March 22, 2009
Tern Resettlement Fiasco Continued: Page Bottom
Fern Ridge Reservoir
Caspian Tern Mitigation:
Tern Island, April 3. 2008. Had the island looked
like this on March 3 there would
be hope of attracting the wily feathered
beasts (the Caspian Tern) this year. . .
Tern Island Ziggurat April 3 too late for the northern migration
but the square
flat acre looks great but the Caspian Tern passed overhead
a month ago.
the Caspian Tern is forced on a trail of tears
the Corps of Engineers.
Caspian Tern was discovered to have been taking the lions share of salmon smolt
migrating back to sea from the Columbia. Five years ago, it was decide to move
the Tern Rookery to a more benign location. Fern Ridge Reservoir was picked and
the rest is history. There was little public notice of this forced relocation
of the species and no request for public input. I had discovered the relocation
by accident and tried to float suggestions to the Corps but found no way to contact
the appropriate bureau.
I had distinct suggestions to front to the Corps
for positive modifications to help the project succeed. It was only after contacting
the ODF&W that I was given a Corps address to submit information. I was given
no acknowledgment of receipt of suggested improvements. I was only to discover
after Tern Island was plopped in place that none of my suggestions or modifications
were implemented. Suggestions that, I felt, would help secure the success of the
project, the Corps of Engineers is above taking public input it seems. And now
the lake is less than half full with little hope of Tern Island being an island
Looking south from the shoal running to Gibson Island. pics taken 3/08/08
Tern Island is one square acre of rock dumped at the end of Royal Ave.
Now there is an entire new industry, endangered
The Caspian Terns, on their lofty pedestal, will have box seats for
the land-speed trials on the mud flats of Fern Ridge Reservoir.
Tern Island: South-East corner, blind for calling
those mysterious terns. pics taken 3/08/08
Corps of Engineers Ziggurat: atop the plateau, a shrine to Corps sensitivity.
is in place it would have been a sign of foresight to have filled the lake.
Fern Ridge is the best sailing venue in Oregon
and supports a considerable sailing community, sailors of all types, racers cruisers
and gunkholers. There were to be two National Championship Races to be held this
year but management ineptitude has closed our opportunity to entertain competition.
I have no problem with a better managed lake for the promotion of wildlife species,
flora and fauna. I had hoped the Corps of Engineers would start treating Fern
Ridge Lake as the precious place that it is, but instead it's just another management
headache; an obsolete encumbrance to be placed on the back burner
the ugly stepchild of dalliances long past.
Fern Ridge has suffered abuse
after abuse by the Corps of Engineers as its importance is eclipsed by other priorities,
but it's the most trafficked lake in Oregon. Somehow this problem must be reconciled.
I am hoping the sailing community will take more interest in the overall health
of the lake, a lake that sustains a vibrant sailing community. I would hope the
Corps of Engineers might take an active interest in imaginative interactive management
for the sake of all involved.
all know the water quality of Fern Ridge needs a facelift. There needs be year-round
flow in that lake. Summer flow has been proposed for years by shunting the Mill
Race into the Amazon Slough to refresh the exhausted and polluted lake in late
With the retrofit of Hydro Power in the Dam face there would be a
solid rational for the whole McGilla. It's a no brainer to add supply to the grid.
The Dam is like new after the rebuild Plug and play.
an operation like that, Eugene gets a waterway in town, Kids can float to Fern
Ridge, the fish can swim and the birds gonna fly.
An operation like that
requires no more infrastructure but just change the plugs and good to go. The
best part is, the Corps of Engineers would have to run the dam like an instrument
rather than using it as a blunted club. Then the operators, with their feet on
the control panel, would have do something besides pop gum.
heavy hand of engineered mitigation:
The Army Corps Of Engineers (AEC) has no interest in seeing the Caspian Tern Resettlement
Program to success. The planning for such a project was not thought through. This
Pro-Forma exercise was just another project to soothe the duped and move more
the Corps been earnest the Lake would have been at least 60% full by early March
to insure that "Tern Island" was in fact an island rather than a wasteland.
The Tern Resettlement Program has become the Tern Resettlement Pogrom.
Fern Ridge Reservoir Rule
Curve for all to see
a glass half full is not a glass half empty a glass
half empty is not half full.
Tern Island: Looking
North, a Corps. of Engineers Pro forma exercise. pics taken 3/08/08
Island on Right and our lovely "little" lake is waffeling off in the
This is it. With a cast of thousand, at a cost of millions, Tern Island is
here to stay.
The bulk of rock is defiantly square and definitely engineered
so satellites from space can testify to its symmetry. The perfect square is placed
on a north south axis as Caspian Terns are attracted to geometric forms and billiard
table flatness. As the Pyramids of Cheops, the edifice will last thousands of
years. Many years hence archeologists will measure and conclude that some advanced
culture had created a rookery for Caspian Terns to nest.
the Corps been interested in attracting the smarter terns they might have designed
a pentagon or a hexagon perhaps an ellipsises to challenge their wits. Islands
can be 'U' shaped too.
Or: If I were into Conspiracy
Theory, I might conclude this is the first step in a covert operation to build
a Nuclear Power Generation Plant. The vented heat from power generation could
promote new crops. Water Hyacinth comes to mind to add to the already introduced
species for the good of man. I can imagine the stacks shooting skyward for us
all to wonder; "What's in it for me?"
