>Wildlife Update – 6/30/10

Deer Report.  Lots of deer reports including a doe with twin fawns at Illahee North.  Lots a raspberry eating and young apple tree grazing in one area along with a report of what they think must be one big deer because of the size of the droppings.  The attached picture was sent in from Ambleside along with the following note:

These two have been feasting on shrubs and rose bushes here in Amblesidesfor the past several months. I chase them out of our yard about once aweek.

Mountain Beaver Captured.  Not many people ever see mountain beavers because they are nocturnal and very timid.  They captured this one using watermelon rinds.  We received the following report along with the attached photos.  These are really quite nice looking animals and their fur is very soft.  We found out they let the mountain beaver loose the next day.
(So . . . have you heard of Snipe hunts? Well then, have you heard of mountain beavers? One of our neighbors claims to have captured one and sends these photos to prove it. What do you think?)

Young Raccoons at the Beach.  We have seen more raccoons at the beach this year than ever before, but finding three young ones at the beach was a first.  At first they tried to get down low and hide and then just starred as we took their pictures.

Another Rain Garden Plot Mulched.  When we put out an Update about a volunteer work party we never know how many people will show up.  It has ranged from two to over 20 and no matter how many are present we still get the job done.  On Wednesday we had a young man who, though only 12 years old, set the pace for the other four workers.  Corey Hamilton turned out to be one strong and energetic young worker who kept the rest of working as he loaded wheel borrow after wheel borrow and then brought the heaping loads for us to spread.  We never would have completed the plot if hadn’t been for his hard work.  The other person in the photo is his dad Edward and the last photo shows the plot completely mulched.

Plot #4 Still Remains To Be Mulched.  We have one plot yet to mulch and we have a big pile of mulch right close by.  We will let you know when the next work party will be held.  This is the last plot that needs mulching and it should be the easiest.  Let us know if you would like to help.

Jim Aho

>Mulching Work Party Scheduled for Wednesday – 6/29/10

>Wednesday Mulching Work Party. In our last Update we asked if there was a preferred day and/or time for work parties and only got a few requests with others saying they are generally available. We have decided to go with tomorrow, Wednesday (6/30/10), from 4:30 -7:30 pm for our next work party, which should be enough time to deplete the two big piles of mulch and complete the weeding and mulching of our native plant demonstration rain garden at the Almira parking lot of the Illahee Preserve. Note: We are sorry for the short notice but want to get the mulch down on the plots before it disappears as this has been a problem in the past with our wood chips.

Illahee Preserve Maintained by Volunteers. The Illahee Preserve is maintained by community volunteers, the Rotary Club of East Bremerton, the Illahee Preserve Stewardship Committee, the Illahee Forest Preserve Non-Profit Corporation, the Port of Illahee, and other groups, with administrative support from the Parks Department. Some have said the Preserve is a successful experiment of letting the surrounding community plan, support, and maintain a major county park. With the financial limitations of the county it is good to have so many community groups and volunteers stepping forward to help. A big thanks to all those who have volunteered and are interested in volunteering.

Jim Aho

>SMP&Rain Garden Progress – 6/24/10

>Illahee Shoreline. The Illahee Community has over 3 miles of salt water shoreline with many waterfront residents and with our easterly sloping topography many others with views of Puget Sound. These and other Illahee residents are assumed to be concerned about the future of the Sound. Kitsap County is updating and revising their Shoreline Master Program and is soliciting input, currently on the “Kitsap County Shoreline Inventory and Characterization (which is a large document of over 400 pages with the majority being maps) and available for viewing at the County’s website.

Shoreline Master Program (SMP). There have been a number of different articles on the SMP process that is going on in Kitsap County with the following article describing it in further detail: http://www.kitsapsun.com/news/2010/feb/27/shoreline-planning-under-way-in-kitsap/ Official information on the Shoreline Master Program (SMP) is available on the Kitsap County website: http://www.kitsapshoreline.org/index.html

SMP Task Force. A 20 member Task Force was selected to come up with recommendations for the County Commissioners, with their meetings being periodically reported in the Kitsap Sun. The link to the first meeting is noted below, followed by the link to a later meeting: http://www.kitsapsun.com/news/2010/apr/23/work-shoreline-task-force-gets-under-way/ and http://www.kitsapsun.com/news/2010/jun/04/kitsap-county-shorelines-discussion-comes-under/

SMP Representatives. Representatives were chosen to represent groups such as the Homebuilders and KAPO, and then it appears they were looking for representation geographically. We know a number of Illahee residents volunteered, with myself appearing to be the one selected to represent this general area.

Illahee Citizen Input? If you have input you would like me to bring to the Task Force deliberations, I will be glad to pass it on. So far we have mostly been receiving reports and data and just began formulating some goals. I will try to keep you posted on the SMP Task Force progress.

