NSST 2012-1, Process for Developing the 2012 NAWMP Map – Geographies of Greatest Continental Significance to North American Waterfowl

Document Date
Document Type
NSST 2012-1 NAWMP Map Report Cover


Improved spatial analysis tools and waterfowl population data for many regions of North America prompted refinement of the 2004 NAWMP map depicting areas most significant to waterfowl at the continental scale. The NSST established an 11-member committee to coordinate map revision via Joint Ventures (JVs) and their conservation partners. The committee was not able to develop universal criteria for area inclusion on the NAWMP map, but JVs were required to support proposals with the best quantitative information available. A total of 41 adjustments proposed by 15 habitat and 2 species JVs were approved by the map committee, but quality and reliability of available population data varied considerably among regions and proposals. Despite data limitations, the revised NAWMP map represented material improvements in depicting areas of continental significance to waterfowl. However, given the subjectivity in its development and refinement, the NAWMP map has limited ability to inform conservation decisions. The committee advocates a succeeding effort to develop products for guiding conservation at appropriate scales and addressing the 3 fundamental goals of the 2012 NAWMP Revision. Key decision frameworks must be established to assure resulting maps and decision-support tools are rooted in a clearly defined and accepted context.