Resource Report 3 – Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation

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Resource Report 3 – Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
ATLANTIC COAST PIPELINE, LLC
ATLANTIC COAST PIPELINE
Docket No. PF15-6-000
and
DOMINION TRANSMISSION, INC.
SUPPLY HEADER PROJECT
Docket No. PF15-5-000
Resource Report 3
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
Draft
Prepared by
May 2015
Resource Report 3
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
Summary of Required Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Report Information
Minimum Filing Requirements:
1.
Classify the fishery type of each surface waterbody that would be crossed, including fisheries of special
concern. (§ 380.12(c)(1))

This includes commercial and sport fisheries as well as Coldwater and warmwater fishery
designations and associated significant habitat.
2.
Describe terrestrial and wetland wildlife and habitats that would be affected by the project.
(§ 380.12(e)(2))

Describe typical species with commercial, recreational, or aesthetic value.
3.
Describe the major vegetative cover types that would be crossed and provide the acreage of each
vegetative cover type that would be affected by construction. (§ 380.12(e)(3))

Include unique species or individuals and species of special concern.

Include nearshore habitats of concern.
4.
Describe the effects of construction and operation procedures on the fishery resources and proposed
mitigation measures. (§380.12(e)(4))

Be sure to include offshore effects, as needed.
5.
Evaluate the potential for short-tem, long-tem, and permanent impact on the wildlife resources and statelisted endangered or threatened species caused by construction and operation of the project and proposed
mitigation measures. (§ 380.12(c)(4))
6.
Identify all federally listed or proposed endangered or threatened species that potentially occur in the
vicinity of the project and discuss the results of the consultations with other agencies. Include survey
reports as specified in § 380.12(e)(5).

See § 380.13(b) for consultation requirements. Any surveys required through § 380.13(b)(5)(I)
must have been conducted and the results included in the Application.
7.
Identify all federally listed essential fish habitat (EFH) that potentially occurs in the vicinity of the
project and the results of abbreviated consultations with NMFS, and any resulting EFH assessment.
(§ 380.12(e)(6))
8.
Describe any significant biological resources that would be affected. Describe impact and any
mitigation proposed to avoid or minimize that impact. (§ 380.12(e)(4&7))

For offshore species be sure to include effects of sedimentation, changes to substrate, effects of
blasting, etc. This information is needed on a mile-by-mile basis and will require completion of
geophysical and other surveys before filing.
Additional Information:
Report Section Reference
Section 3.1; Appendix 2A and 2B
of Resource Report 2
Sections 3.2 and 3.3
Sections 3.2.1, 3.2.1.2, 3.2.1.3,
3.2.3, Tables 3.2.1-5, 3.2.4-1.
Sections 3.1.4 and 3.1.5
Sections 3.2.4 and 3.3.2; Table
3.2.1-2
Section 3.7
Section 3.1.6
Sections 3.1.4, 3.2.3, 3.3.2, 3.4.3,
3.6.1, 3.7.1.3, 3.7.2.3, 3.7.3.1
Report Section Reference
Provide copies of correspondence from federal and state fish and wildlife agencies along with responses to
their commendations to avoid or limit impact on wildlife, fisheries, and vegetation.
Provide a list of significant wildlife habitats crossed by the project. Specify locations by milepost, and
include length and width of crossing at each significant wildlife habitat.
Provide a description of invasive and noxious weeds that could be found within the project area
3-i
Appendix 1H and 1I of Resource
Report 1
Tables 3.2.3-1, 3.4.1-1
Section 3.2.2
Resource Report 3
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
TABLE OF CONTENTS
3.0
RESOURCE REPORT 3 – FISH, WILDLIFE, AND VEGETATION .................... 3-1
3.1
FISHERIES .......................................................................................................... 3-3
3.1.1 Fisheries Classifications........................................................................... 3-4
3.1.2 Existing Fisheries Resources ................................................................... 3-8
3.1.3 Fisheries of Special Concern ................................................................. 3-15
3.1.4 General Impacts and Mitigation............................................................. 3-23
3.1.5 Site-Specific Impacts and Mitigation..................................................... 3-28
3.1.6 Essential Fish Habitat ............................................................................ 3-28
3.2
VEGETATION .................................................................................................. 3-33
3.2.1 Existing Vegetation Resources .............................................................. 3-33
3.2.2 Invasive Plant Species............................................................................ 3-54
3.2.3 Construction and Operation Impacts and Mitigation ............................. 3-57
3.2.4 Site-Specific Impacts and Mitigation..................................................... 3-61
3.3
WILDLIFE ......................................................................................................... 3-64
3.3.1 Description of Wildlife .......................................................................... 3-64
3.3.2 Construction and Operations Impacts and Mitigation ........................... 3-68
3.4
MIGRATORY BIRDS....................................................................................... 3-72
3.4.1 Important Bird Areas ............................................................................. 3-72
3.4.2 Migratory Birds in the Project Area....................................................... 3-72
3.4.3 Impacts on Migratory Birds ................................................................... 3-74
3.5
BALD AND GOLDEN EAGLES ..................................................................... 3-77
3.6
MARINE MAMMALS ...................................................................................... 3-79
3.6.1 Impacts on Marine Mammals ................................................................ 3-80
3.7
ENDANGERED AND THREATENED SPECIES........................................... 3-81
3.7.1 Federally Listed and Proposed Species.................................................. 3-81
3.7.2 U.S. Forest Service Species ................................................................. 3-100
3.7.3 State/Commonwealth-Listed Species .................................................. 3-102
3.8
REFERENCES ................................................................................................ 3-107
LIST OF TABLES
Table 3.1.1-1
Table 3.1.1-2
Table 3.1.1-3
Table 3.1.1-4
Table 3.1.1-5
Table 3.1.2-1
Table 3.1.3-1
Table 3.1.3-2
Table 3.1.3-3
West Virginia Fisheries Classifications ......................................................... 3-5
Virginia Fisheries Classifications .................................................................. 3-5
Virginia Trout Waters Classifications ........................................................... 3-6
North Carolina Fisheries Classification ......................................................... 3-7
Pennsylvania Fisheries Classifications .......................................................... 3-8
Representative Fish Species in Waterbodies Crossed by the Atlantic
Coast Pipeline and Supply Header Project .................................................... 3-9
Waterbodies with Rare Fish Crossed by the Atlantic Coast Pipeline in
West Virginia ............................................................................................... 3-16
Virginia Fisheries Timing Restrictions ........................................................ 3-18
Significant Aquatic Endangered Habitats Crossed by the Atlantic Coast
Pipeline in North Carolina ........................................................................... 3-22
3-ii
Resource Report 3
Table 3.1.3-4
Table 3.1.6-1
Table 3.2.1-1
Table 3.2.1-2
Table 3.2.1-3
Table 3.2.1-4
Table 3.2.1-5
Table 3.2.1-6
Table 3.2.3-1
Table 3.2.4-1
Table 3.2.4-2
Table 3.3.1-1
Table 3.4.1-1
Table 3.7.1-1
Table 3.7.3-1
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
Natural Heritage Program Natural Areas Crossed by the Atlantic Coast
Pipeline in North Carolina ........................................................................... 3-23
Summary of Essential Fish Habitat and General Habitat Parameters
for the Atlantic Coast Pipeline ..................................................................... 3-31
Summary Statistics for Ecoregions Affected by the Atlantic Coast
Pipeline and Supply Header Project ............................................................ 3-34
Upland Forest/Woodland Crossed by the Atlantic Coast Pipeline and
Supply Header Project ................................................................................. 3-38
Unique, Sensitive, and Protected Vegetation Communities Crossed by
the Atlantic Coast Pipeline and Supply Header Project............................... 3-41
Ecological Integrity Units and Sensitive Communities Crossed by the
Atlantic Coast Pipeline in Virginia .............................................................. 3-43
Upland Forested Habitats Crossed in Federal Land for the Atlantic
Coast Pipeline .............................................................................................. 3-51
Crossings of Red Spruce Forest in the Monongahela National Forest ........ 3-52
Upland Habitats Crossed by the Atlantic Coast Pipeline............................. 3-58
Unique, Sensitive, and Protected Vegetation Communities Affected
by the Atlantic Coast Pipeline and Supply Header Project.......................... 3-62
Upland Habitats Crossed in the National Forests by the Atlantic Coast
Pipeline ........................................................................................................ 3-63
Typical Wildlife Species by Ecoregion for the Atlantic Coast Pipeline
and Supply Header Project........................................................................... 3-65
Important Bird Areas Occurring in the Vicinity of the Atlantic Coast
Pipeline and Supply Header Project ............................................................ 3-73
Federally Listed Plant Survey Timing Windows ......................................... 3-93
State/Commonwealth-listed Endangered and Threatened Species
Potentially Occurring in the Atlantic Coast Pipeline Area and Supply
Header Project Area ................................................................................... 3-104
LIST OF FIGURES
Figure 3.2.1-1
Major Ecoregions Crossed ........................................................................... 3-35
LIST OF APPENDICES
Appendix 3A
Appendix 3B
Appendix 3C
Vegetative Communities and Sub-Communities Within the Atlantic Coast
Pipeline and Supply Header Projects
Federally Listed Species Potentially Occurring Within the Vicinity of the
Atlantic Coast Pipeline and Supply Header Projects
Migratory Birds of Conservation Concern Within the Vicinity of the Atlantic
Coast Pipeline and Supply Header Projects
3-iii
Resource Report 3
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
LIST OF ACRONYMS AND ABBREVIATIONS
°F
ACP
AFSA
AGL
Atlantic
ATWS
BBS
BCC
bcf/d
BCR
BGEPA
BR
CA
CCB
Certificate
CFR
Commission
CSR
CWF
Dominion
DPS
Dth/d
DTI
Duke Energy
EFH
ELMR
EPA
ER
ESA
ESC Plan
ESFO
FERC
FWS
GAP
GWNF
HDD
HDD Plan
HIERE
HQW
IMAP
IPaC System
LRMP
M&R
MACP
degrees Fahrenheit
Atlantic Coastline Pipeline
anadromous fish spawning areas
AGL Resources, Inc.
Atlantic Coastline Pipeline, LLC
additional temporary workspace
Breeding Bird Survey
Birds of Conservation Concern
billion cubic feet per day
Bird Conservation Region
Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act
Blue Ridge ecoregion
Central Appalachian ecoregion
Center for Conservation Biology
Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity
Code of Federal Regulations
Federal Energy Regulatory Commission
Code of State Regulation
Cold Water Fisheries
Dominion Resources, Inc.
Distinct Population Segment
dekatherms per day
Dominion Transmission, Inc.
Duke Energy Corporation
essential fish habitat
Estuarine Living Marine Resources
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Environmental Report
Endangered Species Act
Erosion and Sediment Control Plan
Ecological Services Field Offices
Federal Energy Regulatory Commission
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
Gap Analysis Program
George Washington National Forest
horizontal directional drill
Horizontal Directional Drill Fluid Monitoring, Operations, and
Contingency Plan
Highlands Institute for Environmental Research and Education
High Quality Waters
Important Mammal Areas Project
Information Planning and Conservation System
Land and Resource Management Plan
metering and regulating
Mid-Atlantic Coastal Plain ecoregion
3-iv
Resource Report 3
MBTA
MF
MIS
MMPA
MNF
MP
MSA
NCAC
NCDACS
NCDENR
NCDMF
NCDWR
NCMFC
NCNHP
NCWRC
NHI
NHP
NOAA Fisheries
NOAA
NP
NPS
NRCS
NSW
OPR
PADEP
PDCNR
PFBC
PGC
Piedmont
Plan
PNDI
Procedures
Projects
RFSS
RV
SCU
SHP
SP
SPCC
SVTU
TSF
USC
USDA
USDOT
USFS
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
Migratory Bird Treaty Act
Migratory Fishes
Management Indicator Species
Marine Mammal Protection Act
Monongahela National Forest
milepost
Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act
North Carolina Administrative Code
North Carolina Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services
North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources
North Carolina Division of Marine Fisheries
North Carolina Division of Water Resources
North Carolina Marine Fisheries Commission
North Carolina Natural Heritage Program
North Carolina Wildlife Resource Commission
National Heritage Inventory
Natural Heritage Program
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, National
Marine Fisheries Service
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Northern Piedmont ecoregion
National Park Service
Natural Resources Conservation Service
nutrient sensitive waters
Office of Protected Resources
Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection
Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources
Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission
Pennsylvania Game Commission
Piedmont Natural Gas Co., Inc.
Upland Erosion Control, Revegetation, and Maintenance Plan
Pennsylvania Natural Diversity Inventory
Wetland and Waterbody Construction and Mitigation Procedures
Atlantic Coastline Pipeline and Supply Header Project
Regional Forester Sensitive Species
Ridge and Valley ecoregion
Stream Conservation Unit
Supply Header Project
Southern Plains ecoregion
Spill, Prevention, Control, and Countermeasures Plan
Shenandoah Valley Chapter of Trout Unlimited
Trout Stocking Fisheries
United States Code
U.S. Department of Agriculture
U.S. Department of Transportation
U.S. Forest Service
3-v
Resource Report 3
USGS
VAC
VDACS
VDCR
VDGIF
WAP
WERMS
WMA
WNS
WVCSR
WVDEP
WVDNR
WVMSP
WVNHP
WWF
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
U.S. Geological Survey
Virginia Administrative Code
Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services
Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation
Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries
Western Allegheny Plateau
Wildlife Environmental Review Map Service
Wildlife Management Area
white-nose syndrome
West Virginia Code of State Rules
West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection
West Virginia Division of Natural Resources
West Virginia Mussel Survey Protocols
West Virginia Natural Heritage Program
Warm Water Fisheries
3-vi
ATLANTIC COAST PIPELINE – Docket No. PF15-6-000 and
SUPPLY HEADER PROJECT – Docket No. PF15-5-000
3.0
RESOURCE REPORT 3 – FISH, WILDLIFE, AND VEGETATION
Atlantic Coast Pipeline
Atlantic Coast Pipeline, LLC (Atlantic) is a company formed by four major U.S. energy
companies – Dominion Resources, Inc. (Dominion; NYSE: D), Duke Energy Corporation (Duke
Energy; NYSE: DUK), Piedmont Natural Gas Co., Inc. (Piedmont; NYSE: PNY), and AGL
Resources, Inc. (AGL; NYSE: GAS). The company was created to develop, own, and operate
the proposed Atlantic Coast Pipeline (ACP), an approximately 556-mile-long, interstate natural
gas transmission pipeline system designed to meet growing energy needs in Virginia and North
Carolina. The ACP will be capable of delivering 1.5 billion cubic feet per day (bcf/d) 1 of natural
gas to be used to generate electricity, heat homes, and run local businesses. The underground
pipeline Project will facilitate cleaner air, increase the reliability and security of natural gas
supplies, and provide a significant economic boost in West Virginia, Virginia, and North
Carolina. More information is provided at the company’s website at www.dom.com/acpipeline.
Atlantic has contracted with Dominion Transmission, Inc. (DTI), a subsidiary of Dominion, to
permit, build, and operate the ACP on behalf of Atlantic. 2
Atlantic is seeking authorization from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission
(FERC or Commission) under Section 7(c) of the Natural Gas Act to construct, own, operate,
and maintain the following proposed facilities for the ACP:
Mainline Pipeline Facilities:

AP-1: approximately 292.8 miles of 42-inch outside diameter natural gas
transmission pipeline in Harrison, Lewis, Upshur, Randolph, and Pocahontas
Counties, West Virginia; Highland, Augusta, Nelson, Buckingham, Cumberland,
Prince Edward, Nottoway, Dinwiddie, Brunswick, and Greensville Counties,
Virginia; and Northampton County, North Carolina.

AP-2: approximately 181.5 miles of 36-inch outside diameter natural gas
transmission pipeline in Northampton, Halifax, Nash, Wilson, Johnston,
Sampson, Cumberland, and Robeson Counties, North Carolina.
Lateral Pipeline Facilities:

1
2
AP-3: approximately 77.6 miles of 20-inch outside diameter natural gas lateral
pipeline in Northampton County, North Carolina; and Greensville and
Southampton Counties and the Cities of Suffolk and Chesapeake, Virginia.
The 1.5 bcf/d is equivalent to approximately 1.5 million dekatherms per day (Dth/d). The bcf/d unit of measurement is used to refer to the
capacity of the ACP system. The Dth/d measurement is used to refer to contractual obligations (as set forth in Table 1.2-1).
As described in this report, DTI actions associated with the ACP are on behalf of Atlantic.
3-1
Resource Report 3
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation

AP-4: approximately 3.1 miles of 16-inch outside diameter natural gas lateral
pipeline in Brunswick County, Virginia.

AP-5: approximately 1.0 mile of 16-inch outside diameter natural gas lateral
pipeline in Greensville County, Virginia.
Compressor Station Facilities:

Compressor Station 1: a new, natural gas-fired compressor station approximately
at milepost (MP) 6.8 of the AP-1 mainline in Lewis County, West Virginia.

Compressor Station 2: a new, natural gas-fired compressor station approximately
at MP 186.0 of the AP-1 mainline in Buckingham County, Virginia.

Compressor Station 3: a new natural gas-fired compressor station approximately
at MP 292.8 of the AP-1 mainline in Northampton County, North Carolina.
Other Aboveground Facilities:

Nine new metering and regulating (M&R) stations at receipt and/or delivery
points along the new pipelines (including one at Compressor Station 1 and one at
Compressor Station 2).

Twenty-nine valve sites at select points along the new pipelines at intervals
specified by U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) regulations at Title 49
Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 192.

Eight sets of pig launcher and/or receiver sites at 11 points along the new
pipelines (including launcher/receiver sites at Compressor Stations 2 and 3).
As required by 18 CFR 380.12, Atlantic is submitting this Environmental Report (ER) in
support of its Application to the Commission for a Certificate of Public Convenience and
Necessity (Certificate) to construct and operate the proposed ACP facilities.
Supply Header Project
DTI proposes to construct and operate approximately 36.7 miles of pipeline loop and
modify existing compression facilities in Pennsylvania and West Virginia. This Project, referred
to as the Supply Header Project (SHP), will enable DTI to provide firm transportation service of
up to 1.5 bcf/d to various customers, including Atlantic. Atlantic will be a “Foundation Shipper”
in the SHP, and will utilize the SHP capacity to allow its shippers access to natural gas supplies
from various DTI receipt points for further delivery to points along the ACP.
DTI is seeking authorization from the FERC under Section 7(c) of the Natural Gas Act to
construct, own, operate, and maintain the following proposed facilities for the SHP:
3-2
Resource Report 3
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
Pipeline Loops:

TL-636: approximately 3.9 miles of 30-inch outside diameter natural gas pipeline
looping DTI’s existing LN-25 pipeline in Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania.

TL-635: approximately 32.8 miles of 36-inch outside diameter natural gas
pipeline looping DTI’s existing TL-360 pipeline in Harrison, Doddridge, Tyler,
and Wetzel Counties, West Virginia.
Compressor Station Modifications:

JB Tonkin Compressor Station: modifications at DTI’s existing JB Tonkin
Compressor Station in Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania.

Crayne Compressor Station: modifications at DTI’s existing Crayne Compressor
Station in Greene County, Pennsylvania.

Burch Ridge Compressor Station: crossover piping at DTI’s existing Burch
Ridge Compressor Station in Marshall County, West Virginia.

Mockingbird Hill Compressor Station: modifications at or near DTI’s existing
Mockingbird Hill Compressor Station in Wetzel County, West Virginia.
Other Aboveground Facilities:

Five valve sites at select points along the new pipeline loops at intervals specified
by USDOT regulations at 49 CFR 192.

