Conserving land along our waterways protects important habitat and helps keep our rivers healthy, clean, and more resilient to drought. Riparian Protection projects conserve and restore fresh and saltwater habitat while protecting fish habitat. In doing so, the grants help provide our families, farms, and fisheries with clean water across the state.
The Department of Natural Resources will use this grant to buy about 1,346 acres within the ecological core of the Chehalis River Surge Plain Natural Area Preserve (NAP). The site provides a rare opportunity to protect a large intact ecosystem with natural hydrologic functions. The properties to be acquired include critical parts of Preacher’s and Blue sloughs, which are sinuous tidally influenced waterways that wind through the heart of the surge plain. Sloughs such as this provide important off-channel habitat for juvenile salmonids during their adjustment to marine conditions. The NAP is located south east of the town of Central Park in Grays Harbor County, along the Chehalis River.