Oh, Deer!

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Rock Creek has been getting its fair share of visitors these days!  We were joined last week by some Korean exchange students who live at Marylhurst University; they were a group of 10 or so and wanted to engage in some community service while practicing their English.  Clackamas students did a stellar job of including the exchange students in their restoration work and talking with the students about their school life and program.  Students caged native plants together to protect them from beaver and other animals.

This week, Clackamas students worked on both sides of the creek to continue caging native plants and pull invasive Himalayan blackberry.  We set up our SOLV wildlife camera to take photos of wildlife that might pass through the riparian corridor while we were away from the site and we got some great photos of deer.  Its great to see so many different types of animal tracks on the banks of Rock Creek; this means the waterway is relatively healthy and usable for all different types of species.

Some students also journaled on site about their experiences at Rock Creek; see what they had to say:

Today I learned more than the last time I came out.  I learned about beaver caging and I saw how the trees that we planted last time we came have grown.  What we have done here as a while group/team is incredible.  I have never though that our river – watershed is really important that we can’t survive with out it.  Now that I came out here, I changed my mind.  This stream is beautiful and amazing.  More people need to come out here and see how much we as a community have done.  They need to come out and help us help themselves and ourselves.  Being out here has had a positive impact in my life.  It opened my eyes to the world I never knew.  Thank you Mr. Shroufe and SOLV.

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I never realized how much progress one person can make in their community with such little effort.  Today I worked on removing invasive plants and protecting natives.  The work I did took absolutely no skill; literally anyone can do this.  It only took two hours with less than 30 students and a lot of progress has been made.  However, there is still a lot of work to be done in this watershed.  The work done here is effortless and impactful.  We need more people out here making a difference in their community.  Protecting native plants is important in many ways.  Without protection, the plants and trees would be killed by animals in the environment.  When grown, the trees provide shade for the creek, allowing sensitive species to live.

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