Friends of Tryon Creek Explore · Learn · Protect 2015-09-04T19:08:20Z http://www.tryonfriends.org/feed/atom/ Jeffrey Gray <![CDATA[Stumpfest!]]> http://www.tryonfriends.org/?p=10678 2015-09-04T19:08:20Z 2015-09-04T19:08:20Z IMG_6839

Sunday, Sep 6, 2015
12:00 pm – 3:00 pm

Join the crew at Tryon as we celebrate the history of Tryon Creek State Natural Area and the importance of preserving the historic stumps in our forest. Old time carnival games, logging demos, a self-guided hike, and craft table await you as get stumpy with it at Tryon this Labor Day Weekend.

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Jeffrey Gray <![CDATA[Forest Fungi: Mycological Marvels of Tryon Creek State Natural Area]]> http://www.tryonfriends.org/?p=10648 2015-09-03T19:58:27Z 2015-09-03T19:58:27Z

Park Ranger and Mushroom Enthusiast Dane Osis from Fort Stevens State Park will visit Tryon Creek to share his knowledge of mushroom identification and ecology. This program will provide an introduction to the important ecological role that fungi fill as well as helpful tricks and tips for identifying Pacific Northwest mushrooms. We'll then hit the trail to discover what species live in Tryon Creek State Natural Area.

This event is for ages 10 and older

October 27th, 2015 1:30 PM   through   3:30 PM

Help spread the word

Please help us and let your friends, colleagues and followers know about our page: Forest Fungi: Mycological Marvels of Tryon Creek State Natural Area


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Jeffrey Gray <![CDATA[Special Stewardship Events: Tryon Creek Ravine Restoration Project]]> http://www.tryonfriends.org/?p=10615 2015-08-24T19:01:41Z 2015-08-10T22:50:37Z Picture24

 

Saturdays, September 5th, September 19th, October 10th

9:00 am –  1:00 pm

 

Join the Friends of Tryon Creek for a series of special Stewardship Saturday events!  In addition to our weekly ivy pull, we will celebrate with a catered lunch, fun giveaways from Merrell, and a raffle on three Saturdays: September 5th, September 19th, and October 10th from 9:00am-1:00pm.  These events are funded through a grant from the National Environmental Education Foundation.

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Please contact Lizzy Miskell at Lizzy@tryonfriends.org 

or 503-636-4398 if you have any questions.

Registration required: Click here to register!

Why does this work matter?

Non-native English ivy takes over the forest floor, replacing native plants with a monoculture. By eradicating ivy, we are restoring the forest’s biodiversity, which improves soil quality and supports abundant food sources for wildlife. We’ve cleared ivy from 250 acres of the 650-acre park. Together, our collective work is restoring Tryon Creek State Natural Area for both wildlife and visitors—present and future!

General Information

  • Gloves will be provided, but please bring a water bottle.
  • Be prepared to be off trail and to get dirty, and hike at least 15 minutes to the work site.
  • Be sure to wear sturdy shoes, long sleeves and long pants.
  • Parking is limited so carpooling is recommended. All minors under 16 must be accompanied by an adult.
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Jeffrey Gray <![CDATA[Tryon Creek State Park Culvert Assessment Project]]> http://www.tryonfriends.org/?p=10546 2015-08-06T19:19:35Z 2015-08-06T19:06:31Z Tryon Creek State Park Culvert Assessment Project

Portland State University Senior Capstone Project

What are culverts and the problems associated with them?

Culverts are tunnels that carry water from streams or other sources under roads and pathways. Due the notoriously wet climate of the Pacific Northwest and the natural landslide area around Tryon Creek, the amount of water being channeled through the park has caused some major erosion issues. During storms a large amount of water is collected in the surrounding neighborhoods and conveyed through culverts, ultimately making its way into the creek bed. The water cuts away the soil causing erosion known as undercutting. This can ultimately lead to trails collapsing or landslides that contaminate the creek.

2Culvert - 9Why are culvert assessments important?

