proposed McAdams Peak Hill Prairie Land and Water Reserve, a 250-acre site, is located in Jersey County in the Driftless Section of the Middle Mississippi Border Natural Division. The area is significant due to the presence of a complex of high quality loess hill prairies. The site is owned and managed by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources and is situated within Pere Marquette State Park near Grafton. The area, which overlooks the Illinois River, contains an exceptional limestone cliff community and adjoins a forested hollow (INAI #602) that is utilized heavily by wintering bald eagles (Haliaeetus leucocephalus).

REPORT ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Judy Faulkner Dempsey Registration Approval
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 11:* Logan Co. – North Elkhart Hill Grove Land and Water Reserve, Registration

The 36.04-acre North Elkhart Hill Grove, owned by Gillette M. Ransom and James C. Ransom, contains approximately 15 acres of mesic old-growth forest and approximately 21 acres of forest that have been managed for a continuing, but limited, timber harvest. The forests at North Elkhart Hill Grove are representative of the Springfield Section of the Grand Prairie Natural Division and are recognized as part of the Elkhart Hill Natural Area (INAI #0178), which is the only prairie grove in Illinois located on a glacial kame (from the Illinoisan glacial period). Sugar maple (Acer saccharum), blue ash (Fraxinus quadrangulata), and bur oak (Quercus macrocarpa) are important canopy species. Other common species in smaller diameter classes include slippery elm (Ulmus rubra), American elm (Ulmus americana) and hackberry (Celtis occidentalis). Wood nettle (Laportea canadensis) is a dominant herbaceous species. The 15-acre old-growth area forms the core of the proposed land and water reserve and will remain protected from timber harvest as a "no-cut" area. Timber harvest, following an INPC-approved management plan, will be allowed on remaining acres. Hiking, horseback riding, snowmobiling, and cross-country skiing will be restricted to established trails. Hunting and mushroom collecting will be allowed with landowner permission.

REPORT ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Tom Lerczak Registration Approval
Nature Preserves Commission
Item 12:* McHenry Co. – Maunk-Sook Sedge Meadow and Savanna Land and Water Reserve

John and Timmie Clemetsen wish to register the Maunk-Sook Sedge Meadow and Savanna as an Illinois land and water reserve. "Maunk-Sook" is a Potawatomi word meaning "Bigfoot." It was also the name given to a local Chief because of the tracks he left in the snow with snowshoes. The proposed 54.58-acre land and water reserve is part of a 66.7-acre tract of land owned by the Clemetsen’s that is located in the Morainal Section of the Northeastern Morainal Natural Division that was recently included on the INAI (#1706) as a Category V site. The criteria for this category includes restorations of natural communities or relocated populations of endangered or threatened species of animals or plants. The proposed land and water reserve has responded very positively to an aggressive management effort that has included removal of invasive or exotic species and controlled burns. The site includes restored sedge meadow and savanna natural communities that support 319 native plant species. Of the three state-listed plant species recorded from the site, white lady’s slipper (Cypripedium candidum), queen of the prairie (Filipendula rubra), and nodding trillium (Trillium cernuum macranthum), two populations of the queen of the prairie are located within the boundary of the proposed land and water reserve. The Clemetsen’s have previously executed both a forest management plan and a wildlife management plan prepared by staff of the IDNR. The proposed land and water reserve is subject to a pipeline right-of-way easement.

REPORT ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Steven Byers Registration Approval
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 13:* Monroe Co. – Columbia Quarry-White Rock Land and Water Reserve, Registration

The proposed Columbia Quarry-White Rock Land and Water Reserve, owned by Columbia Quarry Company, is a 475-acre site that includes 47 acres of the Monroe City Hill Prairie INAI site (#199) and approximately 50 acres of the Potato Hill INAI site (#200). The proposed land and water reserve contains a matrix of 7 acres of grade A loess hill prairie and 5 acres of grade B limestone glade intermingled with grade C dry and dry-mesic upland forest, representative of the Northern Section of the Ozark Natural Division . This matrix of habitats is home to several rare, threatened, and endangered plant and animal species, some of which are Ozark plateau or western plains species and have restricted ranges in Illinois. These include a state-endangered reptile, woolly buckthorn (Bumelia lanuginosa), the Missouri coneflower (Rudbeckia missouriensis) and state-threatened stickleaf (Mentzelia oligosperma). In addition, the proposed land and water reserve contains a large tract of forest providing habitat for forest-interior bird species. The site is adjacent to the Luella Schaefer Memorial Hill Prairies Land and Water Reserve and one-half mile south of the proposed Martha and Michelle Prairies Land and Water Reserve. The proposed land and water reserve is the fourteenth site in a 35-mile corridor of bluffs to receive some level of protection from the INPC. This corridor contains 4000 acres of INAI sites. Columbia Quarry-White Rock will contribute a significant tract of acreage to the landscape goals of protecting this bluff corridor. This site is being registered under a unique agreement for the site to be protected during the company’s ownership and with the provision to provide a Right of First Refusal for acquisition to the IDNR at the time the company decides to terminate the land and water reserve agreement.

