art - flying geese
who we areoregon's wetlandsprojectsnewsletterplanspartnerslinks

Willamette Valley Projects

Baskett Slough
Buchanan Farm

E.E. Wilson
Gospel Swamp
Long Tom Ranch
Mud Slough
Muddy Creek
Multnomah Channel Wetlands
Owens Farm
Sandy River Delta
Sauvie Island
Snag Boat Bend
Tualatin River
Wapato Lake
West Eugene Wetlands

Baskett Slough

Baskett Slough Location: Baskett Slough National Wildlife Refuge, 10 miles west of Salem off Highway 22.

Project: Restore agricultural lands to wetlands to provide habitat for migratory birds and other native wildlife.

Size: 400 acres of wetlands restored.

Partners: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Ducks Unlimited.

Background: Wetland restoration work at Baskett Slough began in 1994, targeting marginal agricultural lands that were traditionally planted to crops to provide forage for wintering Canada geese. Diversity and abundance of birds using the refuge has increased dramatically. Similar restoration work is under way or planned at the Tualatin River, Ankeny and William L. Finley national wildlife refuges. The Fish and Wildlife Service hopes to restore a total of 2,000 acres of wetlands on the refuges by the year 2000.

Contact: Jim Houk, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 26208 Finley Refuge Road, Corvallis OR 97333; 541-757-7236.

Back to Top


 

Buchanan Farm

TyeeLocation: South of Corvallis, three miles north of Finley National Wildlife Refuge.

Acres: 244-acre Wetland Reserve Program conservation easement

Project: Under the Natural Resources Conservation Service’s Wetlands Reserve Program, a portion of the 450-acre Buchanan Century Farm is being restored to wetlands. The acreage has been placed in a 30-year conservation easement with the NRCS. The Wetlands Reserve Program reimburses the Buchanans for 75 percent of the restoration costs. In exchange for a conservation easement protecting the wetlands for 30 years, they also receive a payment equal to 75 percent of the agricultural land value.

The Buchanans kept their filbert orchards and wine grapes, but took 115 acres of grass seed out of production. Another 130 acres of forested bottomlands along the creeks — never farmed — anchor the entire restoration project. Along Beaver and Muddy Creeks, forested riparian areas are being expanded. Native wet prairie plants are being re-seeded in easement areas.

Partners: Buchanan family, Natural Resources Conservation Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife

Benefits: Enhances habitat for several species of concern, including red-legged frogs and western pond turtles, and provides outstanding habitat for willow flycatchers and other songbirds and waterfowl. The restored areas support an assemblage of native wetland prairie plants that have become extremely rare in the Willamette Valley.

Contact: Dave Buchanan, 26335 Greenberry Road, Corvallis, OR 97333; (541) 753-8754. Gary Briggs, Natural Resources Conservation Service, Tangent Field Office, Tangent, OR; (541) 967-5925.

Back to Top


E.E. Wilson

E.E. WilsonLocation: Ten miles north of Corvallis, along Highway 99W

Land Manager: Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife

Project: With the support of several partners, in 1992 ODFW began restoring wetlands at E.E. Wilson as part of a new management plan emphasizing biodiversity. By 1995, several dozen small ponds and wetlands totaling 170 acres were constructed or enhanced, and now support a diversity of native wetland plants and wildlife. Ongoing maintenance includes control of non-native vegetation, especially reed canary grass.

Benefits: More than 60 bird species new to the area have been observed in recent years, most of them associated with wetland habitats. E.E. Wilson now supports significant numbers of breeding waterfowl, up from almost none before restoration. Increasing numbers of species of wading birds, shorebirds, and rails now use the area. More than 800 waterfowl hunter visits were recorded each of the past three years, up from virtually none before restoration.

Partners: Ducks Unlimited, Oregon Duck Hunters Association, Pheasants Forever, Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife

Contact: Dave Budeau, Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, 29555 Camp Adair Road, Monmouth OR 97631; 541-745-5334.

Back to Top


 

Gospel Swamp

Gospel SwampLocation: In Benton County, about 20 miles southwest of Corvallis near the town of Alpine.

Owners: Warren and Laurie Halsey

Project: Restores about 50 acres of wetlands and riparian forest along Muddy Creek. Under the Natural Resource Conservation Service’s Wetlands Reserve Program, 66 acres of the Halsey’s grass seed farm and pasture were placed under a 30-year conservation easement. Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife and Ducks Unlimited contributed about two-thirds of the construction costs, with the Halseys paying for the rest. In exchange for placing a 30-year easement on their property, the NRCS reimbursed the Halseys for 75% of the market value of the land, as well as 75% of the costs of planting native grasses, shrubs, and trees.

Partners: The Halseys, Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, Ducks Unlimited, and the Natural Resources Conservation Service.

