Urban Wildlife Habitat projects fund close-to-home places to play and explore nature. As our urban areas are increasingly expanding and densifying, these grants protect important fish and wildlife habitat within five miles of densely populated areas, creating green refuges that help keep our ecosystems healthy and provide places to enjoy nature right in our backyards.
This month’s featured project is Antoine Peak Etter Ranch. The Spokane County Parks, Recreation and Golf Department used this grant to buy 231 acres to expand the Antoine Peak Conservation Area located on the ancestral land of the Ktunaxa ɁamakɁis and Spokane people. The conservation area preserves critical winter habitat for white-tailed deer, elk, moose, and other animals. The project also extends the conservation area to the City of Spokane Valley’s doorstep and preserves nearly 1 mile of streambank habitat. The site provides an outdoor classroom for nearby schools and a location for trailhead parking and trails. Spokane County contributed more than $1 million in Conservation Futures, equipment, and staff labor.