A Day in the Dunes

Last week the Conservation Research team headed out to the central Oregon coast for one of our first trips of the 2016 season! We met up with one of our partners, Marty Stein (USFS), and went to four sites within the Suislaw National Forest - Tahkenitch, Overlook South, Overlook North, and Siltcoos (from south to north). At these sites we were direct seeding pink sand-verberna (Abronia umbellata ssp. breviflora), which is listed by the Oregon Department of Agriculture as endangered and is considered a Species of Concern by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Direct seeding was done by scattering pink sand-verbena fruits; we walked along the beach and slowly released handfuls of material until it was all dispersed. At two of the sites - Overlook North and Siltcoos - we established three transects where we outplanted a line of 1000 ABUM (Abronia umbellata ssp. breviflora) seeds and approximately 263 GLLI (Glehnia littoralis ssp. leiocarpa) seeds; since we marked these transects with wooden stakes and GPS coordinates, we will be able to go back and see how these seeds do and if any germinate.

Siltcoos, right after a brief hail storm
Denise & Marty walking along a dune
a robust overwintering pink sand-verbena (marked with a wooden stake)

In September, when the breeding season of the Western Snowy Plover is over, we'll be back to these sites to monitor pink sand-verbena. Between now and then we have a whole variety of other projects that we'll be working on -- stay tuned!