Parkwide Exotic Plant Management Programmatic

Yosemite National Park » Parkwide Exotic Plant Management Programmatic » Document List

Exotic vegetation is present throughout front-country areas of the park, with the greatest concentrations occurring in Yosemite Valley and the El Portal Administrative site.

Vegetation and Restoration proposes to continue a limited removal program that has been ongoing for more than 15 years. This current, limited program does not include the use of herbicides. Previous years control efforts were covered by previous compliance, most recently by a Categorical Exclusion (CE) for Project number 2002-006, which was valid from April 1, 2002 through December 31, 2007. This current proposal is intended as an extension of the previous CE, and will eventually be supplanted by an Environmental Assessment which is in development currently under administrative review, but will not be completed in time for the majority of the 2008 field season.

Methods used would include hand pulling, mowing, digging, grubbing, and lopping. This would be accomplished with shovels, loppers, machetes, gasoline powered string trimmers, weed whips, and other hand held tools. Occasionally a skidsteer (Bobcat) would be used to till heavily infested sites with previous disturbance. A two wheeled self propelled mower would occasionally be used on monocultures of blackberry. Labor sources would include National Park Service (NPS) staff, paid interns, and unpaid volunteers. This work would occur on NPS administered land within both the National Park and within the El Portal Administrative site, as well as on land assignments within the Valley and Administrative site associated with park partners or the Mariposa County school district. Work on land assignments would be coordinated with park partners or the school district.

Vegetation and Restoration staff will continue to work with Cultural Resource staff to prevent damage to cultural resources. Cultural Resource staff have provided maps of archeological sites, and vegetation crews will not cause soil disturbance on those sites.

Over the years, many exotic species have worked their way into the repertoire of plants used for traditional cultural purposes as tribal practitioners adapt to the changing environment. Culturally significant (both historic and American Indian) vegetation has been indentified by the Park Historic Landscape Architect and through previous contacts with American Indian representatives, and will not be removed. At each work site, walkthroughs of work sites will occur with staff from Vegetation, History, Architecture, and Landscape and Archeology prior to starting work. Under this CE, exotic vegetation that is present as a component of historic landscapes will be retained.

Coordination with Native American groups will continue as well. 60 days before work days, provide the following information to the Park American Indian Liaison:

Map and description of work area
Plant to be treated
Method of treatment
Other plants in the work area that will not be treated
Work dates
Opportunity for field visit and harvest

This proposal includes all front country Yosemite National Park Exotic Plant Management actions, with the potential to treat any exotic plant infestation found in non-Wilderness, excluding concessionnaire land assignments.

This includes, but is not limited to:
Yosemite Valley:
Cook's meadow
Royal Arches meadow
Stoneman meadow
North and Lower Pines Campgrounds
Ahwahnee meadow
El Capitan Crossover
Black spring
Leideg meadow
Sentinel Meadow
Ackerman fire
Aspen Valley Road
El Portal Admin Site:
Old El Portal
Middle Road
Foresta Road
Perimeter of playgrounds and fields in Rancheria
Crane Flat area
Hodgdon Meadows area