Oregon FNAWS
News - Thistle Cut
Hands on Projects Report
Third Annual Thistle Cut On Lower Deschutes
Thistle Cut Crew A group of 12 hardy soles performed Scotch Thistle eradication on the Lower Deschutes the weekend of June 9 and 10. This is the third year in a row that OR-FNAWS has participated in this hands-on project. The host/sponsor of the project was again Keith Kohl who is the District Wildlife Biologist for the Mid-Columbia District of ODF&W. Keith, with assistance from ODF&W employees Jeremy Thompson and Stephanie Jenkins again did a fine job of hosting the event and providing an excellent camp site dinner on Saturday night.
Two rubber rafts and a drift boat manned by 8 folks put in the Deschutes at Macks Canyon and on Saturday morning and headed downstream chopping thistles as they went. The other four individuals ferried vehicles to the takeout point and brought in gear and set up camp at the halfway point. The thistle cutting is a habitat enhancement for Big Horn Sheep as well as other wild life. The trip has an added benefit as there was opportunity to view many Big Horn Sheep rams, ewes and lambs.
About halfway between Macks Canyon and the mouth of the Deschutes, a camp was set up near the old Harris homestead. It was a cool and wet day and with the boaters coming in wet from the rapids, the camp site and excellent BBQ meal was a welcome respite. On Sunday morning, Keith took the group up river for some more Big Horn Sheep viewing and he did not disappoint the crew as many were sighted. After the viewing, the boats and crew went on down the river to the mouth at the Columbia, cutting thistles as they went.
Keith had warned that it "had been a good year for the thistles" and the participants confirmed that it was. Many shovels were dulled and blisters were formed. It was recognized that it would take many days to get them all.
The participants besides Keith, Jeremy and Stephanie included George Houston, Brian Hoge, Larry Jacobs, Mike Town, June McAdams, Brent Tannock, Tom Peterson, Dave Geelan and Robert Welsh.
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