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First and Foremost, Wilderness is Home

Posted on May 17, 2024 in Conservation News, WA Wild Blog
On this Endangered Species Day, it’s important to remember that when we talk about Wilderness areas, first and foremost, these places are home. Home to the Indigenous Peoples who have lived in kinship and reciprocal care with this land since time immemorial. Home to our plant and animal relatives. Home to the diversity of experiences—love, loss, joy, heartbreak, harm, repair—that have occurred here. And home to those of us who may have shallower roots, but have just as much of a responsibility to respectfully coexist within the larger system of life.

Unfortunately, we are failing to live up to that responsibility. Of the 21,000+ animal species that call our state boundaries home, the WA Department of Fish and Wildlife has identified 268 species as “species of concern” and listed 37 species as Endangered. Among those, 13* are also listed as Endangered under the Federal Endangered Species Act (ESA).
(*19 total species of animal found in Washington are listed under the Federal ESA)

Many of us are familiar with the plight of our Southern Resident Orcas and the challenges facing our salmon, but today, we would like to highlight some lesser-known animals that also deserve our attention.

We work so hard to protect our remaining wild lands and waters because the health and well-being of everyone who calls Washington home is at the core of our mission at Washington Wild. For many endangered and threatened species today, habitat destruction, fragmentation, and degradation are the most serious and imminent threats they face.