Two sets of pig launcher and receiver sites at the ends of each of the new pipeline
loops.
As required by 18 CFR 380.12, DTI is submitting this ER in support of its Application to
the Commission for a Certificate to construct and operate the proposed SHP facilities.
Scope Resource Report 3
This Resource Report describes the existing fish, wildlife, and vegetation resources that
will be directly and indirectly affected by the ACP and SHP (collectively, the Projects). It covers
expected impacts on these resources, including potential effects on biodiversity, from
construction and operation of the facilities, as well as the mitigation measures that are proposed
to reduce these impacts. Copies of correspondence with applicable agencies are provided in
Appendices 1H (ACP) and 1I (SHP) of Resource Report 1, respectively.
3.1
FISHERIES
This section of Resource Report 3 describes fisheries resources present in waterbodies
crossed by the proposed ACP and SHP facilities. Fisheries information is based on review of
existing, publically available information including U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) topographic
maps, aerial photographs, and spatial data layers; results from wetland and waterbody field
3-3
Resource Report 3
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
surveys; and consultation with Federal and State/Commonwealth resource agencies. Threatened
and endangered fish species are discussed in Section 3.7 below.
Based on field surveys and National Hydrography Database data, the proposed ACP
pipeline facilities will cross 998 waterbodies, consisting of 379 perennial streams,
533 intermittent and ephemeral streams, 61 canal/ditch features, and 25 open water ponds.
Additionally, ACP access roads identified will cross 92 waterbodies, including 33 perennial
streams, 53 intermittent and ephemeral streams, 2 canal/ditch features, and 4 open water ponds.
The proposed SHP pipeline facilities will cross 51 waterbodies, consisting of 39 perennial
streams and 12 intermittent streams. SHP access roads have not been identified to date. More
detailed information on the waterbodies crossed by the proposed ACP and SHP facilities is
provided in Section 2.2.2 and Tables 2A-1 and 2A-2 in Appendix 2A of Resource Report 2.
3.1.1 Fisheries Classifications
Fisheries that could be affected by the Projects are classified according to water
temperature (warmwater or coldwater), type of use (commercial or recreational/sport fishing),
salinity levels (marine, estuarine, or freshwater), and/or life cycle (anadromous, catadromous,
resident). Anadromous fish are marine fishes that require freshwater areas to spawn, whereas
catadromous fish are freshwater species that migrate to marine waters for reproduction.
Some States/Commonwealths do not have specific fisheries classifications, but have
surface water designated use classifications that include the Protection and Propagation of Fish,
Shellfish, and Wildlife (i.e., Aquatic Life Use). Within some States/Commonwealths, the
Aquatic Life Use classification is often divided into several more specific categories or
subcategories, including for coldwater fish, warmwater fish, and shellfish. The
State/Commonwealth-specific fisheries classifications or aquatic life designated use categories
and/or sub categories for the Projects are described in the subsections below.
In addition to fisheries or designated use classifications, regulations for water quality
standards require all States/Commonwealths to establish a three-tiered antidegradation policy to
protect water quality, and in turn, aquatic habitats. The antidegradation implementation
procedures in each State/Commonwealth include considerations specific to fisheries resources.
The antidegradation policies and surface water designations for West Virginia, Virginia, North
Carolina, and Pennsylvania are described in Section 2.2.3 in Resource Report 2. The fisheries
classifications for streams crossed by the proposed ACP in and SHP facilities are listed in
Tables 2A-1 and 2A-2 in Appendix 2A of Resource Report 2.
3.1.1.1 West Virginia
West Virginia Code of State Rules (CSR) established Water Use Categories A through E
for waters of the State. With regard to fisheries classifications, streams and rivers are assigned to
Water Use Category B: Propagation and Maintenance of Fish and Other Aquatic Life. Within
this category, West Virginia subclassifies fisheries as either warmwater fishery streams (B1) or
trout waters (B2) (WVCSR, 2014). High Quality Waters (HQW) are part of West Virginia’s
antidegradation policy. This designation is the only category in West Virginia for the protection
of stocked trout waters that do not support trout year round (West Virginia Code of State Rules
[WVCSR], 2014). Table 3.1.1-1 defines each waterbody classification in detail.
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Resource Report 3
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
TABLE 3.1.1-1
West Virginia Fisheries Classifications
Designation a
Classification
Description a
Designating Agency b
Warmwater Fishery
Streams
B1
WVDEP
Trout Waters
B2
Warmwater fishery streams or stream segments that contain populations
composed of all warmwater aquatic life. Streams are managed for or
currently support warmwater fish species.
These waters sustain year-round trout populations, whether or not they
are stocked. Excludes waters which receive annual stockings of trout but
do not support year-round trout populations. In short, trout waters
contain naturally reproducing or stocked trout, so long as trout survive
year-round.
Streams or stream segments which receive annual stockings of trout but
do not support year-round trout populations.
High Quality Waters
HQW
WVDEP
WVDEP
____________________
a
Source: WVCSR, 2014; WVDEP, 2012
b
WVDEP = West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection
3.1.1.2 Virginia
The Commonwealth of Virginia has established six designated use categories under Title
9 of Virginia Administrative Code (VAC, 2014a) Agency 25 Chapter 260 Section 10
(Designation of Uses). Virginia waters are designated by the State Water Control Board as
inland or tidal waters. Virginia further designates uses separately for Aquatic Life, Fish
Consumption, and Shellfishing. Subcategories under the Aquatic Life designation specific to
fisheries in the Chesapeake Bay and its tidal tributaries are Deep Channel Seasonal Refuge, Deep
Water Aquatic Life, Migratory Fish Spawning and Nursery, and Open Water Aquatic Life.
Subcategories under Aquatic Life to differentiate between coldwater and warmwater fisheries
have not been adopted in the Commonwealth (VAC, 2014a). Descriptions of each of the
designated use categories are provided in Table 3.1.1-2.
TABLE 3.1.1-2
Virginia Fisheries Classifications
Designated Use a
Description a
Inland Waterbodies
Aquatic Life
The propagation, growth, and protection of a balanced indigenous population of
aquatic life (including game and marketable fish) which may be expected to
inhabit the waters.
Fish Consumption
The propagation, growth, and protection of a balanced population of aquatic life
including game and marketable fish. Human health is also a primary
consideration with regard to fish consumption use.
Shellfishing
The propagation, growth, and protection of a balanced population of aquatic life
including marketable shellfish.
Chesapeake Bay and Its Tidal Tributaries
Deep Channel Seasonal Refuge
This designation provides for seasonal protection of populations of benthic infauna
and epifauna. Tidally influenced waters and varying circulation patterns, such as
swamp waters, are categorized under this designation.
Deep Water Aquatic Life
This designation protects and promotes healthy populations of aquatic life in deepwater habitats.
Migratory Fish Spawning and
This designation protects resident fish species. Fishes of most concern are
Nursery
anadromous, semi-anadromous, and catadromous fishes. This classification also
distinguishes tidal waters which provide spawning sites and nursery grounds.
Open Water Aquatic Life
This designation applies year-around and protects the survival, growth, and
propagation of a balanced, indigenous population of aquatic life inhabiting openwater habitats.
____________________
a
Source: VAC, 2014a
b
VADEQ = Virginia Department of Environmental Quality
3-5
Designating Agency b
VADEQ
VADEQ
VADEQ
VADEQ
VADEQ
VADEQ
VADEQ
Resource Report 3
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
Trout waters are a separate subset classified by the Virginia Department of Game and
Inland Fisheries (VDGIF). Under Title 9 of VAC Agency 25 Chapter 260 Section 370, the
VDGIF categorizes coldwater or trout waters into eight classes based on aesthetics, productivity,
resident fish population, and stream structure (VAC, 2014b). Descriptions of trout waters
classifications are provided in Table 3.1.1-3. Classes I through IV are rated as wild trout habitat,
while Classes V through VIII are rated as coldwater habitat not suitable for wild trout but
adequate for stocked trout (i.e., stockable trout streams). Based on spatial data from VDGIF, all
coldwater or trout streams crossed by the AP-1 mainline in Virginia occur in the western portion
of the Commonwealth between MP 80.0 and 154.4, west of US 29 (VDGIF, 2011).
TABLE 3.1.1-3
Virginia Trout Waters Classifications
Classification a
Description a
Designating Agency
Wild Natural Trout Streams
Class I
Streams that provide excellent fish habitat with outstanding natural characteristics. Classified as
exceptional wild trout streams.
VDGIF
Class II
Streams that contain a good population or could potentially support populations. Streams lack in
aesthetic quality, productivity, and/or in some structural characteristic. Streams are considered good
and represent a majority of Virginia's wild trout waters.
VDGIF
Class III
Streams that contain a fair population with a low sustained population based on natural factors and
poorly managed land-use practices. Poor practices affecting these systems include heavy siltation of
the stream, destruction of banks and fish cover, water quality degradation, and increased water
temperature.
VDGIF
Class IV
Streams at risk of being over-exploited. Although these streams contain adequate reproducing
populations, Summer flow characteristics are severely reduced. Fish are often trapped in isolated
pools where they are highly susceptible to predators and fishermen.
VDGIF
Stockable Trout Streams
Class V
Streams that do not contain an adequately reproducing wild trout population or have the potential for
such. However, water quality is adequate, water temperature is good, and invertebrate productivity
is exceptional. Pools are abundant with good size and depth and fish cover is excellent. Stream
could potentially be suitable for stocking.
VDGIF
Class VI
Streams that do not contain a significant number of trout or a significant population of warmwater
game fish. All streams in this class are considered good trout stocking waters.
VDGIF
Class VII
Streams in this category do not contain a significant number of trout or a significant population of
warmwater game fish. Streams in this class could be included in a stocking program; based on
quality, however, this would not be recommended.
VDGIF
Class VIII
Streams that do not contain a significant number of trout or a significant population of warmwater
game fish. Streams in this class only provide good trout habitat during certain times of the year.
VDGIF
____________________
a
b
Source: VAC, 2014b
VDGIF = Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries
3.1.1.3 North Carolina
The State of North Carolina has established a system to protect aquatic communities and
fisheries based on waterbody type. The North Carolina Division of Water Resources (NCDWR)
has assigned surface waters in the State a primary classification under Title 15A - Environment
and Natural Resources, Chapter 02 Environmental Management, Subchapter B (North Carolina
Administrative Code [NCAC], 2011). Freshwaters are assigned one of eight classifications with
one primary surface water classification related to fisheries: Class C (fishable/swimmable
waters). All waters in the State must meet the standards for Class C waters. Class C
designations apply to both freshwater (C) and tidal saltwaters (SC) (NCDWR, 2014).
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Supplemental classifications that may be applied to Class C waters for fisheries include
trout waters (Tr), swamp waters (Sw), and nutrient sensitive waters (NSW) (NCAC, 2011). The
Sedimentation and Pollution Control Act of 1973 requires buffer zones along trout waters, and
the Division of Land Resources Rule requires a minimum 25-foot-wide buffer of undisturbed
zonation regardless of the size of the land disturbance (North Carolina Department of
Environment and Natural Resources [NCDENR], 2009). No waters under the Tr classification
are crossed by the proposed pipeline routes in North Carolina. The primary and supplemental
fisheries classifications are described in Table 3.1.1-4.
TABLE 3.1.1-4
North Carolina Fisheries Classification
Designation a
Classification
Description a
Designating Agency b
Fishable/ Swimmable
Freshwaters
C
Protected for secondary recreation, fishing, and fish consumption,
aquatic life including propagation, survival, and maintenance of
biological integrity, agriculture, and other uses. Secondary recreation
includes wading, boating, and other uses involving human body
contact with water in an infrequent manner.
NCDWR
Fishable/ Swimmable
Tidal Saltwaters
SC
Tidal salt waters within this class are designated as secondary
recreation. Fishing, boating, and aquatic life propagation and survival
are a few examples of activities that take place in these waters.
NCDWR
Trout Waters
Tr
Habitat suitable for trout propagation and survival of stocked trout on
a year-round basis.
NCDWR
Swamp Waters
Sw
Waters with low velocities and characteristics of wetland ecosystems.
NCDWR
NSW
Waters subject to excessive microscopic and macroscopic vegetation
from nutrients within the watershed. This often results in anoxic
conditions leading to low oxygen levels and eutrophication. Waters
under this classification require additional nutrient management
practices.
NCDWR
Primary Classifications
Supplemental Classifications
Nutrient Sensitive Waters
____________________
a
b
Source: NCAC, 2011
NCDWR = North Carolina Division of Water Resources
The North Carolina Division of Marine Fisheries (NCDMF) establishes and protects
Primary Nursery Areas to protect waters which support embryonic, larval, or juvenile
populations of marine or estuarine fish or crustacean species. There are no Primary Nursery
Areas in any of the Counties crossed by the ACP in North Carolina. Additional classifications
for HQWs and Outstanding Resource Waters have been established; however, no surface waters
with these classifications will be crossed by the ACP in North Carolina. These categories fall
under the antidegradation policy in North Carolina as discussed in Section 2.2.3 of Resource
Report 2.
3.1.1.4 Pennsylvania
Within the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, the Pennsylvania Department of
Environmental Protection (PADEP) differentiates its waterbody systems based on the following
protected uses: Aquatic Life, Water Supply, Recreation and Fish Consumption, Special
Protection, and Other. Pennsylvania Code Title 25, Water Quality Standards Chapter 93
established the following five subcategories for fisheries under Aquatic Life (PA Code, 2014a):
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Cold Water Fishes (CWF), Warm Water Fishes (WWF), Migratory Fishes (MF), and Trout
Stocking Fisheries (TSF).
Under Pennsylvania Code Title 58, Chapter 57, the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat
Commission (PFBC) classifies waterbodies that support trout populations (either stocked or
native) or provide trout habitat as follows: Wild Trout Waters, including upstream tributaries;
Class A Wild Trout Streams; and Wilderness Trout Streams (PA Code, 2014b). The PFBC
identifies approved trout waters as waterbodies that contain segments open to public fishing
year-round, subject to certain catch restrictions for trout and salmon (PFBC, 2014a).
Descriptions of the Pennsylvania classifications as they relate to fisheries are described in
Table 3.1.1-5.
TABLE 3.1.1-5
Pennsylvania Fisheries Classifications
Designation a
Descriptions a
Designating Agency b
Cold Water Fishes
The maintenance and/or propagation of indigenous fishes in coldwater habitats. Fish
are typically categorized within the family Salmonidae.
PADEP
Warm Water Fishes
The maintenance and/or propagation of indigenous fishes in warmwater habitats.
PADEP
Migratory Fishes
The passage, maintenance, and propagation of anadromous, catadromous, and other
species of fishes which ascend to flowing waters to complete their life cycle.
PADEP
Trout Stocking Fisheries
The maintenance of stocked trout from February 15 to July 31 and maintenance and
propagation of fish species which are indigenous to a warmwater habitat.
PADEP
Wild Trout Waters
Streams where trout have resulted from natural reproduction. Must function as
necessary wild trout habitat sustaining populations, nurseries, and refuges. Excludes
trout stocked waters.
PFBC
Class A Wild Trout Streams
Supports wild populations and natural reproduction with no stocking. Trout of a
sufficient size and abundance support long-term sport fishery.
PFBC
Wilderness Trout Streams
Wild populations located in remote, natural, and an unspoiled environment of superior
quality. These waters qualify as Exceptional Value.
PFBC
Approved Trout Waters
Open to year-round fishing with certain restrictions on trout and salmon seasons and
size/creel limits. Stocked with trout by the PFBC.
PFBC
____________________
a
b
Source: PA Code, 2014a; PA Code, 2014b; PA Code, 2014c; PFBC, 2014a.
PADEP = Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection
PFBC = Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission
Additional classifications for HQWs and Exceptional Value Waters have been
established in Pennsylvania. These categories also fall under the antidegradation policy for
Pennsylvania as discussed in Section 2.2.3 of Resource Report 2.
3.1.2 Existing Fisheries Resources
The proposed Projects cross numerous streams with the potential to provide habitat for
fish. Within the ACP Project area and SHP Project area, habitat occurs for both warmwater and
coldwater fish species. Additional fisheries resources that exist in the ACP Project area and SHP
Project area include game and commercial fisheries and hatcheries. Publicly available
information, including previously identified surface water or fisheries classifications (see
Section 3.1.1), state mappers, and administrative code, was used to identify potential fish-bearing
waterbodies, fish species that may be present in these waterbodies, and where there may be
knowledge gaps or incomplete information. Information additionally was requested from
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resource agencies and used to fill gaps when possible. The State/Commonwealth fisheries
resources that occur in the ACP Project area and SHP Project area are described in the
subsections below.
Table 3.1.2-1 provides a list of representative warmwater and coldwater fish species
which may occur in the waterbodies crossed by the proposed Projects. Tables 2A-1 and 2A-2 in
Appendix 2A of Resource Report 2 include the State/Commonwealth fisheries classification and
surface water classification for fish use for these waterbodies.
TABLE 3.1.2-1
Representative Fish Species in Waterbodies Crossed by the Atlantic Coast Pipeline and Supply Header Project
West Virginia a
Warmwater Fishes
channel catfish (Ictalurus punctatus)
walleye (Sander vitreus)
muskellunge (Esox masquinongy)
flathead catfish (Pylodictis olivaris)
rock bass (Ambloplites rupestris)
smallmouth bass (Micropterus dolomieu)
largemouth bass (Micropterus salmoides)
striped bass e (Morone saxatillis)
sauger (Stizostedion canadense)
brown trout e (Salmo trutta)
white bass (Morone chrysops)
Coldwater Fishes
rainbow trout e (Oncorhynchus mykiss)
mottled sculpin (Cottus bairdi)
e
brook trout (Salvelinus fontinalis)
fantail darter (Etheostoma flabellare)
Virginia b
Warmwater Fishes
striped bass e (Morone saxatillis)
yellow perch (Perca flavescens)
redear sunfish (Lepomis microlophus)
longnose gar (Lepisosteus osseus)
flathead catfish (Pylodictis olivaris)
brown trout e (Salmo trutta)
brook troute (Salvelinus fontinalis)
Alewife e (Alosa pseudoharengus)
striped basse (Morone saxatillis)
blueback herringe (Alosa aestivalis)
hickory shad e (Umbra pygmaea)
blue catfish (Ictalurus furcatus)
American eelf (Anguilla rostrata)
mud sunfish (Acantharchus pomotis)
pigfishe (Orthopristis chrysoptera)
largemouth bass (Micropterus salmoides)
Coldwater Fishes
rainbow trout e (Oncorhynchus mykiss)
North Carolina
c
Warmwater Fishes
bluegill (lepomis macrochirus)
Coldwater Fishes
No coldwater species occur because no Trout Waters will be crossed by the ACP in North Carolina
Pennsylvania d
Warmwater Fishes
smallmouth bass (Micropterus dolomieui)
walleye (Sander vitreum)
rosyface shiner (Notropis rubellus)
American eelf (Anguilla rostrata)
gizzard shad (Dorosoma cepedianum)
muskellunge (Esox masquinongy)
least brook lamprey (Lampetra aepyptera)
redside dace (Clinostomus elongates)
brown trout e (Salmo trutta)
common carp (Cyprinus carpio)
Coldwater Fishes
rainbow trout e (Oncorhynchus mykiss)
brook trout e (Salvelinus fontinalis)
____________________
a
b
c
d
e
f
Source: WVDNR, 2014a
Source: VDGIF, 2013a
Source: NCDENR, 2014a; NCDENR, 2009
Source: PFBC, 2014b; PFBC, 2014c; PFBC, 2012.
Anadromous species
Catadromous species
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3.1.2.1 West Virginia
Waterbodies with State Fish Classifications
For the ACP, the waterbodies crossed by the proposed AP-1 mainline route in West
Virginia include 54 classified as Category B or B1, 46 classified as Category B2. For the SHP,
the waterbodies crossed by proposed TL-635 pipeline loop include 21 classified as Category B1.
Shavers Fork, which is an important waterbody for recreational trout fishing in Randolph
County, West Virginia, is the largest waterbody along the proposed AP-1 mainline route (West
Virginia Division of Natural Resources [WVDNR], 2014a). The Buckhannon River, which is
the second largest, is the primary waterway in Upshur County, West Virginia, and similarly is
considered an important recreational fishery (Highlands Institute for Environmental Research
and Education [HIERE], 2014).
The WVDNR has implemented a number of projects to restore spawning access for
native brook trout in waters of the State (WVDNR, 2012a). Eight brook trout streams are
crossed by the AP-1 mainline in West Virginia. Table 2C in Appendix 2C of Resource Report 2
includes a list of the waterbodies containing sensitive fish resources crossed by the Projects.
Anadromous Fish
There are no anadromous fish in the land-locked State of West Virginia. In many
locations with access to the sea, brook trout migrate in an anadromous cycle similar to salmon.
In West Virginia, however, brook trout are freshwater fish their entire lives. One diadromous
fish, the American eel, occurs in the Shenandoah River, through the use of an eel ladder at
Millville Dam. However, the Shenandoah River will not be crossed by the Projects.
Hatcheries
Seven coldwater hatcheries and two warmwater hatcheries are maintained by the
WVDNR to supplement fish production (Shingleton, 2013). Warmwater hatcheries produce
species such as blue catfish, channel catfish, muskellunge, bass, sauger, walleye, and northern
pike, which are representative fish species in waterbodies along the proposed AP-1 mainline in
West Virginia (Lobb and Orth, 1991). Coldwater hatcheries primarily produce trout. Protected
paddlefish and shovelnose sturgeon are stocked in the Ohio and Kanawha Rivers in an effort to
enhance populations to their historic range (WVDNR, 2007); however, neither of these rivers nor
the historic range of the sturgeon species will be crossed by the Projects. No hatcheries occur
within the Counties crossed by the Projects, but all streams classified as B1, B2, or HQWs may
contain stocked fish from hatcheries (WVDNR, 2003a).
Game Fish
The following are typical game fish in West Virginia: bluegill, black bass (largemouth,
smallmouth, spotted), rock bass, striped bass, white bass, channel catfish, flathead catfish, chain
pickerel, crappie, muskellunge, northern pike, sauger, walleye, sunfish, game fish hybrids, brook
trout, brown trout, golden rainbow trout, and rainbow trout. Smallmouth bass are one of the
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most popular game fish in the State (WVDNR, 2014b). This species and the other listed game
fish may inhabit the streams crossed by the Projects.
The proposed AP-1 mainline passes through the Monongahela and Kanawha basins of the
Ohio Regional Watershed. Within the basins, the West Fork River, Buckhannon River, Middle
Fork River, Tygart Valley River, and Shavers Fork will be crossed by the ACP. Many popular
recreation streams are located along by the proposed AP-1 mainline route. All recreational areas
for fisheries crossed by the ACP and SHP are designated by State classification on Tables 2A-1
and 2A-2, respectively, in Appendix 2A of Resource Report 2.
Commercial Fisheries
The State of West Virginia does not have a commercial fishing industry. However,
private citizens may obtain a license to manage a Commercial Fishing Preserve for the purposes
of stocking private lakes and ponds. In addition to hatcheries, commercial stocking is an
economic measure which benefits West Virginia’s public recreation programs (WVDNR,
2003b).
3.1.2.2 Virginia
Waterbodies with Commonwealth Fish Classifications
The waterbody crossings by the proposed AP-1 mainline and AP-3 lateral route in
Virginia (586) are all Inland Waterbodies with the Aquatic Life classification. Additionally,
12 of the AP-1 waterbodies are classified as trout waters, including seven wild trout habitat and
five stockable trout streams. The proposed AP-3 lateral does not cross any trout waters. VDGIF
trout waters are described in further detail in Section 3.1.3.2 below.
The 61 waterbody crossings by the proposed AP-3 lateral from approximate MP 53.1 to
MP 77.6 are classified as Aquatic Life with subclassifications under Chesapeake Bay and its
Tidal Tributaries with the following designated uses: Deep Water Aquatic Life and Open Water
Aquatic Life. The Southern Branch Elizabeth River is designated as Open Water over Deep
Water. All others are designated as Open Water, surface to bottom. The AP-3 will not cross any
Migratory and Fish Spawning Nursery or Deep Channel Seasonal Refuge areas. Additionally,
these are all estuarine habitats that do not support freshwater trout.
The ten waterbody crossings by the proposed AP-4 and AP-5 laterals are considered
Inland Waterbodies with the Aquatic Life classification. No waters are classified as trout waters
in the eastern portion of the Commonwealth. All coldwater or trout streams crossed by the AP-1
mainline in Virginia occur in the western portion of the Commonwealth between approximate
MPs 80.0 and 154.4, west of U.S. Highway 29 (VDGIF, 2011).
Anadromous Fish
The Fisheries Division of the VDGIF identifies Anadromous Fish Use Areas, which are
stream reaches that are confirmed or potential migration pathways, spawning grounds, or nursery
areas for anadromous fish. The proposed AP-1 mainline and AP-3 lateral routes both cross
waterbodies in Virginia known to contain anadromous species (see Table 3.1.2-1). Five
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waterbodies contain confirmed anadromous fish use and are listed in Appendix 2C of Resource
Report 2. Anadromous Fish Use Areas in Virginia are discussed in greater detail below in
Section 3.1.3, Fisheries of Special Concern.
Hatcheries
The VDGIF operates nine fish cultural stations around the Commonwealth. These are
categorized as either “rearing stations” or “hatcheries.” Four stations are coolwater and
warmwater facilities that hatch and rear species like muskellunge, northern pike, striped bass,
walleyes, catfish, largemouth bass, bluegill, and redear sunfish. Five stations are coldwater
facilities engaged entirely in trout production, from hatching to raising to stocking sizes. The
Montebello Fish Cultural Station, a small trout rearing facility, is located approximately 13 miles
west of the proposed AP-1 mainline route in Nelson County (MP 165). None of the other
stations are located in the Counties or Cities crossed by the ACP.
Game Fish
Game Fish as defined by the Code of Virginia includes trout, all fish of the sunfish family
(including largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, spotted bass, rock bass, bream, bluegill, and
crappie), walleye, white bass, chain pickerel, muskellunge, northern pike, and striped bass.
There is a continuous, year-round season for all freshwater game and nongame fish with the
exception of special times and limited closures for trout (VDGIF, 2014a).
Regulations for anadromous (coastal) striped bass, alewife, and blueback herring above
and below the fall line in tidal rivers of the Chesapeake Bay, anadromous (coastal) American
shad and hickory shad, and all other saltwater fish below the fall line in tidal rivers of the
Chesapeake Bay, are set by the Virginia Marine Resources Commission. At least 161 of the
waterbodies crossed by the proposed ACP pipeline facilities in Virginia are classified as
supporting recreational fishing and game species. The waters have the Recreation designation as
listed on Table 2A-1 in Appendix 2A of Resource Report 2.
Commercial Fisheries
The Virginia Marine Resources Commission is the Commonwealth agency responsible
for carrying out the Commonwealth’s marine resource management, including control and
issuance of approximately 78 different types of commercial fishing licenses based on gear type,
number of gear, and species (Kirkley, 1997). The commercial fisheries industry in Virginia
includes finfish and shellfish within Virginia marine and estuarine waters or the Territorial Sea
(all inshore waters out to three miles offshore). No commercial fisheries in Virginia are crossed
by the ACP.
3.1.2.3 North Carolina
Waterbodies with State Fish Classifications
Waterbody crossings with State fisheries classifications along the proposed AP-2
mainline route in North Carolina have the following designations: 249 as C, 28 as Sw, and 41 as
NSW. All of the waterbodies are considered warmwater and freshwater. None of the waters
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Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
crossed by the ACP in North Carolina are classified for supporting trout or tidal saltwater
species.
Anadromous Fish
The NCDMF and North Carolina Wildlife Resource Commission (NCWRC) have
designated waterbodies as Anadromous Fish Spawning Areas (AFSA) for the distribution of
anadromous fishes in the State. Anadromous fish species that may occur in the waterbodies
crossed by the proposed AP-2 mainline route in North Carolina are listed in Table 3.1.2-1.
Waterbodies with anadromous fish crossed by the proposed ACP facilities in North Carolina are
listed in Appendix 2C of Resource Report 2. AFSA are discussed in greater detail in
Section 3.1.3, Fisheries of Special Concern.
Hatcheries
The NCWRC operates six fish hatcheries that raise a variety of fish for stocking into
North Carolina's public waters (NCWRC, 2014a). These include two warmwater, one coolwater,
and three coldwater hatcheries. Warmwater hatcheries raise channel catfish, striped bass
(including hybrids), and largemouth bass; the coolwater hatchery raises muskellunge, walleye,
and smallmouth bass; and the coldwater hatcheries raise brook, brown, and rainbow trout. Stateoperated hatcheries stock only public waters; people seeking to stock private lakes and ponds
must contact a privately operated commercial hatchery. None of the State-operated hatcheries
occur within the Counties crossed by the ACP.
Game Fish
State waters with game fish, also called public fishing waters, are classified as inland,
joint, or coastal. The NCWRC has licensing, management, and regulatory authority in inland
waters and the NCDMF has similar authority in coastal waters. Both agencies have licensing
and regulatory authority in joint waters. The proposed AP-2 mainline does not cross any joint or
coastal waters under the jurisdiction of the NCDMF.
Some fish species are designated as inland game fish in all public waters, while others are
designated as inland game fish only in inland waters. The following are designated as inland
game fish in all public waters: black bass (largemouth, smallmouth, and spotted); crappie (white
and black); bluegill, redbreast redear, pumpkinseed, warmouth, green sunfish, Roanoke bass,
rock bass, flier, and all other species of the family Centrarchidae; trout (including but not limited
to brook, brown, and rainbow trout); Kokanee salmon, walleye, and sauger; chain and redfin
pickerel; and muskellunge. Inland game fish found only in inland waters include: white bass;
bodie bass (striped bass hybrid); striped bass; shad (American and hickory); white perch; yellow
perch; spotted sea trout; flounder; and red drum (channel bass, red fish, and puppy drum)
(NCWRC, 2014b). Any waterbody classified as C allows for recreational game fishing and may
contain game fish species.
Commercial Fisheries
The commercial fishing industry of North Carolina, which is managed by the NCDMF, is
a traditional maritime industry. Commercial fisheries in North Carolina include finfish and
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Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
shellfish harvests, but also include aquaculture operations in marine and estuarine waters (North
Carolina Marine Fisheries Commission [NCMFC], 2014). There are no commercial fisheries in
North Carolina crossed by the proposed AP-2 mainline.
3.1.2.4 Pennsylvania
Waterbodies with Commonwealth Fish Classifications
A total of 11 waterbody crossings occur along the proposed TL-636 pipeline loop. Of
these, nine crossings are classified as CWF-High Quality (HQ) and include: Kemerer Hollow
(MP 1.3) and three unnamed tributaries (MPs 1.2, MP 1.7 and MP 1.9); Steels Run (MP 2.6) and
two unnamed tributaries (MP 2.5 and MP 2.9), and Haymakers Run (MP 3.9) and one unnamed
tributary (MP 3.6). Lastly, TL-636 proposes to cross two unnamed tributaries to Turtle Creek
(MP 0.2 and MP 0.6) designated as TSF. Waterbodies crossed by the SHP are listed in
Table 2A-2 in Appendix 2A of Resource Report 2.
PFBC approved trout waters occur within Greene and Westmoreland Counties in
Pennsylvania. The proposed modifications to the Crayne Compressor Station in Green County
will not impact any waterbodies. Within Westmoreland County, the SHP will not cross any
approved trout waters, but stock inputs may arise in creeks near the SHP Project area (PFBC,
2014d). However, no special requirements for avoidance or minimization have been identified.
No Wild Trout Waters, Class A Wild Trout Streams, or Wilderness Trout Streams will be
crossed by the SHP.
Anadromous Fish
There is no anadromous fish habitat in the vicinity of the SHP.
Hatcheries
The closest Commonwealth fish hatchery to Westmoreland County is the Reynoldsdale
State Fish Hatchery, approximately 60 miles to the southeast in Bedford County (PFBC, 2014e).
No Commonwealth fish hatcheries occur within the Counties crossed by the SHP.
Game Fish
Pennsylvania supports a wide variety of game fish, such as trout, steelhead, bass (black,
striped, rock, white), bluegill, carp, catfish (channel and flathead), crappie, muskellunge, perch
(yellow and white), pickerel, and northern pike. The only game fish present in streams in the
vicinity of the proposed SHP Project area are coldwater trout species (PFBC, 2014f).
Commercial Fisheries
Commercial fishing in Pennsylvania is restricted to Lake Erie which is more than
100 miles from the SHP Project area. No commercial fisheries in Pennsylvania will be affected
by the SHP.
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Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
3.1.3 Fisheries of Special Concern
Atlantic and DTI identified fisheries of special concern through review of publicly
available data, acquisition of natural heritage data, and ongoing consultations with applicable
Federal and State/Commonwealth agencies, including the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS),
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) National Marine Fisheries Service
(NOAA Fisheries), U.S. Forest Service (USFS), WVDNR, VDGIF, NCWRC, and PFBC.
Fisheries of special concern include waters that: provide important habitat for foraging, rearing,
or spawning of fish species; represent important commercial or recreational fishing areas; or
support large populations of commercially or recreationally valuable fish species or species listed
for protection at the Federal, State/Commonwealth, or local level. For the States and
Commonwealths crossed by the Projects, fisheries of special concern are described below.
Appendix 2C in Resource Report 2 identifies waterbodies crossed by the Projects that
contain fisheries of special concern as described below. Crossings of waterbodies with
construction timing restrictions associated with fisheries are identified in Tables 2A-1 and 2A-2
in Appendix 2A of Resource Report 2. Federal and State/Commonwealth-listed fish and aquatic
species and State/Commonwealth fish and aquatic species of concern are discussed in
Section 3.7. Essential fish habitat (EFH) is addressed in Section 3.1.6.
The types of fisheries of special concern within the ACP Project area and SHP Project
area vary by State/Commonwealth. For example, commercial fisheries are not a concern in West
Virginia, and anadromous fish habitat does not occur in West Virginia or western Pennsylvania.
The discussions below only include the fisheries of special concern known to occur in the
vicinity of the Projects in each State/Commonwealth.
3.1.3.1 West Virginia
Waterbodies with Time of Year Restrictions
In-stream activities in waterbodies classified as warmwater and trout fisheries in West
Virginia must avoid the fish spawning seasons for these waters or obtain a spawning season
waiver from the WVDNR, Wildlife Resources Section. The spawning season for warmwater
fishery streams and their adjacent tributaries occurs from April through June, while the spawning
season for trout waters and their adjacent tributaries occurs from September 15 through
February 28 (West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection [WVDEP], 2002). Unlike
brook and brown trout, rainbow trout typically spawn during the late Winter and Spring with
peak spawning activity in March and April (National Park Service [NPS], 2015). No timing
restrictions specific to rainbow trout have been established in West Virginia. Waterbodies
classified for warmwater and trout fisheries in West Virginia are discussed in Section 3.1.2.1.
Atlantic and DTI have received correspondence from the West Virginia Field Office of
the FWS for the ACP and SHP. In addition to comments regarding federally listed species, the
FWS identified the brook trout as a species of concern due to declining populations associated
with land conversions and habitat loss. Consequently, the FWS encouraged Atlantic and DTI to
avoid and minimize impacts on streams that contain brook trout habitat through coordination
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with appropriate resource agencies.3 Atlantic will work with WVDNR staff to identify and
implement appropriate measures during construction to minimize or avoid impacts on brook
trout streams and adjacent riparian habitats to the extent practicable, including implementing
time of year restrictions. Copies of agency correspondence for the ACP and SHP are included in
Appendices 1H and 1I, respectively, in Resource Report 1.
Atlantic and DTI received Natural Heritage data from the WVDNR that identified the
rare species of fish in West Virginia that occur in the vicinity of the Projects. Table 3.1.3-1
identifies the rare fish species that occur in streams crossed by the AP-1 mainline. No rare fish
species were identified as occurring near the SHP. Although specific time of year restrictions
have not been identified or provided for these species, it is anticipated that time of year
restrictions will be implemented as identified through permitting.
TABLE 3.1.3-1
Waterbodies with Rare Fish Crossed by the Atlantic Coast Pipeline in West Virginia
County
Waterbodies
Species
Occurrence in Waterbody a
Upshur
Right Fork Middle Fork River (MP 40.0) Cheat Minnow (Pararhinichthys bowersi)
Randolph
West Fork Greenbrier River (MP 69.0)
Tonguetied Minnow (Exoglossum laurae)
Verified extant; 1.2 miles downstream of crossing
Mountain Lick Creek (MP 69.6)
Candy Darter (Etheostoma osburni)
Verified extant; 0.6 miles downstream of crossing
East Fork Greenbrier River (MP 74.2))
Kanawha Sculpin (Cottus kanawhae)
Verified extant; 0.4 mile downstream of crossing
Candy Darter
Verified extant; 0.4 mile downstream of crossing
Candy Darter
Verified extant; 1.4 mile upstream of crossing
New River Shiner (Notropis scabriceps)
Verified extant; 1.4 mile upstream of crossing
Kanawha Minnow (Phenacobius teretulus)
Verified extant; 1.4 mile upstream of crossing
Historical; 0.7 mile upstream of crossing
____________________
a
Verified extant = Occurrence has been recently verified as still existing but the viability of the occurrence is lacking; Historical = Species or
community occurred historically in the State, and there is some possibility that it may be rediscovered. Recent field verification is lacking.
Source: WVNHP, 2015
Public Fishing Lakes
The Projects will have no impact on public fishing lakes in West Virginia. The nearest
public fishing lake occurs on the AP-1 mainline route on the easternmost portion of Stonecoal
Lake, located in Upshur County. Stonecoal Lake is more than 2 miles west of the AP-1 mainline
route (MP 26.3). No pubic fishing lakes are crossed by or located near the SHP.
Stocked Trout Streams
Stocked trout streams are identified in West Virginia based on the fishing regulations that
are implemented. Waters may have general regulations, or special regulations, including catch
and release areas, children and class Q handicap fishing areas, and fly-fishing only areas. Based
on the data provided in the West Virginia Hunting, Trapping, and Fishing Map, the Projects do
not cross any special regulation stocked trout streams (WVDNR, 2013). The proposed AP-1
mainline route, however, crosses three trout stocked streams that fall under the general fishing
regulations. These waters all occur on the Monongahela National Forest (MNF) and include
3
In a comment filed with the FERC, an individual noted concerns regarding potential impacts on habitat improvements funded by Trout
Unlimited within the East Fork Greenbrier River, including the impacts of sedimentation on brook trout habitat.
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Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
West Fork Greenbrier River near MP 68.9, East Fork Greenbrier River near MP 74.2, and the
Little River near MP 76.3.
Special Regulation Areas- Warmwater Species
In addition to special regulation areas for trout, the WVDNR has identified special
regulation areas for warmwater species. These special areas are identified for catch and release
of black bass, muskellunge, and walleye. The Projects do not cross any special regulation areas
for warmwater species (WVDNR, 2013).
U.S. Forest Service Sensitive Species on the Monongahela National Forest
The MNF is located in the Eastern Forest Service Region (Region 9). The Regional
Forester has identified seven sensitive fish species that occur in the MNF. Additionally, the
MNF Land and Resource Management Plan (LRMP) identifies the naturally producing wild
brook trout as a Management Indicator Species (MIS). The sensitive and MIS species on the
MNF are discussed in detail in Section 3.7.2.
3.1.3.2 Virginia
Waterbodies with Time of Year Restrictions
Guidance for the protection of fisheries resources in Virginia emphasize time of year
restrictions when certain species are most sensitive to human activities. Adherence to these
restrictions is not essential for every project, however, and modifications or waivers may be
considered. In Virginia, it is recommended that in-stream activities are avoided during the
following times: brown and brook trout waters from October 1 through March 31; rainbow trout
waters from March 15 through May 15; general warmwater spawning waters from April 15
through July 15; and general coldwater species spawning waters from March 1 through June 30.
Waterbodies classified for warmwater and trout fisheries in Virginia are discussed in
Section 3.1.2.2. Timing restrictions are also recommended for anadromous fish use areas, which
are discussed below.
Review of the Virginia Wildlife Environmental Review Map Service (WERMS)
(VDGIF, 2014b) identified crossings of waterbodies along the proposed AP-1 mainline and AP-3
lateral routes which are known to contain trout and require a timing restriction. In
correspondence with Atlantic, the VDGIF (2015a) provided guidance identifying the
recommended timing of in-stream work by County for wild trout streams. Waterbodies crossed
and associated timing restrictions for trout streams are included in Table 3.1.3-2 below.
Correspondence from the VDGIF (2015a) supplemented with WERMS data identified
Back Creek (MP 84.0) and Folly Mills Creek (MP 134.4) as stockable trout waters. VDGIF
identifies the Cowpasture River (MP 102.3) as a Class VI trout stream (i.e. does not contain a
significant number of trout but is considered good trout stocking water), although trout stocking
is not identified in this stream.4
4
In a comment filed with the FERC, an individual identified the Cowpasture River as a high quality trout stream.
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Resource Report 3
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
TABLE 3.1.3-2
Virginia Fisheries Timing Restrictions
County
Highland
Waterbodies
Designation
Time of Year
Restriction a
Laurel Fork (MP 81.7)
Wild brook trout and/or brown trout October 1 through March 31
Crab Run (MP 92.8 and 96.6)
Wild trout streams known to support October 1 through May 15
brook and/or rainbow trout
Augusta
Hodges Draft (MP 106.7), Ramseys Draft (MP 109.5),
White Oak Draft (MP 115.7), and Orebank Creek
(MP 149.1)
Wild brook trout
October 1 through March 31
Nelson
South Fork Rockfish River (MP 154.4)
Wild brook trout
October 1 through March 31
____________________
a
Recommended time of year to avoid in-stream activities.
Source: VDGIF, 2014b
The Shenandoah Valley Chapter of Trout Unlimited (SVTU) identified the streams in
Table 3.1.3-1 above as locations where the ACP might impact trout populations.5 The SVTU in
particular called out the crossing of the Laurel Fork in Highland County, Virginia. In addition,
the SVTU identified portions of the South River, Upper South River Special Regulation Area
and the South River Delayed Harvest, as two of the premier fisheries for stocked trout in the
Commonwealth of Virgina. These locations are approximately 1.5 and 6.5 miles downstream of
the AP-1 mainline crossing of the South River at MP 143.7. Finally, the SVTU identified that
the ACP has the potential to impact trout fisheries and water quality due to the AP-1 mainline
crossings of Christian’s Creek (MP 137.7) and the Middle River (MP 125.6) in Augusta County.
VDGIF recommends coordination with their Region IV Aquatic Resources Manager to
verify that the ACP does not conflict with trout stocking and angling opportunities in these
waters within Highland and Augusta Counties. Atlantic is coordinating with the Aquatic
Resources Manager and will provide updated correspondence when available.
Anadromous Fish Use Areas
In correspondence with Atlantic, the NOAA Fisheries Northeast Regional Office
recommended avoidance of impacts on anadromous fish populations in Virginia (NOAA
Fisheries, 2014a). NOAA Fisheries specifically identified the Southern Branch Elizabeth River
and Nottaway River as designated confirmed anadromous fish use areas by the VDGIF.
Review of data provided in the WERMS, in addition to correspondence with VDGIF
(2015b), identified crossings of waterbodies along the proposed AP-1 mainline and AP-3 lateral
routes which are known to contain anadromous fish use areas where migration and spawning
occur. For AP-1, Fountains Creek is the only confirmed anadromous fish use area (MP 292.3).
Although the AP-1 mainline crosses the Nottoway River (MP 255.0) and the Meherrin River
(MP 279.0), anadromous fish use areas stop downstream from the crossings more than 4.5 and
2.3 miles, respectively. For AP-3, these areas consist of the Meherrin River (MP 12.4),
Nottoway River (MP 33.2), Blackwater River (MP 39.1), and the Southern Branch Elizabeth
River (MP 77.3). The VDGIF recommends avoidance of in-stream work in anadromous fish
5
In comments filed with the FERC, the SVTU identified concerns related to impacts on trout, especially wild trout, resources along the ACP
route in Virginia.
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Resource Report 3
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
waters and their tributaries generally from February 15 through June 30, with some exceptions
(VDGIF, 2013b). Modification or waivers from time of year standards is considered on a caseby-case basis. A list of waterbodies containing anadromous fish crossed by the ACP is included in
Appendix 2C of Resource Report 2.
In addition to the confirmed anadromous fish use areas identified above, VDGIF
identified Burnett’s Mill Creek, Nansemond River, and Shingle Creek in the City of Suffolk as
Potential Anadromous Fish Use Areas; however, the proposed AP-3 lateral does not to cross
these Potential Anadromous Fish Use Areas. The AP-1 mainline crossing of the James River
(MP 180.4) was identified in WERMS as a Potential Anadromous Fish Use Area. Because this
location is above Bosher’s Dam, the recommended timing for avoidance of in-stream work is
March 15 through June 30 (VDGIF, 2013b).
Public Fishing Lakes
Two public fishing lakes are located within 0.5 mile of the proposed AP-1 mainline, but
these features will not be affected by the ACP. The fishing lakes include Braley Pond, which is
located approximately 0.5 mile north of AP-1 near MP 111.6 in Augusta County, and Fort
Pickett Lake, which is located more than 0.25 mile south of AP-1 near MP 243.4 in Dinwiddie
County. According to the WERMS data, the proposed AP-3 mainline crosses one public fishing
lake, Lake Kilby, at MP 55.9 in Suffolk County, near its confluence with Pitchkettle Creek.
Stocked Trout Lakes and Stream Reaches
VDGIF identifies publicly accessible trout fishing locations based on stocking locations
of rainbow, brown, and brook trout. These locations include designated stocked trout lakes,
reservoirs, ponds, single stocking locations on streams, and stream sections.
Braley Pond is the only publicly accessible stocked trout lake in Virginia within 0.5 mile
of the ACP Project area (WERMS data). Neither the lake nor angling activities at the lake will
be impacted by the ACP.
According to WERMS data, the ACP does not cross any designated stocked trout
reaches. The nearest stocked trout reach is located in South Fork Back Creek, which parallels
the AP-1 mainline route west of MP 150.7 to 152.7 in Augusta County.
Threatened and Endangered Species Waters
Federal and Commonwealth listed threatened and endangered aquatic species in Virginia
include various fish, mussels, and marine mammals. Of these, fish and mussels may be impacted
by the ACP. Discussion of potential impacts on these species is provided in Section 3.7.
The proposed AP-1 mainline route crosses five stream reaches that support various
threatened and endangered aquatic species. These include reaches of the Bullpasture River
(MP 98.3), James River (MP 180.4), Butterwood Creek (MP 248.0), Nottoway River
(MP 255.0), and Meherrin River (MP 279.0). The proposed AP-3 mainline does not cross
stream reaches supporting threatened and endangered species. Additionally, no stream reaches
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Resource Report 3
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
supporting threatened and endangered species occur within 0.5 mile of the proposed compressor
station sites or other aboveground facilities.
USFS Sensitive Species on the George Washington National Forest
The George Washington National Forest (GWNF) is located in the Southern Forest
Service Region (Region 8). The Regional Forester has identified two sensitive fish species that
occur on the GWNF. As with the MNF, the GWNF LRMP identifies wild brook trout as an
MIS. The sensitive and MIS species on the GWNF are discussed in detail in Section 3.7.2.
3.1.3.3 North Carolina
Waterbodies with Time of Year Restrictions
In a meeting with Atlantic on September 24, 2014, NCWRC staff mentioned that
anadromous fish, including American shad, blueback herring, striped bass, and Atlantic sturgeon,
may be an issue. The NCWRC suggested that in-stream construction activities in perennial
streams, including but not limited to the Roanoke River, Black River, and Little River, should
not occur during spawning and early development stages of anadromous fish. This timing
window of in-stream work avoidance is February 15 to September 30. See below for further
discussion of AFSA.
Anadromous Fish Spawning Areas
In correspondence with Atlantic, the NOAA Fisheries Southeast Regional Office
recommended avoidance of impacts on anadromous fish populations in North Carolina (NOAA
Fisheries, 2014b). The Roanoke River, Neuse River, and Cape Fear River were identified as
waterbodies supporting anadromous fish species, such as American shad, alewife, blueback
herring, and striped bass. Copies of agency correspondence for the ACP are included in
Appendix 1H of Resource Report 1.
Atlantic identified inland AFSA along the proposed AP-2 mainline route based on data
from the NCMFC through the State Archives of North Carolina (NCMFC, 1998) as well as
review of “A Reference Guide to the Distribution of Anadromous Fish in North Carolina
Rivers,” which was prepared by NOAA Fisheries on behalf of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
(NOAA Fisheries, 2010). Additionally, GIS shapefiles were provided by the North Carolina
Natural Heritage Program (NCNHP). Review of these sources identified four freshwater streams
along the proposed AP-2 mainline route classified as inland AFSA: Roanoke River (MP 302.0),
Little River (MP 374.4), Neuse River (MP 390.1), and Cape Fear River (MP 440.8). Although
the Tar-Pamlico Basin provides habitat for anadromous fish, there is no AFSA identified in the
upper reaches that will be crossed by the ACP. These resources are managed by the NCWRC
(NCDENR, 2014b).
In addition to AFSA, the proposed AP-2 mainline route crosses Raft Swamp (MP 465.6)
and Humphrey Branch (MP 466.0) which potentially support anadromous fish habitat (NOAA
Fisheries, 2010). Additional tributaries to these streams may also be considered AFSA or
habitat. Known AFSAs and potential habitats along the ACP are identified in Appendix 2C in
Resource Report 2. According to the correspondence letter received from the FWS office in
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Resource Report 3
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
Raleigh, North Carolina, in order to avoid impacts on commercially and recreationally important
anadromous fish species, work in streams with an anadromous fish run should be avoided during
the spawning period of February 15 to June 30.
Designated Trout Waters, Fish Nursery Areas, and Shellfish Growing Areas
No designated trout waters, shellfish growing areas, or fish nursery areas are crossed by
the ACP or located within 0.5 mile of the proposed facilities in North Carolina.
Significant Aquatic Endangered Habitats
Based on data available from the NCMFC through the State Archives of North Carolina
(NCMFC, 1998) and shapefiles provided by the NCNHP, the proposed AP-2 mainline and AP-3
lateral routes cross 49 waterbodies and wetlands identified as significant aquatic endangered
habitat (see Table 3.1.3-3). These waterbodies and wetlands may support habitat for Federal or
State-listed fish species in addition to other sensitive aquatic species such as mussels.
Significant aquatic endangered habitats in North Carolina occur in the Chowan, Tar-Pamlico,
Neuse, and Cape Fear River Basins.
Natural Heritage Program Natural Areas
The NCNHP (2014) identifies significant terrestrial and aquatic natural areas that are of
special biodiversity significance. These areas are rated by NCNHP staff and other professional
biologists based on field surveys conducted. More than half of these areas are entirely or
partially in conservation ownership; however, many remain privately owned and are unprotected
from potential impacts associated with development. Once a natural area is purchased, it is
considered for dedication as a State Nature Preserve. If a natural area is not available for
purchase, its ecological significance can be recognized through a registry agreement (Registered
Heritage Areas), which is a voluntary agreement with the landowner that provides limited
protection but recognizes the owner's commitment to conservation of the area. The proposed
AP-2 mainline route crosses 14 natural areas identified by the NCNHP and the AP-3 lateral route
crosses one natural area, but none of these are State Nature Preserves or Registered Heritage
Areas (NCNHP, 2005 and 2013). The natural areas that are crossed by the ACP are identified in
Table 3.1.3-4 below.
3.1.3.4 Pennsylvania
DTI researched fisheries of special concern along the proposed TL-636 pipeline loop and
in the vicinity of other SHP facilities in Pennsylvania through the Pennsylvania Natural Diversity
Inventory (PNDI) Project Environmental Review online system (see Appendix 1I of Resource
Report 1). According to the PNDI receipt generated from the review, no known sensitive
fisheries resources are crossed by or in the vicinity of the proposed SHP facilities in
Pennsylvania. The receipt indicted that no further review for the SHP is required with the PFBC,
which has jurisdiction over sensitive aquatic species and habitats in Pennsylvania.
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Resource Report 3
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
TABLE 3.1.3-3
Significant Aquatic Endangered Habitats Crossed by the Atlantic Coast Pipeline in North Carolina
Facility/County
Waterbodies / Wetlands
Milepost
River Basin
AP-2
Northampton
UNT to Jacks Swamp
293.1
Chowan
Northampton
Jacks Swamp
294.7
Chowan
Northampton
UNT to Jacks Swamp
295.4
Chowan
Halifax
UNT to Marsh Swamp
310.2
Tar-Pamlico
Halifax
Marsh Swamp
312.1
Tar-Pamlico
Halifax
UNT to Marsh Swamp
313.9
Tar-Pamlico
Halifax
Beaverdam Swamp
315.2
Tar-Pamlico
Halifax
UNT to Beaverdam Swamp
316.0
Tar-Pamlico
Halifax
UNT to Burnt Coat Swamp
317.0
Tar-Pamlico
Halifax
Burnt Coat Swamp
318.6
Tar-Pamlico
Halifax
Jacket Swamp
319.5
Tar-Pamlico
Halifax
UNT to Jacket Swamp
319.8
Tar-Pamlico
Halifax
UNT to Breeches Swamp
321.1
Tar-Pamlico
Halifax
Breeches Swamp
321.8
Tar-Pamlico
Halifax
UNT to Rocky Swamp
323.3
Tar-Pamlico
Halifax
Rocky Swamp
324.1
Tar-Pamlico
Halifax
UNT to Fishing Creek
325.4
Tar-Pamlico
Halifax
UNT to Fishing Creek
325.8
Tar-Pamlico
Halifax
Fishing Creek
325.9
Tar-Pamlico
Nash
UNT to Fishing Creek
326.8
Tar-Pamlico
Nash
UNT to Fishing Creek
327.1
Tar-Pamlico
Nash
UNT to Black Swamp (Race Prong)
328.7
Tar-Pamlico
Nash
Black Swamp
329.1
Tar-Pamlico
Nash
UNT to Pine Log Branch
330.1
Tar-Pamlico
Nash
UNT to Swift Creek
332.3
Tar-Pamlico
Nash
Swift Creek
332.6
Tar-Pamlico
Nash
UNT to Flat Rock Branch
332.9
Tar-Pamlico
Nash
UNT to Flat Rock Branch
333.6
Tar-Pamlico
Nash
UNT to Flat Rock Branch (Mill Pond Branch)
334.1
Tar-Pamlico
Nash
Flat Rock Branch
335.6
Tar-Pamlico
Nash
Flat Rock Branch
336.4
Tar-Pamlico
Johnston
Little River
374.4
Neuse
Sampson
Little Juniper Run
408.5
Cape Fear
Sampson
Big Juniper Run
408.8
Cape Fear
Sampson
Beaverdam Swamp
410.1
Cape Fear
Sampson
Beaverdam Swamp
410.5
Cape Fear
Sampson
Beaverdam Swamp
410.9
Cape Fear
Sampson
Beaverdam Swamp
411.4
Cape Fear
Sampson
Starlins Swamp
414.0
Cape Fear
Cumberland
Mingo Swamp
414.4
Cape Fear
Cumberland
UNT to Mingo Swamp
414.8
Cape Fear
Cumberland
Black River
416.2
Cape Fear
AP-3
Northampton
Jacks Swamp
0.6
Chowan
Northampton
UNT to Fountains Creek
2.2
Chowan
Northampton
UNT to Fountains Creek
2.6
Chowan
Northampton
Cypress Creek
5.4
Chowan
Northampton
UNT to Cypress Creek
5.9
Chowan
Northampton
Cypress Creek
7.4
Chowan
Northampton
Cypress Creek
10.0
Chowan
____________________
Sources: NCMFC, 1998; NCNHP, 2014
Notes:
UNT = Unnamed tributary
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Resource Report 3
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
TABLE 3.1.3-4
Natural Heritage Program Natural Areas Crossed by the Atlantic Coast Pipeline in North Carolina
Facility/County
Natural Area
Milepost
Area Crossed (feet)
Halifax
Mush Island
302.0 to 302.3
1452
Halifax
Mush Island
303.3 to 304.2
4713
Halifax
Rocky Swamp Aquatic Habitat
324 to 324.1
30
Halifax/ Nash
Fishing Creek Aquatic Habitat
325.9 to 326.0
92
Nash
Swift Creek Aquatic Habitat
332.6
61
Nash
Stony Creek Aquatic Habitat
340.6 to 340.7
78
Nash
Middle Tar River Aquatic Habitat
351.3 to 351.4
84
Wilson
Contentnea Creek Aquatic Habitat
365.4 to 365.0
30
Johnston
Little River Aquatic Habitat
374.4 to 374.5
40
Johnston
Little River Aquatic Habitat
375.4 to 375.5
40
Johnston
Cowbone Oxbows/ Sage Pond Natural Area
390.0 to 390.2
686
AP- 2
Johnston
Hannah Creek Swamp
392.8 to 393.0
877
Cumberland
Rockfish Creek Corridor
440.8 to 441.2
1597
Cumberland
Rockfish Creek Corridor
441.4 to 441.5
317
Big Marsh Swamp
459.0 to 459.7
3124
Robeson
Cypress Bay
466.5 to 466.8
703
Robeson
Moss Neck Savanna
472.2 to 472.7
2072
AP-3
Northampton
Meherrin River Margarettsville Bottomlands
11.8 to 12.2
1432
Robeson
____________________
Source: NCNHP, 2014
Pennsylvania Code Title 25, Dam Safety and Waterway Management Chapter 105,
Subchapter A states that the PADEP will set time limits for the commencement and completion
of work under a permit (PA Code, 2014d). Additionally, although the PNDI indicated no further
review is required, construction time windows are typically included in both general and
individual permits to protect stocked (no work from March 1 to June 15) and wild (no work from
October 1 to December 31) trout unless a waiver is granted by the PFBC (PFBC, 2014g).
3.1.4 General Impacts and Mitigation
3.1.4.1 Pipeline Facilities
Atlantic and DTI will use the open-cut, flume, dam-and-pump, conventional bore,
cofferdam, or horizontal directional drill (HDD) methods to construct the proposed pipelines
across waterbodies. These methods are described in detail in Section 1.5.2.1 of Resource
Report 1. The specific method planned for each waterbody crossing along the proposed ACP
and SHP pipeline routes are identified in Tables 2A-1 and 2A- 2 in Appendix 2A of Resource
Report 2, respectively.
For all crossing methods, construction activities for the Projects will be conducted in
accordance with the FERC’s Upland Erosion Control, Revegetation, and Maintenance Plan
(Plan) and Wetland and Waterbody Construction and Mitigation Procedures (Procedures). The
Plan and Procedures identify a variety of measures designed to minimize impacts on waterbodies
and associated fisheries, such as the installation and maintenance of sediment and erosion
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Resource Report 3
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
controls at waterbody crossings. Additional temporary workspace (ATWS) will be located at
least 50 feet from the water’s edge at each waterbody crossing (with the exception of sitespecific modifications as requested by Atlantic and DTI and approved by the FERC). These
measures will minimize potential impacts due to erosion and movement of sediment from upland
areas into waterbodies.
During construction, activities such as clearing and grading of stream banks, removal of
riparian vegetation, in-stream trenching, trench dewatering, and backfilling could result in the
modification of aquatic habitats. Impacts could include increased sedimentation and turbidity,
increased temperature, decreased dissolved oxygen concentrations, releases of existing chemical
and nutrient pollutants from disturbed sediments, and introduction of chemical contaminants,
such as fuel and lubricants, due to spills. Additionally, vegetation clearing and soil compaction
could potentially increase runoff and subsequent stream or peak flows.
As shown in Tables 2A-1 and 2A-2 in Appendix 2A, Atlantic and DTI will install the
proposed pipelines across most waterbodies using a dry crossing method such as cofferdam,
dam-and-pump, or flume. These methods involve isolating and temporarily diverting the flow of
water around or across the trenching area. The methods allow trenching activities to occur
within a relatively dry stream or riverbed, thereby avoiding the introduction of sediment and
turbidity into the waterbody during construction. The flume method, which involves diverting
water across the trenching area through one or more flume pipes, or the cofferdam method,
which involves diverting water around a temporary diversion structure, are often used on
waterbodies containing sensitive fisheries because they provide for continued fish passage
through the construction work area.
For the ACP, the HDD method is currently being evaluated for six river crossings
pending the results of geotechnical investigations and final engineering. These crossing include
the James, Roanoke, Cape Fear, Nottoway, Blackwater, and Southern Branch Elizabeth Rivers.
Waterbody crossing methods are also being evaluated for the SHP, but do not currently include
any HDDs. Because there will be no in-stream construction activities where the HDD method is
used, the potential for turbidity and sedimentation in the waterbody is nearly eliminated. Other
HDD crossings for the ACP could be included as a result of ongoing engineering design or
consultation with permitting agencies.
Due to site constraints, the open-cut method is proposed for the Meherrin River. This
method will involve trenching through the waterbody while water continues to flow through the
trenching area. Excavators will then be used to dig a trench in the flowing waterbody from one
or both banks of the waterbody. Where the waterbody is too wide to excavate the trench from
the banks, equipment may operate from within the waterbody with approval from the appropriate
regulatory agencies. Equipment operating within the waterbody will be limited to that needed to
construct the crossing. These activities have the potential to temporarily increase turbidity in the
waterbody. Upon completion of the construction activities, the water clarity will return to
preconstruction conditions. Open-cut activities will follow the Procedures to avoid or minimize
impacts on water quality and the duration of in-stream activities will be limited.
Removal of vegetation and habitat at waterbody crossings has the potential to affect
aquatic resources by reducing shade, cover, and nutrient input, and by affecting stream banks and
sediment filtration. Temporary loss of riparian vegetation within the construction work area may
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Resource Report 3
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
affect water temperatures by removing shade sources. Due to the linear nature of the pipeline
construction, and the design of most waterbody crossings perpendicular to the stream, it is
expected that the potential increase in water temperature and effects on aquatic species will be
slight. Use of the HDD method will eliminate the need for riparian vegetation clearing from the
riverbanks at these crossings. As a result, the potential for increased runoff or turbidity
associated with vegetation clearing and soil disturbance will be eliminated or reduced.
Temporary construction bridges will be used during all phases of construction to cross
waterbodies where the pipeline is not installed using the HDD method. The Procedures allow
clearing equipment and equipment necessary for the installation of temporary bridges to cross
each waterbody once prior to bridge installation. Temporary bridges will be needed from initial
right-of-way clearing through final restoration, so the bridges will remain in place outside
recommended in-stream work periods. However, use of the bridges by construction vehicles will
avoid turbidity and sedimentation impacts due to vehicles crossing the streambed.
In-stream blasting, if required to excavate the pipeline trench, could have acoustic
impacts on fisheries resources. Sound pressure waves can change fish behavior or injure/kill fish
by rupturing swim bladders or causing internal hemorrhaging (Hastings and Popper, 2005).
Blasting may be required along segments of the proposed pipeline route where hard bedrock is
located at or within 60 inches of the ground surface (see Resource Report 6). Table 2A-1in
Appendix 2A of Resource Report 2 identifies waterbody crossing where blasting may be
required. If required, blasting will occur after the work area has been isolated from stream flow,
which will minimize impacts on fisheries. If blasting is required in waterbodies containing
sensitive aquatic species, Atlantic and DTI will consult with Federal and State/Commonwealth
agencies to determine what, if any, additional mitigation measures are necessary.
In-stream construction activities typically will take place in less than 24 hours for minor
waterbodies and less than 48 hours for intermediate waterbodies (except where blasting is
required, which could take longer). The rapid pace of construction along with the other
measures identified in the Procedures will reduce the impacts of sedimentation and turbidity in
the waterbodies and on aquatic life. Additionally, it is expected that individual fish, where
present, will temporarily relocate upstream or downstream of the crossing locations, where
necessary, to avoid turbid water.
Atlantic and DTI will prepare and implement a Spill Prevention, Control, and
Countermeasures Plan (SPCC Plan) to avoid or minimize potential impacts on aquatic resources
due to inadvertent releases of fuel or mechanical fluids (to be provided in Appendix 1F of the
final Resource Report 1). The SPCC Plan will require that hazardous materials such as fuels and
lubricating oils will be stored in upland areas away from waterbodies. Additionally, equipment
refueling and lubricating at waterbodies will typically take place in upland areas that are 150 feet
or more from the edge of the waterbody and any adjacent wetlands.
The proposed pipelines will be hydrostatically tested following installation using water
withdrawn from surface or municipal sources. Potential impacts on fisheries resources due to
surface water withdrawals and or discharges are described below.
Based on the current schedule for the Projects, in-stream construction activities could
take place year round. Nonetheless, Atlantic and DTI will comply with time of year restrictions,
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Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
and conditions unless specifically authorized by the appropriate agencies. To the extent that instream activities are necessary outside construction timing windows for fish species, Atlantic and
DTI will seek approvals from the appropriate agencies for these crossings on a case-by-case
basis.
Following construction, streambeds and banks will be restored to preconstruction
contours and stabilized. Disturbed areas will be seeded and mulched, as necessary, to prevent
erosion. Permanent erosion and sediment controls will be installed as described in the
Procedures and the Erosion and Sediment Control Plan (ESC Plan). Operation of the pipeline is
not expected to impact fisheries.
Inadvertent Surface Returns
As discussed above, Atlantic is currently evaluating the use of the HDD crossing method
to install the pipeline beneath six rivers, each of which contains fisheries resources. The HDD
method is considered an effective technique for avoiding in-stream impacts on fisheries by
eliminating the need for in-stream excavation. Drilling requires the use of a fluid (e.g., a nontoxic biodegradable bentonite clay and water mixture) to lubricate the drill bit and facilitate the
removal of cuttings from the drill path. Because the fluid is under pressure during drilling, it is
possible for bentonite to escape to the surface from the drill pathway if the bit encounters
existing substrate fractures or channels that lead to the surface. The movement of drilling fluid
to the land surface or into stream channels is known as an inadvertent return.
Bentonite is non-toxic to aquatic organisms (Hair et al., 2002), but as with any fine
particulate material (e.g., suspended soils in a muddy river) high concentrations can interfere
with oxygen exchange by gills (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency [EPA], 1986). In the
event of an inadvertent return to a waterbody, the impact on fisheries will be short-term and
limited to individual fish in the immediate vicinity of the drilling fluid.
If spawning habitat is nearby, both anadromous and resident fish reproduction could be
affected. Bentonite sediment can also smother macro-invertebrates and adversely affect filter
feeders. Additionally, bentonite can exacerbate or enhance the effects of compounds toxic to
fish and aquatic invertebrates if those compounds are present in aquatic habitats. Similar to
other fine-grained suspended particulates, however, bentonite in flowing water is likely to remain
in suspension longer than in standing water.
In general, the potential for inadvertent surface returns is highest near the HDD drill entry
and exit locations when the drill bit is working nearest the surface, but is dependent on numerous
factors including substrate characteristics, head pressure of the drilling fluid, topography,
elevation, and subsurface hydrology. If an inadvertent return occurs in a waterbody, drilling
fluid entering the water column could cause fish, if present, to move away from the area of
increased turbidity. To control the inadvertent return, an attempt will be made to plug the flow
path by adding thickening agents to the drilling fluid, such as additional bentonite, cottonseed
hulls, or other non-hazardous materials. Drilling fluid that enters the waterbody will likely
disperse through the water column and be washed downstream of the crossing. Therefore, the
effects of an inadvertent return on fish species and habitats are expected to be minor, localized,
and short term.
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Additional information on response procedures in the event of an inadvertent return will
be provided in Atlantic’s and DTI’s Horizontal Directional Drill Fluid Monitoring, Operations,
and Contingency Plan (HDD Plan). This plan will be provided in Appendix 1F of the final
Resource Report 1.
Hydrostatic Testing
Once installed, the proposed pipelines will be hydrostatically tested as described in
Resource Reports 1 and 2. Hydrostatic testing involves filling the pipeline with water,
pressurizing the water, and checking for pressure losses due to leaks. Potential impacts on
fisheries resources associated with hydrostatic testing include the following: entrainment of fish,
reduction of downstream flows, and impairment of downstream uses due to water withdrawals;
and erosion or scour due to water discharges.
The proposed pipelines will be hydrostatically tested with water obtained from surface or
municipal sources (see Table 2.2.6-1 in Resource Report 2) in accordance with State/
Commonwealth regulations and required permits. No chemicals or additives will be mixed with
the water. During testing, Atlantic will implement the following measures which will avoid or
minimize impacts on fisheries resources:

installing appropriately sized screens on water intakes to avoid entrapment per
agency recommendations;

controlling water withdrawal rates to avoid impingement;

placing water intakes above streambeds to avoid disturbing sediments on the
streambeds;

re-using water from one test section to another (termed ‘cascading’), where
practicable, to reduce the amount of water withdrawn for testing;

discharging water back to the waterbody after filtration or settling through an
approved holding structure to avoid affecting water quality; or

discharging water into containment structures such as hay bales and/or filter bags
located in well-vegetated upland areas; and

regulating discharge rates to prevent scour in streambeds or erosion in uplands.
In addition to these measures, Atlantic and DTI will coordinate with the applicable
agencies, as well as implement the Procedures and the ESC Plan, to reduce the potential for
depletion of stream flow at water sources and allow for fish passage.
3.1.4.2 Aboveground Facilities
No waterbodies will be affected by the construction or operation of the aboveground
facilities. Therefore, no fisheries resources will be affected by these facilities.
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3.1.5 Site-Specific Impacts and Mitigation
3.1.5.1 West Virginia
Site specific impacts and mitigation for West Virginia have not been identified at this
time. This section will be updated as survey results are obtained and agency consultations are
completed.
3.1.5.2 Virginia
Site specific impacts and mitigation for Virginia have not been identified at this time.
This section will be updated as survey results are obtained and agency consultations are
completed.
3.1.5.3 North Carolina
Site specific impacts and mitigation for North Carolina have not been identified at this
time. This section will be updated as survey results are obtained and agency consultations are
completed.
3.1.5.4 Pennsylvania
Site specific impacts and mitigation for Pennsylvania have not been identified at this
time. This section will be updated as survey results are obtained and agency consultations are
completed.
3.1.6 Essential Fish Habitat
The Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (MSA) (16 United
States Code [USC] 1801 et seq.) established a management system for marine fisheries resources
in the United States. Specifically, Congress charged NOAA Fisheries and fishery management
councils, along with other Federal and State/Commonwealth agencies and the fishing
community, to identify habitats essential to managed species, which include marine, estuarine,
and anadromous finfish, mollusks, and crustaceans. These habitats, referred to as EFH, include
“those waters and substrate necessary to fish for spawning, breeding, feeding, or growth to
maturity.”
Section 302 of the MSA establishes eight regional fishery management councils. Among
other responsibilities, these councils develop management plans for fisheries requiring
conservation and management. Under Section 303(a)(7) of the MSA the fishery management
plans are required to identify and describe EFH. Portions of the proposed ACP pipelines will be
constructed and operated in areas managed under the New England, Mid-Atlantic, and South
Atlantic Management Councils, and the Atlantic Highly Migratory Species Management
Division. Resource management plans have been developed for each of these regions, as
referenced in Section 3.1.6.1. The proposed SHP facilities do not cross areas that support EFH.
Under Section 305((b)(2)-(4)) of the MSA, Federal agencies that authorize, fund, or
undertake activities that may adversely affect EFH must consult with NOAA Fisheries. The
EFH guidelines (50 CFR 600.06 – 600.930) outline the process to satisfy the consultation
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requirement. NOAA Fisheries recommends consolidated EFH consultations with interagency
coordination procedures required by other statutes, such as the National Environmental Policy
Act, the Fish and Wildlife Coordination Act, the Endangered Species Act (ESA), and the Federal
Power Act to reduce duplication and improve efficiency (50 CFR 600.920(e)). Generally, the
EFH consultation process includes the following steps:
1.
Notification – The action agency should clearly state the process being used for
EFH consultations (e.g., incorporating EFH consultation into an Environmental
Impact Statement or ESA permit).
2.
EFH Assessment – The action agency should prepare an EFH assessment that
includes both identification of affected EFH and an assessment of impacts.
Specifically, the assessment should include:

a description of the proposed action;

an analysis of the effects (including cumulative effects) of the proposed
action on EFH, the managed fish species, and major prey species;

the Federal agency’s views regarding the effects of the action on EFH; and

proposed mitigation, if applicable.
3.
EFH Conservation Recommendations - After reviewing the EFH assessment,
NOAA Fisheries should provide recommendations to the action agency regarding
measures that can be taken by that agency to conserve EFH.
4.
Agency Response - Within 30 days of receiving the recommendations, the action
agency must respond to NOAA Fisheries. The response must include a
description of which conservation recommendations proposed by the agency to
avoid, mitigate, or offset the impact of the proposed activity on EFH will be
implemented and which will not, and why.
Although the FERC is the lead action agency for consultation, Atlantic and DTI are
preparing analyses and consulting with NOAA Fisheries to identify and assess potential impacts
on EFH.
3.1.6.1 Identification of Managed Fish Species and Essential Fish Habitats
Atlantic and DTI reviewed multiple online resources to determine if EFH occurs in the
vicinity of the Projects, including the following:

NOAA Fisheries Essential Fish Habitat Mapper (NOAA Fisheries, 2014c);

Guide to Essential Fish Habitat Designations in the Northeastern United States
(NOAA Fisheries, 2014d);

NOAA Estuarine Living Marine Resources (ELMR) program database (NOAA
Fisheries, 2014e);

Fishery Management Plans and Amendments for species managed by the New
England, Mid-Atlantic, and South Atlantic Fisheries Management Councils (New
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Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
England Fishery Management Council, 2014; Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management
Council, 2014; South Atlantic Fishery Management Council, 2014);

Final Consolidated Atlantic Highly Migratory Species Fishery Management Plan
and Amendments for species managed by the Atlantic Highly Migratory Species
Management Division (NOAA Fisheries, 2014f);

Summary of Essential Fish Habitat Designations for the 10x10 Square
Coordinates: 37 00.00 N, 76 20.0 W, 36 50.0 N, and 76 30.0 W (NOAA
Fisheries, 2014g), which NOAA Fisheries identified as the reference for EFH for
the Southern Branch Elizabeth River (NOAA Fisheries, 2014b); and

NOAA Fisheries Greater Atlantic Summary of Essential Fish Habitat and
General Habitat Parameters for Federally Managed Species table (NOAA
Fisheries, 2014h).
Atlantic identified several areas containing EFH in the ACP Project area. Atlantic is
assessing potential impacts on these areas and consulting with NOAA Fisheries. Descriptions of
the EFH and summary of agency consultations to date are provided below. Copies of
correspondence with NOAA Fisheries for EFH are provided in Appendix 1H of Resource
Report 1.
Atlantic consulted with NOAA Fisheries’ Southeast and Northeast Regional Offices to
introduce the ACP and request technical assistance (Dominion, 2014a; Dominion, 2014b). In
their reply, the Southeast Regional Office (NOAA Fisheries, 2014a) concurred with Atlantic that
no EFH will be affected by the proposed ACP in North Carolina because the AP-2 mainline
route does not cross or pass near EFH.
The Northeast Regional Office (NOAA Fisheries, 2014b) identified EFH where the
proposed AP-3 mainline route crosses the Southern Branch Elizabeth River (approximate
MP 77.3) in Virginia.
Atlantic is currently evaluating use of the HDD method to cross the Southern Branch
Elizabeth River, which would avoid adverse effects on EFH in that river. Atlantic will continue
to consult with the NOAA Fisheries Northeast Regional Office regarding avoidance,
minimization, and mitigation measures to avoid adverse effects on EFH, as necessary
(Dominion, 2014b; NOAA Fisheries, 2014b). The following section provides a summary of
Atlantic’s assessment for managed fish species and EFH potentially affected by the ACP.
NOAA Fisheries Northeast Region
In the NOAA Fisheries Northeast Region, Atlantic identified EFH species and their
associated life stages with the potential to occur near or within the ACP Project area in Virginia
(NOAA Fisheries, 2014g). Follow-up requests were made to the NOAA Fisheries to confirm
that the EFH species and life stages identified for assessment is complete. Based on these and
follow-up consultations with NOAA Fisheries, 14 EFH species were identified for analysis
(NOAA Fisheries, 2015a). These species and associated EFH characteristics for each life stage
are summarized in Table 3.1.6-1. The two waterbodies potentially containing EFH species are
included in Appendix 2C of Resource Report 2.
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TABLE 3.1.6-1
Summary of Essential Fish Habitat and General Habitat Parameters for the Atlantic Coast Pipeline a
Essential Fish Habitat Species
Life Stage b
Essential Fish Habitat Characteristics c
New England Species
Windowpane flounder (Scophthalmus aquosus)
Clearnose skate (Raja eglanteria)
Little skate (Leucoraja erinacea)
Winter skate (Leucoraja ocellata)
Juvenile
Mud/fine sand bottom habitats; <25 °C; 5.5 to 36 ppt; 1 to 100 m
Adult
Mud/fine sand bottom habitats; <26.8 °C; 5.5 to 36 ppt; 1 to 75 m
Juvenile
Soft, gravel, or rock bottom habitats; 9 to 21 °C; 1 to 500 m
Adult
Soft, gravel, or rock bottom habitats; 9 to 21 °C; 1 to 400 m
Juvenile
Sand, gravel, or mud bottom habitats; 4 to 15 °C; 1 to 137 m
Adult
Sand, gravel, or mud bottom habitats; 2 to 15 °C; 1 to 137 m
Juvenile
Sand, gravel, or mud bottom habitats; 4 to 16 °C; 1 to 40 0m
Adult
Sand, gravel, or mud bottom habitats; 5 to 15 °C; 1 to 371 m
Mid-Atlantic Species
Bluefish (Pomatomus salatrix)
Juvenile
Adult
Atlantic butterfish (Peprilus triacanthus)
Summer flounder (Paralicthys dentatus)
Mixing/seawater portions of estuaries; 19 to 24°C; 23 to 36 ppt
Estuarine waters; 14 to 16°C; >25 ppt
Egg
Pelagic waters; mixing portions of estuaries; 11 to 17 °C; 25 to 33 ppt;
10 to 1,829 m
Larvae
Pelagic waters; mixing portions of estuaries; 9 to 19 °C; 6.4 to 37 ppt;
10 to 1,829 m
Juvenile
Pelagic waters; mixing/seawater portions of estuaries; 3 to 28 °C; 3 to 37
ppt; 10 to 365 m
Adult
Pelagic waters; mixing/seawater portions of estuaries; 3 to 28 °C; 4 to 26
ppt; 10 to 365 m
Larvae
Pelagic shelf waters; mixing/seawater portions of estuaries;
9 to 12 °C; 23 to 33 ppt; 10 to 70 m; nearshore
Juvenile
Demersal; mixing/seawater portions of estuaries; salt marsh creeks/
seagrass beds/mudflats/open bays; >11 °C; 10 to 30 ppt; 0.5 to 5 m in
estuary
Adult
Demersal waters; shallow mixing/seawater portions of estuaries; shallow
coastal waters; fresh water; 0 to 25 m
South Atlantic Species
Red drum (Sciaenops occelatus)
Coastal Migratory Pelagics
Black sea bass (Centropristis striata)
Egg
Estuarine wetlands; flooded salt marshes and brackish marsh; tidal
creeks, mangrove fringe, seagrass beds; 2 to 33 °C; low salinity;
<50 m
Juvenile
Shallow and deeper portions of estuaries associated with river mouths;
oyster bars; and front beaches; 2 to 33 °C; 20 to 40 ppt;
<50 m.
Adult
Inlets, shoals, and capes along coast, sallow bay bottoms or oyster reef
substrate, and nearshore artificial reefs; 2 to 33 °C; low salinity; <50 m
Juvenile
Demersal waters; mixing/seawater portions of estuaries; rough bottom;
shellfish/eelgrass beds; structures >6 °C; >18 ppt; 1 to 38 m
Adult
King mackerel (Scomberomorus cavalla)
Spanish mackerel (Scomberomorus maculatus)
Not described
Larvae
Demersal waters; mixing/seawater portions of estuaries; structured
habitat; >6 °C; >20 ppt; 20 to 50 m
Egg
Pelagic waters; > 17 °C; 32 to 36 ppt
Larvae
Pelagic waters; 26-31 °C; 26 to 37 ppt
Juvenile
Pelagic waters; > 20 °C
Adult
Pelagic waters; > 20 °C
Egg
Pelagic waters; > 17 °C; 32 to 36 ppt
Larvae
Pelagic waters; 19-30 °C; > 28 ppt
Juvenile
Estuaries; > 17 °C; 32 to 26 ppt
Adult
Estuaries; pelagic waters; 21-31 °C; 32 to 36 ppt
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TABLE 3.1.6-1 (cont’d)
Summary of Essential Fish Habitat and General Habitat Parameters for the Atlantic Coast Pipeline a
Essential Fish Habitat Species
Cobia (Rachycentron canadum)
Life Stage b
Egg
Offshore
Larvae
Offshore
Juvenile
Coastal waters; high salinity
Adult
Highly Migratory Species
Sandbar shark (Carcharhinus plumbeus)
Dusky shark (Carcharhinus obscures)
Essential Fish Habitat Characteristics c
Estuaries; mud, sand, coral reef substrates
Neonates
Shallow coastal waters; < 25 m (Habitat Area of Particular Concern)
Juvenile
Shallow coastal waters; < 25 m (Habitat Area of Particular Concern)
Adult
Shallow coastal waters; < 50 m (Habitat Area of Particular Concern)
Neonates
Shallow coastal waters, inlets, estuaries; < 25 m
____________________
a
Based on 10-minute by 10-minute latitudinal/longitudinal designated EFH quadrants identified through consultation with NOAA
Fisheries in the Northeast Region.
b
Designated EFH along the ACP only occurs in areas where EFH characteristics are present.
c
°C = degrees Celsius; m = meters; ppt = parts per thousand; > = greater than; and < = less than
Sources: NOAA Fisheries, 2003, 2014g, 2014h, 2014i, 2015a.
Assessment of Potential Effects on EFH
The estuarine water column of the Southern Branch Elizabeth River provides seasonal
nursery areas for young developmental stages of fish and coastal sharks, but also as migratory
habitat for anadromous species. The river is designated as a Habitat Area of Particular Concern
for the sandbar shark, serving as a primary and secondary nursery for this large coastal species.
Habitat Areas of Particular Concern are subsets of EFH that merit special considerations to
conserve habitat.
Many of the potential impacts of the ACP on EFH and managed fish species will be
similar to those described for surface waters in Resource Report 2 and fisheries in Section 3.1.4.
As noted above, Atlantic is evaluating the HDD method for the crossing of the Southern Branch
Elizabeth River, which would avoid direct impacts on the waterbody. However, impacts on EFH
could result from an inadvertent return of drilling fluid, inadvertent hazardous material spills,
run-off of sediment from construction areas into the waterbody, or water withdrawals for
hydrostatic testing.
During construction, Atlantic will minimize potential impacts on aquatic resources,
including EFH, through implementation of the measures described in the Procedures.
Additionally, as discussed above, Atlantic will prepare and implement an SPCC Plan (for
prevention and response measures in the event of a spill) and HDD Plan (for response measures
in the event of an inadvertent return). These plans will be provided in Appendix 1F of the final
Resource Report 1.
If bentonite-drilling fluid is released into the river during an inadvertent release, the
volume is expected to be relatively minimal. Additionally, due to the river current, high
waterway traffic, high turbidity, and presence of existing pollutants, an inadvertent release will
not likely be visible or result in significant impact on EFH.
Water may be withdrawn from the Southern Branch Elizabeth River for mixing drilling
fluid. Estimated water volumes and withdraw rates are provided in Resource Report 2. The
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potential effects on EFH from water withdrawals and discharges will be minimal and similar to
those described for fish resources in Section 3.1.4.1 above. As described in that section, Atlantic
will implement multiple measures to avoid or minimize impacts on managed fish species and
their prey due to entrainment or impingement, chemical exposure, or turbid water.
Atlantic believes that the ACP will have no adverse effect on EFH or managed species in
the Southern Branch Elizabeth River if the pipeline is installed by HDD. If the HDD method is
confirmed through engineering review, Atlantic will request concurrence from the NOAA
Fisheries Northeast Regional Office with a no adverse effect finding for impacts on EFH in the
Southern Branch Elizabeth River. If the HDD method cannot be implemented, Atlantic will
conduct an EFH assessment to determine if the ACP may adversely affect EFH, and will consult
with the NOAA Fisheries Northeast Regional Office to identify appropriate conservation
measures to avoid, mitigate, or offset adverse impacts on EFH for the Southern Branch Elizabeth
River.
3.2
VEGETATION
This section describes the vegetation resources that could potentially be affected by
construction and operation of the proposed ACP and SHP facilities. Included in this section are
descriptions of ecoregions crossed by the Projects; plant communities found within the ACP
Project area and SHP Project area; descriptions of unique, sensitive, or protected vegetation
communities; status of consultations with agencies regarding these communities; and the
methods that Atlantic and DTI will employ to minimize impacts on vegetation resources.
Information presented in this section was gathered from various sources including: the USGS
National Gap Analysis Program (GAP) Land Cover Data; the USGS National Hydrography
Dataset; digital aerial photography; various published scientific literature, agency reports and
consultations, and organization reports; and other publicly accessible State/Commonwealth and
Federal databases. Threatened and endangered plant species are discussed in Section 3.7 below.
3.2.1 Existing Vegetation Resources
Vegetation resources within the ACP Project area and SHP Project area are identified and
described in terms of regional vegetation communities (see Section 3.2.1.2); unique, sensitive,
and protected vegetation (see Section 3.2.1.3); and invasive plant species (see Section 3.2.1.4).
Potential effects on vegetation resources from the Projects are discussed in Sections 3.2.2 and
3.2.3. These sections identify conservation measures and methods that Atlantic and DTI will
employ to minimize impacts on the vegetation resources. Appendix 3A-1 summarizes the
vegetation communities and sub-communities within the ACP Project area and SHP Project area.
3.2.1.1 Ecoregions
Ecoregions are areas with similar environmental resources and characteristics including
geology, physiology, vegetation, climate, soils, land use, wildlife, and hydrology (EPA, 2013).
Classification at the ecoregion level describes broad-scale environmental factors that contribute
to the dominant natural vegetation that may be present within a region. The proposed ACP
facilities cross portions of eight ecoregions, including the Western Allegheny Plateau (WAP),
Central Appalachians (CA), Ridge and Valley (RV), Piedmont, Northern Piedmont (NP), Blue
Ridge (BR), Southeastern Plains (SP), and Mid-Atlantic Coastal Plains (MACP) (see
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Figure 3.2.1-1). The SHP is located entirely in the WAP ecoregion (see Figure 3.2.1-1).
Crossing lengths for each ecoregion are summarized in Table 3.2.1-1.
TABLE 3.2.1-1
Summary Statistics for Ecoregions Affected by the Atlantic Coast Pipeline and Supply Header Project
Project/Facility Type/Facility
State/Commonwealth
Ecoregions
Total Miles Crosseda
ATLANTIC COAST PIPELINE
AP-1
WV
Central Appalachians
30.0
Ridge and Valley
19.2
Western Allegheny Plateau
30.9
VA
Blue Ridge
13.9
Northern Piedmont
9.8
Piedmont
108.6
Ridge and Valley
69.1
Southeastern Plains
11.2
NC
Southeastern Plains
<0.1
AP-2
NC
Middle Atlantic Coastal Plain
2.0
Southeastern Plains
179.6
AP-3
VA
Middle Atlantic Coastal Plain
56.1
Southeastern Plains
9.3
NC
Southeastern Plains
12.1
AP-4
VA
Piedmont
3.1
AP-5
VA
Piedmont
1.0
Pipeline Facilities Total
556.0
SUPPLY HEADER PROJECT
TL-636
PA
Western Allegheny Plateau
3.9
TL-635
WV
Western Allegheny Plateau
32.8
Pipeline Facilities Total
36.7
_________________
a
The numbers in this table have been rounded for presentation purposes. As a result, the totals may not reflect the exact sum of the
addends in all cases.
Source: EPA, 2010
Western Allegheny Plateau
The WAP ecoregion extends across Ohio, southwestern Pennsylvania, northwestern West
Virginia, and northeastern Kentucky. It is characterized by broad valleys, ridges, and rounded
hills, with many lakes, marshes, and bogs throughout the region. Precipitation in the WAP is
normally distributed during the year with rain being higher in Spring and Summer. The
ecoregion is approximately 72 percent forested with a combination of mixed oak and mixed
temperate forests. Wet hemlock forests are also present, but their range has declined
significantly (USGS, 2014; LandScope America, 2014).
Central Appalachians
The CA ecoregion extends from southern Pennsylvania to Virginia, and includes a
portion of the Blue Ridge Mountains. The geology of the ecoregion is unique, featuring igneous
basalts, limestone, sandstone, and sedimentary shale. Precipitation varies throughout the region,
with 30 to 85 inches of rain and approximately 50 to 190 inches of snow. The CA is dominated
by forested lands, which account for approximately 89 percent of the land cover and contribute
to high biodiversity in the region (USGS, 2014; LandScope America, 2014).
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Climate in the CA is ideal for the northern hardwood and Appalachian oak (mixed red
and white oak) species that grow in the forests (USGS, 2014). Other common vegetation
includes Kate’s mountain clover, yellow nailwort, and low false bindweed (LandScope America,
2014). Typical understory shrubs occurring in the CP include great laurel and mountain laurel,
which are crucial for the structure and health of the forests (Chastain and Townsend, 2008).
Ridge and Valley
The RV ecoregion extends from southeastern New York to northeastern Alabama,
including parts of New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland, West Virginia, Virginia, Tennessee, and
Georgia. The ecoregion consists predominately of forest (56 percent) in rocky terrain. Much of
the remaining areas consist of agricultural (30 percent) and developed land (9 percent).
Topography is complex including thousands of caves (USGS, 2014; LandScope America, 2014).
Climate in the RV is mild supporting vegetation communities with high biodiversity
including over a thousand plant species. The most common tree complexes are Appalachian oak,
oak hickory, pine, northern hardwoods, oak-chestnut, eastern white pine, white oak, and Virginia
pine (USGS, 2014). However, forests in the RV have been affected by logging and other forest
management programs (USGS, 2014; LandScope America, 2014; USFS 2014).
Blue Ridge
The BR is considered a unique ecoregion in the country because of the spatial and
temporal heterogeneity of its geology, topography, and floristics (LandScope America, 2014).
The land is 35 percent managed by public agencies, including the USFS (George Washington
and Jefferson National Forests) and the National Park Service (Great Smoky and Shenandoah
National Parks). The BR consists of approximately 80 percent forested land, 14 percent
agricultural land, and one percent developed land (USGS, 2014; LandScope America, 2014).
Climate is warm temperate to boreal supporting a variety of plant communities. Common tree
species at low elevations are mixed oak; at mid elevations are oak, red spruce, tulip poplar, and
chestnut; and at high elevations are spruce-fir, Fraser fir, and balsam fir (USGS, 2014; World
Wildlife, 2014).
Piedmont
The Piedmont ecoregion encompasses the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains and
serves as a transitional zone between the mountains to the west and the coastal plain to the east.
The area is characterized by broad ridges and hills, with a geology that includes igneous,
metamorphic, and sedimentary rock. The region primarily consists of agricultural land and
managed woodland. Climate is temperate supporting forests dominated by hardwood. The most
common tree species are oak hickory, loblolly pine, water oak, willow oak, laurel oak,
cherrybark oak, American holly, bald cypress, water tupelo, and ironwood (South Carolina
Department of Natural Resources, 2014).
Northern Piedmont
The NP ecoregion is similar to the Piedmont, serving as a link between mountains and the
coastal plain. It runs through parts of New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland,
3-36
Resource Report 3
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
Washington, D.C., and Virginia. The NP is characterized by irregular plains, open valleys, and
hills. The soils have a stony to limestone base which supports both forested and agricultural
lands. Climate and common tree species are similar to the Piedmont (USGS, 2014).
Southeastern Plains
The SP is the largest ecoregion in the eastern United States, ranging from Maryland to the
Gulf of Mexico. The region consists of flat plains interspersed with croplands, pastures, forests,
and wetlands with primarily sandy soils. Climate is warm with much rainfall contributing to a
longer growing season than in other regions. Common tree species are hickory, oak, and pine.
Historically, the forests in the region mostly contained hardwoods, but much of the area is now
dominated by pine, including managed pine plantations (USGS, 2014).
Mid-Atlantic Coastal Plain
The MACP ecoregion encompasses the coastal region extending from New Jersey to
Florida. The ecoregion borders the Atlantic Ocean and contains a mix of forests, agricultural
lands, and wetlands, including Chesapeake Bay shore lands. Climate is generally warm yearround with humid Summers and mild Winters. Common tree species are bald cypress and
longleaf pines (USGS, 2014).
The proposed Projects cross various upland and wetland land cover classes that support
diverse vegetation communities. As presented in Table 8.1.1-1 in Resource Report 8, the
proposed ACP pipeline facilities cross upland forest/woodland (238.5 miles), cultivated cropland
(86.4 miles), wetlands (68.2 miles), pasture land (62.0 miles), tree plantation/harvested forest
(59.2 miles), developed land (22.5 miles), and open land (16.2 miles). The proposed SHP
pipeline facilities cross upland forest/woodland (32.5 miles), pasture land (2.1 miles), developed
land (1.3 miles), cultivated cropland (0.4 mile), wetlands (0.2 mile), tree plantation/harvested
forest (<0.1 mile), and open land (<0.1 mile). The types of upland woodland/forest crossed by
the Projects include coniferous forests, deciduous forests, mixed forests, deciduous savanna and
glades, and floodplain and riparian forests (see Table 3.2.1-2).
Typical plant species found in the dominant land cover classes are described below.
Additional information on agricultural, developed, and open lands is provided in Resource
Reports 5 and 8, and additional information on wetlands is provided in Resource Report 2.
Agricultural Vegetation
Agriculture accounts for a large percentage of the lands crossed by the Projects (see
Table 8.3.1-1 in Resource Report 8). Common crops include the following: tobacco, soybeans,
corn, apples, tomatoes, peanuts, wheat, grapes, grains, sweet potatoes, and hay (see Resource
Report 5). Many of the former hardwood forests in the region have been converted into pine
plantations for tree harvest. Pasture primarily consists of grasses used for grazing livestock and
for farming. The most common species in pastures crossed by the proposed facilities are fescue
grass and orchard grass.
3-37
TABLE 3.2.1-2
Upland Forest/Woodland Crossed by the Atlantic Coast Pipeline and Supply Header Project (in miles)a
Coniferous Forests
State
Miles
%b
WV
0.1
0.2
VA
0.0
0.0
AP-2
NC
21.1
43.8
AP-3
VA
0.0
0.0
NC
0.0
0.0
AP-4
VA
0.0
0.0
AP-5
VA
0.0
0.0
21.2
Project/Facility Type/Facility
Deciduous Forests
Mixed Forests
Deciduous Savanna
and Glade
Floodplain and
Riparian
%b
Miles
%b
Miles
%b
Miles
%b
4.8
7.9
53.7
88.3
0.2
0.3
2.1
45.3
39.7
66.6
58.4
0.0
0.0
2.1
19.4
40.2
1.0
2.1
2.7
5.6
2.3
18.4
5.3
42.4
0.0
0.0
0.5
26.3
1.0
52.6
0.0
0.0
<0.1
<0.1
0.8
99.9
0.0
0.0
<0.1
0.0
0.2
99.9
0.0
0.0
8.9
72.3
30.3
128.6
53.9
2.9
Miles
Total Upland
Forest/Woodland
Miles
%b
3.4
60.9
100.0
1.8
114.0
100.0
4.0
8.3
48.2
100.0
4.9
39.2
12.5
100.0
0.4
21.1
1.9
100.0
<0.1
<0.1
0.8
100.0
<0.1
0.0
0.2
100.0
1.2
13.5
5.7
238.5
100.0
ATLANTIC COAST PIPELINE
AP-1
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Pipelines Facilities Total
SUPPLY HEADER PIPELINE
TL-636
PA
0.0
0.0
0.4
22.2
0.5
27.8
0.1
5.6
0.8
44.4
1.8
100.0
TL-635
WV
0.0
0.0
3.4
11.1
26.7
86.9
0.0
0.0
0.6
2.0
30.7
100.0
0.0
0.0
3.8
11.7
27.2
0.1
0.3
1.4
4.3
32.5
100.0
Pipelines Facilities Total
83.7
____________________
a
The numbers in this table have been rounded for presentation purposes. As a result, the totals may not reflect the exact sum of the addends in all cases.
b
Percent represents the percent of the total pipeline route length crossing a particular upland forest/woodland.
Source: USGS GAP, 2011
Resource Report 3
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
Upland Forest/Woodland Habitats
Coniferous Forests
Coniferous forests have cone-bearing trees with needle-like leaves and are mostly
evergreen. These forests are commonly found in locations with cooler Summers and long
Winters. The most common coniferous trees are spruce, fir, pine, and hemlock. Many
coniferous forest species are found in the CA and RV ecoregions. Warmer regions, like the SP,
contain mostly cypress and cedar. Loblolly pine plantations are found in the Piedmont region,
and longleaf pine plantations are found in the MACP region.
Deciduous Forest
Deciduous forests (mesic-wet and xeric-mesic) grow best in drier, acidic soils on ridges
and mountains and in areas with cold Winters and hot Summers (WVDNR, 2014c). Deciduous
forests typically consist of broadleaf trees, shrubs, perennial herbs, and mosses. Although the
forest types change depending on ecoregion, the most common species found in the ACP Project
area and SHP Project area are red oak, white oak, hickory, and chestnut. Many deciduous forest
species are found in the BR and Piedmont ecoregions.
Mixed Forests
Mixed forests are typically found in temperate to humid climates. In the BR ecoregion,
mixed forests consist of oak-hickory-pine forests with hardwoods found in the understory. In the
lower parts of the Piedmont ecoregion, mixed forests are dominated by longleaf pines, which
have replaced hardwoods in many areas due to lumber production. Mixed forests have had the
most land use changes because of agriculture.
Deciduous Savanna and Glade
Deciduous savanna and glade communities are primarily found in the CA ecoregion
where there are shallow soils at higher elevations. Typical species include white cedar, sugar
maple, four-leafed milkweed, and pignut hickory. Lower elevations of the savanna are typically
surrounded by fragmented agriculture (Conservation Gateway, 2014).
Floodplain and Riparian Forests
Floodplain and riparian forests, which are located adjacent to waterbodies, are important
vegetation communities due to their role in flood control, abundance of biodiversity, and
usefulness in agriculture. Some of the common vegetation types found in floodplain and riparian
forests in the ACP Project area and SHP Project area are bald cypress, loblolly pine, water
tupelo, black willow, Christmas fern, switch cane, and sneezeweed.
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Resource Report 3
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
Wetlands
The types of wetlands found in the ACP Project area and SHP Project area include
palustrine emergent and palustrine forested. The ACP also crosses palustrine scrub-shrub,
estuarine intertidal emergent, and estuarine subtidal unconsolidated bottom wetland types.
Typical tree species in forested wetlands include red maple, sweetgum, and swamp tupelo.
Typical species in scrub-shrub wetlands include red ash, woolgrass, and southern wax myrtle.
Typical species in emergent wetlands are cottongrass, bulrush, hopsedge, and brownish
beaksedge.
Open Land
Open lands include disturbed lands, grasslands, shrub lands, beach and shore lands, and
cliff, canyon, and talus lands. In some cases, these lands lack vegetation or have little
vegetation. In other cases, vegetation consists of grasses, shrubs, or mosses. Typical species in
grassland and herbaceous areas include American holly, little bluestem, Japanese stiltgrass, and
woodoats. The ACP and SHP will affect very little land assigned to this category.
3.2.1.2 Unique, Sensitive, and Protected Vegetation Communities
This section identifies and describes unique, sensitive, and protected vegetation
communities (including communities associated with sensitive wildlife species) identified to date
along or within the proposed ACP Project area and SHP Project area. These communities were
identified through acquisition and review of natural heritage data and consultation with
applicable State/Commonwealth agencies for the Projects. Information on these communities is
summarized in Table 3.2.1-3. Federal and State/Commonwealth-listed plant species are
discussed in Section 3.7 of this report.
State/Commonwealth Natural Heritage Communities
West Virginia
Atlantic and DTI received data from the West Virginia Natural Heritage Program
(WVNHP) regarding sensitive communities and species that are crossed by the proposed Projects
(WVNHP, 2015). Based on a review of these data, no sensitive communities or element
occurrence records of species are crossed by the ACP or SHP. Atlantic and DTI will continue to
consult with the WVNHP to determine if sensitive communities and species are crossed by the
proposed Projects and if specific surveys are required for conservation sites.
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Resource Report 3
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
TABLE 3.2.1-3
Unique, Sensitive, and Protected Vegetation Communities Crossed by the Atlantic Coast Pipeline and Supply Header Project
Project/Facility
Type/Facility
State/
Commonwealth
Site Name
Milepost In
Milepost Out
Feet Crossed
Miles
Crossed
Not Applicable
Not applicable
Not
applicable
Not
applicable
Not
applicable
ATLANTIC COAST PIPELINE
AP-1
WV
VA
AP-2
AP-3
AP-4
NC
VA
Back Creek Habitat Zone
83.7
84.1
2,122
0.4
Lantz Mountain Habitat Zone
85.2
85.4
742
0.2
Sounding Knob
91.1
92.0
5,077
1.0
Crab Run SCU
92.8
92.8
16
<0.1
Shenandoah Mountain Trail
105.4
105.6
1,074
0.2
Cochrans
135.2
135.4
991
0.2
Lyndhurst
144.4
147.3
13,845
2.6
Miry Run
255.8
256.4
3,226
0.6
Emporia Power Line Bog
285.4
285.8
1,914
0.4
Upper Fontaine Creek Habitat Zone
290.3
292.6
12,038
2.3
Nottoway River - Fort Pickett SCU
255.0
255.7
46
<0.1
Nottoway Basin
254.7
255.2
2,306
0.4
Cypress-Gum Swamp
392.8
393.0
892
0.2
Mesic Mixed Hardwood Forest
421.5
422.1
3297
0.6
Brownwater Levee Forest
421.6
422.1
2595
0.5
Mesic Pine Savanna
472.4
472.7
1,328
0.3
Lower Fontaine Creek
12.4
12.6
1,110
0.2
Handsom-Gum Powerline
28.2
29.0
4,089
0.8
Great Dismal Swamp: Northwest
Section
63.9
66.9
15,470
2.9
1.2
Lummis Flatwoods
50.6
51.9
6,569
Great Dismal Swamp
59.4
72.4
41,093
7.8
NC
Not applicable
Not applicable
Not
applicable
Not
applicable
Not
applicable
VA
Not applicable
Not applicable
Not
applicable
Not
applicable
Not
applicable
120,841
22.9
TBD
TBD
Not
applicable
Not
applicable
TBD
TBD
Pipeline
Facilities
Total
SUPPLY HEADER PROJECT
TL-636
PA
TL-635
WV
Not applicable
Not applicable
Pipeline
Facilities
Total
____________________
Source: NCNHP, 2014; VDCR, 2014b and 2014c, WVNHP, 2015
3-41
Not
applicable
Resource Report 3
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
Red Spruce Forests
Originally, the mountains of northern and eastern West Virginia contained approximately
470,000 acres of red spruce (Picea rubens). These red spruce stands were severely reduced due
to clear cutting in the nineteenth century, such that today only approximately 29,600 acres
remain. Red spruce-northern hardwood ecosystems are ecologically complex and provide
suitable habitat for federally listed salamanders, flying squirrels, and bats. Further information
on red spruce forests is discussed below in the Monongahela National Forest section.
Virginia
Atlantic consulted the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation (VDCR)
NHP to identify sensitive, unique, and protected plant communities along the proposed ACP
pipeline routes. The VDCR defines natural heritage resources as habitat for rare, threatened, or
endangered plants and animals, unique or exemplary natural communities, and significant
geologic formations (VDCR, 2014a). The location of rare species found in the sensitive
communities identified along the proposed pipeline routes have not been disclosed at the request
of the VDCR NHP. Additional discussion of federally and State/Commonwealth protected
species and/or USFS management indicator species that occur within the natural area preserves,
conservation sites, or stream conservation units (SCU) crossed by the ACP is provided in Section
3.7 of this report. Information provided by this agency suggests that the proposed ACP will
cross portions of 17 Commonwealth-listed areas as described below. Copies of agency
correspondence are provided in Appendix 1H of Resource Report 1.
The VDCR (2014a) identified natural area preserves, conservation sites, SCUs, and
ecological integrity units that support sensitive, unique, or protected vegetation communities
within 2 miles of the proposed ACP pipeline routes. According to VDCR (2014a), natural area
preserve systems were created in 1989 to protect the most significant natural areas of Virginia.
Conservation sites are defined as “key areas of the landscape that warrant further review for
possible conservation action because of the natural heritage resources they contain.” Each site
encompasses “one or more rare plant, animal, or natural community designed to include the
element, its associated habitat, buffer, or other adjacent land thought necessary for the element’s
conservation.” SCUs are “stream reaches that contain aquatic natural heritage resources.”
Atlantic will continue to consult with the VDCR to determine the requirements to conduct plant
species surveys for conservation sites.
Ecological Integrity Units, based on the Virginia Natural Landscape Assessment, are
used to characterize and measure the significance of conservation lands in Virginia.
Conservation lands that are unfragmented are grouped by cores. The cores are based on the
value of the habitat and ranked accordingly. Habitat fragmentation causes discontinuous habitats
for certain species, and could possibly cause population fragmentation. When habitats are cut by
developments or roads, it species that rely on large areas of habitat for survival and reproduction
are potentially threatened. Table 3.2.1-4 describes the Virginia Ecological Integrity Units, and
how they relate to the sensitive vegetation communities described below. The ecological
integrity scores are as follows: Outstanding (C1); Very High (C2); High (C3); Moderate (C4);
and General (C5).
3-42
Resource Report 3
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
TABLE 3.2.1-4
Ecological Integrity Units and Sensitive Communities Crossed by the Atlantic Coast Pipeline in Virginia
Ecological
Integrity Unit
Milepost In
Milepost Out
Feet Crossed
Miles Crossed
Back Creek Habitat Zone
C2
83.7
84.1
2,122
0.4
Lantz Mountain Habitat Zone
C5
85.2
85.4
742
0.2
Sounding Knob
C2
91.1
92.0
5,077
1.0
Crab Run SCU
Not applicable a
92.8
92.8
16
<0.1
Shenandoah Mountain Trail
C3
105.4
105.6
1,074
0.2
Cochrans
C5
135.2
135.4
991
0.2
Lyndhurst
C5
144.4
147.3
13,845
2.6
Miry Run
C4
255.8
256.4
3,226
0.6
Emporia Power Line Bog
C3
285.4
285.6
1,914
0.4
Upper Fontaine Creek Habitat Zone
C2
290.3
292.6
12,038
2.3
Nottoway River - Fort Pickett SCU
C4
255.0
255.7
46
<0.1
Nottoway Basin
C4
254.7
255.2
2,306
0.4
Lower Fontaine Creek
C3
12.4
12.6
1,110
0.2
Handsom-Gum Powerline
C3
28.2
29.0
4,089
0.8
Great Dismal Swamp: Northwest Section
C5
63.9
66.9
15,470
2.9
C3, C5
50.6
51.9
6,569
1.2
C1, C2, C5
59.4
72.4
41,093
7.8
Site Name
Lummis Flatwoods
Great Dismal Swamp
____________________
a
The Crab Run Stream Conservation Unit (SCU) does not have an Ecological Integrity Unit.
Source: VDCR, 2014b and 2014c
The VDCR (2014a) identified five natural area preserves in the vicinity of the proposed
ACP Project area in Virginia. Atlantic reviewed the proposed routes relative to these preserves
and determined that none will be impacted by the ACP. Atlantic will continue to consult with
the VDCR to confirm if buffers are required to protect the natural area preserves in the vicinity
of the proposed ACP Project area. The locations of the preserves relative to the proposed ACP
Project area are as follows:

Folly Mills Creek Fen State Natural Area Preserve is located approximately
1.0 mile to the southwest of the proposed AP-1 mainline route near MP 133.1 in
Augusta County.

