Oregon Dept. of Forestry
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Humans cause the majority of wildfires on lands protected by the Oregon Dept. of Forestry, like these wildfires -caused wildfires along I-5 in Douglas County. The good news is that there were fewer than average human-caused wildfires in August.
Humans cause the majority of wildfires on lands protected by the Oregon Dept. of Forestry, like these wildfires -caused wildfires along I-5 in Douglas County. The good news is that there were fewer than average human-caused wildfires in August.
State Forestry encouraged by public fire prevention efforts, with fewer human-caused wildfires in August (Photo) - 09/05/18

SALEM, Ore. – The 2018 fire season has been filled with challenges. Through August, 839 fires have burned an estimated 69,600 acres on the nearly 16 million acres of lands protected by the Oregon Department of Forestry alone.  Acres affected by wildfires on all jurisdictions in Oregon represent more than 748,000 acres to date in 2018.

However, there is a silver lining to this story. The month of August, considered the peak of fire season, showed a decrease in human-caused fires in comparison to the 10-year average. In all, people were responsible for 138 wildfires, a 10-percent drop from the 10-year average of 153. Fires resulting from campfires (6) were down 50 percent (12) and vehicle related fires (9) were down 40 percent from the average (15). The largest drop came from illegal debris burning, where just two fires occurred compared to the 10-year average of 13. This represents a nearly 85-percent decrease.

“This is very encouraging,” says ODF Fire Prevention Coordinator Tom Fields. “I’d like to think that people are starting to get it. Oregon is a beautiful place to live, but it does come with the risk of fire, especially from May through October. We are hopeful that the trend continues and that we can end 2018 on a high note. But we still have a long way to go.”

While more than 44,000 acres burned on ODF protected lands have been attributed to fires started by lightning (210), the number of human-caused fires represents 75 percent of all ignitions. The leading culprits behind a number of these fires are those burning illegally (99), drivers of poorly maintained vehicles (57) and campers failing to properly extinguish campfires (37). Other fire causes include power lines, mowing dry grass, fireworks and smoking. Nearly 60 wildfires are still under investigation.

Fields says that the end of fire season generally lasts through October when several days of significant rainfall saturates the landscape. Each ODF protection district makes that determination based on conditions in their respective areas. For now, fire restrictions remain in place and the public is encouraged to keep up the good work. Log on to https://www.oregon.gov/ODF/Fire/Pages/Restrictions.aspx for the latest on fire restrictions in your area or where you plan to travel.

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Celebrate nature's beauty at Tillamook Forest Center's Root Ball fundraiser on Saturday, Sept. 22 - 08/30/18

Tillamook, Ore – The Tillamook Forest Center’s Root Ball is set for Saturday, Sept. 22, and you’re invited to celebrate the forest’s bounty in elegance with an old-fashioned picnic on the bridge overlooking the Wilson River.

Step back in time as we nourish the future of the Tillamook Forest Center. Time-honored traditions, the Nightwood Society’s wholesome food, friends, and music will fill the forest. Funds raised will support furnishings and equipment for the new Forest Education Pavilion.

Tickets are $75. Please register by September 15. To buy your ticket, head to http://bit.ly/2018RootBall.

Dress in your fancy picnic best! For some, this might mean dressy casual. Others may choose their top turn-of-the-20th-century piece, keeping with the evening's occasion. Note that high-heeled shoes should not be worn due to safety concerns with the bridge board spacing.

The evening starts at 5:30 p.m. with activities in the new Education Pavilion and a Silent Auction. Dinner and a live auction follow.

About the Tillamook Forest Center: The Tillamook Forest Center is a special place to develop a deeper connection with Oregon’s forests through experience and exploration. The Center is located 50 miles west of Portland and 22 miles east of Tillamook on Oregon Highway 6. The Center is open Wednesday through Sunday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. (fall hours).

Committee for Family Forestlands meets Sept. 11 in Salem - 08/29/18

SALEM, Ore. – The Committee for Family Forestlands will meet Tuesday, Sept. 11 from 10 a.m. to noon. The meeting will be via conference call and hosted in the Clatsop Room of Building C on the Oregon Department of Forestry campus, 2600 State Street in Salem. The committee will receive updates about:

  • Recent work of ODF’s Private Forests Division
  • The 2018 fire season
  • The Forest Zone Dwelling Allowance
  • Wildlife food plots

The meeting is open to the public. Public comments will be accepted near the start of the meeting after approval of the minutes. The meeting space is accessible to persons with disabilities. Requests for an interpreter for the hearing impaired or other accommodations for persons with disabilities should be made at least 48 hours before the meeting by calling Susan Domenique at 503-945-7502.

