Exotic Species Management Plans / Environmental Assessments
To protect the park's natural and cultural resources and the visitor experience from the harmful impacts of non-native species, the NPS / Big Bend National Park has developed Plans for management of 1) exotic animals, 2) trespass livestock, and 3) exotic plants.
The park developed Environmental Assessments for each of the three plans, and a Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) has been approved and signed for each Environmental Assessment.
These Plans will guide park managers and employees in protecting native natural resources, cultural resources, and the visitor experience from harm caused by these exotic species. The Exotic Animal plan addresses feral hogs and aoudad (Barbary sheep). The Trespass Livestock plan includes management of domestic horses, cattle, and burros that enter the park, generally from Mexico. The Exotic Plant plan provides guidance in managing a variety of plant species, including African buffelgrass and Lehman lovegrass.
NPS Policies direct that exotic species "will be managed if control is prudent and feasible and the species interferes with natural processes and the perpetuation of natural features, native species or natural habitats." These species are not native to the park.
The plans will provide guidance and a management framework for decisions regarding exotic species management over coming years. The plans include measures that minimize the undesirable effects of management actions upon park visitors, and natural and cultural resources.
Division Chief for Science and Resource Management David Larson, (432) 477-1143 email@example.com