Cowbane Prairie State Natural Area Preserve is located approximately 1.9 miles
to the southwest of the proposed AP-1 mainline route near MP 140.9 in Augusta
County.

Naked Mountain State Natural Area Preserve is located approximately 1.6 miles
north of the proposed AP-1 mainline route near MP 170.5 in Nelson County.

Cypress Bridge State Natural Area Preserve is located approximately 1.9 miles
north of the proposed AP-3 lateral route near MP 29.4 in Southampton County.

South Quay Sandhills State Natural Area Preserve is located approximately
1.1 miles southwest of the proposed AP-3 lateral route near MP 38.5 in
Southampton County.
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Resource Report 3
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
The VDCR (2014a) also identified 20 conservation sites and SCUs containing unique,
sensitive, and protected vegetation community areas within 2 miles of the proposed pipeline
routes. Of these, three sites (Naked Mountain Addition Open Space Easement and Natural Area
Preserve Dedication Project, North Fork Floodplain Conservation Site, and Southampton One
and Two Easement Projects) will not be crossed or otherwise affected by the proposed ACP.
The remaining sites identified by VDCR are described below. Potential impacts on these sites
are discussed in Section 3.2.4.
Back Creek Habitat Zone
The Back Creek Habitat Zone, which consists of a series of high elevation pasturelands,
is a Commonwealth-listed conservation site that supports significant natural communities and
habitats of rare terrestrial plants including the pearly everlasting (Anaphalis margaritacea). The
Back Creek Habitat Zone is categorized as having very high ecological importance (C2). The
proposed AP-1 mainline route crosses 0.4 mile (2,122 feet) of the conservation site between
MPs 83.7 and 84.1 in Highland County, Virginia. No known occurrences of rare species are
found along the route (VDCR, 2015a). Based on consultations with the VDCR, surveys for plant
species in this area are not required; however, restoration of the right-of-way will need be
coordinated with the VDCR (VDCR, 2015a). Results of this coordination will be provided to the
FERC when it becomes available.
Lantz Mountain Habitat Zone
The Lantz Mountain Habitat Zone, a high elevation mountain, is a Commonwealth-listed
conservation site that supports habitats of rare terrestrial plants and animals or significant natural
communities. The pearly everlasting is associated with this conservation site. The proposed AP1 mainline route crosses 0.2 mile (742 feet) of the site between MPs 85.2 and 85.4 in Highland
County. Based on consultations with the VDCR (2015a and 2015b), no occurrences of sensitive
plant species occur along the proposed route; therefore, field surveys for plant species are not
required.
Sounding Knob
Sounding Knob is a Commonwealth-listed conservation site that encompasses higher
elevations containing significant natural communities and provides habitat for rare terrestrial
plants and animals. Sounding Knob is categorized as having very high ecological importance
(C2). One native plant species of interest associated with this conservation site is the white
alumroot (Heuchera alba). The proposed AP-1 mainline route crosses approximately 1.0 mile
(5,077 feet) of the conservation site between MPs 91.1 and 92.0 in Highland County. The route
does not cross any known occurrences of Commonwealth or federally listed terrestrial plant
species at the site (VDCR, 2014b, 2015c). Based on consultations with the VDCR (2015a), field
surveys for plant species are not required at this site.
Crab Run Stream Conservation Unit
Crab Run is a SCU that borders habitats for rare aquatic plants and a Commonwealth rare
aquatic insect (heteropteran or “true bug”). The proposed AP-1 mainline route crosses less than
0.1 mile (16 feet) of the SCU at MP 92.8 in Highland County. Atlantic confirmed with VDCR
3-44
Resource Report 3
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
staff that the construction crossing methods for this stream will follow the FERC’s Procedures to
avoid impacts on water quality (VDCR, 2015a). Crab Run is currently proposed to be crossed
using the dam-and-pump or flume method. Additional consultation with VDCR will continue to
assess impacts on this site.
Shenandoah Mountain Trail
Shenandoah Mountain Trail is a Commonwealth-listed conservation site that borders
habitats of rare terrestrial plants or significant natural communities. The conservation site is
categorized as having high ecological importance (C3). The area is home to a globally rare
amphibian, the Cow Knob salamander, which is recognized as a USFS management indicator
species within the GWNF. The proposed AP-1 mainline route crosses 0.2 mile (1,074 feet) of
the conservation site from MP 105.4 to MP 105.6 in Augusta County. No known occurrences of
rare plants occur along the route (VDCR, 2014b, and 2015b); however, Atlantic will conduct
surveys for Cow Knob salamanders as discussed in Section 3.7 below. Additional consultation
with VDCR will continue to assess impacts on plants at the site.
Cochrans
Cochrans is a Commonwealth-listed conservation site that contains a significant cave due
to its geology, hydrology, and aesthetics; there are no rare plants associated with this cave
(VDCR, 2015b). The cave contains rare invertebrates including the federally threatened
Madison cave isopod and the globally rare Madison cave amphipod. The proposed AP-1
mainline route crosses 0.2 mile (991 feet) of the site between MPs 135.2 and 135.4 in Augusta
County. VDCR (2015b) commented about the protection of groundwater hydrology to protect
the rare invertebrates associated with this cave. Additional consultation with VDCR will
continue to assess impacts on the site.
Lyndhurst
Lyndhurst is a Commonwealth-listed conservation site that contains sinkhole ponds,
mixed forests, and pastures which contain habitat for rare plants that are federally and
Commonwealth-listed. The site is categorized as having general ecological importance (C5).
Virginia sneezeweed (Helenium virginicum), which has a Federal listing as threatened and a
Commonwealth listing as endangered, has been documented at this conservation site (VDCR
2014a, 2014b, 2015a, 2015b). The proposed AP-1 mainline route crosses 2.6 miles (13,845 feet)
of the site between MPs 144.4 and 147.3 in Augusta County. VDCR (2015a, 2015b) commented
about the sinkhole ponds in this area and said that the protection of groundwater hydrology at the
site is important. Additional consultation with VDCR will continue to assess impacts on the site.
Miry Run
Miry Run is a Commonwealth-listed conservation site that contains potential habitat for
rare species, including a globally rare and federally endangered plant, Michaux’s sumac (Rhus
michauxii), which is associated with pine plantations. The proposed AP-1 mainline route crosses
0.6 mile (3,226 feet) of the conservation site between MPs 255.8 and 256.4 in Brunswick
County, but avoids known populations of Michaux’s sumac (VDCR, 2014b and 2014c).
Additional consultation with VDCR will continue to assess impacts on the site.
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Resource Report 3
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
Emporia Powerline Bog
Emporia Powerline Bog is a Commonwealth-listed conservation site along a flat, herbdominated powerline right-of-way that supports many Commonwealth rare plants requiring a
bog environment. The conservation site is categorized as having high ecological importance
(C3). The proposed AP-1 mainline route crosses 0.4 mile (1,914 feet) of the site between MPs
285.4 and 285.8 in Greensville County. Several rare plants may occur within approximately
300 feet of the proposed ACP Project area (VDCR, 2014b and 2015c). VDCR (2015a)
commented about protecting and understanding the local hydrology and water quality of the site
in order to protect the rare plants dependent on these habitat features. Additional consultation
with VDCR will continue to assess impacts on the site.
Upper Fontaine Creek Habitat Zone
The Upper Fontaine Creek Habitat Zone is a Commonwealth-listed conservation site that
supports habitats of rare terrestrial plants or significant natural communities including Bald
Cypress – Water Tupelo Brownwater Swamp and Coastal Plain Bottomland Forest. The
conservation site is categorized as having very high ecological importance (C2). The proposed
AP-1 mainline crosses 2.3 miles (12,038 feet) of the conservation site between MPs 290.3 and
292.6 in Greensville County; however, the proposed route does not cross known occurrences of
rare terrestrial plants associated with this conservation site (VDCR, 2014b and 2014c). The
VDCR (2015a) commented about protecting the water quality of Fontaine Creek. Additional
consultation with VDCR will continue to assess impacts on the site.
Nottoway River – Fort Pickett Stream Conservation Unit
The Nottoway River – Fort Pickett SCU is a Commonwealth-listed site that borders
habitats of rare aquatic plants and animals. Riparian habitat at the site supports Federal and
Commonwealth-listed mussels and fish. The proposed AP-1 mainline route crosses less than
0.1 mile (46 feet) of the site between MPs 255.0 to 255.7 in Brunswick County. Atlantic is
conducting ongoing mussel assessments along the Nottoway River. The VDCR (2014a)
commented about protecting the water quality and hydrology in order to maintain the habitat of
aquatic animals. Additional consultation with VDCR will continue to assess impacts on the site.
Nottoway Basin
Nottoway Basin is a Commonwealth-listed conservation site that borders habitats of rare
terrestrial plants, animals, and significant natural communities, including old growth, bald
cypress-water tupelos. These significant natural features help protect the water quality in the
Nottoway River. One fairly common plant species at the site is Cuthbert’s turtlehead, which is
an obligate to wetlands in the Eastern Mountains, Piedmont, and Atlantic Coastal Plain regions.
The proposed AP-1 mainline route crosses 0.4 mile (2,306 feet) of the site between MPs 254.7 to
255.2 in Dinwiddie and Brunswick Counties. The VDCR (2014a) commented about maintaining
the intact mesic forests for the benefit of the associated resources. Additional consultation with
VDCR will continue to assess impacts on the site.
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Resource Report 3
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
Lower Fontaine Creek
Lower Fontaine Creek is a Commonwealth-listed conservation site that borders habitats
of uncommon terrestrial plants or significant natural communities, including old growth, bald
cypress-water tupelos. The site is categorized as having high ecological importance (C3). One
uncommon plant in the Commonwealth found at the site is the crowfoot fox sedge (Carex cruscorvi), which is an obligate species in wetlands in the Eastern Mountains, Piedmont, and Atlantic
Coast Plain regions (U.S. Department of Agriculture [USDA] Natural Resources Conservation
Service [NRCS], 2014a). The proposed AP-3 lateral route crosses 0.2 mile (1,110 feet) of the
site between MPs 12.4 to 12.6 in Greensville and Southampton Counties. The site does not cross
any element occurrences of a federally or Commonwealth-listed species (VDCR, 2014b and
2014c). Additional consultation with VDCR will continue to assess impacts on this site.
Handsom-Gum Powerline
Handsom-Gum Powerline is a Commonwealth-listed conservation site around a
saturated, herb-dominated powerline right-of-way, and is categorized as having high ecological
importance (C3). The site provides habitat to several Commonwealth rare plants requiring a bog
environment. The proposed AP-3 lateral route crosses 0.8 mile (4,089 feet) of the site between
MPs 28.2 and 29.0 in Southampton County. This site is important to the VDCR due to the
amount of sensitive plants in the area as well as a known occurrence of eastern big-eared bat
roost habitats (VDCR, 2015a). The agency suggested placing the proposed lateral adjacent to the
existing powerline right-of-way in this area, which the proposed route follows (VDCR, 2015a).
The VDCR commented about protection of water quality and hydrology of the wetlands for the
protection of the rare plants (VDCR, 2015b). Additional consultation with VDCR will continue
to assess impacts on this site.
Great Dismal Swamp: Northwest Section
This conservation site is a section of swamp located outside the Great Dismal Swamp
National Wildlife Refuge on the north side of U.S. Highway 13 in the City of Chesapeake. The
site contains remnants of forested swamp and associated uplands. One common plant species in
this area is the lax hornpod (Mitreola petiolata), which is a facultative wetland plant in the
Eastern Mountains, Piedmont, and Atlantic Coastal Plains regions (USDA NRCS, 2014b). The
proposed AP-3 lateral route crosses 2.9 miles (15,470 feet) of the site between MPs 63.9 to 66.9
and does not cross known populations of protected plants (VDCR, 2014b and 2014c. Additional
consultation with VDCR will continue to assess impacts on this site.
Lummis Flatwoods
Lummis Flatwoods is a Commonwealth-listed conservation site that contains populations
of an uncommon plant, Raven’s seedbox (Ludwigia ravenii). This plant is found along a moist
to wet power line right-of-way within the conservation site. Raven’s seedbox is an obligate
wetland plant species in the Mid-Atlantic Coastal Plain region (Auch, 2014). The site also
contains several plants and an amphibian that are rare to the Commonwealth of Virginia. The
proposed AP-3 lateral route crosses 1.2 miles (6,569 feet) of the site between MPs 50.6 and 51.9
in Suffolk County; however, the route does not cross any known occurrences of rare plant
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species in the area (VDCR, 2014b and 2014c). Additional consultation with VDCR will
continue to assess impacts on this site.
Great Dismal Swamp National Wildlife Refuge
This conservation site encompasses the Great Dismal Swamp National Wildlife Refuge
and adjacent areas, including areas considered to be of outstanding ecological importance (C1).
In total, the site encompasses approximately 112,000 acres of forests, including pine, black gum,
tupelo-bald cypress, Atlantic white-cedar, maple, and sweetgum-oak poplar. Some sensitive
plant species that occur in this area are big gallberry (Illex coriacea), lax hornpod, Raven’s
seedbox, Elliott’s goldenrod (Solidago latissimifolia), and red turtlehead (Chelone obliqua)
(VDCR, 2014b and 2014c). Big gallberry is a facultative species for wetlands in the Eastern
Mountains, Piedmont, and Atlantic Coastal Plain regions (USDA NRCS, 2014c). Elliot’s
goldenrod and Red turtlehead are both obligate species for wetlands in the same regions (USDA
NRCS, 2014d). The conservation site also contains marshes with a variety of vines and
hardwoods, including cattails (FWS, 2014a). The proposed AP-3 mainline route crosses
7.8 miles (41,093 feet) of the conservation site between MP 59.5 to 72.4 in the Cities of Suffolk
and Chesapeake. Additional consultation with VDCR will continue to assess impacts on this
site.
North Carolina
Atlantic consulted the NCNHP to identify unique plant communities along and in the
vicinity of the proposed AP-2 mainline route in North Carolina (see Appendix 1H of Resource
Report 1 for copies of agency correspondence). The NCNHP provided Atlantic with a table
listing all sensitive areas within a 300-foot-wide corridor centered on the proposed centerline.
Based on review of this data, Atlantic determined that four sensitive vegetation communities are
crossed by the proposed pipeline route: Cypress-Gum Swamp, Brownwater Levee Forest, Mesic
Mixed Hardwood Forest, and Mesic Pine Savanna. A brief description of these communities is
provided below. Site-specific impacts are discussed in Section 3.2.4.
Cypress-Gum Swamp
The Cypress-Gum Swamp is located in a region where forests have evolved to live in
flooded land. The trunks of the trees are swollen to support themselves in a wet soil (Frankberg,
2014). Common tree species in the Cypress-Gum Swamp include Carolina ash and red maples.
Cypressknee sedge is also present. The proposed AP-2 mainline route crosses 0.2 mile
(1,892 feet) of the Cypress-Gum Swamp between MPs 392.8 and 393.0 in Johnston County.
Brownwater Levee Forest
The Brownwater Levee Forest is located in areas of the coastal plain with high nutrient
levels in the water and soil. The forest develops along brownwater rivers, which are typically
neutral in pH (NCWRC, 2014c). Common tree species are sycamore, river birch, laurel oak, and
willow. The forest is threatened by land use changes, including the building of dams (NCWRC,
2014c). The proposed AP-2 mainline route crosses areas within the Tar-Pamlico River
Watershed in Cumberland County, which contains a portion of the Brownwater Levee Forest.
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The crossing, which measures approximately 0.5 mile (2,595 feet) in length, occurs between
MPs 421.6 and 422.1.
Mesic Mixed Hardwood Forest
Mesic mixed hardwood forests are found in the Coastal Plain and Piedmont ecoregions.
Typically, these forests are found on slopes, uplands, and ravines where evenly distributed
moisture can be found throughout the year (VDCR, 2014a). Some of the common vegetation
found in these forests includes oak, hickory, dogwood, American holly, Christmas fern,
partridgeberry, and American strawberry bush (VDCR, 2014a). The forests are valued for
abundant biodiversity and serving as a key component to local ecosystems (NCWRC, 2014c).
Several notable species, such as the Appalachian blazing star, Sandhills fire lily, and roughleaf
yellow loosestrife, are found in mesic mixed hardwood forests.
The proposed AP-2 mainline route crosses approximately 0.6 mile (3,297 feet) of the
Mesic Mixed Hardwood Forest between MPs 421.5 and 422.1 in Cumberland County. Review
of the natural heritage data suggests that populations of Appalachian blazing star (Liatris
squarrulosa), Sandhills fire lily (Lilium pyrophilum), and roughleaf yellow loosestrife
(Lysimachia asperulifolia) may be found within 4,000 to 5,000 feet of this crossing (VDCR
2014b and 2014c).
Mesic Pine Savanna
Mesic pine savanna communities are reliant on fire control and do not contain many
trees. Shrubs and grasses are commonly found in the savanna, although some of the area has
been converted into pine plantations for lumber production (FWS, 2014b). Running oak
(Quercus elliotti) is a rare species of oak only found in the savanna of North Carolina (Cook,
2013). The proposed AP-2 pipeline route crosses 0.3 mile (1,328 feet) of the Mesic Pine
Savanna between MPs 472.4 and 472.7 in Robeson County. Review of the natural heritage data
suggests a possibility that running oak could occur less than 1,000 feet from this crossing.
Pennsylvania
DTI used the PNDI Project Environmental Review online system to identify sensitive,
unique, or protected vegetation communities in the vicinity of the proposed SHP facilities in
Pennsylvania (see Appendix 1I of Resource Report 1 for copies of agency correspondence).
According to the PNDI, one Commonwealth-listed species of concern, puttyroot orchid
(Aplectrum hyemale), may occur near the Crayne Compressor Station study area. Puttyroot is
associated with moist woodlands, forested slopes, and stream bank habitats. DTI has sent the
PNDI result to the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (PDCNR)
to clarify if habitat is present or if surveys are required; however, DTI does not anticipate habitat
for the puttyroot orchid within the Crayne Compressor Station study area. DTI will continue to
monitor the PNDI to verify that no new sensitive resources are added to the areas proximate to
the SHP.
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State/Commonwealth Lands
West Virginia
The proposed AP-1 mainline route crosses approximately 1.3 miles of State owned and
managed land in West Virginia. Between approximate MPs 53.8 and 55.2 in Randolph, County,
the route crosses the Hunttonsville Wildlife Management Area (WMA), which is managed by the
WVDNR. The WMA encompasses approximately 2,720 acres of valley farmland hardwood
forest on adjacent mountain slopes.
The proposed TL-635 route crosses approximately 3.6 miles of WVDNR land in the
Lewis Wetzel WMA. This area encompasses approximately 13,590 acres of steep terrain
ranging in elevation from 736 to 1,560 feet above sea level. The WMA is mostly forested with
oak-hickory and cove hardwood species. The SHP TL-635 crosses the WMA between MPs 23.3
and 26.8, MPs 27.1 and 27.2 in Wetzel, County.
Virginia
The proposed AP-1 mainline route crosses approximately 0.4 mile of Commonwealth
land managed by the VDGIF in the Highland WMA in Highland County, which encompasses
approximately 14,283 acres (VDGIF, 2015b). Timber types in the WMA are primarily upland
hardwood forest consisting of oak/hickory and mixed oak stands. The WMA also includes an
80-acre area of blue grass sod on the Jack Mountain tract that was formerly used as Summer
pasture (VDGIF, 2015b). Small wildlife clearings and seeded logging roads provide additional
herbaceous cover. Management activities in the WMA are concentrated in areas accessible by
roads and habitat diversity is provided through small timber sales to create early successional
habitat or enhance hard mast production. Plantings of trees and shrubs that produce soft mast
(e.g., apple, dogwood, or cherry) enhance available natural foods for wildlife. The ACP crosses
the Highland WMA between MPs 94.4 and 94.8.
North Carolina
This section will be updated in the final Resource Report 3 based on ongoing
consultations with staff from the State of North Carolina.
Pennsylvania
No Commonwealth owned lands are crossed by the SHP in Pennsylvania.
Federal Lands
The proposed AP-1 mainline route crosses the MNF in West Virginia and the GWNF,
Blue Ridge Parkway, and Great Dismal Swamp National Wildlife Refuge in Virginia. No
Federal land is crossed by the SHP. The proposed ACP pipeline routes cross upland forested
habitats in each of the Federal lands as summarized in Table 3.2.1-5. Additional vegetation
types crossed by the ACP on Federal lands are identified below.
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TABLE 3.2.1-5
Upland Forested Habitats Crossed in Federal Land for the Atlantic Coast Pipeline (in miles)
Coniferous
Forests
Deciduous
Forests
Mixed Forests
Deciduous Savanna
and Glade
Floodplain and
Riparian
Total Upland
Forests
National Forest
Miles
%
Miles
%
Miles
%
Miles
%
Miles
%
Miles
%
Monongahela
National Forest
0.1
0.6
3.4
21.2
12.5
78.1
<0.1
0.0
0.0
0.0
16.0
100.0
George Washington
National Forest
0.0
0.0
9.6
85.7
1.6
14.3
0.0
0.0
0.0
0.0
11.2
100.0
Blue Ridge Parkway
0.0
0.0
< 0.1
100
0.0
0.0
0.0
0.0
0.0
0.0
<0.1
100.0
Great Dismal Swamp
National Wildlife
Refuge
0.0
0.0
0.3
100
0.0
0.0
0.0
0.0
0.0
0.0
0.3
100.0
____________________
Source: USGS GAP, 2011
Note: This data only represent upland habitats crossed on federally owned land but does not include tree plantations or harvested forests.
Monongahela National Forest
The MNF supports one of the most ecologically significant forests in the United States
(USDA, 2014a). The proposed AP-1 mainline route crosses approximately 17.9 miles of USFS
owned and administered land within the MNF. The ACP Project area crosses approximately
16.0 miles of upland forested habitat in the MNF as summarized in Table 3.2.1-5 above. The
vegetation habitat types crossed by the AP-1 mainline area in the MNF include developed areas
(1.5 miles), open land (0.2 mile), and other types (<0.2 mile) (USGS GAP, 2011).
Within the MNF there are three successional stages of forest (early, mature, late) that can
be further distinguished by age. Late successional forests can feature old large trees and large
standing down trees (USDA, 2011a). Forests in the MNF are mostly secondary growth; old
growth forest comprises less than one percent of the entire MNF (USDA, 2011a). Old growth
forest is not managed as a separate entity or distinct resource in the MNF, but rather it is
integrated into the larger spectrum of vegetation management (USDA, 2011a; USFS, 2015).
Where old growth does exist, it is limited to small, scattered patches within a larger matrix of
primarily 70- to 90-year-old forests (USDA, 2011a; USFS, 2015). Atlantic is consulting with
USFS staff, and will be completing botanical surveys, to determine if any old growth stands of
red spruce or other tree species are crossed by the proposed AP-1 mainline in the MNF.
The proposed AP-1 mainline route will cross a variety of forest stands in the MNF.
These forest types include mixed upland hardwoods, sugar maple (beech/yellow birch), red
spruce (balsam fir), red maple, birch, black cherry (white ash/yellow poplar), chestnut oak,
mixed oaks, hemlock, northern red oak, and beech (USDA, 2005). The remaining lands that will
be crossed in the MNF consist of open lands/grass (USDA, 2005).
According to the MNF LRMP (USDA, 2011a), sustainable timber production will be
maintained throughout the MNF, primarily in areas with sugar maple and yellow birch trees.
Timber production is expected to include 20,000 to 40,000 acres over the next 10 years. Red
spruce, hemlock, white pine, dogwood, serviceberry, and shrub species that produce mast for
wildlife are not harvested in the forest (USDA, 2011a).
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Red Spruce Stands
The USFS provided Atlantic with GIS data mapping the amount and composition of red
spruce stands in the MNF (USDA, 2013). As shown in the Table 3.2.1-6, the majority of the
route on the MNF (approximately 11.5 miles) does not cross red spruce forest. Approximately
5.3 miles crosses areas with trace red spruce cover (less than 10 percent red spruce) and
approximately 1.1 mile crosses areas with medium red spruce cover (10 to 50 percent red
spruce). The route across the MNF avoids areas with high red spruce cover (greater than
50 percent cover) (USDA, 2013; USDA, 2015).
TABLE 3.2.1-6
Crossings of Red Spruce Forest in the Monongahela National Forest
Red Spruce Cover Density
Feet Crossed
Miles Crossed
Medium Cover a
5,843.7
1.1
Trace Cover b
28,072.5
5.3
60,501.2
11.5
94,417.4
17.9
Other Vegetation
c
Total
____________________
Note: Classification as identified in data provided by the MNF:
a
Medium Cover based on 10-50 percent red spruce cover.
b
Trace Cover based on <10 percent red spruce cover.
c
Other Vegetation may potentially be close to red spruce range, and encompasses all other tree species
Source: USDA, 2013
Lambert Restoration Project
Populations of red spruce in the MNF occur at high elevations, including areas that are
being restored. The USFS has been implementing the Lambert Restoration Project to improve
watershed conditions and wildlife habitat, and restore native red spruce-northern hardwood
ecosystems on the Lambert Run Strip coalmine and approximately 1,000 acres of additional
abandoned coal mine lands in Randolph, County, West Virginia. A portion of the proposed AP1 mainline route across the MNF follows the abandoned Lambert Run Strip coalmine across
Cheat and Back Allegheny Mountains. This area is currently dominated by non-native grasses
and trees due to past rehabilitation efforts to reclaim impacted areas (USDA, 2011). The USFS
has recently taken efforts to decompact soils, control non-native plant species, and plant native
species associated with spruce-hardwood ecosystems (USFS, 2015). The USFS (2015) reported
that the planted tree saplings have been browsed by deer, and the area remains largely clear of
vegetation.
The proposed AP-1 mainline route crosses approximately 4.0 miles of the Lambert
Spruce Restoration Area. USFS (2015) commented about the potential for a pipeline right-ofway within the red spruce-northern hardwood restoration area if it is maintained in an herbaceous
state. Atlantic will coordinate with the MNF regarding planned restoration activities in this area.
George Washington National Forest
The GWNF is known for its high biodiversity including 2,000 species of shrubs and
plants and 40 species of trees. It mostly consists of pine-hardwood and Appalachian hardwood
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forests. One of the goals of the GWNF LRMP is to actively restore spruce, yellow pine, beaver
meadows, riverfront hardwoods, chestnut, and hemlock (USDA, 2011b).
The proposed AP-1 mainline route crosses approximately 11.8 miles of USFS owned and
administered land. The ACP Project area crosses approximately 11.2 miles of upland forested
habitat in the GWNF as summarized in Table 3.2.1-5 above. Additional vegetation habitat types
crossed by the ACP Project area in the GWNF include developed areas (0.4 mile) and tree
plantation/harvested forest (0.2 mile) (USGS GAP, 2011).
Appalachian Trail
The proposed AP-1 mainline route crosses the Appalachian Trail approximately at
MP 153.7 on USFS lands in the GWNF. Vegetation types around this feature consist of
deciduous forest and woodland (USGS GAP, 2011). As discussed in Resource Reports 1 and 8,
Atlantic is evaluating use of the HDD construction method to install the proposed pipeline under
both the Appalachian Trail and Blue Ridge Parkway at the same time (see Section 1.5.2.1 of
Resource Report 1 for a description of the HDD method). The HDD method would avoid direct
impacts on the Appalachian Trail including impacts on vegetation immediately adjacent to this
feature.
Blue Ridge Parkway
The proposed AP-1 mainline route crosses the Blue Ridge Parkway approximately at
MP 153.8 on National Park Service lands. Vegetation types around this feature consist of
deciduous forest and woodland (USGS GAP, 2011). As discussed in Resource Reports 1 and 8,
Atlantic is evaluating use of the HDD construction method to install the proposed pipeline under
both the Appalachian Trail and Blue Ridge Parkway at the same time (see Section 1.5.2.1 of
Resource Report 1 for a description of the HDD method). The HDD method would avoid direct
impacts on the Blue Ridge Parkway, including impacts on vegetation immediately adjacent to
this feature.
Great Dismal Swamp National Wildlife Refuge
The Great Dismal Swamp National Wildlife Refuge encompasses approximately
112,000 acres of forested wetland, lake, and adjacent upland areas in southeastern Virginia and
northeastern North Carolina. It is a small remnant of a much larger swamp estimated to have
measured greater than 1 million acres in size, much of which was destroyed by human activities,
including artificial drainage. Dominant tree species in the refuge include pine, black gum,
tupelo-bald cypress, Atlantic white cedar, maple, and sweetgum-oak poplar (see the discussion
above on the Great Dismal Swamp National Wildlife Refuge conservation site). The proposed
AP-3 lateral route crosses approximately 1.7 miles of the refuge in the Cities of Suffolk and
Chesapeake, mostly adjacent to existing utility rights-of-way. The proposed ACP pipeline
facilities cross deciduous forests and woodlands (0.3 mile), open land (0.2 mile), approximately
0.1 mile of agricultural and developed land, with the remaining areas categorized as forested
wetland and waterbodies (USGS GAP, 2011).
This section will be updated in the final Resource Report 3 based on ongoing
consultations with Great Dismal Swamp National Wildlife Refuge staff.
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3.2.2 Invasive Plant Species
A noxious weed is any plant officially designated by a Federal, State/Commonwealth, or
County government as injurious to public health, agriculture, recreation, wildlife, or property
(Sheley et al., 1999). Noxious weeds are opportunistic plant species that readily flourish in
disturbed areas, preventing native plant species from establishing successful communities. The
more general term “invasive species" is used for species that are non-native to the ecosystem
under consideration and whose introduction causes or is likely to cause economic or
environmental harm or harm to human health. Invasive plants include not only noxious weeds
but other plants that are not native to an area.
Atlantic and DTI are consulting with the appropriate agencies with regards to invasive
species in the ACP Project area and SHP Project area. Additionally, Atlantic’s and DTI’s field
biologists are recording locations of invasive plant species along the proposed pipeline routes as
part of the ongoing environmental surveys for the Projects.
Under Executive Order 13112, a Federal agency shall not authorize, fund, or carry out
actions likely to cause or promote the introduction or spread of invasive species in the United
States unless it is determined that the benefits of such actions outweigh the potential harm and
that all feasible and prudent measures to minimize risks are implemented. Due to the widespread
population of many invasive species in the ACP Project area and SHP Project area, Atlantic and
DTI will implement measures to prevent the spread of invasive species using best management
practices for pipeline projects. These measures will be described in an Invasive Plant Species
Management Plan, which will be provided in Appendix 1F of the final Resource Report 1.6
West Virginia
The West Virginia Noxious Weed Act prohibits persons, including corporations, from
moving, transporting, delivering, shipping, or offering for shipment noxious weeds into or within
the State without a permit from the Secretary of Agriculture. A list of noxious weed species is
published by the West Virginia Department of Agriculture. This list will be included in the
Invasive Plant Species Management Plan, which will be provided in Appendix 1F of the final
Resource Report 1.
The most common invasive plant species in West Virginia are marijuana, plumeless
thistle, curled thistle, musk thistle, autumn olive, opium poppy, kudzu, multiflora rose, and
johnsongrass (USDA, 2014b). Many of these species are common and widespread in disturbed
areas, forest edges, and dominant understory.
To date, Atlantic and DTI have identified autumn olive, multiflora rose, johnsongrass,
musket thistle, Japanese stiltgrass, Japanese knotweed, morrow’s honeysuckle, and tree of
heaven within the ACP Project area and SHP Project area in West Virginia. Locations of
invasive plant species along the proposed pipeline routes in West Virginia will be included in the
6
In comments filed with the FERC, an individual suggested that the USFS document titled A Management Guide for Invasive Plants in
Southern Forests (Miller et al., 2010) be used in lieu of the FERC Plan. Atlantic and DTI are currently reviewing the USFS document and
will incorporate applicable measures into the Invasive Plant Species Management Plan.
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Invasive Plant Species Management Plan, which will be provided in Appendix 1F of the final
Resource Report 1.
Virginia
Common invasive plant species in Virginia include purple loosestrife and European wand
loosestrife, which are the only two invasive species listed in the Commonwealth (USDA, 2014b;
VDCR 2014d). In correspondence with Atlantic, the Virginia Department of Agriculture and
Consumer Services (VDACS, 2014) suggested that Atlantic survey for these species as well as
the following additional species: beach vitex, giant salvinia, giant hogweed, tropical soda apple,
wavy-leaf basketgrass, water spinach, and cogongrass/Japanese blood grass. Other common
invasive species, like johnsongrass, multiflora rose, musk thistle, and curled thistle, are
widespread throughout Virginia.
To date, Atlantic has recorded one instance of basketgrass along the proposed AP-1
mainline route at MP 241.4 in Nottoway County. Other identified invasive plant species include
johnsongrass in Nottoway County (MP 240.6), and Japanese stiltgrass in Cumberland County
(MP 213.5). Locations of invasive plant species along the proposed pipeline routes will be
included in the Invasive Plant Species Management Plan, which will be provided in Appendix
1F of the final Resource Report 1.
North Carolina
Common invasive plant species in North Carolina include Japanese stiltgrass, swamp
stonecrop, water snowflake, plumeless thistle, yellow fieldcress, and Canadian thistle (North
Carolina Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services [NCDACS], 2014a). The North
Carolina Plant Pest Law empowers the North Carolina Board of Agriculture to implement
regulations for preventing the spread of plant pests, including invasive plant species. The
NCDACS provided Atlantic with a list of North Carolina invasive plant species to use during
surveying (NCDACS, 2014b). Additionally, the NCDENR commented on the spread of invasive
plant species.
To date, Japanese stiltgrass has been recorded along the proposed AP-2 mainline route at
MP 296.9 in Northampton County and MP 359.9 in Wilson County. Locations of invasive plant
species along the proposed pipeline route will be included in the Invasive Plant Species
Management Plan, which will be provided in Appendix 1F of the final Resource Report 1.
Pennsylvania
The Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture administers Commonwealth programs for
invasive species and maintains a list of invasive plant species. Common invasive plant species
on the list are bull thistle, Canadian thistle, giant hogweed, Goatsrue, jimsonweed, johnsongrass,
kudzu, marijuana, mile-a-minute, multiflora rosa, musk thistle, purple loosestrife, and shatter
cane (PADA, 2000). None of these species were identified during survey of the proposed SHP
in Pennsylvania.
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Federal Land
Monongahela National Forest
One of the goals identified in the 2006 version of the MNF’s LRMP was to create a nonnative invasive species list for the forest. The list was completed in 2010 with recommendations
for mitigating impacts associated with invasive species, including:





cleaning of logging equipment;
follow-up monitoring and treatment of project sites;
use of weed free seeds;
special use permits; and
borrow pit inspections.
The list of non-native invasive species identified for the MNF and their occurrence along
the ACP will be included in the Invasive Plant Species Management Plan, which will be
provided in Appendix 1F of the final Resource Report 1.
During a meeting, the USFS (2015) commented about the spread of non-native species
particularly in red spruce dominated areas of the MNF. There were specific comments on
spotted knapweed, which has the ability to quickly invade disturbed areas and change soil
properties potentially inhibiting the growth of native species (USFS, 2015). In addition, there
were comments about the creation of a new right-of-way, which could increase the spread of
invasive plant species due to the potential for increased recreational activity (i.e., illegal allterrain vehicle use, hunting, hiking), which can promote infestations of invasive plant species
(USFS, 2015). Atlantic will continue to coordinate with the MNF regarding populations of
invasive plant species and control options within the ACP Project area.
George Washington National Forest
This section will be updated in the final Resource Report 3 based on ongoing
consultations with GWNF staff.
Appalachian Trail
This section will be updated in the final Resource Report 3 based on ongoing
consultations with GWNF staff.
Blue Ridge Parkway
This section will be updated in the final Resource Report 3 based on ongoing
consultations with BRP staff.
Great Dismal Swamp National Wildlife Refuge
This section will be updated in the final Resource Report 3 based on ongoing
consultations with Great Dismal Swamp National Wildlife Refuge staff.
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3.2.3 Construction and Operation Impacts and Mitigation
3.2.3.1 Pipeline Facilities
Construction of the Projects will cause direct and indirect temporary and permanent
impacts on vegetation. Direct temporary impacts will result from tree removal, clearing, and
grading in construction areas prior to installation of the pipelines. Direct permanent impacts will
result from the conversion of forested to herbaceous cover types in the maintained easements for
the pipeline facilities. Indirect impacts on vegetation could result from an increase in soil
erosion (see Resource Report 7), the introduction and establishment of invasive or noxious
species (see Section 3.2.2), and a local reduction in available wildlife habitat (see Section 3.3.2).
To minimize impacts on vegetation, Atlantic and DTI will implement the construction
and restoration measures identified in the Plan and Procedures. Atlantic and DTI additionally
will prepare and implement an SPCC Plan, HDD Plan, and other construction, restoration, and
mitigation plans as discussed in Section 1.5 of Resource Report 1. These plans will be provided
in Appendix 1F of the final Resource Report 1.
The types and amounts (in acres) of upland vegetation that will be affected by the
Projects are summarized in Table 3.2.3-1. Table 2.3.4-1 in Resource Report 2 identifies impacts
on wetlands. Table 8.3.1-1 in Resource Report 8 identifies impacts on agricultural lands
(including planted pine plantations) as well as land cover classes that do not support significant
vegetation (e.g., developed land and open water).
Clearing of upland vegetation will be necessary along the proposed pipeline routes where
coniferous, mixed, and deciduous forests, planted pine plantations, and shrub type lands are
crossed. In upland areas outside of the permanent pipeline rights-of-way, vegetation
communities will be restored to preconstruction conditions and cover types. Atlantic was
approached by the NRCS in North Carolina regarding the potential to restore the right-of-way
with plant species that attract pollinators such as bees and butterflies. Atlantic and DTI are
currently investigating potential seed mixes and restoration and maintenance practices that could
provide suitable habitat for pollinator species in the maintained permanent easements for the
pipelines. Additional information on this issue will be provided in the final Resource Report 3.
During operations, regular vegetation maintenance in the permanent rights-of-way will be
necessary to provide access for pipeline inspections and regular and emergency repairs as well as
visibility for aerial patrols. The permanent pipeline rights-of-way will be mowed periodically
(no more frequently than once every three years) and maintained in herbaceous vegetation,
resulting in the conversion of upland forest, planted pine, and shrub lands to herbaceous or shrub
vegetation types. The NCDENR, VDGIF, and USFS have commented about forest
fragmentation due to the conversion of forested landscapes to herbaceous cover types in the
maintained easements, including fragmentation of the MNF and GWNF.
3-57
Resource Report 3
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
TABLE 3.2.3-1
Upland Habitats Crossed by the Atlantic Coast Pipeline (acres)a
Coniferous Forests
PROJECT/Facility Type/Facility
Deciduous Forests
State
Cons.
Oper.
Cons.
WV
2.9
1.6
71.4
VA
0.0
0.0
684.7
NC
276.4
126.0
260.6
VA
0.0
0.0
NC
0.0
0.0
AP-4
VA
0.0
AP-5
VA
Oper.
Mixed Forests
Deciduous Savanna
and Glade
Floodplain and
Riparian
Total Upland Forests
Cons.
Oper.
Cons.
Oper.
Cons.
Oper.
Cons.
Oper.
42.9
816.4
488.1
3.3
1.8
30.6
18.4
924.6
552.7
411.0
1,013.7
605.5
0.0
0.0
30.8
19.3
1,729.3
1,035.8
117.1
13.3
6.2
35.7
16.3
51.5
24.2
637.5
289.7
21.8
14.1
50.1
32.3
0.0
0.0
47.0
30.7
118.9
77.2
4.6
2.9
9.5
6.1
0.0
0.0
4.0
2.7
18.1
11.7
0.0
0.2
0.2
7.5
4.9
0.0
0.0
<0.1
<0.1
7.8
5.1
0.0
0.0
0.5
0.3
1.5
1.0
0.0
0.0
0.1
<0.1
2.1
1.3
279.3
127.6
1,043.8
588.5
1,912.0
1,144.1
39.0
18.1
164.0
95.3
3,438.1
1,973.5
AP-1
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
AP-2
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
AP-3
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
ATLANTIC COAST PIPELINE
Mainline Pipelines
AP-1
AP-2
Lateral Pipelines
AP-3
Pipelines Facilities Total
3-58
Aboveground Facilities
ACP FACILITIES
TOTAL
SUPPLY HEADER PROJECT
Pipeline Facilities
TL-636
PA
0.0
0.0
4.2
2.1
7.1
3.6
0.8
0.4
10.6
5.1
22.6
11.2
TL-635
WV
0.0
0.0
44.9
20.7
345.8
160.6
0.0
0.0
8.6.0
3.9
399.2
185.2
0.0
0.0
49.1
22.8
352.9
164.2
0.8
0.4
19.0
9.0
421.8
196.5
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
TBD
Pipelines Facilities Total
Aboveground Facilities
Aboveground Facilities
Total
____________________
a
The numbers in this table have been rounded for presentation purposes. As a result, the totals may not reflect the exact sum of the addends in all cases.
Source: USGS GAP, 2011
Resource Report 3
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
As discussed in detail in Resource Report 10, a number of route alternatives, route
variations, and route adjustments have been identified and incorporated into the Projects to
reduce impacts on sensitive habitats. Additionally, Atlantic and DTI are working with Federal
and State/Commonwealth agencies to reduce impacts on sensitive habitats. Additional
discussion related to forest fragmentation and potential impacts on wildlife can be found in
Section 3.3.2. The width and configuration of the temporary and permanent rights-of-way for
the ACP and SHP, as well as typicals for each configuration, are provided in Resource Report 1.
In wetlands, clearing for construction along each of the proposed pipelines will be limited
to a 75-foot-wide right-of-way, which will minimize impacts on wetland vegetation.
Additionally, ATWS required for wetland crossings will be sited at least 50 feet from the
wetland’s edge (with the exception of site-specific modifications as requested by Atlantic and
DTI and approved by the FERC). This will minimize impacts on vegetation in buffer areas
adjacent to wetlands. During operations, the Procedures allow for a 10-foot-wide corridor
centered over the pipeline to be permanently maintained in an herbaceous state in wetlands.
Additionally, the Procedures allow trees greater than 15 feet in height within 15 feet of the
pipeline to be cut and removed from wetlands along the right-of-way.
Clearing adjacent to waterbodies will involve the temporary removal of trees and brush
from the construction right-of-way. As at wetlands crossings, ATWS will be located at least
50 feet away from the water’s edge at each waterbody (with the exception of site-specific
modifications as requested by Atlantic and DTI and approved by the FERC). This will minimize
impacts on riparian vegetation at waterbody crossings. Following installation of the pipeline,
stream banks will be restored as near as practicable to pre-existing conditions and stabilized with
appropriate erosion and sediment control measures. Atlantic and DTI will restore vegetation in
riparian areas with native plant species.
As required by the Procedures, Atlantic and DTI will reseed disturbed non-agricultural
upland and riparian areas using seed mixes recommended by the NRCS, landowner, land
managing agency, or other appropriate agencies (copies of agency correspondence for the ACP
and SHP are provided in Appendices 1H and 1I of Resource Report 1, respectively). In areas
where final grading and cleanup is completed during active construction, Atlantic and DTI will
comply with the timelines for seeding identified in the Plan (weather and soil conditions
permitting) or as recommended by the NRCS, landowner, land managing agency, or other
appropriate agency. In areas where final grade and cleanup is delayed due to weather or frozen
soil conditions, Atlantic and DTI will seed in the following Spring or Summer. Atlantic and DTI
will use suitable seed mixes that will be sown to provide protection against soil erosion. Timely
restoration of the construction rights-of-way, reseeding with the appropriate seed mixes, and the
use of effective erosion control measures will minimize the duration of vegetation disturbance.
In wetland areas, vegetation is expected to naturally regenerate following installation of
the pipeline and final grade and cleanup. Other construction measures, such as segregating
topsoil over the trenchline in unsaturated wetlands, will help facilitate revegetation in wetlands
by preserving natural seed stock within disturbed soils. Where necessary, however, wetlands
will be planted with native vegetation and/or seeded with predetermined seed mixes (approved
by the appropriate agencies) to promote the reestablishment of wetland vegetation.
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Resource Report 3
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
In agricultural areas, cropland will be restored to active agricultural production, and other
areas, such as pastures, will be revegetated using seed mixes appropriate to existing land uses
and cover types (such as grass or hay types). Best management practices during construction,
such as topsoil segregation, will minimize impacts on soil fertility and facilitate restoration in
these areas.
3.2.3.2 Aboveground Facilities
As with the pipeline facilities, construction and operation of the proposed aboveground
facilities will result in direct and indirect temporary and permanent impacts on vegetation. The
proposed modifications at the Burch Ridge Compressor Station associated with the SHP are not
expected to impact vegetation; the modifications at this site will occur within the existing
facility.
Temporary impacts, and mitigation for those impacts, will be similar to those described
above for the pipeline facilities. These will include implementation of erosion and sediment
controls and other measure as specified by the Plan and Procedures and the other construction,
restoration, and mitigation plans developed for the Projects (to be provided in Appendix 1F of
the final Resource Report 1). Permanent impacts will result from the conversion of forested land
and other vegetation types to developed land or open land within the permanent maintained area
at each site. Disturbed areas at each site that are not covered with foundations, paving, or gravel
will be finish-graded and seeded.
3.2.3.3 Access Roads and Other Work Areas
For both Projects, Atlantic and DTI are in the process of identifying roads that will be
used to provide access to the proposed pipeline rights-of-way and other facilities during
construction and operation of the Projects. In addition, Atlantic and DTI are in the process of
identifying temporary pipe storage and contractor yards that will be needed to store equipment
and stage construction activities. Additional information about the impacts on vegetation along
the access roads and at the pipe storage and contractor yards will be provided in the final
Resource Report 3.
3.2.3.4 Invasive Plant Species
As noted above, Atlantic and DTI will prepare and implement an Invasive Plant Species
Management Plan (to be provided in Appendix 1F of the final Resource Report 1). The plan will
identify the locations of areas supporting invasive plant species populations and describe
procedures to be implemented during construction and operation of the proposed facilities to
minimize the spread of invasive plant species, including:

methods to prevent the introduction and spread of invasive plant species from
construction equipment moving along the right-of-way;

methods to contain invasive plant seeds and propagules by preventing segregated
topsoil from being spread to adjacent areas or along the construction rights-ofway; and
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Resource Report 3

Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
methods to address infestations of invasive plant species that develop during
operation of the Projects.
3.2.4 Site-Specific Impacts and Mitigation
Atlantic and DTI will continue to consult with the applicable State/Commonwealth and
Federal agencies regarding impacts on unique, sensitive, or protected vegetation communities as
described in Section 3.2.1.2 as well as any specific minimization or mitigation measures for
these areas.
3.2.4.1 State/Commonwealth Natural Heritage Communities
Table 3.2.4-1 identifies the area of temporary and operational impacts at sensitive
vegetation sites along the proposed ACP and SHP. Consultations with State/Commonwealth
resource agencies to assess impacts on these sites are ongoing.
The ACP will temporarily impact 3.1 acres of the Shenandoah Mountain Trail
Conservation Site associated with Shenandoah Mountain,7 see Table 3.2.4-1 below. The Signal
Corps Knob Conservation Site is located just under one mile northeast of the crossing of the
Shenandoah Mountain Trail; however, the ACP Project area does not cross Signal Corps Knob.
Signal Corps Knob does not have a VDCR designated conservation site associated with it
(VDCR, 2014b and 2014c). Field surveys for rare species will be conducted along the
Shenandoah Mountain Trail Conservation Site or in nearby locations where rare species habitats
could occur within the ACP survey corridor. Additional consultation with VDCR will continue
to assess impacts on the Shenandoah Mountain Trail and other sensitive areas. The ACP does
not cross the Laurel Fork Conservation Site designated by the VDCR (VDCR, 2014b and
2014c).
3.2.4.2 State/Commonwealth Land
West Virginia
This section will be updated in the final Resource Report 3 based on additional agency
consultations and field surveys.
Virginia
This section will be updated in the final Resource Report 3 based on additional agency
consultations and field surveys.
7
In a comment filed with the FERC, an individuals noted concerns regarding potential impacts on pristine and intact forest landscapes around
the following locations in Virginia: Signal Corps Knob, Shenandoah Mountain, and Laurel Fork.
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Resource Report 3
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
TABLE 3.2.4-1
Unique, Sensitive, and Protected Vegetation Communities Affected by the Atlantic Coast Pipeline and Supply Header Project (acres)
Project/Facility Type/Facility
Milepost
In
Milepost
Out
Construction
Impacts
Not applicable
Not
applicable
Not
applicable
Not
applicable
Not
applicable
State
Site Name
WV
Operation
Impacts.
ATLANTIC COAST PIPELINE
Mainline Pipelines
AP-1
VA
AP-2
NC
Back Creek Habitat Zone
83.7
84.1
6.0
3.7
Lantz Mountain Habitat Zone
85.2
85.4
2.1
1.3
Sounding Knob
91.1
92.0
14.6
8.7
Crab Run SCU
92.8
92.8
0.0
0.0
Shenandoah Mountain Trail
105.4
105.6
3.1
1.8
Cochrans
135.2
135.4
2.8
1.7
Lyndhurst
144.4
147.3
42.5
23.8
Miry Run
255.8
256.4
8.9
5.5
Emporia Power Line Bog
285.4
285.8
5.5
3.3
Upper Fontaine Creek Habitat
Zone
290.3
292.6
27.9
20.7
Nottoway River - Fort Pickett
SCU
255.0
255.7
0.1
0.1
Nottoway Basin
254.7
255.2
6.2
4.0
Cypress-Gum Swamp
392.8
393.0
1.6
1.0
Mesic Mixed Hardwood Forest
421.5
422.1
9.7
3.8
Brownwater Levee Forest
421.6
422.1
7.6
3.0
Mesic Pine Savannah
472.4
472.7
3.3
1.5
1.3
Lateral Pipelines
AP-3
VA
Lower Fontaine Creek
12.4
12.6
1.9
Handsom-Gum Powerline
28.2
29.0
7.0
4.7
Great Dismal Swamp:
Northwest Section
63.9
66.9
26.6
17.7
Lummis Flatwoods
50.6
51.9
11.3
7.5
Great Dismal Swamp
59.4
72.5
71.9
47.0
AP-4
VA
Not applicable
Not
applicable
Not
applicable
Not
applicable
Not
applicable
AP-5
VA
Not applicable
Not
applicable
Not
applicable
Not
applicable
Not
applicable
260.8
162.2
TBD
TBD
Not
applicable
Not
applicable
TBD
TBD
Pipeline Facilities Total
SUPPLY HEADER PIPELINE
TL-636
PA
TL-635
WV
Not applicable
Pipeline Facilities Total
____________________
Source: NCNHP, 2014; VDCR, 2014b and 2014c
3-62
Not
applicable
Not
applicable
Resource Report 3
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
North Carolina
This section will be updated in the final Resource Report 3 based on additional agency
consultations and field surveys.
Pennsylvania
No Commonwealth owned lands are crossed by the SHP in Pennsylvania.
3.2.4.3 Federal Land
Table 3.2.4-2 identifies impacts on upland vegetation types in the MNF, GWNF,
Appalachian Trail, Blue Ridge Parkway, and the Great Dismal Swamp National Wildlife Refuge.
Consultations with USFS, NPS, and FWS staff to assess impacts on these sites are ongoing.
TABLE 3.2.4-2
Upland Habitats Crossed in the National Forests by the Atlantic Coast Pipeline (in acres)
Coniferous
Forests
Deciduous
Forests
Mixed Forests
Deciduous
Savanna and
Glade
Floodplain and
Riparian
Total Upland
Forests
National Forest
Const.
Oper.
Cons.
Oper.
Const.
Oper.
Const.
Oper.
Const.
Oper.
Const.
Oper.
Monongahela National
Forest
2.6
1.4
51.8
31.2
186.8
112.0
0.4
0.3
0.0
0.0
241.7
144.9
George Washington
National Forest/
Appalachian Trail
0.0
0.0
146.4
87.9
23.3
14.1
0.0
0.0
0.0
0.0
169.7
101.9
Blue Ridge Parkway
0.0
0.0
0.3
0.2
0.0
0.0
0.0
0.0
0.0
0.0
0.3
0.2
Great Dismal Swamp
National Wildlife
Refuge
0.0
0.0
2.9
1.9
0.0
0.0
0.0
0.0
0.0
0.0
2.9
1.9
2.6
1.4
201.4
121.2
210.1
126.1
0.4
0.3
0.0
0.0
414.6
248.9
Total
_____________________
Source: USGS GAP, 2011
Note: This data only represents upland habitats crossed on federally owned land but does not include tree plantations or harvested forests.
Monongahela National Forest
This section will be updated in the final Resource Report 3 based on additional agency
consultations and field surveys.
George Washington National Forest
This section will be updated in the final Resource Report 3 based on additional agency
consultations and field surveys.
Appalachian Trail
As noted above, Atlantic is evaluating use of the HDD construction method to install the
proposed AP-1 mainline under and across the Appalachian Trail. The HDD method would avoid
direct impacts on the trail including impacts on vegetation immediately adjacent to the trail.
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Resource Report 3
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
Blue Ridge Parkway
As noted above, Atlantic is evaluating use of the HDD construction method to install the
proposed AP-1 mainline under and across the Blue Ridge Parkway. The HDD method would
avoid direct impacts on the parkway, including impacts on vegetation immediately adjacent to
the parkway.
Great Dismal Swamp National Wildlife Refuge
This section will be updated in the final Resource Report 3 based on additional agency
consultations and field surveys.
3.3
WILDLIFE
Existing wildlife resources in the ACP Project area and SHP Project area include those
potentially occurring along the proposed pipeline corridors, access roads, ATWS, and
aboveground facility sites. Habitats within the ACP Project area and SHP Project area include
forested land, agricultural land, developed land, open land, wetlands, and open water. The varied
nature of the terrain and associated habitats allows for diverse varieties of terrestrial wildlife
species. General descriptions of each wildlife guild are discussed below. Descriptions of
protected wildlife species are discussed in Sections 3.4 through 3.7 below.
3.3.1 Description of Wildlife
The Projects cross a variety of habitats in West Virginia, Virginia, North Carolina, and
Pennsylvania, including mountains, piedmont, and coastal plain. Section 3.2 above describes the
vegetation types that typify the major natural habitats in these areas. As discussed in
Section 3.2.1, the proposed facilities cross portions of the WAP, CA, RV, NP, Piedmont, BP, SP,
and MACP ecoregions. Typical wildlife species associated with these ecoregions are listed in
Table 3.3.1-1.
Birds
Count data from the USGS North American Breeding Bird Survey (BBS) was used to
determine the number of species with the potential to nest in the ACP Project area and SHP
Project area. The BBS is a large-scale, long-term monitoring program designed to track the
status and trends of North American bird populations. BBS data show that 175 and 166 species,
respectively, have the potential to breed in the ACP Project area and SHP Project area (Sauer et
al., 2012). Among these species, mourning dove, ruffed grouse, wild turkey, Canada goose,
woodcock, quail, pheasant, and a variety of waterfowl are valued for recreational hunting.
In addition to nesting and game bird species, other migratory birds could occur in the
ACP Project area and SHP Project area during the Spring and Fall. Section 3.4 below provides
further information on migratory birds and Important Bird Areas crossed by the Projects.
3-64
Resource Report 3
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
TABLE 3.3.1-1
Typical Wildlife Species by Ecoregion for the Atlantic Coast Pipeline and Supply Header Project
Ecoregion
Potentially Occurring Species
Western Allegheny Plateau
Birds: red-tailed hawk, great-horned owl, belted kingfisher, northern flicker, great crested flycatcher, whitebreasted nuthatch, eastern bluebird, gray catbird, American redstart, scarlet tanager, chipping sparrow, rubythroated hummingbird, wood duck, blue-winged warbler, willow flycatcher, whip-poor-will, Canada goose,
mallard
Mammals: white-tailed deer, red fox, woodchuck, raccoon, opossum, striped skunk, cottontail rabbit, fox
squirrel, long-tailed weasel, eastern chipmunk, short-tailed shrew, meadow jumping mouse, black bear,
bobcat, beaver, various bats
Reptiles/Amphibians: dusky salamander, American toad, spring peeper, snapping turtle, painted turtle,
northern water snake, garter snake, smooth green snake, milk snake, mudpuppy
Terrestrial Insects: tiger beetle, monarch butterfly
Central Appalachians
Birds: ruffed grouse, turkey, bobwhite, golden-winged warbler, Henslow’s sparrow, American black duck,
wood duck, American woodcock, Canada warbler, alder flycatcher, willow flycatcher, Swainson’s thrush
Mammals: black bear, white-tailed deer, red squirrel, gray squirrel, fox squirrel, deer mouse, meadow jumping
mouse, various weasels, various bats
Reptiles/Amphibians: spotted salamander, red-spotted newt, eastern garter snake, eastern milk snake, snapping
turtle, common five-lined skink, American toad, spring peeper, mountain chorus frog
Terrestrial Insects: gypsy moth a, tiger beetle, bumble bee, carpenter bee, gossamer-winged butterfly,
milkweed butterfly
Ridge and Valley
Birds: turkey, ruffed grouse, bobwhite, mourning dove, red-eyed vireo, cardinal, tufted titmouse, wood thrush,
summer tanager, blue-gray gnatcatcher, hooded warbler, Carolina wren, bald eagle, peregrine falcon
Mammals: white-tailed deer, black bear, bobcat, gray fox, raccoon, gray squirrel, fox squirrel, eastern
chipmunk, white-footed mouse, pine vole, short-tailed shrew, cotton mouse, deer mouse, weasels, various bats
Reptiles/Amphibians: box turtle, common garter snake, timber rattlesnake
Terrestrial Insects: gypsy moth a, tiger beetle, monarch butterfly
Northern Piedmont
Birds: meadowlark, field sparrow, mourning dove, ruffed grouse, woodcock, scarlet tanager, various
shorebirds, herons, various ducks, Canada goose
Mammals: cottontail rabbit, red fox, woodchuck, gray squirrel, red squirrel, gray fox, white-tailed deer,
raccoon, mink, muskrats, various bats
Reptiles/Amphibians: spotted salamander, marbled salamander, northern scarlet snake, snapping turtle,
painted turtle, eastern musk turtle, eastern box turtle, common five-lined skink, fence lizard, eastern cricket
frog, American bullfrog, spring peeper
Terrestrial Insects: bumble bee, carpenter bee, viceroy butterfly, spicebush swallowtail, Carolina satyr
butterfly, monarch butterfly
Piedmont
Birds: turkey, bobwhite, mourning dove, red-eyed vireo, cardinal, tufted titmouse, wood thrush, summer
tanager, blue-gray gnatcatcher, hooded warbler, Carolina wren, red-tailed hawk, American kestrel, northern
harrier, barn owl, great-horned owl, bobolink, eastern meadowlark, American woodcock, whip-poor-will,
wood duck, Cooper’s hawk, red-headed woodpecker, green heron, least bittern
Mammals: white-tailed deer, black bear, bobcat, gray fox, raccoon, cottontail rabbit, gray squirrel, fox squirrel,
eastern chipmunk, white-footed mouse, pine vole, short-tailed shrew, cotton mouse, various bats
Reptiles/Amphibians: spotted salamander, marbled salamander, common garter snake, timber rattlesnake,
snapping turtle, painted turtle, eastern musk turtle, eastern box turtle, common five-lined skink, fence lizard,
eastern cricket frog, American bullfrog, spring peeper
Terrestrial Insects: bumble bee, carpenter bee, viceroy butterfly, spicebush swallowtail, Carolina satyr
butterfly, monarch butterfly
Blue Ridge
Birds: Blackburnian warbler, saw-whet owl, American robin, American crow, blue jay, various woodpeckers,
great crested flycatcher, Carolina chickadee, cedar waxwing, northern cardinal, blue-headed vireo, blackthroated blue warbler, scarlet tanager, dark-eyed junco, Carolina wren, eastern bluebird, white-eyed vireo,
eastern towhee, great blue heron, hooded merganser, Canada goose, belted kingfisher, wood duck, Louisiana
water thrush
Mammals: cottontail rabbit, northern water shrew, rock vole, northern flying squirrel, various bats
Reptiles/Amphibians: spotted salamander, marbled salamander, seal salamander, northern red salamander, bog
turtle, snapping turtle, painted turtle, eastern musk turtle, eastern box turtle, common five-lined skink, fence
lizard, spring peeper
Terrestrial Insects: bumble bee, carpenter bee, viceroy butterfly, spicebush swallowtail, Carolina satyr
butterfly
3-65
Resource Report 3
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
TABLE 3.3.1-1 (cont’d)
Typical Wildlife Species by Ecoregion for the Atlantic Coast Pipeline and Supply Header Project
Ecoregion
Potentially Occurring Species
Southeastern Plains
Birds: Canada goose, canvasback, chuck-will’s-widow, whip-poor-will, northern flicker, bobwhite, eastern
wood-pewee, American kestrel, red-headed woodpecker, short-eared owl, common nighthawk, sedge wren,
orchard oriole, American woodcock, barn owl, Eastern kingbird, bald eagle, wood thrush, hairy woodpecker,
hooded warbler
Mammals: Seminole bat, fox squirrel, least shrew, meadow vole, long-tailed weasel, eastern mole, southern
bog lemming, cotton mouse, marsh rabbit
Reptiles/Amphibians: pine barrens treefrog, barking treefrog, northern slimy salamander, eastern spadefoot,
northern scarlet snake, corn snake, eastern hog-nosed snake, scarlet king snake, box turtle, spotted salamander,
southern dusky salamander, spotted turtle
Terrestrial Insects: cabbage white, black swallowtail, eastern tiger swallowtail, palamedes swallowtail, orange
sulphur, sleepy orange, pearl crescent, common buckeye, silver spotted skipper, bumble bee, carpenter bee,
viceroy butterfly, spicebush swallowtail, Carolina satyr butterfly, monarch butterfly
Mid-Atlantic Coastal Plain
Birds: turkey, ruffed grouse, bobwhite, mourning dove, red-eyed vireo, cardinal, tufted titmouse, wood thrush,
summer tanager, blue-gray gnatcatcher, hooded warbler, Carolina wren, quail, meadowlark, field sparrow,
various shorebirds, herons, ibises, cormorants, pine warbler, brown pelican, Wilson’s plover, short-eared owl,
northern oriole, Henslow’s sparrow, clapper rail, American black duck, red-headed woodpecker, gray catbird,
brown thrasher, barn owl, American kestrel, American bittern, pied-billed grebe, common moorhen
Mammals: white-tailed deer, black bear, bobcat, gray fox, raccoon, gray squirrel, fox squirrel, eastern
chipmunk, white-footed mouse, pine vole, short-tailed shrew, cotton mouse, woodchuck, beavers, mink,
muskrats, cottontail rabbit, striped skunk, swamp rabbit, various bats
Reptiles/Amphibians: box turtle, common garter snake, timber rattlesnake, eastern indigo snake
Terrestrial Insects: cabbage white, black swallowtail, eastern tiger swallowtail, spicebush swallowtail,
palamedes swallowtail, orange sulphur, sleepy orange, pearl crescent, common buckeye, silver spotted
skipper, monarch butterfly
____________________
a
Non-native species.
Sources: American Bird Conservancy, 1999a, b; American Bird Conservancy, 2003; Appalachian Mountains Bird Conservation Region
Partnership, 2005; Ducks Unlimited, 2014; NCWRC, 2014f; VDGIF, 2014d; Virginia Herpetological Society, 2014; WVDNR, 2014d; Wolter et
al, 2008.
Bat species found in the ACP Project area and SHP Project area are generally designated
as cave bats or tree bats. Cave bats hibernate in caves while tree bats hibernate in trees or manmade structures such as old buildings (NCWRC, 2014f; USFS, 2014c; VDGIF, 2014d; WVDNR
2014d).
The Pennsylvania Biological Survey, Mammal Technical Committee works with several
biological, conservation, and sportsmen organizations to identify important mammal habitats
throughout the Commonwealth as part of the Important Mammal Areas Project (IMAP). The
primary objective of IMAP is conservation of Pennsylvania’s wild mammals, both game and
non-game species. Priority sites are those that contain Federal and Commonwealth species of
special concern; however, IMAP is also interested in the identification of habitats that have high
mammalian diversity and those that offer exceptional educational value. The proposed SHP
facilities in Pennsylvania do not cross any conservation areas identified in the IMAP
(PGC, 2013).
Amphibians and Reptiles
Wetlands, riparian areas, and high elevation forestlands provide the most suitable habitat
for amphibians in the ACP Project area and SHP Project area. Habitat types that support the
largest abundance of amphibians in the ACP Project area include wetlands in the WAP, RV, and
Allegheny Mountains (USDA, 2014d). Common amphibians in the ACP Project area include
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southern leopard frog, eastern hellbender, bullfrog, and spring peeper. The BR ecoregion in the
ACP Project area in particular hosts a diverse number of salamander species in the Plethodon
and Desmognathus genera. Habitat types expected to support the largest abundance of
amphibians in the SHP Project area include wetlands in the WAP (USDA, 2014). Common
amphibians with the potential to occur in the SHP Project area are red spotted newt, bullfrog, and
spring peeper (USDA 2014d).
Turtles and snakes are the most common type of reptiles found in the ACP Project area
and SHP Project area. Common representative reptiles come from two distinct groups: those
associated with wetlands or streams and those associated with semi-arid regions. Typical reptiles
associated with wetlands or streams include the spotted turtle, eastern milk snake, snapping
turtle, and eastern musk turtle. Typical reptiles associated with forests or forest edge areas
include the box turtle, common garter snake, timber rattlesnake, eastern fence lizard, and
common five-lined skink (NatureServe, 2014).
Terrestrial Insects
A variety of butterflies, moths, bees, spiders, beetles, and other insects are common in the
ACP Project area and SHP Project area. Insects are important sources of food for many species,
and some act as pollinators and nutrient recyclers (Hopkin, 2006). Pollinators are important
species in ecosystems, pollinating flowers, fruit, and vegetable crops. Common pollinators
include various species of bees, moths, and butterflies, such as the American bumblebee,
honeybee, Monarch butterfly, and sphinx moth.
Invasive Animals and Insects
Invasive and nuisance animal species can quickly move into an area of disturbance and
exclude or out-compete native species. Common invasive species in the ACP Project area
include wild boar, nutria, gypsy moth, and European starling. Common invasive species in the
SHP Project area include the emerald ash borer, gypsy moth, and European starling.
Wild boars were first brought to the East Coast of the United States as game animals.
Since becoming established, the species has damaged native vegetation and agricultural crops,
and additionally poses an ongoing threat of spreading diseases to domestic swine and wildlife
(NCWRC 2014f). Nutrias, which are native to South America, were initially brought to the
United States to breed for their fur, but they subsequently were released or escaped to the wild.
Typically found near aquatic areas, nutria disrupt riparian and wetland vegetation as these
mammals directly consume or construct long burrows that alter drainage and root structures
(USDA, 2014e). The gypsy moth was introduced to the United States from Europe for silk
production, but subsequently escaped to the wild. Gypsy moths defoliate deciduous vegetation,
harming or killing trees. European starlings were introduced to North America in 1890 and have
become established throughout the continent. The starlings directly compete for nesting areas
with native birds, often displacing native birds, or destroying their eggs. The emerald ash borer
is native to Asia, arriving in North America in the early 2000s. It feeds only on ash trees killing
them in the process, usually within three to four years (Cornell Lab of Ornithology, 2011).
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3.3.2 Construction and Operations Impacts and Mitigation
Construction and operation of the Projects could result in short- and long-term impacts on
wildlife species and their existing habitats along the proposed pipeline routes and at aboveground
facility sites. The extent and duration of impacts will vary depending on the species present in
each affected habitat type and their individual life histories. Construction activities will likely
displace species from within and areas adjacent to the rights-of-way, but the impact is expected
to be short-term and limited to the period of construction. As discussed in more detail in
Sections 3.4.3 and 3.7, timing restrictions for vegetation clearing will minimize impacts on
species such as nesting migratory birds and roosting bats.
After construction is complete, Atlantic and DTI will restore the rights-of-way as near as
practicable to preconstruction conditions in accordance with the Plan and Procedures and the
other construction, restoration, and mitigation plans developed for the Projects (to be provided in
Appendix 1F of the final Resource Report 1). Cropland will be restored to active agricultural
production, and other areas will be revegetated using methods and seed mixes appropriate to
existing land uses and cover types. With the exception of forested lands, as discussed below, the
Projects will not permanently alter the characteristics of the majority of the available wildlife
habitats. Consequently, most impacts on wildlife are expected to be temporary.
3.3.2.1 Pipeline Facilities
Until vegetation is re-established, construction activities in the pipeline rights-of-way will
reduce feeding, nesting, roosting, and cover habitat components. Mobile species could be
temporarily disturbed or displaced from portions of their habitats, and mortality of individuals of
less mobile species, such as some small mammals, reptiles, or amphibians, could occur. Indirect
wildlife impacts associated with construction noise, blasting, and increased human activity could
include abandoned reproductive efforts, displacement, and avoidance of work areas, though these
impacts will be temporary. Both direct and indirect impacts on wildlife along the proposed
pipeline routes and in other work areas will generally be of short duration and limited to the
period of construction.
Following construction, temporary workspace, including ATWS, as well as non-forested
areas within the permanent pipeline easement, will be allowed to revert to preconstruction
conditions and cover types. In order to maintain accessibility of the right-of-way and to
accommodate pipeline integrity surveys, vegetation along the right-of-way may be cleared
periodically in accordance with the Plan and Procedures (except in areas crossed by HDD, where
vegetation maintenance will not be conducted). Active cropland will be allowed to revert to
preconstruction use for the full width of the right-of-way. In non-cultivated uplands, the full
permanent easement will be maintained in an herbaceous state. In wetlands, the Procedures
allow for a 10-foot-wide corridor centered over the pipeline to be permanently maintained in an
herbaceous state, and trees greater than 15 feet in height within 15 feet of the pipeline may be cut
and removed from the right-of-way.
Effects on most non-forested upland and wetland habitats disturbed by construction will
be temporary, and these areas are expected to recover quickly once construction and restoration
is completed. Similarly, impacts on scrub/shrub and emergent wetland habitats will be relatively
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short term. Because of the linear nature of the Projects, temporary impacts in these habitats will
be minimized by the presence of similar habitat communities adjacent to the right-of-way.
Additionally, non-forested plant communities can be replanted with similar species which reach
maturity relatively quickly compared to forested areas. Neighboring areas will allow wildlife to
disperse sufficiently to continue to utilize similar habitats. The temporary effects on these
habitats should have little or no significant impact on their importance to wildlife, and no
changes to wildlife populations are anticipated.
Upland and wetland forested areas will be impacted to a greater extent than non-forested
vegetation types due to the longer time requirement for the conversion of earlier successional
stages to mature wooded habitats in the temporary right-of-way. In the permanent, maintained
easement, there will be a permanent conversion of forested land to scrub/shrub and/or nonwoody herbaceous species. Impacts on forest dwelling species include temporary and permanent
habitat loss, fragmentation of habitat, and the addition of edge-type habitat. Locally, species
composition could change as habitats are converted post-construction from forested to
scrub/shrub or herbaceous, and edges are created along the new pipeline corridors.
Atlantic was approached by the NRCS in North Carolina regarding the potential to
restore the right-of-way with plant species that attract pollinators such as bees and butterflies.
Atlantic and DTI are currently investigating potential seed mixes and restoration and
maintenance practices which could provide suitable habitat for pollinator species in the
maintained permanent easements for the pipelines. Additional information on this issue will be
provided in the final Resource Report 3.
Fragmentation refers to the breaking up of contiguous areas of vegetation communities
into smaller patches. Fragment size plays a crucial role in landscape function and many
ecosystem interactions, including the distribution of plants and animals, fire regime, vegetation
structure, and wildlife habitat. Reducing the size of contiguous patches of suitable habitat can
indirectly reduce the effectiveness of that habitat for individual species beyond the removal of
habitat. Some species require large, un-fragmented blocks of habitat, and fragmentation can lead
to reduced habitat quality.
An important impact of fragmentation, aside from breaking up blocks of vegetation, is an
increase in edge effects. Edge effects result when two different vegetation types are adjacent to
each other. Edge effects can encompass a multitude of impacts including: an alteration in
nutrient flows/cycling; an increase in the rate of invasion by invasive species and pathogens; a
lowering of the carrying capacity of a habitat patch; and disruptions in meta-population
dynamics (Saunders et al., 1991).
Edge effects tend to be more pronounced with increasing differences in the two adjacent
habitat types (e.g., mature forest adjacent to grassland). The creation of edges in forests
influences microclimatic factors such as temperature, wind, humidity, and light, and could lead
to a change in plant species composition within the adjacent uncut or un-manipulated habitat, or
increase the rate of invasion by invasive species and forest pathogens (Murcia, 1995). Compared
to the interior of a forest, areas near edges receive more direct solar radiation during the day, lose
more long-wave radiation at night, have lower humidity, and have less protection from
wind. Increased sunlight and wind can desiccate vegetation by increasing evapotranspiration,
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affect which plant species survive (typically favoring shade-intolerant species), and dry out
soil. Edge effects are typically more pronounced in forest and woodland vegetation communities
than shrub-steppe or grassland communities due to the greater typical vegetation height and
structural complexity in forested ecosystems.
The Projects will cause permanent fragmentation and edge effects only in forested areas,
since the vegetation in non-forested areas will not be modified permanently. The edge effect on
forested habitat in temporary workspace and ATWS could last several decades; in the maintained
pipeline easement, the impact on forested habitat will be permanent. In areas where the
proposed pipeline corridors are adjacent to existing rights-of-way, clearing will result in moving
an existing edge outward, rather than creating newly fragmented forested habitat.
The NCDENR, the VDGIF, and USFS have commented about habitat fragmentation
because the majority of the proposed ACP pipeline routes are greenfield. As discussed in detail
in Resource Report 10, a number of route alternatives, route variations, and route adjustments
have been identified and incorporated into the Projects to reduce impacts on sensitive habitats
(see Resource Report 10). Moreover, due to potential impacts on forested habitats, particularly
as they relate to impacts on migratory birds, Atlantic and DTI are developing a Migratory Bird
Plan that will include measures to mitigate for impacts in forested areas (see Section 3.4).
Atlantic and DTI will implement specialized construction techniques to minimize impacts
on wetlands as described in Resource Report 2. Additionally, Atlantic and DTI will develop a
Compensatory Wetland Mitigation Plan to mitigate for the permanent conversion of wetland
types, which will compensate for impacts on wetland habitat and species, including forested
wetlands.
The proposed ACP pipeline routes cross the MNF, GWNF, and Great Dismal Swamp
National Wildlife Refuge. Atlantic and DTI have conducted multiple meetings with these
agencies to discuss avoidance and minimization measures for sensitive wildlife habitats.
Routing through the MNF is ongoing. For the GWNF, Atlantic and DTI are working with the
USFS staff to develop a route that minimizes the crossing length and avoids sensitive areas
within the GWNF. Atlantic and DTI conducted several site visits in the vicinity of the Great
Dismal Swamp National Wildlife Refuge to review the initial baseline route, and several
alternatives designed to avoid or minimize crossings of the refuge have been identified. Review
of these alternative routes is ongoing.
3.3.2.2 Aboveground Facilities
Construction of the compressor and M&R stations for the ACP will result in minimal
additional impacts on wildlife because the facilities will be adjacent to the pipeline construction
rights-of-way. Measures used to minimize impacts during construction of aboveground facilities
will be similar to those for pipeline construction. These will include implementation of erosion
and sedimentation controls and other measures as specified by the Plan and Procedures and the
other construction, restoration, and mitigation plans developed for the Projects (to be provided in
Appendix 1F of the final Resource Report 1.
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The proposed modifications at the existing JB Tonkin, Crayne, and Mockingbird Hill
Compressor Stations for the SHP will result in minimal additional impacts on wildlife. The
modifications at these sites will occur within and in areas immediately adjacent to the existing
facilities. As with the ACP, construction and restoration activities will comply with the Plan and
Procedures and the other construction, restoration, and mitigation plans developed for the
Projects (to be provided in Appendix 1F of the final Resource Report 1). The proposed
modifications at the Burch Ridge Compressor Station are not expected to affect wildlife; the
modifications at this site will occur within the existing facility.
Minimal impacts on wildlife species and their habitats will result from construction and
operation of the mainline valves and pig launchers/receivers. Additional habitat will not be
impacted, as these facilities are located within or adjacent the proposed pipeline rights-of-way or
within compressor station yards. Construction of these facilities will not result in additional
impacts on wildlife or habitat.
3.3.2.3 Access Roads and Other Work Areas
For both Projects, Atlantic and DTI are in the process of identifying roads that will be
used to provide access to the proposed pipeline rights-of-way and other facilities during
construction and operation of the Projects. In addition, Atlantic and DTI are in the process of
identifying temporary pipe storage and contractor yards that will be needed to store equipment
and stage construction activities. Additional information about the impacts on wildlife along the
access roads and at the pipe storage and contractor yards will be provided in the final Resource
Report 3.
3.3.2.4 Operations
Operation of the proposed pipelines will cause minimal impacts on wildlife species.
Vegetation maintenance activities will be consistent with the Plan. Routine vegetation mowing
or clearing within the permanent rights-of-way will be completed no more than once every three
years (manual clearing only). Vegetation clearing activities additionally will occur outside of the
nesting season for migratory birds (generally April 15 to August 1, but March 15 through
August 15 in Virginia), which will minimize impacts on nesting birds. Tree clearing on the
rights-of-way will occur during Winter months to avoid potential impacts on roosting bats. In
forested areas, there will be permanent conversion of forested habitat to shrub-scrub or grassland
vegetation for operational safety of the pipeline creating an edge effect as discussed above.
Most potential impacts on wildlife species and their habitats will result from direct
habitat modification and disturbance during construction rather than operation of the Projects.
However, right-of-way maintenance activities could produce noise above ambient levels due to
the operation of machinery required for pipeline maintenance. Any effects on wildlife from
noise due to maintenance will be temporary and short-term. Therefore, noise-related impacts on
wildlife due to maintenance activities will be limited in duration and extent.
Operation of the aboveground facilities will include minimal permanent conversion of
habitat for compressor and M&R stations. Noise from operation of these facilities can decrease
use of a site by more noise sensitive species (such as bats and birds) or during sensitive times of
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the year (such as breeding). Noise could mask communications by wildlife species, or displace
them entirely. If there are already high levels of ambient noise in the area (e.g., from existing
compressor stations, highway noise, and other human activities in the area), the additional noise
from facilities may be negligible and species could acclimate. Otherwise, some species may be
displaced due to noise, but there is ample suitable habitat available in the vicinity of the
aboveground facility sites to accommodate these species.
3.4
MIGRATORY BIRDS
The Migratory Bird Treaty Act (MBTA) protects migratory birds and most resident bird
species within the United States. Migratory birds include species that nest in the United States
and Canada during the Summer and migrate south to warmer regions of the United States,
Mexico, Central and South America, and the Caribbean for the Winter. With a few exceptions,
all bird species that are native to the United States are protected by the MBTA. Under the
MBTA, it is illegal to pursue; hunt; take; capture; kill; attempt to take, capture, or kill; possess;
offer for sale; and export, import, or transport birds, their parts (e.g., feathers), and active nests
(and the eggs or young within). Unlike the ESA, the MBTA does not include harassment or
destruction of habitat in its list of prohibitions or within its definition of take. Executive
Order 13186 (January 2001) was established to assure that the environmental impacts of Federal
agency actions are properly evaluated for impacts on migratory birds, with emphasis on species
of concern, priority habitats, and key risk factors.
3.4.1 Important Bird Areas
Important Bird Areas are sites identified by the National Audubon Society that provide
essential habitat for one or more species of birds. These areas can support breeding, wintering,
or migrating birds; can be publicly or privately owned; and may or may not be protected
(National Audubon Society, 2014a). As shown in Table 3.4.1-1, the proposed ACP facilities
cross six Important Bird Areas in Virginia and North Carolina and the proposed SHP facilities
cross one Important Bird Area in West Virginia.
3.4.2 Migratory Birds in the Project Area
A variety of migratory bird species could occur seasonally along the proposed pipeline
routes. The Projects will be located in the Atlantic Flyway, which is a major migratory route for
birds during both Spring and Fall. A variety of migratory bird species, including both songbirds
and raptors, use the vegetation communities identified along the proposed pipelines as part of
their migratory route. Productive riparian, wetland, and coastal habitats are typically important
for migratory birds in the Atlantic Flyway. Bird species that are predominantly associated with
migratory patterns in the ACP Project area and SHP Project area include wood thrush,
canvasback, American black duck, mallard, ruby-throated hummingbird, white-eyed vireo,
summer tanager, hooded warbler, broad-winged hawk, common tern, black-throated blue
warbler, and cerulean warbler (National Audubon Society, 2014b, Ducks Unlimited, 2014).
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TABLE 3.4.1-1
Important Bird Areas Occurring in the Vicinity of the Atlantic Coast Pipeline and Supply Header Project
Important Bird Area
Project Component
Milepost
Description
SHP TL-635
MP 23.0 to 28.5
Important habitats include dry deciduous and moist
deciduous forest. These “cove forests” tend to have
high species richness.
ACP AP-1
MP 80.1 to 103.5
Important habitats include successional habitat,
pasturelands, grassy fields, shrubby edges, mixed
hardwood forests. The area is an important migratory
pathway for Neotropical migrants.
Upper Blue Ridge
Mountains
ACP AP-1
MP 147.8 to 157.2
Important habitats include rocky outcrops, dry ridges,
cove forests, diverse forest communities, and mature
deciduous forests. The area is a significant Fall raptor
flyway and stopover habitat for migrating passerines.
Central Piedmont
ACP AP-1
MP 159.3 to 163.5 and
MP 163.6 to 163.7 and
164.0 to 203.8
Important habitats include early to mid-successional
grasslands and scrub/shrub habitats, hardwood, mixed,
and pine forests, and fallow fields.
Great Dismal Swamp
ACP AP-3
MP 60.0 to 61.3 and 62.3
to 71.5
Important habitats include forested wetlands, cypresstupelo habitat, and Atlantic white-cedar forest. The area
is a significant stopover habitat for migrating passerines
in the Spring and Fall.
Roanoke River
Bottomlands
ACP AP-2
MP 301.3 to 302.3 and
MP 303.3 to 304.0
Important habitats include bottomland hardwood forest,
and bald cypress and water tupelo habitats. The area
supports several colonies of wading birds and breeding
ducks. Neotropical migrants are known to breed in the
Important Bird Area.
Upper Neuse River
Bottomlands
ACP AP-2
MP 388.8 to 393.2
Important habitats include bottomland hardwood forest,
cypress-tupelo-gum swamp forest, pine forest, mixed
hardwood forest, and grassland.
WEST VIRGINIA
Lewis Wetzel Wildlife
Management Area
VIRGINIA
Allegheny Highlands
NORTH CAROLINA
____________________
Source: National Audubon Society 2014a.
Although the MBTA provides protection for all migratory birds and their nests, it is
standard practice as noted in EO 13186 and a Memorandum of Understanding between the
FERC and FWS (unless notified otherwise by the FWS) to use the Birds of Conservation
Concern (BCC) list when evaluating the potential impact of a project on migratory birds. This
list identifies “species, subspecies, and populations of all migratory nongame birds that, without
additional conservation actions, are likely to become candidates for listing” under the ESA.
Atlantic and DTI compiled a list of important or sensitive migratory birds that could
potentially occur along the proposed pipeline corridors for the Projects (FWS, 2008). The
proposed AP-1 mainline route crosses Bird Conservation Region (BCR) 28 - Appalachian
Mountains, BCR 29 - Piedmont, and BCR 27 - Southern Coastal Plain; the AP-2 mainline and
AP-3 lateral routes cross BCR 27 - Southeastern Coastal Plain; and the AP-4 and AP-5 lateral
routes cross BCR 29 - Piedmont. The SHP crosses BCR 28, Appalachian Mountains. The BCC
birds potentially found in the ACP Project area and SHP Project area based on these BCRs
(identified through a FWS Information Planning and Conservation System (IPaC System)
review) are listed in Appendix 3C.
During breeding/nesting season, birds select specific habitat types that provide protection
from predators and sufficient food sources. The vegetation types crossed by the Projects are
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identified in Section 3.3 above. The predominant vegetation community crossed by the proposed
ACP (54.7 percent) and SHP (84.0 percent) facilities is mixed forest. These communities are
used by migratory birds for nesting and during other life stages.
Based on the IPaC BCC bird list, a combined total of 51 bird species are expected to
breed in the ACP Project area and SHP Project area. Additionally, a review of NCWRC Natural
Heritage Inventory (NHI) data identified a colonial wading bird rookery along the proposed AP2 mainline, approximately 130 feet to the west of the proposed workspace near MP 323.9 in
Halifax County, North Carolina (NCDENR, 2014b). Aerial surveys identified nine additional
rookeries within 0.5 mile of the workspace for the AP-2 mainline.
3.4.3 Impacts on Migratory Birds
While the MBTA has no provision for allowing unauthorized take, the FWS has
recognized that some birds may be taken even if all reasonable measures to avoid take are
implemented. The FWS carries out its mission to protect migratory birds through investigations
and enforcement; by fostering relationships with individuals, companies, other agencies, and
industries that have taken effective steps to minimize their impacts on migratory birds; and by
encouraging others to enact such programs. It is not possible to absolve individuals, companies,
or agencies from liability even if they implement avian mortality avoidance or similar
conservation measures. However, the FWS focuses its resources on investigating and
prosecuting individuals and companies that take migratory birds without identifying and
implementing reasonable, prudent, and effective measures to avoid take (e.g., time of year
restrictions).
Atlantic and DTI are developing conservation measures that would minimize impacts on
migratory birds. These measures will be outlined in the Migratory Bird Plan for the Projects,
which will be provided in Appendix 1F of the final Resource Report 1. The MBTA prohibition
most germane to pipeline construction, operation, and maintenance is the killing of an individual
or egg (through destruction of an active nest).
While the FWS can issue permits for the take of migratory birds, the FWS to date has not
authorized such permits or produced guidance documents or a rule making for dealing with this
issue. Further, while the MBTA has no provision for allowing unauthorized take, the FWS has
recognized that some birds may be taken even if all reasonable measures to avoid take are
implemented. The FWS is considering development of a permitting program to allow incidental
take for migratory birds; however, at this time there has been no official action towards this
permit program by the FWS. The FWS has memorandums of understanding with the FERC,
NPS, and USFS which include commitments to avoid or minimize impacts on migratory birds
and promote conservation.
To address potential impacts on migratory birds, Atlantic and DTI have taken appropriate
steps to avoid and minimize the potential for the unintentional take of migratory birds during
construction and operation of the proposed facilities. Further, implementation of the required
construction and operational practices for FERC-regulated projects, as described in the Plan and
Procedures, will reduce the potential for impacts on migratory birds. Mitigation required for
wetland impacts under Section 404 of the Clean Water Act, particularly mitigation for the
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conversion of forested wetlands to other cover types, will provide habitat mitigation for birds
that utilize wetland habitats.
It is possible that construction, operation, and maintenance of the Projects could result in
impacts on migratory birds. Potential impacts on nesting migratory bird species include direct
impacts on nesting birds; noise generated during construction which could disturb nesting birds,
if present; habitat fragmentation; and loss of wooded habitat, including temporary removal of
vegetation, which could cause nesting species to relocate to other suitable habitat.
Atlantic and DTI are consulting with the FWS regarding impacts on migratory birds.
Copies of correspondence between Atlantic and DTI and the FWS are provided in Appendix 1H
(ACP) and Appendix 1I (SHP). As noted above, a Migratory Bird Plan is being developed to
identify avoidance, minimization, and mitigation measures for effects to migratory birds as a
result of the Projects. The plan will be included in Appendix 1F of the final Resource Report 1.
In correspondence with Atlantic, the West Virginia FWS (in a letter dated December 9,
2014) provided the following recommendations to reduce impacts on migratory birds and their
habitats:

Clear natural or semi-natural habitats (e.g., forests, woodlots, reverting fields,
fencerows, and shrubby areas) between September 1 and March 31, which is
outside the nesting season for most native bird species.

