Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Family Exploration Day

Saturday, June 3rd


 Meadowlark Prairie 

88525 Green Hill Road

The sun is starting to come out to play and summer is approaching fast! What better way to enjoy the sunshine than to have some family fun out in the wetlands?
Discover the West Eugene Wetlands with your family in a day of unstructured, independent exploration!
We provide a backpack of binoculars, field guides, bug net, hand magnifier, and bug boxes, you bring your curiosity and sense of adventure! Drop by anytime between 10am and 2pm to check out your pack. WREN staff and volunteers will be on hand to answer your questions. You can complete the wetland scavenger hunt or just explore on your own, it is up to you!

This event is FREE and families are encouraged!

Contact Us: 541-338-7047

Friday, May 19, 2017

Camas Flower
As spring is in the air and the flowers have started to blossom you may have noticed pretty purple flowers started to sprout. These flowers are called Camas. Camas is a North American plant whose greatest diversity lies in Oregon, which is home to over 65 percent of the named species! Camas plants generally produce flowers between April and June and in Oregon the two most common Camas species found are the Great Cammas and the Common Camas. Although both species look very similar and have some hybridization, they are genetically distinct and both important for their abundance and nutrition they provide to diverse animals.

Indigenous people used the camas bulbs extensively for food. Camas bulbs were a staple of the Kalapuyan diet. After the bulbs were dug up, they were pressed into cakes and baked over several days. These highly nutritious cakes sustained the Kalapuya through the winter season and were also bartered with other tribes as a valuable commodity. Additionally, the Kalapuya burned the prairies seasonally in large part to insure the continuance of the Camas population.

Camas are still used in restoration projects to wetlands to reintroduce a native species. Each year in Oregon, indigenous communities celebrate the Camas harvest to commemorate its role in their cultural history. Find out more about Camas and other plants by joining us on our next wetland wander!

For more information contact WREN at or check out our Facebook @WRENintheWEW

Friday, May 12, 2017

Happy American Wetlands Month!

May is the American Wetlands month! If you are out on a walk and see an area where water covers the soil, or is present either at or near the surface of the soil all year around then you are looking at wetlands! Wetlands vary widely because of regional and local differences in soils, topography, climate, hydrology, water chemistry, vegetation and other factors, including human disturbance.
The wetlands in Eugene cover over 3,000 acres and protect endangered species habitats. In the West Eugene Wetlands, there are over 350 species of rare and unusual plant and animal species. Some of the species are so rare that they can only be found in the Willamette Valley. The West Eugene Wetlands are also unique because they encompass many types of habitat from wetland, to upland prairie and to oak Savannah.
There are many mitigation projects in the wetlands which strive to emulate a natural, self-regulating system that is integrated ecologically with the landscape in which it occurs before any human interference. The term mitigation refers specifically to the creation, enhancement and restoration of wetlands specifically. Under section 404 of the Clean Water Act, wetlands may be legally destroyed only if their losses are resorted which was set in place in order to help maintain a healthy wetland.
Learn more about how you can help restore, explore and learn about the Wetlands through our volunteer opportunities. Contact WREN at or 541-338-7047.

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

May Wetland Wander at Stewart Pond

Tuesday, May 9th
Stewart Pond

Many people have heard the saying, April showers bring May flowers--well, May has arrived and the wildflowers are starting to blossom! This month's walk, on wetland botany, will be led by City of Eugene Wetland Ecologist, Diane Steeck. She will be walking us through the spring wildflowers where we might see some Oregon saxifrage, common camas, and water-plantain buttercup. 
Participants should bring water and dress for the weather. WREN will provide binoculars.

Directions: From West 11th Ave, turn north onto Bertelsen Road. Turn right onto Stewart Road, follow until end and park in gravel parking lot.

WREN Wanders are casual walks through West Eugene Wetlands sites the second Tuesday of every month. These exciting opportunities are FREE to the public and provide observation, education and inspiration in our surrounding natural spaces. 
For more information:
Call: 541-338-7047