Salmon population gets attention in Siuslaw National Forest

Trees transported in Siuslaw National Forest to help Salmon population (Photos credit to North Fork Siuslaw Helicopter Project)

LANE COUNTY, Ore. - A major project is underway in the Siuslaw National Forest near Florence.

Crews are moving massive trees by helicopter from the forest to the rivers nearby., and it's all for salmon.

By rerouting the trees into the stream, it helps to build a better environment for salmon and the ecosystem as a whole.

Salmon pass through this area to feed and mate, something that is necessary to keep the number of salmon to increase. Without the trees the fish wouldn't have a place to call home.

"The roots of the tree are really important," said Eli Tome. "They can hide in those rootwads and in high velocity periods so the helicopter is picking up these trees whether it be whole trees with root wads and flying them down into the valley bottom."

In the late 1800's, there were more than 450,000 salmon, but a century later there was less than a thousand.

Ever since, environmentalist groups like the Siuslaw Watershed Council have made it their mission to restore the area and have seen a steady growth.

Transporting the trees helps make sure the salmon population continues to rise.

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