Rain Garden Progress. It was touch and go Wednesday as to whether we could weed and mulch rain garden Plot #3 with only 4 volunteers before it got dark. You can see from the first photo that the plot was full of weeds (we had been asked to do a before and after shots by those who helped on Tuesday). We started at 4:30 pm and finished at 8:30 pm with enough light to document the finished product and need to thank, from left to right in the last attached photo, Pat Graves, Don Jahaske, and Brett Aho, for all their work and for sticking it out until it was complete.

Two More Plots To Mulch. We have the two end plots yet to spread mulch on, which should be easy as we will spread the mulch over the existing wood chips. In other words those plots have already been weeded so all we need to do is get some wheel borrows and operators along with some with rakes to spread the mulch. The goal is to put it on thick so we don’t have to pull another weed.

Best Time To Help? We scheduled the Tuesday and Wednesday work parties based on input from those who suggested weekday evenings were best for them. If anyone would like to help with this final mulching effort, please let us know what day and time works best for you.

Jim Aho

>Wednesday Work Party – 6/22/10

>Wednesday Weeding & Mulching Work Party Scheduled. We have one rain garden plot left in the Illahee Preserve’s Almira parking lot that needs weeding and mulching and we want to complete it on Wednesday (6/23/10) from 5-7:30pm.

Volunteers Are Needed. We completed Plot #1 (see attached photo) on Tuesday evening with 8 volunteers, and many of those are not able to be there on Wednesday so additional volunteers are needed.

Mulch Delivered Tuesday Morning. 30 yards of mulch was delivered on Tuesday morning – see the attached photo – at a cost of over $400. 15 yards was placed by each of the rain garden plots to minimize the amount of wheelbarrowing.

More Links re Illahee Shooting. Since there are a number who don’t receive the Kitsap Sun we have provided the latest attached links to the shooting of Bill Green.
79-Year-Old Murder Suspect Told Deputies Her Husband ‘Egged Her On’

Elderly Suspect in Illahee Shooting Formally Charged, Then Released
Jim Aho

>Miscellaneous Items – 6/21/10


Tuesday 6/22/10 Illahee Events.  Two big events going on in Illahee on Tuesday afternoon/evening.  The weeding and mulching starts at 5 pm and the Port meeting begins at 7 pm.  

Weeding and Mulching Volunteers Needed.   On Tuesday 30 yards of mulch is being delivered to the Illahee Preserve’s Almira parking lot.  This is one big load of mulch which will fill one large truck and one large trailer.  Volunteers are needed to weed the rain garden plots before the mulch is put down and it is hoped that with enough volunteers the project can be completed on Tuesday, though we have also planned for Wednesday if needed.  If you can help it would be appreciated as the mulch will be dumped at the parking lot and needs to be placed quickly between the plants in the rain garden plots.  Please email us if you have any questions.

Tuesday Port of Illahee Meeting.  We noted Monday that there are a number of signs out in the community notifying residents of the Port of Illahee information meeting on Tuesday (6/22/10) at 7:00 pm at the Port’s new office at 5560 Ocean View Blvd .  The Port is hoping for another evening of good attendance as this the third community meeting where they explain what their options are with respect to the Illahee Community Club petition that will be distributed soon to the majority of residents, and has been distributed to a few neighborhoods.  If you haven’t received a petition yet they will be available at the meeting.  

East Bremerton Rotary Citizen of the Year.   We have been asked to include the following announcement in an Illahee Community Update of the East Bremerton Rotary Citizen of the Year:

Special Announcement
This past Friday Jim Aho was honored by East Bremerton Rotary as our Citizen of the Year .  Jim was recognized for his phenomenal contribution to Illahee and the greater East Bremerton community thru his tireless contributions toward protection and preservation of Illahee Forest and Illahee Creek.  East Bremerton Rotary adopted Illahee Preserve as an on-going Club project roughly 5 years ago.  East Bremerton Rotary Club members have taken a strong interest in Illahee Preserve and have seen first hand how Jim has poured himself into the improvement of our community thru his work in “all things Illahee.”  This is an annual award provided thru the Rotary Club of East Bremerton.  Jim and Kay attended the annual officer installation meeting last Friday where we surprised Jim by presenting him with this award.  The East Bremerton Rotary is grateful for all Jim Aho has done to make our community a better place to live.  Hooray for Jim Aho!

Comment re Announcement.  As the person who edits and distributes the Illahee Community Updates and for the time being has the Update lists, it was necessary for the local Rotary representatives to ask me to include the above announcement in this Update.  While I appreciate the honor and the award, I am continually impressed by Illahee residents and the surrounding community for their support of the Illahee Preserve and Illahee Creek.  And we all need to be especially appreciative of the East Bremerton Rotary for all their support for the Illahee Preserve, from the purchase of the large signs to the spreading of wood chips on the trails.  They are really an amazing and dedicated group supporting many community projects and needs, and we appreciate their adopting the Illahee Preserve as one of those projects!!!

