ILLINOIS NATURE PRESERVES COMMISSION AGENDA

ONE HUNDRED AND FIFTY-EIGHTH MEETING

Illinois State Library
300 South Second Street
Springfield, Illinois
February 3, 1998 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 157th Meeting, October 28, 1997

Item 4:* Next Meeting Schedule

Item 5: INPC Staff Report

REPORT
Don McFall and Randy Heidorn
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 6: IDNR Staff Report

REPORT
Carl Becker
IDNR, Division of Natural Heritage

Item 7:* Cook Co. -- Superior Street Prairie Land and Water Reserve, Registration

Superior Street Prairie is 33.5 acres of dry-mesic sand savanna, mesic sand prairie, wet prairie and sedge meadow owned by the Calumet Memorial Park District. It is located in the Chicago Lake Plain Section of the Northeastern Morainal Natural Division. The prairie was originally identified by the Illinois Natural Areas Inventory (INAI #500) as the Thornton Fractional North High School Prairie. The site contains a Grade A dry-mesic sand savanna, Grade B mesic sand prairie, wet prairie and sedge meadow. The state endangered grass pink orchid (Calopogon tuberosus), round-leaved sundew (Drosera rotundifolia), and northern panic grass (Panicum boreale) are among the three hundred species of plants growing in the proposed reserve. Approval of this registration was deferred from the October 28, 1997 meeting at the request of the landowner.

REPORT                                             ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Brian Reilly                                           Registration Approval
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 8:* Hancock Co. -- Allison Savanna Land and Water Reserve, Registration

Allison Savanna is an 8-acre tract, part of a former railroad line in west central Illinois. The proposed Land and Water Reserve contains remnants of dry mesic, mesic and wet mesic savanna natural communities of the Galesburg Section of the Western Forest-Prairie Natural Division. Allison Savanna provides habitat for many of the typical prairie and savanna plants as well as two endangered species of plants; savanna blazing star (Liatris scariosa var. nieuwlandii) and bunch flower (Melanthium virginicum). The proposed reserve is owned by Mr. Tom Kolleck of Carthage.

REPORT                                             ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Angella Moorehouse                             Registration Approval
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 9:* Jersey Co. -- Brainerd Cave Land and Water Reserve, Registration

Brainerd Cave is a significant example of a terrestrial cave community and serves as a hibernaculum for a moderate number of bats. The cave was recognized by the INAI (#605). The 2-acre site is located in upland forest within Pere Marquette State Park and is owned and managed by IDNR. Approval of this registration was deferred from the October 28, 1997 meeting due to a correction needed in the legal description.

REPORT                                             ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Tara Gibbs                                             Registration Approval
IDNR, Division of Natural Heritage

Item 10:* Kankakee Co. -- Aroma Forest Preserve Land and Water Reserve, Registration

The Kankakee River Valley Forest Preserve District would like to register 46.5 acres as a Land and Water Reserve. Natural community types found on the proposed reserve are dry sand prairie, dry sand savanna, dry-mesic sand savanna, sedge meadow, and mesic floodplain forest. During the Illinois Natural Areas Inventory (INAI), .2 of an acre of grade-B dry sand prairie was identified in the Kankakee Sand Area Section of the Grand Prairie Natural Division. The grade-C sedge meadow were identified by INAI field investigators as notable for Kankakee County. The area qualifies for a Land and Water Reserve due to its potential restoration of natural community types, which existed in northern Illinois at the time of settlement by European immigrants.

REPORT                                                   ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Brian Reilly, Nature Preserves Comm.        Registration Approval
Doug Short - Kankakee River Valley
Forest Preserve District

Item 11:* Lawrence Co. -- Red Hills Seep Springs Land and Water Reserve, Registration

Red Hills Seep Springs is an 11-acre site within Red Hills State Park in southeastern Illinois. The proposed reserve is characterized by two forested ravines, each of which contains a seep. The INAI recognized the site INAI (#1010) as an outstanding example of the original seep natural communities of the the Mt. Vernon Hill Country Section of the Southern Till Plain Natural Division. Red Hills Seep Springs provides habitat for a state threatened salamander and two endangered species of plants. The site is owned and managed by IDNR.

