Overview: This is a condensed training, an overview, about the Species Status Assessment (SSA) process. The objective is leave course participants with a greater understanding about: what goes into an SSA, the timing and the process, and the components that make up an SSA. This on-line, self-paced course provides the background training to support both Fish and Wildlife Service programs and state agencies. The state partners may choose, not only to participate, or participate more fully, but may also lead an SSA if they so desire. Thus we are committed to help build the capacity across our region so that we can take full advantage of planning and implementing collaborative conservation of species at-risk.
Why are we presenting this overview course? At a regional conservation scale, we are doing this because we want program staff trained because we need your help. You are central to our ability to take advantage of the collaborative conservation opportunities for some of the species in our region. Traditionally this is an ecological services program’s role but we are really expanding this to be a service wide, even outside the service effort.
Think of the SSA Framework this way - The SSA framework allows us to work with partners and other experts to analyze these questions and expressly document these in a report that help us make policy decisions. The basic SSA diagram shows you those three phrases. One: it's an analytical approach and the species need is where we compile information on the life history, ecological relationships, similar to a doctor taking a patient's history if you will, if you want to use that analogy. Two: the species current condition and why it is the way it is. Basically the diagnosis, when you are at the doctor's office. Three: then we project plausible future scenarios and summarize that information and those conditions similar to a doctor's prognosis. The framework allows provides a way to reflect that species biological status through an iterative, versus this look step by step, but a lot of these the interim phases in between or the information that we use and start with and then relook is rather iterative, not quite the step by step approach that might be reflected here.