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On the Ground: The Oregon Conservation Strategy at Work


Oregonians concerned with conservation of fish, wildlife and habitats aren’t taking any time off in November. Together, we continue to communicate the goals of the Strategy, confident that the conversations we are having now will result in many more on-the-ground projects in the new year.


Turtles at Risk
Caution: Deer Crossing
The Nature Conservancy Honors Conservation Heroes
ODFW and DSL Hunt Rabbits
Where Butterflies are Free to Fly
Strategy-Related Tools
Teaming with Wildlife Summit Slated


Turtles have been on the planet for eons and feature prominently in the myths and stories of many cultures. Unfortunately, today, populations of the western painted turtle and the western pond turtle have declined in Oregon. These native turtles face the greatest problems in the Willamette Valley.

Turtles have reached this vulnerable status for a number of reasons including loss of wetlands, illegal collection by people, interference by non-native turtles, loss of nesting sites and predation by bullfrogs and other non-native predators. A new website sponsored by the Oregon Zoo and partners provides information to Oregonians on how to conserve native turtles. Visit


The ODFW and ODOT Wildlife Movement workgroup has identified deer and elk movement as a statewide priority—and for good reason. According to ODOT statistics, over the last five years, there were about 2,400 vehicle accidents involving wildlife, resulting in 666 people being injured and 10 deaths.

The workgroup is now assessing available data to determine priority movement areas across the landscape. ODOT is collating roadkill data. ODFW is identifying a suite of focal species for mapping, modeling, and monitoring efforts. In addition to deer and elk, this suite of focal species includes several species already identified as priorities in the Conservation Strategy.

If you are interested in participating in this effort, contact Audrey Hatch, ODFW,or Melinda Trask, ODOT.


The Nature Conservancy honored Oregon’s “conservation heroes” at its annual Conservation Leadership Awards luncheon in October. ODFW received the group’s Community Partner Conservation Leadership Award for many years of collaborative partnerships and projects; a special recognition was given to the Oregon Conservation Strategy and Nearshore Strategy. Cathy Macdonald, director of Oregon Conservation Programs for The Nature Conservancy, presented the award to ODFW Director Virgil Moore.

In his keynote address, “Conservation in the 21st Century,” Steven J. McCormick, president and CEO of The Nature Conservancy, shared an ambitious agenda for conservation worldwide. Based on scientific assessment of global ecosystems, the plan is a visionary strategy to protect Earth’s diversity of life for future generations.

For more information, visit The Nature Conservancy website.



ODFW Biologist Chris Carey spent several days last month searching for pygmy rabbits on state lands near Adel in Lake County. He and Randy Weist, a range technician with the Department of Land Services, are working on a range restoration project to help conserve this Strategy species. Chris found evidence of active and inactive burrow systems in several areas. Weist plans to buffer some of the high priority rabbit sites and is looking at other options to ensure their conservation.

More information on pygmy rabbits



The Greenbelt Land Trust, whose goal is to enhance and protect native habitats and natural areas in the mid-Willamette Valley, is currently involved in a Strategy-related project funded, in part, by the ODFW Landowner Incentive Program (LIP).

Lupine Meadows, located near Philomath, contains approximately 20 acres of rare upland prairie habitat and 40 acres of riparian and wetland prairie habitat. This unique site contains several endangered species dependent upon the prairies, including Kincaid lupine, Fender’s blue butterfly and Nelson’s checkermallow. Work is focused on removing unwanted vegetation and invasive grasses. Philomath High School students and staff at the Institute for Applied Ecology are growing and planting seedlings of the suite of rare plants appropriate for this site.

More information:

Fender’s blue butterfly

Kincaid lupine

Greenbelt Land Trust


The non-regulatory, voluntary approach of the Strategy relies on effectively providing market-based tools for conservation. Some aspects of this—conservation banking, trading programs and development of market opportunities that enhance fish and wildlife conservation—will be addressed in a conference co-sponsored by the USDA Forest Service, PNW Research Station and the Western Forestry and Conservation Association. Ecosystem Services: Market Incentives for Land Stewardship will be held on Jan. 18, 2007 in Vancouver, Washington.
For more information contact Bob Deal, 503-808-2015, or visit

Defenders of Wildlife offers a new report titled Incentives for Biodiversity Conservation: An Ecological and Economic Assessment (pdf). It is packed with information on a broad range of incentive programs with recommendations as to how they might be strengthened to do a better job conserving biodiversity. Link to the report:

For more information contact David Tucker


The Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies (AFWA) will host a Teaming with Wildlife Summit in Washington, DC, February 27-March 1, 2007. Participants will meet to strategize about how the state’s renewed coalitions can pursue increased funding for wildlife conservation. ODFW will send a representative to the meeting. We are hopeful one or more of Oregon’s coalition members will be able to attend.

Currently, Oregon has 110 Teaming With Wildlife coalition members, bringing the national Coalition to 4657. For more information, contact Martin Nugent or visit


Thank you for your interest and support.
Holly Michael, Conservation Strategy Coordinator
Meg Kenagy, Editor and Strategy Media Coordinator

Contact Information

Meg Kenagy
Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife




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