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Elk Head CONSERVATION
Native fish, wildlife and their habitat
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Viewing Map
Visit the ODFW Wildlife Viewing Map to learn where and when to see the state’s fish and wildlife.
On the Ground: The Oregon Conservation Strategy at Work

September 2011

The ODFW Wildlife Viewing Map debuted in September, just in time for those interested in getting out to enjoy the fall. Featuring 235 great places to see wildlife in Oregon, it has a site for everyone from accessible platforms to short walks to roadside pullouts to remote hikes.

CONTENTS

Little Oregon Chub Makes Big News
New Publication Offers Tips to Enhance Wildlife Habitat
OHA and USFS Replant Hardwoods in Forest Burn
Plant School is in for High School Students
Discover Where to Watch Wildlife in Oregon
Order Native Plants Now for Spring
One Small Thing

Oregon chub introduction
Biologists Brian Bangs, left, and Paul Scheerer at an Oregon chub introduction site in a recently completed habitat restoration project.
- ODFW Photo -
Click to Enlarge Photo
Oregon chub
The tiny Oregon chub measures less than 3.5 inches in adulthood.
- ODFW Photo -
Click to Enlarge Photo

LITTLE OREGON CHUB MAKES BIG NEWS

July 2011 was a big month for a little threatened fish. In a matter of days, seven new Oregon chub populations were discovered in the Willamette Valley—-three in the North Santiam, two in the McKenzie, and two in the Middle Fork Willamette River basins.
 
“It’s unprecedented for us to discover so many chub populations in such short order,” said Brian Bangs, ODFW Native Fish Investigations biologist. “And every population we find brings us that much closer to recovery of the species.”

ODFW fisheries Biologist Paul Scheerer, who has been working on chub recovery for almost two decades, said success has come from reintroducing the minnows into historic habitat, discovery of new populations and habitat restoration projects. In fact, the landowners where two of the North Santiam populations were recently discovered are working with the USFWS through its Partners for Fish and Wildlife program to enhance habitat on their properties. Three of the other populations will find support through management actions from Lane County Parks and The Nature Conservancy, land managers for the sloughs where the McKenzie populations and one of the Middle Fork Willamette River populations were found.  And, with all of this restoration attention, Bangs and Scheerer expect good things to come for the unique chub.   

For more information: ODFW Oregon Chub; USFWS species fact sheet; Willamette Confluence property

NEW PUBLICATION OFFERS TIPS TO ENHANCE WILDLIFE HABITAT

A new Oregon Forest Research Institute publication, Oregon Forests as Habitat, is available free to forest managers and landowners. The new publication is the fourth in the Wildlife in Managed Forests series which includes Elk, Spotted Owl and Stream-associated Amphibians.

According to Julie Woodward, OFRI program manager and editor of the book, it will prove especially useful to owners of small- and medium-sized forestlands who do not have wildlife biologists on staff.

The book contains a synthesis of recent science findings, as well as case studies highlighting success stories of Oregon’s forest landowners. Using forestry techniques, landowners can shape, enhance and create wildlife habitat for birds, mammals and amphibians while managing lands for timber production.

Each of the four volumes can be ordered at no charge or downloaded in the Facts & Resources section of the OFRI website.

OHA AND USFS REPLANT HARDWOODS IN FOREST BURN

It took more than a month to contain the B&B complex fire that raged in the Central Cascades in the summer of 2003, and when it was over more than 90,000 acres of forestland had been destroyed. Most of the burn is on public land, a good portion of it in the Deschutes National Forest managed by the Sisters Ranger Station.

Wildlife in Managed Forests
Oregon Forests as Habitat is free to forest managers and landowners.
Click to Enlarge

In the eight years since the fire, the U.S. Forest Service has done much to restore the area and to replant the conifer forests, but wildlife biologist Monty Gregg, Sisters Ranger District, had a mind to recreate two of the rare cottonwood stands that had been lost from the area above Suttle Lake.

A few years after the fire, it was clear to Gregg that the large burned out cottonwoods in the Upper Link Creek Basin and along First Creek that had so teamed with wildlife at one time, were not coming back.

“The fire was intense through there and the trees were so old that when roots were damaged, they just didn’t have the resiliency to rejuvenate,” he said.

That’s when he called Rod Adams of the Bend Chapter of the Oregon Hunters Association, to ask for help with funding and planting.

“We’ve worked with Monty a long time and were glad to work on a project so close to home,” said Adams, OHA volunteer coordinator. “And we really wanted to get some hardwoods back in the forest.”

