February 2017 Newsletter
Lake Washington/Cedar/Sammamish Watershed
Water Resource Inventory Area (WRIA) 8

Beach naturalist trainingLearn about Puget Sound beaches and educate others!

Why do barnacles stand on their heads?  Find out when you volunteer as a Seattle Aquarium Beach Naturalist. After training, naturalists spend three low tide days educating visitors about inter-tidal life and beach etiquette at Puget Sound beaches. To attend this year’s orientation on March 21, register by March 15. Email beachnaturalist@seattleaquarium.org  or call 206-693-6214 with questions.

Natural lands protected near Lake Sammamish

As our region continues to grow, open space is more important than ever for people and fish. Partnering with the Trust for Public Land, the City of Issaquah recently acquired 46 acres of forested land next to popular Lake Sammamish State Park.

Invasive species appSee it? Report it! Help stop the spread of invasives – with your phone!

An updated app from the Washington Invasive Species Council lets you report – via your phone -- unusual sightings of potential invasive species, whether it’s a new plant taking over your local park or a strange fish you reel in. Once experts verify your report, it becomes part of a nation-wide system tracking invasives.  Learn more at http://www.invasivespecies.wa.gov/

Read, watch and share these resources on green shorelines…

Fish-blocking culvertOn salmon and fish barriers…

Check out the new “Making Way for Salmon” video produced by Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) that highlights the importance of removing fish barriers that keep salmon from their spawning grounds. The film includes a great segment on the challenges faced by Lake Sammamish kokanee.

And water quality in our watershed

Salmon in the news:

SalmonReport says salmon are in trouble, with most below recovery goals (Peninsula Daily News)

State high court backs stricter stormwater rules (Kitsap Sun)

Predators may play a role in Chinook salmon declines

Marine mammals may impact salmon survival

Non-native fish in Lake Washington may prey on juveniles (Seattle Times)

Low kokanee numbers return to Lake Sammamish tributaries this winter (Isssaquah Press)

Planting“Get your feet wet” to help salmon habitat

Help restore habitat with Mountains to Sound Greenway at Pickering Reach on March 11. Or plant trees at Luther Burbank Park on March 18. Register at http://mtsgreenway.org  or contact volunteer@mtsgreenway.org or 206-373-1600. And see “The Dirt” calendar of volunteer opportunities from King County.

Find out how to care for your streamside property February 23 at the Woodinville Library!

King Conservation District will host a free workshop on protecting and beautifying properties along streams, lakes and wetlands. Minimize runoff, control invasive weeds, use native plants, and learn how environmental regulations may affect you. Sign up at Eventbrite or contact Kristen Reichardt at kristen.reichardt@kingcd.org or 425-282-1927.

KCD native plant crewBuy native plants for spring projects – order by February 28

Get more than 60 different trees, shrubs, berries, and groundcovers for home landscapes and habitat restoration at the annual King Conservation District (KCD) Native Plant Sale. Place your order by February 28 and pick up your plants March 11 next to the KCD offices at 1107 SW Grady Way in Renton.

Funds available!

Apply for Puget Sound stewardship grants by March 1
Non-profits, tribes or governments may apply for Puget Sound Stewardship & Mitigation Fund grants from the Rose Foundation by March 1. The awards, for $25,000 or less, should be designed to improve Puget Sound water quality. Applications from environmental justice organizations are strongly encouraged.  Learn more about the Rose Foundation's Puget Sound Stewardship & Mitigation Fund.

PlantingGrants available from Washington Native Plant Society (WNPS)
The WNPS is accepting grant applications through March 1 for projects that restore, improve, or support on-the-ground, functioning native plant ecosystems in Washington for public benefit.  See Washington Native Plant Society's website or contact Becky Chaney at 425-880-4220 or becky@chaney.org.

Cities! Apply for Conservation Futures Tax Levy funds
Parks directors and administrators for King County cities are invited to apply for over $9 million of 2018 Conservation Futures tax levy (CFT) funds to buy public open space lands. Applications are due March 8. For more information, contact Lori King at 206-477-4776 or lori.king@kingcounty.gov - or visit King County's Conservation Futures website.

NOAA offers two grant opportunities this spring

NOAA Coastal Resilience Grant applications are due March 15. Projects must strengthen coastal communities and/or restore habitat. Eligible applicants include nonprofits, institutions of higher education, private entities, and local, state, and tribal governments. Typical awards range from $250,000 to $1 million for projects up to three years.

Applications to the Community-based Restoration Program are due March 23. The program will fund coastal habitat restoration projects that help recover listed species and more.  Regional priorities include restoring ecosystem function in Puget Sound. Proposals may range from $100,000 to $4 million over a one- to three-year period. More information is available at: Federal Funding Opportunity or contact Megan Callahan Grant at 503-231-2213 or megan.callahan-grant@noaa.gov.

Funding opportunity for salmon habitat projects on agricultural land
Get your proposal in by April 21 to request funding for projects on private working lands that restore riparian areas, enhance instream habitat, correct man-made fish passage barriers, and more. $375,000 is available for projects in Western Washington. Get details at the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service website.

Work with Department of Ecology (DOE) to get a national wetlands grant.
Although only state agencies are eligible to apply for USFWS National Coastal Wetlands Conservation (NCWC) grants, DOE is looking to support projects with partner organizations as they have in past years. To find out more about DOE sponsoring an application for your organization, contact Heather Kapust at 360-407-0239 or heather.kapust@ecy.wa.gov. Site visits will be in March with final applications due in June, so act now!

Chinook salmon (also known as king salmon) are listed as threatened under the Endangered Species Act. In WRIA 8, citizens, scientists, businesses, environmental and community organizations, and local, state and federal governments are cooperating on protection and restoration projects and have developed a science-based plan to conserve salmon today and for future generations. Funding for the salmon conservation plan is provided by 28 local governments in the watershed. For more information visit our website at www.govlink.org/watersheds/8/.

If you would like to submit an item for inclusion in the next WRIA 8 e-newsletter, please email linda.grob@kingcounty.gov.