2002 Cooperators of the Year: Cliff and Gay Hall

In 1999, Cliff and Gay Hall bought a sheep farm in Kings Valley in northwestern Benton County with the hope of not only restoring the 1898 farm house, but also to manage the 80 acres with the goal of enhancing wildlife populations and diversity while preserving the pastoral beauty of the property.  With the help of the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, U.S. Fish and Wildlife, U.S.D.A. Natural Resources Conservation Service and the Benton Soil and Water Conservation District, and a strong dose of enthusiasm on their part, the Halls are beginning to see the results of their efforts.  Last summer, the ODFW sculpted the landscape to create and enhance three wetland areas.

The northern wetland had various species of migrating waterfowl passing through this spring and has attracted a nesting pair of geese.
The northern wetland had various species of migrating waterfowl passing through this spring and has attracted a nesting pair of geese.

Through financial assistance from the Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (CREP) and with the help of friends and neighbors, Cliff planted 8,000 trees in the degraded riparian areas along the east side of the Luckiamute River and on both sides of Maxfield Creek.

Cliff Hall staking tree tubes along the newly planted riparian area.
Cliff Hall staking tree tubes along the newly planted riparian area.

In addition to the riparian areas, Oregon white oak trees have been planted to expand an oak savannah area on the property. Cliff has developed a conservation farm plan with help from the Benton SWCD to address other resource management objectives.

Sturdy fences were installed outside of the planted riparian area to keep cattle from accessing the creek.
Sturdy fences were installed outside of the planted riparian area to keep cattle from accessing the creek.
A recycled 89’ railroad flatcar was installed over Maxfield Creek for access to the southern pasture.
A recycled ’89 railroad flatcar was installed over Maxfield Creek for access to the southern pasture.
A southern pond was excavated and trees and shrubs were planted around the perimeter and protected by tree tubes.
A southern pond was excavated and trees and shrubs were planted around the perimeter and protected by tree tubes.