ILLINOIS NATURE PRESERVES COMMISSION AGENDA

ONE HUNDRED SIXTY-FIRST MEETING
Camp Wokanda Lodge
620 Boy Scout Road
Mossville, Illinois

October 27, 1998 10:00 A.M.

*Documentary Material Enclosed

Item 1: Call to Order, Roll Call, and Introduction of Attendees

Item 2:* Adoption of Agenda

Item 3:* Approval of Minutes of 160th Meeting, August 4, 1998

Item 4: 1999 Proposed Meeting Schedule and Locations

2 February - Illinois State Library, Springfield

4 May - Volo Bog State Natural Area, Ingleside

3 August - Vermilion County Conservation District, Danville

26 October - Cahokia Mounds State Historic Site, Collinsville

Item 5: INPC Staff Report

REPORT
Carolyn Grosboll, Don McFall and Randy Heidorn
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 6: IDNR Staff Report

REPORT
Carl Becker
IDNR, Division of Natural Heritage

Item 7: IDNR, Office of Resource Conservation Reorganization

REPORT
Kirby Cottrell
Office Director

Item 8:* Johnson and Pulaski Co. - Cache River Land and Water Reserve, Registration

The proposed reserve includes 9,274.89 acres in Johnson and Pulaski counties that are within the watershed of the Cache River in extreme southern Illinois. The land to be included is present within the 11,768-acre Cache River State Natural Area which is owned and managed by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources. The areas excluded from the reserve are the Cache River Headquarters (40 acres), Heron Pond-Little Black Slough Nature Preserve (1,939 acres), Section 8 Woods Nature Preserve (326.8 acres), the proposed Cache River Visitor Center (95.1 acres), and the Cache River-Tunnel Hill State Trail (92.21 acres). The communities along the Cache River that are within the proposed reserve are: pond, wet floodplain forest, mesic and dry-mesic upland forest, limestone glade, and sandstone cliff. Over 20 unique plant communities are found within the Cache River basin, as well as a large number of rare plant and animal species. The wetlands along the Cache River have been recognized as "Wetlands of International Importance", placing them with such well known sites as the Florida Everglades and the Okefenokee Swamp.

REPORT                                                                  ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Mark Guetersloh                                                       Registration Approval
IDNR, Division of Natural Heritage

Judy Faulkner
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 9:* Johnson and Union Co. -- Cypress Pond Land and Water Reserve, Registration

This proposed reserve consists of 310.7 acres in Johnson and Union counties within the Coastal Plain Natural Division. The site contains a swamp community, consisting of tupelo (Nyssa aquatica), buttonbush (Cephalanthus occidentalis), Virginia willow (Itea virginica), and bald cypress (Taxodium distichum), and is known to contain one of the largest and the northernmost stands of cypress-tupelo in Illinois. In addition to the swamp, the site also contains wet floodplain forest comprised of pin oak (Quercus palustris), swamp white oak (Quercus bicolor), kingnut hickory (Carya laciniosa), and sweet gum (Liquidamber styraciflua). The site was identified by the Illinois Natural Areas Inventory (INAI #62) as a high quality cypress-tupelo swamp. The site is owned and managed as a satellite of Ferne Clyffe State Park by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources.

REPORT                                                                  ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Bob Lindsay                                                              Registration Approval
IDNR, Division of Natural Heritage

Item 10:* McHenry Co. - Knox Farm Addition to Wheeler Fen Land and Water Reserve, Registration

The proposed Knox Farm Addition to Wheeler Fen Land and Water Reserve, owned by Albert Enterprises, Inc. is a 1.26-acre tract. Wheeler Fen is a 26.4-acre mosaic of graminoid fen, sedge meadow, and uplands located within the Morainal Section of the Northeastern Morainal Natural Division of Illinois and was granted approval for registration as an Illinois Land and Water Reserve by the Illinois Nature Preserves Commission at its 158th Meeting in February, 1998 (Resolution #1397). Wheeler Fen Land and Water Reserve is owned in part by the City of McHenry (17.8 acres) and McHenry County (8.6 acres). Preservation of Wheeler Fen will protect a rare graminoid fen community located in Illinois' most rapidly developing county. Two state-threatened plant species have been recorded on the site and include the early fen sedge (Carex crawei) and the common yellow lake sedge (Carex rostrata var. utriculata). The INPC staff recommends that the 1.26 acres identified in the proposal for registration be granted approval as an addition to Wheeler Fen Land & Water Reserve.

