Tag Archives: Tillamook County

ODFW Details Coastal Travel Management Area Changes For Hunting Season

THE FOLLOWING IS A PRESS RELEASE FROM THE OREGON DEPARTMENT OF FISH AND WILDLIFE

With fall hunting seasons approaching, hunters using travel management areas on the coast are reminded of some changes this season.

(ODFW)

Reminder: Hancock Forest Management NW TMA open year-round incl. fire season (Trask, Stott Mt, Alsea Units)

Over 190,000 acres of Hancock Forest Management (HFM) timberlands are open for year-round hunting access in the Trask, Stott Mt, and Alsea Wildlife Management Units along the mid-coast this year (parts of Lincoln, Benton, Polk, and Tillamook counties). https://www.dfw.state.or.us/maps/access_habitat/stott_mtn_n_alsea_hancock_FM_NW_page1.pdf

https://www.dfw.state.or.us/maps/access_habitat/stott_mtn_n_alsea_hancock_FM_NW_page2.pdf

While HFM properties had allowed hunting access before as part of the Stott Mt/N Alsea TMA, the lands were closed during fire season (typically July 1-Oct. 15). This project is expanding no fee public access during Industrial Fire Restriction Levels (IFPL) I-III.

Effective year round, green dot posted roads (see photos) under HFM control in this area will be open to motorized vehicle use to access larger blocks of their land when the IFPL is below level III. When the IFPL reaches III, only walk-in access is allowed, even on green dot roads. The only time the lands would close is when the IFPL reaches IV, a rare event that requires complete shutdown of forest operations by state rule.

Only roads with green dot posts are open to motorized vehicles on Hancock managed lands. If you do not see a green dot post then the road is closed to motorized vehicles year round. Kiosks will be in place on some of the green dot mainline roads into their ownership with TMA maps for hunters’ use. This access project is being funded through 2021 by the Access and Habitat Program, which provides public hunting access and improves wildlife habitat on private land.

Reminder that Weyerhaeuser Properties open to no fee access use yellow signs to indicate closed roads

The Weyerhaeuser lands in the Stott Mtn-North Alsea TMA that are open to no fee public access use posted yellow signs (see photo) to identify roads that are closed to motor vehicles. Effective Dates for travel management restrictions are one day prior to general bow season through 2nd coast bull elk rifle season. Weyerhaeuser property access information can be found on this website: https://www.weyerhaeuser.com/recreational-access/northwest-region/ Scroll down and click on Willamette Valley access information link to view Mid-Coast Area (North Toledo HWY 20) information. While there is no additional permit needed for Weyerhaeuser property in this TMA, hunters should pay attention to signs at gates for other possible leases in the area.

NEW: Coos Mountain Access Area (Tioga Unit)

This new Coos Mtn TMA provides access to 89 square miles of the Tioga Unit on a “Welcome to Hunt” basis. Commercial timberland ownership in the area has shifted in recent years so the TMA opens access to more private and public land in the area.

To find out more about Oregon TMAs, see page 81-84 of the 2019 Oregon Big Game Regulations or see https://www.dfw.state.or.us/maps/#Travel for TMA maps.

Hunters may face fire restrictions and/or closures on other lands, especially earlier in the fall hunting seasons. It is each hunter’s responsibility to know access conditions and restrictions before heading afield. Here are some helpful places to find this information:

Private timberland closures, http://www.ofic.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/2019-OFIC-Closure-Form-1.pdf

ODF Industrial Fire Restrictions (IFPL), https://gisapps.odf.oregon.gov/firerestrictions/ifpl.html
ODF Public Fire Restrictions https://gisapps.odf.oregon.gov/Firerestrictions/PFR.html
US Forest Service, https://www.fs.fed.us/
Bureau of Land Management, https://www.blm.gov/oregon-washington

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RMEF Details $355,000 In Oregon Elk Habitat, Research Grants

THE FOLLOWING IS A PRESS RELEASE FROM THE ROCKY MOUNTAIN ELK FOUNDATION

The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation provided $355,128 in grants to fund nearly two dozen habitat enhancement and elk research projects in Oregon.

(RMEF)

The projects benefit 10,317 acres of wildlife habitat across Coos, Crook, Curry, Douglas, Grant, Harney, Klamath, Lake, Lane, Lincoln, Linn, Marion, Morrow, Tillamook, Umatilla, Union, Wallowa and Yamhill Counties. One of the projects benefits much of eastern Oregon.

