Tribal Focused Restoration

Types of Cordage on display

Types of Cordage on Display

Tribal Focused Restoration

Since time immemorial, Native peoples have been stewards of the Willamette River Valley. Historically, native peoples traveled to Portland Harbor from near and distant places to access the natural abundance in this area. Some of their descendants are now affiliated with the Five Tribes on the Trustee Council and have maintained ties to the natural resources of the Willamette River. For example, Tribal members use or desire to use these resources for sustenance, medicine, traditional/cultural activities, and teaching opportunities.

Contamination, however, has reduced the availability and quality of resources. The Five Tribes of the Trustee Council are working to understand the impacts of contamination on Tribal relationships with the resources at Portland Harbor and to restore those lost resources and connections.

Salmon, sturgeon, and Pacific lamprey in particular are culturally significant to the Five Tribes. The benefits to salmon and sturgeon of restoring aquatic-related habitats are well documented, and are expected to result from the Trustee Council's ecological restoration projects. The Trustee Council's ecological restoration projects also incorporate the use of Tribally significant native plants such as camas, wapato, and sweetgrass. In contrast, data on lamprey habitat needs and preferences are insufficient to understand the benefits of ecological restoration projects to lamprey. Therefore, Tribal representatives developed a plan to monitor the effects of ecological restoration projects on lamprey over 20 years.