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Deschutes Canyon Currents
July 2022
Oregon Sunshine at Crooked River Ranch | Tom Iraci
We work to preserve and restore the wild landscapes of the middle Deschutes and lower Crooked Rivers and lower Whychus Creek through advocacy, stewardship and education.
           -FANs of the Deschutes Canyon Area's Mission Statement

NEW!! Native Plant Landscaping Tour at The Mariposa
By Marilynne Keyser, FANs Native Plant Coordinator

A wonderful follow-up to our June 18th Lens on Learning program, Identifying and Using Native Plants, is a visit to my home on 14 acres near the rim of the middle Deschutes River canyon on the west side of Crooked River Ranch. Our house was built on solid basalt with a minimum of dry, gravelly soil immediately around it. We also have talus slopes and sandy north facing slopes west and south of the house.

We wanted to create a native landscape dominated by shrubs and bunchgrasses that did not need to be watered. John created numerous rock gardens where, for some, we brought in soil, for others, we worked with what we had. Over the last twenty years, we have come to love this land and the native plants, animals and birds that share it with us. We look forward to sharing it with you.

I will have a list of the native plants on our property for each of you, with a notation for those we planted over the years, and the soil, sun/shade and moisture conditions under which each thrives. 

I prefer not to include my address in this article.  So, either call or text me at          541-923-0558 if you would like to join John and I on Thursday, July 7th between 10:00am and 2:00pm.

Redmond Proficiency Academy Students
become Stewards of the Middle Deschutes River

By Robin Galloway, FANs President


The Friends and Neighbors of the Deschutes Canyon Area (FANs) provided two days of educational field trips for students from the Redmond Proficiency Academy in Redmond on June 13-14. High school students from the classes of Julie O’Neill and Jonathan Moore chose an elective course titled The Call of Nature, with a focus on nature as therapy for physical and mental health.

Students performed community service by pulling invasive weeds along the middle Deschutes River at Borden Beck Wildlife Preserve, a property managed by the Redmond Area Park and Recreation District. FANs member Marilynne Keyser gave them each a copy of a new book she co-authored, A Guide to Common Weeds of the Deschutes Canyon Area. After explaining why controlling weeds was critical to the success of native plants, animals and fish, she challenged the students to clear out the invasive Flannel Mullein along the trail. The group grabbed bags and tools and set off along the trail. Within an hour or two, they had collected 20 large bags of weeds, predominately Mullein.

After lunch, the group was introduced to the excitement of birdwatching.  Each of the students was provide their own binoculars to begin to “really” see birds.  Luckily, several of the students were already avid birders along with Vinnie, their own student bird expert.  Within an hour, 19 species of birds were identified and reported to Cornell Lab of Ornithology by Marilynne through the eBird app.

Crooked River Ranch was the base for the students’ second day. FANs hike leaders Eric Hanson and Wendy Fink led them on a hike where they learned about local geology and the history of the area. Trail first aid, Leave No Trace ethics and quiet time to enjoy nature were also part of the experience.

At the end of the second day, students were asked to reflect on what they had learned, and would take with them as memories from the experiences. One young man said that he wants to get outside more to hike, and get his family involved in camping. When hearing that comment a FANs leader smiled, and quietly said, “Mission accomplished!"

Hiking with FANs
By Ilene Smith, Newsletter Editor


Our spring hiking season with FANs has come to an end. Some of the crowd pleaser hikes were Lone Pine Trail, Gray Butte, Evidence of the Past, Lookout Mountain and Scout Camp trail.

We hope to see more of you on hikes soon to be scheduled for this fall. Hiking with our organization not only provides a great immersion experience with nature, but also a chance to meet new people. Our hike team leaders are CPR and first aid trained and offer you an incredible escape from the hustle and bustle of your normal routine.

There are so many benefits of group hiking they are almost too numerous to list.  However, one of the many perks of hiking with FANs is our team leaders share their knowledge of plants, birds, geology, and Native American and pioneer history during our hikes.  Other advantages include keeping your mind sharp, increasing your happiness and exercising your body. Research suggests there are many benefits related to physical and mental health. In fact, a growing scientific field called ecotherapy, indicates that even a few minutes of hiking in a natural environment has significant health benefits.

So come with us on an adventure and simultaneously boost your mind, calm your body, improve your health and meet new friends!

Below are some photos from our spring hikes.  Please click here  in September to register for one of our fall hikes.  Most hikes are limited to 8 people and they fill up fast!

 Scout Camp trail leader Marilynne Keyser (Left)

Lone Pine trail leader Eric Hanson (left)

Trail leader Jeff Scheetz on the left
Evidence of the Past trail 

Ilene Smith on the left and my daughter Danielle on the right
Scout Camp trail


Native Plants of the Deschutes Canyon Area
by Marilynne Keyser, FANs Native Plant Coordinator

What a delight to have the isolation of the past two Covid years behind us! Rather than discuss several individual native plants this month, I thought I share current news on our native plant program.

I have been out on the trail more than any other year in my 12 years as a FANs member, starting with Gray Butte in February and ending with Scout Camp in June, a total of ten wildflower hikes!  It was great to find so many native plant enthusiasts among FANs members. Due to the very cool, wet spring, the blooms were two to three weeks late, making the most productive hikes in June.

All those hikes allowed me to take some great photos to include in my expanded second edition of Guide to the Common Native Plants of the Deschutes Canyon Area. FANs excellent graphic designer, who also designed FANs first native plant book in 2017 and the new weed book which was released in May, is working on the layout of the new, expanded native plant guide book now. It will be available later this summer.

