Date: 10/10/17 7:39 am From: Lars Per Norgren <larspernorgren...> Subject: [obol] Re: [boo] Re: Skinner's Butte "deforestation"
I never meant to dismiss the concept of restoration out-of-hand, nor
the motives of its administrators. I see it as a growth industry that should
get better over time, not repeat the same mistakes on a growing scale.
Baseline data can be collected for a very small part of most projects'
budgets, but I believe it is routinely and consciously omitted from these
projects in the interest of saving money.
I think any regular birder on Mt Tabor would agree that species diversity
has not suffered from the restoration there. It certainly makes birds easier to
see, and the undergrowth would have grown exponentially w/o intervention.
I'll bet places like Flycatcher Corner would have ceased to function as we
know them in a few more years.
The absence of ivy on Mt Tabor is something everyone takes for granted,
yet I believe it my be the result of 100s, even 1000s of hours of volunteer
work. The Rock Wren present for many days this past spring was foraging
on the bases of Douglas-firs that recently had been buried in ivy.
In the industrial world far more open landscapes and their accompanying
biota are being lost passively to afforestation than to "development", urban
sprawl, whatever you want to call it. In large areas of North America it is no
longer possible to find nesting Bobolinks, Meadowlarks, or Grasshopper
Sparrows but if you put up a birdfeeder a Black Bear will visit your house.
The debate on managing forests for fire safety, the expense of reducing
fuel loads, is a major public issue, but is also a small part of a much bigger
challenge. Pretty much all landscapes outside of arid climates are being
overgrown and the logistics of reversing the process are mind boggling.
The agricultural sector is struggling to get enough workers. In a better
world where funding wouldn't even be an issue, there still is no labor
force to do the job.lpn
On Oct 9, 2017, at 8:03 PM, Wayne Hoffman wrote:
> Hi -
> I also appreciate Lars' wit and intellect, but I would like to provide a less-cynical view of "restoration."
> There are 2 philosophical approaches to "restoration" currently in play in Oregon and elsewhere (there are probably others, too).
> The first approach attempts to return land (or waters) to the conditions it was in at some "pristine" time in the past.
> The second is focused on "restoring function," meaning creating conditions where "natural processes"can maintain the area as productive habitat.
> The first depends a lot on early aerial photography, surveyor's records, journals of early explorers, etc. The biggest downfalls are a lack of appreciation for natural habitat change through time, and failure to recognize that often too much has changed for the approach to succeed.
> The second prefers to use an understanding of ecological processes and of current constraints (climate, boundary conditions, introduced biota) to design a "restored" area that will exhibit a "sustainable trajectory" maintaining a chosen set of habitat parameters stay within a desired range (often defined by the needs of selected target species). Major issues here are too-narrow definitions of desired conditions, and inadequate understanding of the ecological processes at play.
> A big problem with both is a tendency to declare success far too soon and too easily.
>> On 10/9/2017 5:30:04 PM, Joel Geier <joel.geier...> wrote: