Planning Tools for Conservation

Playa Lakes Joint Venture (PLJV) has developed a suite of biological planning tools to help partners target and evaluate bird habitat conservation efforts and increase conservation efficiency. Partners are encouraged to download the tools below and contact PLJV Science Director Anne Bartuszevige for help in using them in planning for a particular project.

Bird Conservation Plans

The four bird conservation plans provide guidance on recommended habitat management actions to support priority bird population goals. The PLJV contributions can be downloaded below.

Hierarchical All-Bird System (HABS) Database

The Hierarchical All-Bird System (HABS) database was created to determine the current carrying capacity of the PLJV landscape for birds. The database is used to compare carrying capacity to stepped-down national and international bird plan objectives to determine what kind of and how much habitat work needs to be done, such as in the Area Implementation Plans above. This system is also used to evaluate large-scale habitat programs (e.g. Farm Bill programs, burn councils) and their potential affect on bird species.

Species for Management Action Database

The Species for Management Action database provides information on all birds that have occurred within the PLJV boundaries. Information includes bird population estimates for North America, shortgrass prairie (BCR 18) and central mixed-grass prairie (BCR 19), as well as the various statuses of birds from national bird conservation plans and government entities. The database also includes population trends provided principally by the Breeding Bird Survey and other sources. The PLJV uses this information to help prioritize species for different conservation actions such as monitoring or habitat work. A draft of proposed species for habitat action can be found in the Access reports in the Species for Management Action database.

Playa Decision Support System

In response to increasing demand for spatially explicit information and guidance regarding playa conservation, the PLJV and its partners are developing the Playa Decision Support System (DSS), a GIS-based tool designed to maximize the conservation of playas by guiding land-use activities, such as wind energy development, conservation program enrollment, and conservation easements and restoration projects. The Playa DSS is intended for use by multiple stakeholder groups including natural resource professionals, land managers and developers, providing them with data and written guidance that can inform decisions that may impact playas and their associated wildlife in the six-state PLJV region.

Southern Plains Wind and Wildlife Planner

The Southern Plains Wind & Wildlife Planner provides best management practices for priority natural resources in Colorado and New Mexico. The tool is designed to help wind energy developers reduce potential impacts to wildlife and ecosystems during the planning and development of projects in these states.