Clackamas River Invasive Species Partnership

CRISP(new colors)The Clackamas River Invasive Species Partnership (CRISP) was formed to improve the management of invasive species within the Clackamas River watershed in northwestern Oregon. This partnership was initiated through the cooperative efforts of the Clackamas River Basin Council (CRBC) and the Clackamas Soil and Water Conservation District (CSWCD), with additional funding and support from Metro regional government.

Prior to the group’s formation the Clackamas River Basin Council and the Clackamas Soil and Water Conservation District both had strong landowner assistance programs for control of priority invasive weeds and to restore riparian habitat in targeted areas of the watershed. Development of the CRISP provided an opportunity to coordinate these efforts, as well as leverage the efforts of additional partners across the Clackamas River watershed.

The first goal of the partnership was to identify current invasive species control efforts underway within the watershed. Tools such as online surveys and stakeholder meetings provided this information. Second a Technical Advisory Group (TAG) of federal, state, regional, and local land managers convened to discuss existing efforts, long-term goals and outcomes, available resources, and management strategies. Information provided by the TAG served as the foundation for development of the Clackamas River Invasive Species Management Plan, a comprehensive approach for managing invasive species within the watershed.

The TAG meetings revealed strong support for invasive species planning among participants. During these meetings, TAG members broadly agreed to participate in ongoing planning and implementation efforts.  The partnership grew to include the 22 TAG members from 13 organizations.

In addition to the information provided by the TAG, a prioritization model known as the Weed Heuristics: Invasive Population Prioritization for Eradication Tool (WHIPPET) developed in California was adapted for use within the Clackamas River watershed.

The WHIPPET model helped prioritize infestations of nineteen priority invasive species based on their potential impact, potential spread, and feasibility of control. Criteria related to specific populations, the ecology of the invasive species, and the quality of the area under threat, were all included in the WHIPPET model analysis.

Due to the size and complexity of the watershed, as well as resource scarcity, CRISP partners also sought to prioritize specific geographic areas for action. They  ranked sub-watersheds based on:

The findings of this assessment were considered alongside additional factors including partner investments and engagement resulted in the establishment of four priority areas within the Clackamas River watershed.

Japanese knotweed growing along Deep Creek. Photo by Clackamas River Basin Council

Japanese knotweed growing along Deep Creek. Photo by Clackamas River Basin Council

Action plans created for each of the four priority areas were based on land use, the likelihood of invasive species introduction, survey and eradication needs, and restoration opportunities. These priority area action plans collectively form the Clackamas River Invasive Species Management Plan. This plan outlines a clear and objective approach to managing invasive species in the Clackamas River watershed.

With the recent completion of the Clackamas River Invasive Species Management Plan, the CRISP partners have begun to leverage existing resources and seek additional outside funding to support actions within the watershed. Planning of cooperative implementation activities is currently underway for the 2016 field season.

Many thanks to all of the CRISP partners, including:

Download a copy of the Clackamas River Invasive Species Management Plan

DOWNLOAD THE CRISP PLAN

For more information about the Clackamas River Invasive Species Partnership, contact:

Samuel Leininger

WeedWise Program Manager

Clackamas Soil and Water Conservation District

sleininger@conservationdistrict.org

503-210-6006

OR

Cheryl McGinnis

Executive Director

Clackamas River Basin Council

cheryl@clackamasriver.org

503-303-4372 x100