Avoid fragmenting large, contiguous tracts of wildlife habitat, where feasible,
especially in circumstances where habitat cannot be fully restored after
construction. Maintain contiguous habitat corridors, where possible, to facilitate
dispersal. Where practicable, concentrate construction activities, infrastructure,
and man-made structures (e.g., roads, parking lots, and staging areas) on lands
already cultivated, and away from areas of intact and healthy native habitats.

To reduce habitat fragmentation, co-locate roads, lay down areas, staging areas,
and other infrastructure in or immediately adjacent to already disturbed areas
(e.g., existing roads, pipelines, and agricultural fields). Where this is not possible,
minimize roads and other infrastructure. To minimize habitat loss and
fragmentation, cluster development features (e.g., lay down areas, staging areas,
and roads) where possible rather than distributing infrastructure broadly across the
landscape.
The North Carolina, Virginia, and Pennsylvania FWS offices have not yet provided
recommendations to reduce impacts on migratory birds.
Atlantic and DTI, in accordance with West Virginia FWS recommendations, have and
will continue to implement measures such as clearing outside of the nesting season and
implementing activity buffers around active nests for certain species; limiting the width of the
construction corridor to the minimum needed to safely build the pipeline; and utilizing routing as
a tool to avoid impacts on discrete habitats and environmental features to avoid impacts on
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migratory birds that use these areas to nest. These measures are described below and in will be
included in the Migratory Bird Plan for the Projects.
The clearing phase of construction has the greatest potential for impacts if conducted
during the nesting season. Construction in agricultural and other open areas are likely to have
the least extent of impacts as nesting densities are typically lower in areas with a regular
disturbance regime, and disturbance of nesting habitat will only be temporary.
Take of, or direct impacts on, migratory birds are not expected due to the timing of
vegetation clearing activities. Vegetation clearing activities associated with construction of the
proposed pipelines are scheduled to occur outside the migratory and nesting seasons for most
migratory birds in the region. As shown in Table 1.6-1 in Resource Report 1, tree clearing for
the 2017 construction spreads is expected to occur between November 2016 and March 2017;
and tree clearing for 2018 spreads is expected to occur between November 2017 and
March 2018. These clearing timeframes are in accordance with recommendations from the
VDGIF (in a letter dated February 19, 2015) that significant tree removal and ground-clearing
activities should occur outside the primary nesting season for songbirds in Virginia, which runs
from March 15 through August 15.
Raptor nests (including eagle nests) identified during habitat assessments or eagle nest
surveys will have appropriate no activity restrictions in buffers around the nests if the nests are
active at the time of construction. Atlantic and DTI are consulting with State/Commonwealth
agencies to determine appropriate no-activity buffers for active rookeries. Conservation
measures for the federally listed red-cockaded woodpecker and wood stork will be developed in
consultation with the FWS and implemented as described in Section 3.7.
While construction activities for the new compressor stations (beginning in the Spring of
2017) could overlap with migratory or nesting seasons for some birds, existing tree cover within
the station sites will be cleared prior to the nesting season similar to the proposed pipelines. For
other aboveground facilities, work will largely occur within or along the pipeline rights-of-way
which will be cleared ahead of the nesting season.
Impacts from vegetation clearing on migratory bird species requiring contiguous forested
patches are important because nesting densities tend to be higher in these habitats. Habitat for
shrubland species is often created by various disturbance events, so impacts in these areas are
generally expected to be less than in forested lands. Some bird species that use open or
shrubland habitats could benefit from the habitat conditions created by the proposed Projects in
the maintained rights-of-way.
Construction activities at other times of the year could impact migratory birds, but
suitable habitat will be available in areas immediately adjacent to the construction areas.
Construction activities and noise are only expected to temporarily displace migratory birds from
the immediate construction areas.
While the Projects are expected to comply with the MBTA, activities required for
construction have the potential to affect migratory bird habitat. Atlantic and DTI have already
taken steps to minimize impacts on migratory birds, e.g., by routing the proposed facilities to
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avoid sensitive areas (see Resource Report 10). Additionally, Atlantic and DTI will implement
other measures to avoid and minimize such impacts, such as clearing outside of the nesting
season and implementing activity buffers around active nests for certain species. Despite these
efforts, construction and operation of the Projects will result in the permanent loss of some
forested nesting habitat, most notably deciduous and coniferous forests.
To further minimize, mitigate, and compensate for long-term impacts in forested areas,
Atlantic and DTI will develop and implement a Migratory Bird Plan. The plan will identify
conservation measures and best management practices for the Projects to address migratory birds
and their habitats. The Migratory Bird Plan will be provided in Appendix 1F of the final
Resource Report 1.
After construction is complete, Atlantic and DTI will restore the construction rights-ofway as near as practicable to preconstruction condition in accordance with the Plan and
Procedures and the other construction, restoration, and mitigation plans developed for the
Projects (to be provided in Appendix 1F of the final Resource Report 1). Cropland will be
restored to active agricultural production, and other areas will be revegetated using methods and
seed mixes appropriate to existing land uses and cover types. Atlantic and DTI anticipates that
the majority of the temporary use areas will recover to pre-disturbance conditions over time.
Regular maintenance of vegetation in the permanent rights-of-way will be conducted in
accordance with the Plan and Procedures. The Plan does not allow routine vegetation
maintenance clearing more frequently than every 3 years, with the exception of a 10-foot-wide
corridor centered over the pipeline, which can be maintained annually in an herbaceous state to
facilitate periodic corrosion and leak surveys. Additionally, the Plan prohibits clearing between
April 15 and August 1 of any year to avoid disruption of nesting birds.
Given the proposed timing of vegetation clearing, the Projects are not expected to result
in direct impacts on migratory birds. Additionally, based on the relatively limited extent of the
proposed disturbance within the broader landscape, and with the implementation of the proposed
mitigation and restoration measures, no substantial changes in habitat availability or suitability
are anticipated as a result of the Projects. As such, the Projects are not expected to result in
adverse permanent or cumulative impacts on migratory birds or migratory bird populations.
3.5
BALD AND GOLDEN EAGLES
Beyond the MBTA, the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act (BGEPA) provides
additional protection to bald and golden eagles. The BGEPA prohibits the take, possession, sale,
purchase, barter, offer to sell, purchase, or barter, transport, export or import, of any bald or
golden eagle, alive or dead, including any part, nest, or egg, unless allowed by permit. “Take”
under this act is defined as “to pursue, shoot, shoot at, poison, wound, kill, capture, trap, collect,
or molest or disturb.” Disturb is defined as “to agitate or bother a bald or golden eagle to a
degree that causes, or is likely to cause, based on the best scientific information available,
(1) injury to an eagle, (2) a decrease in its productivity, by substantially interfering with normal
breeding, feeding, or sheltering behavior, or (3) nest abandonment, by substantially interfering
with normal breeding, feeding, or sheltering behavior.” If a proposed project or action occurs in
an area where nesting, feeding, or roosting eagles occur, the proponent often needs to implement
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special conservation measures to comply with the BGEPA. FWS guidance on complying with
the BGEPA is found in the National Bald Eagle Management Guidelines (FWS, 2007a).
In addition to the protection provided under the BGEPA, bald eagles in Virginia are also
protected under Virginia’s Endangered Species Act, the Federal Endangered Species Act
Cooperative Agreement, and the State Protection of Wildlife Species.
Bald eagles could occur in both the ACP Project area and SHP Project area. Golden
eagles are not known to nest in Virginia, West Virginia, or Pennsylvania; however, they migrate
along Appalachian Mountain ridgelines in Spring and Fall in Virginia and West Virginia and are
known to occasionally use Winter habitat in Appalachian Mountain ridges and valleys (WVDNR
2014e; VDGIF 2014e). Golden eagles do not occur in North Carolina.
Atlantic and DTI consulted with the West Virginia Field Office of the FWS, WVDNR,
Virginia Field Office of the FWS, VDGIF, North Carolina Field Office of the FWS, NCDENR,
NCWRC, and the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources to obtain
location information on known bald eagle nests in the vicinity of the Projects. Copies of
correspondence with these agencies are provided in Appendices 1H (ACP) and 1I (SHP).
Eagle nest information has been requested from the WVDNR and will be included in the
final version of Resource Report 3.
In Virginia, Atlantic and DTI will follow the project review process and guidelines
outlined in the “Management of Bald Eagle Nests, Concentration Areas, and Communal Roosts
in Virginia: A Guide for Landowners,” issued by the VDGIF in 2012; and the Virginia Field
Office of the FWS “Endangered Species: Project Reviews in Virginia Step 6a – Eagle Nests”
(FWS 2014c). This process involves reviewing online nest data to determine if any known
active or historic nests are located in the vicinity of a project.
Based on data from the Virginia NHI, there are four occurrences of known bald eagles nests
within 2 miles of the proposed ACP pipeline routes in Virginia. Preliminary review of the Center for
Conservation Biology’s (CCB) Virginia Eagle Nest Locator indicated that there are nests and
communal roosts in the vicinity of the proposed routes. Review of CCB and VDGIF eagle nest
databases did not identify any eagle nests within 660 feet of the ACP, though one nest was
identified within one mile (CCB 2015; VDGIF 2015a). Atlantic and DTI will work with the
VDGIF and Virginia FWS to make sure that the ACP is planned in accordance with 2012
VDGIF and 2014 Virginia FWS guidelines.
The North Carolina NHI data identified two occurrences of known bald eagle nests
within 2 miles of the proposed CP pipelines in North Carolina. Atlantic and DTI conducted
aerial surveys for bald eagles in North Carolina in conjunction with the aerial surveys for red
cockaded woodpecker in March 2015. Aerial surveys did not identify any active bald eagle nests
within 1,000 feet of the AP-2 mainline in North Carolina.
DTI used the PNDI Project Environmental Review online system to review locational
data for species, including eagles. Based on the receipt from the PDNI, no known sensitive
resources, including bald or golden eagles, are known to occur in the vicinity of the proposed
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SHP facilities in Pennsylvania. No further review for the SHP is required with the Pennsylvania
Game Commission (PGC) or FWS for eagles in Pennsylvania.
If bald or golden eagle nests or occupied Winter roosting habitat are identified during
field surveys or at any time during construction of the Projects, Atlantic and DTI will follow
procedures developed in consultation with the FWS and appropriate State wildlife agencies.
These procedures will be described in the Migratory Bird Plan, which is being developed for the
Projects (to be provided in Appendix 1F of the final Resource Report 1).
3.6
MARINE MAMMALS
All marine mammals are protected under the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) of
1972. Some marine mammals are afforded additional protections under the ESA if they are
federally listed as threatened or endangered. The MMPA prohibits, with certain exceptions, the
taking of marine mammals in U.S. waters and by U.S. citizens on the high seas and the
importation of marine mammals and marine mammal products into the United States. The term
“take” as defined in Section 3 of the MMPA means “to harm, hunt, capture, or kill, or attempt to
harass, hunt, capture, or kill any marine mammal” (16 USC § 1362(13)). Some marine
mammals are afforded additional protections under the ESA if they are federally listed as
threatened or endangered; however, the Projects are not expected to impact federally listed
marine mammals.
To assess the potential occurrence of marine mammals in waterbodies crossed by the
ACP, Atlantic reviewed multiple online resources available through NOAA Fisheries website
and State/Commonwealth resource agencies including the U.S. Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico
Marine Mammal Stock Assessments – 2013 and The Marine Mammals of Virginia. Based on
this review, bottlenose dolphin and harbor seal were identified as having the potential to occur in
the ACP Project area in the City of Chesapeake. The proposed AP-3 lateral route crosses the
Southern Branch Elizabeth River, which has the potential to contain these species.
Atlantic submitted requests for early coordination and technical assistance in September
2014 with a follow-up in February 2015 to the NOAA Fisheries’ Office of Protected Resources
(OPR). Atlantic requested verification of the list of marine mammal species that may occur
within the ACP Project area, information on known occurrences of species, and direction
regarding measures for avoiding, minimizing, and mitigating impacts on the species.
Correspondence with the OPR (2015b) did not identify any additional species that may occur in
the ACP Project area.
Bottlenose Dolphin
The bottlenose dolphin is the most frequently observed marine mammal along the
Atlantic coast. The bottlenose dolphins that occur in the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries are
adapted to warmer, shallower waters and are a slimmer variety (coastal ecotype) than those
found in the open ocean (offshore ecotype). The bottlenose dolphin is not listed as federally
threatened or endangered under the ESA; however, the Atlantic coastal stock was deemed
“depleted” by NOAA Fisheries after a disease eliminated half the stock in 1987 and 1988.
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The diet of a bottlenose dolphin varies greatly depending on the ecotype, but coastal
dolphins feed on small fish and invertebrates, while offshore types feed on squid and pelagic
fish. Those that live in the Chesapeake Bay have been known to prey on catfish, eels, menhaden,
mullet, shrimp, crabs, and squid. The only predators the bottlenose dolphin faces are large
sharks and killer whales, but attacks are rare. The threat of humans is greater than these
predators. Incidental catch from fishing operations and chemical pollutants are the biggest
threats to the bottlenose dolphin today (Jenkins 2009, Coleman 2007).
NOAA Fisheries (2015b) indicated that bottlenose dolphins may occur in the lower and
middle Chesapeake Bay during the Summer near Cape Charles, as well as in the James and
Elizabeth rivers. The dolphins may travel as far north as Baltimore Harbor, the Chester River,
and near Washington, D.C., but that is rare. They are likely not present during colder months.
Harbor Seal
Harbor seals are the most widespread pinniped in the world, with populations throughout
the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans and at least five subspecies. The western Atlantic Ocean harbor
seals are distributed from the French coast to the North Sea and northward to the Barents Sea, as
well as along the Atlantic coast of North America. Harbor seals populate the shallow waters of
coastal areas, bays, rocky islets, estuaries, and even freshwater lakes. They are typically seen
near piers and beaches, as well as on inter-coastal islands. Breeding occurs during a 10-week
period ranging from late Winter to Summer. Females typically give birth to one pup every year,
with an average gestation period of 10.5 months. Diet preferences vary by region, but overall the
harbor seal is a carnivore that feeds on fish. Sharks and killer whales are its main predators, but
the main threat to the harbor seal is humans and human activities, in particular, pollution (Cale,
2012).
The harbor seal has potential to occur in the ACP Project area in the City of Chesapeake
where the AP-3 lateral will cross the Southern Branch Elizabeth River. Seals are mainly seen
during the Winter months in and around the Chesapeake Bay. In recent years, small numbers of
seals (less than 50) have established Winter haul-out sites in the Chesapeake Bay. NOAA
Fisheries (2015b) has indicated that harbor seals may occur near Virginia Beach, Linkhorn Bay,
and even Hopewell, up the James River. They infrequently occur in small groups near islands of
the Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel in Spring and Summer.
3.6.1 Impacts on Marine Mammals
In-water work associated with construction of the ACP has the potential to impact
bottlenose dolphins and harbor seals due to periodic increases in both underwater and surface
noise. Seals and dolphins may avoid use of inshore areas near construction activities. No
suitable harbor seal haul outs, including shorelines, piers, jetties, and rock islands are known to
occur near the proposed pipeline right-of-way. Therefore, seals would only experience surface
noise loud enough to cause harassment during construction activities if swimming near the ACP
Project area. Spills, leaks, or accidental releases of fuels, lubricants, or other hazardous
substances during construction of the pipeline could result in mortality of seals or dolphins in the
vicinity of the spill; however, Atlantic will follow its SPCC to reduce the risk of unanticipated
spills.
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Based on the rare occurrence of marine mammals in the waters to be crossed by the AP-3
lateral, poor habitat quality for these species in the ACP Project area, and the abundance of more
suitable habitat for the species outside the vicinity Project area, the risk of harassment on marine
mammals is very low. If in-water work is required, it is expected that harassment to marine
mammals could be avoided with the implementation of a marine mammal protection plan. The
marine mammal protection plan could involve timing restrictions for in-water work and/or
monitoring for marine mammals during in-water work by a qualified marine mammal observer
with stop work authority within a pre-established safety zone. NOAA Fisheries (2015b) has
indicated that the implementation of monitoring and mitigation measures, such as time of year
restrictions, shutdown procedures, and observers, would eliminate the need for an Incidental
Harassment Authorization from the OPR.
Atlantic is evaluating use of the HDD construction method to install the AP-3 lateral
beneath the Southern Branch Elizabeth River. The HDD method would eliminate the need for
in-water work at the crossing and avoid or minimize direct impacts on marine mammals.
3.7
ENDANGERED AND THREATENED SPECIES
Section 7 of the ESA requires Federal agencies to verify that any actions authorized,
funded, or carried out by the agencies do not jeopardize the continued existence of a federally
listed threatened or endangered species, or result in the destruction or adverse modification of
designated critical habitat for a federally listed species. The law is jointly administered by the
FWS, which is responsible for terrestrial and freshwater species, and NOAA Fisheries, which is
responsible for marine and anadromous species. As the lead Federal agency for authorizing the
Projects, FERC is required to coordinate with the FWS and NOAA Fisheries to determine
whether federally listed endangered or threatened species or designated critical habitat are found
in the vicinity of the Projects, and to evaluate the potential effects of the proposed actions on
those species or critical habitat.
For actions involving major construction activities with the potential to affect listed
species or designated critical habitat, the FERC must report its findings to the FWS and NOAA
Fisheries in a Biological Assessment for those species that could be affected. If it is determined
that the proposed action is likely to adversely affect listed species or designated critical habitat,
the FERC is required to initiate formal consultation with the appropriate Federal agency.
In addition to Federal law, Virginia, North Carolina, and Pennsylvania have laws that
protect threatened and endangered and rare or sensitive species. West Virginia does not have
laws that protect State species; however all native mussels in the State are protected in
accordance with the West Virginia Mussel Survey Protocols (WVMSP). State/Commonwealth
laws for species protection are discussed in Section 3.7.3.
3.7.1 Federally Listed and Proposed Species
Atlantic and DTI reviewed the IPaC System to determine which federally listed species
could occur in the ACP Project area and SHP Project area. Atlantic and DTI additionally
coordinated with the FWS Ecological Services Field Offices (ESFO) in West Virginia, Virginia,
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North Carolina, and Pennsylvania to introduce the Projects and begin discussing potential
impacts on federally listed species and designated critical habitat.
For the ACP, Atlantic sent letters to the West Virginia, Virginia, and North Carolina
EFSOs and to NOAA Fisheries’ OPRs in August 2014 requesting early coordination and
technical assistance based on the species lists obtained through the IPaC System. These letters
requested verification of the species that could be impacted by the ACP Project as well as
direction on field survey protocols for species-specific surveys. For the SHP, DTI sent letters to
the West Virginia and Pennsylvania EFSOs requesting early coordination and technical
assistance in October 2014.
Atlantic and DTI requested and received NHI data from each State/Commonwealth
wildlife agency for a 2 mile-wide corridor centered on the proposed pipeline centerlines which
includes the locations of aboveground facilities. This data identifies occurrences of
State/Commonwealth-listed species as well as sensitive or significant habitats including parks,
forests, or nature preserves located along or adjacent to the proposed pipeline routes. For the
SHP, DTI additionally used the PDNI Project Environmental Review online system to identify
known locations of sensitive species, including federally listed species, in the vicinity of the
proposed facilities in Pennsylvania.
Based on information obtained through IPaC System, NHI, and agency consultations to
date, Atlantic and DTI have compiled a preliminary list of 33 federally listed species that
potentially occur within the ACP Project area and the SHP Project area. Lists of Federal species
are provided in Appendix 3B. Descriptions of each species, including life history, ecology, and
status of each species across its range, are provided in Section 3.7.1. Copies of correspondence
with agencies are provided in Appendices 1H (ACP) and 1I (SHP) of Resource Report 1.
Atlantic and DTI plan to prepare a draft Biological Assessment evaluating the potential
impacts of the Projects on federally listed species. Atlantic and DTI expect to file the draft
Biological Assessment with FERC in the Fall of 2015.
3.7.1.1 Species Managed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
Atlantic and DTI have consulted with the FWS to identify federally listed endangered,
threatened, and proposed species as potentially occurring in the ACP Project area and SHP
Project area. These species are described below.
Amphibians and Reptiles
Cheat Mountain Salamander
The Cheat Mountain salamander, which was federally listed as threatened in 1989, is
known only to occur in West Virginia. This salamander is a small woodland species reaching
lengths of approximately 4 inches. The salamander is black or dark brown with brassy or silvery
flecks above and uniformly dark gray beneath. Over 70 known sites for the Cheat Mountain
salamander occur in the mountain areas of Tucker, Grant, Randolph, Pendleton, and Pocahontas
Counties, including areas in the MNF (WVDNR, 2014f). Cheat Mountain salamander habitat
primarily consists of red spruce forests above elevations of 2,980 feet in microclimates with
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relatively high humidity (FWS, 2009; West Virginia FWS, 2014d). The species spends Winters
underground and then emerges once temperatures start to rise in Spring. The main threat to the
Cheat Mountain salamander is degradation of high-elevation red spruce and spruce/northern
hardwood forests (WVDNR, 2014f).
Based on preliminary desktop review of topographic and vegetation cover maps, the
proposed AP-1 mainline route crosses deciduous forests at elevations exceeding 2,980 feet in
Pocahontas and Randolph Counties in areas within and adjacent to the MNF. The nearest known
occurrence of Cheat Mountain salamander is located within 0.5 mile of the proposed route
approximately at MP 61.0, where the AP-1 mainline crosses Cheat Mountain and Back
Allegheny Mountain in the MNF.
Atlantic and DTI will utilize a qualified biological surveyor to review the proposed AP-1
mainline route; prepare a Cheat Mountain salamander survey plan for review by the FWS, USFS,
and WVDNR; and survey the proposed route in the Spring of 2015.
Birds
Red-cockaded Woodpecker
The red-cockaded woodpecker was listed as federally endangered in 1970. This small
black-and-white woodpecker’s distinguishing features include a black cap and nape that encircle
large white cheek patches. Historically, the red-cockaded woodpecker inhabited open pine
forests of the southeast, but current habitat differs in quality from historical pines in which the
species evolved (FWS, 2014e). Red- cockaded woodpecker has the potential to occur in mature
pine forests and has progressed in a landscape where frequent, low-intensity fires burned within
upland pine ecosystems. Longleaf pines are preferred; however, other species of southern pine
are also acceptable. Due to logging activities and fire suppression, fewer trees are allowed to
mature, creating a scarcity of pines suitable for red-cockaded woodpecker habitat. Fire
suppression has allowed a hardwood understory to invade on the species’ habitat (FWS, 2014e).
Foraging habitat consists of a pine or pine/hardwood stand of forest, woodland, or
savannah in which 50 percent or more of the dominant trees are pines and the dominant pine
trees are generally 30 years in age or older. Breeding habitat consists of pine, pine/hardwood,
and hardwood/pine stands that contain pines 60 years in age or older and that are located within
0.5 mile of suitable foraging habitat. It is preferable that the foraging habitat and breeding
habitat be contiguous. The red-cockaded woodpecker is the only woodpecker that excavates
cavities exclusively in live pine trees. Cavities are excavated in mature pines, generally over
80 years old. Red-cockaded woodpeckers live in groups with a breeding pair and as many as
four helpers. Each group needs approximately 200 acres of mature pine forest to support its
foraging and nesting habitat needs (FWS 2014e).
According to the IPaC System, the red-cockaded woodpecker has the potential to occur in
mature pine forests in the City of Suffolk, Virginia and in Johnston, Robeson, and Wilson
Counties, North Carolina. During a June 3, 2014 conference call between Atlantic and the
Virginia EFSO, FWS staff indicated that the red-cockaded woodpecker is only known to occur in
the Piney Grove Preserve in Sussex County, Virginia, which is located approximately 25 miles to
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the north of the proposed AP-3 mainline. NHI data from Virginia, however, identified known
locations of the red-cockaded woodpecker within 2 miles of the route in the City of Suffolk
(VDCR 2014a). NHI data from North Carolina identified 26 occurrences of red-cockaded
woodpecker within 2 miles of the AP-2 mainline route in Johnston, Robeson, and Wilson
Counties, including two occurrences within the 300-foot-wide study corridor along the proposed
route.
Atlantic’s biological survey crews documented potential foraging habitat for redcockaded woodpecker along the proposed AP-2 and AP-3 routes during environmental field
surveys completed in the Summer and Fall of 2014. Based on the results of these habitat
surveys, agency communications, and review of IPaC System and NHI data, Atlantic prepared a
study plan which was provided to the NCWRC, and North Carolina and Virginia ESFO for
review.
Aerial surveys were conducted in March 2015 during leaf off conditions for red-cockaded
woodpecker nesting cavity trees within 0.5 mile of foraging habitat as identified during
biological field surveys or as requested by agencies. A report describing the methods and results
of these surveys is currently being prepared and will be provided to the agencies for review.
Wood Stork
The wood stork was federally listed as endangered in 1984 and reclassified as threatened
in 2014. This colonial water bird roosts and forages in association with freshwater and estuarine
wetlands, primarily nesting in cypress or mangrove swamps. It feeds in freshwater marshes,
narrow tidal creeks, or flooded tidal pools. The species may have formerly bred in most of the
southeastern United States and Texas, but the current population of nesting adult birds has been
limited to Florida, Georgia, and South Carolina. After breeding, wood stork populations are
known to move as far north as North Carolina and into Alabama and Mississippi (FWS, 2014f).
The wood stork has the potential to occur year round along or near the proposed AP-2
mainline route in Sampson County, North Carolina; however, NHI data does not indicate any
occurrences of wood stork within 2 miles of the proposed ACP Project area.
Atlantic has initiated consultation with the North Carolina ESFO regarding the need to
conduct surveys for this species. Additional information regarding the results of those consultations
will be included in the final Resource Report 3.
Crustaceans
Madison Cave Isopod
The Madison cave isopod, which was federally listed as threatened in 1982, is an eyeless,
un-pigmented, freshwater crustacean. The species is endemic to underground karst aquifer
habitats of the Shenandoah Valley in Virginia. The habitat for Madison cave isopod is connected
to the surface through conduits, including caves and open-throat sinkholes, which drain surface
water into the aquifer. A population center of Madison cave isopod is known to occur in
Augusta County, Virginia. NHI data from Virginia did not identify known locations of the
species within the 2-mile buffer of the proposed AP-1 mainline route (VDCR, 2014b). However,
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the route crosses a Madison cave isopod priority area in Augusta County as identified in the
FWS’s Virginia Ecological Services Strategic Plan (FWS, 2012a).
As discussed in Section 6.4 of Resource Report 6, a survey to document karst features
along the proposed AP-1 route is ongoing. The results of this survey will be used to assess the
potential for the ACP to affect Madison cave isopod in Virginia.
Fish
Cape Fear Shiner
The Cape Fear shiner was federally listed as endangered in 1987. It is endemic to the
Cape Fear River drainage in North Carolina. Cape Fear shiners generally are found in small- to
medium-sized rivers. Adults are found in slow pools, riffles, and deep pools, while juveniles
occupy areas near outcrops and flooded areas. Suitable substrates are generally made up of
gravel, cobble, and boulder. Primary threats to the Cape Fear shiner are habitat loss and
degradation from changes to water flows and pollutants (FWS, 2006a). The AP-2 mainline route
crosses the Cape Fear River drainage in Sampson and Cumberland Counties. A desktop review
to determine locations of suitable habitat is currently being completed.
Atlantic has initiated consultation with the North Carolina ESFO regarding the need to
conduct surveys for this species. Additional information regarding the results of those consultations
will be included in the final Resource Report 3.
Roanoke Logperch
The Roanoke logperch, which was federally listed as endangered in 1989, is a freshwater
fish that occupies clean, clear, and moderate to large warm‐water streams and rivers. The fish
are found in the Nottoway, Pigg, Otter, Roanoke, and Smith watersheds in Virginia (FWS
2014g). The Nottoway and Roanoke watersheds are crossed by the AP-1 and AP-3 mainline.
Roanoke logperch inhabit riffle‐run‐pool areas and substrata made of mostly gravel and rubble.
Adult males are generally found in shallow riffles; adult females in deep runs with gravel and
small cobble bottoms; and young in slow runs and pools with clean sand bottoms. Threats to the
Roanoke logperch include lower water quality due to agricultural activities and habitat loss due
to impoundments (NCWRC, 2014g).
According to the IPaC System, the Roanoke logperch has the potential to occur in
waterbodies in the following six Counties in Virginia crossed by the proposed AP-1 mainline
route: Brunswick, Dinwiddie, Greensville, Nottoway, Prince Edward, and Southampton. NHI
data did not identify known locations of the Roanoke logperch within 2 miles of the proposed
route (VDCR, 2014a); however, the AP-1 mainline crosses a Roanoke logperch priority area
identified in the Virginia Ecological Services Strategic Plan in Dinwiddie, Nottoway, and
Brunswick Counties (FWS, 2012a). Based on review of watershed data, the AP-1 mainline
crosses TBD waterbodies containing potentially suitable habitat for the logperch in the Roanoke
River watershed and TBD waterbodies containing potentially suitable habitat for the logperch in
the Chowan-Roanoke watershed where the Roanoke logperch is listed.
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A study plan detailing the waterbodies planned for survey will be provided to the
Virginia ESFO for review in the Spring of 2015. Field surveys are expected to be completed in
the Summer of 2015.
Insects
Monarch Butterfly
On December 29, 2014 the FWS initiated a status review under the ESA for the monarch
butterfly prompted by a petition from interest groups. The status review requires a 60-day
comment period, which ended on March 2, 2015. This is followed by a one year status review.
At the end of that period, a listing proposal is published in the Federal register if listing may be
warranted. If the species is proposed for listing under the ESA it will be addressed at that time.
Saint Francis' Satyr Butterfly
The Saint Francis’ Satyr butterfly is a federally endangered, subspecies of N. mitchellii
that was listed in 1994. The butterfly lives in wet meadows with wetlands and sedges. It has
been found around pitcher plants, cane, and rough-leaved loosestrife (also federally listed, see
below). This species is only known to occur in Hoke and Cumberland Counties in North
Carolina (FWS, 2012b). The Saint Francis’ Satyr butterfly is endangered due to habitat loss
from human activities. There has also been a decline due to loss of beaver populations, which
once provided flooded meadows, and fire suppression (FWS, 2012b).
The only known occurrences of the Saint Francis’ Satyr butterfly are within the Fort
Bragg military installation, which is located approximately 7.3 miles to the west of the proposed
AP-2 mainline route near MP 430.0; however, there is potential for the species to occur in
suitable habitat in other areas. NHI data did not identify any occurrences of the species within
2 miles of the route.
Atlantic has initiated consultation with the North Carolina ESFO regarding the need to
conduct surveys for this species. Additional information regarding the results of those
consultations will be included in the final Resource Report 3.
Mammals
There are three federally listed or proposed bat species with the potential to occur in the
ACP Project area and SHP Project area: Indiana bat, northern long-eared bat, and Virginia bigeared bat. In addition to these species West Virginia ESFO asked Atlantic and DTI to include
the little brown bat in assessments for the Projects. Atlantic and DTI will complete surveys for
these species as discussed below if suitable habitat is identified during field review of the
proposed pipeline routes.
Indiana Bat
The Indiana bat was first listed as endangered in 1967. Since that time, populations have
declined by nearly 56 percent (FWS, 2014h). Population declines leading to listing were caused
primarily by loss and degradation of suitable hibernacula, human disturbance during hibernation,
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and loss and degradation of forested habitat. More recently, white-nose syndrome (WNS), a
fungal pathogen, has caused serious declines in bat populations, including Indiana bats, in the
northeastern United States. The abundance of Indiana bats in the northeast has declined to
almost half of the 2001 population levels due to the effects of WNS.
The Indiana bat is a temperate, insectivorous, migratory bat that hibernates in caves and
mines in the Winter, and spends the Summer in wooded areas. Most populations leave their
hibernacula by late April. After emerging, bats move to forested habitats for the Summers.
Females arrive in Summer habitat as early as April 1. Temporary roosts are often used during
Spring until a maternity roost with large numbers of adult females is established. Female Indiana
bats exhibit strong site fidelity to Summer roosting and foraging areas. Most documented
maternity colonies have 50 to 100 adult bats (FWS, 2007b).
Indiana bats roost in dead or live trees and snags with peeling or exfoliating bark, split
trunks, or cavities, and in live trees with exfoliating bark that are 5 inches in diameter (such as
shagbark hickory). Indiana bats use stream corridors, riparian areas, and upland woodlots for
roosting, foraging, and as travel corridors.
The federally endangered Indiana bat is listed as potentially occurring in all Counties
crossed by the ACP pipelines in West Virginia and in Highland, Augusta, and Cumberland
Counties, Virginia. According to a map published by the FWS, the Distribution of Federally
Listed Threatened and Endangered Species and Proposed Species in West Virginia (FWS,
2012c), multiple Indiana bat hibernacula protection areas are crossed by the ACP in Pocahontas
and Randolph Counties. The West Virginia EFSO of the FWS confirmed known occurrences of
Indiana bat in Harrison, Lewis, Pocahontas, Randolph, and Upshur Counties, West Virginia in a
letter dated December 9, 2014 (FWS, 2014d).
For the SHP, Indiana bat is listed as occurring in Westmoreland and Greene Counties,
Pennsylvania, and in all Counties in West Virginia. Known Indiana bat maternity activity is
documented in Wetzel County (FWS, 2013a). No documented Indiana bat hibernacula
protection areas occur within the SHP Project area; however undocumented bat hibernacula and
Summer roosting and foraging habitat may exist along the pipeline route in West Virginia (FWS,
2012c).
In Pennsylvania, known Indiana bat maternity colonies and/or male capture sites are
documented in Greene County based on review of the Federally Listed, Proposed, and Candidate
Species in Pennsylvania (FWS, 2014i). Based on this same reference, no known hibernacula are
located in the Counties crossed by the SHP, but undocumented hibernacula and Summer roosting
and foraging habitat may be found.
During environmental field surveys for the Projects, Atlantic and DTI searched for
potential hibernacula within a 300-foot-wide survey corridor centered on the proposed routes,
and three potential hibernacula were identified. Atlantic and DTI will utilize a qualified bat
surveyor to conduct field reviews of these potential portal features in the Spring of 2015. The
review will help determine if Spring trapping surveys are needed at individual sites. If needed,
trapping surveys will be completed between the Spring and Summer of 2015 in accordance with
the Protocol for Assessing Bat Use of Potential Hibernacula (FWS 2014j).
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Atlantic and DTI will develop a bat survey plan for the Indiana bat, northern long-eared
bat, and Virginia big-eared bat species. This plan will also include the little brown bat in West
Virginia. The bat survey plan will describe Indiana bat survey methods in accordance with the
2014 Range-wide Indiana Bat Summer Survey Guidelines. The level of effort of these surveys
will be determined by the amount of suitable Summer habitat present along the proposed routes
and direction from the FWS EFSOs in West Virginia and Virginia. Atlantic and DTI anticipate
filing the bat survey plan with the FWS EFSOs in West Virginia and Virginia in the Spring of
2015.
Atlantic has initiated consultation with the FWS regarding the scope of surveys for this
species. Additional information regarding the results of those consultations will be included in
the final Resource Report 3.
Northern Long-eared Bat
In October 2013, the northern long-eared bat was proposed for Federal listing as
endangered throughout its range, which includes all of the Counties/Cities crossed by the ACP
Project area and SHP Project area in West Virginia, Virginia, North Carolina, and Pennsylvania.
In January 2015, the FWS proposed a special rule under Section 4(d) of the ESA to focus
protections for the northern long-eared bat. On April 4, 2015, the FWS listed the northern longeared bat as threatened. Concurrent with the listing determination the FWS extended the
comment period for the 4(d) rule through July 1, 2015. As drafted, the 4(d) rule would exempt
many right-of-way maintenance and expansion activities from the need to consult with the FWS.
The final decision on the 4(d) rule is expected in July 2015.
The northern long-eared bat is a short migratory species with a distribution from the
eastern United States and Canada to western Montana and up to the southern Northwest
Territories and eastern British Columbia in Canada (FWS, 2013b). The species predominantly
overwinters in large caves and abandoned mines with stable temperatures and high humidity
(FWS, 2014k). Northern long-eared bats arrive at hibernacula in August or September; enter
