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  • AASHE-STARS

The Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System™ (STARS) is a transparent, self-reporting framework for colleges and universities to measure their sustainability performance.

Overall Rating Bronze
Overall Score 41.99
Liaison Eva Rocke
Submission Date June 30, 2017
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

University of Montana
OP-10: Biodiversity

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.00 / 2.00 Eva Rocke
ASUM Sustainability Coordinator
ASUM
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution own or manage land that includes or is adjacent to legally protected areas, internationally recognized areas, priority sites for biodiversity, and/or regions of conservation importance?:
Yes

A brief description of the legally protected areas, internationally recognized areas, priority sites for biodiversity, and/or regions of conservation importance:

UM campus in Missoula includes 600 acres on Mt Sentinel. Mt Sentinel is undeveloped and managed explicitly for biodiversity and conservation values.  There are no threatened or endangered species on the site, but most of the UM owned acreage is “intermountain grassland,” also sometimes called “Palouse Prairie,” which is increasingly rare due to development, agriculture and invasive species.


Has the institution conducted an assessment or assessments to identify endangered and vulnerable species (including migratory species) with habitats on institution-owned or –managed land?:
Yes

Has the institution conducted an assessment or assessments to identify environmentally sensitive areas on institution-owned or –managed land?:
Yes

The methodologies used to identify endangered and vulnerable species and/or environmentally sensitive areas (including most recent year assessed) and any ongoing assessment and monitoring mechanisms:

UM campus in Missoula includes 600 acres on Mt Sentinel. Mt Sentinel is undeveloped and managed explicitly for biodiversity and conservation values.  There are no threatened or endangered species on the site, but most of the UM owned acreage is “intermountain grassland,” also sometimes called “Palouse Prairie,” which is increasingly rare due to development, agriculture and invasive species.  Mt Sentinel is assessed on an ongoing basis every spring and fall by visual assessment (there are long term monitoring plots too, but we lack funding to collect and manage the data).


A brief description of identified species, habitats and/or environmentally sensitive areas:

The grassland on the face of Mt Sentinel is dominated by bluebunch wheatgrass and rough fescue.  There are shrub patches that provide important nesting sites for migratory songbirds.  The top of the mountain includes Ponderosa pine forest that are negatively impacted by fire suppression (which leads to overgrowth of Douglas fir, suppression of understory plant diversity and increased disease).


A brief description of plans or programs in place to protect or positively affect identified species, habitats and/or environmentally sensitive areas:

Per state and county law, we control invasive plants using a combination of herbicides, biocontrol insects, manual removal, revegetation with native plants, and ongoing education to prevent new infestations.  Per state law, we update the weed management plan every 6 years in collaboration with the Missoula County Weed District.  In cooperation with adjacent landowners (including the City of Missoula and Department of Natural Resources and Conservation) we are implementing a thinning program to promote forest health.


The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:

Marilyn Marler- UM Natural Areas Specialist, Division of biological Sciences
E-mail: marilyn.marler@mso.umt.edu
Phone: (406) 544-7189

The information presented here is self-reported. While AASHE staff review portions of all STARS reports and institutions are welcome to seek additional forms of review, the data in STARS reports are not verified by AASHE. If you believe any of this information is erroneous or inconsistent with credit criteria, please review the process for inquiring about the information reported by an institution and complete the Data Inquiry Form.