Last week Salem was awarded a $322,722 Willamette Mainstem Anchor Habitat grant from the Meyer Memorial Trust and Bonneville Power Administration.
Salem will use the grant to restore 48 acres of native floodplain forested areas along the west edge of the Minto Island Conservation Area. Work on the project started immediately and will continue through 2024.
This is the third phase of ongoing work to restore the 307-acre Minto Island Conservation Area. We're expanding and improving the health of the forested floodplain by reducing invasive species (English ivy, Himalayan blackberry, and reed canary grass) and replanting with native species to increase the diversity of the forest understory.
Anchor habitats are key sections of the Willamette River identified as critical for River health and habitat for fish and wildlife. The City of Salem acquired the 307-acre section of Minto Island in 2013.
Initial work focused on planting on the east side and along the pedestrian trail through the conservation area.
In the second phase, the plan is to remove invasive weeds along the Willamette River Slough. The invasive weeds are choking the Slough, impacting water quality, fish and other wildlife habitat, and recreation.