Watershed Restoration

The 95,000-acre Cedar River Municipal Watershed is set aside as an ecological reserve. While approximately 14,000 acres of the watershed are considered old-growth, much of the watershed was used for commercial timber harvest. The main objective of watershed restoration under the HCP is to accelerate the development of old-growth forest conditions. Under the ecosystem-based HCP, watershed restoration is designed to improve streamside vegetation, reduce the impact of road crossings, and improve forest habitat diversity in the former "tree farms." This work can transition a dark, homogenous forest towards one with light penetrating to the forest floor, improving growth and diversity. This type of forest provides habitat for more at-risk species. Greater forest complexity improves habitat types available for forest-dependent species such as the northern-spotted owl and marbled murrelet, and improves forest resiliency for pests and diseases.