Comprehensive Shorebird Management Plan and Environmental Assessment
Cape Cod National Seashore's beaches and inter-tidal zone provide significant nesting and migrating/staging habitat for the piping plover (Charadrius melodus) and roseate tern (Stera dougallii). Both are federally listed under the 1973 Endangered Species Act. In addition, the seashore protects other state and federally listed species of special and/or conservation concern including the least tern (Sterna antillarum), common tern (Sterna hirundo), red knot (Calidris canutus rufa), and the American oystercatcher (Haematopus palliatus).
A Draft Shorebird Management Plan was available for a 60-day public and agency review from November 9, 2015 through January 11, 2016. Public comments included suggestions for new alternative elements or implementation ideas; questions about the adequacy of the data used; requests for more detail on proposed management actions; opposition to the use of lethal predator management; and opposition to the greatly increased restrictions on visitor use. An analysis of the comments and NPS responses to substantive comments is an attachment to the FONSI (Attachment A).
The National Park Service Northeast Regional Director signed the Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) on January 30, 2019; the plan is ready for implementation. The FONSI selects Alternative B: Increased Protection and Flexible Management, Plus Additional Management of Predator Impacts. With the new Shorebird Management Plan the national seashore will manage shorebirds to meet species recovery goals. This will be accomplished through a combination of flexible management at high visitation areas to maintain visitor access away from nests, increased visitor restrictions at certain places and times, and increased survival of chicks by non-lethal management of common nest predators.
The FONSI and the following 508 compliant attachments are posted.
Attachment A - Comment Analysis Report
Attachment B - Revised Shorebird Management Plan Environmental Assessment - Revised September 2018
Attachment C - Nonimpairment Determination
Brian Carlstrom, Superintendent
Cape Cod National Seashore
99 Marconi Site Road
Wellfleet, MA 02667