into hibernation by October or November; and leave the hibernacula by March or April (FWS,
2014k; Whitaker and Hamilton, 1998).
During the Summer, the northern long-eared bat is associated with forested habitat in
proximity to wetlands (Foster and Kurta, 1999). Northern long-eared bats often roost alone or in
colonies. Day roosts are found in buildings, towers, hollow trees, beneath loose bark of trees, in
crevices in cliffs, and beneath bridges, while caves are used as night roosts (FWS, 2014k;
NatureServe, 2014; Carter and Feldhamer, 2005; Sasse and Perkins, 1996). Breeding begins in
late July in northern ranges and early October for southern ranges of the species. Foraging
behavior is diverse. Diet includes moths, flies, leafhoppers, caddisflies, and beetles species.
Population declines are believed to have been caused primarily by WNS. Human disturbance to
Summer habitat and the loss of suitable hibernacula are factors that also limit the species’ ability
to persist while experiencing dramatic population declines from WNS (FWS, 2014k).
The West Virginia EFSO confirmed known occurrences of the northern long-eared bat in
Harrison, Lewis, Pocahontas, Randolph, and Upshur Counties in a letter to Atlantic dated
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December 9, 2014 (FWS, 2014d). Dominion and DTI have not yet received location data for the
northern long-eared bat from the Virginia, North Carolina, and Pennsylvania ESFOs.
As noted above, Atlantic and DTI will develop a bat survey plan that details bat survey
methods in accordance with the Northern Long-eared Bat Interim Conference and Planning
Guidance issued by the FWS in January 2014 (FWS, 2014l). These surveys will be based on the
amount of suitable Summer habitat present along the route and direction from the FWS EFSOs
in West Virginia, Virginia, North Carolina, and Pennsylvania. Atlantic and DTI anticipate filing
the bat survey plan with the FWS in the Spring of 2015.
Atlantic has initiated consultation with the FWS regarding the scope of surveys for this
species. Additional information regarding the results of those consultations will be included in
the final Resource Report 3.
Virginia Big-eared Bat
The Virginia big-eared bat was federally listed as endangered in 1979 due to its small
population size, limited distribution, and vulnerability to human disturbance. It is a mediumsized bat with large ears that occupies caves in karst regions dominated by oak-hickory or beechmaple-hemlock forest (FWS, 1984). Virginia big-eared bats usually hibernate during Winter in
tight clusters near cave entrances that are well ventilated and where temperatures range from
32 degrees Fahrenheit (°F) to 54 ºF. In the Summer, maternity colonies are found in the
relatively warm parts of limestone caves (FWS, 1984). Pups are born in May or June. The
species primarily feeds on moths over pastures, agricultural fields, and near the crowns of trees
(VDGIF, 2015c). In the ACP Project area, the Virginia big-eared bat is known to occur in
Randolph County, West Virginia and Highland County, Virginia. This species is not known to occur
in the SHP Project area.
As noted above, Atlantic and DTI will develop a bat survey plan which details bat survey
methods for this species. The level of effort of the surveys will be based on the amount of
suitable habitat present along the route and with direction from the EFSOs in West Virginia and
Virginia. Atlantic and DTI anticipate filing the bat survey plan with the FWS in the Spring of
2015.
Atlantic has initiated consultation with the FWS regarding the scope of surveys for this
species. Additional information regarding the results of those consultations will be included in
the final Resource Report 3.
Little Brown Bat
The little brown bat is not federally listed under the ESA. In a letter to Atlantic, however,
the West Virginia ESFO said the bat is being considered for listing and requested that Atlantic
include the species in its planning for field surveys (FWS, 2014d). Atlantic has agreed to this
request. Little brown bats utilize caves for hibernacula in the Winter. They can also be found in
human structures. The little brown bat can be found in large clusters of as many as 100,000
individuals at one hibernacula site. Summer roosts for the little brown bat are similar to other bat
species; they use tree cavities and human structures such as barns and attics. Similarly to the
northern long-eared bat, the little brown bat is opportunistic in selecting Summer habitats.
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Population numbers of the species have dramatically declined due to WNS (Kunz and Reichard,
2010).
Atlantic and DTI will include little brown bat in the bat survey plan. Atlantic has
initiated consultation with the FWS regarding the scope of surveys for this species. Additional
information regarding the results of those consultations will be included in the final Resource
Report 3.
Freshwater Mussels
There are five federally listed mussel species with the potential to occur in the ACP
Project area and SHP Project area: dwarf wedge mussel, James spinymussel, clubshell mussel,
snuffbox mussel, and Tar River spinymussel. Atlantic and DTI will complete surveys for these
species as discussed below if suitable habitat is identified during field review of waterbody
crossings along the proposed pipeline routes. The locations of potentially suitable habitat for
each of these mussel species is currently being reviewed by a qualified malacologist.
In West Virginia, mussel surveys will be completed in accordance with the WVMSP.
The protocol classifies streams into four groups based on the size of the stream and whether or
not federally listed mussels are expected to occur. The proposed AP-1 mainline route crosses the
West Fork River, which is listed as a Group 2 stream. Streams in this group are small to midsized and where federally listed species are known to occur. Occupancy surveys for mussels in
the West Fork River are expected to be completed in the Spring of 2015.
There are two federally listed mussel species with the potential to occur in the SHP
Project area: clubshell mussel and snuffbox mussel. At least one or both of these species have
potential to occur in four streams crossed by the proposed TL-635 pipeline loop, including
Indian Creek, McElroy Creek, Meathouse Fork, and Buckeye Creek.
The FWS and VDGIF DRAFT Freshwater Mussel Survey Guidelines for Virginia will be
implemented in Virginia. In accordance with this document, habitat assessments will be
completed for stream crossings along the proposed pipeline routes with watersheds greater than
5 square miles upstream from the crossing location. Habitat assessments also will be completed
at 17 stream crossings identified through review of NHI data and agency consultation that are
known to contain protected freshwater mussels, indicator prey species, and/or federally listed
species. Occupancy surveys for streams determined to contain suitable habitat and streams that
are known to contain federally listed species will be completed in the Spring of 2015.
Based on consultation with the North Carolina EFSO, habitat mapping and occupancy
surveys will be necessary in streams known to contain federally listed mussels. Based on
correspondence with the NCWRC, the presence of listed mussels can be assumed at some
locations. The Tar River spinymussel can be assumed to be present at the Fishing Creek, Swift
Creek, and Tar River crossings. All streams that are 2nd order or larger in the Tar and Neuse
basins potentially have dwarf wedgemussel in addition to other rare mussel species. Surveys for
these species are expected to be completed in the Spring of 2015.
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Dwarf Wedgemussel
The dwarf wedgemussel is a federally endangered freshwater mussel that was listed in
1990. The mussel is typically found in shallow to deep quick running water on cobble, fine
gravel, or on firm silt or sandy bottoms. It will also occupy areas with submerged aquatic plants,
and near stream banks underneath overhanging tree limbs. The species commonly lives on
muddy sand, sand, and gravel bottoms in creeks and rivers of various sizes. It requires areas of
slow to moderate current, good water quality, and little silt deposits (FWS, 1993; FWS,
2014m). Threats to the species include point sources of pollution, non-point chemical pollution,
sedimentation from agriculture, discharge rate modifications, and landfill construction near
occupied waterbodies (FWS, 1993).
The dwarf wedgemussel is known or has the potential to occur in perennial waterbodies
in the Nottoway River drainage in Virginia, which includes Brunswick, Dinwiddie, and
Nottoway Counties. NHI data from Virginia identified known locations of the mussel in
perennial waterbodies crossed by the proposed AP-1 mainline route; however, none of these are
within the 300-foot-wide study corridor for the ACP (VDCR, 2014c). In North Carolina, the
dwarf wedgemussel is known to occur within the Tar and Neuse basins which include Nash,
Johnston, and Wilson Counties. NHI data from North Carolina identified 13 known locations of
the mussel along the proposed AP-2 mainline route (NCDENR, 2014b).
James Spinymussel
The James spinymussel was federally listed as endangered in 1988. It is a small
freshwater mussel slightly less than 3inches in length (FWS, 2014n). The mussel lives in
streams with slow to moderate water current with clean sand and cobble bottom sediments. This
mussel is limited to unpolluted water and is susceptible to competition from exotic clam species
when its habitat is disturbed (FWS 1990a). The species has declined rapidly during the past two
decades due to habitat loss and modification, and now exists only in small, headwater tributaries
of the upper James River basin, which includes Highland, Augusta, Nelson, and Buckingham
Counties, Virginia. Threats to the species include siltation, invasion of exotic species, water
pollution, stream channelization, impoundment of waterways, and sewage discharge, as well as
agricultural, logging, and road activities (FWS, 2014n).
The proposed AP-1 mainline crosses the James River along the Buckingham/Nelson
County line, as well as other waterbodies within the James River basin in Nelson, Buckingham,
and Cumberland Counties. Additionally, NHI data from Virginia identified known locations of
the mussel within the 2 miles of the proposed AP-1 mainline route in Highland County, but none
of these are crossed (VDCR, 2014c).
Clubshell
The clubshell was federally listed as endangered in 1989. Considered an upper Ohio
River system species, the mussel is currently found within 12 waterbodies throughout its historic
range (FWS, 1994). Population declines of the species have been attributed to pollution caused
by agricultural run-off, industrial wastes, and the establishment of impoundments for navigation.
Current threats to the clubshell also include colonization by the non-native and invasive species,
the zebra mussel (FWS, 1994). Sensitive to disturbance, the clubshell inhabits areas with low
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turbidity in medium to small waterbodies with loose sand or gravel substrate, often below riffles
(FWS, 1994). The species typically burrows itself completely in the substrate relying on water
to percolate through the course sand particles. The only waterbody crossed by the ACP in which
the clubshell has the potential to occur in is the West Fork River, which is crossed by the proposed
AP-1 mainline near MP 7.9 in Upshur County, West Virginia.
Snuffbox
The snuffbox was federally listed as endangered in 2012. With a few exceptions,
populations are highly fragmented and restricted to short reaches within 79 streams and lakes.
The snuffbox is generally found in a variety of waters including small to medium creeks, large
rivers with swift currents and along wave swept lakes (FWS, 2012d). They burrow deep in sand,
gravel, or cobble substrates and come to the surface when spawning or attracting a host (FWS,
2012d). The only waterbody along the ACP in which the snuffbox has the potential to occur is the
West Fork River, which is crossed by the proposed AP-1 mainline near MP 7.9 in Upshur County,
West Virginia.
Tar River Spinymussel
The Tar River spinymussel was federally listed as endangered in 1985. It is one of three
freshwater mussels with spines in the world. The mussel lives in relatively silt-free riffle and run
habitat in un-compacted gravel and/or coarse sand in fast-flowing, well-oxygenated streams.
The mussel is endemic to the Tar River and Neuse River in North Carolina. Primary threats to
the mussel are sedimentation, bank instability, and loss of in-stream habitat (FWS, 2014o).
The Tar River spinymussel is known or has the potential to occur in perennial waterbodies
crossed by the proposed AP-2 mainline in Halifax, Johnston, and Nash Counties, North Carolina.
Based on review of topographic maps and watershed boundaries, the proposed route crosses the
Tar River, Fishing Creek, and Swift Creek in the Tar River systems and the Little River in the
Neuse River system. NHI data from North Carolina identified four known locations of the mussel
along the proposed route in Nash County (NCDENR, 2014b).
Plants
Twelve federally listed plant species have the potential to occur in the ACP Project area.
Atlantic is planning to conduct surveys for these species in areas containing potentially suitable
habitat as identified by qualified botanists approved by the FWS for each species. Analyses of
potentially suitable habitat are ongoing. Survey windows vary for each species based primarily
on flowering times or other times of year when the plant is most readily apparent (see
Table 3.7.1-1).
American Chaffseed
The American chaffseed, which is a federally endangered perennial herb, was listed in
1992 (FWS, 2012e). The plant occurs in acidic, sandy, and seasonally moist to dry soils. The
plant also lives in peat wetlands, moist pine flatwoods, and fire-maintained savannas.
Populations of the species are found in North Carolina, Virginia, South Carolina, Georgia,
Florida, and New Jersey (FWS, 2012e). Threats to American chaffseed include fire suppression,
destruction of habitats, and unmanaged habitats (FWS, 2012e).
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TABLE 3.7.1-1
Federally Listed Plant Survey Timing Windows
Status a
Potential Occurrences
in the Project Area
Survey Timing Window
American Chaffseed
(Schwalba americana)
E
Virginia, North Carolina
May to August
Eastern Prairie Fringed Orchid
(Platanthera leucophaea)
T
Virginia
June 15 to July 15
Michaux’s Sumac
(Rhus michauxii)
E
Virginia, North Carolina
May 1 to October 31
Northeastern Bulrush
(Scirpus ancistrochaetus)
E
Virginia
July 1 to September 30
Pondberry
(Lindera melissifolia)
E
North Carolina
February to March (flowering)
September–October (fruiting)
Rough-leaved Loosestrife
(Lysimachia asperulifolia)
E
North Carolina
Mid-May to June
Running Buffalo Clover
(Trifolium stoloniferum)
E
West Virginia
Mid-April to July
Shale Barren Rock Cress
(Boechera serotina)
E
Virginia
July 15 to October 15
Small Whorled Pogonia
(Isotria medeoloides)
T
West Virginia
June 1 to July 20
Swamp Pink
(Helonias bullata)
T
Virginia
April 15 to May 31 (flowering/fruiting)
June 1 to September 30 (basal leaves present)
Virginia Sneezeweed
(Helenium virginicum)
T
Virginia
July 15 to October 15
Virginia Spirea
(Spiraea virginiana)
T
West Virginia
May 1 to September 30
Species
____________________
a
E – Endangered, T – Threatened
American chaffseed has the potential to occur along the proposed AP-2 mainline route in
Cumberland County, North Carolina. Based on review of the Federal Recovery Plan for this
species, extant occurrences in Cumberland County are associated with impact zone activities on
Fort Bragg, which is located approximately 7 miles west of the proposed route.
Eastern Prairie Fringed Orchid
The eastern prairie fringed orchid is a federally threatened perennial herb that was listed
in 1989 (FWS, 2014p). The plant occurs in diverse habitats ranging from prairie to wetlands.
The wetlands are typically marsh edges, bogs, and sedge meadows. The plants require full
sunlight, grassy areas, and little to no woody areas. There are populations in Virginia, Ohio,
Illinois, New York, Indiana, Iowa, Maine, Michigan, and Wisconsin (FWS, 2014p). The eastern
prairie fringed orchid is threatened largely because of habitat loss for agricultural purposes and
the development of wetlands (FWS, 2014p).
The occurrence of eastern prairie fringed orchid in Augusta County, Virginia is an extant
population record in a sedge meadow maintained by grazing (FWS, 2012a). Plants at this site
have not been documented since the 1980s. NHI data from Virginia did not identify known
locations of the eastern prairie fringed orchid within 2 miles of the proposed AP-1 mainline route
(VDCR, 2014c).
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Michaux's Sumac
Michaux’s sumac is a federally endangered shrub that was listed in 1989 in the Southeast
Region of FWS (FWS, 2012f). The plant occurs naturally in rocky and sandy open woods. The
plant has also been found along North Carolina highway rights-of-way. The species is found in
the piedmonts and coastal plains of Virginia, North Carolina, Florida, Georgia, and South
Carolina (FWS, 2012f). Michaux’s sumac is endangered mostly due to its low success of
reproduction. Other threats include fire suppression and habitat destruction from development
(FWS, 2012f).
Michaux’s sumac has the potential to occur along or near the proposed AP-1 mainline
route in Brunswick, Dinwiddie, and Nottoway Counties, Virginia, and the proposed AP-2
mainline route in Cumberland, Johnson, Nash, Robeson, and Wilson Counties, North Carolina.
NHI data did not identify known locations of the Michaux’s sumac within 2 miles of the routes.
Northeastern Bulrush
The Northeastern bulrush is a federally endangered tall sedge that was listed in 1991 in
the Northeast Region of the FWS (PA NHP, 2014a). The plant occurs in ponds, wetlands, wet
depressions, and seasonal pools. There are only 50 to 60 populations in existence in the United
States, which are located in Virginia, West Virginia, Maryland, New Hampshire, Vermont, and
Massachusetts (FWS, 2006b). The Northeastern bulrush is endangered due to habitat loss from
road construction and off-road vehicles. Other threats include dredging and upland runoff (FWS,
2006b). The Northeastern bulrush has the potential to occur in wetland habitats crossed by the
proposed AP-1 mainline in Augusta County, Virginia. However, National Hydrography Database
data from Virginia did not identify known locations of the species within 2 miles of the route (VDCR,
2014c).
Pondberry
Pondberry is a federally endangered deciduous shrub that was listed in 1986 (FWS,
2012g). The plant occurs in shaded wetlands (e.g., hardwoods and bottomlands). The plant is
also found in ponds, depressions, and sinks. Populations of the species occur in North Carolina,
Missouri, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, South Carolina, and Arkansas. The populations in
North Carolina are mostly found in Cumberland and Sampson Counties (FWS, 2012g).
Pondberry is endangered due to animal grazing, particularly hogs and cattle, forest harvesting,
and drainage ditching (FWS, 2012g). Pondberry has the potential to occur in wetland habitats along
the proposed AP-2 mainline route in Cumberland and Sampson Counties, North Carolina.
Rough-leaved Loosestrife
The rough-leaved loosestrife is a federally endangered perennial herb that was listed in
1987 (FWS, 2012h). The plant occurs between uplands and dense vine/shrub growth on wet peat
soil. It can also occur in organic soils and relatively moist sands. The rough-leaved loosestrife is
endangered due to human activities, such as development, wetland drainage, and fire suppression
(FWS, 2012h). Rough-leaved loosestrife can also be found along power line right-of-ways and
roadsides.
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Populations of rough-leaved loosestrife occur in North Carolina and South Carolina.
Rough-leaved loosestrife has the potential to occur along or near the proposed AP-2 mainline
route in Cumberland County, North Carolina.
Running Buffalo Clover
Running buffalo clover was federally listed as endangered in 1987 (FWS, 2014q). The
species occurs in two fairly distinct habitat types: shaded lawn and mesic forest. Lawn
populations include cemeteries, parks, and old home sites. Mesic forest populations are often
associated with streams and trails. Forest populations require open areas where the clover is
exposed to indirect sunlight (FWS, 2007c). Running buffalo clover flowers from mid-April to
June, and fruiting occurs from May to July (FWS, 2007c). The primary threat to running buffalo
clover is habitat alteration. Factors that contribute to this threat include natural forest succession
and subsequent canopy closure, competition by invasive plant species, and permanent habitat
loss through development or road construction, and may include the elimination of disturbance
by bison and other large herbivores (FWS, 2007c).
Populations of running buffalo clover occur in West Virginia and Virginia. Based on
correspondence with the West Virginia ESFO, there are known occurrences of the species within
2 miles of the proposed AP-1 mainline in Pocahontas County, West Virginia. No known
occurrences occur within 2 miles of the ACP Project area in Virginia.
Shale Barren Rock Cress
The shale barren rock cress is a federally endangered biennial plant that was listed in
1989 (FWS, 2014r). There are less than 20 individuals left in the wild (FWS, 2014r). The plant
occurs in areas of open stunted pine and red cedar, and also in eroded slopes along streams.
Typically the plant is found at elevations between 1,099 and 2,495 feet above sea level with dry
and hot temperatures and where there is little vegetation cover and low moisture. Shale barren
rock cress is only found in West Virginia and Virginia in the Appalachian Mountains. The
species is endangered due to habitat loss from railroad, dam, and road construction and overcollection. The plant has also been overgrazed by deer, sheep, and goats, and is susceptible to
fungal blight, drought, and pesticides (FWS, 2014r). Based on review of the Federal Recovery
Plan, extant occurrences of shale barren rock cress have been reported in GWNF in West
Virginia and Virginia.
Small Whorled Pogonia
The small whorled pogonia is a federally threatened terrestrial orchid that was listed in
1982 (FWS, 2014s). The plant occurs in old hickory, oak, beech, birch, and maple hardwood
stands. The plant exists in acidic soils with organic matter on the slopes of smaller streams.
Small whorled pogonia populations occur throughout the Northeast, Southeast, and Midwest of
the United States, including West Virginia, Virginia, and North Carolina. The remaining
populations typically have less than 20 plants each (FWS, 2014s). The species is endangered
due to urban sprawl, forestry, and recreational activities.
The small whorled pogonia has the potential to occur in upland forest habitats crossed by
the proposed AP-1 mainline route in Randolph County, West Virginia and Buckingham County,
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Virginia (FWS 2014d). NHI data did not identify known locations of the species within 2 miles
of the route (VDCR, 2014c).
Swamp Pink
Swamp pink is a federally threatened perennial evergreen herb that was listed in1988.
The plant is an obligate wetlands species that lives in forested wetlands, including swamps, along
streams. The plant also occurs in spring seepage areas and headwater wetlands. Habitat for the
species must have a water table that is close to the surface, lateral ground water movement, and
20 to 100 percent canopy closure. Populations of the species have been found from New York to
the southern Appalachian Mountains, including West Virginia, Virginia, and North Carolina.
Populations have also been found in the western region of the Blue Ridge Mountains in the
Shenandoah Valley and in New Jersey (VDCR NHP, 2014e). Swamp pink is threatened due to
pollution from runoff into wetlands, invasive species, changes in groundwater and surface water,
construction, and stormwater discharge (VDCR NHP, 2014e).
Swamp pink has the potential to occur in perennial wetland habitats along the proposed
AP-1 mainline route in Augusta and Nelson Counties, Virginia, but NHI data did not identify
known locations of the species within 2 miles of the route (VDCR, 2014c).
Virginia Sneezeweed
Virginia sneezeweed is a federally threatened perennial herb that was listed in 1998. The
plant occurs in wetlands and along the shores of seasonally flooded ponds. The ponds are
typically acidic and poorly drained, and the soils are silty loam. Populations of Virginia
sneezeweed occur in the Ozark Highlands of Missouri and the west part of the Blue Ridge
Mountains of Virginia. There are less than 30 known sites left of Virginia sneezeweed in the
United States (U.S. GPO, 1998; FWS, 2010; VDCR NHP, 2014f). The species is threatened due
to erosion, flooding, toxic runoff, drainage, development, and dredging (VDCR NHP, 2014f).
Virginia sneezeweed has the potential to occur along the proposed AP-1 mainline route in
Augusta County, Virginia, but NHI data did not identify known locations of the species within
2 miles of the route (VDCR, 2014c).
Virginia Spiraea
Virginia spiraea was listed as a federally threatened shrub in 1990. The plant is found
along streams and rivers in areas with periodic disturbances, such as high-velocity scouring
floods, which eliminate competition from other woody vegetation. There are isolated
populations of the plant in the Appalachian Plateaus and southern Blue Ridge Mountains in West
Virginia, Virginia, and North Carolina. The populations mostly occur in a few aggregates (FWS,
2012i; FWS, 2014t). Threats to the Virginia spiraea include road construction, poorly managed
recreational river corridors, changes in water flow patterns, and industry (FWS, 2012i; FWS,
2014t).
Virginia spiraea has the potential to occur in the ACP Project area along waterbodies and
riparian areas with sandy, silty, or clay soils at elevations between 1,000 and 2,400 feet above
sea level in West Virginia and Virginia. NHI data from Virginia did not identify known
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locations of the species within 2 miles of the proposed routes, and the Virginia ESFO did not
recommend surveys for this species. In correspondence with Atlantic, the West Virginia ESFO
of the FWS recommended surveys for the species in suitable habitat (VDCR NHP, 2014a; FWS,
2014d).
3.7.1.2 Species under NOAA Fisheries Jurisdiction
Review of available data and consultation with NOAA Fisheries identified two federally
listed fish species and five sea turtles with the potential to occur in the ACP Project area in
Virginia and North Carolina. No federally listed species managed by NOAA Fisheries occur in
the ACP Project area in West Virginia or the SHP Project area in West Virginia and
Pennsylvania. Marine mammals protected under the MMPA are discussed in Section 3.6. No
federally listed marine mammals are expected to occur in the ACP Project area.
Fish
Atlantic Sturgeon
The Atlantic sturgeon is known to occur along the eastern coast of the United States in
32 rivers as one of five distinct population segments (DPS) of the species (i.e., New York Bight,
Chesapeake Bay, Carolina, South Atlantic, or Gulf of Maine). Four of the DPS are federally
endangered, and one, the Gulf of Main DPS, is threatened. Atlantic sturgeon is a long-lived,
estuarine dependent, anadromous fish species. They spawn in moderately flowing water in deep
parts of large freshwater rivers in the Spring and early Summer. When not spawning, sub-adults
and adults live in coastal marine waters and estuaries, which is where they spend most of their
lives. Juveniles usually reside in estuarine waters for months to years.
Based on consultation with the Northeast Region of NOAA Fisheries, the City of
Chesapeake, Virginia, is the only location in the ACP Project area where Atlantic sturgeon may
be present. The proposed AP-3 lateral crosses the East Ditch (MP 67.2), Deep Creek Canal
(MP 75.3), and Southern Branch Elizabeth River (77.3), each of which may contain Atlantic
sturgeon from any one of the five DPS (NOAA, 2014j). The species also occurs in James River,
which is crossed by the AP-1 mainline route in Nelson and Buckingham Counties; however, the
crossing is upstream of the Bosher Dam, which does not provide passage for the fish.
Atlantic sturgeon was once found throughout the Chesapeake Bay and its freshwater
rivers, but is now very rare. Within the Chesapeake Bay Region, Atlantic sturgeon travel
through the Bay in April-May on its way to freshwater spawning areas in the James and York
Rivers, and again in autumn when it leaves the Bay for coastal ocean waters. The fish spend
most of their lives in the ocean, living at the bottom of freshwater rivers while in the Chesapeake
Bay region (Chesapeake Bay Program, 2014). Based on information provided by NOAA
Fisheries, if individual Atlantic sturgeon is present in the Elizabeth River or adjacent creeks, they
most likely would be sub-adult or adult sturgeon searching for suitable foraging areas and could
occur at any time of the year. Due to the poor water quality in the ACP Project area, however,
suitable forage (e.g. benthic invertebrates such as mollusks and crustaceans) and appropriate
habitat conditions (e.g. areas of submerged aquatic vegetation) are limited.
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Based on consultation with the Southeast Region of NOAA Fisheries, Atlantic sturgeon
of the Carolina DPS are known or believed to occur in Northampton and Halifax Counties, North
Carolina (NOAA, 2014b). The Status Review of the Atlantic sturgeon issued by NOAA
Fisheries in 2007 identifies known occurrences of the species in the Roanoke River, which is
crossed by the proposed AP-2 mainline approximately seven river miles downstream from
Roanoke Rapids, near Weldon, at the Northampton and Halifax County line. In a letter dated
November 21, 2014, the NCWRC also said that there are records for Atlantic sturgeon in the
Roanoke River, and that researchers have recently documented Fall spawning in the river near
Weldon (NCWRC, 2014). The Status Review also identifies occurrences of Atlantic sturgeon in
the Nottoway, Cape Fear, Tar, and Neuse Rivers, each of which is crossed by the proposed AP-2
mainline route. None of these crossings occur within Halifax or Northampton County and they
are not expected to support Atlantic sturgeon. Only the Roanoke River crossing is expected to
support Atlantic sturgeon, during Spring and early Summer spawning. Atlantic is evaluating use
of the HDD construction method to cross the Roanoke River, which would minimize or avoid
impacts on the spawning of Atlantic sturgeon.
Shortnose Sturgeon
The shortnose sturgeon is federally endangered throughout its range. The shortnose
sturgeon is a relatively small (usually less than three feet long), long-lived, benthic-feeding
species of anadromous fish. Habitats primarily include slow-moving riverine, estuarine, and
marine near shore waters. The sturgeon inhabits the lower sections of larger rivers and coastal
waters along the Atlantic coast. It may spend most of the year in brackish or salt water, moving
into fresh water only to spawn. In late Fall, adults congregate in wintering sites. Between late
Spring and early Fall, the species travels upriver to spawn using faster moving deep channels in
fresh and brackish water habitats (NOAA, 2014i).
Based on information provided by the Northeast Region of NOAA Fisheries, shortnose
sturgeon is unlikely to occur in waterbodies crossed by the proposed ACP pipelines in Virginia.
The species is not currently known to occur in the James or Elizabeth River basins (NOAA
2014i).
Although data are lacking for the rivers of North Carolina, the shortnose sturgeon may
occur in larger inland rivers in the State. The Southeast Region of NOAA Fisheries identified
shortnose sturgeon as occurring in North Carolina, but did not provide locations specific to the
ACP Project area (NOAA, 2014k). Although the proposed AP-2 mainline route crosses the Cape
Fear River in Cumberland County, the Tar River in Nash County, and the Neuse River in
Johnston County, the crossings are likely too far inland for the species to occur. The recovery
plan for shortnose sturgeon only identifies the species occurring in the lower Cape Fear River
below the dam upstream of Wilmington, with a population of less than 50 fish (NOAA Fisheries,
1998). Therefore, the species is not expected to experience any direct or indirect effects from the
proposed ACP.
Sea Turtles
NOAA Fisheries shares ESA authority with the FWS for sea turtles. Pursuant to a joint
memorandum of understanding, the FWS has jurisdiction over sea turtles on land (terrestrial
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habitat) and NOAA Fisheries has jurisdiction over sea turtles in their marine habitats. Adult sea
turtles only occur on land to lay eggs, but they are not known to nest in the ACP Project area.
Therefore, construction and operation of proposed ACP facilities would not impact nesting sea
turtles.
Five species of sea turtle listed as threatened or endangered under the ESA, including the
green, loggerhead, hawksbill, leatherback, and Kemp’s Ridley turtles occur in marine and
estuarine waters off the Atlantic Coast (NOAA Fisheries, 2015c). With the exception of the
hawksbill, which is considered a rare visitor, juvenile and adult sea turtles are generally present
migrating and foraging from May through November. In Virginia, juveniles and adults of these
species of sea turtle may arrive as early as April/May.
Based on information provided by the Northeast Region of NOAA Fisheries, none of the
five species of sea turtle are expected to occur in the ACP Project area in Virginia, and sea turtles
are not expected to experience any direct or indirect effects from the proposed ACP (NOAA
Fisheries, 2014j).
3.7.1.3 General Construction Impacts and Mitigation
Atlantic and DTI will conduct field surveys as recommended by the FWS ESFO in each
State/Commonwealth crossed by the Projects to determine if federally listed species occur in the
ACP Project area or SHP Project area.
A discussion of potential effects on bats and mussels, both of which are distributed across
the majority of the ACP Project area and SHP Project area, is included below. The remaining
species have potential to occur in specific locations in the ACP Project area and SHP Project
area. Potential impacts on these species, as well as avoidance and mitigation measures that will
be implemented by Atlantic and DTI will be identified in the final Resource Report 3.
Bats
Atlantic and DTI are evaluating measures to avoid effects on the federally listed and
proposed/considered bat species listed above with potential to occur in the ACP Project area and
SHP Project area. A plan for Winter tree clearing will be submitted to the FWS and the FERC
for review. Atlantic and DTI anticipate that direct adverse effects to the four bat species can be
avoided during construction by Winter tree clearing. Atlantic and DTI will develop and
implement a contingency plan in the event that some sections of the route cannot be cleared prior
to Spring bat emergence or if the FWS requests areas surrounding hibernacula be cleared outside
of hibernation season to avoid affects from noise to hibernating bats. For construction activities
that will occur when bats may be actively utilizing forest habitat in the Project area, Atlantic and
DTI will develop measures to be implemented to reduce or avoid adverse effects to the three
listed bat species.
Once surveys are completed and the proximity of roost trees is determined, avoidance
and minimizations measures will be developed. Specific avoidance and mitigation will be
included in the final Resource Report 3.
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Mussels
Atlantic and DTI are evaluating measures to avoid effects on federally listed freshwater
mussels by minimizing impacts on habitat. Atlantic and DTI will implement
State/Commonwealth and Federal water quality requirements and the Plan and Procedures to
reduce and minimize potential erosion and sedimentation in waterbodies due to construction
activities. See Resource Report 1 for a description of potential waterbody crossing methods.
Once mussel habitat assessments and occurrence surveys are complete, Atlantic and DTI will
identify appropriate construction and mitigation measures to avoid or minimize impacts on
federally listed mussel species. Specific avoidance and mitigation measures will be identified in
the final Resource Report 3.
Other Species
Additional information about species identified during field surveys in 2015 will be
included in the final Resource Report 3.
3.7.2 U.S. Forest Service Species
As noted in Resource Report 1, the route for the proposed AP-1 mainline crosses
approximately 29.7 miles of USFS lands in the MNF and GWNF. The USFS is required under
the National Forest Management Act of 1976 to manage habitats, participate in the recovery of
threatened and endangered plant and animal species, and avoid actions that could cause a species
to become threatened or endangered. The USFS maintains Regional Forester Sensitive Species
(RFSS) lists for the MNF and the GWNF. The list for each National Forest includes species
identified by the Regional Forester that may require additional protection by the USFS. In
addition to the RFSS lists, the LRMP for each National Forest identifies MIS. MIS for each
National Forest are species which are actively monitored to assess impacts of forest management
activities on native biota within National Forest lands.
Atlantic is in the process of coordinating with MNF and GWNF staff to identify RFSS
with the potential to occur along the proposed AP-1 mainline route. A summary of
correspondence to date is provided in Appendix 1H of Resource Report 1. Biological surveys
for select sensitive species are planned for the Spring and Summer of 2015. Surveys will
document habitat and occurrences of species within a 300-foot-wide survey corridor. A larger
area will be surveyed on a case-by-case basis if required for particular species identified in the
LRMP. If any sensitive species are encountered in the survey area, Atlantic will coordinate with
the USFS to develop measures to avoid or minimize impacts on the species.
3.7.2.1 Monongahela National Forest
The MNF is located in the Eastern Forest Service Region (Region 9). The AP-1 mainline
route crosses approximately 17.9 miles of the MNF. Coordination with the MNF regarding
RFSS and MIS is ongoing.
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West Virginia Northern Flying Squirrel
The West Virginia northern flying squirrel was listed as a federally endangered
subspecies in 1985. The squirrel has since been removed from the endangered species list in
2008, but a court ruling following a lawsuit in 2011 ordered the FWS to restore ESA protections
to the species. The squirrel remained an endangered species until the U.S. Court of Appeals
reversed the initial court decision in 2012, and the subspecies was officially delisted in 2013
(FWS, 2013c). This species is also listed as Commonwealth endangered in Virginia.
West Virginia northern flying squirrels are small, nocturnal mammals that possess furcovered membranes between front and hind limbs called patagia, and long, broad, flat tails which
enable them to glide through the air. They are covered by soft, dense fur that is typically
brownish on the top of the body and grayish on the underside. Unlike other squirrels, the West
Virginia northern flying squirrel is not highly dependent on seeds and nuts, but primarily subsists
on lichens and fungi. These squirrels also remain active during Winter (FWS, 1990b).
Historically, West Virginia flying squirrels inhabited mature red spruce forests that once
dominated the Allegheny Highlands. Significant loss of these forests occurred from extensive
logging that began in the 1880s and lasted until the 1940s (FWS, 1990b). Today, the recovery of
this subspecies can be attributed to the regeneration of high-elevation spruce-northern hardwood
forests in the decades since the cessation of industrial logging. West Virginia northern flying
squirrels are associated with red spruce and mixed conifer-northern hardwood forests in the
central Appalachians. Observations of West Virginia northern flying squirrels have also
occurred in stands with eastern hemlock, Norway spruce, and red pine.
Using the mean home range size for male West Virginia northern flying squirrels of
54 hectares (133 acres) (Menzel et al. 2006), Atlantic and DTI developed a habitat model using
known observations of West Virginia northern flying squirrels in the ACP Project area within the
MNF as well as in Highland County, Virginia. For each known observation point, a 400-meter
(1,312-foot) buffered polygon was developed as representing suitable habitat. This habitat
model will be submitted to the WVDNR, West Virginia FWS, VDGIF, and the MNF for
approval prior to conducting habitat mapping for the species along the proposed AP-1 mainline
route.
3.7.2.2 George Washington National Forest
The GWNF is located in the USFS Southern Region (Region 8). The AP-1 mainline
route crosses approximately 11.8 miles of the GWNF. Coordination with the GWNF regarding
RFSS and MIS is ongoing.
Cow Knob Salamander
The Cow Knob salamander is recognized as a management indicator species within the
GWNF. In 1994, the FWS and the USFS entered into a Conservation Agreement for the cow
knob salamander resulting in protection of occupied habitats within the GWNF.
This salamander is a medium sized terrestrial species reaching lengths of five to six
inches. The salamander is dark gray or brown with a row of white or yellow spots along the
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sides with white or yellow spots on the back. The species is found only in the Shenandoah
Mountains between elevations of 2,400 and 4,300 feet. The cow knob salamander lives under
rocks, logs, and other debris where it is moist and cool. In dry weather, it retreats underground.
It generally forages at night and is primarily nocturnal. The salamanders are active in the Spring
and in the Fall during cool moist weather in mixed hardwood and hardwood mixed with eastern
hemlock.
Based on preliminary desktop review of topographic and vegetation cover maps, the
proposed AP-1 mainline route crosses mixed hardwood forests at elevations exceeding 2,400 feet
in Augusta County, Virginia. In a letter to Atlantic dated February 19, 2015, the VDGIF
recommended that the AP-1 mainline be routed to avoid cow knob salamander habitats within
the GWNF (VDGIF, 2015a). Atlantic and DTI will utilize a qualified biological surveyor to
review the route; prepare a cow knob salamander survey plan for review by the FWS, USFS, and
VDGIF; and survey the proposed route in Spring of 2015.
3.7.2.3 General Construction Impacts and Mitigation
