Code of Virginia

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Code of Virginia
Title 29.1. Wildlife, Inland Fisheries and Boating
Chapter 5. Wildlife and Fish Laws

§ 29.1-579. Wildlife Corridor Action Plan; adoption.

A. The Department, in collaboration with the Department of Transportation and the Department of Conservation and Recreation, shall create a Wildlife Corridor Action Plan.

B. The Plan shall:

1. Identify wildlife corridors, existing or planned barriers to movement along such corridors, and areas with a high risk of wildlife-vehicle collisions. The Plan shall list habitat that is identified as of high quality for priority species and ecosystem health; migration routes of native, game, and migratory species using the best available science and Department surveys, including landscape-scale data from the ConserveVirginia database or a similar land conservation strategy database maintained by the Department of Conservation and Recreation; lands containing a high prevalence of existing human barriers, including roads, dams, power lines, and pipelines; areas identified as of high risk of wildlife-vehicle collisions; habitat identified by the Department as being occupied by rare or at-risk species; and habitat identified as Critical Habitat under the federal Endangered Species Act of 1973, P.L. 93-205, as amended.

2. Prioritize and recommend wildlife crossing projects intended to promote driver safety and wildlife connectivity. The Plan shall describe each such project and include descriptions of wildlife crossing infrastructure or other mitigation techniques recommended to meet Plan goals.

3. Contain maps utilizing the ConserveVirginia public portal, or a similar land conservation strategy public portal maintained by the Department of Conservation and Recreation, and other relevant state databases that detail high-priority areas for wildlife corridor infrastructure and any other information necessary to meet the goals of the Plan.

C. The Secretary of Natural Resources and the Secretary of Transportation shall jointly submit the Plan to the Chairs of the House Committee on Agriculture, Chesapeake and Natural Resources and the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Conservation and Natural Resources no later than September 1, 2022, and shall jointly submit an updated version of the Plan every four years thereafter.

2020, cc. 323, 672.

The chapters of the acts of assembly referenced in the historical citation at the end of this section may not constitute a comprehensive list of such chapters and may exclude chapters whose provisions have expired.