As Washington continues to grow, many of our most beautiful areas are threatened with development. In addition, native ecosystems are receding, and important wildlife habitat and migratory pathways are being cut off. The Natural Areas category helps combat this by funding projects that protect wildlife habitat and rare geological features while also preserving public access for back-country recreation.
The Department of Natural Resources proposes to acquire two parcels featuring saltwater shoreline and mature riparian forest, adding nearly 8 acres to the “natural area preserve” portion of Dabob Bay Natural Area. The natural area is located in the Hood Canal region of Puget Sound in Jefferson County. Both priority acquisition parcels are undeveloped. This project adds 2.2 acres of riparian lands and 5.7 acres of developable uplands to the natural area, maintaining 809 feet of naturally functioning shoreline that includes 652 feet of streams. The project parcels are adjacent to other recently acquired Dabob Bay properties managed by the department for conservation in perpetuity. In addition to directly conserving shoreline processes for a natural rate of sedimentation and woody debris that aids ecological function of Dabob Bay’s high-quality coastal spits, this project continues to assemble a conservation-focused shoreline in this area that may also support future educational and research activities within Dabob Bay Natural Area.