The Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument was established in June 2000 under the Antiquities Act. It was singled out as "an ecological wonder" with "spectacular biological diversity" in recognition of its role as a biological crossroads between the Cascade, Klamath/Siskiyou, and Great Basin ecoregions. It is the nation's first National Monument established specifically to protect biodiversity. The Monument is managed by the Medford District of the Bureau of Land Management as part of the National Landscape Conservation System.
The updated IBA map extends outside of the monument on the east to take in almost all of the Jenny Creek watershed, and to the west to take in the Sampson Rim of Dead Indian Plateau. Pending: this IBA may eventually be extended into California.
Two hundred and two bird species have been reported from the Monument. In addition to its importance to particular species of concern, including Northern Spotted Owl, Great Gray Owl, Peregrine Falcon, and Willow Flycatcher, the Monument is remarkable for the array of birds that are near their range limit in the area. This list includes northern limits of Blue-gray Gnatcatcher and California Towhee, western limits of Canyon Wren and Black-billed Magpie, eastern limits of Hermit Warbler and Band-tailed Pigeon, and southern limits of Ruffed Grouse and Rufous Hummingbird. The tremendous array of habitats in the Monument provide for great diversity in vertebrate fauna (Pepper Trail, Birds of the Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument).
The entire area has experienced a history of intensive grazing, as well as commercial logging and road-building in the northern sections. Since designation as a National Monument in 2000, commercial logging has been forbidden and some roads have been closed. In 2009, over 24,000 acres in the southern portion of the Monument were Congressionally-designated as the Soda Mountain Wilderness Area. At the same time, the Omnibus Public Land Management Act enabled buy-outs of grazing permits from willing sellers within the monument area. Today over 95% of the area is free of livestock grazing, though cattle ?trespass? remains a concern. Rogue Valley Audubon, working with an extensive coalition of local groups, is closely involved in monitoring the Bureau of Land Management?s activities in the monument and working with BLM to protect this important area. Ongoing actions include work to i.d. opportunities to acquire private in-holdings within the monument boundaries from willing sellers, and advocating for expansion of the monument in adjacent public lands to maximize the ecological connectivity provided by this biological crossroads.