REPORT                                                                 ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Terry Esker                                                              Registration Approval
IDNR, Division of Natural Heritage

Item 12:* Macoupin Co. and Montgomery Co. -- Gillespie Prairie Land and Water Reserve, Registration

Gillespie Prairie is a 7-mile stretch of former railroad right-of-way that contains several good quality remnants of mesic prairie. The 78-acre tract is owned and managed by IDNR. Gillespie Prairie was included on the INAI (#1337) because it supports populations of two state listed plant species, the state endangered eastern blue-eyed grass (Sisyrinchium atlanticum) and state threatened ear-leaved foxglove (Tomanthera auriculata). Approval of this registration was deferred from the October 28, 1997 meeting because the registration document had not been executed by the landowner.

REPORT                                            ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Mark Phipps                                        Registration Approval
IDNR, Division of Natural Heritage

Item 13:* McHenry County - Wheeler Fen Land and Water Reserve, Registration

Wheeler Fen is a 26.4 acre mosaic of graminoid fen, sedge meadow, and uplands located in McHenry County within the Morainal Section of the Northeastern Morainal Natural Division of Illinois. The proposed Wheeler Fen Land and Water Reserve is owned in part by the City of McHenry (17.8 acres) and McHenry County (8.6 acres). The commitment from the owners to protect Wheeler Fen as a Land and Water Reserve are linked with a McHenry County Highway Department plan to construct an arterial road along the southern border of the proposed Land and Water Reserve. Furthermore, the US Army Corps of Engineers has issued a permit to discharge fill material to facilitate construction of this arterial road with the proviso that 26.4 acres of Wheeler Fen be considered for protection as an Illinois Land and Water Reserve. Two state threatened plant species have been recorded from the proposed Wheeler Fen Land & Water Reserve and include the Early fen sedge (Carex crawei ) and the Common yellow lake sedge (Carex rostrata var. utriculata). Preservation of Wheeler Fen as a Land and Water Reserve will protect a rare graminoid fen community located in Illinois' most rapidly developing county.

REPORT                                             ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Steve Byers                                          Registration Approval of City of McHenry Tract
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 14:* Marshall Co. -- Hopewell Hill Prairies Nature Preserve, Dedication

Hopewell Hill Prairies, owned by Maury Brucker and Emiko Yang, is an approximately 1-acre tract within the 78-acre Hopewell Estates Hill Prairies Natural Area (INAI #231), which is within the Peoria Wilds Resource Rich Area. The tract contains open woodlands on the uplands and ravine bottoms with Grade A glacial drift hill prairie on the steep southwestern-facing slopes. Only 51.5 acres of glacial drift hill prairie were identified statewide on the original INAI. Schreber's aster (Aster schreberi)(state threatened and rated as highly conservative) has been found in the woodlands at the proposed preserve. On the prairie openings, several conservative plant species have been identified, including white prairie clover (Dalea candida), purple prairie clover (D. Purpurea), lead plant (Amorpha canescens), and prairie dropseed (Sporobolus heterolepis). The presence of these species indicates the site has remained relatively undisturbed, which also appears to be the case for other hill prairie openings of the 78-acre INAI natural area-all of which is privately owned and currently unprotected. Dedication of this site as an Illinois Nature Preserve would be an important first step toward preservation of the other glacial drift hill prairie openings at the INAI natural area.

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

Item 15:* Vermilion Co. -- Westfall Prairie Restoration Nature Preserve, Dedication

The Vermilion County Conservation District proposes to dedicate the approximately 40-acre Doris Westfall Prairie Restoration as an Illinois Nature Preserve in honor of its founder, Doris Westfall. This high-quality prairie restoration provides habitat for the State endangered Henslow's Sparrow (Ammodramus henslowii). Viable populations of the state endangered royal catchfly (Silene regia) and the state threatened queen-of-the-prairie (Filipendula rubra) were established here from seed. This prairie restoration has been nominated for inclusion in the Illinois Natural Areas Inventory. The Illinois Plant Translocation and Restoration Policy allows nature preserve dedication of qualifying restorations. However, no such restorations have been proposed or dedicated as a nature preserve yet.

REPORT                                             ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Marilyn Campbell                                 Preliminary Approval for Dedication
Vermilion Co. Conservation District

Item 16:* LaSalle Co. -- Mitchell's Grove Nature Preserve, Dedication

Mitchell's Grove is a 184-acre tract owned and managed by IDNR. The grove is a diverse area located at the confluence of Tomahawk Creek and the Little Vermilion River. The site contains upland forest, floodplain forest, sandstone rock outcrops, springs and seeps, frontage on the two major streams, remnant hill prairie and several northern relict species of plants. The proposed preserve provides habitat for the state threatened northern white cedar (Thuja occidentalis), forked aster (Aster furcatus) and spotted coral root orchid (Corallorhiza maculata). INPC granted preliminary approval for dedication of Mitchell's Grove Nature Preserve at its 157th meeting in October, 1997 (Resolution #1378).