Jim Aho

>Miscellaneous Items – 6/18/10

>Weeding & Mulching Work Party Scheduled. On Thursday we evaluated some less costly mulching material and decided to order 30 yards so we could complete the weeding and mulching of the rain garden plots at the Illahee Preserve’s Almira parking lot. We have asked for the mulch to be delivered on Tuesday (6/22) so that we could schedule a work party.

Volunteers Needed. We need volunteers to help weed and mulch on Tuesday (6/22), and possibly on Wednesday (6/23). We have been asked to schedule it for a late afternoon and evening so that those who work can participate and thus the 5-7:30 pm time frame.

Cost Comparisons. While beauty bark was running at roughly $30 a yard, we could order the other mulching material for $13 a yard delivered if we ordered 30 yards. This should be enough to mulch Plot #3 and finish Plot #1 with possibly some left over, depending on how thick it is applied.

Wood Chips Delivered on Friday. After the new mulch was ordered we had a tree service deliver a batch of mostly cedar wood chips to the Preserve, which is what the East Bremerton Rotary has been looking for for trail work. As one person noted isn’t this the way it always works.

Sirens In Illahee on Friday. We were in the Preserve on Friday afternoon when we heard police and emergency vehicle sirens and were sad to find out later that an Illahee resident, Bill Green, was killed in a domestic violence situation. Bill was one of the nicest and gentlest persons we have known. We have provided the link to the story that will appear in Saturday’s Kitsap Sun.
Elderly Illahee Woman Jailed on Suspicion of Killing Her Husband

Effect of Sirens in Illahee Area. We talked with an Illahee resident Friday afternoon who reported the wail of the sirens had the coyotes in her area howling, which in turn started her dogs barking. We report this as Illahee, while in an Urban Growth Area, still has open space areas and the Illahee Preserve with wildlife that make it seem quite rural at times.

Jim Aho

>Weeding&Mulching Work Party Postponed – 6/15/10

>Weeding & Mulching Work Postponed. We need to postpone the work party that was mentioned in our last Update, which read as follows:

Weeding and Mulching Work Party on Wednesday? With the change in weather it is incumbent that we complete the remaining weeding and mulching ASAP. Don Jahaske will be checking on getting a load of beauty bark delivered to the Preserve parking lot, probably 10-12 yards. We are looking at getting the bark on Wednesday with a work party on Wednesday evening from 5 – 7:30 pm. We will be concentrating on weeding and mulching Plot #3, which was designed by a landscape architect, though we didn’t follow her plans as well as we wanted because of plant availability. This plot does have small camas bulbs planted along the slightly winding waterway which will make the mulching in that area interesting.

New Mulch To Be Evaluated. We have essentially run out of wood chips at the Preserve Almira parking lot and we have not been able to come up with the bark or wood chips necessary to support a weeding and mulching work party on Wednesday. With bark mulch running about $30 a yard (or $450 for 15 yards, plus tax for Plot #3) we are looking at a less costly mulch. One of the Illahee Preserve Stewardship members will pick up a couple of yards of the less costly material tomorrow (Wednesday) to see if it is suitable for the rain garden area. Sorry for the delay but the cost was more than we had budgeted for. We will keep you informed of the new weeding and mulch date.

Thank you for all who were prepared to come on Wednesday.

Jim Aho

>Miscellaneous Items – 6/12/10

>Rain Garden Progress Report. We completed weeding and mulching in one of the largest rain garden plots, Plot #4, on Saturday. Attached are photos from Thursday when 4 volunteers braved the rain and finished the weeding but not all the mulching. As you can see from the photos we were almost done with the mulching and down to bare ground at the chip pile when the rain got so heavy that we quit. The rest of the mulching was completed on Saturday and the wood chip pile is now just about totally gone.

Weeding and Mulching Work Party on Wednesday? With the change in weather it is incumbent that we complete the remaining weeding and mulching ASAP. Don Jahaske will be checking on getting a load of beauty bark delivered to the Preserve parking lot, probably 10-12 yards. We are looking at getting the bark on Wednesday with a work party on Wednesday evening from 5 – 7:30 pm. We will be concentrating on weeding and mulching Plot #3, which was designed by a landscape architect, though we didn’t follow her plans as well as we wanted because of plant availability. This plot does have small camas bulbs planted along the slightly winding waterway which will make the mulching in that area interesting.