When large amounts of soil are dumped into the creek it makes it very difficult for organisms in the creek to survive. Historically, Tryon Creek was an active salmon spawning stream. Due in part to the massive erosion depositing soil in the creek salmon have been unable to return. One of the ultimate goals of this project is to create and maintain a healthy ecosystem for salmon to spawn.

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The safety of the walkways and trails is a top priority to Tryon Creek Natural Area. If there is a significant amount of undercutting to the point that trails collapse, someone could get seriously injured. When this does happen, it is very costly for the park to rectify. New trails have to be made to defer the public from the dangerous area, and the existing trails need to be repaired ­ creating both an ecological and financial problem.

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How can I get involved?

Be on the lookout for culverts around the park. If you see any signs that a culvert may be compromised, such as steep ravines that lack vegetation or pooling water at the entrance to or exit of the culvert, alert a Tryon Creek staff member.

To help volunteer with the Friends of Tryon Creek and participate in culvert assessments within the park contact Lizzy Miskell (Lizzy@tryonfriends.org). The Friends of Tryon Creek will provide training and organize small groups of volunteers to collect data and prioritize the problematic culverts. The data you collect will be used to help inform the staff at Tryon Creek State Park which culverts need attention and which are in good condition.

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Other ways to help reduce water run­off at home

  1. Wash your car at a commercial car wash instead of on the street or in your driveway. If you do wash your car at home wash it on a lawn.
  2. Keep a garden with native shrubs and vegetation. These plants are better at absorbing water than exotic lawns, and native plants help create a habitat for wildlife!
  3. Consider creating a rain garden. For information on what a rain garden is and how to make one go to https://www.portlandoregon.gov/bes/article/188636
  4. Plant trees and preserve existing ones. The immense root system of trees is better than anything else at absorbing and storing water.
  5. Collect rainwater from your downspout during the rainy season and use it to water your plants during droughts.
  6. Line impermeable surfaces with gravel trenches. These slow water run­off and allow it time to seep into the ground.
  7. Reduce the amount of area taken up by impermeable surfaces on your property, such as patios, driveways and rooftops. Instead replace or cover these areas with vegetation, or replace concrete with pavers.
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Jeffrey Gray <![CDATA[Stream Habitat Quality Assessment]]> http://www.tryonfriends.org/?p=10522 2015-08-05T23:35:56Z 2015-08-05T22:42:39Z Stream Habitat Quality Assessment

Portland State University Senior Capstone Project

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We are a group of seven students from Portland State University taking the “Communicating Sustainability Through the Forest” senior capstone. For our project we surveyed creeks within Tryon Creek State Park in order to record the stream habitat qualities. Each summer different students will take part in the capstone and follow up on the work we have done this summer. Ultimately this will be vital information about the overall health of the Tryon Creek Watershed, especially concerning the quality of habitat for species of salmon that use Tryon Creek to spawn.

Why our project is important.

Measuring the overall health of the stream is important to record over time in order to see how the surrounding environments (neighborhoods, city projects, construction, etc.) are affecting the health and quality of stream and riparian habitats. Factors such as runoff pollution, physical interferences, culverts, sewage lines, ect., can have dramatic impacts on the stream’s health. Surrounding urban environments can alter stream beds and bottoms, decrease oxygen levels, cause flash floods and change the flow of the stream.

Ultimately all of this effects the plant and animal life that depends on this habitat. These changes are recorded by the work done in our surveys and other work by the Tryon Creek Water Council. The stream’s health affects not only its inhabitants, but people’s ability to use and enjoy the park safely. Ultimately it is T.C.W.C.’s goal to get Tryon creek healthy enough to support healthy salmon populations once again.

What we assessed.

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We surveyed four different 150 meter sections of Tryon Creek, Nettle Creek, and Arnold Creek

  • Stream habitat surveys can help the Friends of Tryon Creek plan projects to improve habitat, such as tree planting, culvert removal, creation of slow-moving areas by placing logs in the creek or altering flow by reshaping the channel, or stabilizing banks to prevent erosion.
  • These assessments are also important tools to determine the general health of a stream, and relate to salmon habitat as described below.

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We looked for amounts of different sized-gravel and fine sediment, as well as woody debris on the stream bottom.

