Gregory A. Hicks, Protecting and Promoting Wildlife and Habitat on State and Private Land in Washington's Arid Interior, 4 Hastings W-Nw. J. Envtl. L. & Pol'y 13 (1997), https://digitalcommons.law.uw.edu/faculty-articles/372
Hastings West-Northwest Environmental Law & Policy
The object of this paper is to describe efforts now under way in the interior uplands of Washington State's Columbia Plain to restore and protect upland wildlife habitat and wildlife species in a busy and intensively used agricultural and range landscape. It is a landscape of greatly diminished ecological integrity, dominated by private land holdings, and where the remaining public lands are recovering from earlier periods of farming or grazing or still dedicated to productive use under lease or permit. Recent ecosystem assessments make clear that there are few areas of the Columbia Plain's original grass and shrub land which have not been significantly reshaped by farming and grazing. Any hope for preservation and extension of wildlife habitat and populations and for protection of remnant features of the native landscape will have to be realized against that background and against the background of increasingly intense uses of the land. The task will require substantial remediation of conditions created in the past, and ongoing efforts to accommodate the needs of wildlife in the face of development pressures. The great likelihood is that the protection and extension of wildlife habitat will occur not by restoring former biodiversity or reconstituting habitat structures where native vegetation dominates, but by cobbling together native and introduced elements to maintain a place for wildlife in a landscape already heavily reshaped by human use.
This article focuses on the habitat work being conducted under the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife's Upland Wildlife Restoration Program.