San Diego Management & Monitoring Program


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Southwestern pond turtle Emys marmorata pallida

Goal: Protect and enhance existing populations of southwestern pond turtle to self-sustaining levels (i.e. 200+ individuals, even sex ratio, evidence of recruitment) in areas that meet the conditions for long-term management (low human access; high naturalness) and create new self-sustaining occurrences to ensure persistence over the long-term (>100 years).

regional and/or local NFO 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021 SL

MGT-IMP-TRAN EMYMAR-1

Management units: 3, 4, 5, 6, 8

From 2017 to 2021, continue efforts to expand and translocate occurrences of pond turtles to increase to self-sustaining levels in MU3 in the Sweetwater and Otay River Watersheds (at SPER, RJER, and other suitable sites) and identify, expand, and translocate pond turtles in at least 2 other watersheds in the MSPA, including but not limited to the San Diego and San Dieguito Rivers. Translocation efforts may include management of invasive aquatic and plant species, providing access protection, and headstart efforts.
Action Statement Action status Projects
IMP-1 Conduct routine management as needed at the Sycuan Peak ER occurrence of southwestern pond turtle. In progress
IMP-2 Conduct routine management as needed at the Rancho Jamul ER translocated occurrence of southwestern pond turtle. In progress
IMP-3 Continue to identify, begin management of invasive species, and translocate pond turtle to at least 2 suitable locations in the San Dieguito and San Diego River (e.g. El Monte Ponds, Boulder Creek Preserve) watersheds. In progress
IMP-4 Submit monitoring and management data to the regional MSP web portal. In progress
Criteria Deadline year
By 2021, 2 new occurrences translocated in the San Diego and San Dieguito River Watersheds; SPER and RJER occurrences increased by 20% through recruitment from 2017 leve 2021
regional and/or local NFO 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021 SL

MON-IMP-TRAN EMYMAR-2

Management units: 3, 4, 5, 6, 8

From 2017 to 2021, continue monitoring the effectiveness of southwestern pond turtle translocation experiments at SPER and RJER (see Table of Occurrences) and any additional translocated occurrences.
Action Statement Action status Projects
IMP-1 Continue to monitor the expanded and head-started occurrence and/or habitat at SPER and RJER to document success. In progress
IMP-2 Monitor other translocated occurrences to document success. waiting for precedent action
Criteria Deadline year
Southwestern Pond Turtle Translocation Monitoring and Reports Completed Annually 2021
regional and/or local NFO 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021 SL

MGT-IMP-IEX EMYMAR-3

Management units: 3, 4, 5, 6, 8

From 2017 to 2021, implement invasive aquatic animal and invasive plant control at natural and translocated pond turtle occurrences as needed to increase recruitment and basking habitat.
Action Statement Action status Projects
IMP-1 Follow guidelines in the existing Invasive Plant Strategic Plan (CBI et al 2012) and invasive plant and animal sections of the updated MSP. In progress
IMP-2 Submit management data to the regional MSP web portal. In progress
IMP-3 Unknown
regional NFO 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021 SL

MON-IMP-IMG EMYMAR-4

Management units: 3, 4, 5, 6, 8

From 2017 to 2021, biennially inspect the existing occurrences of southwestern pond turtle to identify necessary management actions in order to support the expansion of the occurrence to self sustaining levels.
Action Statement Action status Projects
IMP-1 Use regional IMG monitoring protocol to assess status, habitat, and quantify potential threats. Available for implementation
IMP-2 Based upon occurrence status and threats, determine management needs including whether routine management or more intensive management is warranted. Available for implementation
IMP-3 Submit monitoring and management data to the regional MSP web portal. Available for implementation
Criteria Deadline year
Surveys Completed every two years with management recommendations 2021
regional NFO 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021 SL

MGT-IMP-IMG EMYMAR-5

Management units: 3, 4, 5, 6, 8

From 2017 to 2021, conduct routine management actions identified through the IMG regional protocol monitoring, including protecting populations from disturbance, removing invasive plants, and removing aquatic predators and exotic species (which compete and or prey on western pond turtle, primarily young) within the known occupied and suitable habitat.
Action Statement Action status Projects
IMP-1 Perform routine management activities such as protecting occurrences from disturbance, controlling invasive plants, and removing invasive aquatic animals. some occurrences are in progress
IMP-2 Submit project metadata and management data to MSP web portal. some occurrences are in progress
Criteria Deadline year
Routine Management Completed as Needed Based Upon Monitoring Recommendations 2021
Code Obj. code Statement
EMYMAR-3 MGT-IMP-IEX From 2017 to 2021, implement invasive aquatic animal and invasive plant control at natural and translocated pond turtle occurrences as needed to increase recruitment and basking habitat.
regional NFO 2018 SL

