Restoring the land for wildlife and people: Seven years of restoration at Champoeg Prairie

By Michel Wiman May 2020 Please note: IAE’s work at Champoeg Prairie is currently on hold due to COVID-19. Willamette Valley native prairies occupy less than 1% of their original range, and are now among North America’s rarest ecosystems. Once blanketing the Willamette Valley with diverse forbs, grasses and shrubs, prairies have always provided critical […]

Habitat Restoration and Ecological Education Combat the Enemy We Know

By Jessica Celis April 2020 In this time of combating an insidious, novel threat like the coronavirus, it is nice to get outside and combat a more typical ecological threat: weeds. Last week, staff from IAE’s Ecological Education Program (EE) joined Habitat Restoration Program (HR) folks up at Horse Rock Ridge, a 378-acre mid-elevation meadow […]

Nursery supports the restoration cause

Peter Moore April 2020 Getting plants in the ground and seeing them thrive – this is a rewarding part of being a restoration ecologist at the Institute for Applied Ecology (IAE). Each year, IAE plants thousands of native plants at restoration sites throughout Oregon and New Mexico. For example, see the December blog How does […]

The Violet Restoration Hydra

By Rolando Beorchia January 2020 Restoration work at IAE is often like a multi-headed hydra (we’re talking the cute cousin to anemones type of hydra, not the scary monster that Hercules killed). ­­­­­Each project has multiple “arms,” including property owners, staff, funders and sometimes researchers, who all have to come together to make the magic […]

How does IAE get all of those plants in the ground?

By Andy Neill December 2019 Fall is planting season, which means IAE’s restoration ecologists are in the midst of their busiest time of the year. Most of the restoration work that takes place the rest of the year is in preparation for planting and seeding each fall. This year, nearly 116,000 plants were planted and […]

Restoring prairies: making a home for butterflies takes time!

By Ian Silvernail October 2019 Prairie habitat once existed extensively along the Oregon coast, most commonly occurring on stabilized dunes, headlands, salt-spray meadows, and on some coastal, montane peaks. Today, the few remaining coastal prairies are significantly degraded, and the loss of this habitat has resulted in a significant reduction in many of the animal […]

How IAE harvests native plants

By Michel Wiman October 2019 The United Nations General Assembly recently declared 2021-2030 the Decade on Ecosystem Restoration, to “massively scale up the restoration of degraded and destroyed ecosystems as a proven measure to fight the climate crisis and enhance food security, water supply and biodiversity.” For the U.N. to recognize the importance of restoration […]

Taylor’s checkerspot – the fair weather butterfly

By Andy Neill May 2019 Location: Benton County (Site names and locations excluded to protect sensitive species and habitats) Many of you are probably familiar with the Fender’s blue butterfly (Icaricia icarioides fenderi), sometimes used as the poster child of prairie restoration in Oregon and rightfully so. It is likely that some of you have […]

Fender’s blue or silvery blue butterfly? And other entomological adventures

By Jessica Celis April 2019 IAE’s restoration ecologists tend to focus on plant communities. But this year, three of HR’s five restoration ecologists will shift their search image from plants to butterflies as they participate in the annual range-wide survey for Fender’s blue butterfly, which is funded each year by the US Fish and Wildlife […]

Four Reasons to Love Prairies

By Anna Ramthun February 2019 We talk a lot about prairie restoration at IAE. But why do we care about prairies? Why should you care about them?  Although prairies don’t provide the obvious resources that forests do (no trees), and they do not provide the splashy benefits of wetlands (requiring folks to mitigate their losses), […]

Season’s Plantings

by Anna Ramthun December 2018 As the planting season and the year draw to end, we are feeling incredibly grateful for our volunteer base! With their help, the Habitat Restoration Program was able to plant 34,460 plugs, bulbs, trees, shrubs, and bare-root native plants this year. Of these, 4,885 were plugs of threatened and endangered […]

First Foods Celebration at Champoeg State Park

By Andy Neill October 2018 On Saturday October 13th, IAE staff took part in a cultural event at Champoeg State Heritage Area and State Park near Wilsonville, Oregon, that was the culmination of the efforts with our partners at Confederated Tribes of the Grand Ronde (CTGR) and Oregon Parks and Recreation Department (OPRD). The event […]

Gaining good ground at OSU Vegetable Farm

By Emily Wittkop, November 2018 IAE currently manages 66 restoration sites in Oregon and partners with agencies such as the US Fish and Wildlife Service and the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) for plug and seed production. In order to produce seed for restoration, IAE has expanded our farm program to the Oregon State University […]

The Progress and the Peavine

by Anna Ramthun September 2018 The thinleaved peavine (Lathyrus holochlorus) is a climbing perennial forb, or non-grass, prairie wildflower. Native to Oregon and Washington, it depends on transitional habitats, like edges of prairie and oak savanna, fence rows, and roadsides, and woodland clearings. Appropriate habitat areas have declined drastically, as prairie and oak savanna ecosystems […]