Portland, Ore.—Look for bears on the coast, hike to a lake in the high Cascades during fish stocking, tour endangered Columbian white-tailed deer habitat or feed the elk at a wildlife area. It’s all part of the Oregon Wildlife Heritage Foundation and Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife’s new program, Firsthand Oregon.
The outdoor program allows participants to get a firsthand look at the state’s fish, wildlife and habitats and learn what it takes to keep them healthy. Field-science and management concepts as they relate to the state’s natural resources will be discussed.
“Our fish and wildlife face a variety of challenges,” said Tim Greseth, OWHF Executive Director. “In order to successfully meet their needs in a changing world, we need citizens who know about our state's native species."
“Firsthand Oregon lets people get out in the field with a biologist for a close-up look at the state’s fish and wildlife,” said Chris Wheaton, ODFW Northwest Region Manager. “There is no better way to learn than to work alongside one of our biologists for a day.”
The program is free. Registration is required. Participants should expect to encounter varied field conditions and be able to provide their own transportation to the tour site. Group size varies from six to 20, and trips run from July through December. All July trips are open to the general public. Foundation Members have until July 7 to join future trips, after which time all trips are open to the public. Register online at Oregon Wildlife Heritage Foundation’s website, http://www.owhf.org/firsthandoregon, or call Tim Greseth, (503) 255-6059.
The Oregon Wildlife Heritage Foundation champions projects that benefit fish, wildlife, and habitat for access, education and enjoyment by all. Since its founding, OWHF has directed millions of dollars in funding to fish, wildlife and habitat projects throughout the state.
OWHF and ODFW are working together to implement the Oregon Conservation Strategy, a blueprint and action plan for the long-term conservation of Oregon’s native fish and wildlife and their habitats. Learn more on ODFW’s website, www.dfw.state.or.us.