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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.

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Tope Ryan Conservation Area Expands

The Tope Ryan Conservation Area grew to more than 20 acres at the end of 2020, thanks to the generous donation of 4.5 acres by Cougar Peak, LLC. This donation protects an additional 900 feet of Samish River and Swede Creek shoreline. The property is located within FEMA’s 100 year floodplain.

Swede Creek joins with the Samish River at the new addition. This stretch of water is of particular importance for salmonids juvenile salmon due to the habitat complexity at the site. The river features wide gravel bars and critical spawning grounds for Coho and Chum Salmon as well as Steelhead and Cutthroat Trout.

The Tope Ryan Conservation Area provides food and shelter for a wide variety of wildlife. Beavers have engineered a dynamic wetland with riparian coverage, ponds, and natural large woody debris. The site is popular for bird watching and wildflowers.

This project was funded in part by the US EPA under the National Estuary Program. Their support, along with support from our members, will allow for restoration work along the river and an interpretive sign to educate visitors and students about the importance of riparian buffers and restoration. These restored lands help to improve water quality in the Samish River for the benefit of the people and wildlife.

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