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From Field to Floodplain Forest

When RRWC embarked on the undertaking of its largest restoration project to date on South Fork Little Butte Creek RM 6.2, there was a lot planning that needed to be done -- and planting too.


Native plants waiting to be planted in the restored floodplain forest.

Restoration sites are chosen based on a variety of components including landowner willingness, available habitat, recorded fish and wildlife, and geomorphology (landform and landform evolution).


When selecting the South Fork Little Butte Creek RM 6.2 project, RRWC Restoration Biologist, Lance Wyss, used Light Detection and Ranging (LIDAR) mapping to gain an understanding of how the land and streams looked historically. From this research he determined that the present day pasture was once a, wait for it, floodplain forest - complete with a seasonal secondary channel.


After reconnecting the secondary channel in the summer, Lance and High Country Landscaping slogged through the muddy secondary channel to begin the years-long process of replanting the floodplain forest.



On most restoration project we employ the Release & Recruit strategy in riparian rehabilitation. However, when facing decades of native plant suppression and pasture-use in the recovering floodplain forest, supplementary planting was necessary.



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