“There is a great need to gain a better understanding of the productivity of elk populations as well as movement, behavior, private versus public habitat usage and other issues that affect elk in Oregon. That, in part, is why we provided grant funding for five detailed research projects,” said Blake Henning, RMEF chief conservation officer. “The funding also goes toward prescribed burning, forest thinning, meadow restoration, noxious weed treatment and other work that enhances habitat for elk and other wildlife.”

RMEF has 27 chapters and more than 17,000 members in Oregon.

“Elk and elk country in Oregon have our volunteers to thank for generating this funding by hosting banquets, membership drives and other events. We so appreciate their time and talents as well as their dedication to our conservation mission,” said Kyle Weaver, RMEF president and CEO.

Below is a sampling of Oregon’s 2019 projects, listed by county:

Coos County

  • Plant native grasses and forbs within coastal forest openings across 93 acres of Bureau of Land Management (BLM) land to improve forage for wildlife (also benefits Douglas and Curry Counties).

Crook County

  • Seed 455 acres of meadow, sagebrush and aspen habitat on the Ochoco National Forest. Crews will also burn slash piles created during 2018 thinning operations. The project area is utilized year-round by elk and also benefits mule deer, antelope, wild turkey, California and mountain quail, Hungarian partridge and other species.
  • Enhance about 1,345 acres of wildlife habitat on the northern edge of the Ochoco National Forest. Treatments include meadow restoration, aspen enhancement and protection, improving big game security through installing effective barriers on closed roads and reconnection of the floodplain through stream restoration and riparian improvements.

Douglas County

  • Provide funding for lab analysis of forage clippings taken in spring and fall as part of a study examining multiple native seed mixes to determine the best mix for elk forage based on consumption and nutritional content. Provide funding for six GPS collars to be placed on bull elk as part of a study to define elk ranges in western Oregon including habitat use and movements, survival rates and mortality causes. The findings will assist with improved overall elk management (also benefits Coos, Linn and Lane Counties).
  • Provide funding for a study to determine whether sampling and extracting DNA from fecal pellets is a reliable way to estimate elk populations. Currently, biologists conduct counts via helicopter surveys but they lack effectiveness due to heavy, dense forests (also benefits Coos, Linn and Lane Counties).

Grant County

  • Complete seeding of 100 acres that were heavily encroached by junipers and previously treated via cutting, piling and pile burning as part of a continuing effort to improve elk and deer range in the Sage Brush Basin. Treat 400 acres of winter range for elk. mule deer and antelope on the Phillip W. Schneider Wildlife Management Area through chemical control of invasive annual grasses followed by drill seeding with a desirable perennial grass mix.
  • Restore aspen stands by removing encroaching conifers covering 155 acres along streams and meadows on the Malheur National Forest. This marks the first phase of a project encompassing 17,500 acres 14 miles south of John Day.

Harney County

  • Provide funding for a holistic approach to increase the quality of elk habitat across 3,280 acres on the Malheur National Forest and BLM land. Crews will refurbish five water guzzlers, improve elk security, distribute native grass and mountain shrub seed and apply noxious weed treatment.
  • Remove juniper from 288 acres of BLM land to improve the health and vigor of aspen stands and riparian areas used by elk, mule deer and greater sage grouse in the Little Bridge Creek drainage.

Klamath County

  • Provide funding to assist with the construction of a wildlife crossing under a new bridge along U.S. 97 at milepost 180. Specifically, RMEF funds will go toward the installation of 10 miles of fencing to help funnel elk and deer to the undercrossing.

Lake County

  • Treat 891 acres of elk summer range in the North Warner Mountains on the Fremont-Winema National Forest. This is the fourth year of a seven-year effort to restore aspen on a landscape-scale while also improving wildlife habitat and creating both natural firebreaks and local jobs.

Lane County

  • Use mechanical mowing, chain saws and other means to improve 180 acres of meadow habitat on the Siuslaw National Forest. Annual maintenance prevents the incursion of invasive vegetation and benefits elk, black-tailed deer and other bird and animal life (also benefits Lincoln and Douglas Counties).
  • Prescribed burn 100 acres to trigger the growth of native vegetation and improve overall forest health on the Willamette National Forest. The treatment is part of the multi-year Jim’s Creek Restoration Project to return the area to its historic state of scattered Douglas fir, ponderosa pine and Oregon white oak stands with a dense bunchgrass understory.
  • Apply a variety of treatments to benefit wildlife habitat across 161 acres in the McKenzie River Ranger District on the Willamette National Forest. Specific approaches include noxious weed treatment, prescribed burning, mulching, planting seed and wetland enhancement.

