Illuminated by Fire

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Now that most welcomed, cold rains have brought our fire season to an end, it seems constructive to reflect on some of the lessons reinforced by events in the past two months.  Though the fires are dwindling, the human suffering related to them is far from over; this is a time to focus on ways […]

BEE – ing

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Over the years, we’ve monitored a variety of things in our forests, from birds to amphibians and creek bugs to water temperatures. We’ve often talked about what else to add. Thanks to Molly’s work with native bees and Extension forester Amy Grotta’s encouragement to join her 2019 Oregon Bee Atlas monitoring outings at Matteson State […]

Timber Wars – How Helpful?

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Metaphors Matter – It’s Time for a Change:   There is so much that is right, good, and encouraging about the accord that was recently reached between representatives of the so called timber industry and conservation groups in Oregon, and there is one key element that is wrong.  I hope that we’ll all support the effort’s […]

The Last Call?

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Over the thirty plus years that our family has been connected to our current forests, we have listened and looked long and hard for Northern spotted owls. We know that at some time in the past they found suitable homes in these forests, but so far we have yet to encounter one.  But they nested […]

Our Focus on Outcomes – Some Tentative News

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As forest stewards we believe that intentions are nice, actions are good, but outcomes are what matter most.  Accordingly, we are always hungry for chances to assess outcomes. One of those chances came yesterday morning.  At 7:15 AM, not long after the near solstice sun came over the hill, we finished the last of three […]

Strangest Yet – The Day The Turtle Flew

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Over the years we have chalked up many strange events and mysterious phenomenon in the forests – but this week’s tops them all. The story is short and straightforward.  This Monday morning a member of the Hyla Woods team had just started a drive down from the 1,200′ top of Mt. Richmond when a remarkable […]

Flattening Both Curves – Covid 19 and Greenhouse Gases

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The Hyla Woods Team is continuing and ramping up our efforts to explore ways that we and our forests might make their greatest contribution to limiting and addressing the climate crisis. While we’re in the process of developing our updated plan of action, we started by working to better understand the larger, longer term context […]

A Remarkable and Exciting Success – (not ours :))

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It worked!  One of PhD candidate Hankyu Kim’s backpack wearing Hermit Wablers flew to Mexico and back bringing data to help answer the puzzle of where they over winter. Here’s the more complete story:  The heart of Hanku’s research is trying to expand knowledge about the ecology of Hermit Warblers, including answering the previously unanswered […]

Saved From Owls – by an Owl – Call?

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In the spirit of providing a little escapist diversion during these challenging times, here is a recounting of a recent, intense forest adventure and learning experience. Fair warning, dear readers, the risk and danger that we felt and describe may not be well founded, but there is no way to know. On the evening of […]

Uplift in the Time of the Virus

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Has the past week left you hungry for a little good news? If so, here’s some: These first hints of leafing out on this willow shoot are part of a larger, encouraging story. This uplifting window into spring (it has not been cancelled!) is thanks to work done in the winter of 2019 by students […]