Restoring Riparian Habitats Field Training
If you have any issues please email Vanessa.Schroeder@oregonstate.edu
Do you manage or have interest in restoring healthy creeks, streams, or rivers in Oregon rangelands?
Join us on June 27th and 28th at the Rinker Rock Creek Ranch in Idaho for the SRM Field Tour, or on August 28th and 29th in Baker, Oregon for a SageCon Partnership Sponsored workshop hosted by OSU Extension, University of Idaho Rangeland Center, USFWS, and The Nature Conservancy. This training is geared towards novices to experts and will introduce participants to a new guide:
Threat-Based Management for Creeks, Streams, and Rivers: A Manager’s Guide for Understanding and Managing Flowing Waters in the Northern Great Basin.
This training will provide skills to rapidly assess conditions of rivers, streams, and creeks throughout the sagebrush steppe of Oregon and support decisions related to management of these resources. The afternoon session will build on the assessment framework and will highlight planning, permitting, and partnering opportunities as well as monitoring and adaptive management.
Mesic areas (including riparian zones and meadows) provide a host of services and benefits to humans and wildlife and the restoration of these areas on public and private lands is a focus of many programs and funding sources. This workshop will bring together several aspects of the restoration process and provide attendees an overview of how to strategically plan and carryout a restoration project. The workshop will cover the following topics: stream assessment in order to identify key threats, implementation framework including permitting and consideration of specific techniques, and monitoring approaches to determine if objectives are met.
Restoring mesic areas has emerged as a priority for numerous federal and state agencies and recent changes to statutory language have authorized new funding sources to support its implementation. However, there remain a number of barriers related to prioritizing restoration areas, assembling collaboratives, identifying and acquiring funding, navigating permitting, and assessing impacts. Moreover, mesic area management can, itself, be a flash point for range managers and land owners, whether it concerns resources for terrestrial species like sage-grouse, in-stream habitat for fish, water for irrigation, or forage for livestock. Restoring mesic areas (broadly defined here to include both riparian and meadow systems) to their fully functioning state has the potential to provide multiple ecosystem benefits and has received increasing attention and funding.
Despite the importance and interest in these restoration approaches, there remain few resources that provide land managers with a start-to-finish guide for developing comprehensive projects. This workshop/field day will bridge that gap by providing an overview of approaches to assess, implement, and monitor mesic area restoration. Workshop participants will learn key concepts and approaches that will allow them to both develop a high-level strategic plan for restoring mesic areas and communicate that plan to others. This workshop will focus on low-tech, low-cost process-based approaches, but the concepts can be broadly applied to other restoration techniques.
Why should you register?
- Healthy streams enhance forage availability alongside fish and wildlife habitat and can help the bottom line of a ranching operation.
- Addressing risks early reduces restoration costs.
- Streams are complex — in this training we’ll focus on simple concepts and readily recognizable indicators important for nearly all management needs.
Part 1: Threat-based Stream Assessment
This tool rapidly assesses conditions of perennial and intermittent lotic (flowing) systems and supports decisions related to management of these mesic resources.
As a decision-support tool, threat-based assessment is not an instruction manual; it is, instead, a tool for understanding riparian function to help managers decide which riparian areas are functioning as they should, and which are not, as well as a general roadmap for maintaining the former and remediating the latter.
The intent is to provide a tool that is usable by a wide variety of natural resource professionals or land managers. This presentation will provide land managers with tools to understand relevant threats to the ecosystem, become familiar with ecological states, learn how to determine apparent trend and ultimately prioritize areas for management actions.
Part 2: Implementation Steps: Regulatory Requirements, Partners & Setting Expectations
Process-based stream restoration techniques provide land managers a low-cost, low-tech approach to improving stream and riparian habitat. However, the implementation of process-based restoration approaches can still prove difficult to navigate. Many steps need to occur before implementation, including project permitting, funding, and design.
Understanding how to navigate these steps can avoid project delays and disruptions. This presentation provides a framework for taking a project from concept to application. Participants will learn how to identify and avoid common mistakes when planning a restoration project, as well as how to navigate the permitting process.
The framework will describe common funding sources, as well as typical partners who can help with the process. Finally, a discussion of common practices used in process-based restoration will be covered, with a focus on the purpose and some typical challenges of each.
Part 3: Monitoring Framework & Adaptive Management
Monitoring outcomes of restoration projects is an important component of projects that is often overlooked because of costs, time, and the difficulty of describing discrete monitoring objectives. Yet without monitoring, many projects are unable to describe if the project was a success or failure, or when maintenance or adaptive management should occur.
In process-based restoration in particular, monitoring a process rather than a designed end-state is often difficult, especially because the timeline for these processes to show significant changes can take years. This presentation will focus on how participants can conceptualize the processes they hope to engage in a restoration project and explore indicators and approaches useful for monitoring those processes. Participants will have the opportunity to use this information to develop the conceptual framework for an adaptive management plan that could be used in a project of their choice.
Online Video Training for Riparian Threat-Based Land Management
Online Web Based Training for Threat-Based Land Management
Threat-Based Land Management Course for Rangeland Management Using Google Earth Pro, GIS Online
Private and public land managers across the western sagebrush steppe closely observe how management impacts plant communities. Sometimes these observations are documented while other times they are not. Global Information Systems (GIS), such as Google Earth Pro (GEP) provide a powerful digital mapping platform to allow land managers to track, visualize and share inventoried and monitored data. Maps can serve as effective communication tools and GIS can allow managers to incorporate free extensive remotely sensed data that can aide land managers in rangeland management decisions, such as historic fire layers, soils data and fine fuels information.
Click the button below to access the self-paced course to equip land owners and natural resource professionals with a science-based framework and skills to develop land management plans and virtual maps of lands they manage. The online course will walk learners through principles needed to create effective land management plans using a Threat-based Land Management ecological framework, as well as skills directly related to creating a virtual map of managed land within GEP.