Science Panel Recommendation: Fund Reduced
Science Panel Comments: This proposal investigates the efficacy of direct restoration techniques for the pigeon guillemot population in PWS. They will genetically sample mink that reside on Naked Island Archipelago to determine if the population was introduced or native and make recommendations for a recovery plan for pigeon guillemots based on the findings. Pigeon guillemots are one of two non-recovered species and this project represents one of the few restoration based proposals that have been submitted. The genetic sampling of mink and studies examining the relative contribution of mink vs. other predators to pigeon guillemot survival and reproduction are important in evaluating mink removals as a potential restoration activity. However, there is some concern that removal of mink may not be an appropriate restoration activity if the mink are in fact native. Also, food limitation studies may be difficult to interpret with respect to restoration and are perhaps premature. Mink removal may still prove an effective restoration tool even if food quality is poor. Furthermore, given the likely annual variation in food supply, a lack of food in one year may not be a reasonable predictor of future food limitation. We recommend funding the initial year of this proposal and suggest that efforts be made to provide genetic evidence on mink at the end of that year so that reasoned decisions can be made regarding future funding
Science Director Recommendation: Not Reviewed
Science Director Comments: The Science Director is on a long-term detail from the FWS and must therefore, recuse herself from making recommendations on FWS proposals. The PI on this proposal is employed by the FWS.
Public Advisory Committee (PAC) Recommendation: Not Reviewed
Public Advisory Committee (PAC) Comments: (Not Available)
Executive Director Recommendation: Fund Reduced
Executive Director Comments: Salaries and logistics are the major expenses of this proposal. Assuming mink predation on pigeon guillemots, any direct restoration will likely involve controlling the mink population on Naked Island. Before this can be undertaken a determination must be made whether the mink population is indigenous or introduced. Therefore, I only recommend funding the minimum mink capture and genetic testing program necessary to determine where the population is indigenous or introduced. I further recommend local trappers and logistics be utilized in this effort to reduce expense.
Trustee Council Decision: Fund
Trustee Council Comments: (Not Available)