San Diego County Rare Plant Monitoring Project Coordination
CBI and AECOM Technical Services, Inc. are coordinating and implementing regional rare plant monitoring in San Diego County to determine status, threats, and management actions for 27 highly restricted rare plants. This work is in partnership with the San Diego Association of Governments (SANDAG), San Diego Management and Monitoring Program (SDMMP), U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), and San Diego County land managers. Many of these rare plant species are declining due to invasive plants, small population size, or other threats. For some species, status or presence of one or more populations are unknown. Thus, key objectives of the program are to (1) determine current status, (2) document threats and vulnerabilities, and (3) identify appropriate management to ensure long-term species persistence.
CBI worked with project partners to test and refine the Management Strategic Plan (MSP) Inspect and Manage (IMG) rare plant monitoring protocol and data collection methods in 2014 and 2015, and we continue to refine the program, as necessary. Currently, CBI trains land managers and other participants in the IMG protocol method at workshops and in the field, conducts rare plant surveys across the county, compiles and manages survey data, and coordinates with project partners on all project components.
Regional monitoring data identify trends and priorities for management. Monitoring results guide land managers in routine management or provide information so they can apply for regional funding for management actions that exceed routine capacity and budgets. Next steps for the project include assessing rare plant population status and threats through 2021.