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Rural Economy | Sage Grouse Plans | Steelhead

Rural Oregon was hit harder by the recession than urban areas, and it is still recovering. Central Oregon regional economist Damon Rundberg shares a report showing that even after seven years of uneven economic recovery, Oregon’s rural counties remain below peak employment. And we hear from OPB’s Amanda Peacher about one ranch that’s trying a new economic model.

U.S. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke has recommended changes to the way Oregon and other western states approach protecting the greater sage grouse. This comes after a 60-day review of a comprehensive Obama-era conservation plan. We hear from rancher Tom Sharp, conservationist Dan Morse, and researcher Christian Hagen for some different perspectives on the shift.

Shaun Clements with the Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife tells us about the very real extinction threat that the federally protected sea lion population poses to the Willamette populations of steelhead.

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<p>Sea lions have been eating steelhead and other fish at Willamette Falls in ever greater numbers.</p>

Courtesy of ODFW

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Sea lions have been eating steelhead and other fish at Willamette Falls in ever greater numbers.

Allison Frost, Jenn Chavez, Sage Van Wing