Late-successional forests and wildlife species associated with old-growth have received most of the attention from conservationists and public land managers since the 1980′s. But on the Corvallis Watershed and Siuslaw National Forest, open, early-successional stands have become increasingly uncommon. In an effort to preserve plant and animal species that are dependent on this important habitat type, OWI is collaborating with an interdisciplinary team to restore meadows along Old Peak Road on the east side of Marys Peak. OWI senior wildlife biologist Dave Vesely has been monitoring birds at these sites since 2011. A pre-treatment monitoring report was prepared in 2013 (.pdf, 1.8 Mb download)
There are some early indications that the avian community is responding to habitat changes on the meadows. Two early-successional species never before observed at the City restoration site, the white-crowned sparrow and house wren, appeared during the 2016 breeding season. There is some evidence that woodpeckers are also becoming more common, possibly in response to the snags being deliberately created along the meadow edge. OWI will continue to monitor birds and their habitats at Old Peak Road until 2018. Project partners are the City of Corvallis Department of Public Works, Siuslaw National Forest, Institute of Applied Ecology, Oregon Hunters Association, and Trout Mountain Forestry.