Ensuring the future of elk, other wildlife, their habitat and our hunting heritage.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Landscape-Scale Habitat, Elk Research, Other Oregon Projects Funded by RMEF Grants

Below is a complete listing of the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation’s 2016 grants for the state of Oregon. Find more information here.

Benton County—Provide RMEF volunteers and co-sponsor 14th annual Youth Outdoor Day at E.E. Wilson Wildlife Area, an outdoor education and recreation event for kids ages 5 to 14 that offers instruction about conservation of habitat, hunting, fishing and the great outdoors.

Cook County—Provide funding to assist in thinning 213 acres of juniper and seeding seven miles of closed roads to benefit winter elk, mule deer and pronghorn winter range in the Paulina Ranger District of the Ochoco National Forest (also benefits Grant County); provide funding for a 600-acre prescribed burn, reinforcement of 3.75 miles of previously closed unauthorized roads and riparian restoration on 12 acres of critical winter, summer and elk calving and big game migration corridors in the 45,700-acre McKay Watershed on the Ochoco National Forest.

Douglas County—Provide funding to create six acres of new meadows, fertilize 37 more acres of existing openings and mow to regenerate winter browse to benefit elk, black-tailed deer and other wildlife habitat on the Umpqua National Forest.

Grant County—Continue a project aimed at improving important elk winter range and a critical migration corridor between the North Fork John Day Wilderness and the Bridge Creek Wildlife Area by applying noxious weed treatments and planting 200 quaking aspens to benefit elk and other wildlife on 754 acres of private land that allows public hunting; apply prescribed burning to 1,330 acres to improve forage quantity, quality and composition on a portion of the Desolation Winter Range 15 miles south of Ukiah on the Umatilla National Forest; and restore 51 acres of aspen stands/meadow complexes on calving grounds for elk, deer and other wildlife by cutting encroaching conifers, fencing aspen and utilizing prescribed fire to increase aspen recruitment in Summit Creek on the Malheur National Forest.
Harney County—Apply juniper and ponderosa pine thinning, noxious weed and road treatments as well as repairing and protecting 10 water developments across 6,000 acres on the Malheur National Forest to restore aspen, shrub and riparian  habitat to benefit elk and other wildlife in the Central Malheur River and 2007 Egley Wildfire areas

Klamath County—Thin, pile and burn lodgepole pine on 120 acres of calving grounds to continue meadow enhancement within three drainages in the Hemlock Creek Key Elk Area on the Deschutes National Forest; provide funding for the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife’s annual youth pheasant hunt at the Klamath Wildlife Area for approximately 100 youth ages 12-16 (also benefits Lake County); provide funding for equipment for Mazama High School’s National Archery in the Schools program launched the previous year; and provide funding and volunteer manpower for approximately 2,400 children and 1,500 adults from southern Oregon and northern California to attend the fifth annual Promoting Life-Long Activities for Youth (PLAY) Outdoors event.

Lake County—Provide funding for the first of a seven-year landscape-level aspen restoration project within the North Warner Mountains applying thinning and prescribed burning across 11,426 acres of elk calving and summer range on the Fremont-Winema National Forest; and thin encroaching conifers from 1,700 acres within aspen stands on elk calving and summer range in the South Warner Mountains on the Fremont-Winema National Forest as part of a landscape-level aspen restoration project.

Lane County—Provide funding for a combination of herbicide treatments, conifer thinning, seeding and prescribed burning to improve forage for elk on 159 acres of the Willamette National Forest; restore and maintain meadows, ponds, pools and wetlands in 12 big game emphasis areas in the Upper McKenzie River Watershed area on the Willamette National Forest via prescribed burning 49 acres, seeding on 39 acres, reducing encroaching conifers and shrubs on 62 acres and enhancing 15 natural and man-made pools and wetlands (also benefits Linn County); and burn 144 acres and thin 10 acres to improve big game forage on the Middle Fork Ranger District of the Willamette National Forest as part of a multi-year project to restore 1,600 over-stocked, non-commercial size pine plantations to an open pine/oak savannah as per historical conditions.

Morrow County—Replaced 1.5 miles of woven wire fence with 3-strand barbed wire fence with drop-rail wildlife jump sections and vinyl reflective fence markers to benefit migrating big game and other bird and animal life on private land adjacent to the Umatilla National Forest in the foothills of the Blue Mountains.

Tillamook County—Provide funding for RMEF's Tillamook County Chapter to host an elk hunt for a terminally ill youth on Stimson Lumber Company land for the seventh consecutive year.

Umatilla County—Apply thinning and prescribed burning to 70 acres of year-round elk range (15 of the 70 acres also being seeded) to improve forage and regenerate aspen habitat on the Umatilla Indian Reservation in the foothills of the Blue Mountains.

Union County—Provide funding for research at the Starkey Experimental Forest and Range that will offer new information regarding nutritional influences on elk populations to better enable landscape planners and biologists to link habitat conditions as well as changes in conditions to productivity and size of elk herds; apply noxious weed treatments to 647 acres as well as remove four miles of barbed wire fencing and apply pre-commercial thinning of 236 re-forested acres on a RMEF-held conservation easement in the Blue Mountains used as winter and summer range by estimated 500-800 elk; and assist in thinning 327 acres to reduce density of young conifer trees to increase forage for elk on public land within the  Dry Beaver-Ladd Canyon Elk Enhancement Area on the Wallowa-Whitman National Forest as part of a multi-year habitat enhancement project.

Wallowa County—Treat 700 acres as part of an ongoing, integrated weed management program on elk calving grounds, winter and summer range, and migration corridors across federal, state and private lands in the canyons and grasslands of the Grande Ronde and Imnaha River watersheds (also benefits Union County).

Wasco County—Provide funding to assist in thinning confers and then piling and burning slash on 250 acres of elk winter range and migratory habitat on the Barlow Ranger District of the Mount Hood National Forest to improve forage, provide cover and reduce dependency on nearby private agricultural land.

Statewide—Provide funding to help purchase trail cams for the Oregon State Police Fish and Wildlife division in an effort to curtail poaching and other illegal activity; provide funding for food and supplies for volunteers participating in RMEF habitat projects in various parts of the state; and co-sponsor the Oregon 4-H State Shooting Sports Contest for youth age 9-19 from across the state. 

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