ILLINOIS NATURE PRESERVES COMMISSION

AGENDA
ONE HUNDRED SIXTY-FOURTH MEETING

Vermilion County Conservation District
Forest Glen Preserve Gannett Outdoor Education Center
20301 E. 900 North Road
Westville, Illinois 61883
August 3, 1999 9:00 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 163rd Meeting, May 4, 1999

Item 4:* Next Meeting Schedule

Item 5: Election of Officers - INPC Nominating Committee Report

REPORT
Chair, Nominating Committee
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 6: Election of Consultants

REPORT
Carolyn Grosboll
Nature Preserves Commission

Nominated Consultants:
Gerald Adelmann
Marilyn Campbell
Dr. Kenneth Robertson
Dr. Robert Betz
Kenneth V. Fiske
Valerie Spale
Bruce Boyd
Al Pyott
Ed Stirling

Item 7: Natural Areas Acquisition Fund Fiscal Year 2000 Land Acquisition Proposals

The Natural Areas Acquisition Fund (NAAF) is administered by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR). The Nature Preserves Commission (INPC) recommends specific land acquisition projects to the Director of the IDNR. The recommendations for fiscal year 2000 include fifteen tracts of land within eight natural areas. All of the natural areas are included on the Illinois Natural Areas Inventory (INAI). All of the proposed parcels protect or buffer a high quality natural community and/or provide habitat for endangered and threatened species of plants and animals. The fifteen tracts total 1,356 acres and will cost approximately $3,241,000. With incidental and relocation costs, the total expenditure from the NAAF to acquire the fifteen tracts will be approximately $3,644,700.

REPORT                                          ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Carl Becker                                      Commission Recommendation
IDNR, Division of Natural Heritage

Item 8: INPC Staff Report

REPORT
Carolyn Grosboll, Don McFall, and Randy Heidorn
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 9: IDNR Staff Report

REPORT
Carl Becker
IDNR, Division of Natural Heritage

Item 10:* Coles Co. - Embarras River Land and Water Reserve, Registration

The proposed Embarras River Land and Water Reserve consists of approximately 980 acres in Fox Ridge State Park, 3 miles south of Charleston. The area is owned by the IDNR and protects over 5 miles of the Embarras River, a Biologically Significant Stream and an Illinois Natural Areas Inventory site (INAI #950), ten endangered or threatened species, 20 species of forest interior birds, and exceptionally diverse mussel populations. Allowable uses include hiking, hunting, fishing, canoeing, horseback riding on existing trails, and a pre-existing handtrap range.

REPORT                                             ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Bob Szafoni                                         Registration Approval
IDNR, Division of Natural Heritage

Item 11:* Jo Daviess Co. - Tapley Woods Land and Water Reserve, Registration

Tapley Woods is a 259-acre site located in Jo Daviess County, approximately 7 miles southeast of Galena. The site consists of upland, slope, and ravine forest, with dolomite bedrock outcrops and associated springs. It is one of the best examples owned and managed by the IDNR of the original upland and ravine forest of the Wisconsin Driftless Natural Division of Illinois, a unique region of the state that escaped Pleistocene glaciation. Tapley Woods supports breeding populations of area-sensitive forest wildlife species and provides opportunities for hiking, nature study, wildlife viewing, research, and hunting. The site contains a rich flora including spreading sedge (Carex laxiculmis), rice grass (Oryzoposis racemosa), yellow lady's-slipper orchid (Cypripedium pubescens), Goldie's fern (Dryopteris goldiana), and the state-threatened drooping sedge (Carex prasina).

REPORT                                                       ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Ed Anderson                                                  Registration Approval
IDNR, Division of Natural Heritage

Item 12:* Shelby Co. - Margaret Guzy Pothole Wetlands Land and Water Reserve, Registration

The proposed Margaret Guzy Pothole Wetlands Land and Water Reserve is 159 acres of restored prairie and shallow water wetlands located 2 miles northeast of Findlay. The site was bequeathed to the IDNR by Margaret Guzy for the purpose of developing it into a wildlife sanctuary. The complex contains 6 shallow wetlands interspersed with restored mesic and wet-mesic prairie. The site attracts tens of thousands of migrating waterfowl and shorebirds, has the size to attract area sensitive grassland birds, and represents the best of its kind of habitat in row crop dominated east-central Illinois. Allowable uses include bird watching, educational tours, and research.

