Meadows in Forests
Mountain meadows support several rare and declining species and are utilized at some point during the year by almost every bird species that breeds in or migrates through the Sierra Nevada. Meadows also perform a vital role as watershed wetlands that store and purify drinking water for millions of Californians. And yet, most meadows are degraded and their ability to provide water storage and habitat functions has been dramatically reduced.
Even though they have been altered, a number of meadows in the Sierra Nevada support populations of declining and threatened riparian meadow bird species, including Sandhill Crane, Swainson's Thrush, Yellow Warbler, and Willow Flycatcher.
New Report (September 2014): Evaluating meadow restoration in the Sierra Nevada using birds and their habitat associations
In 2001, Point Blue began a project monitoring birds across meadow habitat on the Almanor Ranger District of Lassen National Forest. In 2009, we expanded our work to the entire Feather River Watershed in Plumas County, including monitoring a number of sites that have been, or are being proposed for restoration by the Feather River Coordinated Resource Management Group.
The objectives of this project are to collect information on bird distribution in meadows and their response to different restoration techniques and use this information, along with our local knowledge working with partners, to help guide future meadow restoration actions across the Sierra Nevada.
Visit our Sierra Nevada Avian Monitoring Information Network website for more information on study design, methods, results, and conclusions for our work with meadows in forests.