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Cape-Falcon Marine Reserve

The 2024 Oregon legislative session has just convened.  Three wildlife bills that Lane Audubon is supporting are up for hearing this week.  Please let your legislators know that you support these bills. Find your legislator:

Or use the OLIS links below to “submit testimony” (upper right at each site).

HB 4132 Marine Reserve Program

The Oregon Marine Reserves Program established about a decade ago has been a great success. They have protected wildlife and their habitat, provided study areas so that we can learn more about this wondrous environment and how to conserve it, improved coastal community economies, and provided connection and education to hundreds of thousands of people. This bill would reinstate funding for ODFW’s Marine Reserve Program in order to continue to protect vital habitat, increase community engagement, continue ecosystem monitoring, and understand resilience in the face of climate change.

HB 4014 Landowners Living with Beavers Grant Program

Beavers act as environmental engineers and keystone species that provide habitat in the form of meadows, wetlands, and riparian vegetation offering resources that may be difficult to find elsewhere. Beaver activity allows for water storage, clean water, and mitigates climate change through carbon capture and storage. Beaver activity provides barriers to wildfire spread and refuges for animals when wildfires occur. It is difficult for an effective management plan to succeed without the means to inform landowners about the importance of beavers and how to manage them for co-existence without resorting to lethal removal.  This program will provide outreach, technical know-how, and funds for tools such as flood protection devices to allow landowners to live with beavers.

HB 4148 Wildlife Package This bill would support and fund a multitude of important work. The components are:

  1. Wildlife and zoonotic disease prevention and response. The bill provides for equipment and capacity to research and respond to highly contagious disease threats, which both decimate wildlife and carry the risk of infecting humans.
  2. Invasive species prevention and response.Invasive species are not native to Oregon and reproduce so prolifically that they threaten our native species. It’s a lot more efficient and less expensive to deal with them before they are well established in numbers that will destroy native species So the time to act is now.
  3. Wildlife coexistence and conflict reduction. We have long sought species management plans that don’t involve killing them.  The Wildlife Coexistence bill would provide funding for five ODFW Wildlife Coexistence Biologists, an ODFW Coexistence Campaign Outreach Coordinator and a Coexistence/ Living with Wildlife Campaign, as well as small grants for Wildlife Rehabilitation Centers. The goal is to educate people on living alongside wildlife, and advance humane solutions when conflicts arise.
  4. Wildlife corridors and road crossings. Safe road crossing can be an effective solution to reduce vehicle collisions with wildlife, harmful to both people and the animals that are hit. Habitat connectivity is important to healthy wildlife populations for genetic reasons as well as the ability to find resources. This bill provides guidance to ODOT (Oregon Department of Transportation) on how to successfully work toward this goal.

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