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.
Jefferson Land Trust is applying for acquisition funds for the Quimper Wildlife Corridor (QWC), located in Port Townsend, Jefferson County. The City, County, the Land Trust and the community have worked since the mid 1990s to protect a 3.5 mile greenbelt of native forest and a series of palustrine wetlands stretching across the N. Quimper Peninsula, following the City’s largest drainage basin. Historic platting from the 1880s divided most of this land into 50×100 ft lots. To date, the partners have permanently preserved over 245 acres that provide habitat for over 130 bird species, including WDFW priority species Pileated woodpecker, bald and golden eagles, amphibians, mountain beaver, bobcat, cougar, deer, elk and other wildlife. A beloved and extensive network of trails and undeveloped City right-of ways through the QWC provide access to community members and visitors for hiking, horse riding, biking, connecting neighborhoods, bird watching, school nature programs and educational activities. Recent outreach to remaining priority private owners resulted in over 40 positive responses for sale of missing links within the QWC. Funding for this effort will allow us to acquire and permanently preserve many of these important habitat connecting and trail buffer parcels. Working with our City partners, it will also support an update of our shared management plan and an inventory of rare old growth trees scattered within the forest that hint of remnant prairie habitat.