REPORT                                            ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Todd Bittner                                        Final Approval for Dedication
IDNR, Division of Natural Heritage

Item 17:* McHenry Co. -- Addition to Julia M. & Royce L. Parker Fen Nature Preserve, Dedication

Ms. Jewel Hahn seeks final approval for dedication of a 3-acre addition as nature preserve buffer to Parker Fen Nature Preserve. This addition received preliminary approval for dedication at INPC's 157th Meeting held October, 1997 (Resolution #1382). Parker Fen Nature Preserve was included on the INAI (#863) and received final approval for dedication at INPC's 107th Meeting in October, 1985 (Resolution #874). Parker Fen supports populations of the state endangered Common bog arrow grass (Triglochin maritimum) and state threatened beaked spike rush (Eleochris rostellata). Final approval will guarantee protection of important groundwater resources, maintain existing surface hydrology, and facilitate a landowner contact program designed to protect important groundwater recharge zones for Parker Fen Nature Preserve.

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

Item 18:* McHenry County - Spring Hollow Addition to Boone Creek Fen Nature Preserve, Dedication

Ms. Elizabeth Babcock seeks final approval for dedication of 32.5 acres of mesic upland forest, sedge meadow, and seep natural plant communities as nature preserve buffer to Boone Creek Fen Nature Preserve. This addition received preliminary approval for dedication at INPC's 157th Meeting held in October, 1997, (Resolution #1380). Over 150 plant species and over 100 bird species have been sited and recorded from Spring Hollow. Boone Creek Fen was identified on the INAI (#1015) and was recently conferred final approval for dedication at INPC's 156th Meeeting in August, 1997 (Resolution #1376). Protection of Spring Hollow will save important groundwater resources, maintain high water quality, and result in preservation of wetland communities in Boone Creek Fen valley. In 1977, Spring Hollow was granted the first conservation easement in Illinois with the Natural Land Institute. Final approval will guarantee protection of Spring Hollow started 20 years ago and further protect Boone Creek Fen Nature Preserve.

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

Item 19:* Ogle Co. -- Piros Prairie Nature Preserve, Dedication

Piros Prairie is an approximately six-acre tract of wet-mesic prairie and sedge meadow located in Ogle County. The site was recently added to the INAI and represents two high quality community types that are rare within the Oregon Section of the Rock River Hill Country Natural Division of Illinois. The prairie is owned by Sheryl Piros. It is her desire to dedicate the six-acre prairie/wetland tract as an Illinois Nature Preserve and to dedicate an additional two acres or so of surrounding land as nature preserve buffer.

The Commission granted preliminary approval for dedication of Piros Prairie Nature Preserve at its 157th meeting in October, 1997 (Resolution #1383).

REPORT                                            ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
John Alesandrini                                  Final Approval for Dedication
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 20:* Pope Co. -- Spivey's Valley Glade Nature Preserve, Dedication

The proposed Spivey's Valley Glade Nature Preserve, owned by Dan and Georgia Spivey, is 18.4 acres in size and has been recently added to the INAI. Located in eastern Pope County near the Ohio River, the area contains Grade A limestone glade and Grade A limestone barrens communities. Spivey's Valley Glade is unique in that it occurs within a narrow drainage in Mississippian-aged sandstone capped hills. The sandstone has been scoured out exposing the limestone. This is the only valley glade in southern Illinois and perhaps in Illinois. Three listed plant species occur there, including the largest reproducing population of the state threatened climbing milkweed (Matelea obliqua), the state endangered wild lettuce (Lactuca hirsuta sanguinea) and the state threatened aster (Aster undulatus). Spivey's Valley Glade Nature Preserve was granted preliminary approval by INPC at its 157th meeting in October, 1997 (Resolution #1384).

REPORT                                     ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Judy Faulkner                               Final Approval for Dedication
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 21: Lake Co. -- Illinois Beach Nature Preserve, Report on Asbestos Contamination.

REPORT                                                          ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Stan Yonkauski IDNR,                                     Authorization of Asbestos Removal
Office of Legal Counsel

Item 22:* Johnson Co. -- Heron Pond-Little Black Slough Nature Preserve, Update on Heron Pond erosion control

REPORT
Randy Heidorn
Nature Preserves Commission
Item 23: Public Comment Period (3 minutes per person)

Item 24: Other Business

Item 25: Adjournment