My Northern Wisconsin

Covering Ashland, Iron, Lincoln, Oneida, Price, Rusk, Sawyer, Taylor, and Vilas Counties


The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) proposes to issue a permit for the "incidental taking" of a rare turtle in Ashland County, which may result from the Bad River Meander Stabilization Project.

Incidental take refers to the unintentional loss of individual endangered or threatened animals or plants that does not put the species' overall population at risk.

Enbridge Energy, Limited Partnership (Enbridge) plans to protect approximately 390 feet (approximately 0.24 acres) of the Bad River shoreline in Ashland County, Wisconsin. The shoreline to be protected is an area where erosion naturally occurs and is where the riverbank is closest to Line 5.

The primary transportation equipment will consist of a helicopter to transport and install trees at the site, and boat/pontoon and trucks/UTVs to transport personnel and tools. To minimize potential impacts associated with access, Enbridge will use pre-existing roads, the Line 5 corridor and an existing trail that are routinely traveled. Prior to installation of the tree revetment, Enbridge will use a small excavator operating within the Bad River to remove debris located along the shoreline. To isolate the excavator within the Bad River, Enbridge will install a temporary dam using an aqua-dam.

The presence of the state threatened wood turtle is confirmed in the vicinity of the project site. DNR staff determined that the proposed project may result in the incidental taking of some turtles.

The DNR concludes that the proposed project is not likely to appreciably reduce the likelihood of the survival or recovery of the species within the state, the whole plant-animal community of which it is a part of or the habitat that is critical to its existence.

Conservation measures to minimize the adverse effect on the endangered species will be incorporated into the proposed Incidental Take Permit. Copies of the jeopardy assessment and background information on the wood turtle are available upon request from DNR Conservation Biologist Stacy Rowe.

The public is encouraged to submit written comments regarding project-related impacts to the wood turtle by Dec. 15, 2023 to:

Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources
c/o Stacy Rowe, DNR Conservation Biologist
2514 Morse St. Janesville, WI 53545 or 608-228-9796

Contributed by:  Wisconsin DNR