Rare Species Surveys


Most of our work has been tracking down rare species, especially rare plants. Most of the work has been on Federal and State land, driven by the various Federal and State environmental laws protecting species and habitats. About 90% of the work has been on US Forest Service property. Most of the targeted species have been those on the USFS sensitive species list, but often this is expanded to include species on the Natural Heritage Inventory rare species working list.

We have conducted target surveys for rare wildife that includes black-footed ferret, black-tailed prairie dog, Sprague's Pipit, Whooping Crane, Least Tern, Red Knot, Piping Plover, Burrowing Owl, Ferruginous Hawk, Prairie Falcon, Golden Eagle, Bald Eagle, Dakota skipper, Regal Fritillary, and many more, plus several hundred species of plants, including Stygian bog rush (Juncus stygius), Dakota buckwheat (Eriogonum visheri), western prairie fringed orchid (Platanthera praeclara), White Adder's-mouth (Malaxis monophyllos var. brachypoda), Fassett's Locoweed (Oxytropis campestris var. chartacea), smooth goosefoot (Chenopodium subglabrum), Hooker's townsendia (Townsendia hookeri), Canada yew (Taxus canadensis), moonwort (Botrychium mormo),  and ram's head ladyslipper (Cypripedium arietinum). 

You can view some of our rare species surveys below:

  • Eriogonum visheri Status Survey A 14,800-acre target survey for Dakota buckwheat on the Grand River Ranger District of the Dakota Prairie Grasslands. We encountered 1,281 populations of the species, a huge haul. One of several large surveys for this species that we have done over the years. 
  • Bullion Butte Rare Plant Survey - A 13,900-acre survey of 19 known rare plant populations on the Little Missouri National Grassland, Medora Ranger District. Two Collinsia parviflora, two Eriogonum cernuum, four Townsendia hookeri and one Phlox alyssifolia populations were rediscovered. 
  • Eriogonum visheri Status SurveyAnother big Eriogonum visheri survey on the Grand River Ranger District of the Dakota Prairie Grasslands. This was 10,710 acres and documented 465 populations of Dakota buckwheat. 
  • Platanthera Praeclara Status Survey - A population census of the western prairie fringed orchid, a federally threatened plant, on the Sheyenne National Grassland. 
  • Chenopodium subglabrum Status Survey - A population census of smooth goosefoot, a rare annual species that occupies active dune complexes. The survey was conducted on the Grand River Ranger District of the Dakota Prairie Grasslands.  

You can view some of our rare species photos below:

  • Rare Species Photos - Includes plants, mammals, birds, insects, reptiles, amphibians, insects from all three regions: Northern Great Lakes, Northern Great Plains, and Northern Rocky Mountains.
Rare Species Photos