Interagency Special Status /
Sensitive Species Program

Bureau of Land Management / US Forest Service
Oregon / Washington

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Interagency Special Status /
Sensitive Species Program

Bureau of Land Management / US Forest Service
Oregon / Washington

Conservation Planning

Spotted Owl

Caption: Spotted Owl

General Information

Management for sensitive species follows Forest Service Region 6 Sensitive Species Policy as identified in Forest Service Manual (FSM) Section 2670. Management of Oregon/Washington Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Special Status Species follows agency policy documented in the BLM Manual Section 6840.

Conservation Planning Tools are analysis of information documents intended as tools for field level biologists and botanists to utilize to help provide for the conservation of sensitive species.

For species and taxa-specific Conservation Planning Tools, use Search for Documents to query by common name, scientific name, or taxonomy.

Under Forest Service policy, agency botanists and biologists review programs and activities, through a Biological Evaluation, as part of the National Environmental Policy Act process, to determine potential effects on sensitive species. Proposed management actions "must not result in a loss of species viability or create significant trends toward Federal listing" (FSM 2670.32).

Under BLM policy, BLM Districts are responsible to assess, review and document the effects of a proposed action on Bureau Sensitive species. The effects of Bureau proposed actions are documented through a systematic, interdisciplinary evaluation following the decision making process as described in the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969. BLM Districts will also determine and document that District decisions would not contribute to the need to list Bureau Sensitivespecies under the Endangered Species Act.

In order to conduct these evaluations, agency personnel need to know species habitat requirements and distribution, assess likelihood of species occurrence, and assess the risk of impacts. This section provides "tools" that biologists and botanists can use (but are not required to use) to assist in determining what level of analysis should be completed in order to make an assessment of potential impacts from proposed management actions.

Some of our FS and BLM Sensitive and Strategic species may have had research conducted and science published by the U.S. Forest Service Research and Development. Publications and products can be found on the Pacific Northwest Research Station Publications and Products page, In order to find publications or products, the site offers the Treesearch system, Treesearch is an online system for sharing free, full text publications by Research and Development scientists in the U.S. Forest Service.Included in Treesearch are scholarly works published by the agency as well as those published by others, including papers appearing in journals, conference proceedings, or books. All publications appearing in Treesearch are based on peer reviewed research to make sure they provide the best scientific information possible. This science may also help with assessing effects to Sensitive species.


Washington State

The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife includes vertebrate conservation planning tools within their 2015 State Wildlife Action Plan (SWAP). The SWAP can be accessed on the following website, Included on this website are species facts sheets (Appendix A) and range and potential habitat distribution Maps (Appendix B) for specific mammals, birds, amphibians, reptiles, and fishes (Appendix B).

Washington's SWAP is a comprehensive plan for conserving the state's fish and wildlife and the natural habitats on which they depend. It is part of a nationwide effort by all 50 states and 5 U.S. territories to develop conservation action plans and participate in the State and Tribal Wildlife Grants (SWG) Program. The purpose of the SWG Program is to support state actions that broadly benefit wildlife and habitats, but particularly "Species of Greatest Conservation Need (SGCN)" as identified by each individual state.


The Oregon Explorer website, by Oregon State University, has an expansive wildlife portal that allows users to find out about the Oregon Conservation Strategy and access to a broad range of wildlife information for areas around the state. The “Oregon Wildlife Explorer” portal,, provides a single point of access for current and historic wildlife distribution maps, wildlife photos, local wildlife plans and other information.

As an example, if you select the link above, scroll down to Wildlife in Your Area (middle bottom), select on Launch the Wildlife Viewer. Select on the Species tab and type in any species. This brings up general information as well as a current and historic distribution map. Selecting either of the maps will enlarge them, but by copying them to a file and then opening the map with Microsoft photo editor (or similar) you can enlarge the picture to the general area you are interested in.

General Information

General Botany