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Working Sites

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The Working Sites page consists of potential IBA sites in various degrees of completion. Sites are divided into three areas of the state--West Tennessee, Middle Tennessee, and East Tennessee. Each site is designated as proposed, nominated, in review, or disapproved.

    A proposed site is one that has been suggested, but has not been nominated. You are encouraged to nominate these and add new sites. Contact the Tennessee State Ornithologist to let the person know of your intentions to nominate a site and to add new sites.
    A nominated site is one on which someone is working and is considered a work-in-progress. Additional documentation is always welcomed and frequently needed to justify the site as an IBA. Click on the link of a nominated site to see what has been submitted and how to contact the submitting nominator.
    An in review site is one that has been submitted to the Technical Committee (TC) for consideration as a Tennessee IBA.
    A disapproved site is one that the Technical Committee considers does not meet the criteria for a Tennessee IBA status at this time or more documentation is needed.
    An approved site is one that has been approved by the Technical Committee as a Tennessee IBA. You can access these sites at IBA Sites. For all other site categories, see below.

West Tennessee.
    Cypress Grove Nature Park [proposed] - The park and surrounding cypress habitat in and around the city of Jackson should be explored for potential IBA status. The area lends itself to containing threshold level criteria because of the rare cypress habitat. There is a Jackson Christmas Bird Count and TWRA's South Fork Refuge. The waterfowl on the Jackson CBC (Mark Greene--compiler, magreene@usit.net) are mainly at the South Fork Refuge . The current waterfowl threshold may just barely be met. There is little documentation for the area.
    Horns Bluff Refuge [Disapproved] - The TC felt that waterfowl numbers were weak for this area of the state, even though technically it did qualify under waterfowl threshold. Could be included under the proposed J. Clark Akers Wildlife Complex (Upper).
    J. Clark Akers Wildlife Complex (Upper) [Proposed] - C. M. Gooch Wildlife Management Area, Hop-In Refuge, Obion River Wildlife Management Area, and Maness Swamp Refuge should be considered as one IBA site if adequate documentation is available in that they form a contiguous area along the Obion River, Obion River Drainage Canal, and South Fork Obion River. The Horns Bluff Refuge is part of this Complex and could be included with it under an umbrella IBA, but it is not contiguous with it.
    Maness Swamp Refuge [Disapproved] - The TC felt that waterfowl numbers were weak for this area of the state, even though technically it did qualify under the waterfowl threshold. Could be included under the proposed J. Clark Akers Wildlife Complex (Upper).
    Obion/Forked Deer Bottoms [Proposed] - Criteria category would be waterfowl and qualifies for current threshold (December 2005).
    Old Laundry Chimney [Disapproved] - Initially the site was considered as a separate IBA. The TC felt that site did not meet the criteria stated. However, this site resides within the designated umbrella IBA site MAV and thus is part of it.
   
Pickwick Landing State Park [Proposed] - Best criteria categories are gulls and perhaps waterfowl. No work was done on the site due to lack of documentation.
   
Hatchie Scenic River [Proposed] - The Hatchie National Wildlife Refuge and the Hatchie Scenic River to the Lower Hatchie National Wildlife Refuge should be considered as one IBA. However, due to lack of documentation, the Hatchie Scenic River section between the two national wildlife refuges is not included at this time (January 2006).

Middle Tennessee.
    Arnold Air Force Base [Nominated] - Department of Defense approval had not been received (January 2006) for this site. It is definitely an IBA site with its concentration of Henslow's Sparrow, a Tennessee In Need of Management species, grassland habitat, Great Blue Heron heronry, and waterfowl. The site is written. John Lamb, John.Lamb@arnold.af.mil, is the nominator and contact person.
    Big Swan Headwaters Preserve  [Nominated] - A site of great potential but adequate documentation is needed. There are plans for monitoring to acquire this documentation beginning in the spring 2006. Cynthia I. Rohrbach, cynrohr@bellsouth.net, is the nominator and contact person.
    Cheatham Lake Wildlife Management Area [Disapproved] - The majority of the TC felt waterfowl numbers warranted inclusion, though Cliff Swallow data was dated and did not support criterion category. Site failed to receive five votes.
    Cheatham Wildlife Management Area [Proposed] - Overall documentation was lacking but site gets birded especially during Nashville Chapter TOS spring and fall counts. Data needs to be kept separate from rest of party's observations. There is designed area of protection by TWRA for Cerulean Warbler but current (2005) status of use by species is not known. This wma contains 19,735 acres in Cheatham County and thus potentially contains significant habitats for neotropical migrants and breeding species.
    Eagle Creek [Proposed] - Nothing is really known about this site in Wayne County, but because of its size--22,000 acres leased by TWRA, potential exists for IBA status.
    Fort Campbell Military Reservations [Nominated] - Department of Defense approval had not been received (January 2006) for this site. It is definitely an IBA site and is included on the American Birding Conservancy's IBA list. Daniel Moss, dmoss5@earthlink.net, is the nominator and the contact person.
   
Meiser Swamp [Nominated] - Site originally nominated in 1998. No recent documentation available. Habitat may have been compromised.
    Mud Creek Swamp [Nominated] - Site originally nominated in 1998. No recent documentation available. Habitat may have been compromised.
    Old Hickory Lock 5 Refuge [Disapproved] - The majority of the TC felt waterfowl numbers warranted inclusion, but site failed to receive five votes.
    Williamsport Lakes Wildlife Management Area [Disapproved] - The TC felt that more documentation was needed. The site has potential, especially with the criteria of  marsh habitat/marsh species and waterfowl.
    Walls of Jericho [Proposed] - Re-opened to the public December 2003 through its purchase by The Nature Conservancy, this 21,453-acre (8,943 acres in Tennessee, 12,510 acres in Alabama), unique natural area in Franklin County, Tennessee and Jackson County, Alabama, contains rivers, forested uplands, and caves of a diverse array of plants and animals. Area needs to be inventoried for potential IBA status. Cerulean Warbler, a Tennessee In Need of Management, is known to nest in the Alabama section. As of February 2006, The Nature Conservancy hold the title of the Tennessee tract until funding is obtained to transfer it to the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency who is currently leasing and managing the Tennessee portion. The State Natural Areas Program of the Tennessee Department of Environment & Conservation will co-manage 750 acres of the Walls of Jericho and its immediate watershed. The site also will be designated a State Natural Area. Contact is The Nature Conservancy, Gina Hancock, 2021 21st Avenue South, Suite C-400, Nashville, TN 37212, 615-383-9909, ghancock@tnc.org.

East Tennessee.
   
Amnicola Marsh [Proposed] - Current construction (December 2005) and lack of current documentation prevented work on this site.
    Catoosa Wildlife Management Area [Proposed] - This site, owned by TWRA, contains 78,546 acres of mostly wooded habitat on the Cumberland Plateau. It abuts part of the Obed Wild & Scenic River (National Park) IBA site. Outside of point counts, no current documentation was available. This site offers great potential as an IBA because of its location on the Cumberland Plateau and its extensive wooded habitat. Formerly Red-cockaded Woodpecker bred.
   
Eagle Bend Fish Hatchery [Nominated] - More documentation was needed to justify criteria thresholds.
    Kingston Steam Plant [Proposed] - Changing shorebird habitat and pine beetle infestation might have an negative impact on the site. No documentation prevented work  on the site.
    Mossy Creek Wildlife Viewing Area [Nominated] - Additional documentation was needed.
    Pickett State Forest [Proposed] - Contiguous with part of the IBA sites Dale Hollow Lake and the Big South Fork National River and Recreation Area, work should be done to see if there is adequate documentation for inclusion with these sites or to stand as a separate IBA site. See also Standing Stone State Park.
    Seven Islands Wildlife Refuge [Disapproved] - The TC felt that the site had great potential but additional documentation was needed.
    Shady Valley [Proposed] - No documentation was presented, thus, preventing work on this site.
    Standing Stone State Park [Proposed] - Contiguous with part of the IBA sites of Dale Hollow Lake and the Big South Fork National River and Recreation Area, work should be done to see if there is adequate documentation for inclusion with these sites or to stand as a separate IBA site. See also Pickett State Forest.
    Tennessee River Gorge [Proposed] - The Tennessee River Gorge contains 27,000 acres (16,344 acres protected) that is carved through the Cumberland Mountains by 26 miles of the Tennessee River. It is the only large river canyon bordering a mid-size city and is the fourth largest river canyon east of the Mississippi. Lack of current documentation prevented work on this site. See Tennessee River Gorge Trust.
    Watts Bar Reservoir [Proposed] - Possible criteria here would be wintering Bald Eagles but would have to be in the top 2-3 sites in the state to qualify as a criteria as now defined. Waterfowl numbers on Tennessee Mid-Winter Waterfowl Survey 2001-2005 do not qualify, but no survey was listed for 2005. Land waterfowl surveys could exist that were not included in 2005 and for possibly other years. These land waterfowl surveys sometime reflect a higher number of birds using the area than the aerial surveys due to time of day, disturbance, and species make-up. No work was done on the site other than listing of Bald Eagle and waterfowl survey numbers. There is a possibility that wintering Sandhill Cranes might expand into the area from just south of there.

Endangered/Threatened/In Need of Management Species.
   
There seems universally agreed that these lists need updating with a sound, legally defendable basis. The species were referenced in the criteria when the species met the qualifications and included in the Ornithological Importance section where appropriate. In the case of the Bewick’s Wren, Bachman’s Sparrow, Common Raven, and Lark Sparrow,  a small amount of data was available, but not associated with a named site. This data has been preserved under the respective species name. There also is a link in the Criteria For Site Selection for these species. It is recommended that an up-to-date data base be kept on all species listed in these management categories.

Wading Birds.
   
There needs to be set-up a system for finding, inventorying and monitoring of wading birds in Tennessee. They are inadequately represented in the Tennessee IBA program. From scattered field observations, it appears that wading birds are increasing across the state in both overall number of individuals and breeding colonies. See Wading Birds for a working list and comments on various sites in Tennessee.

Waterfowl.
    A more complete and accurate statewide winter waterfowl inventory is need. The Tennessee Mid-Winter Waterfowl Survey is seriously flawed as to its accuracy and under estimation of waterfowl wintering totals. Note that in the IBA program, the customary definition for waterfowl (ducks, geese, and swans) is expanded to include also loons, grebes, cormorants, moorhens, and coots.

This page was last updated on 02/19/06.