Critical Habitat projects are our state’s primary tool for conserving important fish and wildlife habitat. These projects protect the rich and diverse habitats in our forests, prairies, and wetlands. These funds help maintain our state’s biodiversity and protect species that are popular for hunting, birding, and other outdoor recreation, and are critical for the health of our salmon and fish populations.
The Department of Fish and Wildlife will use to grant to buy up to 1,300 acres of a 4,100-acre area planned for future conservation. This purchase will conserve and enhance winter range habitat for the Mount Saint Helens elk herd as well as steelhead and coho salmon spawning and resting areas. The land will provide year-round public access to the Mount Saint Helens Wildlife Area and preserve about 17 miles of stream and surrounding habitat. Within the 1980 Mount Saint Helens blast zone, this area holds significant historical and recreational value for the community and visitors.