Parks and Partners To Celebrate First City Wildlife Sanctuary

Seattle Parks and Recreation, the Heron Habitat Helpers (HHH), and the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (DFW) invite the public to attend the official opening of Parks’ first wildlife sanctuary at Kiwanis Ravine from 6 to 8 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 6 at the Discovery Park Visitor Center, 3801 W Government Way. 

The first group to step up for a wildlife sanctuary nomination is Heron Habitat Helpers, a local organization committed to the preservation of the Great Blue Heron colony in Kiwanis Ravine. HHH’s goals are to preserve the colony, control invasive plant species, and create a backyard monitoring program in the adjacent neighborhood. For more information on HHH, please see http://heronhelpers.org/

Kiwanis Ravine, located on W Government Way between 35th Ave. W and Brygger Ave. W., is home to a broad diversity of wildlife, including the largest Great Blue Heron colony in Seattle. 

The site is now recognized under Parks’ Wildlife Sanctuary Program. With the public’s help, Parks is identifying and protecting critical urban wildlife habitat in Seattle for Washington State’s most vulnerable species. Parks’ Wildlife Sanctuary Policy articulates Parks’ commitment to sustain habitats for a wide variety of wildlife and outlines steps Parks will take to create and manage wildlife sanctuaries for these species:

  • Local populations of federally endangered or threatened species
  • State Priority Species and Species of Concern
  • Locally important species with declining populations.  

The program goal is to promote the value of healthy and diverse urban wildlife populations by working with the community to combine planning efforts, maintenance practices, educational opportunities, and volunteer stewardship to support our Wildlife Sanctuaries. 

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Nominations Sought for New Wildlife Sanctuaries

In 2009, the Seattle Board of Park Commissioners approved the Wildlife Sanctuary Policy, which articulates Seattle Parks’ commitment to sustain habitats for a wide variety of wildlife, and outlines steps Parks will take to create and manage wildlife sanctuaries for these species:

  • Local populations of federally endangered or threatened species
  • State Priority Species or Species of Concern
  • Locally important species with declining populations

Parks invites nominations for wildlife sanctuary locations from the community. Any individual or community group can submit a nomination for a park site, between April 15 and June 15, 2010, of a location they think should become a sanctuary. 

The nomination form is available now. Assessment of wildlife sanctuary applications will be completed by June 30, 2010, and the Parks Superintendent will have final approval of all nominated sanctuaries. 

You can find nomination forms, instructions and references online at

http://www.seattle.gov/parks/wildlife/sanctuary.

Nomination packets will also be available at Seattle Parks and Recreation Administration Building, 100 Dexter Ave. N, Seattle on April 13. 

Parks’ goal is to promote the value of healthy and diverse urban wildlife populations by working with the community to combine planning efforts, maintenance practices, educational opportunities, and volunteer stewardship to support wildlife. 

For help and more information, please call Barbara DeCaro, Natural Resources Management Unit, at 206-615-1660 or email her at barbara.decaro@seattle.gov 

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