ILLINOIS NATURE PRESERVES COMMISSION AGENDA

ONE HUNDRED SIXTY-SIXTH MEETING

Illinois State Library
300 South Second Street
Conference Room 403
Springfield, IL 62701
February 1, 2000 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 165th Meeting, October 26, 1999

Item 4: Next Meeting Schedule

2 May - Crystal Lake Park District, Crystal Lake

1 August - Lexington Community Center, Lexington

31 October - Pere Marquette State Park Lodge, Grafton

Item 5: INPC Staff REPORT                               

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

Item 6: IDNR Staff REPORT                               

REPORT                               
Todd Strole
IDNR, Division of Natural Heritage

Item 7:* Clark Co. - Miller's Rocky Branch Land and Water Reserve, Registration

Miller's Rocky Branch, located in east central Illinois near the town of Marshall, is recognized by the Illinois Natural Areas Inventory (INAI #1417) for its high quality mesic upland forest and sandstone cliff community representative of the Effingham Plain Section of the Southern Till Plain Natural Division. D. Paul and Anna B. Miller propose to register a 107-acre tract that contains dry mesic and mesic upland forest, an outstanding sandstone cliff community, and several small areas of former cropland that are being reforested. The West Fork of Big Creek flows through the proposed reserve and biologically links it to Rocky Branch Nature Preserve which lies 1 mile downstream of Miller's Rocky Branch. Mr. and Mrs. Miller propose to register this area as Miller's Rocky Branch for a period of 10 years. The registration will automatically renew at the end of each 10-year period unless the owners, by unanimous consent, send a written notice of termination at least 6 months prior to the end of any 10-year period. The Millers have protected Miller's Rocky Branch as a Natural Heritage Landmark since 1997.

REPORT                                  ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Mary Kay Solecki                     Registration Approval
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 8:* Wayne Co. - Padgett Pin Oak Woods Land and Water Reserve, Registration

The proposed 158-acre Padgett Pin Oak Woods Land and Water Reserve, located in southeastern Illinois near Olney, is owned by James L. and June Padgett. The proposed reserve provides riparian buffer for a nearly one-half mile segment of the Little Wabash River, a biologically significant stream (INAI #1156). Eighty-two species of fish, 47 species of mussels, and 19 species of crustaceans are known from the Little Wabash River drainage. State-endangered species found in the Little Wabash River basin include the little spectacle case mussel (Villosa lienosa), purple lilliput mussel (Toxolasma lividus), pyramid pigtoe mussel (Pleurobema rubrum), and Indiana crayfish (Orconectes indianensis). State-threatened species include the spike mussel (Elliptio dilata) and the redspotted sunfish (Lepomis miniatus). The crayfish (Orconectes stannardi) is found only in the Little Wabash River. The proposed reserve contains 86.2 acres of bottomland forest of the Bottomlands Section of the Wabash Border Natural Division and 71.8 acres of grassland. Open woodland and prairie restorations are planned for the grassland areas. Allowable uses include hiking, nature observation and study, photography, scientific research, hunting, and fishing. The family is requesting that an existing unimproved road, hiking trails, and primitive campsite be permitted within the reserve. The owners also wish to retain the mineral rights to the tract.

REPORT                                  ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Bob Edgin                                 Registration Approval
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 9:* Macoupin Co. - Roderick Prairie Nature Preserve, Dedication

Roderick Prairie near Carlinville is owned by Don and Trish Roderick. The proposed preserve is an approximately 6-acre tract consisting of Roderick Barrens Natural Area (INAI #1561) plus adjacent woodlands. Roderick Barrens contains healthy populations of the state-endangered large ground plum (Astragalus crassicarpus var. trichocalyx) and state-threatened prairie trout lily (Erythronium mesochoreum). This site also contains an extremely high diversity of prairie plants, including many conservative species. In addition, the intact barrens community present at the site, which was once very common in Illinois, is now very rare. The barrens community is an example of the presettlement barrens of the Carlinville Section of the Western Forest-Prairie Natural Division. A high proportion of gravelly material in the soil adds to the uniqueness of this site. The INPC staff recommends preliminary Approval of Roderick Prairie as an Illinois Nature Preserve.

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

Item 10:* McHenry Co. - Gene & Katharine Barnes Addition to Elizabeth Lake Nature Preserve, Dedication

Mrs. Katharine Barnes wishes to formally preserve 45 acres of adjacent uplands as the Gene & Katharine Barnes Addition to Elizabeth Lake Nature Preserve. Of that total, 12.5 acres are proposed for dedication as nature preserve, while the balance (32.5 acres) is proposed for dedication as nature preserve buffer. Elizabeth Lake, located near Richmond, is a 172.6-acre Nature Preserve that is owned by the McHenry County Conservation District (MCCD). Elizabeth Lake was included on the INAI (#1014) in recognition of extant high-quality wetland communities (pond, marsh, graminoid bog, graminoid fen, and calcareous floating mat). Nine state-listed plant species have been documented from the site. The MCCD Natural Areas Inventory published in 1998 recognizes extant high-quality sedge meadow wetland communities and reveals the presence of 10 state-listed animal species. The Illinois Nature Preserves Commission conferred final Approval for dedication of 115.8 acres of Elizabeth Lake at its 102nd Meeting in January, 1985 (Resolution #829). In May, 1988, at its 118th Meeting, the Commission conferred final Approval for a 56.8-acre addition (Resolution #970). On behalf of Mrs. Katharine Barnes, the staff of the Illinois Nature Preserves Commission recommends the dedication of this 45-acre tract known as the Gene & Katharine Barnes Addition to Elizabeth Lake Nature Preserve. Dedication of this addition will protect mature oak woodlands and important groundwater recharge zones for the groundwater dependent wetlands surviving in Elizabeth Lake Nature Preserve and increase the size of the preserve from172.6 to approximately 218 acres.

