BLM & Mendocino Blacktail Assoc Working to Improve Deer Habitat

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This is a press release from the Bureau of Land Management’s Northern California District:

Mendocino County Blacktail Assoc. begins habitat improvement project on BLM managed public lands


COVELO, Calif. –


The Mendocino County Blacktail Association, a wildlife habitat conservation group, has begun work to improve conditions for blacktail deer on public lands managed by the Bureau of Land Management near Covelo, in Mendocino County.


The Mendocino County work is an expansion of an ongoing project involving MCBA and the BLM Arcata Field Office. The project began in the King Range National Conservation Area and is now moving onto Eel River watershed public lands where deer forage quality has declined and is less palatable for deer.


Project workers will “top,” or cut off the upper portions of chemise, manzanita and other shrubs to stimulate new growth more beneficial to deer. The project aims to complete work on 200 acres by the end of this year and up to 500 acres per year for the duration of the 10-year project.


“We are proud that this partnership is contributing to the improvement and sustainability of the Eel River Watershed and habitat improvement,” said BLM Arcata Field Manager Molly Brown. “It is great to work with partners that are so enthusiastic about restoration of wildlife habitat.”


Chemise Knob, a Middle Fork Eel River access point off state Route 162, is the first Mendocino County treatment area. Future project sites are known locally at Willis Ridge, Brushy Mountain Timbered Ridge and Dingman Ridge.


The BLM analyzed the project in an environmental assessment completed earlier this year.


The MCBA is a citizen group dedicated to improving the habitat for blacktail deer. They hold fundraising events and apply for grants to complete projects on publicly accessible land where its membership enjoys the great outdoors.



  • Really? The Friggin blacktails in my neighborhood are thick and fat. They love almost anything in the landscape.

  • Just a couple questions. Where will the tops be left? Have they assessed the fire hazards associated? Who will be liable if the leftover slash catches fire?

  • Didn’t know black lives matter cared so much about deer.

    • Hahaha they have the same acronym. That’s almost a joke! Typically, a joke will also have some sort of punchline, or an ironic thematic contradiction. The idea of a civil rights group being in favor of blackmail deer conservation is maybe unexpected, but not ironic.

      Better luck next time! Joke Police out!

  • I applaud the work but the best thing that could be done for Blacktails is open a lion season.

  • Many people do not like Chamise due to its flammability, same with Manzanita.
    Time to stock up on some popcorn, this thread might get hot.

  • Come on Fish and Game

    Well to start off they need to make it like how we got to pay a arm and a leg to go hunt in other states like $600 for a deer tag and $300 for a license like we do in other states or draw a state tag like us all. It’s BS that our state let’out of state people come hunt and don’t have to pay like we do, when we go to there states!!!!!!Come on fish and game do ur job instead of doing the cops jobs chasing these grows that are on private property, that the cops can get really easy!!!! Or are you just getting lazy like these cops around here driving around in circles, like when you call in a burglar in ur nabor hood, and then when you wait for them for 2 hours and they show up and drive up a road 200 ft and back, then leave town and you call back the cops and ask what’s going on, and they say they handled it, but then an hour later a house gets broken into and two cars WTF you cops and if you fish and game cops act like cops, well where the heck were you too!!!!

  • I live near Chamise Nob. Great idea, hope they chip or burn brush so its not a fire hazard. Would love to see a control burn there. Keep up good work.

    • I think they want to prune them back, like rose bushes, so they grow stronger and thicker.
      I hope your version is the right one though.
      If not, then we can consider this article to be a heads up warning for what area is on deck for the next fire season.

  • Make the habitat just like Shelter Cove and you will have more deer than you could ever imagine.

    • Yep. You can literally club them in the cove for dinner. I got 6’ away from this buck. There thicker than theives out here….. and to the commenter about lion season Open? Yep! Mountain lions are protected and now those too are out of hand due to deer explosion population.

  • the misadventures of bunjee

    More habitat? Because there aren’t enough dead deer on the sides of the highways as it is? Deer adapt to a lot of environments, if mine and neighbors lawns are any indication.

  • So they are trying recreate a clearcut?

    Heres and idea, do some logging…

    • I suppose they could make lumber for doll house’s out of Chamise and manzanita brush. They are shrubs not trees.
      Maybe Google Image before committing, only about 10% of Chamise Nob has trees on it. The rest is impacted with brush you have to crawl on knees to get around.

  • Can’t the deer top the shrubs themselves? I’m serious. That’s what they eat. Regarding lions, I’m sure renegade dogs kill more deer than any other animal, 2 or 4 legged.

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