Complimenting the statewide habitat connectivity analysis, we will refine and repeat our analysis process at the ecoregional scale to provide finer scale data that is more applicable to localized planning and to assess the needs of species associated with more patchily distributed habitats and species with limited ranges and smaller movement scales. These species are likely to have important habitat requirements that are not adequately addressed at the statewide scale.
We will conduct similar assessments of one or more ecoregions at a time until all nine ecoregions within Washington have been analyzed. These ecoregional analyses will produce finer resolution products that complement the statewide analysis. Like our statewide analysis, the ecoregional analysis will include habitat beyond Washington’s boundaries in British Columbia, Idaho, and Oregon. These finer scale analysis provide an opportunity for improved transboundary coordination and potential co-ownership of these products with our neighbors. The ecoregional analyses will include considerable outreach to local wildlife and habitat experts and local communities. The subgroup that will lead the analysis for the Full Working Group and under the supervision of our Core Team will reflect this need for localized expertise in the landscape. Ecoregional analyses provide an opportunity to also incorporate climate change into our analysis earlier in the process, and consider additional localized issues such as energy development. Our first ecoregional analysis is complete for the Columbia Plateau.
Due to data challenges across the border, we are exploring a different approach with our transboundary partners in British Columbia for finer scale analyses in the transboundary region.