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Online LibraryWildlife United States. Congress. House. Committee on ResouNational Fish and Wildlife Foundation : oversight hearing before the Subcommittee on Fisheries, Wildlife, and Oceans of the Committee on Resources, House of Representatives, One Hundred Fourth Congress, second session, on the effectiveness of the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation and projects th → online text (page 8 of 11)
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Department of Forestry (ODF) , the OWHF set out to develop a
joint venture with private industry and private land owners,
including most of Oregon's largest timber companies:
Willamette Industries, Georgia-Pacific, Weyerhaeuser, Boise
Cascade, Longview Fiber, Cavanham Forest Industries, Stimpson
Lumber Co., Simpson Timber, Hampton Tree Farms, Tumac Lumber
Co. and Starker Forests, Inc. Our Foundation funded the
preparation of two detailed salmon habitat restoration
planning documents, one for Oregon's north coast and one for
Oregon's mid-coast.

Once these "blueprints" for habitat restoration were
completed, we were confronted with a serious problem. What
should the Foundation and the ODFW do with these plans? It
became quite clear that, in order to take this project to the
next level and to complete the habitat restoration set forth
in the plans, we had to identify a major funding source which
would allow us to encourage and challenge the private land
owners and the timber companies to participate financially in
the project. We needed funds for biologists to work with the
private land owners and draw up the final, detailed plans and
to oversee the in-stream and riparian restoration. We also
needed funds for the major capital improvements that were
identified in the plans.


while some local foundations expressed an interest in the
project, it was clear that we were not going to receive a
major grant or commitment. We had nowhere to turn except to
the NFWF. Over the last three years, the OWHF has applied for
and received two major grants, each in the amount of
$300,000.00, for a total of $600,000.00. Both grants were on
a two-for-one matching basis ($100,000.00 NFWF funds and
$200,000.00 local challenge funds). One grant was for
Oregon's north coast and one grant was for Oregon's mid- coast.

With this financial support, we were then able to turn to
the ODFW's Restoration and Enhancement Board, the timber
companies and the ODF with the challenge. To date, they have
provided approximately $200,000.00 in local matching funds for
the North Coast Salmon Habitat Restoration Project. In
addition, the private timber companies have, over and above
the financial support, also contributed significantly with "in
kind" contributions comprised of both labor and materials.

The Mid-Coast Salmon Habitat Restoration Project has now
raised approximately $80,000.00 of local matching funds,
including contributions from some private foundations, and is
moving smoothly toward its challenge goal of $200,000.00.

Final project plans for both the north and mid-coast
projects are being developed right now by biologists in
cooperation with the private land owners and various
state/federal agencies. It is anticipated that substantial
habitat restoration efforts will be underway in both areas by
late June, 1996.

All of this is very exciting! Oregon is taking a
leadership role in promoting and directing habitat restora-
tion. We intend for these projects to be part of a long-term
plan for coho protection and enhancement. The OWHF and the
ODFW are mindful of the fact that the National Marine Fisher-
ies Sei-vice (NMFS) will likely list the coho as an endangered
species. Most Oregonians would like to find a way to solve
the coho problem without having to undergo all of the many
difficulties that flow from an Endangered Species Act "list-
ing." We would like to have our north coast and mid-coast
plans be adopted and accepted by the NMFS as a viable alterna-
tive to an Endangered Species Act listing. With the continued
assistance and encouragement from the NFWF, we think we can
accomplish this goal.

For a further description of the North Coast Habitat
Restoration Project, please see Exhibit A.

Looking back over the last three years, the reality is
that very little habitat restoration would have been accom-
plished had it not been for the support and backing of NFWF.


- 3 -

Without the NFWF grants, the OWHF would still be looking for
funding in Oregon, the plans would still be "on the shelf,"
and many of the timber companies would still be waiting for
guidance and funding.

Based on our Foundation's involvement with the NFWF over
the past three years, I have concluded that the NFWF is
functioning very smoothly, efficiently and effectively. The
NFWF grant program provides some unique and highly significant
benefits :

(1) First and foremost it provides tremendous leverage
by which each dollar granted to the OWHF is able to generate
an additional $2.00 of local money. Over and above the actual
dollar amount granted, the NFWF grant has also generated in
kind contributions and donations in the form of habitat
restoration work that the timber companies have performed "at
cost" and without reimbursement or payment.

