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MetaData for Little Deschutes Subbasin Watershed Assessment

Little Deschutes Subbasin Watershed Assessment

Identification Information

Originator: Upper Deschutes Watershed Council
Publish Date: March 2002
Online Link: None
BPA Project #:
Contact Information
Agency: Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board
Name: Ashley Seim
Job Position: Web Specialist
Telephone: 503-986-0186
E-Mail Address:
Abstract: Many of the impacts to fish and wildlife habitat and water quality in the Little Deschutes River Subbasin are concentrated in the areas of housing, roads, and other human development. Most of the human population in the subbasin is concentrated around the community centers of La Pine, Gilchrist, Crescent, and Crescent Lake. There is significant dispersed development along the lower reaches of the Little Deschutes River between the communities of Sunriver and La Pine -an area characterized by gentle topography and depressions with forested wetlands, marshes and shallow lakes. Streams in this area, as illustrated by the Little Deschutes River , are low gradient and originate in the high elevation areas in the southwest portion of the watershed where there is higher precipitation. This ownership pattern has significant implications for natural resource management, as lower gradient floodplain areas tend to provide important wetland, fish, and wildlife habitat. Key Findings Fuel Loading: Having homes safe from wildfires is a concern for many residents. Fire suppression has increased the amount of dry wood in the area, creating a ready source for major wildfires. Riparian Areas and Wetlands: Loss of wetland and riparian areas , especially in the lower areas along the Little Deschutes River , has affected a number of resources. Water quality has been affected by the reduced wetlands that act as filters of nitrogen; the loss of streamside trees and other vegetation reduces shade that helps to cool water temperatures. Finally, loss ofwetlands and riparian vegetation has reduced important fish and wildlife habitats. Wildlife: The growth and development have altered wildlife habitats. Loss of wetlands, streamside vegetation, and other changes in the watershed have reduced important wildlife habitat. Roads and development have impacted migrating mule deer, increasing collisions between deer and cars and altering their migration pathways. Fish: There has been a significant loss of native trout and an increase in introduced brook and brown trout in the Little Deschutes River and tributaries. Loss of native trout is from competition with introduced species and changes in aquatic habitat and water temperatures. Water Quality: A major concern about the water in the river is unusually high temperatures in the summer and the abnormal growth of algae. Other studies indicated that there are problems with groundwater loading ofnitrogen. The high water table (with associated wetlands), and porous pumice soils contributes to increased nitrates, a by-product of septic systems and an indicator of human pathogens.
Purpose: The purpose of the assessment is to use existing information to characterize historical and current watershed conditions for the Little Deschutes River Subbasin. The assessment findings will help the Watershed Council identify opportunities for voluntary actions to improve fish and wildlife habitat and water quality.
Time Period of Content:
Geographic Extent: Little Deschutes Subbasin, Deschutes Basin
Status: Final
Use Constraints:
Format: PDF
Data Quality Information

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File Name File Type Category File Uploaded
Little Deschutes Subbasin WS Assess pt1of3.pdf Document File 1/27/2010 2:59:45 PM
Little Deschutes Subbasin WS Assess pt2of3.pdf Document File 1/27/2010 2:56:49 PM
Little Deschutes Subbasin WS Assess pt3of3.pdf Document File 1/27/2010 2:54:43 PM

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