2011 Expand WBP Inventory, Monitoring, Genetic Conservation & Restoration Work in R6

Project: Expand Whitebark Pine Inventory, Monitoring, Genetic Conservation, And Restoration Work in Region 6

Agency/Forest or Park/District:Washington Dept. of Natural Resources (DNR),

Young whitebark stand

Young whitebark stand

Yakima Nation, Colville Confederated Tribes, Southern Central British Columbia,

Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest

Project coordinator: Therese Ohlson

Contact

Therese Ohlson. Methow Valley RD, 24 West Chewuch Rd, Winthrop WA 98862.  Phone: 509-996-4091. thohlson@fs.fed.us

Connie Mehmel. Forest Entomologist. Wenatchee Service Center Oka-Wen NF, 1133 North Western Ave, Wenatchee WA 98801. Phone: 509-664-9213 or 509-322-0181.  cmehmel@fs.fed.us

Cooperators

Dave Wilderman, DNR Plant Ecologist

Phil Rigdon, Deputy Director, Department of Natural Resources, Yakima Nation

Phil Wapato, Colville Confederated Tribes, Omak-Nespelem Forestry

Jodie Krakowski, BC Ministry of Forest Research Branch, Cowichan Lake Research Station.

Source of funding /amount

FHP: $11,000

Supplemental funding: $11,750 in-kind contributions from BIA and Forest Health Protection

Dates of restoration efforts: 

Chopaka Mt.:

  • 2011 — 3 plots installed.

Darland Mt.:

  • 2007 & 2009 — cone collections from 19 trees
  • All 2007 seed sent to BR testing.
  • All 2009 seed sent to BR testing and gene conservation.
  • 2009 — 4 plots installed

Moses Mt.:

  • 2010 — 3 plots installed.
  • 2011 – cone collection from 19 trees.

Objectives

Develop partnerships with Washington Dept. of Natural Resources (DNR), Southern Central British Columbia Ministry of Forest Research, Yakima Nation and Colville Confederated Tribes to expand the restoration, monitoring, and gene conservation efforts. Implement restoration and conservation strategies that will benefit the species across its range, irrespective of political boundaries.

Acres/ha treated

1 acre (10 permanent plots)

Methods

During 2009-2010 year the Washington DNR, Yakima Nation, and Colville Confederated

Multi-storied WBP stand

Multi-storied WBP stand

Tribes were contacted and are interested in joining in our conservation and restoration efforts. Copies of the Whitebark Pine Restoration Strategy for the Pacific NW Region 2009-2013 (Aubry et al 2008), and the Land Managers Guide to Whitebark Pine Restoration 2009-2013 (Shoal et al 2008) along with some other supporting literature were mailed. Permanent plot installation protocols, currently in use by the Region, were also included in the information packet for agency review.

All these cooperators are interested in allowing seed collection, as well as permanent plot installation for long-term monitoring. Their staff will partner with FS to conduct stand inventory, install permanent plots, and help develop/implement stand management guidelines to maintain WBP. They are offering access to lands they manage in exchange for the FS to take the lead in providing the management guidance, monitoring protocols, data management, and cone collections efforts. These folks will help FS personnel to complete any field work.

To the north in BC, the BC Ministry of Forest Research is interested in working with the FS to do genetic research associated with WBP in close proximity to the border. There is a mutual interest to look at genetics, seed transfer and influences of climate change on long-term sustainability of WBP along our shared border.  Initial contacts have been made, but further establishment of common goals and expectations need to be explored.  Once established, a Memorandum of Understanding will be drafted outlining goals, objectives, and individual responsibilities associated with the work.

The following sites have been identified for potential WBP restoration:

Chopaka Mt., Washington DNR

Washington DNR administers Chopaka Mt.  This site is a natural extension of seed zone 2E to the east and borders British Columbia.  Chopaka Mt. is a designated Natural Preserve, which is a similar designation to the Federal Wilderness or Research Natural Area designations.  All activities need to be permitted through the DNR office. When funds are secured to help further build this partnership, the permitting process will begin.

Darland Mt., Washington DNR

The DNR also administers land adjacent to FS on Darland Mt., in seed zone 4.  On the FS administered portion of Darland Mt. seed collections have been made.  Some of the seed has been included in blister rust resistance screening at Dorena.  Three permanent plots have been installed. By collaboratively managing Darland Mt., this area becomes the largest contiguous stand of WBP known to occur in seed zone 4.

Moses Mt., Colville Confederated Tribes

The Colville Confederated Tribes manage approximately 90 acres of WBP habitat on the summit of Moses Mt.  It is the highest point on the reservation and the only stand of WBP on the reservation.  The area is a natural extension to the south of seed zone 3 which supports only small isolated pockets of WBP.  Any additional stands of WPB that can contribute to the genetic diversity within this seed zone will greatly contribute to maintaining viable genetic material for conservation and restoration.  In 2010, condition surveys were conducted and one permanent plot was installed.

Mt. Adams

The Yakima Nation has stands of WBP on the side of Mt. Adams and to the north. Partnering with the Yakima Nation will fill a geographic void between conservation areas 404 and 405. Combined with the DNR lands in seed zone 4, it will be possible to sample the genetic variability in WBP the entire length of the seed zone from north to south and around the entire summit of Mt. Adams.

Planting? If so, source of seedlings? Resistance?

No

Outcome

38 trees caged and collected.

Monitoring since completion of the project

            Dates:   No follow up monitoring since initial plot installation

            Plans for future monitoring?   Remeasure permanent plots in five years.

Will outcome meet goals?

Yes

Future actions/follow up?

  • Remeasure permanent plots.
  • Continue contacts with Yakama Nation regarding plot installation and cone collection at Mt. Adams.
  • At Darland Mt., continue cone collections for restoration needs and expand collections to include Divide Ridge if possible.
  • Post-fire planting at Darland Mt.
  • Thin WBP at Moses Mt.

Miscellaneous comments

Chopaka Mt.:

Stands that were visited in 2011 are young and not cone-bearing.  Additional inventory of Hurley Peak, and Chopaka Summit is needed to complete the WBP mapping in the area and determine if any areas have mature cone-bearing stands.  Revisit permanent plots in 2016.

Darland Mt.:

Continue cone collections for restoration needs and expand collections to include Divide Ridge if possible.  Access to Divide is a bit more difficult but survey notes indicate it would be worth inclusion.  In 2013 it was determined Darland Mt should be considered for post-fire restoration planting.   Develop partnership w/ DNR for work in the Darland Mt area.

Moses Mt.:

A 2010 site survey indicated a small stand of very old WBP on the summit.  Three plots were installed and one cone collection resulted.   Much of the WBP would benefit from thinning. The Tribes are interested in partnership funding.

Mt. Adams:

No work has been done since initial contacts were made.