DNR Natural Areas Program has added a new natural area preserve (NAP) to the statewide system. Lacamas Prairie, located northeast of Vancouver, in the Puget Trough/Willamette Valley ecoregion, represents the best and only known remnant of the Willamette Valley wet prairie ecosystem in Washington. It’s one of only 20 remaining sites and the largest of four known populations of Bradshaw’s lomatium, a globally rare and federally-listed endangered plant species.
This prairie remnant occurs in a native valley landscape mosaic with Oregon white oak woodland and Oregon ash wetland forest. Lacamas Prairie protects six other plant species rare in Washington and habitat for the slender billed white-breasted nuthatch, a bird becoming increasingly rare in our region. Waterfowl winter in the wetland, and there have been recent sightings of Western Gray squirrel within the oak forest.
The addition of the Lacamas Prairie site brings the total number of natural areas managed by DNR’s Natural Areas Program to 90. These areas include 55 natural area preserves and 37 natural resources conservation areas on more than 150,000 acres.
Many of these sites provide excellent opportunities for low-impact activities such as bird watching and other wildlife viewing, hiking, kayaking and other low impact public uses.
Read about other DNR-managed Natural Area Preserves
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