Tern Island: the plane of the rookery is filled with
pea gravel: the perfect driving range
Tern Island is one square (very square) acre raised to a level several feet
above theoretical high water mark. Theoretical High Water is, this year, quite
we had the same thought too. Tern Island would be a great place for Japanese interns
to practice their gravel raking skills. An aspiring gravel raker could rake patters
of infinite complexity while more students could cover the work with yet more
patterns and on and on. The possibilities are boundless for the apprentice Japanese
Gardener; the experiment could spread to other islands too.
Tea Cup Syndrome:
The Tea Cup Syndrome: I find it troubling,
the Corps can't reconcile the
disparity between the RED LINE and THE BLUE
LINE of the rule
Seems that the two lines, if engineered, should
coalesce into a synchronized
efficient use of resource.
As one can see
by the TEA CUP CURVE, Fern Ridge engineering looks like the
water to be retained
is the lowest priority in this regulatory process as
is ignorant of the CURVE RULE:
THE GRAPH IS THE PRIORITY.
graph alone is evidence of a job well done. The numbers alone speak
successes of engineering. HURRAH! But the idea is to fill the
Why do the red line and blue line seem to ignore one another?
postulate that this ignorance is engineered by the Corps. The graph
an end unto itself.
As can be noticed, the discreet control
of draining (left of curve) is at
odds with filling (right side of curve).
The lake is just the method for
generating lots of numbers. And the numbers
are good numbers, as numbers go they are
as good as numbers can be.
But the idea is to fill the lake.
FINAL POSTULATE: I WILL SUBMIT,
THERE SHOULD BE SOME ATTEMPT TO ARREST THIS IGNORANCE AND HOLD THE CORPS TO ACCOUNT.
WILLY NILLY BLIND OBEDIENCE TO REGULATIONS WRITTEN IN 1939 IS IGNORANCE, engineered
The idea is to fill the lake.
Prayer Management is an option,
engineering a large enough group of
devotees to turn the trick is massively
inefficient when one can see by the Rule
Curve Graph, there was no need for
Prayer Management, just rational use of
Soon: The Caspian Terns, on their lofty pedestal, will have
box seats for
the land-speed trials on the mud flats of Fern Ridge Reservoir.
Tragedy of the Commons
Lord Bufort Mumford Augustine Tullyrill's Shoe Last
5th The International Shoebox Sculpture Exhibition.
An exercise in willful
a tragedy of the commons.
Bimbi Lubosos Right Foot
From the 6th The International Shoebox Sculpture Exhibition.
Example of history not recorded for obvious reasons; For insurrection, mitigations
are plentiful in human history. Disobedience is the bane of human order -- in
the natural world the problems only multiply exponentially.
lake is filling but slowly
Filling with Senseless Beauty
The lake is filling
but slowly, it's finally more than 50% full. Had it been at the level it is now
in early march, there might have been hope of attracting birds this year. This
page has links to water level.
I went out to have another look 3/22/08. If
you go out, look at the roadbed you are driving on. Note the painted hashmarks.
That would only be the damage the county can directly attribute to fair wear and
tear; the roads leading to Royal Ave have taken a hit too.
I rode a bike out
to the second barricade, I was not able to see much from there but I did see how
much road building it took to get the yardage out to build the island.
roadbed has been raised from 18" to 24" all the way out to "Tern
A good question: How much did it cost to build Tern Island?
How much did it cost to build the road to build Tern Island?
My bet is: The
cost of the road exceeds the cost of the island by a factor of two.
the Corps is not forthcoming, the contractor would be helpful I am sure.
guess is: The road cost was not factored into the cost of the project.
When standing on Tern Island looking north, you can see a berm running north to
That berm was built several years ago during the autumn and
it took no additional improvements to yard that gravel to build the water catchment
If the Corps wants to surround Tern Island with water why not continue, the now
built up roadbed, around Tern Island to connect with the water catchment berm.
You know, like a castle with a moat.
with all this filling of a flood control reservoir by the Corps of Engineers there
is less water to impound for that Biblical event for which all this strutting
and fretting was tasked
Remember, when creating Senseless Beauty, Less is
to the Corps of Engineers for the Caspian Tern Project
To: Geoff Dorsey
Geoff, this is to confirm suggestions presented to your office.
Thanks for sending an e-mail of your recollections on Fern Ridge
E-mail traffic from ODFW was helpful in getting through to you.
our previous conversation there was discussed in summary:
1. larger rock on
Gibson Island road sub-impoundment dike to provide
better fisheries habitat
conditions for both crayfish and small game fish. Rock should be scattered on
both sides of the berm.
2. Fish habitat is degrading at Fern Ridge with encroachment
of reeds canarygrass. This could be mitigated by mindful pool level control and
some eradication program.
3. turbidity-siltation concern behind Gibson Island
dike, 6" deep and fast accretion.
4. adjust Northern
50 meters of sub-impoundment berm 45 degrees to facilitate silt removal from area;
allow current flow behind berm by wind surface current and wave action in summer.
lower level of sub-impoundment berm to within 6" of south discharge to facilitate
current for sediment discharge; removed material can be used to build the 45 degree
wing berm to channel surface current behind berm to flush sediment.
channels that formerly separated Gibson Island into 3-4
islands and thus facilitate
centrarchid spawning in former prime spawning
area for that species and promote
yet more fisheries for tern resettlement.
