Saturday, June 21, 2014

Fruit Growers Supply Company to log in spotted owl habitat near Fort Jones, CA.

PANORAMIO Photo By Jacob Pounds
THP 2-14-035 SIS (PatsNor THP) Fruit Growers Supply Company, 878 acres; 70% shelterwood, 19% clearcut, 11% no-harvest logging.  Meamber Creek, Patterson Creek (MD: T44N R9W Sec.7; T44N R10W Sec.12, 13, 14, 23, 24).  Winter operations, moderate erosion hazard, steep slopes up to 70%, 25 road drainage work sites, impaired 303.d watershed, coho watershed, 3 spotted owls within 1.3mi, trees average 105 years old.  Estimated public comment deadline: 07/27/14.  VIEW

This THP is about 6 miles NW of the town of Fort Jones, CA and Highway 3 at an elevation of 2,950 to 4,500 feet.  The THP area flows into the Scott River which contains Chinook salmon, coho salmon, and steelhead trout and is listed as impaired for temperature, sediment and siltation.  Fruit Growers Supply Company is planning a tractor and cable logging operation on steep slopes in Douglas fir, ponderosa pine, white fir, incense cedar and sugar pine forests.  Tractors are proposed in units designated for cable logging where deflection is poor, to yard logs, construct firebreaks and to construct tail holds.  They also want to use ground based equipment on pre existing skid trails with steep slopes over 65% grade, and on steep slopes up to 50% grade that do not flatten before reaching a watercourse.  An exception is proposed to be able to construct and re-construct roads, and to decommission roads between October 15 and November 15, and from April 15 to May 15.  There are 25 road drainage sites planned for work including rocking, dip construction, culvert repair/replacement and ditch cleaning.  Heavy equipment use is also proposed in class III watercourses to construct landings, and to use existing watercourse crossings.  For spotted owl site SK368; this THP will remove 5 acres of foraging habitat within 1.3 mi; for spotted owl site SK369; this THP will remove 57 acres of foraging habitat within .5 mi, and 17 acres of foraging habitat within 1.3 mi.  For spotted owl site SK370; this THP will remove 15 acres of foraging habitat within .5 mi, and 66 acres of foraging habitat within 1.3 mi. More information is available on the THP Tracking Center website.

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