Illahee 1/25/18 Eurasian Wigeon, Illahee Preserve Trail Work, Illahee Store Cleanup Grant Ranks #16

Eurasian Wigeon.  How do we know the same flock of American wigeons come year after year?  We think is because we have seen one Eurasian wigeon every year for years in the local flock that frequents the Illahee waterfront.  We haven’t noticed its mate this year and we haven’t seen any offspring so we will keep watching for it and reporting on this unusual visitor until he stops coming.

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Illahee Preserve Trail Work.  A new trail has been approved for the Illahee Preserve and the next week this group was seen working on it.  New trails in the Preserve go through an intensive review by everyone concerned to make sure they meet all the various established parameters, one of which is separation from other trails, and potential or future use, both of which were considered as the forested area between the Preserve and Fred Meyers is slated for clearing soon and the building of a multifamily housing units.  When the trail is ready the access areas will be opened and there will likely be a ribbon cutting as the trail is a half mile in length and will require a major effort to complete it.
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Illahee Store Cleanup Grant Ranks #16.  We noticed the Port of Illahee scored #16 on the Pollution Liability Insurance Agency’s Loan & Grant program to clean up contaminated sites.  The Port approved a resolution that they would try and purchase the abandoned Illahee Store should they be approved for a grant.  10 million dollars was allocated this year, with up to one million per site, so while funds may not be available this year if every site put in for the maximum allowable, they would be next of the list the following year as the list is not reshuffled.  On the other hand, it is possible it could happen this year, if the 10 million makes it to #16.  Before anything can happen the Port would need to purchase the store at a likely sheriff’s sale, if and when it takes place.
PLIA Ranking List
Jim Aho

Illahee 1/18/14 Eagle, Downed Trees, Stream Stewards Class, Water Meters, Wigeons, Eurasian Wigeon, Beach Walk, Illahee in Kitsap Sun Article, Port of Manchester Article

Eagle.  A local bald eagle surveys the waterfront from the top of a fir tree.

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Downed Trees.  We were out of town during last weeks wind storm so we were surprised to find several downed trees still across a couple of trails, though all the other areas were taken care of by Illahee Preserve volunteers.  These last two will be removed by the volunteer maintenance crew on Sunday.
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Stream Stewards Class.  There is a class coming up that should be of interest to those interested in the Illahee Preserve, watersheds, and Illahee Creek.  There is an article in Sunday’s Kitsap Sun http://www.kitsapsun.com/news/2014/jan/18/county-poised-to-undertake-logging-plans-at/  about logging in Heritage Parks, and while Illahee isn’t mentioned, it is a Heritage Park and needs to eventually have a Forest Stewardship plan prepared.  The Stream Stewards Class is a good beginning for developing a Forest Plan.
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Water Meters.  We thought it interesting to see these two new water meters being installed along Illahee Road the other day.
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Wigeons.  There are lots of American wigeon ducks that winter in the Puget Sound area, and are shown in the photo below, except for the red headed one and its mate.
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Eurasian Wigeon.  The red headed wigeon and its mate are Eurasian wigeons common to the northern most parts of Asia and Europe, and winters in southern Asia and Africa.  We tend to see a few of these every year in the Puget Sound area.
 
Beach Walk.  The beach walk in the article below is followed by a sea star disease wasting training.
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Illahee in Kitsap Sun Article.  We had several who noticed that Illahee was mentioned in the following page 2 article in the Kitsap Sun on Saturday (1/18/14).
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Port of Manchester Article.  We also had several who mentioned the Port of Manchester article on the front page of Saturday’s (1/18/14) Kitsap Sun.  http://www.kitsapsun.com/news/2014/jan/17/port-of-manchester-raises-launch-fees-2-per-day/
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Jim Aho

Illahee 1/26/13 Website, Eurasian Wigeon, Stream Steward’s Class Visits the Preserve, Old Tree Spotted, Shots Fired?, Stormwater Effects on Salmon, Illahee Film in Portland

Website.  As we continue to add to our email list, it is good to remind everyone that updates are posted on the illaheecommunity.com website, where they are archived and can be accessed in various ways (chronological order, or by date, or subject matter).  We like having the website for the archiving feature, which provides a history of events, but also because we can correct obvious grammatical and other errors (which are not done with emailed updates).


Eurasian Wigeon.  We observed more Eurasian wigeon today (Saturday) with a flock of American wigeon. 
Stream Steward’s Class Visits the Preserve.  On Friday (1/25/13) the WSU Stream Steward class had a field trip to the Illahee Preserve, to learn about forest ecology.  The photo below shows the class learning about Red Alders.
Old Tree Spotted.  We went of the field trip and were especially happy when a very old Douglas fir tree was pointed out.  It didn’t look that old, but it was described as a “runt” in the world of trees.  In this case its stunted growth likely saved in from being logged with the rest of the marketable trees that were harvested in the 1930;s.  And more interesting it survived the fire that went through area forests in the 1700’s.  So how old is it?  It was discovered last year when the same class met and they took a core sample.  A student from last year’s class remembered it being over 500 years old, but they had to take the sample to the lab, where it was analyzed.  We will check on this and get as exact of an age is possible.
Shots Fired?  We were surprised to read in Friday’s Kitsap Sun that gun shots were fired “at a group of people early Thursday at the Almira Drive parking lot for the Illahee Preserve” around 2 am.  No one was hurt and eventually three people were arrested.

Stormwater Effects on Salmon.  The opening sentence of a recent Kitsap Sun article notes “Stormwater runoff from highways appears to contain one or more unidentified compounds shown to be highly toxic to coho salmon and perhaps other salmon as well.”

Mystery compound found to kill coho salmon
Shortly after reading the article we jogged to view the well drilling rig at Troy Lane (see 1/24/13 Update) and noticed stormwater runoff from McWilliams that appeared to be a dirty black and took the following photos.  With two weeks without rain and the 0.3 inches we received that day, there was more than enough to clean off the pavement into the puddles alongside the roadway.  If it wasn’t for the article we would not have paid any attention to the dark colored puddles along side the road.
Illahee Film in Portland.  Today’s Portland Tribune has an article “Salmon’s story flows through three films”, one of which is the Illahee film “Saving Puget Sound One Watershed at a Time”, which will be shown tomorrow (Sunday) afternoon at the Clinton Street Theater.  See the following link for the details:  http://portlandtribune.com/pt/9-news/127190-salmons-story-flows-through-three-films

Jim Aho