They say that water connects all of us and it couldn’t be more true here in the Pacific Northwest. Rain that falls in our neighborhoods finds its way to the nearest stream or river which then eventually flows to the ocean. Here in the Bothell/Kenmore area, the Sammamish River connects our towns and leads to numerous small streams. Streams like Swamp Creek and North Creek wind their way through our own backyards but are also home to Pacific salmon. Right now these fish are returning from the ocean to spawn and build the next generation of mighty salmon plying the Pacific. We’re growing salmon in Bothell/Kenmore and that’s pretty cool to think about. Salmon are also extremely important and significant to tribes for culture and subsistence.
Many of us delighted in the recent visit of orcas in Seattle waters the second week of September. These endangered Southern Resident killer whales number just 73 individuals. Recent hopeful news was reported by the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) that three females in J pod are confirmed to be pregnant. These pregnancies still face challenges and tough odds as approximately 70% of all pregnancies are lost due to lack of food, primarily Chinook salmon according to research by the Center for Conservation Biology at UW. Salmon growing in Bothell and Kenmore are feeding orcas, and they could really use more.
Recognizing this tight connection between local communities, salmon, and orcas shared through our waters, the regional conservation districts created Orca Recovery day in 2018. Initially born out of the fallout from the tragic story of Tahlequah and her dead newborn calf, whom she carried for 17 days and over 1,000 miles, Orca Recovery Day has engaged thousands of people each year in on the ground projects that make a difference. This year local groups in Bothell and Kenmore are joining together to celebrate Orca Recovery Day at four events! Each event will offer families of all ages a variety of hands on stewardship and educational activities.
Former Wayne Golf Course with Whale Scout and OneBothell
10am – 1pm
Volunteer to improve habitat! Portions of Bothell’s largest park, the former Wayne Golf Course, are a migratory corridor for Chinook salmon in the Sammamish River and potential habitat for Coho at the confluence of Waynita Creek. As this amazing property transforms from a golf course into a public open space, volunteers are offered the opportunity to help improve the habitat. By controlling non-native and invasive weeds, and protecting native trees and vegetation, we’re able to improve water quality for salmon and down the line provide more prey for killer whales in Puget Sound! Members from OneBothell, a nonprofit that worked tirelessly to preserve this property, will also join the event sharing their story and upcoming projects including monthly educational walks around the park showcasing unique features and stories. Ask a killer whale scientist! Dr. David Bain will lead a short walk sharing recent research about endangered Southern Resident killer whales.
Wallace Swamp Creek Park with Sno-King Watershed Council
11am – 2pm
Join Sno-King Watershed Council, in partnership with the City of Kenmore, for habitat restoration! From 1997 to 2015, volunteers with the Salmon Watcher Program recorded salmon observations at various locations in Swamp Creek. Volunteers consistently saw coho in the creek. Less commonly spotted were kokanee and sockeye salmon. We’re working on making Swamp Creek a place where salmon are again regularly spotted. We’re not working creek-side just yet, but every bit of the natural open space in the park is valuable as native habitat. Please bring a mask in the event that social distancing is not possible. Please also bring your own work gloves and your favorite tool for digging (both small garden shovels and large digging shovels will be handy) and/or a hand clippers. We will be digging knotweed, clipping blackberry canes, and digging blackberry root balls! We will be working near the parking lot. Questions? Ready to RSVP? Email Tracy at firstname.lastname@example.org
North Creek Forest with Friends of North Creek Forest and the City of Bothell
10am – 2pm
Join us for a volunteer Stewardship work party! We are going to be walking up a trail into the inner forest and removing invasive blackberries where they are creeping into a forest clearing Tools and work gloves provided. Dress for the weather. Closed-toe shoes are required. Boots are recommended. Volunteers ages 15 and younger must be accompanied by an adult. Volunteer work parties provide great networking opportunities, an introduction to restoration ecology, and a fun way to spend time in the great outdoors!
Shelton View Forest with Shelton View Forest Stewardship Association
10am – 1pm
oin us in Shelton View Forest in Bothell for trail maintenance, trash and invasive species removal, tree planting, and more. Learn more about this unique urban forest and why it is important to the health of the Swamp Creek Watershed and salmon and orca protection. All participants must pre-register. Volunteers should dress to work outside and bring their own water, snacks, and work gloves. SVFSA will provide clean tools and gloves to those that need them. Face coverings and physical distancing are required. Read our full COVID Safety Plan here: tinyurl.com/COVIDsafetySVFSA Questions? Contact email@example.com.