The Yuba Watershed Institute (YWI) is pleased to announce that we have hired two new staff members to assist with our forest stewardship planning and implementation projects. These positions will largely be supported by three grants from the Sierra Nevada Conservancy’s Proposition 1/Proposition 68 Forest Health grant program that were awarded to the YWI this past March.
Cameron Musser has been brought on as our new Forest Health Project Manager. With a B.S. in Genetics and Plant Biology from U.C. Berkeley, a M.F.S. from Yale’s School of the Environment, and experience in Sierra Nevada industrial forestry, Cameron brings extensive forestry knowledge to the YWI.
We have also hired Corinne Munger as our Biologist/Environmental Planner. Corinne has a B.A. in Environmental Studies from U.C. Santa Cruz, a M.S. in Biology from the University of Alaska, Fairbanks, and 17 years of experience as a biologist and environmental planner. Having served on the the YWI board of directors since 2013, Corinne is deeply invested in carrying out the YWI’s mission through her contributions to our planning efforts.
It has been a busy start for our new staffers as the ‘Inimim Forest Restoration Project‘s implementation phase for 2021 gets underway. After she was acquainted with the ‘Inimim Forest, Cameron made her treatment method and prescription recommendations for 160 acres of fuels reduction within the ‘Inimim Forest’s Big Parcel and 70 acres of road-side shaded fuel breaks throughout different U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM) parcels on the San Juan Ridge.
In late October, the YWI team released a request for proposals that lays out the project details, environmental compliance requirements, and general conditions for potential contractors. Pink, blue, and orange flagging is hanging throughout the ‘Inimim Forest — ready to show contractors the project boundaries, important water features, and vegetation that has been selected to remain untouched. The stage is set for contracts to be awarded at the beginning of December for work beginning after the holidays in January.
Other happenings around the ‘Inimim Forest include burn pile preparation at the Shields Camp parcel and the upcoming annual Fungus Foray. The ‘Inimim Forest has been selected to host one of The Nature Conservancy’s Prescribed Fire TRaining EXchange (TREX) events for the upcoming spring. In collaboration with the Yuba Forest Network and Open Canopy LLC, this training event will tentatively take place in April on the Shields Camp and Bear Tree Parcels of the ‘Inimim Forest, where there is a high density of burn piles from previous fuels reduction treatments.
Stay tuned for more information about the scaled-back, COVID-compliant version of the Fungus Foray that we will be hosting in mid-December.