6. Rotate Tern Island 45 degrees
to north to cut run up by waves (to 5 feet swells) and install a small breakwater
to the north of breaking swells from Summer Northerlies.
I would suggest several
small breakwaters, arches of rock from 50 to 100 feet long extending west from
existing sub-straight berm.
7. Consider felling cottonwood trees around lake
parameter to improve fisheries. Either ODFW or Corps. could, at low pool pull
over selected cottonwood onto lake-shore. This would help arrest shore erosion
as well as promote fish /bug / bird habitat. I stress pulling over trees to secure
tree in place, leaving rootball to secure the snag; by this process, the lingering
survival of felled tree will promote more insect habitation and fish cover.
8. For God Sakes do something about Zumwalt Park erosion. Shit it's a no-brainer
to save that beautiful spot; I watched the Corps. remove and burn several hundred
tons of vitrified stumps from the lake two years ago. That material could have
been used to stabilize Zumwalt Park and other spots on the lake. I could not believe
9. I have a myriad of suggestions, to include invasive species eradication,
but for now this is sufficient.
Thank you for receiving my suggestions. I
hope they will help in the success of the Caspian Tern Resettlement Program.
Caspian Tern on the wing
As a sailor I can appriciate the foils on
Tern Nesting Cycle
The Caspian Terns return to Oregon from
their southern migration locations in early March. Eggs are laid in late April
and peaks in early May. Only 1 to 3 eggs are laid. Incubation is 26 - 28 days
and chicks will fly 4 to 5 weeks later. Caspian Terns are the largest of the North
American terns and can live a long time, frequently over 20 years. Their diet
is mostly small fish that they capture near the surface of the water.
provided by the Lane Audubon Society
A species reliant on fisheries.
The Caspian Tern rookery was originally situated along the shore of Long Beach
Washington. Years ago the Long Beach folks opened the beach to all form or motorsports
and recreation, development of beach-side housing, Condos, etc., thus pushing
out the Caspian Tern form it homeland.
The resilient Caspian Tern moved their
nesting grounds to the mouth of the Columbia where the Corps of Engineers had
created an ideal nesting ground by dumping the spoil from dredging the of the
Columbia Shipping Channel so those out-sized container ships from China can get
to us, The Consumer, to disgorge its bounty.
These huge sand dunes extend
to the river making for perfect fledging and fishing; a Caspian Tern could waddle
from its babies down to the shore and pluck a few salmon smolt, waddle back and
not even have to get wet or fly. It was like heaven until wildlife biologists
discovered that the Caspian Tern was plucking 60 percent of salmon fry headed
back to sea. So it is now recognized that the Caspian Tern Tribe must pack up
from its reservation and march on, a metaphorical "trail of tears" to
Fern Ridge to live happily ever after.
The Corps of Engineers has without
any thought plopped down a hunk of rock in Fern Ridge. This was done without any
preparation, thought or insight. The Corps of Engineers has moved a bunch of bulk
out in the now dry reservoir in a pro-forma exercise of plausible deniability.
Now the Caspian Tern must dutifully respond to the delicate hand of the Corps
Epilogue: The Corps of Engineers is about removing a problem
(Caspian Tern) they created by going through the motions of providing space for
a species that has no interest in hanging out at Fern Ridge especially if the
lake is a mudhole with no fish.
So, in the end, the Corps of Engineers, an
Institution just a hundred years old has the right to exterminate a species that
has lived on this Earth for millions of years.
This will all be done by mandate
of The Corps Mission.
The Mission is: As MacArthur put it, "The Corps
The Corps and The Corps."
Clubs on Fern Ridge
A family oriented Yacht Club with moorage and Club house
near Richardson Bay.
Yacht Club Triton Yacht Club is a very active club located on the Fern Ridge
Reservoir, near Eugene, Oregon. Triton hosts many activities in the form
of regattas, cruising, club and fleet racing, and community gatherings.
County not happy
Why you ask?
The Corps. sees fit to build their Pro-Forma solution in midwinter. Lane County
Roads paid a heavy price for the Caspian Tern and ACE engineering. County demands
compensation for road damage.
Why, if The Corps. having no intention of attracting
birds this year, build in mid-winter? The ACE could have thought through the idea
and worked in Sept. and Oct., Nov. of 08 and worked on hard-earth saving much
treasure. February was not the time to work in a bog;
why not first stay home,
play the X box or with toy models or with Jell-O and get it right then, then mass
their assault to save the Tern.
| || |
the Corps and the Corps
Letter to Randy Kolb
Randy, thanks for the criticism
without using the "venom" accusation, it
makes for a more civil
As a Venomous pseudo-intellectual, I might pose our respective
Eyc,Tyc, Jrc attend each others discussion on the Corps of
treatment the Long Tom Watershed in preperation for the meeting
with the ACE.
The Lane County and City of Eugene, need to engage as they are
invested in Fern Ridge as are many others non affiliated
interested parties, etc.
Further engagement with the
Long Tom Watershed Council would be helpful.
History should not repeat itself
but it could rhyme.
Randy you state: "The fill curve
is driven by unpredictable events - the
weather. My guess is that in about
a week we will be right on the curve. At that point wailing at the ACE about the
2008 fill curve will be, well, silly."
I will allow the
weather its due, but it's silly to allow the ACE to do what
it does. What
is silly? It's silly not to demand the DoD Corps of Engineers live
Randy, Had you really looked? I will draw you attention to
Oct 11, 07 missive, Letter to Fern Ridge
The Corps has changed its mandate. The whole rule curve strategy is
rethought. So, let us help rethink it and that's not silly.
is silly, is to ho-hum our way till next year and on an on till we
Corps & Sailors meeting
April 21, 6:00pm at EYC
1) The meeting is open
to all Fern Ridge sailors - tell one, tell all.
2) Questions for the Corps
MUST be submitted to me (email@example.com)
by April 11 at noon
- that gives you two weeks to submit your questions.
3) Due to the number
of people we are expecting, there will NOT be a chance for
the floor the night of the Corps presentation. You have a question? You
it to firstname.lastname@example.org by April 11 at noon. Yes, there will be a
meeting facilitator and yes, you will take a long walk on a short plank if
you think this
whole "ask your question prior to the meeting" doesn't
apply to you.
4) I'll tally the questions/topics and submit to the Corps
on the 11th.
5) So what do you do if you have a question for the Corps
all say it together
email my question to email@example.com
by noon on April 11th".
So, what do you want to learn from the meeting?
Let me know!
There will probably be some form of food and I'm guessing the
S20 fleet meeting will be
prior to the 6:30pm Corps meeting. More to come
on the details from our esteemed
April 3. 2008. The Caspian Tern Deeks look good and the sound system, great.
From the Ship's Log of Wyde Lode: Nesting Decoys oogling to other nesting
decoys it's lonely out there but for the scarcrows and there can
be found no crows within miles and miles. The Corps has engineered a square flat
space, Ziggurat, because the Corps likes to engineer stuff but the tern won't
nest there "It's too flat"
The cost $757,000
is the cost of the Island but the road to build it, how much did that cost? Just
think how much defence Blackwater Security could provide the Homeland with that
money? How many guns and good guys could protect us from evil doers with that
good money. Who is running this operation? Why? What's in it for us anyways? Why
not invest everything in Homeland Defence and share the fantasy.
Corps & Sailors meeting
Questions to be answered
April 21, 6:00 pm at EYC
questions submitted to the Corps of Engineers to be answered, public meeting at
Eugene Yacht Club
Meeting begins at 6pm next Monday at EYC.
Would you please explain the basic history of the
dam, its original purpose, what the "rule
curve" is in terms of
a management device, where it came from, how often it is evaluated,
criteria used to determine when the lake is filled, to what level, and when the
water is let out.
What legislation determines the purpose of the dam
and the regulation of its levels?
What is the language of this legislation?
What are the legally mandated goals that must be
fulfilled by those people
and organizations responsible for filling and emptying the lake?
other considerations that area also used to make these decisions? What are they?
How specific is it in terms of the fill curve, recognized stakeholders, who manages
lake, and how they make their decisions?
How does the Corps of
Engineers share the long term watershed plan with the public?
B. Does the
public have any way to influence decisions made?
What are the primary factors
that control the current operation of the dam?
II. Fill curve:
The urban myth is the fill curve was developed 50 years ago and has not been
since, true? If true, have there been studies or plans for studies
to evaluated its
effectiveness for flood control while assuring adequate
water supply for recreation?
What document contains the supporting analysis
for the current operational curve? Does
the Corps feel that all the assumptions
and data used in that analysis is still valid based
on current conditions
and best available data?
What is the statistical reliability of reaching
full pool on any given year? Does the Corps
have a target reliability they
would like to achieve? Has a reliability analysis been
conducted? If so,
what is the title of that document?
Could there be alternative fill curves
that are chosen for a season based on variable
criteria - predicted weather
pattern, snowpack levels, etc.?
Is the Corps making any adjustment to its
management plan and strategy for water
conservation over downstream navigation
and flood control based upon climate change?
B. If so, will the Corps take
into account the needs and desires of lake users?
Why is it necessary to
drain the lake 20 feet when the top 2 or 3 ft contain 80% of the
water in the lake?
Could the fill of the lake start in January and be regulated
locally? Could the draw down of
the lake be postponed for a few weeks into
Oct. and the lake level left higher throughout
What are the
downstream flow requirements by month? Is it true that the Corps is required
to provide a certain amount of irrigation water from Fern Ridge to downstream
year? What water levels are required to meet the terms of that
Has the Corp considered extending the Mill Race to the Amazon
Canal so it could feed
water from the Willamette River into Fern Ridge?
the Corps considered modifications to Fern Ridge Reservoir that would improve
homeland, such as hydroelectric Generation or modification to lake levels
more of a pool more often?
III. Natural Resources:
Given the Corps negotiations with The Nature Conservancy Sustainable
does this reflect a flexibility in management practice going
into the future?
Does the installation of Tern Island imply the mission
of Fern Ridge has changed?
B. Within the Caspian Tern Resettlement project
are there modifications, allowances for
lake administration including
the fill curve? If so, in what way and how soon?
C. When do the Caspian
Terns nest and fledge? What water level is required for them to do
How was that determined? Are there other birds that use Fern Ridge
certain minimum water levels at particular times for successful reproduction?
Will the Corps attempt to promote desirable species and recreation by extending
useful season of Fern Ridge?
Are there efforts to suppress the
spread of invasive species, water weed and land plants?
Is there policy
stated for the promotion of wildlife species?
Do recreational users of the lake have any recognized importance in the management
B) Same as above for wildlife.
BLM, the county, and
the Corps have projects around the lake. Is there a coordinating
committee that develops plans and/or shares information about short and long
Does the Corps consult with other organizations, like the
BLM, ODF&W, Long Tom
Is the Core Corps administration
policy for the Long Tom Watershed up for review?
Is the Corps of Engineers
working with Lane County in the reconstruction of Richardson
V. Data Requested:
What is the flood history for the downstream regions
of the Fern Ridge watershed?
Where can the public find a complete historical
record of lake levels? The published data
on the USGS website is incomplete.
the Corps provide, or give guidance as to how to obtain, the stage-volume curve
bathymetric survey data for the reservoir?
Is there an existing
reservoir model for Fern Ridge? If so, how can the public obtain a
often is the Fern Ridge Reservoir website updated, including relevant data, links
include a contact addresses?
Is it possible to post on your website
Lake Levels by volume and rule curve for each year it
has operated along
with a graph of rainfall for each year.
What is the web site we can go to,
to find the topographical data of the hole so we can
figure out mathematically
exactly what the volume percentages are at the different levels?
Yes, The AEC is trading habitat
for habitat but the horror, the horror of stupidity.
the deeks are in place and the sounds of oogling terns
plop and it's there.
Note: the Tern will not nest
on a flat space, they will not attract real birds as the island is not mounded
to afford the Tern a view of the water to protect themselves from preditors
Terns love a room with a view; an open unobstructed field of view is paramount
for nesting terns but the Corps of Engineers cant afford the attention to detail.
The Caspian Tern:
These birds have been
around for millions of years, having developed stratagies over time for the species
to succeed. The Corps could learn from the Tern.
News Flash: July 6, 08
the Log of Wyde Lode
Mitigated Successes, Caspian Tern sighted -- July 6, 08
west of Gibson Island
one Caspian Tern was seen around 13:00.
The Tern was on the wing circling
a patch of water that has been proven grounds for Osprey fishing.
circled for a minute and was off headed west for parts unknown.
million in mitigation the Caspian Tern Resettlement program has broken new ground.
The presence of just one Caspian Tern on Fern Ridge Reservoir is a victory for
the Corps and all the brave men and women that salute the flag under the banner
of the Corps of Engineers.
Great job folks.
from Sailor Luddite, Time: 0845
Fernridge reservoir 1nm NNW of Gibson Island
Conditions: Force 2 with clear
I had spent the
night anchored in the lee of Gibson Island on
Fernridge reservoir the night
of August 02, 2008. Awoke early, had my coffee and was sailing back towards Richardson
marina from the north side of Gibson Island when around 0845 I observed 4 large
terns flying off my port quarter. I watched them dip, dive and frolic for about
1 1/2 minuets before they rose to about 35' of elevation and steadily flew off
in a northerly direction,m i lost sight of them after about 1 minute.
from the Log of Wyde Lode
Beyond the first
Caspian tern sighting there is another incident, an encounter on September 7,
08. This rare event took place just after sunset in a stout northerly, about 20
knots. The Caspian Tern wheeled in ever tighter circles to then scooped the water
and then it was off not to be seen again.
year same problem
21, 09 Ziggurat by Zumwalt
sail of the year
Yes, Wyde-Lode, the old gal gets another
bullet, the honors keep mounting. She got her dunking, a quick tune and a voyage,
and yes it was eventful. A nice beat to Zumwalt and a reach to our new island,
for housing the wayward Caspian Tern, what's it called?
We were going to record
the first of the New Nesters. But alas, the lake was not full enough to attract
the northern migration, yes, they are up on the
Columbia again pestering the
makers of our ziggurat on the mudflats
The Corps or Engineers.
then, from the southwest a wall of dark energy appeared.
Twas kinda scary
for a while. We reached from Zumwalt to Orchard Pt. in 12 minutes, they went by
quickly powered by a "WHITE SQUALL."
Wyde-Lode's stern spitted out
a tongue of flat water 10 meters. It was all fine at 30 knots but in the puffs,
at 40 plus, things got twitchy.
We got wet, very wet. But endorphins must
be tickled or one won't know where trim is.
23 beat,Wyde lode in search of Ziggurats
3/21/09 Airport weather station
recorded a weather cell gusting to 45 knots with sustained winds of 25 to 30 knots.
Caspian terns, sequentially displaced by human activities, have found a, somewhat,
refuge in San Francisco Bay.
to appropiate organizations
Fern Ridge discussion board for the sailing community
County (Oregon) Audubon Society
A chapter of the National Audubon
Society and a non-profit organization
dedicated to the conservation of and
education about our natural environment,
with a primary focus on birds, other
wildlife, and their habitats.
Eugene Wetlands Education Center
Located in the watershed of
the Long Tom River, a major tributary of our Willamette River, the West Eugene
Wetlands comprises 3,000 acres of rare habitat, protected and restored by the
West Eugene Wetlands Partnership, a unique partnership of state, federal and private
Caspian Tern Resettlement Fiasco
A species reliant on fisheries.
