by Peter Goodwin, Paul Inkenbrandt, Diane Menuz, Hugh Hurlow, and Drew Dittmer
Wetlands in the Snake Valley of central Utah provide crucial habitat for several wildlife species identified by the State of Utah as Species of Greatest Conservation Need (SGCN), including Least Chub (Iotichthys phlegethontis) and Columbia Spotted Frog (Rana luteiventris). Snake Valley wetlands and their ability to support these species have been threatened by proposed and ongoing groundwater development projects. In 2009, the Utah Geological Survey installed a network of shallow wells to collect baseline hydrologic data in several Snake Valley wetlands. In this report, we summarize hydrologic monitoring efforts, the current state of the monitoring network, and available hydrologic, climate and species data. We also identify long-term hydrologic trends at several Snake Valley wetlands, as well as long-term climate trends and changes in species populations. Finally, we provide recommendations to continue funding and operating the monitoring network as well as other hydrologic studies that may better illuminate the relationships between groundwater height, hydrologic conditions, and SGCN populations.
36 p., 2 appendices,