Olympia Coalition for Ecosystems Preservation seeks to protect the ONLY rookery of Pacific Great Blue Herons within Olympia city limits. They are an important part of the West Bay Woods/Schneider Creek ecosystem. The 4.5-acre site of the heronry has been purchased. OlyEcosystems is working to restore the woods and protect the buffer zone.
Who are we?
We are a growing group of Olympia citizens, businesses and environmental organizations who propose to restore and re-wild this area such that it becomes quality habitat, enabling our region’s wildlife to persist and thrive for future generations. We are driven by our understanding of the intrinsic value of all creatures in our ecosystem. We are united in our value of biodiversity and believe that our human community is enriched by and defined by our relationship to the wilderness in our midst.
About the Herons:
Our Pacific Great Blue Heron is of the fannini sub-species whose range is coastal Washington, British Columbia, and Alaska. It is different than the Great Blue Heron of Eastern Washington and Oregon, and indeed the rest of the continental United States. Our local population have been using the woods above West Bay as a nesting site for approximately 35 years. The lack of protection for them in the City’s comprehensive plan and the weakness of the Olympia City’s Critical Areas Ordinance threaten their continued use of these woods.
Without the Great Blue Heron and other wild species making their homes in our City, we are losing an integral part of our community’s identity, our children’s future, and the economic stability that rests on tourists and residents that come to Olympia for our rare and unique access to hike, kayak, sail, swim, walk or simply sit and watch the mountains, water, and wildlife.