  • Large logs create pools where young salmon live, and adults returning to spawn can rest on their journey upriver.
  • Salmon need gravel for spawning: pea sized to melon sized, depending on species.
  • Sediment embeds gravel, eliminating spawning areas by preventing clean water and oxygen from reaching eggs laid in gravel redds. If silt invades gravel nests, where eggs or alevin develop before emerging into the stream as fry, they can be smothered and die.
  • Young salmon shelter in cobble and boulders to avoid predators and extremely cold temperature. Prey species also live in areas where the water penetrates the gravel beds. When silt embeds these areas, salmon lose shelter and food.

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We surveyed tree canopy cover and assessed the understory, and described the legacy tree for each section of stream.

  • Forests provide shade, drop organic material into the stream for salmon prey insects to feed on, and fallen logs to create pools
  • Where the canopy opens up, sunlight allows algae to grow, which feeds different prey species

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We noted invasive plant species growing in or around the stream.

  • Invasive plants can successfully eliminate native species, out competing for resources such as nutrients and sunlight as well as eliminating understory.
  • Some species that grow in, or at the edge of the water produce thick, matted roots that eliminate places for salmon to feed and shelter.

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We measured depth of the stream at different points, mid-channel, near the banks, and at points in between. We also measured wetted stream width and bank-full width, and made note of the flow types: pool, riffle, or glide.

  • Altering flow with culverts or by removing meanders (bends) and beaver dams eliminates slow areas where young salmon live and feed
  • Stream restoration activities to slow water flow can improve salmon survival

Get Involved?

You can help improve the chances of salmon returning to thrive in Tryon Creek.

Parks and natural areas cover only about 21% of the total watershed, family housing dominates most of the rest.

Point sources of pollution in the creek include two major upper-watershed storm water outfalls draining 368 acres of the upper watershed and contributing about half of the creek’s total suspended solids.

  • With the dangers posed to watershed health from urban runoff, neighborhoods can help to alleviate some of the problems through at home solutions and by pressing the city to add green streets as a replacement to impervious sidewalks.
  • Green street solutions include sidewalk planters, adding more trees, or bioswales.
    • Bioswales are especially good at slowing the flow of water but also help remove pollutants within the runoff through plant uptake.
    • Green streets also add a much more pleasant view over the concrete jungles.

Homeowners can help on their own properties as well.

  • Homeowners can disconnect their downspouts by installing rain barrels, which not only prevent water runoff from gutters instantly reaching streams but can also save money by eliminating the need for outdoor hoses.
  • Solid concrete driveways and patios can be replaced with more permeable solutions, such as pavers.
  • Invasive species also grow on private property. Homeowners can help by controlling invasive weeds, or by not planting invasive species in yards and gardens.

We can work together to improve the health of Tryon Creek!

Sources:

http://www.psmfc.org/habitat/sshabtat.html

http://www.krisweb.com/stream/sediment.htm

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Jeffrey Gray <![CDATA[Tryon Creek Watershed Restoration Sites]]> http://www.tryonfriends.org/?p=10475 2015-08-05T23:36:33Z 2015-08-05T22:19:37Z Evaluation of Restoration Efforts

in the Tryon Creek Watershed

Portland State University Senior Capstone Project

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Restoration work taking place this Summer

A group of Portland State University students have spent the last two months visiting previous restoration sites in the Tryon Creek Watershed. The students visited each site and took account of the amount of native versus invasive species of current plants, and the general success rates of past re-plantings. The focus was to help the Tryon Creek Watershed Council be aware of which sites are still in need of eradication of invasive plant species that are preventing native species from thriving.

What’s the big deal about invasives?

Invasive species are a threat to biodiversity and water quality.

  • Non-natives can spread from the confines of a private yard or garden on shoes, in the wind, or by animals.
  • When they enter a foreign ecosystem, they compete with the existing native species for resources. Invasive species are often more adaptable than native species, and grow rampantly without animal predators in the area that are unable to digest the introduced plant.
  • The result is that the invasives eventually become one of the main species in the ecosystem, decreasing biodiversity
  • As a result, this promotes soil erosion because lack of plants suited to hold back water banks and slow water absorption leads to more sediment in the waters. The warmer, cloudier water makes it very difficult fish to spawn or for bacteria to maintain a balanced water quality
  • Without a broad range of different species of plants, animals, insects, etc. living in an ecosystem, the entire ecosystem can collapse.

