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.
This site provides extremely critical habitat for a variety of endangered, threatened, and candidate species, including Bald eagles (winter roost) and Sandhill cranes (staging area). The Trout Lake wetland system contains the largest of only three known Washington populations of the Oregon Spotted Frog, a state threatened and federal candidate species. The site is comprised of over 70 percent wetlands and is considered a unique and invaluable area by amphibian experts. This wetland system is also part of the Pacific Flyway, and supports a large number of neotropical migratory birds. The area is important wintering habitat for black-tailed deer. It is part of an important movement corridor for a large elk herd and is used for wintering, spring foraging and calving. A variety of other wildlife species use the area, including black bear, river otter, coyotes, beaver, small mammals and amphibians. Resident trout use the creek and marsh channels. One of the two largest populations of the rare pale blue-eyed grass, a federal candidate species, and the largest population of the rare Pulsifers monkey-flower known to occur in Washington State are found here.