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NEWS ARCHIVE:     Age: 678 days

Incidental take notices for Lafayette and Monroe counties

Contact(s): Stacy Rowe, 608-266-7012
December 11, 2018



MADISON - Two proposed projects could result in the "incidental taking" of rare species in Lafayette and Monroe counties under authorizations the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources proposes to issue for the projects. Incidental take refers to the unintentional loss of individual endangered or threatened animals or plants that does not put the overall population of the species at risk.

The Wisconsin Department of Transportation proposes to replace the State Highway 78 bridge crossing the Pecatonica River in Lafayette County. The presence of the state endangered Blanchard's cricket frog (Acris blanchardi) has been confirmed in the vicinity of the project site. DNR staff determined that the proposed project may result in the incidental taking of some frogs.

Proposed improvements include removing and replacing the bridge deck. Guardrail at all corners of the bridge will be removed and replaced, which requires grading on the existing slopes. Fifty feet of existing asphalt on both approaches of the structure will be milled and overlaid with new hot mix asphalt to blend into the new bridge deck. Existing asphalt shoulders will be removed and replaced to accommodate the new guardrail installations.

A proposed We Energies project involving the construction of approximately 16 miles of 12-inch gas main may result in the incidental taking of a rare moth and lizard in Monroe County. The Sparta Lateral Project, which was approved by the Public Service Commission of Wisconsin, extends from the Town of La Grange, east of Tunnel City, to the City of Sparta. The project.

The presence of the state endangered phlox moth (Schinia indiana) and state endangered slender glass lizard (Ophisaurus attenuatus) have been confirmed in the vicinity of the project site. DNR staff determined that the proposed project may result in the incidental taking of some moths and lizards.

Department staff concluded that in both cases the proposed projects will minimize the impacts to the species by adhering to conservation measures; is not likely to jeopardize the continued existence and recovery of the state population of the species or the whole plant-animal community of which it is a part; and has benefit to the public health, safety or welfare that justifies the action.

The conservation measures to minimize the adverse effects on the endangered species will be incorporated into the proposed Incidental Take Authorization. Copies of the jeopardy assessment and background information on the Blanchard's cricket frog are available by searching the DNR website for incidental take public notice or upon request from Stacy Rowe (608-266-7012 stacy.rowe@wi.gov). The department is requesting comments from the public through January 10, 2019 regarding project-related impacts to the Blanchard's cricket frog. Public comments should be sent to Stacy Rowe, Wisconsin DNR, PO Box 7921, Madison, WI 53707-7921 or stacy.rowe@wi.gov.

Last Revised: Tuesday, December 11, 2018

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