REPORT                                                                  ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Steven Byers                                                             Registration Approval
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 11:* St. Clair Co. - DesPain Wetlands Land and Water Reserve, Registration

DesPain Wetlands is a 164.5-acre parcel consisting of 50 acres of reconstructed wetlands, surrounded by reconstructed prairie, reforested flatwoods, bottomland and upland woods, and remnant forest. The wetlands, while fairly new, already support large numbers of migrating shorebirds and waterfowl, and have been used regularly during the breeding season for foraging by state-endangered waders such as the little blue heron (Egretta caerulea) and snowy egret (Egretta thula) . The state-threatened pied-billed grebe (Podilymbus podiceps) has been documented nesting at the site. A variety of herpetofauna have also already been documented using the site. The DesPain property is adjacent to the 2,000-acre Peabody River King State Fish and Wildlife Area, and is 2/3 of a mile south of the 18,000-acre Kaskaskia River State Fish and Wildlife Area. The owners, Douglas and Rebecca DesPain and David and Susan DesPain, are proposing registration as a site of unusual concentrations of wildlife.

REPORT                                                                  ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Debbie S. Newman                                                   Registration Approval
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 12:* Cook Co. - Addition to Gensburg-Markham Prairie Nature Preserve, Dedication

The Nature Conservancy proposes to dedicated 54 lots (approximately 5.1 acres) as an addition to Gensburg-Markham Prairie Nature Preserve. The proposed addition is located within the designated boundary of the Illinois Natural Areas Inventory (INAI #400) for Gensburg-Markham Prairie as well as the boundary established for Gensburg-Markham Prairie National Natural Landmark. A preservation strategy for this site was first articulated in a Master Plan approved by the Illinois Nature Preserves Commission at its 95th Meeting in August, 1983 (Resolution #75), which called for protection of the prairie extending north and south of Gensburg-Markham Nature Preserve. Gensburg-Markham Prairie Nature Preserve is part of an archipelago of four prairies that are collectively referred to as the Indian Boundary Prairies, surviving remnants of the vast prairie that once extended for miles along Lake Michigan and the Lake Plain Section of old Lake Chicago. Both the INPC staff and The Nature Conservancy recommend that the 5.1 acres identified in the proposal for dedication be granted preliminary approval for dedication as an addition to Gensburg-Markham Prairie Nature Preserve.

REPORT                                                                  ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Steven Byers                                                             Preliminary Approval for Dedication
Nature Preserves Commission

Jeff Powers
The Nature Conservancy

Item 13:* Cook Co. -- Addition to Proposed Paintbrush Prairie Nature Preserve, Dedication

The Nature Conservancy proposes to dedicate 10.1 acres as an addition to Paintbrush Prairie. Approximately 60 acres of Paintbrush Prairie was conferred preliminary approval by the Illinois Nature Preserves Commission at its145th Meeting in October, 1994 (Resolution #1248). At the Commission's 148th Meeting in August, 1995 (Resolution #1281), the Commission conferred preliminary approval for dedication of a key 8-acre addition. Neither tract, however, has been conferred final approval for dedication as an Illinois Nature Preserve. This proposal provides for preliminary approval to dedicate an additional 10.1 acres. Paintbrush Prairie is one of four prairies located in the City of Markham, Illinois that are collectively referred to as the Indian Boundary Prairies. The other prairies are Gensburg-Markham Prairie Nature Preserve, Sundrop Prairie, and Dropseed Prairie. Aside from the collective importance of this archipelago of prairies, Paintbrush Prairie supports over 200 plant species, including the state-listed eared false foxglove (Tomanthera auriculata). The early fen sedge (Carex crawei), which also occurs at Paintbrush Prairie, was recently removed from the Checklist of threatened and endangered animals and plants of Illinois. Both the INPC staff and The Nature Conservancy recommend that the 10.1 acres identified in the proposal for dedication be granted preliminary approval for dedication as an addition to Paintbrush Prairie.

