Controversy erupts over Oregon State University’s plan to cut older trees at its McDonald research forest. But are they old growth?

By Hans Boyle
Corvallis Gazette-Times in Yachats News
June 27, 2024
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

CORVALLIS — Some Corvallis residents are sounding alarm bells over a planned timber harvest in the heart of the McDonald-Dunn Forest. That operation, known as the Woodpecker Harvest, which encompasses over 60 acres of trees around Cronemiller Lake near a popular hiking trail, was slated to begin Monday. But so far no trees have been felled, according to Oregon State University officials at the College of Forestry, including the college’s dean, Tom DeLuca. That’s because the college has tapped an ecologist and silviculturist from within the College of Forestry to conduct a review of the planned harvest site, DeLuca said, to ensure the operation aligns with the forest’s current management plan. The move is intended to respond to concerns expressed by some community members, DeLuca added, though he emphasized the operation was above-board. …According to DeLuca, tree stands within the planned Woodpecker Harvest are not considered old-growth.

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