ESI is familiar with the state and federal regulatory agency personnel and regulations that apply to aquatic organisms, particularly with respect to threatened and endangered species. We excel at combining our expertise in river ecology and life history with various riverine construction, operation, and management methods to provide our clients with creative solutions that are readily accepted by regulatory agencies.
Our philosophy is that development and the environment can be balanced in a manner that permits economic growth without adverse impacts. Our goal is to develop and manage common sense approaches to environmental concerns. With our extensive knowledge and equipment resources we provide results that are reliable, consistent, and easily interpreted and approved by regulatory agencies.
ESI provides biological aquatic inventory surveys of freshwater mussels, fish, and macro-invertebrates. We have experience in designing surveys in small and large systems for various clients' in-stream construction and dredging permit needs. ESI also provides services for federal and state agencies. Aquatic inventory services include species identification (including federal and state threatened and endangered species), faunal distribution mapping, formal technical report preparation, and economically feasible mitigation to meet regulatory requirements.
Underwater Aquatic Surveys
Most freshwater mussel surveys in medium and large rivers require diving. ESI's highly trained dive staff is committed to integrity, safety and teamwork: characteristics evident in every ESI dive operation. Safety is the primary concern of any reputable Dive Team. ESI is a member company of the Association of Diving Contractors International (ADCI). We also meet or exceed the US Army Corps of Engineers and OSHA regulations for commercial diving. All dive team members have First Responder training in First Aid and CPR as well as Oxygen Administration.
Although our surface supplied air system is ESI's preferred method of diving, some situations call for more portable solutions. ESI has all of the SCUBA and communications equipment necessary to safely meet diving objectives when surface supplied air is not an option. Divers and biologists are certified Rescue Divers through PADI (Professional Association of Diving Instructors).
ESI conducts fisheries surveys in rivers, streams, lakes, and ponds. Available equipment includes boat mounted, tote barge, and backpack electrofishing units, as well as nets (hoop nets, gill nets, and seines).
Training and Workshops
ESI conducts training in freshwater mussel identification and sampling techniques. Ms. Dunn is an instructor for USFWS National Conservation Training Center’s course Conservation Biology of Freshwater Mussels. Training for clients is tailored to regional protocols and fauna.
ESI surveys and reports always consider legal implications. We provide clients (both government and private industry) with defensible data and expert testimony when needed.