REPORT ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Debbie Newman Registration Approval
Nature Preserves Commission
Item 14:* Monroe Co. – Martha and Michelle Prairie Land and Water Reserve, Registration

The proposed Martha and Michelle Prairies Land and Water Reserve, owned by Tim and Jennifer Schmidt, is a 20-acre site within the Potato Hill INAI site (#200) and contains approximately 3 acres of grade A loess hill prairie, 1 acre of wildlife food plots, and16 acres of grade C dry and dry-mesic upland forest, representative of the Northern Section of the Ozark Natural Division. The proposed land and water reserve contains two listed species, the state endangered woolly buckthorn (Bumelia lanuginosa) and a state-threatened reptile. The site is adjacent to the 134-acre Luella Schaefer Memorial Hill Prairie Land and Water Reserve, across the road from the 449-acre Salt Lick Point Land and Water Reserve, and one-half mile north of the 475-acre proposed Columbia Quarry-White Rock Land and Water Reserve. The proposed land and water reserve is the fifteenth site in a 35-mile corridor of bluffs to receive some level of protection from the INPC. This corridor contains 4000 acres of INAI sites.

REPORT ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Debbie Newman Registration Approval
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 15:* Piatt Co. – Monticello’s Sangamon River Land and Water Reserve, Registration

Monticello’s Sangamon River is a 153-acre natural area located along the Sangamon River in the City of Monticello in Piatt County. This natural area is owned by the City of Monticello and protects an approximately 0.7-mile segment of the Sangamon River, within the Grand Prairie Section of the Grand Prairie Natural Division. This river is recognized by the INAI as a biologically significant stream (#1449) with outstanding aquatic resources, especially fresh-water mussels, for the river’s entire length in Piatt and Champaign counties. The Sangamon River provides important habitat for a relatively high diversity of mussels including the state threatened slippershell (Alasmidonta viridis). There are over a dozen species of mussels recorded from this stretch of river. Freshwater mussels are considered to be the most endangered group of species in North America. Monticello’s Sangamon River also protects bottomland forest and upland forest that contributes to the high natural quality of the river by reducing runoff and sediments entering the river and by functioning as a buffer for the river. This site is within 5 miles of five protected natural areas along the river that, taken together, preserve over 5.7 miles of the Sangamon River and approximately 2,946 acres of forest and other natural land. The Clean Energy Community Foundation made protection of the site possible by providing a grant to the City of Monticello to acquire this site.

REPORT ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Mary Kay Solecki Registration Approval
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 16:* Will Co. – Addition to Rock Run Land and Water Reserve, Registration

The Forest Preserve District of Will County (FPDWC) currently owns or holds easement to several large tracts of land totaling over 974 acres within the Rock Run Greenway. The 231.5-acre tract known as the Rock Run Preserve, is the largest, high quality natural area within the larger greenway. The FPDWC registered 124.8 acres (the highest quality portion of the site) in 2003 as an Illinois land and water reserve and now wishes to add 41.8 acres as an addition to this site. Rock Run Land and Water Reserve is comprised primarily of marsh and sedge meadow communities, representative of the Morainal Section of the Northeastern Morainal Natural Division. The proposed addition is a continuation of these natural communities. Other significant features of the site include the state endangered northern corn salad (Valerianella umbilicata) and potential habitat for the state threatened Blanding’s turtle (Emydoidea blandingii) and sandhill crane (Grus canadensis), which are known from the Rock Run Land and Water Reserve. In addition, the wetlands on site provide reliable foraging habitat for the nearby Lake Renwick heron rookery, and may also provide nesting habitat for other rare, endangered, or threatened bird species.

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

Item 17:* Rock Island Co. – Josua Lindahl Hill Prairies Nature Preserve, Dedication

Augustana College proposes to dedicate 25 acres as nature preserve to be known as the Josua Lindahl Hill Prairies Nature Preserve in honor of the College’s first biology professor. The proposed dedication is part of the field station known as the Collinson Ecological Preserve. The site is located just outside the city limits of Milan and within two miles of the City of Rock Island. The area proposed for dedication includes the entire Milan South Geological INAI site (#490), recognized for having an outstanding natural exposure of Devonian Age limestone and 0.6 acres of grade B loess hill prairie, representative of the Glaciated Section of the Middle Mississippi Border Natural Division, overlooking the bluff of Mill Creek. Once dedicated, Josua Lindahl Hill Prairies Nature Preserve would be the first privately owned nature preserve in Rock Island County and the only loess hill prairie under nature preserve protection along the Mississippi River Bluffs between Grubb Hollow Nature Preserve in Pike County to Sentinel Nature Preserve in Carroll County, a distance of approximately 150 miles.
REPORT ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Angella Moorehouse Preliminary Approval for Dedication
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 18:* Fulton Co. – Kedzior Woods Addition to Harper-Rector Woods Nature Preserve, Dedication

