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How Disturbance Impacts Wildlife

By Lauri Turner, Forest Wildlife Program Manager, Deschutes National Forest, Supervisor's Office


Mule Deer On The Move

It's spring, and mule deer and moving across our roads and highways, through our neighborhoods and yards.



How deer digest food and why not to feed them

Deer Digestion: How it works and why feeding deer could lead to their death By Alysia Wolf, Wildlife Biologist All deer species are herbivores that, depending on their range and the season, will forage on native shrubs, grasses, twigs, leaves, and berries. Basically, plant parts. These plant parts are made up of cellulose, a molecule […]


Migration is key to mule deer survival

Migration between the upper elevations of summer ranges and the lower elevations of winter ranges is essential for mule deer survival. This graphic shows how migration occurs from the eastern Cascades in Central Oregon to the Fort Rock and John Day areas.  Barriers disrupt this migration. Unless there is community support, populations of mule deer […]

Mule deer on winter range

Oregonians are making a Difference

Two important bills were recently passed by the Oregon State Legislature. House Bill 2829 establishes  the Oregon Conservation and Recreation Fund (separate from the General Fund) to support the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW) to meet growing needs for research and conservation management to preserve sustainable wildlife populations for all Oregonians. House Bill […]

Help Oregon Watch Out for Wildlife

As development and recreation grow in Central Oregon, migratory wildlife like Mule deer are losing out. Their habitat is being fragmented and their ability to move between summer and winter ranges is impeded by growing traffic volume, unregulated recreation 24/7 in the Deschutes National Forest and development of corridors and winter range needed for their […]

Deer on the Move, Driving Safely

 Deer are designed to move across the landscape to find forage, shelter and genetic diversity. This is more difficult in summer months when there are thousands of vehicles traveling on Highway 97.  In Deschutes county, this is an historic migratory corridor. Deer cross the highway and feeder roads to reach summer range in the Cascades […]

Deer Crossing the Deschutes River

Deer need water, and they need a buffer between them and human disturbance. When a deer sights a human, it stresses at 200 meters and flees. This can cause many deer to permanently abandon much needed usable habitat.  As wildlife habitat continues to degrade and fragment due to human disturbance, deer are having difficulty surviving.  The […]


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What are your priorities?

Our priorities for 2019 involve continuing to build a diverse, large coalition focused on education on the need for wildlife crossings. Following the successful example of Washington State, we are circulating a petition to have wildlife connectivity and ecology be a priority in all transportation construction projects, beginning in the hot spot areas on Highway 97 and associated feeder highways and roads in Deschutes County.

We will continue to research and summarize updated information to the public and to county and city agencies who make decisions that affect habitat fragmentation and connectivity. Often these decisions are made without benefit of updated data on wildlife habitat fragmentation.

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