REPORT                                                                  ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Steven Byers                                                             Preliminary Approval for Dedication
Nature Preserves Commission

Jeff Powers
The Nature Conservancy

Item 14:* Henry Co. -- Mineral Marsh Nature Preserve, Dedication

This 230-acre natural area in Henry County, within the Green River Lowlands, is owned and managed by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources. The site contains sand prairie and semi-permanent ponds that are surrounded by marsh and wet sand prairie. The site was recognized by the Illinois Natural Areas Inventory (INAI #1103) as a category II site because of the presence of endangered species, including one of the largest populations of the Illinois mud turtle (Kinosternon flavescens) in the Midwest. The site contains dry/dry mesic sand prairie, dry sand savanna, and wet sand prairie and marsh communities.

REPORT                                                                  ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Anne Mankowski                                                      Preliminary Approval for Dedication
IDNR, Division of Natural Heritage

Item 15:* Madison Co. -- Kemp and Cora Hutchinson Bird Sanctuary Addition of Buffer to John M. Olin Nature Preserve, Dedication

Great Rivers Land Trust and The Nature Institute propose to dedicate the 42.38-acre Kemp and Cora Hutchinson Bird Sanctuary as nature preserve buffer to the Olin Nature Preserve. The site is a key parcel in the watershed of one of Olin's primary streams. The site was donated to Great Rivers Land Trust (GRLT) by Tom Hutchinson in honor of his parents, Kemp and Cora. GRLT is placing a conservation easement on the property, and will eventually gift the land to The Nature Institute, who are the owners of Olin Nature Preserve. A complex of adjoining lands in the area, including Olin Nature Preserve, Mississippi Sanctuary Nature Preserve and Oblate Fathers' Woods Nature Preserve comprise a total of 350.7 acres. This addition will increase the amount of contiguous preserved land to 393 acres. The preservation of the parcel, which is currently part forested and part agriculture, will prevent further residential development encroachment on the established bald eagle winter roost (Haliaeetus leucocephalus) on the Olin Preserve. It will also preserve habitat for the state-threatened timber rattlesnake (Crotalus horridus), which has been observed multiple times less than 300 feet from the border of the Hutchinson Bird Sanctuary parcel.

REPORT                                                                  ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Debbie S. Newman                                                   Preliminary Approval for Dedication
Nature Preserves Commission

Wayne Freeman
Great Rivers Land Trust

Item 16:* Marshall Co. - Addition to Hopewell Hill Prairies Nature Preserve, Dedication

Hopewell Hill Prairies Nature Preserve is an approximately 1.26-acre tract within the 78-acre Hopewell Estates Hill Prairies Natural Area (INAI #231). Owned by Maury Brucker and Emiko Yang, this nature preserve is located along the Illinois River bluffs about 18 miles northeast of Peoria in Marshall County in the Village of Hopewell. Ms. Yang proposes to dedicate approximately 0.74 acres on an adjacent lot (#116), of which she is the sole owner, as an addition to Hopewell Hill Prairies Nature Preserve (lot #117). The rare Schreber's aster (Aster schreberi) has been found in the woodlands of the proposed preserve addition, and Grade A glacial drift hill prairie openings containing several conservative plant species including lead plant (Amorpha canadensis) and prairie dropseed (Sporobolus heterolepis) occur here. Prairie openings on the site have greatly improved as a result of recent restoration management by Mr. Brucker and Ms. Yang. A Wildlife Preservation Fund grant of $1,000.00 is being used to conduct a professional botanical survey on the dedicated nature preserve and proposed addition, the results of which will help to guide further management. The staff of the Illinois Nature Preserves Commission recommends preliminary approval of the 0.74-acre tract on lot #116 as an addition to Hopewell Hill Prairies Nature Preserve.

