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.
Acquisition of additional acreage, including shoreline, will enhance the Woodard Bay NRCA and the viability of the Urban Wildlife Habitat habitat in a rapidly developing residential area. Land acquisition will ensure that the site continues to provide important habitat for wildlife, including nesting Bald Eagles, a significant heron rookery and the largest harbor seal nursery in south Puget Sound. With habitat ranging from shoreline to wetlands to mature second growth forest, homes for shorebirds and songbirds, river otters and a maternity colony of bats will continue to be protected at Woodard Bay NRCA. Located within minutes of downtown Olympia and the City of Lacey, the NRCA offers many opportunities for environmental education, including interpretive signs and nature trails with views of tideland, old growth cedar and a myriad of wildlife. A small portion of project funds will be used for a shoreline restoration project, featuring invasive plant removal, native plant restoration, and removal of a septic system, utilities, and related abandoned structures.