Deschutes National Forest
1.8 million acres. Located in central Oregon
The Deschutes National Forest boasts the Cascade Mountains, splendid volcanic and glacial land formations, both alpine and evergreen forests, and gleaming lakes and rivers. Visitors in pursuit of adventure come for dog sledding and tubing. Northern spotted owls and black bears share the forest with the American kestrel. But continuing loss of old-growth Douglasfir and ponderosa pine is causing concern.
The Need for Trees
In July 2003, the searing Davis Fire burned 21,000 acres. Much old growth vanished into these flames, consuming the northern spotted owl’s habitat. The fire’s intensity left few trees for new seeds. Current data show only 1,200 pairs of northern spotted owls, an endangered species, remaining in Oregon — a species that doesn’t adapt well to habitat disturbances.
What We Are Doing
Planting a native mix of 505,000 ponderosa pine, Douglasfir, western white pine, sugar pine, and Englemann spruce will help reduce natural erosion while filtering water. New trees will restore healthy habitat for spotted owls and calving elk.