Encounters with Species

If California least terns are observed, the USFWS-Approved Biologist or Project Proponent will notify the USFWS within 1 day of the observation, and a Qualified Biologist will monitor all construction activities conducted adjacent to suitable nesting habitat. In addition, if project activities must occur during the nesting season, the Project Proponent will implement an 800-foot disturbance buffer between noise-generating project activities and occupied or assumed occupied California least tern habitat. Noise buffer distances may be modified in coordination with the USFWS Field Office based on project specific characteristics or a Project Proponent/Action Agency may choose to submit their own analysis and buffer recommendations for USFWS consideration. If sufficient buffers cannot be implemented, the proposed activities may lead to adverse effects, not to exceed the self-imposed take limit of no lethal take. The local USFWS Field Office and Project Proponent will work together during the ESA Section 7(a)(2) Review Form process to ensure an individual project does not adversely affect a significant portion of a tern colony. No net loss of habitat through implementation of protection measures and/or offsetting impacts with habitat restoration or enhancement.