REPORT                                                                  ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Tom Lerczak                                                             Preliminary Approval for Dedication
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 17:* Pike Co. - Twin Culvert Cave Nature Preserve, Dedication

Twin Culvert Cave consists of a 5-acre tract owned by The Nature Conservancy which includes the entrance and a portion of the passageway of a Grade A limestone solution cavern. At the Illinois Nature Preserves Commission's 37th Meeting (Resolution #184), "approval for dedication in principal" was granted for Twin Culvert Cave. Preliminary approval for dedication of the site was granted at the Commission's 53rd Meeting (Resolution #357). Twin Culvert Cave is unique in its developmental process and contains exceptional cave features. The cave serves as a migratory resting place for the federally-endangered gray bat (Myotis grisescens). A subterranean lagoon and other spring fed water sources within the cave provide habitat for rare and outstanding cave invertebrates such asa cave dwelling amphipod (Bactrurus brachycaudus), a rare Illinois endemic millipede (Erodesmus remingtoni), cave millipede (Tingupa pallida), and an undescribed dipluran insect (Eumesocampa sp.). Dedication as an Illinois Nature Preserve will help preserve the cavern for use by rare and endangered fauna and will result in the establishment of the first nature preserve within the Driftless Section of the Middle Mississippi Border Natural Division of Illinois.

REPORT                                                                  ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Angella Moorehouse                                                 Preliminary Approval for Dedication
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 18:* Vermilion Co. -- Jordan Creek of the North Fork Nature Preserve, Dedication

The Outdoor Heritage Foundation proposes to dedicate a 0.97-mile long segment of Jordan Creek, a tributary of the North Fork of the Vermilion River as an Illinois Nature Preserve. The site is located about 15 miles north of Danville in the Grand Prairie Section of the Grand Prairie Natural Division. The proposed preserve is a 0.97-mile long segment of Jordan Creek and a 200-foot wide strip on either side of the centerline of the creek, totaling about 46.8 acres. An additional 231.7 acres of former pasture and forest is proposed as buffer. Jordan Creek is recognized as an outstanding example of the streams of the Wabash-Ohio river watershed. Five state-endangered mussels occur in the creek at this site. These are the slippershell (Alasmidonta viridis), wavy-rayed lampmussel (Lampsilis fasciola), purple lilliput (Toxolasma lividus), rainbow (Villosa iris), and little spectaclecase (Villosa lienosa). In addition, the state-endangered red-shouldered hawk (Buteo lineatus) and northern harrier (Circus cyaneus) have been observed in the proposed preserve.

REPORT                                                                  ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Mary Kay Solecki                                                     Preliminary Approval for Dedication
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 19:* Cook Co. -- Addition to Gensburg-Markham Prairie Nature Preserve, Dedication

The Illinois Nature Preserves Commission conferred preliminary approval for dedication of eight additional lots (approximately 0.67 acres) as an addition to Gensburg-Markham Prairie Nature Preserve at its 160th Meeting on August 4, 1998 (Resolution #1430). The Natural Land Institute seeks final approval for dedication of these eight additional lots. The additions are located within the designated boundary of the Illinois Natural Areas Inventory (INAI #400) for Gensburg-Markham Prairie as well as the boundary established for the Gensburg-Markham Prairie National Natural Landmark. A preservation strategy for this site was first articulated in a Master Plan approved by the Commission at its 95th Meeting in August, 1983 (Resolution #75), which called for protection of the prairie extending north and south of Gensburg-Markham Prairie Nature Preserve. Gensburg-Markham Prairie Nature Preserve is part of an archipelago of four prairies that are collectively referred to as the Indian Boundary Prairies, surviving remnants of the vast prairie that once extended for miles along Lake Michigan and the Lake Plain Section of old Lake Chicago. The INPC staff recommends that the 0.67 acres identified in the Instrument of Dedication be granted final approval for dedication as an addition to Gensburg-Markham Prairie Nature Preserve.

