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.
This project will acquire properties near Bremerton in Kitsap County. These properties are highly threatened by development and are a crucial part of a larger project area that contains the highest quality occurrence of a rare forest community type and a variety of high quality wildlife habitats. More than 98 percent of similar mature forest conditions (>100 years old) in the Puget Trough ecoregion have been lost since European settlement. The project area is one part of a much larger landscape-scale area of managed forest lands on the western Kitsap Peninsula that form one of the most important landscapes for biodiversity conservation in the Puget Trough. Stavis Creek, which runs through the site, is one of the best remaining Hood Canal salmon spawning habitats and is a designated recovery area for threatened Hood Canal summer chum. High-quality freshwater wetlands located on the properties form the headwaters of the creek and have habitat for cavity-nesting ducks. The site also hosts an active Bald Eagle nest, a small Great Blue Heron rookery, breeding Mountain Quail, Chinook Salmon, Cougar, and Black Bear. The objective is to protect all functionally connected natural-regeneration forests and high-quality wetlands from development, timber harvest, and other commercial uses. This project greatly enhances the long-term viability and quality of wildlife habitat in a still-intact functional landscape that is threatened with urban fragmentation.