Density Management Study

The Density Management Study (DMS) was launched in 1994 by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) to develop and test options for early successional stand management to meet Northwest Forest Plan objectives in western Oregon. The DMS is a collaborative effort between the BLM, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), Oregon State University (OSU), the U.S. Forest Service Pacific Northwest Research Station (PNW), and Region Six of the U.S. Forest Service. The DMS evaluates various approaches to managing 40 to 70-year-old forest stands on low elevation sites in western Oregon to create and maintain late-successional characteristics. The study is comprised of three treatment types: initial thinning, riparian buffer widths, and rethinning.

Location of DMS sites
[Photo: BLM]

Objectives of the study include:

  • To assess how the different management treatments affect important habitat characteristics such as the spatial distribution of trees, shrubs, herbs, and dead wood.
  • To determine the effects of the treatment on specific plants and animals.
  • To evaluate how density management and various riparian buffer widths affect aquatic and riparian resources.
  • To improve methods for animal and plant monitoring, implement new recommendations, and share results with land managers and policy makers.

Results from the DMS will help land managers and policymakers develop management plans that balance sustainable timber production with maintenance of water quality, biodiversity, and ecosystem services such as recreational opportunities.

Click here to access the Density Management Study project website.

Partner Spotlight

Collaborators of the Density Management Study

The NBII Program is administered by the Biological Informatics Program of the U.S. Geological Survey
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