Atlantic has initiated consultation with the USFS regarding potential impacts on species
and survey requirements. Additional information regarding the results of those consultations and
subsequent surveys will be included in the final Resource Report 3.
3.7.3 State/Commonwealth-Listed Species
West Virginia
West Virginia does not have a State threatened and endangered species program, instead
deferring to the FWS’s list of federally listed threatened and endangered species. In addition to
Federal listed species, however, rare species are assigned a State rank by the WVNHP.
In accordance with the WVMSP, all native freshwater mussels are protected in West
Virginia (WVMSP, 2014) in addition to the federally listed mussel species discussed in
Section 3.6.1.2 above. Based on review of the WVMSP, four waterbodies in the ACP Project
area are known or believed to support State-protected native freshwater mussels including
French Creek, Buckhannon River, Tygart Valley River, and West Fork Greenbrier River.
Additionally four waterbodies in the SHP Project area are known or believed to support Stateprotected native freshwater mussels including South Fork Fishing Creek, Indian Creek, Buckeye
Creek, and Flint Run. Atlantic and DTI are planning to conduct surveys in these streams for
mussel species.
Atlantic and DTI have initiated consultation with WVNHP for species information and
survey requirements. Additional information regarding the results of those consultations and
subsequent surveys will be included in the final Resource Report 3.
Virginia
Virginia has separate acts protecting threatened and endangered species. The Virginia
Endangered Species Act (Va. Code §§ 29.1-563 to 29.1-570) designates VDGIF as the
Commonwealth agency with jurisdiction over federally or Commonwealth-listed endangered or
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threatened fish and wildlife. The act prohibits by regulation the taking, transportation,
processing, sale, or offer for sale of those species.
Under the Endangered Plant and Insect Species Act (Virginia Regulations 325-01 et
seq.), the taking or possession of endangered or threatened plant and insect species is prohibited.
The VDCR represents the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, which is
responsible for Commonwealth-listed plants and insects, in providing comments regarding
potential effects on Commonwealth-listed plant and insect species.
Atlantic and DTI requested and received data on known occurrences of Commonwealthlisted species in Virginia from the VDCR NHP. Table 3.7.3-1 summarizes this data. Atlantic
and DTI additionally have consulted and continue to consult with the VDGIF and VDCR
regarding impacts on Commonwealth-listed threatened and endangered species. A letter from
the VDCR was received on November 18, 2014 identifying Natural Area Preserves and
conservation sites in the ACP Project area; these are discussed in Section 3.2.1.1 above. A
response from the VDGIF was received on February 19, 2015.
Atlantic has initiated consultation with VDGIF and VDCR for species information and
survey requirements. Additional information regarding the results of those consultations and
subsequent surveys will be included in the final Resource Report 3.
North Carolina
State-listed species in North Carolina are separated into three categories: North Carolina
Endangered, North Carolina Threatened, and North Carolina Special Concern. Species listed in
these categories have been recognized as needing additional conservation by the NCWRC under
the State Endangered Species Act (G.S. 113-331 to 113-337).
Atlantic requested and received data on known occurrences of State-listed species within
a 2-mile-wide corridor centered on the proposed ACP pipeline routes from the NCDENR.
Table 3.7.3-1 summarizes this data.
In addition to this data, Atlantic solicited and received comments in a letter dated
November 21, 2014 from the NCWRC regarding known occurrences of State-listed aquatic
species along the proposed routes. These data also are provided in Table 3.7.3-1. The NCWRC
requested a mussel survey in streams that are second order or larger within the Neuse and Tar
River basins. For any streams where mussels are present at the crossing, a second mussel survey
is planned to relocate mussels that could be impacted during pipeline installation. Surveys for
Carolina madtoms will be completed at the same time as the mussel surveys in the Tar and
Neuse basins. The NCWRC also requested mussel surveys in the Roanoke and Cape Fear Rivers
immediately prior to pipeline installation to relocate mussels that will be impacted by
construction.
Atlantic has initiated consultation with NCWRC for species information and survey
requirements. Additional information regarding the results of those consultations and subsequent
surveys will be included in the final Resource Report 3.
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TABLE 3.7.3-1
State/Commonwealth-listed Endangered and Threatened Species Potentially Occurring in the
Atlantic Coast Pipeline Area and Supply Header Project Area a,b
Species
Status c
VIRGINIA-LISTED SPECIES
Amphibians
E
Eastern Tiger
Salamander
Project Component
and County/City
Basic Habitat Association
Eliminated from Further
Consideration/Discussion
AP-1, Augusta,
Nelson
Terrestrial habitats widespread including open
fields, coniferous forests, and deciduous forests
with friable soil. Breeding requires vernal
ponds, sinkhole ponds, wetlands, or (rarely) slow
fishless streams.
Habitat assessment and
presence/absence surveys
Mabee’s
Salamander
T
AP-3, Suffolk
Hardwood-pine mixed forest, bogs, ponds, low
wet woods, swamps. Breeds in fishless vernal
ponds or ephemeral sinkholes.
Habitat assessment and
presence/absence surveys
Mammals
American Water
Shrew
E
AP-1, Highland
High elevation headwater streams with rocks,
debris dams, and overhanging banks.
Habitat assessment and
presence/absence surveys
T
AP-3, Suffolk,
Chesapeake
Habitats in the Great Dismal swamp which are
not permanently flooded.
Habitat assessment and
presence/absence surveys
E
AP1, AP-3,
Greensville,
Southampton, Suffolk
Winter habitat consisting of caves. Summer
habitat includes mature floodplain forest.
Habitat assessment and
presence/absence surveys
E
AP-1, Highland
T
AP-1, AP-3,
Greensville
AP-1, Highland,
Augusta, Nelson
AP-3, Chesapeake
Open pine or oak wood, bushy pastures, open
grassy areas.
Open woodlands.
Nest on cliff ledges, or man-made structures
such as tall buildings or bridges.
Habitat assessment and
presence/absence surveys
Habitat assessment and
presence/absence surveys
Habitat assessment and
presence/absence surveys
E
AP-3, Suffolk,
Chesapeake
Hardwood and mixed hardwood-pine forests,
cane fields, and edges of swampy areas.
Habitat assessment and
presence/absence surveys
T
AP-1, AP-3,
Cumberland, Prince
Edward, Dinwiddie,
Brunswick,
Greensville
AP-1, Nelson,
Buckingham,
Greensville,
Southampton
Larger rivers, fast flowing, with coarse sand and
gravel substrates.
Habitat assessment and
presence/absence surveys
Small to medium-sized streams with sand and
gravel bottoms and low current.
Habitat assessment and
presence/absence surveys
Dismal Swamp
Southeastern
Shrew
Rafinesque’s
Eastern Big-eared
Bat
Birds
Appalachian
Bewick’s Wren
Bachman’s
sparrow
Loggerhead
Shrike
Peregrine Falcon
Reptiles
Canebrake
Rattlesnake
Freshwater Mussels
Atlantic Pigtoe
Green Floater
T
T
T
NORTH CAROLINA-LISTED SPECIES
Amphibians
SC
Neuse River
AP-2, Halifax, Nash,
Waterdog
Johnston, Wilson
Mammals
SC
AP-2, Nash
Rafinesque’s Bigeared Bat (Coastal
Plain subspecies)
Birds
Bachman’s
Sparrow
SC
AP-2, Halifax
Higher elevations in the Appalachians, including
farm fields, forest edges, and brushy areas.
Rivers with logjams, leaf litter, and firm
substrates.
Eliminated from further
discussion based on agency
correspondence
Surveys planned
Winter habitat consisting of caves. Summer
habitat includes mature floodplain forest.
Conservation measures
Open woods with thick grass cover.
Conservation measures
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TABLE 3.7.3-1 (cont’d)
State/Commonwealth-listed Endangered and Threatened Species Potentially Occurring in the
Atlantic Coast Pipeline Project Area and Supply Header Project Area a,b
Status c
Project Component
and County/City
SC
AP-2, Halifax
T
AP-2, Halifax, Nash,
Johnston, Wilson
Small to medium sized shallow rivers with little
to no flow.
Surveys planned
SC
Low-gradient streams and rivers with gravel and
sand substrates in the Roanoke River drainage
Clear shallow permanent rivers with little to no
flow.
Surveys planned
SC
AP-2, Halifax,
Northampton
AP-2, Nash
SC
AP-2, Robeson
Open xeric habitats such as coastal dunes, pine
flatwoods, and oak hammocks.
Pending agency
consultation
Freshwater Mussels
Alewife Floater
T
E
Cape Fear Spike
SC
Coastal streams and lakes with sand and gravel
substrates.
Larger rivers, fast flowing, with coarse sand and
gravel substrates.
Muddy, loose, sandy substrates below logjams.
Surveys Planned
Atlantic Pigtoe
AP-2, Halifax, Nash,
Johnston, Wilson
AP-2, Halifax, Nash,
Johnston, Wilson
AP-2, Halifax, Nash,
Johnston, Wilson
Creeper
T
Streams, rivers, lakes, and ponds.
Surveys Planned
Eastern
Lampmussel
Eastern
Pondmussel
Green Floater
T
AP-2, Halifax, Nash,
Johnston, Wilson
AP-2, Halifax, Nash,
Johnston, Wilson
AP-2, Halifax, Nash,
Johnston, Wilson
Small streams to large rivers, ponds, and lakes
on sand or gravel substrate.
Low current lakes, ponds, and protected areas of
rivers with silt and sand substrates.
Surveys Planned
SC
Roanoke Slabshell
T
Small streams with low flows and gravel or sand
substrate.
Creeks and rivers with some current and coarse
sand and sand/gravel mixed substrates.
Large Atlantic Slope rivers with sand and gravel
substrates.
Surveys Planned
Notched Rainbow
AP-2, Halifax, Nash,
Johnston, Wilson
AP-2, Halifax, Nash,
Johnston, Wilson
AP-2, Halifax, Nash,
Johnston, Wilson
Tidewater Mucket
T
T
Most often found in sand and silt substrates, in
lakes, ponds, canals, streams, or rivers.
Large rivers with moderate current.
Surveys Planned
Triangle Floater
Yellow
Lampmussel
Yellow Lance
E
AP-2, Halifax, Nash,
Johnston, Wilson
AP-2, Halifax, Nash,
Johnston, Wilson
AP-2, Halifax, Nash,
Johnston, Wilson
Large streams and rivers with strong currents
and sand and gravel substrates.
Surveys Planned
E
AP-2, Halifax, Nash,
Johnston, Wilson
Small streams to large rivers with a variety of
preferred substrates.
Surveys Planned
E
AP-2, Sampson
E
AP-2, Cumberland
Species
Cerulean Warbler
Fish
Carolina Madtom
Crayfish
Chowanoke
Crayfish
North Carolina
Spiny Crayfish
Reptiles
Southern Hognosed Snake
Plants
American
Bluehearts
Sandhills Lily
T
E
Basic Habitat Association
Mature deciduous floodplain forest.
Sandy or gravelly soils in upland woods or
prairies.
In transition zones between dry longleaf pine
uplands and wet, wooded creeks and stream
heads.
Eliminated from Further
Consideration/Discussion
Conservation measures
Pending agency
consultation
Surveys planned
Surveys Planned
Surveys Planned
Surveys Planned
Surveys Planned
Surveys Planned
Eliminated from further
discussion based on agency
correspondence
Eliminated from further
discussion based on agency
correspondence
____________________
a
Potential species in the ACP Project area and SHP Project area based on NHI occurrences within 300 feet of the proposed pipeline
routes and response letters from the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission dated November 21, 2014, and the Virginia
Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, dated February 19, 2015.
b
West Virginia does not have State-listed species and no State species occurrences were identified during PNDI review in
Pennsylvania.
c
E – Endangered, T – Threatened, SC- Special Concern (NC only)
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Pennsylvania
Commonwealth-listed species in Pennsylvania are protected under Title 58, Part II of the
Pennsylvania Code (Pennsylvania Code 2014e). Three Commonwealth agencies are responsible
for administering this law, as follows: the PGC has jurisdiction over Commonwealth-listed birds
and mammals; the PFBC has jurisdiction over Commonwealth-listed fish, reptiles, amphibians,
and aquatic organisms; and the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources
has jurisdiction over Commonwealth-listed plants and terrestrial invertebrates.
DTI used the PNDI Environmental Review Tool to review the proposed SHP facilities in
Pennsylvania for documented occurrences of Commonwealth-listed species. No known
occurrences of Commonwealth-listed species were identified in the SHP Project area as a result
of this review.
3.7.3.1 General Construction Impacts and Mitigation
DTI has initiated consultation with the PGC, PFBC, and PDCNR for species information
and survey requirements. Additional information regarding the results of those consultations and
subsequent surveys will be included in the final Resource Report 3.
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3.8
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%20ES%20Strategic%20Plan.pdf. Accessed December 2014.
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_satyr.html. Accessed August 2014.
3-117
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U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. 2012c. Distribution of Federally Listed Threatened and
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ngeredSpecies080612.pdf. Accessed October 2014.
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2014.
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index.html. Accessed November 2014.
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Planning Guidance. January 2014. Available online at: http://www.fws.gov/midwest
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online at: http://www.fws.gov/raleigh/species/es_dwarf_wedgemussel.html. Accessed
August 2014.
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online at: http://www.fws.gov/raleigh/species/es_tar_spinymussel.html. Accessed
August 2014.
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Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. 2014p. Eastern Prairie Fringed Orchid (Platanthera
leucophaea). Available online at: http://www.fws.gov/midwest/Endangered/plants/
epfo.html. Accessed August 2014.
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. 2014r. Shale barren rock cress (Arabis serotina). Available
online at: http://ecos.fws.gov/speciesProfile/profile/speciesProfile.action?
spcode=Q2XA. Accessed August 2014.
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. 2014s. Small whorled pogonia (Isotria medeoloides). Available
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Accessed August 2014.
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. 2014t. Virginia spiraea (Spiraea virginiana). Available online
at: http://ecos.fws.gov/speciesProfile/profile/speciesProfile.action?spcode=Q2R1.
Accessed August 2014.
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. 2014a Great Dismal Swamp. Available online at:
http://www.fws.gov/refuge/Great_Dismal_Swamp/wildlife_and_habitat/index.html.
Accessed December 2014.
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. 2014n. James spinymussel Species Information. Available online
at: http://www.fws.gov/raleigh/species/es_james_spinymussel.html. Accessed August
2014.
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. 2014q. Running Buffalo Clover (Trifolium stoloniferum).
Available online at: http://www.fws.gov/midwest/endangered/plants/runningb.html.
Accessed August 2014.
U.S. Geological Survey, Gap Analysis Program. 2011. National Land Cover, Version 2. August
2011. Available online at: http://gapanalysis.usgs.gov/gaplandcover/viewer/.
U.S. Geological Survey. 2014. NLCD 92 Land Cover Class Definitions. Available online at
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Virginia Administrative Code. 2014a. Title 9, Agency 25, Chapter 260, Section 10: Designation
of Uses (9VAC25-260-10). Available online at: https://leg1.state.va.us/cgi-bin/legp504.
exe?000+reg+9VAC25-260-10 Accessed February 2015.
Virginia Administrative Code. 2014b. Title 9, Agency 25, Chapter 260, Section 370:
Classification column (9VAC25-260-370). Available online at: http://leg1.state.va.
us/cgi-bin/legp504.exe?000+reg+9VAC25-260-370 Accessed February 2015.
Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. 2014. Call dated June 2, from G.
Blosser (Natural Resource Group, LLC) to L. Nichols (VDACS).
Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation (VDCR). 2014d. Invasive Alien Plant Species
of Virginia. Available online at: http://www.dcr.virginia.gov/natural_heritage/
invspinfo.shtm. Accessed December 2014.
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Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation Natural Heritage Program. 2014b. The
natural communities of Virginia Classification of Ecological Community Groups.
Available online at: http://www.dcr.virginia.gov/natural_heritage/natural_
communities/ncTIId.shtml. Accessed November 2014.
Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation Natural Heritage Program. 2014e. Swamp
pink (Helonias bullata). Available online at: http://www.dcr.virginia.gov/natural_
heritage/documents/fshelobull.pdf. Accessed August 2014.
Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation Natural Heritage Program. 2014f. Virginia
sneezeweed (Helenium virginicum). Available online at: http://www.dcr.virgin
ia.gov/natural_heritage/documents/fshelevirg.pdf. Accessed August 2014.
Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation, Natural Heritage Program. 2014c. Natural
Heritage Screening and Element Occurrence, Geographic Information Systems Data received
10/20/14.
Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation. 2014a. Letter dated November 18, from
T. Smith (VDCR) to P. Faggert (DTI).
Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation. 2014d. Invasive Alien Plant Species of
Virginia. Available online at: http://www.dcr.virginia.gov/natural_heritage/invspinfo.shtm.
Accessed December 2014.
Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation. 2015a. Meeting dated January 12, with L.
Smith (VDCR), R. Hypes (VDCR), C. Ludwig (VDCR), T. Smith (VDCR), J. Bullock
(VDCR), B. Scarpinato (Atlantic), D. Lake (NRG), S. Throndson (NRG).
Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation. 2015b. Meeting dated March 3, with L.
Smith (VDCR), R. Hypes (VDCR), C. Ludwig (VDCR), T. Smith (VDCR), J. Bullock
(VDCR), S. Throndson (NRG), H. Berman (NRG), J. Martin (NRG).
Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries. 2013a. Freshwater Fish Citations. VDGIF
Fisheries Division. Available online at: http://www.dgif.virginia.gov/fishing/varp/
citations.asp Accessed January 2015.
Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries. 2013b. VDGIF Time of Year Restrictions
(TOYR) Table. Available online at: http://www.dgif.virginia.gov/environmental-programs
/files/VDGIF-Time-of-Year- Restrictions-Table.pdf . Accessed December 2014.
Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries. 2014a. Game/Sport Fish Regulations. VDGIF
Fisheries Division. Available online at: http://www.dgif.virginia.gov/fishing/reg
ulations/game.asp Accessed December 2014.
Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries. 2014b. Wildlife Environmental Review Map
Service (WERMS). VDGIF, Richmond, VA.
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Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries. 2014e. Virginian Golden Eagle Research
and Conservation. Available online at: http://www.dgif.virginia.gov/wildlife/
birds/golden-eagle/. Accessed December 2014.
Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries. 2015a. Letter Dated February 19, 2015 from
Raymond T. Fernald (VDGIF, Environmental Programs Manager) to W. Scarpinato (DTI).
Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries. 2015c. Virginia Big-eared Bat Species
Information. Available online at: http://www.dgif.virginia.gov/wildlife/
information/?s=050035. Accessed January 2015.
Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries. 2011. Cold Water Stream Survey. VDGIF,
Richmond, VA. Available online at: http://www.dgif.virginia.gov/gis/gis-data.asp Accessed
February 2015.
Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries. 2014c. Conservation Lands Database, GIS
Shapefile downloaded on 11/5/14. Available online at: http://www.dcr.virginia
.gov/natural_heritage/cldownloads.html.
Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries. 2014d. Wildlife Information. Available online at:
http://www.dgif.virginia.gov/wildlife/. Accessed December 2014.
Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries. 2015b. Highland Wildlife Management Area,
Virginia. Available online at: http://www.dgif.virginia.gov/wmas/detail.asp?
pid=28. Accessed April 2015.
Virginia Herpetological Society. 2014. Reptiles and Amphibians of Virginia. Available online at:
http://www.virginiaherpetologicalsociety.com/#_. Accessed December 2014.
West Virginia Code of State Rules. 2014. Title 47, Series 2: Requirements Governing Water
Quality Standards. Available online at: http://www.dep.wv.gov/WWE/Programs/
wqs/Documents/Rule%20Approved%20Letter%20and%20Rule%20Itself%202014/WV
DEP_WQS_2014Tri-Review_FinalRule47CSR2_June_2014.pdf Accessed November
2014.
West Virginia Department of Natural Resources. 2014e. Golden Eagles. Available online at:
http://www.wvdnr.gov/publications/pdffiles/wveagleswr.pdf. Accessed December 2014.
West Virginia Division of Environmental Protection. 2002. General Mitigation Plan
Agreement. WVDEP, Charleston, West Virginia.
West Virginia Division of Natural Resources. 2003a. Warmwater Hatchery Program. Available
online at: http://www.wvdnr.gov/fishing/warmwater_hatchery.shtm Accessed
November 2014.
West Virginia Division of Natural Resources. 2007. Restoring West Virginia’s Riverine Fishes.
Available online at: http://www.wvdnr.gov/wildlife/magazine/Archive/07winter/Vol7
No3restoringRiverineFishes.pdf Accessed November 2014.
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West Virginia Division of Natural Resources. 2012a. Stocking. Available online at:
http://www.wvdnr.gov/wildlife/magazine/archive/12Summer/Wild_Almanac.pdf
Accessed November 2014.
West Virginia Division of Natural Resources. 2013. West Virginia Hunting, Trapping, and
Fishing Map. Available online at: http://www.mapwv.gov/huntfish/map.html#
section=fishing Accessed February 2015.
West Virginia Division of Natural Resources. 2014a. Fishing Regulation Summary. Available
online at: http://www.wvdnr.gov/Fishing/Regs14/2014_Fishing_Regs.pdf Accessed
December 2014.
West Virginia Division of Natural Resources. 2014b. Mountain State Fishing. Available online
at: http://www.wvdnr.gov/fishing/PDFFiles/FISHtourweb04.pdf Accessed January
2015.
West Virginia Division of Natural Resources. 2014c. Ecological Communities. Available online
at: http://www.wvdnr.gov/Wildlife/Ecolog.shtm. Accessed November 2014.
West Virginia Division of Natural Resources. 2014d. West Virginia Animals. Available online
at: http://www.wvdnr.gov/Wildlife/Animals.shtm. Accessed December 2014.
West Virginia Division of Natural Resources. 2014f. Wildlife Diversity Notebook: Cheat Mountain
Salamander. Available online at: http://www.wvdnr.gov/wildlife/magazine/archive/05
Summer/wildlife_diversity_salamander.shtm. Accessed August 2014.
West Virginia Division of Natural Resources. 2003b. Stocking. Available online at:
http://www.wvdnr.gov/fishing/stocking_info.shtm. Accessed November 2014.
West Virginia Mussel Survey Protocol. 2014. Available online at: http://www.wvdnr.gov/
Mussels/West%20Virginia%20Mussel%20Survey%20Protocols%20March%202014.pdf
. Accessed December 2014.
West Virginia Natural Heritage Program. 2015. Geographic Information System (GIS) data.
West Virginia Department of Natural Resources, Elkins, West Virginia. Data use
agreement dated March 11, 2015.
Whitaker, O.J. and W.J.J. Hamilton. 1998. Mammals of the Eastern United States. 3rd ed.
Cornell University Press, Ithaca, NY.
Wolter, F., S. Capel, D. Pashley, S. Heath. 2008. Managing Land in the Piedmont in Virginia
for the Benefit of Birds and Other Wildlife. Second edition. 28 pp.
World Wildlife. 2014. Appalachian-Blue Ridge forests. Available at https://www.worldwildlife
.org/ecoregions/na0403. Accessed November 2014.
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ATLANTIC COAST PIPELINE
and
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SUPPLY HEADER PROJECT
Resource Report 3
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
APPENDIX 3A
Vegetative Communities and Sub-Communities Within the
Atlantic Coast Pipeline and Supply Header Projects
Resource Report 3
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
TABLE 3A
Vegetative Communities and Sub-Communities Within the Atlantic Coast Pipeline and Supply Header Projects
Vegetation
Community
Western
Allegheny
Plateau
Central
Appalachians
Ridge and Valley
Habitat Type/SubCommunity
Common Plant Species
Project(s)
Shale, sandstone, limestone, coal,
soils abundant in aluminum and iron
Mixed mesophytic forests,
white oak (Pinus strobus) and
red oak (Quercus rubra)
ACP and SHP
Permian Hills
More rugged, forested and cooler,
alfisols, shale, siltstone, limestone,
sandstone, coal, upland topsoil
Mixed mesophytic forests,
white oak, red oak,
ACP and SHP
Pittsburgh Low Plateau
Uplands with narrow and shallow
valleys, mines, shale, siltstone
Appalachian oak forests, some
mesophytic forests
SHP
Forested Hills and
Mountains
Sandstone, shale, siltstone, coal, more
rugged and steep
Mixed mesophytic forests,
mixed oak, red maple (Acer
rubrum)
ACP
Northern Sandstone Ridges
Steep and high ridges, forests, narrow
crests, high gradient streams,
sandstone, shale, siltstone
White oak, red oak, oakhickory-pine; hickory, longleaf
pine (Pinus palustris),
shortleaf pine (Pinus
echinata), loblolly pine (Pinus
taeda), post oak (Quercus
stellata)
ACP
Rolling valleys and low hills, shale,
siltstone, fine-grained sandstone,
larger streams
White oak, red oak, hickory,
longleaf pine, shortleaf pine,
loblolly pine, post oak
ACP
Broken ridges, sedimentary rocks
(siltstones), inceptisols
White oak, red oak, hickory,
longleaf pine, shortleaf pine,
loblolly pine, post oak, eastern
red cedar (Juniperus
virginiana), Virginia pine
(Pinus virginiana), chestnut
oak (Quercus prinus),
hawthorn, Allegheny plum
(Prunus alleghaniensis),
huckleberry, mountain parsley
(Pseudocymopterus
montanus), moss pink (Phlox
subulata), barrens ragwort
(Senecio antennariifolius),
birdfoot violet (Viola pedata),
Kate's mountain clover
(Trifolium virginicum)
ACP
Calcareous shale bedrock, dolomite,
limestone, flat, decreased water
drainage
Appalachian oak forests, oakhickory/pine forests
Northern Igneous Ridges
Ridges with high gaps and coves,
steep
White oak, red oak
Northern Sedimentary and
Metasedimentary Ridges
Steep-slope ridges, deep and narrow
valleys, soils with low fertility, acidic
soils
White oak, red oak
Monongahela Transition
Zone
Northern Shale Valleys
Northern Dissected Ridges
and Knobs
Northern
Limestone/Dolomite Valleys
Blue Ridge
General Characteristics
3A-1
ACP
Resource Report 3
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
TABLE 3A (cont’d)
Vegetative Communities and Sub-Communities Within the Atlantic Coast Pipeline and Supply Header Projects
Vegetation
Community
Habitat Type/SubCommunity
Northern
Piedmont
Piedmont
General Characteristics
Common Plant Species
Piedmont Uplands
Rounded hills, low ridges, narrow
valleys, high stream gradients
White oak, red oak, some
mixed mesophytic forests,
chestnut oak, hemlock, beech,
sugar maple (Acer saccarum),
basswood, greenbrier, prairie
grasses, prairie dropseed
(Sporobolus heterolepis), pitch
pine (Pinus rigida)
ACP
Northern Inner Piedmont
Hilly, irregular plains, dissected
upland with ridges and mountains,
ultisols, clay-rich, stream gradients
low to moderate
Hickory, shortleaf pine,
loblolly pine, white oak, post
oak, chestnut oak
ACP
Mesozoic sediment deposits, red
rocks, coal, igneous dikes, wider
floodplains
Lizard's tail (Saururus
cernuus), oak-dominated
bottomlands
ACP
Flat, finer soils than 65c, agricultural,
several swampy or wet bays
Longleaf pine-turkey oak,
evergreen shrubs, rosemary
(Rosmarinus officinalis),
woody mints
ACP
Sedimentary rock, hilly, swampy,
pools, cascades, sand silt, clay and
gravel soils
Hickory, longleaf pine,
shortleaf pine, loblolly pine,
white oak, post oak.
ACP
Southeastern Floodplains
and Low Terraces
Large rivers, ponds, swamps, lakes,
important wildlife corridors, alfisols
and entisols
Bald cypress (Taxodium
distichum), water tupelo
(Nyssa aquatica), oak
bottomland hardwoods, water
oak (Quercus nigra), elm,
pecan (Carya illinoinensis)
ACP
Carolina Flatwoods
Larger uplands, poorly drained soils,
fine to coarse-loamy soils with
nutrient depletion (phosphorus),
freshwater marshes
Pine flatwoods, pine savannas,
pond pine woodlands, loblolly
pine
ACP
Chesapeake-Pamlico
Lowlands and Tidal Marshes
Lowest elevation, plains, valleys,
seasonally wet soils, brackish and
fresh streams, a lot of cropland
Oak-hickory-pine, northern
cordgrass, sweetgum
(Liquidambar styraciflua), red
maple, tulip poplar
(Liriodendron tulipifera),
sycamore (Plantanus
occidentalis), birch, ironwood
(Ostrya virginiana)
ACP
Swamps and Peatlands
Humid, saturated, anoxic soils,
organic matter, high water tables
Atlantic white cedar
(Chamaecyparis thyoides),
stunted trees, sphagnums, other
mosses
ACP
Mid-Atlantic Flatwoods
Poorly drained soils, artificial
drainage near agricultural lands, clay
and sandy soils
Less longleaf pine, oakhickory-pine, oak-gumcypress, evergreen forests, mix
of different grasses
ACP
Triassic Basins
Southeastern
Plains
Atlantic Southern Loam
Plains
Rolling Coastal Plain
Mid-Atlantic
Coastal Plain
____________________
Source: EPA, 2010
3A-2
Project(s)
ATLANTIC COAST PIPELINE, LLC
ATLANTIC COAST PIPELINE
and
DOMINION TRANSMISSION, INC.
SUPPLY HEADER PROJECT
Resource Report 3
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
APPENDIX 3B
Federally Listed Species Potentially Occurring Within the Vicinity of the
Atlantic Coast Pipeline and Supply Header Projects
TABLE 3B-1
Federally Listed Species Potentially Occurring Within the Vicinity of the Atlantic Coast Pipeline
Counties with Potential Occurrence
Survey Type
Common Name (Scientific Name)
Status a
Amphibian
Cheat Mountain Salamander
(Plethodon nettingi)
T
Bird
Red-cockaded Woodpecker
(Picoides borealis)
E
All Counties
Crossed
Bird
Wood Stork
(Mycteria Americana)
E
Sampson
Presence/Absence
Survey
Survey for nests
(Helicopter) and
activity verification
Fish
Atlantic Sturgeon e
(Acipenser oxyrinchus oxyrinchus)
E
Northampton
and Halifax
Survey not anticipated
Fish
Cape Fear Shiner
(Notropis mekistocholas)
E
Cape Fear River
Drainage
Survey not anticipated
(Pending confirmation
from FWS)
Fish
Roanoke Logperch
(Percina rex)
E
Fish
Shortnose Sturgeon e
(Cipenser brevirostrum)
E
Freshwater Mussel
Clubshell
(Pleurobema clava)
E
Freshwater Mussel
Dwarf Wedgemussel
(Alasmidonta heterodon)
E
Freshwater Mussel
James Spinymussel
(Pleurobema collina)
E
Freshwater Mussel
Snuffbox
(Epioblasma triquetra)
E
Species Type
NC
VA
WV
NC
VA
Pocahontas
and Randolph
Southampton,
Suffolk
Presence/Absence
Survey (Helicopter)
Habitat Assessment
Survey for cavity trees
3B-1
Brunswick,
Dinwiddie,
Greensville,
Nottoway, and
Southampton
Presence/Absence
Survey (Helicopter)
Habitat Assessment
Survey for cavity trees
Habitat Assessment
Occupancy Surveys
(if needed)
Survey not anticipated
Downstream
occurrences in
adjacent Bladen
County
Occupancy Surveys
Lewis,
Harrison, and
Upshur
Halifax,
Johnston, and
Nash
WV
Habitat Assessment
Occupancy Surveys
Brunswick,
Dinwiddie, and
Nottoway
Habitat Assessment
(pending weather)
Occupancy Surveys
(if needed)
Highland,
Buckingham,
Cumberland, and
Nelson
Habitat Assessment
(pending weather)
Occupancy Surveys
(if needed)
Habitat Assessment
(pending weather)
Occupancy Surveys
(if needed)
Lewis,
Harrison, and
Upshur
Occupancy Surveys
TABLE 3B-1 (cont’d)
Federally Listed Species Potentially Occurring Within the Vicinity of the Atlantic Coast Pipeline
Counties with Potential Occurrence
Common Name (Scientific Name)
Status a
NC
VA
Freshwater Mussel
Tar River Spinymussel
(Elliptio steinstansana)
E
Halifax,
Johnston, and
Nash
Dinwiddie
Invertebrate
Madison Cave Isopod
(Antrolana lira)
T
Invertebrate
Saint Francis’ Satyr
(Neonympha mitchellii francisci)
E
Mammal
Indiana Bat
(Myotis sodalis)
E
Mammal
Northern Long-eared Bat
(Myotis septentrionalis)
T
Mammal
Virginia Big-eared Bat
(Corynorhinus townsendii
virginianus)
E
Plant
American Chaffseed
(Schwalba americana)
E
Plant
Eastern Prairie Fringed Orchid
(Platanthera leucophaea)
T
Plant
Michaux’s Sumac
(Rhus michauxii)
E
Plant
Northeastern Bulrush
(Scirpus ancistrochaetus)
E
Species Type
Survey Type
WV
NC
VA
Habitat Assessment
(pending weather)
Occupancy Surveys
(if needed)
Habitat Assessment
(pending weather)
Occupancy Surveys
(if needed)
Identification of karst
topography
Augusta
Cumberland
3B-2
All Counties
Crossed
Cumberland
Survey not anticipated
(Pending confirmation
from FWS)
Highland,
Augusta, and
Cumberland
All Counties
Crossed
All Counties
Crossed
All Counties
Crossed
Highland
Randolph
Greensville
Augusta
Cumberland,
Robeson,
Johnston, and
Wilson
WV
Brunswick,
Dinwiddie, and
Nottoway
Augusta and
Highland
Presence/Absence
Surveys
Hibernacula
Assessment Surveys
Presence/Absence
Surveys
Hibernacula
Assessment Surveys
Presence/Absence
Surveys
Pending consultation
with FWS
Presence/Absence
Surveys
Pending consultation
with FWS
Presence/Absence
Surveys
Pending consultation
with FWS
Presence/Absence
Surveys
Hibernacula
Assessment Surveys
Presence/Absence
Surveys
Hibernacula
Assessment Surveys
Presence/Absence
Surveys
Presence/Absence
Surveys
Presence/Absence
Surveys
Presence/Absence
Surveys
Identification of
Roost Trees
Presence/Absence
Surveys
Hibernacula
Assessment Surveys
Identification of
Roost Trees
Presence/Absence
Surveys
Hibernacula
Assessment Surveys
Presence/Absence
Surveys
Hibernacula
Assessment Surveys
TABLE 3B-1 (cont’d)
Federally Listed Species Potentially Occurring Within the Vicinity of the Atlantic Coast Pipeline
Counties with Potential Occurrence
Common Name (Scientific Name)
Status a
NC
Plant
Pondberry
(Lindera melissifolia)
E
Cumberland and
Sampson
Plant
Rough-leaved Loosestrife
(Lysimachia asperulifolia)
E
Cumberland
Plant
Running Buffalo Clover
(Trifolium stoloniferum)
E
Plant
Shale Barren Rock Cress
(Boechera serotina)
E
Augusta and
Highland
Plant
Small Whorled Pogonia
(Isotria medeoloides)
T
Species likely
extirpated
Plant
Swamp Pink
(Helonias bullata)
Virginia Sneezeweed
(Helenium virginicum)
Virginia Spirea
(Spiraea virginiana)
T
Augusta and
Nelson
Augusta
Species Type
3B-3
Plant
Plant
T
T
____________________
a
Federal species listing abbreviations - (E) Endangered, (T) Threatened
VA
Survey Type
WV
NC
VA
WV
Presence/Absence
Surveys
Pending consultation
with FWS
Presence/Absence
Surveys
Pending consultation
with FWS
Pocahontas,
Upshur, and
Randolph
Presence/Absence
Surveys
Presence/Absence
Surveys
Randolph
Pocahontas
and Upshur
Presence/Absence
Surveys
Pending consultation
with FWS
Presence/Absence
Surveys
Presence/Absence
Surveys
Survey not
anticipated
(Pending
confirmation from
FWS)
Presence/Absence
Surveys
Presence/Absence
Surveys
TABLE 3B-2
Federally Listed Species Potentially Occurring Within the Vicinity of the Supply Header Project
Species
Type
Common Name
(Scientific Name)
Counties With Potential
Occurrence
Status a
PA
WV
Survey Type
PA
WV
Freshwater
Mussel
Clubshell
(Pleurobema clava)
E
All counties
containing
perennial
waterbodies
Habitat Assessment
(pending weather)
Occupancy Surveys
(if needed)
Freshwater
Mussel
Snuffbox
(Epioblasma triquetra)
E
All counties
containing
perennial
waterbodies
Habitat Assessment
(pending weather)
Occupancy Surveys
(if needed)
Mammal
Indiana Bat
(Myotis sodalis)
E
All Counties
Crossed
All Counties
Crossed
Presence/Absence
Surveys
Hibernacula
Assessment Surveys
Identification of Roost
Trees
Presence/Absence
Surveys
Hibernacula
Assessment Surveys
Mammal
Northern Long-eared
Bat
(Myotis
septentrionalis)
T
All Counties
Crossed
All Counties
Crossed
Presence/Absence
Surveys
Hibernacula
Assessment Surveys
Identification of Roost
Trees
Presence/Absence
Surveys
Hibernacula
Assessment Surveys
Plant
Virginia Spirea
(Spiraea virginiana)
T
Doddridge
____________________
a
Federal species listing abbreviations – (E) Endangered, (T) Threatened
3B-4
Presence/Absence
Surveys
ATLANTIC COAST PIPELINE, LLC
ATLANTIC COAST PIPELINE
and
DOMINION TRANSMISSION, INC.
SUPPLY HEADER PROJECT
Resource Report 3
Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
APPENDIX 3C
Migratory Birds of Conservation Concern Within the
Vicinity of the Atlantic Coast Pipeline and Supply Header Projects
TABLE 3C
Migratory Birds of Conservation Concern Within the Vicinity of the Atlantic Coast Pipeline and Supply Header Projects
Atlantic Coast Pipeline
Common Name
(Scientific name)
BCR Region
Listed In
Nesting Habitat
West
Virginia
Supply Header Project
Virginia
North
Carolina
American Bittern
(Botaurus lentiginos)
27
Freshwater marshes with
tall vegetation.
Xa
Xa
American Kestrel
(Falco sparverius Paulus)
27
Longleaf pine sandhills.
X
X
American Oystercatcher
(Haematopus palliates)
27
Beaches, dunes, marsh
islands.
X
27, 29
Pine forests with grassy
floors.
Bachman's Sparrow
(Aimophila) aestivalis
Pennsylvania
West
Virginia
X
X
X
Bald Eagle
(Haliaeetus leucocephalus)
27, 28, 29
Forested areas adjacent to
large bodies of water.
X
X
X
Black-billed Cuckoo
(Coccyzus erythropthalmus)
None project
crosses
Woodlands and thickets.
X
X
X
X
Black-capped Chickadee
(Poecile carolinensis)
28
Deciduous and mixed
forests, swamps, riparian
areas, and open woods
and parks.
X
X
X
X
Black Rail
(Laterallus jamaicensis)
27, 29
High portions of shallow
freshwater marshes, wet
meadows, and flooded
grassy vegetation.
X
X
X
Black Skimmer
(Rynchops niger)
27
Beaches, dredge
deposition islands,
saltmarshes, and
gravelbars.
X
Black-throated Green Warbler
(Setophaga virens)
27
Transitional coniferousdeciduous forest.
X
Blue-winged Warbler
(Vermivora cyanoptera)
27, 28, 29
Forest/field edges, often
near abandoned farmland
and forest clearings.
Brown-headed Nuthatch
(Sitta pusilla)
27, 29
Pine forests of comprised
of longleaf and slash pines
where natural fire patterns
have been maintained.
Canada Warbler
(Cardellina Canadensis)
28
Moist forests with a welldeveloped shrub layer,
swamps, and streamside
thickets.
X
X
27, 28, 29
Forests with tall
deciduous trees and open
understory, such as wet
bottomlands and dry
slopes.
X
X
X
X
X
Xa
Cerulean Warbler
(Setophaga cerulean)
Chuck-will's-widow
(Antrostomus carolinensis)
Fox Sparrow
(Passerella liaca)
Golden-winged Warbler
(Columbina passerine)
X
X
X
27
Pine, oak-hickory, and
other forests often with
canopy openings.
None project
crosses
Thickets and chapparal.
Xa
Xa
Regenerating clear-cuts,
wet thickets, tamarack
bogs, and aspen or willow
stands.
X
X
28
3C-1
X
X
X
X
Xa
Xa
X
TABLE 3C (cont’d)
Migratory Birds of Conservation Concern Within the Vicinity of the Atlantic Coast Pipeline and Supply Header Projects
Atlantic Coast Pipeline
Common Name
(Scientific name)
Gull-billed Tern
(Gelochelidon nilotica)
Henslow's Sparrow
(Ammodramus henslowii)
BCR Region
Listed In
27
27, 28, 29
West
Virginia
Nesting Habitat
Gravelly or sandy
beaches.
Virginia
Supply Header Project
North
Carolina
Pennsylvania
West
Virginia
X
X
X
X
Large, flat fields with no
woody plants, and with
tall, dense grass.
Xa
Hudsonian Godwit
(Limosa haemastica)
None project
crosses
Kentucky Warbler
(Geothlypis Formosa)
27, 28, 29
Hardwood forests with
thick understory.
X
X
X
X
X
Least Bittern
(Ixobrychus exilis)
27
Freshwater or brackish
marshes with tall
vegetation.
X
X
X
X
X
Least Tern
(Sternula antillarum)
27
Beaches and lakes and
rivers with gravel or
sand bars.
X
None project
crosses
Open boreal forests with
shallow wetlands.
Xa
Loggerhead Shrike
(Lanius ludovicianus)
27, 28, 29
Short grass with isolated
trees or shrubs,
especially pastureland.
X
Louisiana Waterthrush
(Parkesia motacilla)
28
Breeds along gravelbottomed streams
flowing through hilly,
deciduous forest.
X
X
Marbled Godwit
(Limosa fedoa)
27
Marshes and flooded
plains.
X
X
X
X
X
X
Lesser Yellowlegs
(Tringa flavipes)
Mississippi Kite
(Ictinia mississippiensis)
Grassy tundra.
X
X
X
Xa
None project
crosses
Riverine forest, and open
woodland.
Nelson's Sharp-tailed Sparrow
(Ammodramus nelsoni)
27
Freshwater marshes and
wet meadows.
Northern Saw-whet Owl
(Aegolius acadicus)
28
Various forested habitats
and most closely
associated with conifer
and mixed
conifer/hardwood
forests.
27, 28, 29
Cliffs, manmade objects,
such as transmission
towers, silos, and
bridges.
None project
crosses
Seasonal or permanent
ponds with dense stands
of emergent vegetation,
bays and sloughs.
X
X
Prairie Warbler
(Setophaga discolor)
27, 28, 29
Various shrubby habitats
including southern pine
forest, pine and scrub
oak barrens, and
regenerating forest.
X
X
X
Prothonotary Warbler
(Protonotaria citrea)
27
Wooded swamps and
other bottomland forests.
X
X
Low tundra and gravel
beaches along rivers.
Xa
Peregrine Falcon
(Falco peregrinus)
Pied-billed Grebe
(Podilymbus podiceps)
Purple Sandpiper
(Calidris maritima)
None project
crosses
3C-2
X
Xa
X
X
Xa
Xa
TABLE 3C (cont’d)
Migratory Birds of Conservation Concern Within the Vicinity of the Atlantic Coast Pipeline and Supply Header Projects
Atlantic Coast Pipeline
Common Name
(Scientific name)
Red Crossbill
(Loxia curvirostra)
Red-headed Woodpecker
(Melanerpes erythrocephalus)
BCR Region
Listed In
28
27, 28
West
Virginia
Virginia
Mature coniferous
forests.
X
X
Deciduous woodlands
often with groves of
dead or dying trees.
X
X
Nesting Habitat
27
Rusty Blackbird
(Euphagus carolinus)
27, 28, 29
Wet forests.
Saltmarsh Sparrow
(Ammodramus caudacutus)
27
Salt marshes.
X
Seaside Sparrow
(Ammodramus maritimus)
27
Salt marshes.
X
Dry tundra areas.
Dense tall sedges and
grasses in wet meadows,
hayfields, and marshes.
Xa
Xa
Xa
Sedge Wren
(Cistothorus platensis)
27, 28, 29
Short-billed Dowitcher
(Limnodromus griseus)
27
Muskegs of taiga to
timberline.
Short-eared Owl
(Asio flammeus)
29
Open country, including
prairies, meadows,
marshes, and open
woodland.
Swainson's Warbler
(Limnothlypis swainsonii)
Pennsylvania
West
Virginia
X
X
X
X
Xa
Xa
Xa
Red Knot
(Calidris canutus rufa)
Snowy Egret
(Egretta thula)
Supply Header Project
North
Carolina
Xa
Xa
Xa
None project
crosses
Thick vegetation in
isolated places such as
dredge-spoil islands,
swamps, and marshes.
X
27, 28, 29
Southern forests with
thick undergrowth.
X
Xa
Xa
Xa
X
Upland Sandpiper
(Bartramia longicauda)
27, 28
Native prairie and other
dry grasslands.
X
Wood Thrush
(Hylocichla mustelina)
27, 28, 29
Mature deciduous and
mixed forests.
X
X
X
X
X
Worm-eating Warbler
(Helmitheros vermivorum)
28
Mature deciduous or
mixed deciduousconiferous forest with
patches of dense
understory.
X
X
X
X
X
Yellow-bellied Sapsucker
(Sphyrapicus varius)
28
Various forested habitats
and often young forests
with edge habitat,
especially areas
regenerating from timber
harvesting.
X
X
Yellow Rail
(Coturnicops noveboracensis)
27
Shallow marshes and
wet meadows.
Xa
____________________
Notes:
a
Species does not breed in state; wintering or migrating populations only.
Source: IPaC October 2014
3C-3
Xa