Linn County

  • Apply a combination of forest thinning, prescribed fire, seeding and other treatments to restore meadow and wetland habitat at three sites in the Western Cascade Mountains on the Willamette National Forest (also benefits Lane County).
  • Apply a combination of treatments to enhance and restore six mountain meadows over 157 acres where non-native species and encroaching conifers are affecting habitat in the Sweet Home Ranger District on the Willamette National Forest.

Marion County

  • Restore and maintain a 38-acre large mountain meadow on BLM land northeast of Gates that is a migration corridor and provides summer forage.

Tillamook County

  • Maintain and restore 135 acres of meadows in the Hebo Ranger District on the Siuslaw National Forest. Crews will institute a combination of noxious weed, forest thinning and planting treatments to expand existing meadows by removing competing vegetation (also benefits Lincoln and Yamhill Counties).

Umatilla County

  • Provide funding for research to provide biologists a better understanding why elk are shifting their range from public to private lands in the Blue Mountains. Crews will capture and place GPS collars on 50 cow elk so biologists can monitor their migration and use of summer and winter range while also aiming to reduce private land damage and increase hunting opportunity (also benefits Morrow County).
  • Treat 555 acres on the Bridge Creek Wildlife Management Area to control invasive weeds and stimulate the growth of desirable grasses and forbs.

Union County

  • Thin 600 acres of young, overstocked conifer stands on the Wallowa-Whitman National Forest followed by slash treatment and pile and burning. Improving habitat will increase the quality of forage on yearlong elk habitat and reduce elk damage on nearby private land.
  • Treat 2,000 acres across the Grande Ronde and Catherine Creek watersheds on the Wallowa-Whitman National Forest in the Blue Mountains to remove noxious weeds that degrade the quality and quantity of elk forage.

Wallowa County

  • Prescribe burn 500 acres on the Wallowa-Whitman National Forest to remove decadent grasses and shrubs as well as stimulate regrowth in open grasslands and the understory of ponderosa pine and Douglas fir stands. The project is part of a10-year effort to burn more than 5,000 acres within the Chesnimnus Wildlife Management Unit to improve elk distribution and draw them away from private property where damage complaints are common.

Eastern Oregon

  • Provide funding for research to gain a better understanding why elk populations are declining across wide areas of the northwestern United States. Researchers will apply a time series approach across three different landscapes to analyze population responses to several disturbance agents such as forestry, fire and grazing.

NMFS Shares Salmon Habitat Gains, Flood-threat Reduction From Tillamook Estuary Work

THE FOLLOWING IS A NEWS STORY FROM THE NATIONAL MARINE FISHERIES SERVICE

NOAA’s work with community partners restoring estuary habitat in Tillamook Bay, Oregon is revitalizing tidal wetlands for threatened Oregon Coast coho salmon, and helping reduce flooding in the surrounding communities and farmlands.

The project’s benefits to fish were realized immediately—443 acres of different estuary habitats critical to juvenile salmon are now available, including mud flats, open water with vegetation, marsh and others. Often called “nurseries of the sea,” estuaries offer unique conditions, like slow moving water and tides that bring in nutrients, which keep fish safe and allow them to grow.

BEFORE AND AFTER IMAGES FROM THE TILLAMOOK ESTUARY PARTNERSHIP SHOW THE EFFECT OF REMOVING LEVEES AND TIDE GATES NEAR THE MOUTH OF THE TRASK RIVER. (TILLAMOOK ESTUARY PARTNERSIHP VIA NMFS)

A recently published report also confirms the project’s flood reduction goals were achieved. Shortly after project completion, in October 2017, a flood occurred at the site. Our restoration work resulted in widespread reduction in flood levels and duration including along Highway 101, a key commercial and transportation corridor. In total, about 4,800 acres around the project site showed reductions in flood levels.

This project, like many others we work on, shows how restoring habitat back to its natural functions can help coastal communities be more resilient against severe weather. Nature-based approaches are being shown to provide these, and many other economic benefits, along both the the east and west coasts of the United States.

Almost 90 percent of the Tillamook Estuary’s historic tidal wetlands have been lost to development and agriculture. Like many other species relying on estuary and wetland habitats, loss of these areas is a primary contributor to the decline of Oregon Coast coho salmon.

Additionally, Oregon’s winters bring storm surges, heavy rainfall, and snow melt. Combined with high tides, this often causes flooding in the area. Flood losses in Tillamook County exceeded $60 million from 1996 – 2000.