Here are some of things you will find in the 2022 Guide to the Native Plants of the Deschutes Canyon Area:

•    Over 130 detailed species descriptions with two photos of each plant

•    Species organized in taxonomical order by families, eg. Asteraceae (Sunflower       Family) with over 30 species described

•    List of botanical terms used in the book

•    Drawings depicting parts of a flower and parts of a grass

•    Resources to help you expand your knowledge of native plants

The field guide will have a retail price of $20, but will be sold to FANs members for $15.  One of many good reasons to join Friends and Neighbors of the Deschutes Canyon Area!  Don't delay, get your copy here on our website.

Beware the infamous Goathead!!
Weed of the Month
Puncture Vine: aka Goathead
By Penny Radtke, FANs Invasive Weed Consultant

Puncture Vine, (Tribulus terrestris), is a tap-rooted annual which should be appearing soon. The stems radiate from the crown, trailing along the ground, forming flat patches although they may grow more upright in shade or among taller plants. Leaves are opposite, hairy (in the early stages) and divided into four to eight opposite pairs of leaflets. The flowers are small, with five lemon-yellow petals. A week after each flower blooms, it develops seed pods that easily fall apart into four or five single-seeded nutlets, resembling the head of a goat. These tack-like structures have sharp spines that can puncture bicycle tires and injure animals.  I’ve been told a good way to find them is to walk around your property barefooted!  For smaller infestations, the best control is removing the whole plant, including the taproot, before seeds form.  A pre-emergent spray may help with larger infestations.  Contact county weed control or a certified sprayer for assistance.  Puncture Vine is a Class B weed in Jefferson County, meaning it is of high concern but fairly common in our area.
If you would like help sorting out the weeds and native plants on your property, contact me at

         Puncture vine flower

Puncture vine 

Puncture vine

Update!  The Golden Eaglet has Fledged
by Ilene Smith, Newsletter Editor

This is a follow-up to the article discussing Golden Eagle monitoring in the May issue of the Deschutes Canyon Currents newsletter.

This is the final update as the golden eagle chick (eaglet) that I am monitoring is now in the fledgling stage and heading toward the final stage of adulthood. The fledgling stage is when the eaglet flies from the nest for the first time. Golden eaglets leave the nest after 10 to 12 weeks and, contrary to popular belief, the adults do not push the eaglet out of the nest. The eaglet is anxious to test his/her wings and the adults try to coax the fledgling out of the nest by placing food in different locations. I was fortunate to witness this when the adult dropped food on a ledge near the nest and the eaglet flew to that ledge.

The eaglet will stay close to the adults for another 1 to 2 months. This additional time with the parents helps the eaglet hone his/her flying and feeding skills. Eaglets will hunt for another 5 months with their parents.

Golden eagles reach sexual maturity after 4 years and choose a mate for life. Golden eagles often return year after year to the same nesting area.  Hopefully, I’ll be monitoring this golden eagle pair again next year. Below are some photos I took through a spotting scope of the eaglet following the first flight from the nest.

To read further on Golden Eagles being monitored in the Deschutes canyon area click on the Madras Pioneer .

Eaglet on the left 2 weeks before fledging the nest

Eaglet fledged to another ledge near the nest

Adult eagle on left| fledgling eaglet on right


Your Membership Keeps FANs Strong

FANs has remained strong and focused through the Covid-19 pandemic, and we are excited to move forward in 2022 and beyond. Your membership, participation and financial donations are vital to the health and success of FANs…. your local conservation organization!

FANs membership begins at $10 per person per year.  We are grateful to so many FANs members that generously give more.

To renew, print this form and mail it with your check to:

FANs,  P.O. Box 2127,  Terrebonne, OR 97760

Or visit our website,, to donate online and complete an online membership form.  

If you have membership questions, please contact Sue Combs, FANs Treasurer and Database Manager, at 541-604-0280 or

Support FANs with
Tru Earth
Eco-Friendly Products


FANs members can now order from Tru Earth, a provider of ECO-FRIENDLY LAUNDRY DETERGENT STRIPS.... and MORE.  If you are interested in reducing plastic waste and using earth-healthy products, check out Tru Earth supporting FANs website.

FANs receives 20% of the retail sales price whenever you order from this website.  You can access it by clicking on the Get Involved and Support FANs Through Purchases tabs at


Friends and Neighbors of the Deschutes Canyon Area
is proud to be a part of

Friends Grassroots Network


Board Meeting Schedule

Friends and Neighbors of the Deschutes Canyon Area board meetings are usually held on the second Sunday each month.  Copies of the agenda are available before the meetings.  Public comments are welcome at the end of board meetings.

Our next board meeting will be July 10, 2022, at 5:00 p.m. at the home of Marilynne and John Keyser.  Please email if you would like to attend this board meeting.


FANs Board of Directors
Our all-volunteer Board of Directors focuses on our mission: Preserve and restore the wild landscapes of the middle Deschutes and lower Crooked Rivers and lower Whychus Creek through advocacy, stewardship and education. 

You can read more about our Board of Directors and Leadership Team by clicking here.


FANs is a 501-C-3 Nonprofit Organization  EIN #45-4986167

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Our mailing address is:
Friends and Neighbors of the Deschutes Canyon Area
PO Box 2127
Terrebonne, OR 97760
541.771.FANS (3267)

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Friends and Neighbors of the Deschutes Canyon Area · PO Box 2127 · Terrebonne, OR 97760-2127 · USA

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