“They were really cool places,” said Gregg. “Before the fire, you could go into those big, old black cottonwood stands with their high canopies. There were lots of birds—grouse and songbirds—and small mammals. The deer and elk would come in and out. It was a great place for them to have fawns and calves. It’s a very nutrient rich riparian area.”

USFS staff and Bend Chapter OHA volunteers planted 2,000 cottonwood and other hardwoods during the first year of the project and 3,000 the second.

“It will take a while for the trees to come back, but things grow fast in the riparian area,” said Gregg. “Within a 10-year period, we should have four- to five-foot trees in there.”

Rod Adams and Monty Gregg
OHA’s Rod Adams, left, and Monty Gregg, Sisters Ranger District wildlife district biologist, look over an area to be planted.
- USFS Photo -
Click to Enlarge Photo
B&B Complex fire
The B&B Complex fire burned during the late summer of 2003.
- USFS Photo -
Click to Enlarge Photo

OHA awarded a $2,500 grant to the Sisters Ranger District in support of the project. Contact: Monty Gregg; Rod Adams

PLANT SCHOOL IS IN FOR HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS

The Institute for Applied Ecology has created a new hands-on high school curriculum called From Salmonberry to Sagebrush: Exploring Oregon’s Native Plants. The curriculumwas created to interest students in botany, a subject often given short shrift in science classes.

“Our objective was to provide educational materials to Oregon teachers that are engaging, fun and relevant,” said Jody Einerson, an IAE educator. “The curriculum is designed to give teachers and natural resource educators the tools to customize lessons for theplace they teach while meeting state education standards.”

The 31 lessons challenge students to explore local plants and their place in the ecosystem with lessons such as, The Secret Life of Flowers; Plant Wars: A Tale of Offense and Defense; and Plants Have Families Too.

Einerson, one of the writers of the curriculum, worked closely with a number of teachers and an advisory council in developing the curriculum.  A number of teachers from high schools across the state piloted lessons during the 2010-11 school year.

IAE is partnering with agencies to provide a series of workshops over the next few months to introduce formal and informal educators to the lessons. Teachers will be given hands on exploration of sample lessons followed by guidelines for adapting the curriculum to their region.  All participants will be given a free copy of the curriculum. Visit the IAE website for a workshop schedule and to view the new curriculum. A limited number of print publications are available for $25, or the curriculum can be downloaded as a PDF.

The USDA Bureau of Land Management and National Fish and Wildlife Foundation contributed funding for the project.  Contact Jody.

DISCOVER WHERE TO WATCH WILDLIFE IN OREGON

ODFW’S Wildlife Viewing Map features 235 great places to see wildlife in the state. People can discover where to see bald eagles, migrating snow geese and sandhill cranes as well as Oregon’s large mammals including black-tailed and mule deer and Rocky Mountain and Roosevelt elk. Tufted puffins, bighorn sheep and spawning salmon viewing sites are included.

Wildlife viewing from birdwatching to tidepooling to mammal and amphibian viewing is a popular recreational activity in the state with about 1.7 million people participating each year. Watching wildlife is also an economic driver: Resident wildlife viewers contributed more than $1 billion to Oregon’s economy in 2008, the most recent year surveyed.

Native plant lessons
Native Plant School: Workshops over the next few months will introduce teachers to the native plant lessons.
- IAE Photo -
Click to Enlarge Photo

The ODFW Wildlife Viewing Map is available on ODFW’s website.

ORDER NATIVE PLANTS NOW FOR SPRING

The Hood River Soil and Water Conservation District is now accepting orders for native trees and shrubs to be picked up in the spring.

“We do this every year as a way to encourage landowners to plant the native species that are useful for watershed benefits,” said Steve Stampfli, Watershed coordinator. “We aren’t trying to generate a profit, we are trying to promote native plants and help people get them in the ground.”

Species offered, photos, descriptions and planting information are available on the Hood River SWCD website

ONE SMALL THING

Could you list 100 ways to use less water? If not, the Water Use it Wisely website can.

PAST ISSUES OF THE NEWSLETTER

On the Ground newsletter archives

ABOUT THE OREGON CONSERVATION STRATEGY

Pronghorn antelope
Pronghorn antelope can be seen at a number of places in Eastern Oregon.
- Photo by Kathy Munsel -

The Oregon Conservation Strategy provides a blueprint and action plan for the long-term conservation of Oregon’s native fish and wildlife and their habitats through a voluntary, statewide approach to conservation. It was developed by ODFW with the help of a diverse coalition of Oregonians including scientists, conservation groups, landowners, extension services, anglers, hunters, and representatives from agriculture, forestry and rangelands.

EDITOR
Meg Kenagy
Oregon Conservation Strategy Communications coordinator
(503) 947-6021
meg.b.kenagy@state.or.us

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