ESTUARIES ARE IMPORTANT HABITAT FOR COHO SMOLTS ALONG WITH THE YOUNG OF OTHER SALMON SPECIES. (ROGER TABOR, USFWS)

To achieve the mutually beneficial project goals, old levees, fill, and tide gates were removed to create tidal estuary habitat. This functions as a “flow corridor,” allowing flood waters to move freely and quickly away from the town of Tillamook. Now, nearby properties and more than 500 structures are protected from flooding. It’s estimated that $9.2 million in economic benefits will accrue from avoided flood damages over the next 50 years.

The project reconnected hundreds of acres of marsh habitat and restored 13 miles of new tidal channels. This will significantly benefit Endangered Species Act-listed Oregon Coast coho salmon. Historically, more than 200,000 of these salmon would return to Tillamook Bay each year. That number was down to just 2,000 in 2012. This habitat is critical for juvenile salmon to feed and grow, and will help with the broader goal of species recovery along Oregon’s entire coast.

The Southern Flow Corridor Project is the result of tremendous community support and collaboration. NOAA Fisheries’ Restoration Center, within the Office of Habitat Conservation, and the West Coast Regional Office, worked with more than a dozen local, state, federal, tribal and private partners on this effort.

BRYCE MOLENKAMP PREPARES TO NET A SALMON ON TILLAMOOK BAY. (MARK VEARY)

Key partners include the Port of Tillamook Bay, Tillamook Bay Habitat and Estuary Improvement District, Tillamook County, the State of Oregon, FEMA, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Institute for Applied Ecology, and the Tillamook Estuaries Partnership. We provided funding for the project through the Community-based Restoration Program and the Pacific Coastal Salmon Recovery Fund, and on-the-ground technical assistance.

4 Elk Poached, Wasted In 2 Oregon Coast Counties

Oregon wildlife troopers are asking for the public’s help to solve a trio of recent poaching cases involving four elk and a hawk.

TWO OF THREE COW ELK FOUND DEAD EAST OF TILLAMOOK EARLIER THIS MONTH. (OSP)

They say that the three cows and five-point bull were found earlier this month in Tillamook and Lincoln Counties, all shot by a rifle, and they say a redtail found injured in Jackson County had been shot as well.

The cow elk were investigated Jan. 12 and were found in a clear-cut 2.5 miles up a road off Highway 6 in the Fox Creek area east of Tillamook. OSP reported that they had been killed with a high-powered rifle and left to waste, but said that evidence was gathered at the scene.

Tipsters are being asked to call OSP Dispatch (503-842-4433) and reference case number SP19-013862.

As for the bull, it was found by a landowner on Jan. 8 near Hidden Valley Road just west of Toledo.

It too was left to waste, OSP reported. Informants are being told to contact Trooper Jason Adkins (800-452-7888; 541-961-8859; TIP@state.or.us) and to reference case SP19-022825.

And the hawk was found Jan. 16 in Central Point behaving oddly and determined to have been shot. It was captured and taken to a local wildlife rehab center but died from its injury.

Anyone with info can call OSP dispatch (541-776-6111) and reference case SP19-018083.

Work Starting Soon On New Cape Meares Lake Dock

THE FOLLOWING IS A PRESS RELEASE FROM THE OREGON DEPARTMENT OF FISH AND WILDLIFE

The Tillamook Anglers, Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW), and Tillamook County have partnered to place a new fishing dock on Cape Meares Lake for public use.

Construction will begin March 15 and is expected to last through April 16. The new dock will be located on the southwest corner of the lake near the intersection of the Bayocean Dike Road and Bayocean Road.

ANOTHER NEW DOCK IS COMING TO AN OREGON COAST LAKE. THE NEW ONE AT CAPE MEARES LAKE WILL HELP ANGLERS, JUST AS THIS ONE AT ECKMAN LAKE HAS. (ODFW)

The new dock replaces one that had served the public from 1991-2004 but was removed after it was damaged during a storm.

The main objective of this project is to provide anglers a safe place to fish, according to Ron Rehn, Salmon Trout Enhancement Program (STEP) biologist for ODFW’s North Coast Watershed District.

“Currently most bank angling takes place along the shoulder of Bayocean Road, which can create safety issues,” Rehn explained. “The new dock will provide access away from the road and put anglers over deeper water, improving the chances for catching fish and having a positive experience.”

ODFW stocks approximately 13,000 rainbow trout in addition to surplus adult hatchery winter steelhead in Cape Meares Lake.

Funding for this project was provided by a donation from Loren Parks and the Tillamook Anglers, with major portion funded through a grant from the ODFW Fish Restoration and Enhancement Program.  Remaining assistance was provided by Tillamook County and the ODFW North Coast STEP Program