Overall Rating Silver
Overall Score 60.54
Liaison Alex Miller
Submission Date March 6, 2020
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

Carleton College
OP-10: Biodiversity

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.00 / 2.00 Alexandra Miller
Sustainability Program Coordinator
Energy and Sustainability
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution own or manage land that includes or is adjacent to legally protected areas, internationally recognized areas, priority sites for biodiversity, and/or regions of conservation importance?:
Yes

A brief description of the legally protected areas, internationally recognized areas, priority sites for biodiversity, and/or regions of conservation importance:

Carleton owns McKnight prairie a protected 33.5 acre plot of land 7 miles from the college. Unlike the surrounding areas, it has been virtually undisturbed by agriculture and other development and represents original prairie.) A conservation easement owned by the State of Minnesota protects this property in perpetuity, restricting any damaging activities such as building structures, cultivation, mining, or alteration of the topography. This site is recognized by the State of Minnesota and The Nature Conservancy as an area of biodiversity significance.


Has the institution conducted an assessment or assessments to identify endangered and vulnerable species (including migratory species) with habitats on institution-owned or –managed land?:
Yes

Has the institution conducted an assessment or assessments to identify environmentally sensitive areas on institution-owned or –managed land?:
Yes

The methodologies used to identify endangered and vulnerable species and/or environmentally sensitive areas (including most recent year assessed) and any ongoing assessment and monitoring mechanisms:

Yes, these assessments are always ongoing since we routinely find new species. We have excellent data on plants, birds and small mammals. Invertebrate assessment is less complete but some groups have been well surveyed.


A brief description of identified species, habitats and/or environmentally sensitive areas:

Information is compiled on the Cowling Arboretum website: http://apps.carleton.edu/campus/arb/habitats/, http://apps.carleton.edu/campus/arb/species/, http://apps.carleton.edu/campus/arb/management/) McKnight Prairie is a highly diverse remnant tallgrass prairie. Two federally listed plant species occur in good numbers at McKnight Prairie, Lespedeza leptostaychea (Prairie Bush Clover) and Besseya bullii (Kittentails) and two state listed animals, the Speyeria idalia (Regal Fritillary Butterfly) and Ammodramus henslowii (Henslow's Sparrow) are found there. While the Cowling Arboretum is primarily a restoration of native plant communities there are fragments of original vegetation including oak savanna, floodplain and upland forest, and marsh. Several state listed plants, Carex conjuncta (Jointed Sedge), Carex grayii (Gray's Sedge), and Scutellaria ovata (Forest Skullcap), as well as three state listed animals,Clemmys insculpta (Wood Turtle), Microtus ochrogaster (Prairie Vole) and Henslow's Sparrow are found in the Cowling Arboretum.


A brief description of plans or programs in place to protect or positively affect identified species, habitats and/or environmentally sensitive areas:

Programs are summarized on the Cowling Arboretum website (http://apps.carleton.edu/campus/arb/management/) and a copy of the Arboretum Strategic Plan is available upon request. Further details are as follows: Carleton College Cowling Arboretum consists of approximately 800 acres of land and has been a State Game Refuge for decades. Restoration projects over the past 20 years have focused on creating large blocks of native plant community types including floodplain forest, upland forest, oak savanna and tall grass prairie. The Cole Naturalist Program trains students in natural history and nature interpretation and provides opportunities for students to lead field trips for the College and local community. There are also workshops and programs focused on prescribed fire, invasive shrub control, and wildlife management


The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:
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