This summer, Bark will conduct wetland habitat surveys in Mt. Hood National Forest with the long-term goal of restoring these ecosystems and increasing their resilience to climate change. In this training, participants will learn to identify high-quality beaver habitat with the goal of identifying the best locations to reintroduce beavers and restore the population of this important species.
Beavers are a “keystone species”, meaning that they play a critical role in creating biodiversity and providing direct benefits to fish, wildlife, and people. Beaver dams create wetlands that help decrease the impacts of floods, recharge drinking water aquifers, protect watersheds from drought, decrease erosion, remove toxic pollutants, create habitat for threatened salmon, and so much more.
Sadly, beavers on this continent have struggled due to population devastation and habitat loss. By slaughtering millions of beavers and draining wetlands, European trappers and settlers impoverished ecosystems in the Cascade Mountains to such an extent from which they have not yet recovered. With Mt. Hood National Forest as the source of domestic water for more than one million people in Oregon and climate change an urgent reality, now is the time to energize beaver recovery in Mt. Hood National Forest!
This training is intended for people interested in becoming actively engaged in Bark’s Beaver Habitat Surveys and requires no previous experience. We rely on volunteer participation to conduct our work and ask that training participants commit to attend to at least 2 surveys throughout the 2022 field season (see Bark’s currently scheduled surveys here). In this training, we will learn to identify the components of high-quality beaver habitat, to locate the areas that need beavers the most, and to use Bark’s beaver survey scorecard. This training is a part of a series of wetland habitat trainings and we encourage participants to sign up for our Wetland Mapping training in June 2022.
This training will take place in the forest and space is limited. Please see Bark’s COVID safety protocol and driver expectations before signing up for the event. Participants will be expected to wear masks and follow any additional COVID-19 Protocol. Driving directions, training materials, and additional details will be sent to registrants before the event. The training location will be located in the Clackamas Ranger District of Mt. Hood National Forest and will be approximately a 1.5 hour drive from Portland. Participants coming from the Portland metro area will meet in Portland at 9am and return to Portland by 6pm. If you are coming from a location other than Portland, contact Misha VanEaton to coordinate an alternate meeting time and location.
Any questions? Email to Misha VanEaton (firstname.lastname@example.org), Bark’s Forest Watch Coordinator.