25 reasons to give in 2020

25 reasons to give in 2020

Conservation Northwest / Dec 17, 2020 / Members, Work Updates

From creating safe passage for wildlife to protecting transboundary watersheds from mining pollution, here are 25 reasons to support a wild Northwest!

By Matthew Brouwer, Development Director

As we move through the shortest, gloomiest days of the year, need a little boost to brighten your day and get you inspired about innovative public lands protection, habitat restoration and wildlife recovery efforts?

We hope you’ll make a year-end gift to support these critical conservation programs and help keep our region’s wildlife and wildlands resilient and vibrant now and for future generations. 

1. We’re on the ground working with local partners to restore sagelands species and habitat destroyed by this summer’s record-breaking wildfires in north-central Washington.

2. As part of our Cascades to Olympics program, we’ve identified sites along the Satsop and Newaukum Rivers in southwest Washington where we can remove thick brush under highway and freeway bridges to assist movement for large mammals like Roosevelt elk and black bears.

A bridge over the Newaukum River near Chehalis. Our Cascades to Olympics program seeks to enhance structures like these to better serve as safe wildlife crossings. Photo: Brian Stewart

3. Through our coordination, the Working for Wildlife Initiative continues to make progress restoring habitat connectivity in the Okanogan Valley—one of the most important wildlife corridors in the state—by facilitating the acquisition of conservation easements, purchasing key private properties, lobbying for more wildlife crossings on Highway 97, and restoring degraded habitat through forest thinning and road removal. Species such as sharp-tailed grouse, Canada lynx and mule deer are the benefactors.

4. More than 15 additional range riders were in the field this summer in northeast Washington wolf territory thanks to our successful advocacy efforts in Olympia and our Range Rider Pilot ProjectVirtually no wolf conflict with livestock occurred where these riders were deployed.

5. In response to ongoing movements for racial justice, we continue to learn how to become more inclusive in our work, raise awareness about communities that face barriers to accessing public lands and wild spaces, and uplift voices of those who have been left out of conservation efforts.

6. We’re monitoring and advising the U.S. Forest Service on major restoration efforts like the Mission and Mount Hull projects affecting tens of thousands of acres of public land on the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest to ensure they continue to meet restoration objectives.

7. Joined a massive lobbying effort that helped pass the Great American Outdoors Act, the biggest conservation win in a generation. 

8. Worked with contractors to remove 7.5 miles of fencing in the Quilomene and Whiskey Dick wildlife areas east of Ellensburg, improving habitat connectivity for species like mule deer while continuing to improve public access at these popular recreation areas.

Washington Conservation Corp crew member rolling up derelict fencing in the Whiskey Dick Wildlife area. Photo: WDFW

9. Working with Veterans nonprofit VetsCafé exploring opportunities to utilize a 120-acre farm near Centralia as a conservation property and possible site for a future I-5 wildlife crossing in the Cascades to Olympics corridor.

10. Successfully decommissioned 27 miles of road and are now working to protect and restore riparian areas on rangeland on the Tonasket Ranger District in the Okanogan Highlands.

11. Successfully concluded our fisher reintroduction project, releasing more than 250 fishers into the Cascade and Olympic Mountains over 12 years. They’re now having babies!

Fishers being released in the North Cascades on October 24, 2019. Photos: David Moskowitz,

12. Raised the alarm on a massive clearcut under planning in the Nooksack River Watershed of the Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest with the goal of changing it back to a beneficial plan for forest thinning and road removal.

13. WSDOT wildlife cameras caught sight of a fisher utilizing an I-90 underpass demonstrating how these crossings are successfully reconnecting the North and South Cascades. Later in the summer, we learned that a wolverine family had returned to Mount Rainier!

14. As part of a powerful coalition involving the Quinault Nation and Chehalis Tribe and numerous conservation partners, we are pushing back against the proposed Chehalis Dam and helping shape the Chehalis Basin Strategy, a comprehensive plan for restoring aquatic and terrestrial species from salmon to elk in Washington’s second largest watershed.

15. In the Colville National Forest, our local staff continue to work as part of the Northeast Washington Forestry Coalition monitoring and advising the U.S. Forest Service to ensure that forest restoration remains a priority in our state’s least protected national forest.

16. Trail cameras continue to provide us with thousands of pictures of mule deer, cougars, skunks, racoons, bobcats, turkeys and other wildlife safely utilizing the renovated Janis Bridge wildlife crossing on Highway 97.

17. Through our Healthy Watersheds Campaign, we’re fighting for mining policy reform in British Columbia to protect transboundary rivers like the Columbia, Similkameen and Skagit.

Forests and watersheds have yet to recover after the 2014 Mount Polley Mine disaster. Stronger regulations and financial assurances are needed to protect against future mining spills in transboundary watersheds. Photo: J. Mack

18. In 2021, we’ll continue lobbying Congress to pass a massive infrastructure bill that could bring millions of dollars to Washington for new wildlife crossings and habitat restoration projects.

19. We also plan to be before the Washington Supreme Court in 2021 with the hopes of re-interpreting the state Constitution to allow the DNR to manage our public lands beneficially for all the people, not just fiduciary trusts.

20. We’re watching the U.S. Forest Service on the Little Crow Project to ensure timber sale receipts go towards important habitat restoration projects that will improve forest health and water quality in the Little Naches Watershed.

21. Launched our new Cascades to Olympics program, working on an ambitious, landscape-level scale to improve habitat connectivity between two of Washington’s great mountain ecosystems.

22. Fighting for Endangered Species Act protection for Northwest wolverines so they can continue to make a comeback in the Cascades.

23. Working with conservation partners and government leaders for stronger protections for Washington’s vulnerable bighorn sheep herds as they face ongoing threats of disease from domestic sheep.

24. Continuing to work with the U.S. Forest Service on the Snoquera project north of Mount Rainier National Park to remove culverts for better fish passage, repair dispersed campsites in sensitive river ecosystems, and restore thousands of acres of degraded forestland.

25. You become part of the largest organization and network in Washington devoted exclusively to protecting, connecting and restoring Northwest wildlands and wildlife!

Thank you for making all of this possible and putting your care for wildlife and wildlands into action WITH A year-end gift!
The winner of our 2020 Wild Northwest Photo Contest Northwest Wildlife category: Mountain lion, taken with a DIY camera trap using a dSLR camera, taken in the sagelands of Yakima County. Photo: Dylan Collins