The Caspian Tern rookery was originally
situated along the shore of Long
Beach Washington. Years ago the Long Beach folks
opened the beach to all
form or motorsports and recreation, development of
beach-side housing, Condos,
etc., thus pushing out the Caspian Tern form it
Caspian Tern moved their nesting grounds to the mouth of
the Columbia where
the Corps of Engineers had created an ideal nesting ground by
spoil from dredging the of the Columbia Shipping Channel so those
container ships from China can get to us, The Consumer, to disgorge
These huge sand dunes extend to the river making for perfect fledging and
fishing; a Caspian Tern could waddle from its babies down to the shore and
pluck a few salmon smolt, waddle back and not even have to get wet or fly.
was like heaven until wildlife biologists discovered that the Caspian
plucking 60 percent of salmon fry headed back to sea. So it is now
that the Caspian Tern Tribe must pack up from its reservation
and march on, a
metaphorical "trail of tears" to Fern Ridge to
live happily ever after.
The Corps of Engineers has without any thought plopped
down a hunk of rock in
Fern Ridge. This was done without any preparation,
thought or insight. The
Corps of Engineers has moved a bunch of bulk out
in the now dry reservoir in a
pro-forma exercise of plausible deniability.
Now the Caspian Tern must dutifully respond to the delicate hand of the Corps
Epilogue: The Corps of Engineers is about removing
a problem (Caspian Tern)
they created by going through the motions of providing
space for a species
that has no interest in hanging out at Fern Ridge especially
if the lake is a
mudhole with no fish. So, in the end, the Corps of Engineers,
an Institution two
hundred years old has the right to exterminate a species
that has lived on this Earth for
millions of years. This will all be done
by mandate of the Corps mission.
Island, Fern Ridge
The island is built to Corps standards, one square
acre. If you want to
see what a square acre looks like the Corps has created
a text book example
for all to see; I'm not sure if the Caspian Terns appreciate
geometry but they
should because it looks like the base of a pyramid; a frustum
I believe it's
called. All dress right dress, shucks it looks engineered
to me, go visit it's
at the end of Royal Ave.
Terns are migratory, they
just need a place to plop to do their
procreation thing, make babies, feed
the babies, teach-em to fly and they are happy;
they don't need no stinking
square acre built to bombshelter standards. But, if
the Corps dumps $2 million
in rock to make an island and the lake don't fill
because they see fit to
flush the lake below the curve rule then the island is not
an island and
no amount of decoys and squawkers on tape loops will call them
The first shot took out the left foot, the other took out the right. The
Corps has made no provisions for additional fisheries improvement so the
Caspian Terns will have to cut bait all day and fish by lantern at night.
think the Tern is aware of this need for continuing education --
not a Corps problem -- "The little bastards are just slow
At least they won't be eating salmon smolt.
You can only
guess how happy the Audobon Society is? The Corps, like the
roar of a D9
Cat rumbles on and on, lumbering over hill and dale eating up
supplied by you and me; shucks, I can hear the lugs slapping the
here. In the Business it's called a Moral Hazard. In a perfect
Corps of Engineers would merge with Hallibuton, Walmart and
supply us with everything the world needs A secured flat planet with
endless rows of cargo containers filled with stuff to salve our souls.
the Tern thing don't work out, it will be a great place to lease, lease it
to one of them Demon Worshiping baby sacrificing cults that live out in
I can see them out there in their feathered robes with blood rolling off
the alter to seep into the drinking bowl while chanting devotees crowd the
plaza. Oooh buga buga, I have spoken.
Gus O. Kahan
Open Letter to Fernsail Discussion Group
I would like to refresh your memories. It was last October that I proposed
some active interest in cooperation with other organizations to set some
kindling under the ossified people that brought New Orleans to its knees.
As it were, what with Global Warming (climate change) there is much to
I'm not sure the Corps of Engineers is equipped to move beyond a
pace, a pace inappropiate for what this planet now faces the glaciers
There are concerned organizations that have interest in this
besides the sailing community; this is important for building any
coherent direction for the Corps to march to.
We can continue
with our myopic sailing obsession or we can look to the
needs of the entire
watershed, its flora and fauna, upstream and downstream
while enjoying our
I have enclosed my October 11 missive on this issue;
I hope after you
look at the reservoir this year you will realize the Corps
has not a clue for
"practically" managing this man made body of
water. Fern Ridge is now old enough
to have created an ecosystem of its own,
a system that needs only consistent
water levels to support what has now
been created. This year the Corps has
spent millions to build an island for
the Caspian Tern to nest on but it is
doubtful if the island will float.
When Islands don't float they ain't islands.
I can't help but remember the
Venita public meeting the Corps Engineers put on five
years ago, the one
with the Bird Colonel who told us they way things were.
At the door, as we
entered, a dutiful Corps employee was passing out brochures
Sandbagging and more sandbabbing makes for a lotta sandbags.
to Fern Ridge Sailors
Oct 11, 07 missive
*Note: Da da da is the Corps of Engineers
A modest proposal for JRC and etc.
So folks out there, I enjoyed
the year despite the truncation thanks to da da
da. There is an opportunity
There is going to be pressure placed on Fern Ridge soon.
is going to be more for conservation of species, species that
homes and the Da da das are going to have to bend to needs that
Da da da will listen because they will benefit. It's up to us to describe
our interests in terms that promote the wetlands above and below the damn.
jewel in the crown, Fern Ridge needs extra attention. We, as a group
need, to work with the BLM and then approach the Da da da.
There is going
to be need for Da Da Da to show concern for turbidity,
erosion control, invasive species and a rational level for
minimum pool by
the da da da.