MGT-PRP-MGTPL EMYMAR-6

Management units: 3, 4, 5, 6, 8

Beginning in 2018, prepare a management plan for southwestern pond turtles that includes identification of high priority management actions at sites with self sustaining populations, as well as actions to establish of at least 2 additional pond turtle populations to increase resilience to fire and other threats. Include guidance & prioritizations for next steps for translocations. The plan should include actions to manage threats from hydrology, debris, invasive animals and plants, and fire, and the creation of basking sites.
Action Statement Action status Projects
PRP-1 Develop a southwestern pond turtle management plan using the survey data with information on occurrence status and threats, habitat models, and management needs to determine if an appropriate location waiting for precedent action
PRP-2 The plan should prioritize management actions for the next five years and detail tasks, lead entities, responsibilities, timelines, and budgets waiting for precedent action
PRP-3 Submit management plan to MSP web portal waiting for precedent action
Criteria Deadline year
Management Plan for Southwestern pond turtle completed by 2018. 2018
Code Obj. code Statement
EMYMAR-1 MGT-IMP-TRAN From 2017 to 2021, continue efforts to expand and translocate occurrences of pond turtles to increase to self-sustaining levels in MU3 in the Sweetwater and Otay River Watersheds (at SPER, RJER, and other suitable sites) and identify, expand, and translocate pond turtles in at least 2 other watersheds in the MSPA, including but not limited to the San Diego and San Dieguito Rivers. Translocation efforts may include management of invasive aquatic and plant species, providing access protection, and headstart efforts.
EMYMAR-2 MON-IMP-TRAN From 2017 to 2021, continue monitoring the effectiveness of southwestern pond turtle translocation experiments at SPER and RJER (see Table of Occurrences) and any additional translocated occurrences.
EMYMAR-3 MGT-IMP-IEX From 2017 to 2021, implement invasive aquatic animal and invasive plant control at natural and translocated pond turtle occurrences as needed to increase recruitment and basking habitat.
EMYMAR-4 MON-IMP-IMG From 2017 to 2021, biennially inspect the existing occurrences of southwestern pond turtle to identify necessary management actions in order to support the expansion of the occurrence to self sustaining levels.
EMYMAR-9 MGT-PRP-RESCPL Beginning in 2018, establish program and permits to allow emergency management actions for the Southwestern pond turtle during or immediately following wildfire events, such as implementation of emergency rescue and temporary translocation, to protect from potential loss or extirpation.
regional NFO 2019, 2020, 2021 SL

MGT-IMP-MGTPL EMYMAR-7

Management units: 3, 4, 5, 6, 8

Beginning in 2019, implement highest priority management actions as identified in the Southwestern pond turtle management plan.
Action Statement Action status Projects
IMP-1 Management actions to be determined by the management plan. waiting for precedent action
IMP-4 Submit project metadata and management data to MSP web portal. unknown
Criteria Deadline year
By 2021, =1 High Priority Management Action Implemented from the Southwestern pond turtle Management Plan 2021
Code Obj. code Statement
EMYMAR-5 MGT-IMP-IMG From 2017 to 2021, conduct routine management actions identified through the IMG regional protocol monitoring, including protecting populations from disturbance, removing invasive plants, and removing aquatic predators and exotic species (which compete and or prey on western pond turtle, primarily young) within the known occupied and suitable habitat.
regional NFO 2019, 2020, 2021 SL

MON-IMP-MGTPL EMYMAR-8

Management units: 3, 4, 5, 6, 8

Beginning in 2019, monitor the effectiveness of management actions implemented for the Southwestern pond turtle.
Action Statement Action status Projects
IMP-1 Submit monitoring data and report to MSP web portal waiting for precedent action
Criteria Deadline year
Effectiveness of High Priority Management Actions Determined 2021
Code Obj. code Statement
EMYMAR-5 MGT-IMP-IMG From 2017 to 2021, conduct routine management actions identified through the IMG regional protocol monitoring, including protecting populations from disturbance, removing invasive plants, and removing aquatic predators and exotic species (which compete and or prey on western pond turtle, primarily young) within the known occupied and suitable habitat.
EMYMAR-6 MGT-PRP-MGTPL Beginning in 2018, prepare a management plan for southwestern pond turtles that includes identification of high priority management actions at sites with self sustaining populations, as well as actions to establish of at least 2 additional pond turtle populations to increase resilience to fire and other threats. Include guidance & prioritizations for next steps for translocations. The plan should include actions to manage threats from hydrology, debris, invasive animals and plants, and fire, and the creation of basking sites.
regional PRE 2018, 2019 SL