REPORT                                                                  ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Steven Byers                                                             Final Approval for Dedication
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 20:* McHenry Co. -- Wilson Tract Addition of Buffer to Pistakee Bog Nature Preserve, Dedication

The Illinois Nature Preserves Commission conferred preliminary approval for dedication of 31.47 acres as buffer to Pistakee Bog Nature Preserve at its 160th Meeting on August 4, 1998 (Resolution #1432). This 31.47-acre parcel was purchased by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources in January, 1998 with funding from the Illinois Natural Areas Acquisition Fund and CorLands. Pistakee Bog received final approval for dedication at the Commission's 55th Meeting in April, 1975 (Resolution #378). This buffer serves as an important recharge zone for Pistakee Bog Nature Preserve. Remnant marsh, sedge meadow, and mesic prairie communities on the Wilson tract are hydrologically connected to the Pistakee basin via a wide band of hydric soils. Pistakee Bog Nature Preserve contains high-quality tamarack bog, marsh, pond, sedge meadow, and calcareous floating mat communities. Both Pistakee Bog Nature Preserve and nearby Volo Bog Nature Preserve are located in the Volo Bog State Natural Area. Both the Illinois Department of Natural Resources and INPC staff recommend final approval of this 31.47-acre parcel as buffer to Pistakee Bog Nature Preserve.

REPORT                                                                  ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Amy Horstman                                                          Final Approval for Dedication
IDNR, Division of Natural Heritage

Steven Byers
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 21:* Will Co. -- Hitts Siding Prairie Nature Preserve, Dedication

Hitts Siding Prairie is owned and managed by Illinois Department of Natural Resources. The site is 261.3 acres in size and contains high quality examples of mesic/wet mesic prairie, wet prairie, mesic sand prairie, marsh, mesic sand savanna, and sedge meadow. Fifty-seven acres of this site were recognized by the Illinois Natural Areas Inventory (INAI #1047) as a natural area of statewide significance. Four state-listed species are present on this site, including the rattlesnake-master borer moth (Papaipema eryngii), grass pink orchid (Calopogon tuberous), ear-leafed foxglove (Tomanthera auriculata), and the red-veined prairie leafhopper (Aflexia rubranura). The Illinois Nature Preserves Commission conferred preliminary approval for dedication of this site at its 157 th Meeting on October 28, 1997 (Resolution # 1385).

REPORT                                                                  ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Bill Glass                                                                   Final Approval for Dedication
IDNR, Division of Natural Heritage

Item 22:* Cook Co. -- Bluff Spring Fen Nature Preserve - Request to Delegate Authority to Deputy Director for Stewardship to Review and Approve Proposal to Re-contour Landscape

Bluff Spring Fen Nature Preserve was conferred final approval for dedication at the Commission's 112th and 116th Meetings in recognition of extant high-quality graminoid fen, sedge meadow, and calcareous seep wetland communities. The boundary of this preserve, as presented in the proposal for dedication, encompassed two gravel pit lakes. Subsequently, re-contouring occurred in 1990 that included pushing an earthen berm and overburden into one of the gravel pit lakes. In addition, prairie sod was transplanted to Bluff Spring Fen Nature Preserve shortly after with a special permit issued by the Illinois Nature Preserves Commission to do so. At INPC's 151st Meeting in May, 1996, the Commission adopted a resolution stating that "...the Commission set policy on management, approving management in general terms, especially the first few times an activity is done, and then the staff would apply that (policy) to other sites" (Resolution #1318). Given that re-contouring, or extensive earthmoving activities, has occurred only very infrequently in nature preserves and given the guidance provided in the above-referenced resolution regarding approved management activities, the Commission staff request that the Illinois Nature Preserves Commission delegate authority to the Deputy Director for Stewardship to review and approve additional earthmoving activities at Bluff Spring Fen Nature Preserve.

REPORT                                                                  ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Steven Byers                                                             Approval to delegate authority to Deputy
Nature Preserves Commission                                   Director for Stewardship to review and
Randy Heidorn                                                          approve re-contouring
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 23: Lake Co. - Illinois Beach Nature Preserve & North Dunes Nature Preserve, Update on Asbestos Investigations and Remediation

REPORT
Randy Heidorn
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 24: Johnson Co.--Heron Pond-Little Black Slough Nature Preserve, Update on Erosion Control

REPORT
Randy Heidorn
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 25: Public Comment Period (3 minutes per person )

Item 26: Other Business

Item 27: Adjournment