REPORT                                              ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Eric Smith                                              Registration Approval
IDNR, Division of Natural Heritage

Item 13:* Hamilton Co. - Karcher's Post Oak Woods Nature Preserve, Dedication

The proposed Karcher's Post Oak Woods Nature Preserve is owned by the Illinois Audubon Society who wishes to dedicate the entire 39.5-acre tract as nature preserve. Karcher's Post Oak Woods is located in the Mount Vernon Hill Country Section of the Southern Till Plain Natural Division of Illinois and contains 32 acres of very old growth post oak (Quercus stellata) forest and dry-mesic upland forest as recognized by the INAI. Many of the canopy trees are more than 150 years old with the largest trees approaching 36 inches in diameter and 225 years in age. In addition to the high quality forest, the site also contains one of Illinois' northernmost populations of spider lily (Hymenocallis caroliniana). If dedicated, this area would be the first site so designated in Hamilton County, Illinois. On behalf of the Illinois Audubon Society, the INPC staff recommend that this 39.5-acre tract be granted preliminary approval for dedication as an Illinois Nature Preserve.

REPORT                                   ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Bob Edgin                                   Preliminary Approval for Dedication
Nature Preserves Commission

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

Hopewell Hill Prairies Nature Preserve, owned by Maury Brucker and Emiko Yang, is a 2-acre tract (Lot #s 116 and 117) within the 78-acre Hopewell Estates Hill Prairies Natural Area (INAI #231). This property is located along the Illinois River bluffs approximately 18 miles northeast of Peoria in the Village of Hopewell. Mr. Brucker and Ms. Yang propose to dedicate approximately 1.1 acres of Grade B glacial drift hill prairie and Grade C woodlands on Lot #139 as an addition to Hopewell Hill Prairies Nature Preserve. The proposed addition is separated from the dedicated nature preserve by approximately 950 feet of privately owned, unprotected natural area, located mostly on very steep, undeveloped hillsides. The INPC staff recommends 1.1 acres at Lot #139 in the Village of Hopewell be granted preliminary approval as an addition to Hopewell Hill Prairies Nature Preserve.

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

Item 15:* Monroe Co. - William A. DeMint Memorial Hill Prairie Nature Preserve, Dedication

Dr. William Bowles proposes to dedicate the William A. DeMint Memorial Hill Prairie, a 28- acre portion of the 429-acre Prairie du Rocher Herpetological Area INAI site (INAI # 938). The proposed nature preserve contains Grade C loess hill prairie, Grade A limestone cliff community, and Grade C dry and dry-mesic upland forest. This matrix of habitats is home to a variety of rare, threatened, and endangered plant and animal species, many of which are Ozark plateau or western plains species and have restricted ranges in Illinois. These include the Great Plains rat snake (Elaphe guttata emoryi), and the flathead snake ( Tantilla gracilis), both Illinois threatened; the coachwhip (Masticophis flagellum flagellum), state-endangered and the rare "Plains" scorpion (Centruroides vittatus). Western species such as stickleaf (Mentzelia oligosperma), and Plains prickly-pear cactus (Opuntia macrorhiza) are present on the proposed nature preserve. The state-threatened timber rattlesnake (Crotalus horridus), has also been documented in the INAI site. The William A. DeMint Memorial Hill Prairie is located approximately one-quarter of a mile southeast of the recently dedicated Brickey-Gonterman Memorial Hill Prairie Nature Preserve.

