The Forest Service is leading an effort to prepare a Conservation Strategy for the California spotted owl (CSO). The strategy will help conserve and sustain the CSO population in the Sierra Nevada/Cascade region.
This strategy will be useful not only to the Forest Service, but also to other land management agencies and researchers.
Our goal is to complete the strategy in fall 2017.
The CSO has long been a species of conservation focus in the Pacific Southwest Region, with the species having been designated as a Forest Service Sensitive Species in the late 1970s. In July 1992, the Pacific Southwest Research Station published The California Spotted Owl: A Technical Assessment of Its Current Status which provided the scientific foundation for conserving the species for the last 23 years. Since the publication of that report, a great deal of scientific information and management experience have developed that warrant a renewed look at the best means of conserving the California spotted owl. Given the importance of species conservation to the development of revised Forest Plans, a new Conservation Strategy for the CSO can help guide the current revision of Forest Plans in the Sierra Nevada.
Current Project Status
The Pacific Southwest Research Station has completed preparation of a Conservation Assessment and it is awaiting final publication. In the meantime, the pre-publication draft has now been posted (see materials below). This Assessment provides essential scientific information to support the development of the Conservation Strategy. We also have a very early draft of the Framework for the Conservation Strategy, and we received input and feedback on the information developed so far at a working meeting on September 22nd (see below). We are currently working to incorporate feedback and to partner with our sister Agencies to develop next steps.