(2) The NFWF also provides flexibility in its programs
and grant procedures. The grant process is streamlined and
not overly burdensome. With each of our two grants, we were
notified within three months of grant submission that our
proposal had been accepted. Money from the grant was avail-
able to us within 4-6 weeks of grant approval. Once the
project began, we submitted financial summaries every three
months and program/operation summaries (including slides and
video) every six months. There is virtually no bureaucratic
red tape . Without reservation, I can state that the NFWF
grant program is an incredibly "user friendly" federal
program. This contrasts sharply with some other federal
programs like "Jobs in the Woods" where, according to local
Oregon biologists, it takes significantly more time, effort
and energy to get any funding whatsoever. And these programs
do not have the leverage capability that the NFWF grant
program has .

(3) The NFWF grant program helps create public -private
partnerships . As a result of the NFWF grants, our two
projects in Oregon have brought together private industry,
timber companies, private land owners and farmers, state
agencies, federal agencies and local foundations. This has
allowed us to move ahead in unison, towards a common goal:
fish and wildlife conservation through habitat restoration.
We have been able to accomplish this without much of the
bickering, criticism and threatened litigation that so often
occurs today between private industry, governmental agencies
and environmental organizations.

(4) The NFWF grant program provides money for monitoring
the various improvement projects once they have been complet-
ed, thereby providing a means by which we can determine if


- 4 -

habitat restoration is actually working. Without the original
NFWF grant, we would never have progressed to the point where
this kind of detailed scientific documentation was even
possible. Please see the North Coast Habitat Restoration
monitoring report for May, 1996 attached as Exhibit B.

(5) The NFWF grant program provides a vision for the
future of conservation in America. For the OWHF, this vision
encompasses healthy habitat, abundant fish runs, enhanced
angling and hunting opportunities, public-private partnerships
and economic opportunities for areas hardest hit by reduced
timber harvesting and poor fisheries. As we look to the
future, more and more of our conservation efforts are going to
have to be dealt with at the local level and be funded by
public-private partnerships. Because the federal government
may well have less money to spend on conservation in the
future, it will be absolutely critical to retain those
organizations/programs, such as the NFWF, that foster public -
private partnerships and that encourage private enterprise to
invest directly in conservation programs and habitat restora-

Based on the success of the NFWF's challenge grant
program in Oregon, I submit that U.S. tax dollars are being
very wisely spent. Both the OWHF and the NFWF operate with
some of the same governing principles: (a) put grant money to
work in projects, don't spend money on personnel, administra-
tion, overhead, bureaucracy and studies; and (b) don't get
involved in politics, lawsuits, advocacy or lobbying. By
operating according to these underlying principles, I believe
that the NFWF is able to avoid frivolous expenditures and
waste. I am unable to identify any other agency or program
where U.S. tax dollars are as prudently spent or monitored as
they are with the NFWF.

At this time, I would not recommend any structural or
substantive changes in the NFWF Establishment Act of 1984. I
would, however, strongly recommend that the annual funding
more closely track the authorization level of $25 million
dollars. Every dollar allocated to the NFWF generates an
additional $2.00-$3.00 of local/private or state money. It is
doubtful that many other federal programs can produce such
impressive returns. In fact, I recommend the Committee call on
NFWF to expand its role in this time of tight budgets.

As federal funds decline, it seems clear that the NFWF is
one of a very few organizations that provides maximum,
efficient utilization of funds by not "taking a cut" at each
step as funds are moved to the field. Instead, the NFWF grant
program actually multiplies the federal investment through
partnerships. To constrict or constrain the NFWF at this time
would be to move in the wrong direction and to send the wrong
message. Instead, Congress should promote leadership through
efficiency and should call upon the NFWF to do more for fish
and wildlife conservation.