Benefits: Habitat for 180 species of birds, and red-legged frogs and western pond turtles, both listed on the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife’s sensitive species list.

Contact: Steve Smith, Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, 7118 NE Vandenberg, Corvallis, OR 97330; 541-757-4186.

Back to Top


 

Long Tom Ranch

Long Tom RanchLocation: In Lane County, about 2 miles west of Junction City, at the junction of the Amazon Channel and Long Tom River.

Owner: Privately-owned with WRP conservation easement

Project: Under the USDA’s Wetlands Reserve Program, 190 acres of wetlands were restored, and a total of 355 acres of wetlands, riparian forest, and surrounding uplands are protected by a permanent conservation easement. The natural hydrology of this site was altered by flood control projects along the Long Tom River and Amazon Creek. Restoration efforts have focused on restoring the original hydrology of the property without removing the flood-control benefits of the Long Tom River and Amazon Channel.

Partners: Private land owners, Ducks Unlimited, East Lane Soil and Water Conservation District, Natural Resources Conservation Service, Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

Benefits: Restoration was designed to benefit a diversity of wildlife species, including neotropical migrant songbirds, shorebirds, bald eagles, peregrine falcons, western pond turtles, and waterfowl. There is outstanding potential habitat for a number of threatened and endangered wetland prairie plants, including Nelson’s checker-mallow and Kincaid’s lupine.

One unique feature of this project is that it includes the largest Oregon chub pond in the Willamette Valley. The Oregon chub was placed on the federal endangered species list in 1992, after suffering from decades of habitat destruction and predation by introduced warmwater fishes. An historic oxbow was excavated and provides habitat for the chub, a small minnow adapted to the warm temperatures of the oxbows when they become isolated from main drainages during low water.

Contact: Alan Makinson, Natural Resources Conservation Service, Tangent Field Office, Tangent OR; 541-967-5927.

Back to Top


 

Mud Slough

Mud SloughLocation: West of Salem in Polk County, just east of Baskett Slough National Wildlife Refuge.

Owners: Mark and Debbie Knaupp

Project: Restores 400 acres of wetlands, including 345 acres placed in a permanent Wetlands Reserve Program (WRP) conservation easement. The Knaupps enrolled a portion of their grass seed farm in the Natural Resource Conservation Service’s WRP program because of a personal interest in wetlands and waterfowl habitat, and after a series of wet years and growing numbers of wintering geese made the lowlands along Mud Slough difficult to farm. The wetland was restored by building a series of low dikes to slow down and impound water from adjacent Mud Slough during high-water. The existing perennial fescue grass was eliminated and the site has reverted to native herbaceous wetland vegetation within two years of restoration. Limited planting of native trees and shrubs provided woody cover and diversity to the site. The WRP paid the Knaupps for a permanent conservation easement on the restored acreage, and the WRP, ODF&W, Ducks Unlimited and the Knaupps funded construction and other restoration costs. In addition to the WRP acreage, the Knaupps are in the process of restoring 55 acres as part of a wetland mitigation site.

Partners: The Knaupps, Natural Resource Conservation Service, Ducks Unlimited, and Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife.

Benefits: Provides habitat for migrating and wintering waterfowl, shorebirds, wading birds, bald eagles and songbirds. Seven species of waterfowl breed on the wetlands. Nelson’s checkermallow, a flower listed as threatened under the federal Endangered Species Act, grows in wetland meadows.

Contact: Ken Hale, Natural Resources Conservation Service, 289 E. Ellendale #504, Dallas, OR 97338; 503-623-5534.

Back to Top


 

Muddy Creek

Muddy CreekLocation: West of Highway 99 from Dawson Road downstream to the confluence of the Marys River just west of Corvallis.

Project: A series of projects are providing the components of what could eventually be a corridor of protected and restored habitats along the Muddy Creek corridor between William L. Finley National Wildlife Refuge and Corvallis.

Partners: Greenbelt Land Trust, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, City of Corvallis, Natural Resources Conservation Service, private landowners

Notes: Muddy Creek has never been channelized and has good oak and ash riparian forest habitat as well as extensive seasonal wetlands. Greenbelt Land Trust is working to acquire 65 acres of wetlands and conservation easements over an additional 50 acres with funding from a 2001 North American Wetlands Conservation Act grant. The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and the Natural Resources Conservation Service have helped private landowners restore or enhance more than 400 acres of prior converted wetlands and riparian habitat in recent years. The City of Corvallis is considering purchase of an additional 200 acres along the Muddy Creek floodplain with funds from a bond measure approved by city voters in 2000.

Contact: Karlene McCabe, Greenbelt Land Trust, Box 1721, Corvallis OR 97339; 541-752-9609; greenbelt@proaxis.com

Back to Top


Multnomah Channel Wetlands

Multnomah Channel Wetlands Location: Off highway 30 in northwest Multnomah County, about 10 miles from of downtown Portland.

