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 Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife will use this grant to purchase approximately 900 acres of prairie and oak woodlands interspersed with mixed conifer forest, wetland, and riparian habitat. Species that will benefit from this acquisition include the federally listed Taylor’s checkerspot butterfly and the Mazama Pocket Gopher. Additionally, the acquisition will protect four WDFW Ecological Systems of Concern: Willamette Valley Upland Prairie, Willamette Valley Wet Prairie, North Pacific Oak Woodland, and Temperate Pacific Freshwater Marsh. The site is located near the city of Tenino in Thurston County. The primary conservation value provided by this acquisition is habitat conservation.