PORTLAND, OR - The North Coast Salmon Restoration Project
began in 1994 following discussions between the Oregon Wildlife
Heritage Foundation and the Oregon Department of Fish U Wildlife
(ODFW) around the need for a regional approach to stream restora-
tion efforts. The goal was to improve the winter survival of
juvenile coho salmon and steelhead. This project is one of seven
regional plans developed and jointly funded by the Foundation and
ODFW. The other plans include: North Coast, Lower Columbia, Mid
Coast, South Coast, Coos-Coquille Plan, Umpqua and the Upper Rogue.
The plans were developed using the best available science to
establish specific guidelines for selected restoration sites in
every significant watershed on the Oregon Coast.

It was quickly determined that resources were limited, so the
North Coast plan focuses on 62 project sites along coastal streams
from Pacific City north to Seaside. Of the 62 sites identified,
one-third are industrial owned, one-third are state owned and one-
third are non- industrial holdings. Plan priorities included first
working on sites with existing coho salmon populations. This
effort will increase salmon productivity and allow their population
to grow and expand throughout the watershed, enhancing neighboring
streams with very low or nonexistent salmon activity.

Government, landowners, business and industry, outdoor
enthusiasts, individual citizens and other fish and wildlife
activist groups also wanted to establish regional priorities for
restoring streams and habitats and were included in the planning
process. Achieving consensus from such diversified groups and
creating an action-oriented work plan that clearly defined outcomes
were considered key to the success of the project.

The projects are directed by a full-time fish biologist,
funded by the Foundation, on the staff at ODFW. These projects
will be completed in two years. Each of the principle sites is a
complex undertaking designed to substantially increase stream
structure and provide off -channel rearing opportunities for salmon.
Twenty-one projects were completed in 1995 and 42 will be finished
in 1996. Monitoring results over a multi-year period is considered
an essential component of the plan, and comparing data to predeter-
mined and measurable outcomes is already in process.

Funding for the project is the responsibility of Oregon
Wildlife Heritage Foundation. The Foundation successfully applied
to the National Fish & Wildlife Foundation for a 2 to 1 match grant
of $100,000.00. They were able to secure an additional $200,000.00
in cash contributions. In-kind contributions valued at nearly
$400,000.00 came from the Department of Forestry and private
lando'.vners serving on the steering committee.

The Oregon Wildlife Heritage Foundation and the ODFW have
completed plans for 88 restoration projects at mid coast sites.
The Foundation hopes to raise $885,000.00 to complete these
projects by 1999.



Western Forester

At an Oregon north coast restoration project, a whole tree IK to 2 times
the width of the stream channel is allowed to settle naturally, thus avoid-
ing the need for a cable system. (Photo courtesy of Oregon Department of
Fish and Wildlife)

Restoration Projects Explore Ways to Improve Salmon Habitat

By John Christie

The coastal echo has come under
pressure to be listed as 'endangered'
under the Endangered Species Act
because of a long-term gradual
decline in the number of spawning
pairs arriving in coastal streams.
Coho spawn in the small tributaries
of the major rivers on the west slope
of the coast range of Oregon, and
listing coho would impact a huge
area of some of the most productive
forests in the world, severely
inhibiting the ability of woodland
owners and others to practice
forestry on their own property

Activities such as stand improve-
ment cutting, harvesting, road
building, and even recreational
functions within designated por-
tions of the coastal forest type,
would be affected. And landowners,
both large and small, aie concerned
over the possible reduction in their
available forest land base.

Two years ago the Oregon
Wildlife Heritage Foundation
(OWHF) and the Oregon Depart-
ment of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW)
collaborated in an effort to find
ways to improve the spawning habi-
tat in the coastal streams. People in
the area already had interest and
experience in developing in-stream
structures to enhance anadromous
habitat in tributaries. It was known
that for several years individuals
representing fishing clubs, land-
owner groups, schools and agencies,
working through the Salmon Trout
Enhancement Program (STEP),
conducted somewhat fragmented,
but frequently effective, habitat
restoration projects. These were, by
and large, individual efforts which
needed to be channeled into an over-
all plan for habitat improvement to
include the entire coastal region.

To be successful and effective, an
action work plan, not a study, need-
ed to be put in place, and time was
of the essence. In the fall of 1994, 62
sites were identified on which to
carry out enhancement projects.
The goal was to complete work on
these within two year s. The purpose
of the plan would be to create a high
quality regional guide for stream
restoration. The availability of
resources amd voluntary participa-
tion would determine the scope of

May 1996— Page 11

the area covered.

