Lake Michigan Biodiversity Conservation Strategies
As you may know, The Nature Conservancy, and Michigan Natural Features Inventory are working with multiple experts and stakeholders to develop biodiversity conservation strategies for Lake Michigan (see attached brief project summary). An important part of developing biodiversity conservation strategies for Lake Michigan is to assess threats to biodiversity, and we would like your help in doing that.
Lake Michigan is large and highly variable, and people—both individuals and communities—often identify with portions of the lake (such as Green Bay, etc). Therefore we have stratified the lake into Reporting Units and Assessment Units, based on major patterns of circulation and bathymetry (see attached map-contact us if you would like more information on the process of stratification) and we are structuring our threat assessment at the Reporting Unit scale to account for that variation and allow us to report at a more meaningful scale than the entire lake. We have set up separate surveys for each reporting unit in Lake Michigan. Please feel free to complete all of these if you are familiar with all portions of the lake, or choose only those with which you are familiar. Each survey should require 10 – 30 minutes depending on how familiar you are with the threats in that reporting unit. Use the attached “Threat Rating Criteria” document to rate the categories seen in the survey. You may even want to print this document or have the pdf open for reference while filling out the survey(s).
For the sake of consistency, we are following a published taxonomy of threats and conservation actions (Salafsky et al. 2008, attached). You will notice that most of the threats that appear in the survey use the wording of this taxonomy, but if you know of a threat that doesn’t quite fit the taxonomy, we encourage you to add that threat to the list for a particular target in a way that makes sense to you; we will sort out the relationship to the taxonomy later.
Finally, please complete your surveys by October 24. We will then close the surveys and begin compiling responses immediately after that date. We will seek feedback on the summarized threat ratings, especially those for which there were large discrepancies among the expert ratings.
Links to the surveys appear below.
Thank you for your time and expertise!
Northern Basin: http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/LakeMichiganNorthBasin
Green Bay: http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/LakeMichiganGreenBay
Central Basin: http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/LakeMichiganCentral
Mid-Lake Plateau: http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/LakeMichiganMid
Southern Basin: http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/LakeMichiganSouth