The Oregon Connectivity Assessment and Mapping Project (OCAMP)

Wildlife like these elk face many impediments to movement, including fencing. Photo Credit: NPS

Project Summary

There is a critical need to develop connectivity maps for a broad array of Oregon’s wildlife species. Many species rely on the ability to move throughout the landscape to fulfill their daily and seasonal needs for access to food, shelter, and opportunities to reproduce. Human changes to the landscape often restrict the ability of wildlife to move by adding barriers, inducing changes in their behavior, impacting critical migration stopover sites, and increasing habitat fragmentation.

Mapping and maintaining movement corridors helps maintain population connectivity and biodiversity, aiding in the restoration of at-risk species. Providing and conserving habitat connectivity is also a key management strategy to preserve species and ecosystem processes under a changing climate. To date, efforts to map connected habitat corridors in Oregon have primarily been based on expert opinion that insufficiently supports decision-making regarding species’ mobility and habitat connectivity needs.

In 2016, a diverse group of stakeholders convened the Oregon Habitat Connectivity Consortium (OHCC), a group formed to promote functional natural landscape connectivity and to mitigate barriers to wildlife movement at multiple scales throughout Oregon and the surrounding region. Members of the OHCC include ODFW, Portland State University, ODOT, USFWS, USFS, BLM, The Nature Conservancy, Oregon Wildlife Foundation, Defenders of Wildlife, Burns Paiute Tribe, and Samara Group. The OHCC, led by ODFW, developed an implementation plan for how best to assess and map habitat connectivity for wildlife throughout Oregon.

The implementation plan will guide the execution of the Oregon Connectivity Assessment and Mapping Project (OCAMP), which began in early 2020. OCAMP is a multi-year, collaborative effort to analyze and map statewide wildlife habitat connectivity at fine resolutions for up to 60 species. OCAMP aims to link landscapes for wildlife by identifying current wildlife habitat connectivity throughout the state for a wide diversity of species, representing a variety of taxa, movement types, dispersal capabilities, and sensitivity to anthropogenic threats. These species’ connectivity models will then be complied to highlight priority wildlife corridors for all species in Oregon. The maps and models produced for OCAMP will aid in statewide planning and prioritization efforts to maintain functional habitat connectivity; help direct on-the-ground efforts for acquisition, restoration, and conservation of habitat for fish and wildlife; inform long-term planning documents for managed lands; guide granting efforts; inform land use development, including expansion of urban growth boundaries, permitting for renewable energy development, and development of sensitive habitats; and aid in mitigating transportation issues, such as identifying areas where wildlife passage structures could best reduce wildlife-vehicle collisions.

species

OCAMP species were selected using a collaborative process informed by species biologists and conservation practitioners across the state. All modeling will occur across each species’ range. While species were selected to represent specific habitat associations and/or structural habitat characteristics, each species utilizes multiple habitat types, and this will be reflected in the habitat and connectivity models.

 