We need a few more islands on the lake for hydraulics, and bird
We need the wetlands to be further integrated into the lakes and
Some power boat control on shoreline is critical. I have witnessed
20 plus years, the change wrought by the complete ignorance of the
da da da
has created its own can of worms. Much of this was simply management
of resource or lack there of. Invasive species run riot with no concern, fires
run willy nilly and water weed nestles in every nook and cranny.
The year before last I watched the da da da haul several hundred tons of vitrifed
stumps out of the lake to burn.
Humm, that was erosion control rip rap and
shoals, they could have stopped
the melting of Zumwalt park and Signal Island
to say nothing of nesting
platforms; the list is long.
I say again there
is an opportunity to do good and do well by our own lights.
We can do a bit
for the fly way, fisheries and the very health of the lake.
And yes, there
must be a method to purge Fern Ridge in summer with fresh
water. This is
critical for keeping the lake fully alive with hide-aways for
to expose their naughty bits and make little fishies.
Think about it. It
needs some chatter and thought but if we don't you know
da da da is always
out there lurking, lurking.
Gus O. Kahan
message was posted in code, ie.using Da da da for the Corps of Engineers because
this discussion group is monitored by the Da da da.
to Dan Weise, we have documentary evidence of the insight of the beloved institution
that afflicts our lives with fear and tremblling, the Corps. of Engineers.
weekend, pics taken 3/08/08
We all appriciate the efforts in documentation
of this exquisite example of sensitive environmenal engineering by Our Corps of
Engineers. Thanks Corps..
Nature Conservancy - Sustainable Rivers Project
Has caused the
Corps of Engineers to rethink what would not have ever been done by the Corps
alone. We can add to the avalanche of input. The Corps can change into a leaner
meaner thinker but they can't do it alone. The Corps can learn to be flexible.
Corps increasing water releases
from Dexter Dam 4/1/08
Action supports regional
to improve river health https://www.nwp.usace.army.mil/pa/news/shownews.asp?rn=08-043
Portland, Ore. Water levels on the Middle Fork Willamette River are increasing
by six to 18 inches through April 8, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers announced
The action, which is part of the Willamette River Flow Management project
and supports a 2006 agreement with The Nature Conservancy to improve river health,
will affect the Willamette River between Dexter Dam and Eugene. The increased
flows are designed to mimic natural river conditions experienced during this time
of year in the area prior to dam construction in the mid-twentieth century.
Water releases from Dexter Dam will increase gradually to about 4,500 cubic feet
per second by the evening of April 3. On April 5, the Corps will gradually reduce
water releases. Additional pulses of water may be scheduled this spring if river
conditions allow for them.
River users will notice a rise of about 12 inches
at Jasper and 6 inches at Eugene.
We are pleased we have reached a point
in this agreement where we are making changes to our operations in support of
this program, said Col. Tom ODonovan, commander of the Corps
Portland District. We look forward to future such opportunities.
In February 2006, representatives from the Corps Portland and Walla Walla
districts and The Nature Conservancy signed a Memorandum of Understanding agreeing
to work toward regional cooperation and mutual solutions to ecosystem restoration
challenges by working within their respective organizations.
framework of the regional agreement, the partners will evaluate opportunities
to expand their collaboration in the state of Oregon to seek pragmatic solutions
to protect the ecological health of rivers and surrounding natural areas while
continuing to provide services such as flood damage reduction and hydropower generation.
The Willamette River Flow Management project is part of the Sustainable Rivers
Project, a partnership between the Conservancy and the Corps working at eleven
river basins around the nation to restore the natural connection between rivers
and land by modifying the way dams release water. The project aims to better guide
the operation of dams to benefit the environment and native species, while meeting
needs of flood control, recreation and irrigation.
To learn more about the
Sustainable Rivers project, visit http://www.nature.org/success/dams.html. For
additional information on the Willamette River Flow Management project visit http://www.nature.org/wherewework/northamerica/states/oregon/about/art20547.html?src=search
Island, April 3. 2008, square, flat, lonly and cheap, the cost was only $758.759.18
Yes, the deeks are in place and the sounds of oogling terns wafts aloft
plop and it's there.
Note: the Tern will not nest on
a flat space, they will not attract real birds as the island is not mounded to
afford the Tern a view of the water to protect themselves from preditors
Terms love a room with a view; an open unobstructed field of view is paramount
for nesting terns.
Flash from outside the Box
Caspian Tern makes front page news. 4/3/08
If you don't read the Eugene
Weekly then you can retrieve it online.
Reporter Camilla Mortensen did
a great job of cobbling together dispirit sources to deliver a humorous, informative
Yes the Caspian Tern is taking more prizes for the Corps. It's
worth a look, it's a good story for the uninitiated. The Corps moves on with its
shoelaces tied together, shuffling along with a sandpaper rhythm in time to the
sound of a rock crusher. Kaachunka-- Ka-chunk, Kachunk
A few of us sailed
down to the sinking aircraftcarrier to have a look from the water. And yes, its
real, with little tern decoys, and a stereo sound system piped in, all driven
by massive solar arrays, images posted. There were about 2000 sandpipers flying
around the square island; they flew clockwise and banked hard for those 90 degree
turns, all according to military regulation, but no terns in sight.
the oceans rise and the fishes weep we carry on damning and diking spillage of
entropy. Ah, the moment when grow-or-die meets Godzilla.
folks wish more background on the Corps and their nefarious activities elsewhere
& Sailors meeting, the Human Vector
Answers to be Questioned
Action Report April 21/08
Yes folks we did
meet with the Corps of Engineers and they did do us with POWER POINT.
