N. Oregon Coast Wetland Preserve Gets a Little Bigger
Published 08/03/2015 at 5:14 PM PDT
(Manzanita, Oregon) – A wetlands preservation site on the north Oregon coast just grew in size. In the Manzanita area, the Sitka Wetlands tract along the northern edge of the Nehalem Bay recently had five acres added, bringing it up to 24 acres.
The Lower Nehalem Community Trust (LNCT) oversees the area and squired the land from private owners. The groups said the wetland is important as a wildlife corridor and for helping to protect water quality in the Nehalem Bay. Placing this land into conservation represents a great step forward for the group, and it said this will be a further boost the local ecosystem and for the community.
The state of Oregon now has only 38 percent of its historical wetlands still intact, with most now drained for human use. Yet these crucial areas are so important to both the natural world and to humans. Wetlands are often called the “kidneys of the landscape” because of their unique role in keeping whole ecosystems healthy.
Earlier this year, when the LNCT was presented with the opportunity to place just over five acres of healthy, functioning wetland into conservation, group spokesman Nancy Chase said they jumped at the chance.
“Landowners Bob and Ruth Simpson generously offered the land to the Trust at a bargain price, and the land will now be managed as part of the Trust's Sitka Wetlands complex,” Chase said. “It has been identified as an area of importance in the group's efforts to preserve the wetlands along this part of the north Oregon coast, which serves as an elk migration corridor, as well as habitat to numerous birds and amphibians.”
Preserving this property helps protect the water quality of the Nehalem Bay, Chase said, as well as protecting the wildlife corridor that exists between Nehalem Bay State Park to Alder Creek Farm to the east. You can see this wetland on the west side of Tohl Road in the Bayside Gardens district of Nehalem.
The Sitka Wetlands area is a bit of a secret on this part of the north Oregon coast, even though it is open to recreation such as hiking. Part of its future use may be educational as well. http://www.nehalemtrust.org/land-conservation/sitka-wetlands/
More about the Nehalem Bay area below, and at the Manzanita, Nehalem Bay, Rockaway Beach Virtual Tour, Map.
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