Species Selected for OCAMP

SpeciesStrategy Species?TaxaSelected to RepresentAssociated Structural Habitat Characteristic(s)Species Range (by Ecoregion)
American BeaverNoMammalWetlandsWoody streamside vegetationCR, WV, KM, WC, EC, CP, BM, NBR
American PikaYesMammalAlpine Grasslands and Shrublands/Subalpine Parkland
Broken talusWC, EC, BM, NBR
Bighorn SheepYes (Rocky Mountain Subspecies)MammalDwarf Shrub-steppeAlpine meadows and rocky slopesEC, CP, BM, NBR
Black-tailed DeerNoMammalHabitat GeneralistCR, WV, KM, WC, EC
Black-tailed JackrabbitNoMammalShrub-steppeWV, KM, EC, CP, BM, NBR
Burrowing OwlYesBirdShrub-steppeLow, sparse vegetationCP, BM, NBR
Bushy-tailed WoodratNoMammalConifer-Hardwood ForestsRocky outcropsCR, WV, KM, WC, EC, CP, BM, NBR
Cascades FrogYesAmphibianAlpine Grasslands and Shrublands/Subalpine Parkland
WC, EC
Coastal Tailed FrogYesAmphibianMontane Mixed Conifer Forest
Headwater streamsCR, KM, WC, EC
Columbia Spotted FrogYesAmphibianOpen WaterBM, NBR
CougarNoMammalHabitat GeneralistCR, WV, KM, WC, EC, CP, BM, NBR
Fender's Blue ButterflyYesInvertebrateGrasslandsFloral resourcesWV
Ferruginous HawkYesBirdShrub-steppe/Dwarf Shrub-steppeEC, CP, BM, NBR
FisherYesMammalMontane Mixed Conifer ForestRequire large-diameter snags/cavity trees for denningCR, KM, WC
Foothill Yellow-legged FrogYesAmphibianSouthwest Oregon Mixed Conifer-Hardwood Forest
CR, KM, WC
Great Gray OwlYesBirdEastside (Interior) Mixed Conifer Forest
Montane meadowsKM, WC, EC, BM
Greater Sage-grouseYesBirdShrub-steppeEC, BM, NBR
Hermit ThrushNoBirdSouthwest Oregon Mixed Conifer-Hardwood Forest
CR, KM, WC, EC, BM
Hoary BatYesMammalEastside (Interior) Riparian-WetlandsCR, WV, KM, WC, EC, CP, BM, NBR
Lazuli BuntingNoBirdEastside (Interior) Riparian WetlandsCR, WV, KM, WC, EC, CP, BM, NBR
Lewis's WoodpeckerYesBirdWestside Oak and Dry Douglas-fir Forest and Woodlands
SnagsKM, WC, EC, CP, BM, NBR
Little Brown MyotisNoMammalPonderosa Pine WoodlandsCR, WV, KM, WC, EC, CP, BM, NBR
Long-nosed Leopard LizardNoReptileDesert Playa and Salt Scrub Shrublands
Scattered, sparse vegetation; sandy/gravel substrateNBR
Long-toed SalamanderNoAmphibianHerbaceous WetlandsCR, WV, KM, WC, EC, CP, BM, NBR
MartenYesMammal Late Successional Mixed Conifer ForestsAssociated with salal layer on coastCR, KM, WC, EC, BM
Morrison's Bumble BeeNoInvertebrateShrub-steppeFloral resourcesEC, NBR
Mountain GoatNoMammalAlpine Grasslands and Shrublands/Subalpine Parkland
BM
Mule DeerNoMammalHabitat GeneralistEC, CP, BM, NBR
North American PorcupineNoMammalAspen WoodlandsCR, WV, KM, WC, EC, CP, BM, NBR
Northern Alligator LizardNoReptileCeanothus-Manzanita Shrublands
Downed woody debris; rock pilesCR, WV, KM, WC
Northern Flying SquirrelNoMammal Late Successional Mixed Conifer ForestsInterconnected canopiesCR, WV, KM, WC, EC, BM
Northern Red-legged FrogYesAmphibian Late Successional Mixed Conifer ForestsAquatic-terrestrial linkageCR, WV, KM, WC
Ord's Kangaroo RatNoMammalShrub-steppeCP, BM, NBR
Oregon Slender SalamanderYesAmphibianWestside Riparian WetlandsLate-seral forestsWC
Oregon Vesper SparrowYesBirdEastside (Interior) GrasslandsWV, KM, EC, CP, BM, NBR
Pacific-slope FlycatcherNoBird Late Successional Mixed Conifer ForestsComplex canopy layersCR, WV, KM, WC, EC
Pileated WoodpeckerYesBirdSouthwest Oregon Mixed Conifer-Hardwood Forest
SnagsCR, WV, KM, WC, EC, BM
PronghornNoMammalShrub-steppeEC, CP, BM, NBR
Purple MartinYesBirdWestside Lowlands Conifer-Hardwood ForestEarly seral habitats; snagsCR, WV, KM, WC
Pygmy RabbitYesMammalShrub-steppeEC, BM, NBR
Red-naped SapsuckerNoBirdAspen WoodlandsWC, EC, CP, BM, NBR
Rocky Mountain ElkNoMammalHabitat GeneralistEC, CP, BM, NBR
Roosevelt ElkNoMammalHabitat GeneralistUse clear-cuts/ag landsCR, WV, KM, WC, EC
Sierra Nevada Red FoxYesMammalMontane Mixed Conifer Forest
WC, EC
Slender-billed White-breasted NuthatchYesBirdOak WoodlandsWV, KM, EC, BM
Townsend's ChipmunkNoMammalConifer-Hardwood ForestsUse clear-cutsCR, WV, KM, WC, EC
Western Bumble BeeYesInvertebrateMixed WoodlandsFloral resourcesWC, EC
Western Gray SquirrelYesMammalWestside Lowlands Conifer-Hardwood ForestCR, WV, KM, WC, EC
Western MeadowlarkYesBirdEastside (Interior) GrasslandsWV, KM, EC, CP, BM, NBR
Western Pond TurtleYesReptileOpen WaterCR, WV, KM, WC, EC
Western RattlesnakeYesReptileWestside Lowlands Conifer-Hardwood Forest
CR, WV, KM, WC, EC, CP, BM, NBR
Western Snowy PloverYesBirdCoastal DunesCR, NBR
Western ToadYesAmphibianMontane Coniferous WetlandsCR, KM, WC, EC, CP, BM, NBR
WrentitNoBirdOak WoodlandsDense shrub layersCR, KM, WC

chipmunk full

upcoming events

Check back for updates on upcoming OCAMP events

 

engage with us

The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife is seeking engagement and participation in OCAMP from additional experts and practitioners during in this three-year project. Interested in providing information about selected species, helping with model parameterization, or just staying up-to-date on OCAMP progress? Please consider lending your support by participating in one or more of the following groups:

OCAMP Network

Sign up to receive periodic emails on project progress, along with notices of upcoming opportunities to attend webinars and other events. Project updates will be sent to subscribers approximately every 6 months for the duration of the project, through December 2022. Join the OCAMP Network here.

Species Experts 

If you have expertise and knowledge about Oregon’s wildlife, you are invited to participate in our Species Experts group. The 54 species we have selected for assessment represent a wide variety of taxa, movement and dispersal capabilities, sensitivity to barriers, and habitat associations. The Species Experts group will be asked for assistance identifying published literature, ongoing studies, occurrence and movement data, and information on habitat use and drivers of movement behavior to help parameterize and validate habitat suitability and connectivity models for our selected species. Requests for input will be made periodically through 2022.  You can join the Species Experts group here.

Practitioners

If you can utilize the final connectivity mapping products for your mission, planning, and/or business operations, please consider providing feedback on data needs, product accessibility, interpretability, and formatting. We will be requesting feedback starting in summer 2020, with product review requests expected in Fall of 2022. If you’d like to join the OCAMP Practitioners group, sign up here.

Stakeholder Committee

Individuals and entities that have a vested interest in OCAMP processes and outcomes are invited to participate in quarterly project progress reviews, provide feedback, and help support and promote OCAMP initiatives and products. Sign up to participate on the OCAMP Stakeholder Committee here

 

Contact us!