The California Department of Fish and Wildlife is issuing a permit to Arcadis U.S., Inc. pursuant to Fish and Game Code section 2081(a) for a project to outplant Ventura Marsh milkvetch (astragalus pycnostachyus var. lanosissimus) plants that have been propagated at the Santa Barbara Botanic Garden at the two experimental introduction sites. Two hundred plants will be placed at each site. Each plant will be assigned a unique identification number and a numbered stake, and will be mapped using a global positioning system receiver (GPS). Plants will receive surface drip irrigation during the establishment period, and will be maintained and monitored for ten years. Maintenance activities will include weed control, supplemental irrigation, and pest control. Site visits will be conducted every two weeks during the first month following planting, with monthly visits for the remaining eleven months of the first year. During subsequent years, monitoring will be conducted monthly during the growing season and at least every other month when plants are dormant. Population size, age class (recruits, juveniles, adults) and percent weed cover will be monitored.
The project will facilitate the recovery of the California endangered Ventura Marsh milkvetch by attempting to establish additional self-sustaining populations of the species within its historic range. The permit issued by the California Department of Fish and Wildlife for the Project includes measures to ensure that existing populations of Ventura Marsh milkvetch are not impacted, and that re-introduced populations are adequately protected. The Project is being undertaken as a research project, and will consist of planting and other experimental management activities and scientific reporting of results. The activities are expected to have a net conservation benefit, and are not expected to result in a serious or major disturbance to any environmental resource.