Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife

Conservation groups have gotten the go-ahead to challenge wolf de-listing in Oregon.  a state court of appeals judge says the lawsuit can go forward despite recent legislation.


Bow hunting season opened in Oregon over the weekend. Local land managers are welcoming visitors to the forests, but they have several cautions.

Recent rains and cooler temperatures have brought a taste of fall.

But Jude McHugh of the Willamette National Forest says the moisture hasn’t penetrated the tree canopy, and fire danger remains high:

River Design Group

It can be tough for salmon and steelhead returning to spawn in Northwest rivers and streams. High water temperatures, parasites, and predators all pose natural threats.

But the fish also encounter man-made obstacles – like dams - that make getting to the best spawning habitat difficult.

Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife

Oregon is reviewing how it protects wildlife and habitat. This means reviewing numerous planning documents and asking the public's input.

ODFW: Philip Milburn

The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife has been studying kit foxes since 2012. Recently, they captured rare video of two adults and their five playful pups.

Kit foxes are a diminutive desert animal, just four to six pounds. They’re listed as a sensitive species in Oregon, with a small or declining population. Meghan Dugan with ODFW says Malheur and Harney Counties are as far north as the species has been found:

Tony Schick / Earthfix

The U.S. is increasing its efforts to combat global wildlife trafficking. But resources have diminished for catching poachers stateside.

For our series on wildlife crimes, EarthFix reporter Tony Schick takes us to Central Oregon, where Fish and Wildlife troopers are struggling to protect a mule deer population that’s in decline

BEAN: “ Hello .... State Police ...“

Oregon Fish and Wildlife Trooper Darin Bean is searching a home in the backwoods of La Pine, Oregon.

BEAN: “Boy, there’s a lot of little rooms in this place …”

What Does Species Recovery Look Like For Wolves?

May 5, 2015
Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife

Desmond: Since wolves first started returning to Washington and Oregon in the late 1990s, the population has been increasing steadily – especially over the past few years.

Now wildlife officials are taking a look at the species’ protected status. In late April, the Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission initiated the process of removing wolves from the state’s endangered species list.

All this brings up questions of whether the wolf has actually recovered enough to dial back protections.

With me now with some answers is EarthFix Correspondent Jes Burns.

State Audit Shows Problems With The ODFW's Business Model

Apr 20, 2015
Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife

A decline in revenue at the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife is putting the agency's financial health at risk. A recent audit from the Secretary of State is raising questions about the Department's business model.

Since the 1970's, fewer people have been buying hunting and fishing licenses, which analysts say is a reflection of a nationwide trend. The licenses are the largest part of the ODFW's annual operating budget; it generated more than a billion dollars in 2013. Gary Blackmer is the Director of the Secretary of State's Audit Division.

500 Mule Deer To Be Collared In Blue Mountains

Mar 2, 2015

Sunday the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife begun the process of collaring about 500 mule deer in the Southern Blue Mountain Range near Prineville.

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:

Rick Swart/ODFW

Oregonians who receive assistance from food banks might find an expensive - and tasty item in their boxes this winter.

The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife says a banner run of Chinook and Coho has allowed them to donate 175-tons of salmon to the Oregon Food Bank. It will be distributed to food banks across the state.

KLCC's Angela Kellner spoke to Rick Swart with the ODFW.

Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife

The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife is recommending a rule change making barbed hooks legal inside certain areas of the lower Willamette River as well as Youngs Bay and Gnat Creek near Astoria.

Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife

The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife is looking to acquire two parcels of land in the Willamette Valley. The plan for both properties is to restore them to their natural habitat and make them available for public use.


The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife has some new tools to help anglers avoid fishing in designated marine reserve areas off the coast. There's a new app for both apple and android smart phones called "Fish Alerts" that displays borders for all protected areas and includes rule summaries. Stacy Galleher is ODFW's Community Outreach Coordinator.

Galleher: "It's hard to pop out a paper map and know exactly where you are, and it's just more intuitive as we keep going with technology that people are looking to their electronic devices to know where they are."


Conservation groups are urging Governor John Kitzhaber and the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife to reject part of a proposal to expand black bear hunting tags in Southwest Oregon.


