Interested in Doing Research on Forested State Trust Lands?
DNR welcomes cooperation with research partners to conduct research and monitoring in the OESF and tries to support external researchers seeking to implement projects on state trust lands in the OESF. We encourage you to contact us about your ideas and proposals. We can work with you to find an appropriate site, secure permits and connect you with the appropriate DNR staff.
Past research and monitoring projects in the OESF
Silviculture and fish research has been conducted on state trust lands on the western Olympic Peninsula since the 1970’s. After the designation of the OESF in 1992, it intensified and broadened to cover forest and wildlife ecology, geology, and riparian management among other topics. The majority of the past research and monitoring activities are listed in the OESF Research and Monitoring Catalog, published by DNR in 2008.
Ongoing research and monitoring projects in the OESF
The current focus of the OESF is applied research and monitoring into innovative silviculture techniques, riparian restoration, and wildlife habitat development.
Status and trends monitoring of riparian and aquatic habitat in the OESF
- The goal is to characterize the status and trends of riparian and aquatic habitat across the OESF as the 1997 Habitat Conservation Plan is implemented
- Project Coordinator: Teodora Minkova (DNR)
- A study plan was published in 2012
- The implementation of the monitoring started in the summer of 2012
- First establishment report was published in 2013
Young-stand thinning to promote habitat structure
- Through this project DNR tests the effects of four thinning regimes on forest stand structure, habitat quality, plant communities and forest products. Principal investigator: Richard Bigley (DNR)
- Project initiated in 1999 with a grant from the National Biological Service
- First re-measurements currently are being conducted by DNR staff.
Experiment in long-term ecosystem productivity
- Through this experiment DNR and partners seek to evaluate the effects of harvesting and woody-debris retention levels on tree and soil productivity; soil carbon, nutrients, and structure; and plant species diversity.
- Principal investigators: Bernard Bormann (Forest Service Pacific Northwest Research Station), Peter Homann (Western Washington University), Richard Bigley (DNR)
- Project initiated in 1995 with funding provided by PNW, Western Washington University, and DNR
- Pre- and post-harvest measurements completed; vegetation re-measurements were conducted in 2012; woody debris and soil re-measurements are pending.
Hardwood conversion monitoring in riparian areas
- The project compares the effectiveness of different silvicultural practices to convert forest stands with predominantly deciduous species into stands with predominantly conifer species.
- Principal investigator: Richard Bigley (DNR) and Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife
- Project initiated in 1999 with a grant from US Fish and Wildlife Service
- Second (final) re-measurement is nearly complete.
Literature database on natural disturbance regimes on the western Olympic Peninsula
- Through this project, DNR’s partner identifies and evaluates existing sources of information on natural disturbance regimes on the western Olympic
- Peninsula and develops an electronic literature database.
- Principal investigators: Steven Wondzell and Peter Bisson (Forest Service Pacific Northwest Research Station)
- Duration: April 2010 to May 2011
- Funding was provided by Forest Service Pacific Northwest Research Station
- The database is available upon request. See its description here.
Providing long-term hydrological and meteorological data for the Olympic Experimental State Forest