Branch of Conservation Planning
Midwest Region

See the Refuge Website for Current Information!

The CCP and Appendix E maps shown on this website do not reflect any modifications that may have been made since the CCP was approved in 2006. CCPs are long-term plans, and we expect to revise them in light of additional habitat planning, wildlife monitoring and other factors.

Maps, hunting zones, and recreation regulations may have changed since the CCP was approved. See the Refuge's website for current information:
http://www.fws.gov/midwest/UpperMississippiRiver

See the CCP and FEIS/CCP

The comprehensive conservation plan and the Final EIS/CCP are provided here in portable document format (pdf). To see files, you need Acrobat Reader software, and it is available for free on the Adobe website.

See the CCP

Full CCP (7.6 MB)

Text-only Version of the Full CCP (1.4 MB)

By Chapter:

Approval Page (16 KB)
Acknowledgements (24 KB)
Executive Summary (203 KB)
Table of Contents (109 KB)
Chapter 1: Introduction and Planning Background (803 KB)
Chapter 2: Consultation and Coordination with the Public and Others (381 KB)
Chapter 3: Refuge Environment (2.5 MB)
Chapter 3 as a text-only document (591 KB)
Chapter 4: Management Direction (1.5 MB)
Chapter 5: Plan Implementation ()
Appendix A: Record of Decision (398 KB)
Appendix B: Glossary (40 KB)
Appendix C: Project Features Tables (80 KB)
Appendix D: Applicable Laws and Executive Orders (46 KB)

Appendix E: Maps Showing CCP Actions
Legend
Pool 4 (332 KB)
Pool 5 (297 KB)
Pool 5A (315 KB)
Pool 6 (281 KB)
Pool 7 (310 KB)
Pool 8 (333 KB)
Pool 9 (271 KB)
Pool 10 (244 KB)
Pool 11 (231 KB)
Pool 12 (217 KB)
Pool 13 (277 KB)
Pool 14 (231 KB)

Appendix F: Literature Cited (51 KB)
Appendix G: National Wildlife Refuge System Policy Changes (31 KB)


See the Final EIS

Final EIS/CCP (10.4 MB)

Text-only version Final EIS/CCP (4.5 MB)

Summary of Changes to Alternative E (July 2006) (1.8 MB)

By Chapter:

Dear Reader (30 KB)
Abstract (22 KB)
Readers' Guide (26 KB)
Table of Contents (121 KB)
Summary FEIS (1 MB)
Chapter 1: Introduction, Purpose and Need, Planning Background (869 KB)
Chapter 2: Alternatives, Including the Proposed Action (1.2 MB)
Chapter 3: Affected Environment (1.8 MB)
Chapter 4: Environmental Consequences (792 KB)
Chapter 5: List of Preparers (33 KB)
Chapter 6: Consultation and Coordination with the Public and Others (56 KB)
Chapter 7: Public Comment on the Draft EIS/CCP and the Supplement (Alternative E) and Response (6 MB); text-only version (300 KB)
Chapter 8: References (54 KB)
Appendix A: Glossary (38 KB)
Appendix B: Initialisms and Acronyms (26 KB)
Appendix C: Legislation Establishing the Upper Mississippi River NW&FR (560 KB)
Appendix D: Applicable Laws and Executive Orders (46 KB)
Appendix E: Compatibility Determinations (28 KB)
Appendix F: Cooperative Agreement with Corps of Engineers (737 KB)
Appendix G: Land Acquisition Maps (1.5 MB)
Appendix H: Project Features Tables (221 KB)
Appendix I: Current Hunting Regulations (35 KB)
Appendix J: Public Use Regulations (35 KB)
Appdendix K: animal and Plant Species Lists (217 KB)
Appendix L: Plan Implementation (129 KB)
Appendix M: Distribution List (19 KB)
Appendix N: Example of Environmental Pool Plans (383 KB)
Appendix O: Vegetation Classification System Reference and Sample (166 KB)

Appendix P: Maps of Management Alternatives
Alternative A: No Action (Current Direction):
Pool 4, Pool 5, Pool 5A, Pool 6, Pool 7, Pool 8, Pool 9, Pool 10, Pool 11, Pool 12, Pool 13, Pool 14
Alternative B: Wildlife Focus:
Pool 4, Pool 5, Pool 5A, Pool 6, Pool 7, Pool 8, Pool 9, Pool 10, Pool 11, Pool 12, Pool 13, Pool 14
Alternative C: Public Use Focus:
Pool 4, Pool 5, Pool 5A, Pool 6, Pool 7, Pool 8, Pool 9, Pool 10, Pool 11, Pool 12, Pool 13, Pool 14
Alternative D: Wildlife and Integrated Public Use Focus:
Pool 4, Pool 5, Pool 5A, Pool 6, Pool 7, Pool 8, Pool 9, Pool 10, Pool 11, Pool 12, Pool 13, Pool 14
Alternative E: Modified Wildlife and Integrated Public Use Focus:
Pool 4, Pool 5, Pool 5A, Pool 6, Pool 7, Pool 8, Pool 9, Pool 10, Pool 11, Pool 12, Pool 13, Pool 14

Appendix Q: Waterfowl Hunting Closed Areas History, Description, Background and Rationale for Alternative E (234 KB)
Appendix R: Electric Motor Areas and Slow, No Wake Areas: Background, Descriptions, and rationale for Alternative E (72 KB)

Upper Mississippi River National Wildlife
and Fish Refuge
Comprehensive Conservation PlanCover of the Upper Mississippi River NWFR CCP

Comprehensive Conservation Plan Completed
Next Steps
Record of Decision Signed
Final EIS/CCP
The Refuge
For More Information
Where Are We in the Planning Process?
Compatibility Determinations

Comprehensive Conservation Plan Completed

The completion of a stand-alone version of the Comprehensive Conservation Plan (CCP) concludes the 4-year comprehensive conservation planning process for the Upper Mississippi River NW&FR. The document includes the CCP elements of the Final Environmental Impact Statement / Comprehensive Conservation Plan (FEIS), which was completed in July 2006. The stand-alone CCP is available on this website. A news release on the CCP was issued November 22, 2006.

