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Photo courtesy of Utah Division of Wildlife Resources (see link at bottom of page)

 

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Request for Expressions of Interest - Long term hosting of CHAT
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AP Article: Western Governors launch the Crucial Habitat Assessment Tool (CHAT)
December 2013

WEBINAR: See a demonstration of our Crucial Habitat Assessment Tool.

The Western Governors’ Wildlife Council officially launched the Western Governors' Crucial Habitat Assessment Tool (CHAT) in December 2013.  CHAT, online at westgovchat.org, aims to bring greater certainty and predictability to planning efforts by establishing a common starting point for discussing the intersection of development and wildlife. CHAT's interface offers easily accessible online system of maps displaying crucial wildlife habitat and corridors across the West.

While not intended for project-level approval, CHAT is designed to reduce conflicts and surprises while ensuring wildlife values are better incorporated into land use decision-making, as well as large-scale conservation projects. Watch a webinar.
 
  

layered maps

The Development of CHAT

In 2010, supported by a grant from the Department of Energy, Western state wildlife agencies launched regional pilot projects to test guidance outlined in the Wildlife Council’s White Paper. The year-long pilot projects significantly supported coordination across political jurisdictions including inventorying common data, improving data development and data management, and increasing data sharing – all with the aim of identifying crucial habitat and corridors in a compatible manner across the West.

Based on significant knowledge gains from the pilot projects, in August 2011 the Wildlife Council refined their vision and established clearer milestones with a focus of developing the West-wide CHAT. For the following two years, states collaborated to define CHAT's process and products, from deciding the mapping resolution of the tool to determining how to "roll-up" data into a single habitat layer. Every state in the CHAT used its own priorities and data in order to create their CHAT layer, but the states used the same policy framework and guidance set by the Wildlife Council.

More information on the data and the process used to create CHAT is available in the Wildlife Council's White Paper or at westgovchat.org/data.

 

Arizona's HabiMap

CHATs in Individual States

Several states have developed state-specific information and data on priority species and habitat. This information goes beyond the crucial habitat data available at westgovchat.org. Points of contact for existing state CHATs are listed below.

 

 

 

 

 State  Tool  Contact
 Alaska  Fish Resource Monitor  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
 Alaska Department of  Game and Fish 
 Arizona  HabiMap™ Arizona  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ,
 Arizona Game & Fish
 California  Areas of Conservation Emphasis (ACE-II)  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ,
 California Fish and  Game
 Kansas  Kansas Natural Resource Planner  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. , Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism 
 Montana  Crucial Areas Assessment and Planning System (CAPS)  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ,
 Montana Fish, Wildlife  and Parks
 Nevada  Nevada Crucial Habitat Assessment Tool (NV CHAT)  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. , Nevada Department of Wildlife

 New Mexico

 New Mexico Crucial Habitat Assessment Tool (NM CHAT)  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. , New Mexico Department of Game and Fish
 Washington   Priority Habitats and Species (PHS on the Web  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ,
 Washington  Department of Fish  and Wildlife
 
 Wyoming  The Wyoming Interagency Spatial Database & Online Management  (WISDOM) System

 This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ,
 Wyoming Game and Fish

 Southern
 Great Plans
 Southern Great Plains CHAT (for lesser prairie chicken across range in  Colorado, Kansas, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas)  Contacts available on  SGPCHAT website

 

Banner photo of moose courtesy of the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources.