Farmland Preservation protects valuable farmland and habitat for recreationally important animals, like salmon, birds, deer, and elk. These projects allow families to continue farming the land they have worked on for generations, and provide Washingtonians with healthy local food and a diverse economy. WWRP is the only source of farmland preservation funding in the state budget.
The Okanogan Land Trust will use this grant to buy a voluntary land preservation agreement for 2,691 acres of the Ellis Barnes Livestock Company’s rangeland, which will restrict future development. The land includes wetlands that provide habitat for waterfowl, cavity-nesting ducks, and Chinook salmon. The Barnes family began assembling this ranch in 1924 and incorporated it in 1929, making it one of the oldest in Okanogan County. This family-owned cow-calf operation is one of a handful still operating in the northern Okanogan Valley and contributes significantly to the local agricultural economy. Okanogan Land Trust will contribute $729,364 in a federal appropriation and donations of cash.