Environment

Wildlife
6:37 am
Tue June 17, 2014

Not Much Refuge In Klamath Basin For Migratory Birds

An ibis at the Lower Klamath National Wildlife Refuge.
Credit Devan Schwartz / Earthfix

A prolonged drought is putting pressure on water supplies for the Klamath Basin’s wildlife refuges. EarthFix’s Devan Schwartz reports on how the nation’s original waterfowl refuge may be too dry this summer to provide a stopover for millions of migratory birds. It's part two in our series, Refuges in Trouble.
 

In 1908, Teddy Roosevelt designated the Lower Klamath Lake refuge to protect millions of migrating birds.

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Environment
8:01 am
Mon June 16, 2014

Turning Around Malheur Refuge One Carp Carcass At A Time

It took a backhoe to dump some of the carp removed from Malheur Lake during a recent fishing operation.
Credit Devan Schwartz / Earthfix

What could be the largest carp removal project in history is underway at the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge in Southeast Oregon.

EarthFix’s Devan Schwartz reports on the attempts to curb the invasive fish that has destroyed bird habitat for decades.

Minnesota fishermen are pulling in thousands upon thousands of carp from Malheur Lake, the main feature of the national wildlife refuge.

Tim Adams tosses carp from net to boat.

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Fire Season
1:21 pm
Fri June 13, 2014

Burn Ban Starts Monday In Most Oregon Counties

This weekend is the last chance for backyard and open burning in many places in Oregon. Lane, Linn, Benton and Marion Counties have all declared June 15 as the last day.

Neil Miller is with the Oregon Department of Forestry. He says early this year, they considered starting the burn ban sooner than usual. But spring rains relieved their concerns about fire danger:

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Gray Wolves
7:25 am
Fri June 13, 2014

The Wolf At The Door: California Wrestles With A Predator’s Return

The wolf known as OR7.
Credit US Fish and Wildlife

It’s been ninety years since the last native California wolf was trapped and killed. Last week, Oregon wildlife officials announced that OR-7, the wolf they’ve tracked wandering in and out of northern California, had found a mate and fathered a new litter in southern Oregon. That news contributes to the growing sense that it’s only a matter of time till wolves re-inhabit the Golden State. Against this backdrop, California wildlife officials extended endangered species status to the gray wolf.

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Climate Change
11:42 am
Wed June 11, 2014

Oregon Appeals Court Sends Climate Suit Back to Lane County Judge

Judges on the Oregon Court of Appeals.
Credit courts.oregon.gov

A lawsuit brought by two Eugene teens against the state over climate change will get a second hearing in Lane County Circuit Court. The Oregon Court of Appeals Wednesday  ruled the case has merit.

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Climate Change
6:42 am
Wed June 11, 2014

Eugene Teen Continues Work to Combat Climate Change

18-year old Kelsey Juliana will graduate from South Eugene High School Saturday.
Credit Rachael McDonald

The Oregon Court of Appeals is expected to issue its ruling Wednesday in a lawsuit filed by two teens who want the state to do more to prevent climate change. One of the plaintiffs in the case, Kelsey Juliana, is about to graduate from high school. KLCC's Rachael McDonald spoke with her recently about what's next.

I met up with Kelsey Juliana at Amazon Park. As we walked the 18 year old told me her plans.

Juliana: "I will be graduating from South Eugene High School June 14th. And then, I will be leaving mid-July to join the Great March for Climate Action."

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Environment & Salmon
3:28 am
Tue June 10, 2014

Trying To Bring Back A Wild Spring Chinook Run Above Cougar Dam

The Portable Floating Fish Collector will be at Cougar Reservoir for the next two years, catching newly-hatched wild Chinook Salmon to be transported to the bottom of Cougar Dam.
Credit Angela Kellner

Behind Cougar Dam on the reservoir is a new project of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. It’s a Portable Floating Fish Collector, or PFFC. It's about the size of a tennis court. It's moored in place, but can be moved around the body of water to find the sweet spot. After a two-year trial run, it will be disassembled, loaded onto trucks and taken to either Lookout Point or Detroit Reservoir.

Greg Taylor: "My name is Greg Taylor, I'm a fish biologist for the Corps of Engineers at the Willamette Valley project. We operate a number of fish facilities at the dams and then we've got this brand new facility that we're bringing on line here at Cougar Reservoir.

The long-term goal of this project is to get a sustainable run of wild Spring Chinook established above Cougar Dam. The Portable Floating Fish Collector that we're working with today captures juvenile fish in the reservoir so that we can transport them safely downstream.

Shortly after the dam went in place, they were evaluating whether they could establish a run of fish above the dam and it didn't work for a number of reasons. We had temperature issues associated with the dam. So the trap and haul and the downstream passage systems that we had just didn't work so at that time they made a decision to produce hatchery fish in mitigation for the old system that was in place. We've got fish listed on the Endangered Species Act. There's an emphasis on wild fish and wild fish production and so this project is really trying to move towards getting those wild fish reestablished above the dam.

It's sort of a stationary fish vacuum. We've got water being pulled into the throat and then fish go over this velocity barrier and then get caught in a little trap down there and then we'll be able to bring the fish up and then we process them and transport them downstream.

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Environment
3:18 pm
Tue June 3, 2014

Environmental Organizer Thomas Linzey To Speak in Eugene, Wednesday, June 4th

Credit paxonbothhouses.blogspot
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Natural History
10:40 am
Thu May 29, 2014

UO Museum Digs Into Millions Of Years Of Oregon's History

A sculpture of the saber-tooth salmon that lived in Oregon millions of years ago. The replica of it's skull made with a 3D printer is on the counter below.
Credit Rachael McDonald

A giant sloth and an even larger saber-toothed salmon once lived in Oregon, millions of years ago. These creatures are some of the highlights of a new exhibit at the U of O's Museum of Natural and Cultural History in Eugene. The grand opening is Friday evening.

"Explore Oregon" features a collection of fossils and other geologic items the museum has had for a long time but never put on display. Project Director Ann Craig says, with the museum's recent expansion, there's finally enough space to share the collection with the University and greater community.

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Population
2:32 pm
Tue May 27, 2014

Salem Still Tops Eugene as Oregon's "Second City"

According to census estimates released last week for cities of 50 thousand or more,  Salem has once again nosed out Eugene as the state’s second largest city.  As of July 2013,  Eugene’ s population was about 159 thousand, while Salem topped  160, 000.

Portland remains Oregon’s largest city by a factor of four.  Bend was the clear state leader in percent of population growth last year at two-point-nine.  Eugene, Springfield, Salem and Corvallis all saw small population gains, with none registering as much as one percent.

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