Not all non-natives are created equal
The non-native plants that compete for resources such as sunlight and water are the ones that pose a threat to beneficial native species. The following are some common invasive species the Portland State University students documented. Some have easily mistakable native “look alikes,” which are also listed, along with the main ways to differentiate between the native and invasive types:

Invasive: Holly- this is an invasive species that is identified by its glossy leaves which protrude along the stem alternatively. This plant produces bright red berries.

Invasive: Holly – This is an invasive species that is identified by its glossy leaves which protrude along the stem alternatively. This plant produces bright red berries.

Oregon-Grape

Native: Oregon Grape – Unlike its invasive counterpart, its leaves are less glossy and the leaves on either side of the stem are parallel to one another, almost in pairs. The berries it produces are a dark blueish purple.

Invasive: Himalayan Blackberry- this species of berry has thick, branch-like stems with strong thorns. The leaves come off the stem in groups of five.

Invasive: Himalayan Blackberry – This species of berry has thick, branch-like stems with strong thorns. The leaves come off the stem in groups of five.

Native: Oregon Blackberry- this native species of blackberry has more vine-like stems, and the leaves are in groups of three. Additionally, the plant looks less malicious as there are less thorns and the stem is more flexible compared to its invasive counterpart. There is also a white coating along the stem in this species.

Native: Oregon Blackberry – This native species of blackberry has more vine-like stems, and the leaves are in groups of three. Additionally, the plant looks less malicious as there are less thorns and the stem is more flexible compared to its invasive counterpart. There is also a white coating along the stem in this species.

Other invasives are much more obvious to identify as they possess characteristics unlike other plant-life in the area such as:

Hawthorn - Is an invasive plant that grows into a tree. It eventually has had white buds that bloom into small flowers.

Hawthorn – Is an invasive plant that grows into a tree. It eventually has had white buds that bloom into small flowers.

English Ivy - Is a green vine that can be found blanketing ground cover, engulfing shrubs and can also take over trees of any size. It can be identified by its dark, green waxy leaves with three to five points from a heart-shaped base.

English Ivy – Is a green vine that can be found blanketing ground cover, engulfing shrubs and can also take over trees of any size. It can be identified by its dark, green waxy leaves with three to five points from a heart-shaped base.

Stinky Bob/Herb Robert -This invasive plant is easily identified by its pungent smell, along with its red stem, parsley-like leaves, and purple flowers--when in bloom.

Stinky Bob/Herb Robert – This invasive plant is easily identified by its pungent smell, along with its red stem, parsley-like leaves, and purple flowers–when in bloom.

Creeping Buttercup - As the name might suggest, this invasive species is a type of ground cover and produces yellow flowers with three to five petals. Growing on hairy stocks, the green jagged leaves are grouped into three with a central leaf

Creeping Buttercup – As the name might suggest, this invasive species is a type of ground cover and produces yellow flowers with three to five petals. Growing on hairy stocks, the green jagged leaves are grouped into three with a central leaf

Morning Glory - Sometimes called Bind Weed--this plant can grow quickly and can be difficult to get rid of.  It climbs up other plants to gain access to more sunlight and because it is not native, it can out compete plants it has latched onto.  It has a spade shaped leaf which grows off of a vine once the vine has wrapped itself around the stem of another plant.

Morning Glory – Sometimes called Bind Weed–this plant can grow quickly and can be difficult to get rid of. It climbs up other plants to gain access to more sunlight and because it is not native, it can out compete plants it has latched onto. It has a spade shaped leaf which grows off of a vine once the vine has wrapped itself around the stem of another plant.

Don’t be alarmed!  Horsetail - Though highly prevalent and somewhat exotic-looking, the soft-spoked stalks of distinctive horsetail is a native forb to Oregon. They flourish in the hot summer months, then fade in the Autumn.

