This project is designed to restore landscape mosaics of both old Forest structure and Open Canopy structure within the footprint of the 2013 Rim Fire. This project occurs in the Tuolumne Watershed, a key watershed within California. The Tuolumne Watershed is a critical supplier of water to the Central Valley and the Bay Area, and restored forests will provide both water supply and water quality benefits. Restoring mixed conifer forests will reduce erosion, increase structure and thermal cover for wildlife species, and lower water temperature in riparian areas, while simultaneously increasing carbon sequestration.
The importance of this project:
This project will increase resiliency for wildlife and plant species by restoring a healthy landscape mosaic to the footprint of the 2013 Rim Fire. This landscape mosaic will enhance connectivity across the landscape, with Old Forest units and Open Canopy units creating links and nodes across the Tuolumne Watershed. These forest types will also provide thermal cover, structure, and habitat for native species such as the Tuolumne herd of mule deer and will filter precipitation and control runoff, ensuring the continued existence of this landscape.
This project will also support wildlife restoring the Tuolumne Watershed and increasing its resiliency to biotic and abiotic factors such as fire, disease, drought, and insect outbreak. This landscape mosaic is comprised of heterogeneous forest types with horizontal and vertical diversity, providing a suite of habitat conditions for native species. In addition, the restored conifer forests will filter precipitation, preventing overloading of sediment and nutrients in the Tuolumne River, a key source of water for the Central Valley.
Different tree species will be panted including Douglas Fir, Incense Cedar, Ponderosa Pine & Sugar Pine
Trees will be planted
Impacts & Benefits:
The 2013 Rim Fire burned 257,314 acres of grass-oak woodlands, chaparral, Ponderosa Pine, and mixed conifer forests over the course of three months, with more than 90,000 acres being burned at a high severity. In all, 98% of the burn area was within the Tuolumne Watershed. To address this, the Yosemite Stanislaus Solutions (YSS) forest collaborative negotiated a common-ground reforestation plan which was adopted by the Stanislaus National Forest. This reforestation plan was designed to restore a forest mosaic to the landscape, creating habitat, protecting water quality, and ensuring the continued existence of a vibrant and thriving landscape.