A remarkable rebound for salmon in Oregon has led to a bountiful fishing season. It's also meant fishing quotas are being met early, resulting in the closure of one river.

Wild coho season on the Umpqua River will end October first, when biologists predict the quota of 2,000 fish will be met. Jessica Sall is with the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife:

Sall: "We do want to remind anglers that the river is still open for hatchery coho, or those fish that have their adipose fin clipped."

Study To Show Return For Fall Chinook On Siuslaw River

Aug 22, 2014
Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife

This fall, biologists from the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife will capture adult Chinook salmon in the Siuslaw River near Mapleton. It's part of a study to estimate this year's return. The last time a study this extensive was conducted was 8 years ago.


Oregon’s highway system has about 35 thousand culverts built in to allow safe passage for fish. According to the Oregon Department of Transportation, about one third of those are in poor condition and need to be replaced. But funding those repairs has become difficult as ODOT’s budget continues to experience shortfalls. An agreement between ODOT and the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife could be a solution.

Leaburg Hatchery

The trout and sturgeon show pond at the Leaburg Hatchery on the McKenzie River will be closed for renovations beginning Monday, July 7.

The construction is expected to take 4 to 6 weeks. The show pond will be off-limits but the rest of the hatchery will remain open to the public.

Hatchery Manager Erik Withalm says they have 70 to 90-thousand visitors each year. The show pond has large rainbow trout and a 9-foot long, 350-pound sturgeon.

Early this morning, a 9-1-1 caller reported seeing a mountain lion and a cub near Maury Jacobs Park in Eugene.

The 6:20 a.m. mountain lion sighting has not been confirmed. Eugene police visited the area after the call, and a state fish and wildlife trooper came later. Neither were able to locate the animals and there have been no further sightings. Brian Wolfer is the District Wildlife Officer.

Oregon Ocean Information

The Oregon legislature recently designated two areas along the coast as marine reserves. The state hopes to involve the public in the new sites.

Cape Perpetua north of Florence and Cascade Head near Lincoln City join two marine reserves already protected by a 2012 law. In 2016, Cape Falcon near Cannon Beach will round out the coastal sites.

Jes Burns

A volunteer-run fish conservation group in Florence is shifting focus nearly two months after suffering a significant set-back.  The Salmon and Trout Enhancement Program, or “STEP,” lost all the newly-hatched Coho from their hatchery on Munsel Creek.  Despite the tenor of media reports at the time, the loss is relatively insignificant from an ecological standpoint.  It's the group's work with local students that’s affected most.  

In the first of a two part series, KLCC’s Jes Burns looks at the hatchery loss and why ODFW decided not to pursue an investigation.

Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife

The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife has suspended its efforts to trap a third cougar in the Hendricks Park area of Eugene.  The agency says remote cameras have not spotted the cougar since Friday, March 14.  They have also not received any reports of sightings. 

ODFW caught and killed two cougars around the park last week after reports of local livestock deaths.  

Officials have now removed the cougar traps, but are continuing to monitor the area with cameras.  ODFW advises residents and visitors to the park to keep dogs leashed.

Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife

Oregon wildlife biologists have trapped and killed a second cougar near Hendricks Park in Eugene. A trap was set for a third cougar believed to be in the area. 

Last week, Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife trapped and killed an adult female suspected of killing goats and chickens at a home near the park.
Dennehy: "We set a trail camera at the site and that revealed the presence of a 2nd young cougar. That cougar entered the empty coop where the chickens had been killed last week."

Rodent Poisoning Harms Wildlife, Raptors

Dec 26, 2013

The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife noticed an uptick of wild animals killed by rodent poison this fall.

ODFW Veterinarian Julia Burco says a lot of times, the problem stems from people not reading directions carefully enough. She says people may notice they have rodent problems but might not think of the consequences of other animals directly or indirectly ingesting bait.

Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife

Updated  10-29-13

The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife says two of its employees were injured Monday in a helicopter accident near Days Creek.  ODFW identifies the two passengers as 34-year-old Holly Huchko and 35-year-old Eric Himmelreich, both of whom work out of the Roseburg office for the Umpqua Fish District.  Huchko suffered a broken back and Himmelreich broke two vertebrae.  Pilot Fred Wittlake suffered broken ribs and a broken arm.