The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW) is looking to acquire 10,000 acres of land on the Lower Deschutes River Canyon.
ODFW's purchase of this massive plot of land would add to the existing eight thousand acre Lower Deschutes Wildlife Area. The plot encompasses most of the Oak Creek Watershed.
ODFW wildlife biologist Jeremy Thompson explains why this is appealing:
"We'll be able to own almost an entire watershed of steelhead spawning stream within the Deschutes River Basin, as well as prime mule deer and big horn sheep habitat. It's also in a landscape that doesn't have a lot of public property and access for recreationalists to enjoy."
The parcel was formerly range land. If acquired, parts of the land would be restored and hunting, fishing, and wildlife viewing opportunities would be granted to the public.
ODFW is working with the Trust for Public Land to purchase the acreage with grant money.
Members of the public can learn more and provide comment at a meeting at The Dalles ODFW Screen Shop on Thursday at 6 p.m. Or, comments can be sent from the ODFW website.