Fish response to contemporary timber harvest practices in a second-growth forest from the central Coast Range of Oregon

Forest Ecology and Management
By: , and 

Links

Abstract

We used a paired-watershed approach to investigate the effects of contemporary logging practices on headwater populations of coastal cutthroat trout (Oncorhynchus clarkii clarkii) and juvenile coho salmon (Oncorhynchus kisutch) in a second-growth Douglas-fir forested catchment in Oregon. Stream habitat and fish population characteristics, including biomass, abundance, growth, size, and movement, were assessed over a 9-year period (4 years pre- and 5 years postlogging). The logged catchment was located on private industrial forestland and had been previously logged in 1966. The reference catchment was covered by an unharvested, fire-regenerated forest approximately 150–160 years old, which was unroaded and managed as a Research Natural Area by the USDA Forest Service. A single clearcut harvest unit of the upper 40% of the treatment catchment was implemented following current forest practice regulations, including the retention of riparian buffer of standing trees adjacent to fish bearing channels. No statistically significant negative effects on coastal cutthroat trout or coho salmon occurred following logging, and in fact, both late-summer density and total biomass of age-1+  coastal cutthroat trout increased in the logged catchment following logging. Increases in age-1+  coastal cutthroat were greatest closest to the harvest area and declined downstream as distance from the logged area increased. In contrast to the previous timber harvest in the catchment when few logging regulations existed, current forest practice regulations and logging techniques appear to have reduced acute negative effects on coastal cutthroat trout.

Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Fish response to contemporary timber harvest practices in a second-growth forest from the central Coast Range of Oregon
Series title Forest Ecology and Management
DOI 10.1016/j.foreco.2018.01.030
Volume 411
Year Published 2018
Language English
Publisher Elsevier
Contributing office(s) Northern Rocky Mountain Science Center
Description 16 p.
First page 142
Last page 157
Country United States
State Oregon