Farms to wetland to improve UK water quality
Herald and News, May 1, 2021 This week in Klamath Basin History
25 years ago - May 2, 1996
More than 3,000
acres of valuable farmland beside Upper Klamath Lake would
be converted to marsh and wetlands under an agreement
announced Wednesday before the Klamath County Commissioners.
project coordinator for the Nature Conservancy, said a
general agreement has been reached for the purchase of
Tulana Farms, a 4700-acre tract at the mouth of the
Williamson River. Most of the land would be flooded to
create marsh and wetlands while about 1,700 acres would
remain in agricultural production.
marshes and wetlands on Tulana Farms is described by some as
the most significant step that could be taken to improve
water quality in Upper Klamath Lake.
Dave Henzel expressed extreme disappointment in the project.
The parcel along the Williamson River was once owned by a
partnership that included Henzelís father, Ben Henzel, and
uncle, Dick Henzel, as well as Dave and Dan Liskey and all
The land was
reclaimed in the 1920s by the California Oregon Power Co.
which raised a long series of dikes along the lakeshore and
banks of the river.
believe the elimination of the wetlands disrupted the
natural process for reducing nutrients in the water flowing
into Upper Klamath Lake. Those nutrients, unchecked, have
contributed to the growth of blue-green algae in the lake.
A similar marsh
restoration project is under way on the former 3,200-acre
Wood River Ranch, which lies at the mouth of the Wood River
on Agency Lake, only a few miles from Tulana Farms.
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