ENDANGERED SPECIES SURVEY
SHELBY TOWNSHIP, MI
A new hike/bike pathway is being built in River Bends Park in Shelby Township, Macomb County. Because several state-threatened and special concern species have been historically observed in this area, the Michigan Department of Natural Resources (DNR) require that a threatened and endangered species habitat survey be conducted for each phase of trail development. Anderson, Eckstein, and Westrick, Inc., design engineers for the pathway, subcontracted ASTI Environmental (ASTI) to conduct threatened and endangered species habitat surveys for these species within the project area.
In 2003, ASTI completed a threatened species habitat survey for spotted turtle (Clemmys guttata) with the project area for Phase I of the pathway. ASTI determined that although there was some habitat present within the project area that might host this species, the proposed pathway would have little, if any, impact upon this species due to its location and design. ASTI made several recommendations to further improve the pathway to insure protection of this species. ASTI obtained clearance from the DNR, and the project was allowed to proceed. Phase I of the pathway was constructed in August of 2003.
In 2006 and 2007, ASTI completed a habitat survey for spotted turtle, the state-threatened false hop sedge (Carex lupiliformis), and two special concern species, i.e., Slippershell mussel (Alasmondonta viridis) and Prothonotary warbler (Protonotaria citrea), for Phase II of the pathway. ASTI found suitable habitat for all of these species within the project area. ASTI then conducted a direct search for the false hop sedge during the growing season within the impact areas and did not locate this species. ASTI evaluated the potential impact that the pathway would have upon all of these species during construction and post-pathway development and found that there would be little to no impact on them. ASTI also provided recommendations for species protection during construction. The MDNR gave project clearance, based on ASTI’s findings, and construction of Phase II of the pathway is underway.