ECOLOGICAL STANDING COMMITTEE

MEETING NOTES AND ACTION ITEMS

DATE: December 17, 2012

LOCATION:  Niagara Power Project Vista Classroom

ATTENDEES: Schoenwiesner, Steve (NYPA); Daly, Robert (NYPA); Harper, Lee (Riveredge Associates); Klein, Art (ADK); Wooster, Margaret (Buffalo Niagara Riverkeeper); Gallo, Kerrie (Buffalo Niagara Riverkeeper)Fischer, Patricia (Tuscarora Nation); Patterson, Neil Jr. (Tuscarora Nation); Wagner, William. (Fisher Associates); DePriest, Tim (NYSDEC); Perot, Morris (Kleinschmidt Associates); Beahan, Lawrence (Sierra Club); Westhafer, Dorothy (Quality Quest Coalition); Frazier, David (Gomez and Sullivan Engineers)

 

 1. Habitat Enhancement and Restoration Fund (HERF) Update:

Steve Schoenwiesner of NYPA provided an assessment of the HERF. The remaining amount for HERF projects is currently $15,869,269.

2. HERF Project Pre-proposals and Proposals:

SUNY ESF - Ecology of Young-of-the Year and Juvenile Muskellunge in Buffalo Harbor and the Upper Niagara River

The ESC decided that this pre-proposal is not a suitable project for HERF funding.

Action Item: Steve Schoenwiesner will notify SUNY ESF of the ESCís decision.

SUNY BUFFALO STATE - Status of the Niagara River Benthic Community: Effects of Water Fluctuations, Contamination, and Long-Term Trends

The ESC decided that this pre-proposal is not a suitable project for HERF funding.

Action Item: Steve Schoenwiesner will notify SUNY Buffalo State of the ESCís decision.

 

SUNY BROCKPORT - Status of Longear Sunfish in Lower Tonawanda Creek, Niagara Basin

The ESC decided that this pre-proposal is a suitable HERF project and will make a request for a full proposal.

Action Item: Steve Schoenwiesner will request a full proposal from SUNY Brockport.

NYSDEC - Defining Habitat Use and Behavior of the Map Turtle in the Upper Niagara River

The ESC decided that this pre-proposal is a suitable HERF project and will make a request for a full proposal.

Action Item: Steve Schoenwiesner will request a full proposal from NYSDEC.

 

TUSCARORA NATION - Tuscarora Grassland Restoration

The ESC decided that this proposal is a suitable HERF project and reached consensus to fund the project.

Action Item: Steve Schoenwiesner will notify the Haudenosaunee Environmental Task Force of the Tuscarora Nation that the Tuscarora Grassland Restoration Project has been approved for funding.

SUNY ESF - Evaluation of Near shore Fish Assemblages, Habitat, and the Effects of Herbivorous Rudd

SUNY ESF discussed their second year (2012) progress, and requested funding for 2013.

The ESC approved an additional year of funding for this project.

Action Item: Steve Schoenwiesner will inform SUNY ESF that the ESC has approved funding for 2013.

3. Ongoing HERF Projects Status Updates:

NYSDEC and NYPA Ė Fish Attraction Structures and Common Tern Habitat Improvement Project

Dive efforts in fall of 2012 verified that the Aqua Lane fish attraction structures are working as planned.

 

4. Habitat Improvement Project (HIP) Process and Cost Updates

NYPA presented on the 2012 HIP Activities. The projects reported on were Motor Island, Little Beaver Island, Invasive Species Control, Common Terns, Osprey Nesting, Fish Attraction Structures, Frog Island, and Strawberry Island

 

5. Habitat Improvement Projects Cost Update

NYPA presented an update on HIPs costs. At total of $8,189,471 has been spent across 8 projects as of December 17, 2012.

 

6. Wrap-Up and Review of Action Items (led by NYPA)