Monday, December 8, 2014

Mendocino Redwood Company to log on steep and unstable slopes near Elk, CA.


PANORAMIO Photo By Pfaffendorn
THP 1-14-125 MEN (3x4 Elk THP) Mendocino Redwood Company, 1,393 acres; 87% group selection, 12% variable retention, 1% transition logging.  Lower Elk Creek (MD: T14N R16W Sec.5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 16, 17, 18).  Winter operations, high erosion hazard, steep slopes over 65%, steep roads, 109 landslide terrain sites, 99 road failure sites, 54 road drainage work sites, herbicides, coho watershed, 7 spotted owls within .7 mi, osprey nest within 225 ft, white flowered rein orchid, scattered large trees.  Estimated public comment deadline: 12/19/14. VIEW

This THP is about 2.5 miles SE of Elk, CA along the coastline, and about 8 miles SW of Navarro, CA at an elevation of 80 feet to 1,600 feet.  Mendocino Redwood Company is planning a tractor and cable logging operation on steep and unstable slopes in Douglas fir and redwood forests.  The THP area flows into Lower Elk Creek which flows into the Pacific Ocean and contains steelhead and coho salmon.  There are 109 mapped landslide terrain sites including 1 deep seated landslide, and 108 shallow landslides. The deep seated landslide is located on the eastern edge of unit 4 between two class III watercourses (intermittent) and a class II (mid-sized) watercourse.  The shallow landslides include fill failures, cutbank failures, hummocky ground, slumping, and over-steepened scarps related to active and abandoned roads, landings and watercourses. There are 99 mapped road failure sites, however most of these locations are abandoned, 4 seasonal road sites are planned for re-construction, and 2 tractor road sites are planned for re-construction.  Mendocino Redwood Company is planning to use tractors on shallow and deep seated landslide terrain, use tractors on slopes over 50% grade with a high erosion hazard in units 3, 4, 6 and 7, and to use tractors on steep slopes over 65% grade in units 1, 3, 4, 6 and 7.  They also want to use tractors on slopes over 50% grade that do not flatten before reaching a watercourse in units 1, 3, 4, 6 and 7, and to use several tractor roads inside a class II watercourse inside unit 7, and a tractor road near a spring inside unit 10.  54 road drainage sites are planned for work including rocking, dip construction, culvert repair/replacement and ditch cleaning.  There is an osprey nest within 225 ft of unit 4, and white flowered rein orchid was discovered in the cutbank of a haul road.  For spotted owl nesting territory MD089: this THP will remove 173 acres of nesting/roosting habitat within .7 mi; for spotted owl nesting territory MD090: this THP will remove 4 acres of nesting/roosting habitat within .7 mi; for spotted owl nesting territory MD143: this THP will remove 360 acres of nesting/roosting habitat within .7 mi; for spotted owl nesting territory MD181: this THP will remove 12 acres of nesting/roosting habitat within .7 mi; for spotted owl nesting territory MD282: this THP will remove 226 acres of nesting/roosting habitat within .7 mi; for spotted owl nesting territory MD525: this THP will remove 340 acres of nesting/roosting habitat within .7 mi; and for spotted owl nesting territory MD613: this THP will remove 107 acres of nesting/roosting habitat within .7 mi. More information is available on the THP Tracking Center website.

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