USDA Forest Service

Pacific Northwest Research Station

Pacific Northwest Research Station
333 SW First Ave.
Portland, OR 97204

(503) 808-2100

US Forest Service
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» Oregon Research

Elk management models improved

A wolverine in Glacier National Park in the summer.Photo by Rachel Cook

Elk hunting and viewing activities contribute greatly to rural economies. Elk, found across western Oregon and Washington, are managed by tribes, and state and federal land managers. However, elk management and habitat guidelines used were outdated.

Scientists at the station updated elk nutrition and habitat selection models using an innovative approach incorporating the latest research on nutrition and current spatial data. They also used radiotelemetry data from many sources and geographic areas to develop and validate these models.

The updated models are now used by federal agencies, Indian tribes, hunting organizations, and other interested groups, to coordinate management of elk and their habitat.

Contact: Mary Rowland,


More trees, less crime?

 Northern spotted owl .Photo by Rhonda Mazza

Neighborhoods with homes fronted with street trees experience lower crime rates, according to a study conducted in Portland, Oregon. The same statistic holds true for homes with large yard trees. These results hold for total-crime rates as well as specific property crimes such as vandalism and burglary.

Trees may reduce crime by signaling that a neighborhood is well cared for. These findings are consistent with the “broken window” hypothesis, which maintains that signs of neighborhood neglect, such as graffiti or untended yards, send a signal to potential criminals that residents may not take steps to protect their neighborhood.

The City of Portland’s Crime Prevention Program is incorporating these findings in its education and outreach work with public safety providers and other community members.

Contact: Geoffrey Donovan,


Trees, forests, and climate

YAn elk browses at the Starkey Experimental Forest and Range.Photo by Janet Ohmann

Several decades of research exist on the potential responses of trees and forests to climate-related stresses. This research has now been synthesized and organized around key themes like fire, pests, and more. Station scientists and colleagues at Oregon State University synthesized over 400 research articles addressing physiological and ecological responses of trees and forests to variations in climate and associated stresses and disturbance agents.

Although based on an international body of research, the synthesis highlights potential climate changes and responses from species and ecosystems in the Pacific Northwest. The authors identify options to managing for forest adaptation.

The synthesis is a resource when conducting forest vulnerability and risk assessments and planning adaptation strategies.

Contact: Paul D. Anderson,



Forest, inventory, analysis data

Photo by Jeremy Fried

Forest inventory empowers society with information about how our forests are changing. The annual inventory in Oregon is in the second year of remeasurement and will provide data on status and trends.

Land managers and policymakers at many levels use this statistically sound information to answer questions about forests across all lands in Oregon. For example, monitoring the effects of fires, insects, and disease is critical to helping land managers plan appropriate fuel treatments, thinning, and restoration efforts.

Data on biomass and carbon sequestration in Oregon forests provides the basis for emerging carbon markets and verification of international agreements.

Contact: Joe Donnegan,


Featured Scientist

Jane E. SmithJane E. Smith is a research botanist based at the station’s Corvallis Forestry Sciences Lab in Oregon. She is currently investigating belowground ecosystem dynamics and soil recovery after fire and salvage logging in forests east of the Cascade Range in Oregon. How an ecosystem recovers aboveground after a disturbance, like a fire, is directly linked to the survival of mycorrhizal fungi belowground.

Smith’s research findings are helping forest managers in selecting fuel-reducing restoration treatments that maintain critical soil processes. Her research also examines microbial interactions with nonnative invasive plants. She was the lead scientist on major field studies on the community ecology of truffle fungi. Smith has been with the station since 1987. She earned a B.A. in botany from Humboldt State
University and an M.S. in forest ecology and a Ph.D. in botany and plant pathology from Oregon State University.


Contact her at



Tools and Software


What effect do plant succession, natural disturbance, and land use and restoration practices have on the condition of riparian forests, channel morphology, and salmon habitat? The models were specifically designed for two watersheds in the interior Columbia River basin and in the Oregon Coast Range. Learn more


US Forest Service - Pacific Northwest Research Station
Last Modified: Tuesday,05August2014 at09:42:18CDT

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