Scotch Broom, Armenian Blackberry, Thistle, Celandine, you name it… we removed it. Timber Lake Job Corps showed up ready to work at Currin Creek last week. Students removed Scotch Broom the size of trees, blackberry roots that were encroaching on our stream, thistle that would have spread otherwise, and celandine in front of Estacada High School.
Scotch Broom is an invasive shrub often found in degraded areas. It is tough competition for native trees and shrubs, especially in forestry areas which have recently been logged. It grows very quickly and vigorously and can outcompete Doug Firs and other native trees. It can withstand intense weather and stays green year long and spreads its seed in the spring when it produces a yellow flower. TLJC students removed all the Scotch Broom in the visible vicinity before that yellow flower could form- preventing the spread of the awful invasive. Awesome work!
Lastly, we headed to the front of Estacada High School to find some macroinvertebrates in the Wade Creek. We found Small Minnow Mayflies, a really big Golden Stonefly, and aquatic earthworms. We totaled our Pollution Tolerance Index and found our number to be 7, which indicates poor water quality. We discussed how the season might have something to do with that number being low, and that stoneflies are fairly sensitive- indicating the water may not be all that bad. Students helped pack everything up, set the macroinvertebrates free into the creek, and headed back to campus. It is always incredible to see how much work TLJC can get done in one outing. We are so grateful for your help!!