Power Pointed and then Power Pointed some more. I was reeling in a Power Point
Point Presentation I wrote the Operations Manager of the Willamette Valley Project,
Sir: I can't help but express my disappointment in the pro-forma power-point exercise
you orcastrated at the Eugene Yacht Club last evening.
As a group (the sailing
community) we had submitted a series of questions that I was lead to believe would
be addressed by your offices unless they infringe on Homeland Security.
those Questions get lost?
Is the information classified?
Where did the Questions Go?
Why were our concerns not addressed?
I really want to know why there can't be a forthright exploration of issues that
will affect this end of the valley going into the future. We are all invested
in making this human experiment work.
I did get a reply from the Operations Manager, Apr,
Mike - I'm sorry you were dissapointed. I believe we
addressed much of the
information requested of us. Many in the audience expressed
me. It is clear that I cannot satisfy everyone. I look forward
some time on the ground with you. esp
I was one who expressed appreciation for his coming as well. I had no problem
with the messengers, but the messengers brought the wrong message
response to Operations Manager, Apr, 23:
thank you for
I am looking forward to time on the ground with you.
the bowling balls to be juggled are too big and heavy to be artfully managed but
a few people armed with hand outs and a list of issues submitted would have served
Some of the points that would help us and the public at large:
#1.) Update the Fern Ridge website with real links to real information
-- A Public Service Page
a.) Links: http://www.nwd-wc.usace.army.mil/nwp/graphics/gifs/frn.gif
take the rulecurve graphic and plug in the percentage of full pool either on left
or right of existing graph with hash marks on graph: of course these are static
numbers that do not change. It's simple and informative. From that any fool can
extrapolate the rate at which the lake is filling, evaporating or draining.
b.) Include a brief history of the rational for the project, include the
reasons for the rebuild and the functions that are no longer a priority. Include
the recreation priority
c.) Include links to an overview of Fern Ridge Res.
in the scheme of the valley.
Include information on water quality, fisheries,
bird habitat. Express your problem with invasive species.
in conservation practice and cooperation with other entities and projects being
implemented and to be implemented.
e.) include contact information
too, volunteers may want to help beat back the Reeds Canary Grass and Scotch Broom
I will conclude by stating that, in information presented, it was
clear that Fern Ridge is the ugly stepchild of the Willamette Project.
1.) It's on the wrong side of the valley and needs a stand alone policy.
2.) The functions for creation have been eclipsed by much grander water
3.) Several of the reasons for its creation are no longer
viable -- or have been forgotten completely.
4.) The alteration of
volume stored, 1966 changes the dynamic function of the lake proper.
A Rule Curve created in 1938, before the dam was even built, is obsolete with
today's use patterns. Just the plugging in of Tern Island changes your stewardship
mandate and thus the rulecurve.
6.) A statement: Thoughtful resource
use for overall consideration of change of climate and potential influence rests
on us all. I know, I know Dick Cheney is still in denial but the Corps must move
beyond CLIMATE CHANGE DENIAL into a new Congress and President -- full stop.
This nation has frittered away the last 8 years with stacking skeptic on
skeptic to promote consumption -- but the problems did not go away, they have
These are but a few of the issues I had hoped would be discussed.
Again, I am looking forward to getting out on the ground with you soon.
Last: I do understand you are foremost a political animal but policy is policy
and politics is politics, both should be driven by thoughtful overview.
Epilogue: In the ACE presentation there was no mention of water
on the Caspian Tern Fiasco
And from the Right: the Property Rights
Foundation of America, Inc.
"The regulators best serve themselves
by spinning tales of an endangered species, an ecosystem about to collapse. Their
media image is slipping; however, because the good neighborliness facade is eroding.
Even the Corps proud heritage cannot hide the fact that it has become an
arrogant mammoth with little resemblance to its past.
The Corps has become so big, so all-powerful, that it is almost completely unaccountable
to anyone. Our representatives in Congress have lost meaningful oversight
of how well-intentioned laws are managed and enforced.
formula for solving a problem is to regulate something. The Army Corps of Engineers
is about to write a new chapter in their history, by moving the worlds largest
tern colony, then by regulating predation, and finally by helping to diminish
the output of the countrys oldest salmon hatchery".
Starr Contributing Writer
all rights reserved Scari.Org
to your commissioners to discover the best part.
Representative Peter DeFazio (D) (541) 465 6732
Ron Wyden (D) (202) 224-5244
Racing on Fern Ridge Lake
Wyde Lode, MORC # 28866 midget ocean racer
From the Ship's Log of Wyde Lode, sail number 28866, Midget
Ocean Racer, Santana 23 D
Early September decoy nesters
on Tern Island.
Yes the decoys are still out there attracting lots of attention
from Bald Eagles.
Caspian Tern Decoys awaiting
that magic moment
when a real Caspian Tern arrives to relieve their resin
resin headed brethern.
Tern Island in early September of 08. They are great decoys, if there were live
Caspian Terns within a hundred miles they would flock to the spot to see what's
ACE Ziggurat visited by the Spiritual Powers
As of yet there has not been one Caspian Tern
to land on the Ziggurat
called Tern Island.
It is hoped The Corps will get it right next time.