Category: Wildlife Area Management
Published: May 2020
Welcome to your fish and wildlife lands!
The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) provides active management for more than 1 million acres of publicly-owned land, most of which falls within 33 wildlife areas across the state (https://wdfw.wa.gov/about/wdfw-lands). These diverse lands contain nearly all species and habitats present in Washington. With the loss of natural habitat posing the single greatest threat to native fish and wildlife, these wildlife areas play a critical conservation role. The wildlife area management plan addresses all aspects of resource management, highlights areas for public access, education, and stewardship, and aligns with statewide conservation goals.
In addition to protecting lands and water for habitat and people, WDFW manages land to preserve Washington’s natural and cultural heritage, provide access for hunting, fishing, and wildlife-related recreation, and foster outdoor experiences and exploration throughout the state. We do this to support the species and habitats of Washington and ensure they prosper for our collective enjoyment well into the future.
An interdisciplinary team of WDFW staff members, including fish, habitat, and wildlife biologists, as well as enforcement and management, developed the Scatter Creek Wildlife Area Management Plan along with significant public involvement. This included input from the local stakeholder-based Scatter Creek Wildlife Area Advisory Committee, public agencies, and interested residents.
Wildlife area management planning framework
Management of wildlife areas is guided by WDFW’s mission and strategic plan, as well as by state and federal laws. Each new plan is guided by the Wildlife Area Management Planning Framework (Framework), which summarizes the agency’s mission, laws, policies, and approaches to management of fish and wildlife, as well as public use and recreation. To read the framework: (https://wdfw.wa.gov/publications/01810).
Purpose and organization of the plan
The purpose of the management plan is to guide management activities, including conservation and recreation, occurring on the Scatter Creek Wildlife Area for the next 10 years. Management goals, objectives, and performance measures are defined in the plan and are consistent with WDFW’s mission, strategic plan, and requirements associated with the funds used to purchase the wildlife areas. The plan provides a clear vision of how these lands are managed to a variety of audiences, including WDFW staff members and the public. Actions in the plan are dependent on available budget. Budget reductions made during the life of this plan may delay implementation of some actions.
The plan is organized into four parts. Part I provides an overview of the wildlife area and associated units including size, location, purpose, and other features. It also includes success stories, which showcase conservation, restoration, and partnerships with volunteers.
Parts II and III cover the wildlife area in more depth, including information to guide management activities and document the history, land ownership, stewardship, and recreation activities. Part II concludes with goals and objectives for the planning area, summarizing the priority actions, owners, and timelines for implementation. This section of the plan is reviewed and updated every two years.
Part III focuses on species and habitat management. It also describes the physical setting, such as soils, geology, hydrology and climate, as well as the effects of climate change. This section also describes the importance of the wildlife area as habitat for native game and non-game species.
Part IV is a compendium of appendices that include resources to support different areas of the plan, including species and habitat information, weed and forest management, fire response, research, and other studies.