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 will use this grant to acquire a 218-acre key property comprised of oak forest, farmland, riparian forest and wetland for inclusion in the Lacamas Prairie Natural Area. This natural area is located northeast of Vancouver and protects the second largest of 20 known populations of Bradshaw’s Lomatium, a globally critically imperiled, federally endangered plant species and provides habitat for seven state sensitive plant species and one rare animal species, the Slender-billed White Breasted Nuthatch. This acquisition will protect a key portion of the watershed which feeds into a protected rare remnant of Willamette Valley wet prairie that is the only example of its size and quality in Washington. The primary conservation opportunity provided by this project is enlargement of the existing protected habitat.