A fish biologist was fully funded
by the OWHF and hired by the
ODFW to provide the design and
details of construction activities.
This person is also responsible for
regulatory compliance and over-
sight of in-stream work. Within a
year, a committee comprised of
seven industrial firms plus repre-
sentatives from the Oregon Small
Woodlands Association, Oregon
Forest Industries Council, Oregon
Department of Forestry, OWHF and
ODFW was formed within the
Oregon Wildlife Heritage Foun-
dation. Its purpose was to act as a
permanent steering committee to
provide oversight and distribute
resources needed to accomplish the
restoration projects.

The Oregon Wildlife Heritage
Foundation secured grants from the
national Fish and Wildlife
Foundation on a 2:1 matching basis.
Other sources of funding include
contributions from industry, the
Restoration and Enhancement
Board. Oregon Wildlife Heritage
Foundation, U.S. Fish and Wildlife
Service, and the Oregon Depart-
ment of Fish and Wildlife. Ma-
chinery, personnel and materials for
structures all count as in-kind con-
tributions. In addition, any work
completed for habitat restoration
projects qualifies for Oregon's
Riparian Habitat Tax Incentive

Monitoring the effects of the pro-

jects on the environment within the
various streams is carried out by a
University of Washington School of
Fisheries graduate student, work-
ing with the ODFW. The student
will evaluate the completed pro-
jects, and measure movements of
structures and stream bedloaHo
woody debris accumulation i
habitat unit changes on a seasonal
basis. A model to identify areas of
prime habitat most suitable for
restoration to be used for site selec-
tion on future habitat improvement
projects will then be developed by
the graduate student.

During 1995, 21 projects were
completed, most of which survived
the December floods. The 1996
storm damage has not yet been
evaluated, but preliminary inspec-
tions show favorable results with
some movement and shifting of logs
on in-stream structures, as well as
sedimentation in the alcoves.
Generally, however, new wood
recruitment, pool development and
gravel accumulation in the main
streams appear to have improved
the rearing habitat.

Only time will tell how successful
the salmonid project will be. A final
draft report of all monitoring activi-
ties will be available at the end of

■Joliri Christie is a member of
North Coast Salmonid Restoratioa
Project Steering Committee, the
Oregon Small Woodlands Associ-
ation, and the SAF.



North Coast Habitat Project

Project Monitoring and Evaluation
May 1996 Update

Barry A. Thorn
Kelly M.S. Moore


In the summer of 1995, twenty two echo salmon (Onchorhynchus kisutch)
habitat enhancement projects were completed on Oregon coastal streams as part of
the North Coast Habitat Project. Project techniques included the placement of large
woody debns (LWD) in the stream channel, the construction of rock weirs, the
excavation of off channel alcoves, riparian alder girdling, nparian alder removal, and
riparian fencing.

A long term monitoring plan was developed by the Oregon Department of Fish
and Wildlife, funded by the Oregon Wildlife Hentage Foundation. Implementation of the
monitoring program by ODFW staff with support from the University of Washington
School of Fisheries began with mapping of the project sites during summer 1995. The
initial monitonng was designed to examine the effectiveness of the stream projects in 1)
remaining stable through the first winter storm events, and 2) creating habitat attributes
which enhance coho salmon juvenile over-wintering habitat The initial winter survey of
the completed project areas was conducted between December 14-19, 1995. The
abundance of spawning fish was documented over a period from October 1995 tnrough
January 1996, The follow up survey of physical attributes was conducted between
March 16-23, 1996. Sampling of fish use in and adjacent to the project areas began on
March 16 and continued through April 25, 1996.

The habitat enhancement projects have undergone two winter stonm events, the first of
these events occurring in late November with a magnitude of about a five year
recurrence (Hubbard pers.comm. 1995). The second major extent, the "Flood of 96",
was much larger with recurrence intervals estimated at between 25 to 100 years,
depending on local conditions. The projects also experienced a wind stornn on Dec. 12,
1995 and a spring flood on April 24 and 25, 1996. It was believed that the wind stonm
would affect the dynamics of the sites through the addition of more large wood debris
into the stream channel. Riparian enhancement work, including alder girdling, alder
removal, and fencing was not evaluated as part of this initial survey. The riparian work
was not included because it was too eariy to recognize an affect from these types of

The objective of this report is to 1)summarize the results of the winter and spring project
sun/eys 2) evaluate the initial effectiveness of the in stream work, and 3) provide
preliminary recommendations for future projects.