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

Item 16:* Coles Co. - Warbler Woods Nature Preserve, Dedication

Warbler Woods is a 202-acre Land and Water Reserve that protects a large expanse of dry-mesic and mesic upland forest, as well as upland fields that are being restored to native woodland. The area lies 3 miles southeast of Charleston. Mr. Lawrence Hunt has owned and protected this forest since 1981. He registered the area as a land and water reserve in 1997. He wishes to enhance the protection of this area by dedicating it as a nature preserve. The forest harbors a population of the state-threatened false hellebore (Veratrum woodii) and provides breeding habitat for numerous forest interior birds. About 35 acres of forest rank as Grade B using criteria established by the INAI. Mr. Hunt wishes to enhance the protection of this area by dedicating it as a nature preserve. The Illinois Nature Preserves Commission conferred preliminary approval for dedication of Warbler Woods at its 163rd Meeting on May 4, 1999 (Resolution #1477). On behalf of Mr. Hunt, INPC staff recommend final approval for dedication of Warbler Woods as an Illinois Nature Preserve.

REPORT                                              ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Mary Kay Solecki                                 Final Approval for Dedication
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 17:* Cook Co. - Dropseed Prairie Nature Preserve, Dedication

The proposed Dropseed Prairie Nature Preserve is part of an archipelago of four prairies that are collectively referred to as the Indian Boundary Prairies, surviving remnants of the vast prairie that once extended for miles along the Lake Plain Section of old Lake Chicago. Dropseed Prairie, at 13 acres, is the smallest of the Indian Boundary Prairies. Dropseed Prairie and the other Indian Boundary Prairies have prospered under the watchful guidance of Friends of the Indian Boundary Prairies, an affiliate of The Nature Conservancy's Volunteer Stewardship Network. Owned by The Nature Conservancy, Dropseed Prairie was originally known as I-57 Prairie and recognized for extant very high quality (Grade A) and high quality (Grade B) mesic prairie communities (INAI #425). In addition to the significant natural features of this site, Dropseed Prairie provides habitat for several prairie restricted insects including the two-spotted skipper (Euphyes bimacula) and the Aphrodite butterfly (Speyeria Aphrodite). It is best known for its namesake grass, prairie dropseed (Sporobolus heterolepis), which grows profusely in the calcareous black soil. Dropseed Prairie was conferred preliminary approval for dedication as an Illinois Nature Preserve at the Commission's 145th Meeting in October, 1994 (Resolution #1247). Both the INPC staff and The Nature Conservancy are pleased to recommend final approval for dedication of Dropseed Prairie as an Illinois Prairie Nature Preserve.

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

Item 18:* Cook Co. - Addition of Nature Preserve and Nature Preserve Buffer to Paintbrush Prairie Nature Preserve, Dedication

Paintbrush Prairie is one of four prairies located in the City of Markham, Illinois that are collectively referred to as the Indian Boundary Prairies. The Indian Boundary Prairies take their name from an American Indian treaty boundary line that passed just east of Paintbrush Prairie along the I-57 alignment. The other prairies are Gensburg-Markham Prairie Nature Preserve, Sundrop Prairie, and Dropseed Prairie. Aside from the collective importance of this archipelago of prairies, Paintbrush Prairie supports more than 200 native plant species, including the state-listed ared false foxglove (Tomanthera auriculata). Paintbrush Prairie Nature Preserve (60 acres) was conferred preliminary approval at the Commission's 145th Meeting in October, 1994 (Resolution #1248). At the Commission's 148th Meeting in August, 1995 (Resolution #1281), the Commission conferred preliminary approval for dedication of a key 8-acre addition. In October, 1998, a 10.1-acre addition was conferred preliminary approval at the Commission's 161st Meeting (Resolution #1445). Both the 60-acre tract along with the 8-acre addition were granted final approval for dedication at the Commission's 162nd Meeting in February, 1999 (Resolution #1465). A 2-acre buffer was granted preliminary approval as an addition to Paintbrush Prairie at the Commission's 163rd Meeting in May, 1999 (Resolution #1478). The Nature Conservancy and INPC staff recommended final approval for dedication of 12.1 acres (10.1 acres as nature preserve and 2-acre buffer) as an addition to Paintbrush Prairie Nature Preserve.

