Douglas Fir

I’ve been thinking more seriously about Oregon trees for the last couple of months… ever since reading an article about a demonstration in Southern Oregon over the sale of old growth forest by BLM to a private company for timbering. A series of blog posts traces a quest to learn about how forests (especially Federal lands) are managed. These links connect with that thought trail:

On the way home from our Master Naturalist class at the beach, we pulled off along route 26 for a sandwich break. The spot was purposely selected because it overlooks the Coast Range to an area south of the highway that is in the process of being timbered. This provided an opportunity to observe a landscape that is dramatically impacted by logging operations. My husband and I tried to make sense out of what was in front of us.

We asked ourselves:

      • What kind of harvest are we looking at?
      • Will/are private landowners obligated to use “scientific” harvest methods?
      • Is this forest an “even-aged” stand, “uneven-aged” stand, or a combination?
      • How does the type of stand influence the harvest method?
      • Will the magnitude of this (these) harvest(s) impact watershed quality?

Why did we do this?

Viewing Douglas Fir forests on trips to the beach is something we’ve done for over forty years. I suppose, like many people, we took in stride the idea that part of being an Oregonian comes with the knowledge that logging has been an historical part of the State’s economy. Questioning how forest management practices are determined and applied… is a new quest. Taking time to stop, and examine a forest under a naturalist’s lens is an important step in defining and refining our points of view.

This is a hot topic and the debates are most likely enduring. I’d love to hear thoughts on this. Please join the conversation…

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