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Conserving wildlife habitat, agricultural and forest lands, scenic open space, wetlands, and shorelines for the benefit of our community and as a legacy for future generations.

Illabot Creek-Perrigoue Property

Property Description

The Illabot Creek Perrigoue Conservation Easement protects the shoreline and floodplain of Illabot Creek and is located in the upper Skagit River watershed. 

In December of 2014, Skagit Land Trust, working with private landowners Ken and Velma Perrigoue, protected more than 2,000 feet of critical salmon habitat along the federally-designated Wild & Scenic Illabot Creek in Rockport, WA. This voluntary partnership successfully protected the river shoreline and riparian area for salmon habitat while conserving the upper portions of the property as a working ranch. 

Illabot Creek - Perrigoue Conservation Area. Photograph credit: Skagit Land Trust staff.
Skagit Land Trust acquired the Illabot Creek - Perrigoue Conservation Easement to protect the agricultural open-space, scenic natural character and ecological value of the property. Photograph credit: Skagit Land Trust staff.

Read more about the Illabot Creek Perrigoue Conservation Easement in the February 2015 news article from the Skagit Valley Herald to learn about the partnerships that made this conservation easement possible.

Ecology

Illabot Creek provides exceptional spawning and rearing habitat for summer and fall Chinook, Coho, Chum, and Pink Salmon, Steelhead, and one of the largest populations of Bull Trout in the Skagit River watershed. Numerous side channels along Illabot Creek also serve as important spawning and rearing habitat for fish. Three of the fish species native to Illabot Creek are listed under the Federal Endangered Species Act: Chinook Salmon, native Steelhead and Bull Trout. The populations of Chum and Pink Salmon that spawn in Illabot Creek are some of the highest concentrations in the Skagit River watershed.

Salmon return to Illabot Creek to spawn. Photograph credit: Skagit Land Trust staff.
Illabot Creek supports a healthy population of salmon. Photograph credit: Skagit Land Trust staff.

The Illabot Creek Perrigoue Conservation Easement provides important habitat for Bald Eagle populations that winter along the Skagit River and feed on winter salmon runs. Land immediately adjacent to the protected property is part of the Skagit River Bald Eagle Natural Area: a mosaic of public and private lands protected and managed to support wintering populations of Bald Eagles along the Skagit River. 

The Illabot Creek Perrigoue Conservation Easement is one of many Skagit Land Trust properties along the upper Skagit River watershed set aside for conservation. The properties directly border land owned by the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WA DFW) to the north and west, and land managed by Washington Department of Natural Resources (WA DNR) to the south. Along with other conservation organizations in the area, properties managed by Skagit Land Trust in the upper Skagit create a patchwork of protected riparian lands along the Skagit River. 

Illabot Creek Perrigoue Conservation Area protects riparian forest along Illabot Creek, a tributary to the Skagit River. Photograph credit: Skagit Land Trust staff.
Above: Illabot Creek Perrigoue Conservation Easement protects mature riparian forest along the Skagit River and Illabot Creek. Photograph credit: Skagit Land Trust staff.

Flooding is an important ecological process that creates a diversity of habitat types including woodlands, shrublands, wet meadows, and marshes; all of which are adapted to specific flooding cycles. The protected forest provides important ecosystem functions including improving water quality, providing shade to cool stream temperatures, and serving as a source of large woody debris to the Skagit River. Illabot Creek Perrigoue Conservation Easement provides habitat for many species of wildlife including beaver, cougar, black bear, coyote, deer, and ruffed grouse.  

Illabot Creek begins 7,500 feet high in the southern portion of the Mount Baker - Snoqualmie National Forest and drains into the Skagit River in Rockport, Washington. See this December 2014 news article from the Skagit Valley Herald about the legislative process that led Illabot Creek to be federally recognized under the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act by President Barack Obama in 2014. 

 Map of Illabot Creek - Perrigoue Conservation Easement and surrounding conservation lands managed by Skagit Land Trust. Map created using NAIP aerial photograph by Skagit Land Trust staff.
Click on the map above for a larger image. Map generated using 2017 NAIP aerial imagergy by Skagit Land Trust staff.

The Illabot Creek Perrigoue Conservation Easement is located on private property and is not open to the public.

Property Info

  • Type: Conservation Easement
  • Location: Upper Skagit
  • Acreage: 100 acres
  • Date Added: 2014
  • Not open to the public

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