Jay Gordon’s farm is an ecosystem. It not only nurtures about 450 acres of grass and alfalfa for feed and hay, 175 acres of corn, 20 acres of barley, a half acre of pumpkins and pasture – it also nourishes a menagerie of wildlife and the fish that use a three-quarter mile stretch of the Chehalis River that bisects the southern edge of his property.
To help protect salmon and wildlife on his land, Gordon has embarked on enhancement projects, including an easement on wet pasture with the Trumpeter Swan Society. To keep cows from despoiling the Chehalis River, he fenced off the entire riverbank in 2008 and again in 2009 after it was damaged during that year’s flood. The fence prevents cows from getting any closer than 50 to 150 feet from the river’s edge, which in turn protects water quality and salmon habitat.