Mr. Ken Kedzior proposed to dedicate an approximately 50-acre addition, known as Kedzior Woodlands, to Harper-Rector Woods Nature Preserve. The proposed addition is located within the Western Forest-Prairie Natural Division and consists of three tracts within a 302.54-acre site that also includes the 120-acre Kedzior Woodlands Land and Water Reserve. Native plant communities on Mr. Kedzior’s land support species that are characteristic of the Western Forest-Prairie Natural Division. The northwestern corner of Tract 1 (approximately 20 acres) is adjacent to Harper-Rector Woods Nature Preserve. Most of the proposed nature preserve addition consists of second-growth mesic to dry-mesic upland oak-hickory (Quercus-Carya) forest within a steep-sided ravine system, part of which drains into the southwestern corner of Harper-Rector Woods Nature Preserve and then into Spoon River. Tract 2 (approximately 8 acres of early successional woods) is adjacent to and north of State Route 95. Tract 3 of the proposed nature preserve addition (21.94 acres) is separated from the other two proposed nature preserve tracts by State Route 95. Tract 3 supports early successional woodland plus a 2-3-acre open woodland or savanna community that includes hazelnut (Corylus americana), New Jersey tea (Ceanothus americanus), prairie willow (Salix humilis), melic grass (Melica nitens), and lead plant (Amorpha canescens). This remnant natural community has a good potential for recovery with renewed fire management. Mr. Kedzior wishes to add the three Kedzior Woodlands tracts to Harper-Rector Woods Nature Preserve in order to ensure the protection of the forest and savanna/open woodland communities present on the site, to increase the diversity of community types protected as dedicated Illinois Nature Preserve at the Harper-Rector Woods Nature Preserve, to enhance the protection of the high quality forest and the Spoon River at Harper-Rector Woods Nature Preserve; and to ensure that a proper restoration management program will maintain natural ecosystem dynamics and processes that are capable of perpetuating natural communities into the future. The Commission conferred preliminary approval for dedication at the Commission’s 183rd Meeting in August, 2004 (Resolution #1785). The Illinois Department of Transportation, at the 184th Meeting, expressed concern over the dedication of this addition because of a potential conflict with a planned expansion of Il. Rt 95 (FA407). The Commission directed staff to reassess the natural quality of each of the parcels and make further recommendations to the Commission prior to final approval.

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

Item 19:* Lake Co. – Old Mill Flatwoods Addition of Nature Preserve Buffer to Florsheim Park Nature Preserve, Dedication

Old Mill Road Associates, LLC, an affiliate of Kenneth James Builders, LLC, request final approval for dedication of the 31-acre Old Mill Flatwoods as a nature preserve buffer addition to Florsheim Park Nature Preserve. The proposed addition is part of a 55-acre tract recently annexed into the Village of Lincolnshire that provides for development of the Old Mill Woods subdivision. The proposed Old Mill Flatwoods addition is located adjacent to Florsheim Park within the Northeastern Morainal Natural Division in Lake County. Florsheim Park Nature Preserve was included on the INAI (#1500) for sedge meadow, mesic prairie, dry-mesic forest and northern flatwoods communities that support four state-listed plant species, of which the Eastern prairie fringed orchid (Plantantherea leucophaea) is also federally listed. The dry-mesic forest and northern flatwoods natural communities extend into the proposed addition. This proposal provides for siting, construction, and operation of a storm water detention basin designed to provide water quality benefits to the wetlands within the northern flatwoods and nearby West Fork of the North Branch of the Chicago River. Protection of the natural resources at this location represents a real success story starting with the 40-acre Florsheim Park being bequeathed to the Village of Lincolnshire. This 40-acre site received final approval for dedication at the Commission’s 151st Meeting in May, 1996 (Resolution #1315). Then, in 1999, the Village acquired North Park, and the Commission conferred final approval for dedication of a 38-acre addition to Florsheim Park Nature Preserve at its 171st Meeting in May, 2001 (Resolution #1570). This 31-acre addition of nature preserve buffer will increase the amount of land formally protected at Florsheim Park Nature Preserve from 78 acres to 109 acres. The Commission conferred preliminary approval for dedication at the Commission’s 187th Meeting in August, 2005 (Resolution #1835).

