Rare orchid fading fast, and climate change may be part of the problem

About half of the known populations are likely extinct in the western US October 17, 2019 A rare orchid is losing ground in the western United States.  Researchers from the Institute for Applied Ecology, a nonprofit organization that conducts habitat restoration and ecological research, partnered with government agencies to revisit previously reported populations of the […]

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 […]

Federally threatened bird successfully hatched

By Meghan Dugan, Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife October 1, 2019 Habitat created just for streaked horned larks on Herbert Farm and Natural Area (HFNA) successfully produced its first juvenile larks. Three eggs were laid in early June with chicks hatching in mid-July. Biologists banded the chicks which fledged their nest successfully, a significant […]

Every early-career scientist needs this, and our Internship Program provides it

By Michel Wiman August 2019 ‘Experience required.’ Look through any science or land management job board and these words will be there, usually in the Minimum Qualifications section. The experience required for most permanent land management and ecology positions often includes field techniques and real-life data collection. So what’s a recent graduate to do for […]

Weed warriors unite for the 8th annual Invasive Species Cook-off

By Michel Wiman, photos by Owen Dell August 2019 Nonnative plant infestations are a huge struggle for land managers and community members alike. We spend hours pulling weeds from our gardens, and time and resources mowing them from our farms, roadsides, and natural areas. Natural resource professionals often watch as their control efforts are overwhelmed […]

New Mapping Reveals Lost West Coast Estuary Habitat – and potential for restoration

Correigh Greene, NOAA Fisheries August 2019 An unprecedented survey has revealed the loss of about 85 percent of historical tidal wetlands in California, Oregon, and Washington. The report, published today in PLOS ONE, also highlights forgotten estuary acreage that might now be targeted for restoration. Where West Coast rivers reach the sea, estuaries serve as […]

Comparing Dobermans to Chihuahuas: Great Basin plants are adapted to local conditions

Owen Baughman, The Nature Conservancy of Oregon; Elizabeth Leger, University of Nevada, Reno; and Tom Kaye, Institute for Applied Ecology A new study published in the most recent issue of the journal Ecology and Evolution shows that plant species native to the Great Basin are generally adapted to local conditions, a fact that could be a key […]

Better than therapy? Watching Willamette Valley pollinators

By David Cappaert, Willamette Valley Pollinator Technician June 2019 Pollination is an essential part of the mating scheme for plants. A simple example is in the case of apples: honeybees visit flowers which then produce apples. It is more complex (and interesting) in the case of native prairie plants. Our Prairie Pollinator project is a […]

“Who knows the anther?” and other ecological teaching techniques

by Tyler Knapp July 2019 Many people don’t realize that IAE has a Southwest Office in Santa Fe, New Mexico, in addition to the main office in Corvallis, Oregon. For the past three years, IAE Southwest has offered a week-long summer conservation and botany training program for teens called Forest Bound. This program spans several […]

Who wins when a frog meets a bombardier beetle? And other Bioblitz discoveries

By Deborah Clark, IAE Board of Directors  June 2019 Before I tell the story of the frog and the bombardier beetle, I want to share my mini-adventure at the 2019 Corvallis BioBlitz. What is a BioBlitz, you might ask? It is a celebration of biodiversity — a fun, family-friendly challenge to find and record as […]

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 […]

Welcome to Table Rocks, may I take your order?

By Cia Crowe and Eva Brod June 2019 Have you ever been so hungry that nearly everything around you reminds you of food? Well, that is exactly what happened to our crew while on top of Upper and Lower Table Rocks near Medford, Oregon this April. During our daily hikes up the steep switchbacks, throughout […]

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 […]