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

Item 11:* McHenry Co. - Lake Defiance Addition to Kettle Moraine Nature Preserve, Dedication

The Illinois Department of Natural Resources proposes for dedication the Lake Defiance Addition to Kettle Moraine Nature Preserve. This 62.4-acre addition lies within the boundaries of the INAI for Kettle Moraine Natural Area (#1012) which was recognized for extant high-quality calcareous floating mat, graminoid fen, low shrub bog, marsh, pond, and sedge meadow communities representative of the Morainal Section of the Northeastern Morainal Natural Division. In addition, the INAI recorded 22 state-listed endangered or threatened species. Kettle Moraine Nature Preserve and the proposed addition are located within Moraine Hills State Park near the town of McHenry. Kettle Moraine Nature Preserve was granted preliminary Approval for dedication at the Commission's 50th Meeting in January, 1974 (Resolution #321) and final Approval was granted at the Commission's 53rd Meeting in October, 1974 (Resolution #350). Preservation of this proposed addition is consistent with good preserve design recommendations, will allow the IDNR to manage the wetland basin as one unit, preserve wetland resources considered of state-wide ecological significance, and will protect the wetland from incompatible land uses. The Illinois Nature Preserves Commission and the Illinois Department of Natural Resources recommend dedication of the 62.4-acre Lake Defiance Addition to Kettle Moraine Nature Preserve.

REPORT                                ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
John Arient                              Preliminary Approval for Dedication
IDNR, Division of Land Management

Steven Byers
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 12:* Cook Co. - Sundrop Prairie Nature Preserve, Dedication

The Illinois Chapter of The Nature Conservancy owns approximately 80 acres of mesic and wet-mesic prairie and sedge meadow complex known as Sundrop Prairie. The prairie and sedge meadow, located in Markham, is representative of the original vegetation of the Chicago Lake Plain Section of the Northeastern Morainal Natural Division. The site received preliminary Approval for dedication at the Commission's 145th Meeting in October, 1994 (Resolution #1249). This large prairie is one island in an archipelago of prairies known collectively as the Indian Boundary Prairies. The other prairies include Gensburg-Markham Prairie Nature Preserve, Paintbrush Prairie Nature Preserve, and Dropseed Prairie Nature Preserve. Although Sundrop Prairie was not identified on the original INAI, it is CONSIDERED

an important and integral part of the Indian Boundary Prairies. The site supports a high-quality sedge meadow with a rich assemblage of plants (over 230 native plant species). Due to its relatively large size, Sundrop Prairie attracts several grassland nesting birds and habitat restricted insects. The Nature Conservancy and the Illinois Nature Preserves Commission staff recommend final Approval for dedication of 80 acres of Sundrop Prairie as an Illinois Nature Preserve.

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

Item 13:* Edwards Co. - Beadles Barrens Nature Preserve, Dedication

Roger and Vivian Beadles propose to dedicate Beadles Barrens Nature Preserve, a 5.0-acre natural area that has been in their family since 1866. The site, located in southeastern Illinois near Albion, contains a dry-mesic barrens that was recognized by the INAI (#1547) as a Grade C best-of-its-kind community and a population of the state-threatened blazing star (Liatris scariosa var. Nieuwlandii). If approved for dedication, Beadles Barrens Nature Preserve will be the first nature preserve in Edwards County, and the first community of this type in the Mount Vernon Hill Country Section of the Southern Till Plain Natural Division to be legally protected through perpetuity. The INPC conferred preliminary Approval for dedication of this site at its 165th Meeting on October 26, 1999 (Resolution #1507).

REPORT                                ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Bob Edgin                                Final Approval for Dedication
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 14:* Monroe Co. - William A. DeMint Memorial Hill Prairie Nature Preserve, Dedication

Dr. William Bowles proposes to dedicate the William A. DeMint Memorial Hill Prairie, a 28-acre portion of the 429-acre Prairie du Rocher Herpetological Area INAI site (INAI # 938). The proposed nature preserve, located in southwestern Illinois, contains Grade C loess hill prairie, Grade A limestone cliff community, and Grade C dry and dry-mesic upland forest representative of the Northern Section of the Ozark Natural Division. This matrix of habitats is home to a variety of rare, threatened, and endangered plant and animal species, many of which are Ozark plateau or western plains species and have restricted ranges in Illinois. These include the Great Plains rat snake (Elaphe guttata emoryi), and the flathead snake ( Tantilla gracilis), both Illinois threatened species; the coachwhip (Masticophis flagellum flagellum), a state-endangered species and the rare "Plains" scorpion (Centruroides vittatus). Western species such as stickleaf (Mentzelia oligosperma), and Plains prickly-pear cactus (Opuntia macrorhiza) are present on the proposed nature preserve. The state-threatened timber rattlesnake (Crotalus horridus) has also been documented in the INAI site. The William A. DeMint Memorial Hill Prairie is located approximately one-quarter of a mile southeast of the recently dedicated Brickey-Gonterman Memorial Hill Prairie Nature Preserve.

REPORT                                ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Debbie Newman                     Final Approval for Dedication
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 15:* Chicago Wilderness Biodiversity Recovery Plan, Approval of Plan

REPORT                                ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED
Carolyn Grosboll                     Approval of Plan
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 16: Lake Co. - Illinois Beach Nature Preserve and North Dunes Nature Preserve - Update on Asbestos Investigations and Remediation

REPORT                               
Randy Heidorn
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 17: Public Comment Period (3 minutes per person)

Item 18: Other Business

Item 19: Adjournment