Urban Wildlife Habitat projects fund close-to-home places to play and explore nature. As our urban areas are increasingly expanding and densifying, these grants protect important fish and wildlife habitat within five miles of densely populated areas, creating green refuges that help keep our ecosystems healthy and provide places to enjoy nature right in our backyards.
The Spokane County Parks, Recreation and Golf Department will use this grant to buy 901 acres of high quality habitat that will link Mica Peak Conservation Area with Liberty Lake Regional Park, creating 5,300 acres of contiguous public, protected habitat for moose, elk, pileated woodpeckers, and other species with special status less than 5 miles from the cities of Liberty Lake and Spokane Valley. The project also will preserve rare old-growth trees, including Ponderosa pine, western hemlock, grand fir, and other species native to the Inland Northwest. The purchase will preserve a critical public trail connection between the well-established trail system in Liberty Lake Regional Park and the developing trail system in the Mica Peak Conservation Area. Lastly, this project protects Quinnamose Creek, which is the primary tributary to the Saltese Flats wetland complex, a critical stop for migrating birds and a significant aquifer recharge source for the region’s sole aquifer. Spokane County will contribute more than $1.3 million in conservation futures and donations of labor and property interest.