The 13-member committee researches policies that affect family forests, natural resources and forestry benefits. Based on its findings, the committee recommends actions to the Oregon Board of Forestry and the State Forester. You can find more information at 

https://www.oregon.gov/ODF/Board/Pages/CFF.aspx

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Board of Forestry meets Sept. 5 in Salem, update on 2018 Fire Season tops agenda - 08/28/18

Date:  Aug. 28, 2018

Contact:  Hilary Olivos-Rood, Board of Forestry Administrator, 503-945-7210

 

 

Salem, Ore. – The Oregon Board of Forestry’s Sept. 5 meeting will begin with an update of the 2018 fire season. The public meeting is scheduled to start at 9 a.m. and run through approximately 4:30 p.m. A brief Executive Session will follow.

The meeting will be held in the Tillamook Room, Administration Building C, at the Oregon Department of Forestry Headquarters, located at 2600 State St., in Salem. The meeting is open to the public. Public comment will be accepted on all agenda topics. There will also be time for public comment at the start of the meeting for topics not on the agenda. A livestream option will be available for those who wish to view the meeting remotely. Details for accessing the livestream will be available at https://www.oregon.gov/ODF/Board/Pages/BOFMeetings.aspx.

Other agenda items for the meeting include:

  • Annual Forest Practices Monitoring Update – The Monitoring Unit, housed within the Private Forests Division, will provide an update on their work over the past six months. The focus will be on results from the 2017 Compliance Audit, as well as progress on monitoring projects that assess the effectiveness of streamside protections.
  • 2017 Forest Health Report – The Forest Health Unit, also housed within the Private Forests Division, will provide an update on recent trends and occurrences of forest insects, disease, and noxious weeds. Topics will also include an introduction to the Agency’s role in the Oregon Bee Project.
  • Forest Trust Lands Advisory Committee testimony – The Forest Trust Lands Advisory Committee (FTLAC) advises the Board of Forestry on State Forests policy. A representative from the FTLAC will provide comments and information to the Board.
  • State Forests Resource Assessment – To provide context for forest management planning, the State Forests Division will provide an overview of the current status and condition of forest resources on state forest lands in western Oregon.
  • Land Use Change on Non-Federal Land in Oregon and Washington, 1974 - 2014 – The Partnership and Planning Program will provide an overview of land use change on different types of non-federal land, such as farms and forests, in Oregon and Washington between 1974 and 2014.

Meeting materials are available at www.oregon.gov/ODF/Board/Pages/BOFMeetings.aspx.

Accommodations for people with disabilities, and special materials, services, or assistance can be arranged by calling ODF’s Public Affairs Office, at least 48 hours in advance of the meeting, at 503-945-7200.

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The Oregon Board of Forestry consists of seven citizens nominated by the Governor and confirmed by the Oregon Senate. Responsibilities include appointing the State Forester, setting management direction for state-owned forests, adopting rules governing timber harvest and other practices on private forestland, and promoting sustainable management of Oregon’s 30 million-acre forestland base. More information about the Board is available at: www.oregon.gov/ODF/Board/Pages/AboutBOF.aspx.

Oregon Dept. of Forestry announces gate closures for hunting seasons - 08/24/18

The Oregon Department of Forestry (ODF) will resume road restrictions this fall in the western part of the Tillamook State Forest to improve deer and elk escapement during hunting season.

Some roads will be closed to motorized use during the general archery and rifle hunting seasons in September, October and November. Selected roads in the Trask, Wilson and Nehalem River areas will be gated and signed. Controlled access during the three-month period is designed to reduce hunting pressure in these areas.

Hunters and other recreational users are welcome to access the gated areas by foot, mountain bike, horse or other non-motorized means.

ODF is partnering with the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW) and Tillamook Chapter of the Oregon Hunters Association in this program. The partnership has been in place 15 years now and the location of gates changes year-to-year based on access needs, stand conditions and operations.

Motorized access by ODF staff or contractors working in those areas may occur on occasion. Maps of the road management areas are available at the Tillamook ODF office located at 5005 Third St., Tillamook and at the ODF website at http://www.oregon.gov/ODF/Recreation/Pages/RoadClosure.aspx . Once at this link go to “Tillamook State Forest Road Report” to find the maps.

Another location to find maps and information is at the Tillamook State Forest blog at http://tillamookstateforest.blogspot.com/

If you have questions about the road management program, contact Gary Baker at the Tillamook ODF office at 503-842-2545, or Herman Biederbeck at the Tillamook ODFW office at 503-842-2741.