Addition of Large Woody Debns (LWD)

Three main types of tree placement occurred in the projects completed in 1995.
These included; 1) falling trees directly into the stream channel, with no further
placement; 2) Placing cut trees into the channel and using natural anchoring
techniques such as wedging the trees in ripanan alders; and 3) placing trees into the
channel and using cable to anchor the trees in place. The only projects that used
cabling of trees were the S. Fof1< Wilson River and the S. Fork Little Nestucca River.
The S. Fork Wilson River was not included in the projects visited in the winter of 1995-
1996, and only one site on the S. Fork Little Nestucca River used cable. Due to a lack
of survey information, the use of cabling was not evaluated in this survey. The site
attributes that were observed for each piece of wood included size, location,
movement, anchor type, debris type, and whether or not the LWD was producing scour,
enhancing secondary channels, damming water, providing cover, trapping sediment, or
trapping additional woody debris. Whether or not a site was producing scour, damming
water, enhancing side channels or providing cover was used as an indication of
providing winter habitat enhancement for Coho Salmon.

The observation of whether or not a site was slowing or trapping sediments was
excluded from the December analysis due to the lack of consistency in water clarity and
subsequent lack of sediment visibility during that survey.

Off Channel Areas

The 17 off channel areas were observed for depth at entrance to the stream
channel, inflow and outflow, bank erosion, siltation, and cover, and fish use.

Rock Weirs

Only five rock weirs were observed at two projects. Most of the rock weirs
constructed in 1995 were built on the S. Fork. Wilson River and were not observed in
this survey. The construction methods used on the five rock weirs that were observed
did not include the use of cabling to anchor the rocks to each other, or to the stream
channel. Rock weirs were observed for the same basic characteristics as the tree
placements. Location and size of the rock weirs was not recorded in the survey.


Addition of LWD

At the North Coast Project sites, the flooding of 1996 in most cases resulted in
the maintenance or slight increase of habitat important to the over-wintering of coho
salmon (Table land 2, Figure 1) . The flooding caused more small debris movement in
the stream, which was trapped by the placed wood. This additional woody debris in
turn provides additional cover for juvenile fish Also associated with the flooding was


25-646 0-96-4


Increased area of secondary stream channels, and scouring of pools resulting in
increased channel depth

A short term detnmental effect of the major flooding was the loss of many of the
small debns dams that had developed dunng earlier high flow events The pools
associated with these debns dams were reduced or eliminated, which in turn lowered
the area of dammed pool habitat available to salmonids within the reach These small
debns dams were a result of the entrapment of fine organics, branches, and leaves
during the eariy winter storm events. The washout of these habitats is natural and many
of tne sites will collect small debns in future moderate flow events.

In the December and March project evaluations, it was noted that sites with
more than one piece of wood were more effective at providing the attributes of scour,
damming, cover, secondary channel habitat, and debris entrapment (Figure 2). In
March, 100% of the sites with three or more pieces of wood per site were trapping
additional debns and sediment, and providing cover (Figure 2). The amount of cover at
a given site is directly proportional to the amount of wood, either placed or entrained at
a site.

Full spanning debris jams provided the most area and highest quality of habitat,
regardless of the number of pieces of wood in a jam These jams have been created
through either a high number of pieces of wood at a site, or because a site has a large
volume of branches contacting the stream channel.

The movement of the key pieces of LWD placed in the stream channel was
actually less in March than the movement observed in the December survey. Only
three pieces that were more than one active channel width in length moved
downstream from where they were placed during the floods. All three of these pieces

1 2 3 4 5 6 8 10 11

Online LibraryWildlife United States. Congress. House. Committee on ResouNational Fish and Wildlife Foundation : oversight hearing before the Subcommittee on Fisheries, Wildlife, and Oceans of the Committee on Resources, House of Representatives, One Hundred Fourth Congress, second session, on the effectiveness of the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation and projects th → online text (page 8 of 11)