Why a stand-alone version? The FEIS integrates the requirements of both environmental documentation and comprehensive conservation planning, making it a very detailed and long document. In order for the comprehensive conservation plan to be an accessible working document for Refuge staff, as well as a clear description of Refuge management direction for others, we pulled it out into a separate, stand-alone document. Other than minor edits or needed explanatory information, there is no new text -- every chapter and appendix has been taken from the FEIS.

Next Steps

Refuge staff will be implementing the Comprehensive Conservation Plan based on timetables identified in the plan. Information on any ongoing efforts, such as preparation of step-down plans and associated public meetings, will be provided as needed on the Refuge's website at:
http://www.fws.gov/midwest/UpperMississippiRiver

Record of Decision Signed

The Record of Decision for the FEIS was signed by Robyn Thorson, Regional Director of the Midwest Region of the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, on August 24, 2006. Thorson selected the preferred alternative, Alternative E: Modified Wildlife and Integrated Public Use, as the management direction for Upper Mississippi River NW&FR. (See the August 24, 2006, news release.)

The ROD is available in portable document format (pdf) on this website.

Final EIS/CCP

In July 2006, the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (Service) released the Final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) and Comprehensive Conservation Plan (CCP). The plan will guide management and administration of the 240,000-acre, multi-state refuge for the next 15 years.

The preferred alternative in the FEIS, Alternative E: Modified Wildlife and Integrated Public Use Focus, seeks to balance the needs of fish and wildlife with the needs of the public for recreation. All current public uses on the Refuge will continue, although the plan outlines several areas or zones where means of access and use would be affected.

Alternative E was developed in response to comments received on the Draft EIS/CCP in the summer of 2005 and was released for public comment in December 2005. In the Final EIS/CCP, Alternative E reflects many changes from the Draft EIS/CCP released in May 2005 and the Supplement to the Draft EIS/CCP. These changes are outlined in a Summary of Major Changes to the FEIS.

The Upper Mississippi River NW&FR

The Upper Mississippi River National Wildlife and Fish Refuge stretches along the Mississippi River and includes Districts in Minnesota, Iowa, Wisconsin and Illinois. The Refuge is part of the Upper Mississippi River National Wildlife Refuge Complex, which also includes Trempealeau National Wildlife Refuge in Wisconsin and Driftless Area National Wildlife Refuge in Iowa.

Established in 1924, the 240,000-acre Upper Mississippi River National Wildlife and Fish Refuge covers 261 miles of the River valley from Wabasha, Minnesota, to Rock Island, Illinois. The Refuge is divided into four districts, the Savanna District, the Winona District, the McGregor District, and the LaCrosse District.

The Refuge includes broad pools, islands, braided channels, extensive bottomland forest, floodplain marshes and occasional sand prairie. These habitats are critical to mammals, waterfowl, songbirds and raptors, amphibians and reptiles. More than 160 Bald Eagle nests and a yearly average of 15 active Heron colonies with a total of 5,000 nests exist on the Refuge. The Refuge and the River support 119 fish species that support a strong commercial and recreational fishery.

For More Information

A great deal of information on the Refuge and each Refuge District is available by following the links in the previous section. For additional information, call the Refuge at 888/291-5719.

Where Are We in the Planning Process?

These are the steps that the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service follows in comprehensive conservation planning; the step that the Upper Mississippi River NWR has reached is highlighted:

  1. Preplanning: Plan the Plan
  2. Initiate Public Involvement and Scoping
  3. Review Vision Statement and Goals and Determine Significant Issues
  4. Develop and Analyze Alternatives, Including the Proposed Action
  5. Prepare a Draft CCP and NEPA (National Environmental Policy Act) Document
  6. Prepare and Adopt Final CCP
  7. Implement Plan, Monitor and Evaluate
  8. Review and Revise the Plan

Compatibility Determinations

In accordance with the Refuge Improvement Act of 1997, no uses for which the Service has authority to regulate may be allowed on a unit of Refuge System unless it is determined to be compatible. A compatible use is a use that, in the sound professional judgment of the refuge manager, will not materially interfere with or detract from the fulfillment of the National Wildlife Refuge System mission or the purposes of the national wildlife refuge. Managers must complete a written compatibility determination for each use, or collection of like-uses, that is signed by the manager and the Regional Chief of Refuges in the respective Service region.

The following compatibility determinations were prepared as part of the planning process for Upper Mississippi River NW&FR:

Archeological investigations and surveys
Beach-related uses (swimming, sunbathing, picnicking, and other)
Boating with motor-driven watercraft, snowmobiling
Camping
Canoeing, kayaking, and sailing
Commercial fishing (including mussel and turtle harvest)
Dog exercising and training
Environmental education
Farming
Fishing, recreational
Fishing floats, commercial
Fishing tournaments
Fruits of the soil harvest
Grazing
Guided fishing
Guided hunting
Guided wildlife observation
Haying
Hunting, migratory bird
Hunting, big game, upland game, furbearer
Interpretation, wildlife observation, and photography
Research
Sediment removal
Special events, non-Refuge sponsored
Temporary work outside of existing rights-of-way
Trapping of furbearers
Tree harvest

Last updated: June 3, 2016
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