Volunteers Needed. We will want to complete the weeding and mulching on Wednesday so as not to tempt anyone from taking the bark should it not all get spread. We hope to have Aimee, our volunteer botanist and native plant expert, on hand to answer any questions. Once we have a commitment on the delivery of the bark, we will send out an email confirming the Wednesday (6/16/10) date.

Port of Illahee Meeting Signs. We noted that there are a number of signs out in the community notifying residents of the Port of Illahee information meeting on Monday (6/14/10) at 5:30 pm at the Fire Station on Old Military Road. The Port is hoping for a good attendance as they explain what their options are with respect to the Illahee Community Club petition that will be distributed soon to the majority of residents, and has been distributed to a few neighborhoods. We have been told a third meeting is being planned at the new Port meeting room at 5560 Ocean View Blvd at 7 pm on June 22nd in case residents can’t make the Monday meeting.

Illahee Community Club “My Turn” Article in Kitsap Sun. We were surprised and pleased to see that the Illahee Community Club responded to the disparaging remarks made by Larry Croix about the Illahee Community Club when he blasted the Port of Illahee a couple of weeks ago in the Kitsap Sun. We like the response and have provided the link to the article below.
Jim Aho

>Miscellaneous Items – 6/10/10


Deer Pictures. Below are some recent deer pictures and descriptions forwarded to us.

Mama doe was walking down Madrona Ave with her twins, mama & twin #1 scooted off into the field & #2 lost track of them. Eventually it found her scent & scampered off as well.

These two guys paid me a visit last Friday. Stayed in the back yard for a couple of hours.

We also had someone report a beautiful 4 or 5 point buck that was reluctant to move out off of Illahee Road about 5 am on Tuesday morning.

Rain Garden Weeding and Mulching Progress.
About half of rain garden plot 4 was weeded and mulched on Tuesday, and we hope to finish it today, Thursday (6/10/10). Depending on our progress this evening and the availability of wood chips, we may have a work party on Saturday morning from 9-11 am. We will assess things this evening and send out
another Update if the Saturday session is a go. Those working asked us to report that they could use some more help.

Illahee Road Accident. We talked with people who heard and responded to an accident on Illahee Road near Roosevelt very late Monday evening. The attached link is the report that was in the Kitsap Sun:

>Miscellaneous Items – 6/6/10

>Illahee Preserve Rock Moved. Some time, hopefully this year, there will be a dedication of the Illahee Preserve’s Almira parking lot. Yet to be finished is the dedication rock and the native plant rain garden. The move of the dedication rock into position was one of the hold-ups that was taken care of recently. The rock was moved by Elandan Gardens and the work was paid for by the Illahee Forest Preserve, the non-profit corporation established to help the Preserve and to promote the concept that parks such as the Preserve should be supported and maintained by volunteers to the maximum extent possible . See the attached Don Jahaske photos.

Rain Garden Weeding & Mulching. We decided we can’t wait any longer for more mulching wood chips to appear at the Almira parking lot. We will use whatever chips are still there until we run out since the weeds are getting out of control. We are looking at weeding and mulching the rain garden plots this week on Tuesday (6/8/10) and Thursday (6/10/10) from 5-7 pm, and on if needed on Saturday (6/12/10) from 9-11 am. Volunteers are welcome and are needed.

Another Illahee “My Turn” Sun Article. We were happy to see a second positive article about Illahee in Sunday’s Kitsap Sun, and congratulate Jim Brady for a well written response to the Larry Croix article. As many find out not all letters sent to the Sun get published and if you pass any on to us that didn’t get published we well be glad to send them out in an Update. The link to Mr. Brady’s letter is below:

More Responses Requested re Port’s Habitat Plan. The Port’s grant writer said he could use several more responses to the Port’s Habitat Conservation Plan. Responses are needed by Wednesday June 9th and can simply be to say you agree or disagree with the plan. We have attached one set of comments we received.

1. Thank you for a comprehensive draft Habitat Conservation Plan (HCP) and hope that you are receiving comments from other Illahee residents.

2. One important item that didn’t get much coverage was the recently county approved sub-area plan, the Illahee Community Plan. The plan corresponds with and complements the HCP, especially the fact that the much of the area is a recreational mecca because of its natural features, which have resulted in two major waterfront recreational docks, two major parks (Illahee State Park and the Illahee Preserve Heritage Park), and a popular golf course open to the public. The natural features make this a recreational economic development area that fits in with the Port requirement to support economic development.

3. The second item that also needs more coverage is how the Illahee Preserve corresponds with and complements the HCP. As the Preserve develops it has become an increasingly popular attraction to both the local community and the the extended areas of Bremerton and Silverdale. The Port has been supportive of the recent native plant demonstration rain gardens that were planted this spring and have committed to future signage stressing the importance of rain gardens to the area.

Jim Aho