MGT-PRP-RESCPL EMYMAR-9

Management units: 3, 4, 5, 6, 8

Beginning in 2018, establish program and permits to allow emergency management actions for the Southwestern pond turtle during or immediately following wildfire events, such as implementation of emergency rescue and temporary translocation, to protect from potential loss or extirpation.
Action Statement Action status Projects
PRP-1 Develop protocols, monitoring standards, and permit process for the rescue of Southwestern pond turtles during wildfire events. Available for implementation
Criteria Deadline year
Wildfire rescue program established for Southwestern pond turtle in 2018 2021
Code Obj. code Statement
EMYMAR-5 MGT-IMP-IMG From 2017 to 2021, conduct routine management actions identified through the IMG regional protocol monitoring, including protecting populations from disturbance, removing invasive plants, and removing aquatic predators and exotic species (which compete and or prey on western pond turtle, primarily young) within the known occupied and suitable habitat.
regional SUPP 2019, 2020, 2021 SL

MGT-IMP-RESCPL EMYMAR-10

Management units: 3, 4, 5, 6, 8

Beginning in 2019, implement Southwestern pond turtle rescue program during wildfire events to protect from loss and/or extirpation
Action Statement Action status Projects
IMP-1 Submit management data and reports to MSP web portal waiting for precedent action
Criteria Deadline year
Wildfire rescue program implemented for Southwestern pond turtle 2021
Code Obj. code Statement
EMYMAR-7 MGT-IMP-MGTPL Beginning in 2019, implement highest priority management actions as identified in the Southwestern pond turtle management plan.
regional POST 2019, 2020, 2021 SL

MON-IMP-RESCPL EMYMAR-11

Management units: 3, 4, 5, 6, 8

Beginning in 2019, monitor the effectiveness of Southwestern pond turtle rescue programs following wildfire events, including translocation or re-introduction efforts.
Action Statement Action status Projects
IMP-1 Submit monitoring data and report to MSP web portal waiting for precedent action
Criteria Deadline year
Monitoring of post fire rescue programs for Southwest pond turtles implemented 2021
Code Obj. code Statement
EMYMAR-7 MGT-IMP-MGTPL Beginning in 2019, implement highest priority management actions as identified in the Southwestern pond turtle management plan.
EMYMAR-8 MON-IMP-MGTPL Beginning in 2019, monitor the effectiveness of management actions implemented for the Southwestern pond turtle.
regional POST 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021 SL

MGT-IMP-FMGT EMYMAR-12

Management units: 3, 4, 5, 6, 8

From 2017 to 2021, implement post fire management actions to ensure the recovery of Southwest pond turtle at occupied sites following wildfire events, including invasive plant and animal control, debris/sediment removal, erosion control or other management actions as needed after fire.
Action Statement Action status Projects
IMP-1 Implement needed management actions as determined through BAER or other post fire surveys. available for implementation
Criteria Deadline year
Post fire management actions implemented following wildfire events 2021
Code Obj. code Statement
EMYMAR-5 MGT-IMP-IMG From 2017 to 2021, conduct routine management actions identified through the IMG regional protocol monitoring, including protecting populations from disturbance, removing invasive plants, and removing aquatic predators and exotic species (which compete and or prey on western pond turtle, primarily young) within the known occupied and suitable habitat.
regional POST 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021 SL

MON-IMP-FMGT EMYMAR-13

Management units: 3, 4, 5, 6, 8

From 2017 to 2021, monitor stream conditions and the effectiveness of management actions implemented to assist in recovery of Southwestern pond turtle for 3 years following wildfire events.
Action Statement Action status Projects
IMP-1 Monitor stream flows and water quality postfire, document recovery of southwestern pond turtle populations and habitat, and effectiveness of any management actions for first 3 years after fire. waiting for precedent action
Criteria Deadline year
Monitoring of post fire management actions, stream conditions, and population status for Southwest pond turtles implemented for 3 years post fire 2021
Code Obj. code Statement
EMYMAR-5 MGT-IMP-IMG From 2017 to 2021, conduct routine management actions identified through the IMG regional protocol monitoring, including protecting populations from disturbance, removing invasive plants, and removing aquatic predators and exotic species (which compete and or prey on western pond turtle, primarily young) within the known occupied and suitable habitat.
EMYMAR-11 MON-IMP-RESCPL Beginning in 2019, monitor the effectiveness of Southwestern pond turtle rescue programs following wildfire events, including translocation or re-introduction efforts.