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Susan Britting, said at 11:50 p.m. on 2 March 2006 ,

The Sierra Nevada Forest Protection Campaign is a coalition of 98 conservation organizations united in our focus on land management planning and implementation on national forest lands in the Sierra Nevada. We are seriously concerned about management on national forest lands that compromises species and ecosystem needs.

It is our intention to provide detailed comments on the work plan in the near future. At this point, we seek to highlight the need to fully meet the budgetary requirements of the proposed work plan. To address the scientific and management questions posed in the work plan, the research must be fully funded. Anything short of full funding will not produce credible or useful results.

The work plan clearly identifies that fisher in the Sierra Nevada are highly vulnerable to population losses and further extirpation. The US Fish and Wildlife recently found that the listing of fisher under the Endangered Species Act may be warranted and cited habitat destruction and modification from timber harvest as factors of concern. We agree with these conclusions. The high vulnerability of fisher and the current threats to its habitat are precisely the reasons why a robust and meaningful assessment of the effects of management on fisher must be completed regardless of the cost. Beyond this, if funding for the fisher element of the work plan is reduced to the extent that the monitoring component is inadequate, the adaptive management plan will not be legitimate.

Susan Britting Science and Policy Advisor Sierra Nevada Forest Protection Campaign

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