2 restoration projects slated for Wallowa-Whitman forest

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PENDLETON, Ore. — The Wallowa-Whitman National Forest has signed off on a pair of restoration projects to thin overly dense and beetle-killed tree stands.

The East Oregonian reports the Split Rail Project will target mostly lodgepole pine within a 250-acre area. Dead and beetle-infested trees will be removed and replaced with ponderosa pine and Western larch seedlings.

The Sparta Vegetation Management Project, meanwhile, will encompass 17,951 acres in the Whitman Ranger District near Eagle Creek. It includes 4,196 acres of commercial thinning and 1,362 acres of noncommercial treatment, such as prescribed burning.

Jeff Tomac, Whitman District Ranger, said both projects will contribute to a healthier, more vibrant forest.