Lomatium Prarie was protected through the purchase of a conservation easement from the Erickson family in 2008.
The landowners family grew up on the land, and it was her mother's strong desire to keep it intact for future generations to enjoy. “It’s Mom’s dream that we are realizing,” shares the landowner. "Part of that vision is to keep the land as natural as we can”
Paula Erickson, 2008
Meet Coyote Oaks
The Lomatium Praire Conservation Easement provides prime habitat—the right combination of soils, moisture, sunlight, drainage—for certain rare, threatened, and endangered plant species. During a single site inventory, more than 260 plant species, 27 birds, 9 species of butterflies, 5 species of dragon/damselflies, and 2 species of amphibians and reptiles were recorded. This one-time snapshot of a landscape that changes seasonally, especially with respect to the bird species paints an incredible portrait of the importance of dynamic wetland and prairie habitats in our region.
Recovering Bradshaw’s Lomatium
The high-quality wetland and oak habitat on the property makes for exceptional ecological diversity. One of the most exciting finds in this area is the presence of a rare plant, Bradshaw’s desertparsley (Lomatium bradshawii). Lomatium bradshawii was believed to be extinct until a graduate student at the University of Oregon rediscovered it while jogging. Since its rediscovery in 1979, extensive research has been done to understand the ecology of this species. The majority of the remaining populations in Oregon are within a 10-mile radius of the city of Eugene. In 2020, Bradshaw’s Lomatium was officially delisted as an Endangered Plant species due to recovery. Conservation easements like Lomatium Prairie, are an integral part of that success story.
Land Protection in the Long Tom Watershed
This land is part of a 1,000+ acre complex of private and publicly lands managed lands on lower Coyote Creek, below the Fern Ridge Dam. We feel very gratified to have helped the Erickson’s protect this special place and are now working with other landowners and conservation partners to secure similar easements in the neighborhood.
The Long Tom Watershed Council, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Bureau of Land Management, and Army Corps of Engineers all have a presence in the neighborhood, working towards a vision for a 1,200-acre natural area surrounding the property. When you get to that scale, you can amplify the benefits of conserving a single parcel. Partners helped identify the Coyote Oaks property as a conservation priority due to its extremely high-quality wetland and oak habitat.