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Pickett West Units Withdrawn, New Timber Sale Proposed by BLM

Unit 35-11 in the Pickett West Timber Sale was withdrawn due to impacts to the red tree vole. The unit was identified by on-the-ground monitoring conducted by Klamath Forest Alliance, Applegate Neighborhood Network & the Deer Creek Association.

The Grants Pass BLM has withdrawn portions of the Pickett West Timber Sale!

A coalition of local environmental organizations, including Klamath Forest Alliance, Applegate Neighborhood Network and the Deer Creek Association joined forces this past year to conduct extensive on-the-ground field monitoring in units throughout the massive Pickett West Timber Sale. What we found in the Deer Creek watershed outside Selma, Oregon was troubling. We found many old-growth forests proposed for heavy industrial logging. Many of these forests provide important habitat for the Northern spotted owl and its prey source, the red tree vole. 

The red tree vole lives high in the canopy of old-growth Douglas-fir trees. The species is a habitat specialist, requiring old-growth Douglas-fir trees and complex forest habitat for nesting, foraging and every other aspect of its survival. These same old-growth forest conditions are important for the red tree vole’s main predator, the Northern spotted owl. They also provide habitat for the Pacific fisher, thermal cover for local ungulates, and habitat for innumerable species of wildlife. 

Unit 27-14 was withdrawn due to impacts to the red tree vole, a species dependent on old-growth Douglas-fir trees.

Due to historic logging impacts, low-elevation ancient forests are rare. Low-elevation ancient forests are very important for habitat connectivity. The Pickett West Timber Sale was targeting many of the last old-growth habitats in the Deer Creek watershed for heavy industrial logging, and many people in the nearby community were outraged.

Our monitoring efforts identified many “high priority red tree vole sites” located within proposed logging units. We also found that in numerous units, Northern spotted owl habitat determinations were inappropriately designated. Our findings were turned over to U.S. Fish & Wildlife, who then requested that the BLM review these units to ensure accurate habitat determinations were made for Endangered Species Act (ESA) consultation. 

Unit 26-2 was withdrawn and will not be logged in the Clean Slate Project.

Recently, the Grants Pass BLM has withdrawn portions of the Pickett West Timber Sale in the Deer Creek watershed due to impacts to “high priority red tree vole” sites. Our monitoring efforts, combined with red tree vole survey results, appear to have significantly altered the
sale, with many old-growth units being withdrawn due to impacts to the red tree vole. 

In the Pickett West Timber Sale, BLM originally identified 2,070 acres for treatment in the
Selma area. They have now initiated scoping on a new timber sale in the Selma
area called the Clean Slate Forest Management Project. They have identified 486 acres within the same planning area as Pickett West. This means 1,584 acres have been withdrawn due to citizen and community activism!

Unit 3-11 from the former Pickett West Timber Sale is old-growth forest proposed for logging in the Clean Slate Forest Management Project. The unit must be canceled.

Unfortunately, the BLM is still proposing heavy industrial logging in old, fire resistant stands, riparian reserve logging and in a few units of significant concern. In particular, five units we identified in our monitoring efforts have been included in the Clean Slate Forest Management Project. These units were identified in the Pickett West Forest Management Project as: 3-9, 3-10, 3-11, 21-12, and 22-5. These units contain old-growth characteristics and should not be logged. For more information on these particular units please follow these links:
Units 3-9, 3-10 & 3-11 
Units 21-12 & 22-5 

The Clean Slate Forest Management Project includes numerous units we have yet to monitor and document. We hope to monitor these units throughout the winter in preparation for an upcoming Environmental Assessment of the Clean Slate Forest Management Project. Our goal is to protect as much old forest habitat as we possibly can and advocate for science and conservation-based management on our public lands. If you would like to support our continued on-the-ground monitoring efforts, please consider making a donation to Klamath Forest Alliance (KFA) and make a note that funds will support the Clean Slate Monitoring Project. To make a donation follow this link. Donate to KFA.

Unit 21-12 of the former Pickett West Timber Sale is being proposed for logging in the Clean Slate Forest Management Project. The unit must be canceled.



Please consider commenting on the Clean Slate Timber Sale. The comment period ends December 8, 2017. All comments can be sent via email to ffisher@blm.gov


Clean Slate Forest Management Project Comment Guide
  • Cancel units 3-9, 3-10, 3-11, 21-12 and 22-5 from the former Pickett West Forest Management Project. These old forests do not need logging, fuel reduction or “forest restoration” treatments.
  • Drop all riparian reserve logging units.
  • Maintain all Northern spotted owl habitat designation and a minimum of 60% canopy cover. 
  • Build no new roads.
  • Do not log old forest stands over 120 years old.
  • Consider an Alternative for NEPA analysis developed by local Selma area residents and foresters. This Action Alternative would treat stands under 120 years old based on the Natural Selection Alternative developed by Orville Camp and the Deer Creek Association.
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