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

Item 19* Lake Co. - Addition to Lloyd's Woods Nature Preserve, Dedication

Lloyd's Woods is an integral part of a protected corridor of woodlands that extend along the Des Plaines River that was identified on the INAI (#663) for extant high-quality mesic upland forest. Mrs. Glen (Marion) Lloyd currently owns Lloyd's Woods Nature Preserve and proposes to dedicate 1.8 acres as an addition. Lloyd's Woods Nature Preserve was granted preliminary approval for dedication at the Commission's 77th Meeting in January, 1980 (Resolution #534). Reiteration of final approval was granted by the Commission at its 91st Meeting in October, 1982 (Resolution #688). Approximately 96 acres of high-quality mesic upland and floodplain forest were preserved by Mrs. Glen Lloyd when the Commission granted final approval for dedication of Lloyd's Woods as an Illinois Nature Preserve (INPC 1980). Subsequently, the Commission granted preliminary approval for dedication of two additions (Anderson 1991), totaling 8.6 acres, at its 132nd Meeting in August, 1991 (Resolution #1091). Final approval for those additions was granted at the Commission's 133rd Meeting in October, 1991 (Resolution #1101). The Commission conferred preliminary approval for dedication of two additional tracts of land (totaling 47 acres) at its 154th Meeting in February, 1997 (Resolution #1340). Final approval of those two additions was granted at the Commission's 159th Meeting on August 6, 1997 (Resolution #1374). At the Commission's 163rd Meeting on May 4, 1999 (Resolution 1479) preliminary approval was granted for 1.8 acres as an addition to Lloyd's Woods Nature Preserve. On behalf of Mrs. Glen Lloyd, the INPC staff recommend final dedication of 1.8 acres as an addition to Lloyd's Woods Nature Preserve increasing the amount of land preserved from 151.6 acres to 153.4 acres.

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

Item 20* LaSalle Co. - Lower Fox River - Blake's Landing Nature Preserve, Dedication

The proposed Lower Fox River - Blake's Landing Nature Preserve is a 17-acre parcel on the north shore of the Fox River. Owned by IDNR, this site is a quarter-mile long cliff, forming a scenic bend in the river. It is located less than a quarter of a mile north of the Lower Fox River - Wedron Palisades Nature Preserve. The lower Fox River was identified on the INAI (#1444) as an "outstanding example of the rivers and creeks of the Illinois River watershed".

The river also provides habitat for the state-endangered greater redhorse, (Moxostoma valenciennesi), and the state-threatened river redhorse, (Moxostoma carinatum). Although Blake's Landing was not identified on the INAI, it qualifies as an Illinois Nature Preserve because of its high natural quality, geologic features, and shoreline to the Fox River. Lower Fox River - Blake's Landing was conferred preliminary approval for dedication as an Illinois Nature Preserve at the Commission's 163rd Meeting on May 4, 1999 (Resolution #1480).

REPORT                                              ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Brian Reilly                                            Final Approval for Dedication
IDNR, Division of Natural Heritage

Item 21* Madison Co. - Kemp and Cora Hutchinson Bird Sanctuary Addition of Buffer to John M. Olin Nature Preserve, Amendment to Dedication

The addition of the Kemp and Cora Hutchinson Bird Sanctuary as buffer to the John M. Olin Nature Preserve was conferred final approval for dedication at INPC's 163rd Meeting on May 4, 1999 (Resolution #1482). This amendment is proposed to provide a corrected legal description for the property, since an incorrect legal was previously provided. The Great Rivers Land Trust owns the 42.38-acre parcel for which the amendment is being presented. The Kemp and Cora Hutchinson Bird Sanctuary is adjacent to the John M. Olin Nature Preserve and is an important addition to the complex of contiguous lands that encompasses the John M. Olin Nature Preserve, Mississippi Sanctuary Nature Preserve, and Oblate Fathers' Woods Nature Preserve. This addition will increase the amount of contiguous preserved land, currently 350 acres, to 393 acres. The property helps protect a variety of important biotic features on the three adjoining nature preserves.