Don’t be alarmed! Horsetail – Though highly prevalent and somewhat exotic-looking, the soft-spoked stalks of distinctive horsetail is a native forb to Oregon. They flourish in the hot summer months, then fade in the Autumn.

Why does all of this matter?

Volunteering at parks and public green spaces is a practical way for all of us to give back to our world, which we are a big part of! It can also foster a deeper connection with nature and provide us all an opportunity for reflection about how everything we do has an impact on ecology. Restoration projects are important to the health and balance of ecosystems, thereby benefitting all of the life forms that occupy it.

What can you do to help?

Volunteer! Tryon Creek Watershed Council coordinates great volunteer opportunities for people who live in and outside of the Tryon Creek Watershed. Volunteers do on-the-ground work of removing invasives and planting new natives.

Do you live on a property bordering a creek or stream in the Tryon Creek Watershed? The Tryon Creek Watershed Council works with private landowners to survey land for invasive plant species, canopy cover, soil erosion, and other factors that contribute to a health of a streamside ecosystem. Volunteer teams are sometimes available to help restore the area by removing invasive species, planting native species, and cataloging the site for further assessment.

For volunteering or help with restoration work on your property, please contact Adra Lobdell, Volunteer Coordinator for Tryon Creek Watershed. Ph.: (904) 476.5592 E-Mail: tcwc.volcoord@gmail.com

 

 

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Jeffrey Gray <![CDATA[Bat Chat]]> http://www.tryonfriends.org/?p=10437 2015-08-12T19:26:11Z 2015-07-17T18:15:18Z bats

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

7:15 – 9:15 pm

 

Sign up for a free night hike led by trained naturalists to experience the bats of Tryon Creek. We will talk about our local bat species and the amazing adaptations that allow them to survive while we walk through the park, ending at the meadow. Once in the meadow, we will watch bats and listen to echolocating bats with the Bat Detector.

This is a free program for all ages. Parents must accompany children on all hikes. For more information, call 503-636-9886 x 225.

Click Here to Register

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Jeffrey Gray <![CDATA[Ecological Explorations – Innovating Nature Experiences]]> http://www.tryonfriends.org/?p=10410 2015-08-05T18:32:31Z 2015-07-11T20:48:25Z IMG_4720

 

Saturday, August 8, 2015

9:00 am – Noon

 

If handheld technology provides instant knowledge on any topic, what will nature guides offer an audience in the near future? We will explore the psychology and meaning behind the role of human-led programs and in-person experiences versus virtual education and community.

This is an adult program which runs from 9:00am – 11:30am (optional lunch from 11:30-12:00)

Free for any FOTC volunteer

$10 (members), $25 (non-members)
Pre-registration required.

Click Here to Register

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Jeffrey Gray <![CDATA[South Creek Trail will be closed for approximately two months]]> http://www.tryonfriends.org/?p=10422 2015-07-16T17:07:36Z 2015-07-10T23:47:26Z South-creek-closure

South Creek Trail will be closed for approximately two months starting Wednesday, July 15, due to the reconstruction and restoration of the trail and Rockinghorse Drainage.  This project will stabilize the slopes of the drainage, rebuild the washed out trail, and will redirect the storm water off the city streets to reduce erosion and the movement of silt into the main stem of Tryon.

For questions and concerns, contact the Park Manager at 503.636.9886 ext. 223.

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Jeffrey Gray <![CDATA[Family Campfire Adventures – Beaks, Teeth, Tongues, and Skulls]]> http://www.tryonfriends.org/?p=10404 2015-08-04T18:43:58Z 2015-07-02T20:26:44Z owl-feeding

Thursday,  August 6

6:00 pm8:00 pm

 

We eat every day and it’s a pretty simple process. For the animals in Tryon it’s a daily struggle to find food. Come explore all the amazing ways that animals find and eat food.

Bring your family for a guided hike through the forest as we discover the awesome variety of animal adaptations we find in Tryon Creek.  We’ll examine all sorts of feet for movement and ears for hearing.  After our hike we’ll roast s’mores over a campfire while we play games and share stories.

Ages: 5-12 with an adult

$10/person (non-member) $5/person (member)

Pre-registration required. 

Click here to Register

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