Owner: Metro

Size: 309 acres

Project: Construction of water control structures to enhance marsh areas. Plant 24 acres using 6 species of hardwoods and increase bank stabilization. Conduct surveys and assess fisheries use of channel habitat.

Future plans: Restoration of more natural hydrology and native plant communities.

Other: Metro's lands are within a mile or two of the 420-acre Burlington Bottoms wetlands, purchased by the Bonneville Power Administration in 1991 to mitigate wildlife habitat losses, and just across the channel from the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife's 12,000-acre Sauvie Island Wildlife Area.

Contact: Jim Morgan, Metro, 600 NE Grand Avenue, Portland OR 97232-2736; 503/797-1727.

Back to Top


Owens Farm

Location: North Corvallis

Project: Protect and restore wetland, oak, and prairie habitats on a 218-acre property adjacent to Jackson-Frazier Wetland.

Partners: Greenbelt Land Trust, City of Corvallis, and Benton County.

Notes: The Greenbelt Land Trust purchased 95 acres of the Owens Farm site, and the City of Corvallis purchased 113 acres of the property in February 2002. The Greenbelt Land Trust also has the option of purchasing and additional five acres of adjacent oak woodland. The next phase of the project will analyze existing soils, vegetation, wildlife, and hydrological conditions on the property to develop a management and restoration plan for the site. The data assessment will also be used by Benton County to update their management and restoration plan for the adjacent Jackson Frazier Wetland. The site contains a diversity of habitats ranging from wetlands, oak woodlands, riparian habitat, farmed grasslands and former oak savanna. All of the habitat types found on the property are rare in the Willamette Valley and support a number of priority bird species and rare or endangered plant species. The site is located at the confluence of Jackson and Frazier Creeks. The Greenbelt Land Trust and the City of Corvallis will evaluate resource values of the property before beginning restoration or management.

Contact: Karlene McCabe, Greenbelt Land Trust, Box 1721, Corvallis OR 97339; 541-752-9609; greenbelt@proaxis.com

Back to Top


Sandy River Delta

Sandy River Delta Location: Just east of the Sandy River off Interstate 84 (exit 18) in eastern Multnomah County.

Owner: Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area (U.S. Forest Service)

Size: 1,400 acres of former agricultural lands and forests, including seasonal wetlands, sloughs and dense stands of hardwood.

Wetland restoration: Installation of 3 water control structures restoring 150 acres of wetlands. Approximately 80 acres of reforestation of hardwoods, using willows cottonwoods, and ash. Removing invasive plants such as reed canary grass and blackberries using mechanical methods. Reed canary grass removal will be an ongoing project. Future plans call for reforesting 30-50 acres each year for 10 years, and monitoring of native wetland plants.

Partners: U.S. Forest Service, Ducks Unlimited, National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, National Forest Foundation, Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, Friends of Trees, American Forests Global Releaf Program, City of Portland, Bureau of Environmental Services.

Contact: Virginia Kelly, U.S. Forest Service, 902 Wasco Avenue #200, Hood River OR 97031; 541/386-2333.

Back to Top

 

Sauvie Island

Sauvie Island Location: Sauvie Island Wildlife Area, 12 miles northwest of Portland.

Projects: Restore or enhance wetlands through installation of water control structures, pumps and fencing to control livestock grazing.

Size: More than 3,600 acres of wetlands.

Partners: Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, Ducks Unlimited, Natural Resources Conservation Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Oregon Duck Hunters Association.

Background: The overall project restores or enhances 3,500 acres of wetlands on Sauvie Island and on the Washington side of the Columbia River. The work is part of a $1.5 million project put together in 1995 that also includes habitat restoration in Washington's Vancouver Lowlands and Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge. About half of the funding came from a federal grant under the North American Wetlands Conservation Act.

A second phase of the project put together by Ducks Unlimited taps the same federal grant program to help pay for restoration and enhancement of another 1,985 acres of wetlands on the north end of the Sauvie Island wildlife Area and on Metro properties along the adjacent Multnomah Channel.

Projects on the Washington side of the Columbia River include more than 2,500 acres of wetland acquisition and restoration in the area between Vancouver and Woodland.

Contact: Mark Nebeker, Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, 18330 NW Sauvie Island Road, Portland, OR 97231; 503-621-3488.

Back to Top


Snag Boat Bend

Snag Boat BendLocation: On the Willamette River south of Peoria in Linn County.

Project: Acquisition of a key 341-acre property on the Willamette River for addition to the nearby William L. Finley National Wildlife Refuge.

Partners: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, The Nature Conservancy

Notes: The Nature Conservancy bought the Snag Boat Bend property from a private landowner in 1998 for $920,000 and transferred it to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in 2000. The new Snag Boat Bend refuge unit encompasses 140 acres of wetland, including floodplain forests, marshes, backwater sloughs, and wildlife food plots that the previous owner established. The area supports western pond turtles and red-legged frogs, both sensitive species, while attracting thousands of waterfowl during the fall, winter and spring. The riparian forests also provide habitat for a colony of herons, nesting hawks, and songbirds. Planned restoration work includes restoration of riparian forest and other floodplain habitats.

Contact: Jim Houk, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 26208 Finley Refuge Road, Corvallis OR 97333-9533; 541-757-7236

Back to Top


Tualatin River

Tualatin River Location: Near Sherwood, Oregon, 15 miles southwest of downtown Portland.

Project: Multiple projects are restoring habitats on recently acquired lands within the refuge’s different units. Along Highway 99W, 400 acres of wetlands have been restored on the old Steinborn dairy in what was the first major habitat restoration project on the refuge. Restoration on the Dennis Unit involves 100 acres of emergent wetland, forested wetland, and oak/pine savannah. Wetland, riparian forest and oak/pine savannah are also being re-established on the 75-acre Parr Unit and 50-acre Morand Unit.

Partners: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Ducks Unlimited, Bureau of Reclamation, Metro, Friends of the Refuge, Tualatin Riverkeepers, Friends of Trees, and Portland Bureau of Environmental Services.

Notes: To date, 1,253 acres of the 3,058 acres approved for acquisition have been protected in fee purchase or under long-term management agreement. In addition, approximately 625 acres of native habitats have been restored. Post-restoration monitoring has recorded 165 new migratory bird species using the refuge with wintering waterfowl populations peaking at 50,000 birds. Bald eagles and peregrine falcons now winter on the refuge. Migrating salmonids benefit from enhanced passage and backwater flood habitats along perennial tributaries and mainstream reaches of the Tualatin River. Although presently closed for public use, the refuge has entered into master planning and engineering and design for visitor service facilities with plans to open the refuge in the near future.

Contact: Ralph D. Webber, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Tualatin River
NWR, 16507 SW Roy Rogers Road, Sherwood OR 97140; (503) 590-5811; Ralph_Webber@r1.fws.gov

Back to Top


Wapato Lake

Location: South of Forest Grove near Gaston (Washington and Yamhill Counties).

Project: Establish a new national wildlife refuge unit to protect and restore wetlands within historic Wapato Lake and the floodplain of the upper Tualatin River.

Partners: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Ducks Unlimited, local landowners

Notes: A group of local landowners asked the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to consider establishing a new national wildlife refuge encompassing the historic Wapato Lake. The Fish and Wildlife Service has identified an area of approximately 6,400 acres east of the town of Gaston and south of Forest Grove as a study area for the proposed refuge. The proposed refuge boundary encompasses the historical Wapato Lake bed and extends downstream along the Tualatin River floodplain. About 600 acres in size, Wapato Lake has historically been one of the most important places in the northern Willamette Valley for waterfowl habitat. The scrub-shrub wetlands that were formerly found at this site have been almost entirely been eliminated from this part of Oregon. The area has been drained since the 1930s for agricultural crops, and most of the area has been ditched, diked, and drained with tiles to maintain agricultural status. Restoration of the Tualatin River floodplain and Wapato Lake’s historic wetlands would provide tremendous benefits for migratory birds and could also prove helpful for at-risk salmonids. The area is also a high priority for biodiversity conservation in the Willamette Valley.

Contact: Ralph D. Webber, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Tualatin River
NWR, 16507 SW Roy Rogers Road, Sherwood OR 97140; (503) 590-5811 Ralph_Webber@r1.fws.gov

Back to Top


West Eugene Wetlands

West Eugene Wetlands Location: West Eugene's Amazon Creek system.

Project: On-going land acquisition and wetland restoration program to implement local government's wetland conservation plan.

Size: Partners have assembled a conservation network that encompasses more than 1,800 acres, with acquisitions continuing.

Partners: Bureau of Land Management, City of Eugene, Lane Council of Goverments, The Nature Conservancy, Corps of Engineers, Natural Resources Conservation Service.

Other: The West Eugene area includes some of the largest remaining fragments of the Willamette Valley's native wet prairies, which provide habitat for a number of rare and endangered species. Partners are assembling a conservation network that will connect West Eugene wetlands with the marshes of Fern Ridge Reservoir, a major stopping point for migrant birds of the Pacific Flyway. Pending projects include a 300-acre wetland restoration project on Amazon Creek.

Contact: Steve Gordon, Lane Council of Governments, 125 E. 8th Avenue, Eugene OR 97401; 541-687-4426.

Back to Top


Updated November 14, 2001

rule