REPORT                                   ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Debbie Newman                        Amendment to Dedication
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 22:* Vermilion Co. - Jordan Creek of the North Fork Nature Preserve, Dedication

The Outdoor Heritage Foundation proposes to dedicate a 0.97-mile long segment of Jordan Creek, a tributary of the North Fork of the Vermilion River as an Illinois Nature Preserve. The site is located approximately 15 miles north of Danville in the Grand Prairie Section of the Grand Prairie Natural Division. The proposed nature preserve is a 0.97-mile long segment of Jordan Creek and a 200-foot wide strip on either side of the centerline of the creek, totaling about 46.8 acres. An additional 231.7 acres of former pasture and forest is proposed as buffer. Jordan Creek is recognized as an outstanding example of the streams of the Wabash-Ohio River watershed. Five state-endangered mussels occur in the creek at this site. These are the slippershell (Alasmidonta viridis), wavy-rayed lampmussel (Lampsilis fasciola), purple lilliput (Toxolasma lividus), rainbow (Villosa iris), and little spectaclecase (Villosa lienosa). In addition, the state-endangered red-shouldered hawk (Buteo lineatus) and northern harrier (Circus cyaneus) have been observed in the proposed nature preserve. The Commission conferred preliminary approval to dedicate this 0.97-mile long segment of Jordan Creek as a nature preserve and an additional 231.7 acres of former pasture and forest as buffer to the nature preserve at its 161st Meeting on October 27, 1998 (Resolution #1450). However, the buffer land is not proposed for final approval. The INPC staff recommends final approval for the dedication of Jordan Creek of the North Fork as an Illinois Nature Preserve.

REPORT                                   ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Mary Kay Solecki                      Final Approval for Dedication
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 23:* Will Co. - Addition of Buffer to Messenger Woods Nature Preserve, Dedication

Messenger Woods Nature Preserve is a 407-acre natural area owned by the Forest Preserve District of Will County. A large portion of Messenger Woods was identified by the INAI (#884) as a Category I natural area due to the occurrence of Grade B dry-mesic upland forest and Grades A and B mesic upland forest. Portions of the natural area identified by the INAI extend onto private property surrounding the nature preserve. Anthony and Mary Pragovich own 5.1 acres of the original natural area. The Pragovichs are interested in habitat conservation and are aware of the role their property serves in buffering and preserving the intact mesic upland forest community adjacent to Messenger Woods Nature Preserve. Mr. and Mrs. Pragovich are proposing to dedicate approximately 2.75 acres of their property as nature preserve buffer. The Commission conferred preliminary approval for dedication of this site at its 162nd Meeting on February 2, 1999 (Resolution #1462).

REPORT                                             ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Brian Reilly                                           Final Approval for Dedication
IDNR, Division of Natural Heritage

Item 24:* Lake Co. - MacArthur Woods Nature Preserve - Request for Additional Equestrian Trail

MacArthur Woods Nature Preserve is 446 acres in size and was granted final approval for dedication at the Commission's 84th Meeting on July 27, 1981 (Resolution #590). At the time of dedication the Commission agreed to provide a corridor for a multi-use trail within 500 feet of the eastern and southern boundaries of the nature preserve. This was to allow the linkage of the Des Plaines River Trail through the nature preserve. No additional equestrian trails were discussed at that time. The Lake County Forest Preserve District proposes to build an additional horse trail from the southeast corner of the nature preserve to the Des Plaines River Trail to provide access from local stables to the trail. Since the original corridor did not address additional access points to the trail, the District has been asked to provide information on any other potential access points that might be proposed for the trail within the nature preserve.

REPORT                                                 ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Jim Anderson                                           Commission Approval of Trail Addition
Lake County Forest Preserve District

Randy Heidorn
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 25: Lake Co. - Illinois Beach Nature Preserve and North Dunes Nature Preserve - Update on Asbestos Investigations and Remediation

REPORT
Randy Heidorn
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 26: Public Comment Period (3 minutes per person)

Item 27: Other Business

Item 28: Adjournment