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

Item 20:* St. Clair Co. – Sinking Creek Nature Preserve, Dedication

John and Sarah Lloyd propose to dedicate 4.5 acres known as the Sinking Creek Nature Preserve. The proposed nature preserve is part of the Stemler Karst INAI site (#835) and is important because it protects numerous sinkholes within the Stemler Cave recharge area, an intermittent disappearing or "sinking" stream, and a small passage of cave disconnected from the main cave. The mostly forested site is located upstream of the main cave stream, adding to its importance in buffering the cave’s aquatic and terrestrial communities. Stemler Cave was recognized by the INAI for its high-quality terrestrial and aquatic cave communities representative of the Northern Section of the Ozark Natural Division. The cave has particular importance because it was a collection site for the state and federally endangered Illinois cave amphipod (Gammarus acherondytes). The Stemler Karst, including the proposed nature preserve, is located in the unique "Sinkhole Plain" of southwestern Illinois and was cited by the INAI as being an "outstanding example of karst topography." The Commission conferred preliminary approval for dedication at the Commission’s 181st Meeting in February, 2004 (Resolution #1763).

REPORT ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Debbie Newman Final Approval for Dedication
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 21*: Cook Co. – Busse Woods Nature Preserve - Spillway Modification at Busse Woods Reservoir

The DuPage County Department of Development and Environmental Concerns (DuPage County) proposes to modify the principal spillway of the Busse Woods Reservoir to help alleviate downstream flooding of Salt Creek during unusually heavy rain events. Mr. John Steffen, representing DuPage County, first addressed the INPC at the May 4, 2004 meeting, and he subsequently provided project status reports to Commissioners at the May 3, 2005 and August 2, 2005 meeting. At the 187th meeting in August, representatives of Applied Ecological Services (AAES) and Christopher B. Burke Engineering presented a new report and made specific recommendations to minimize potential negative impacts to the nature preserve. Action on this agenda item was postponed by the Commission until the 188th meeting. Prior to taking final action on this proposal, DuPage County agreed to provide INPC staff with a final operating plan and decision matrix for review. The plan and decision matrix would be consistent with the recommendations of the Applied Ecological Services report. Commissioners also requested that the Inter-Governmental Agreement between DuPage County, the Forest Preserve District of Cook County and the IDNR be amended to include the AES recommendations and language specific to the operational plan and decision matrix.

REPORT ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
John Nelson Approval of Spillway Modification
Nature Preserves Commission
John Steffen
DuPage County Department of Development and Environmental Concerns

Item 22: Hancock Co. – Cecil White Prairie Land and Water Reserve - Proposal to use a Portion of the Land and Water Reserve for Road Purposes

Cecil White Prairie Land and Water Reserve, registered in October, 2002, is a 33-acre tract in eastern Hancock County donated to IDNR by Cecil and Eleanor White in 1998. The donation included a significant portion of the 62-acre Cecil White Prairie INAI site (#155) recognized for having one acre of high quality loess hill prairie. The qualifying features of this site are a high quality loess hill prairie community and significant archeological resources. The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) has been working with INPC and IDNR staff to develop a solution to allow use of a minimal portion of the Land and Water Reserve for road construction (drainage ditch improvement) and temporary and permanent right-of-way easement, while providing the means to protect and improve the condition of the significant natural features. The revised request from IDOT includes a construction zone (0.31 acres), permanent R.O.W. easement (0.53 acres) and temporary R.O.W. easement (additional 0.46 acres; total easement area during road construction 0.99 acres) within the land and water reserve. The construction zone lies within the 0.53 acres requested as a permanent easement and within the 0.99 acres requested for both permanent and temporary easement. IDOT has reduced its impact to reserve resources and will not adversely impact the archeological and high quality natural resources.

REPORT ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Angella Moorehouse Finding of the plan being in the public
Nature Preserves Commission interest and Approval of Plan
Diane Tecic
Department of Natural Resources
Denny O'Connell
Department of Transportation

Item 23:* Deer Management Guidelines

The Management Guidelines give landowners and managers guidance on how to handle a land management issue in a nature preserve or land and water reserve. Once approved by the Commission, they become part of the policy guidance used by staff to review and approve management plans. Updated Animal Control Guidelines for management of white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus Zimmerman) are presented for approval. Under this new guideline preserve managers and owners will be able to routinely implement deer management, including lethal methods on preserves 20 acres in size or larger, with a plan approved by the landowner, INPC staff and as required by the IDNR. The guidelines were submitted to INPC Consultants and Advisors and to selected natural area land managers for review. Recommended changes were incorporated into the documents.

REPORT ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Randy Heidorn and Bob Edgin Approval of Management Guidelines
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 24: Public Comment Period (3 minutes per person)

Item 25: Other Business

Item 26: Adjournment

 

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