digplanet beta 1: Athena
Share digplanet:


Applied sciences






















Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge
IUCN category IV (habitat/species management area)
Nisqually NWR 28077.JPG
Map showing the location of Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge
Map showing the location of Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge
Location in Washington state
Location Thurston and Pierce counties, Washington, USA
Nearest city Lacey, WA
Coordinates 47°04′57″N 122°43′18″W / 47.08250°N 122.72167°W / 47.08250; -122.72167Coordinates: 47°04′57″N 122°43′18″W / 47.08250°N 122.72167°W / 47.08250; -122.72167[1]
Area 4,529.21 acres (1,833 ha)[2]
Established 1974 (1974)[3]
Visitors 137,000 (in 2004)
Governing body United States Fish and Wildlife Service
Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge

The Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge is a wildlife preserve operated by the United States Fish and Wildlife Service on the Nisqually River Delta near Puget Sound in northeastern Thurston County, Washington and northwestern Pierce County, Washington. The refuge is located just off Interstate 5, between the cities of Tacoma and Olympia.

The 12.6 km2 refuge was created in 1974 to provide habitat and nesting areas for waterfowl and other migratory birds. It includes a protected estuary, salt marshes and open mudflats, freshwater marshes, open grassland, and riparian woodland and brush. An additional 3.2 square kilometres (1.2 sq mi) is protected by the disjoint Black River Unit on a tributary of the Chehalis River.


The wildlife refuge is home to the Nisqually River Delta, which has the unique status as Washington’s largest relatively undisturbed estuary. The confluence of the freshwater Nisqually River and the saltwater south Puget Sound has created a variety of unique environments, each rich in nutrients and natural resources for the local wildlife. The delta provides habitats for more than 300 different species of fish and wildlife.[4]

In 1904 the Brown Farm Dike, five miles long, was created to protect farmland from tidal surge, resulting in a loss of important habitat for young fish, birds and marine mammals such as harbor seals. As part of a long running project to restore the estuary, in 2009 a new 10,000 foot dike was installed behind the old dike and four miles of the old Brown Farm Dike were removed. This enabled the tidal flows to reclaim 762 acres to the estuary.

Sea life features 24 species of fish located in one of three habitats: riverine, estuarine or the Nisqually Reach nearshore. Large populations of fall Chinook salmon, starry flounder and shiner perch offer a sampling of the fish that are abundantly available.[5] The saltmarshes and mudflats are located outside of the dikes. Rich in nutrients, they are the home to clams, crabs, shrimp and worms, which in turn feed ducks, gulls and herons.

Over 20,000 birds, made up of 275 different migrating species, use the freshwater marshes and grasslands for breeding, resting or wintering. The most abundant bird types include raptors, shorebirds and songbirds. Larger animals such as hawks and coyotes feast in the grassland due to the presence of mice and voles.

The riparian woodland and brush habitats contain many amphibians, mammals and reptiles.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge". Geographic Names Information System. United States Geological Survey. 
  2. ^ "Annual Report of Lands as of September 30, 2013" (PDF). United States Fish and Wildlife Service. 
  3. ^ "About the Refuge". Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. 
  4. ^ "Habitat". Nisqually National Reserve. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Retrieved February 25, 2015. 
  5. ^ "Fish". Nisqually National Reserve. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Retrieved February 25, 2015. 

External links[edit]

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nisqually_National_Wildlife_Refuge — Please support Wikipedia.
This page uses Creative Commons Licensed content from Wikipedia. A portion of the proceeds from advertising on Digplanet goes to supporting Wikipedia.

228 news items

The Olympian

The Olympian
Sun, 26 Jul 2015 07:37:30 -0700

The Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge is a great destination when you want to get outdoors and only have a few hours to spend. There are several miles of trails for hiking, a multitude of places to watch resident and migrant birds and spots to look ...


Thu, 16 Jul 2015 06:07:30 -0700

indian summer logo The National Wildlife Refuge System is 112 years old, with protected lands stretching from shore to shore of the country. For those of us in Thurston County, we are lucky enough to have one of the more scenic refuges right in our ...
The Olympian
Sat, 04 Jul 2015 05:00:35 -0700

Experts will give talks on environmental topics ranging from bees to polar bear to effects of climate change during the 28th annual Summer Lecture Series at Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge. The series kicks off Wednesday, will run through August ...

The Olympian

The Olympian
Fri, 17 Jul 2015 10:02:41 -0700

Nisqually Stream Stewards help with a variety of project, such as when volunteer David Anderson of Roy worked with Teresa Moon, project manager with the South Sound Salmon Enhancement Group,to place sandbags and fabric barriers to protect Mashel ...

Indian Country Today Media Network

Indian Country Today Media Network
Wed, 20 May 2015 07:31:19 -0700

The Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge was established in 1974 to protect the Nisqually River Delta, a biologically rich and diverse area at the southern end of Puget Sound. In addition to renaming the wildlife refuge, the bill would make the location ...


Tue, 10 Feb 2015 16:00:00 -0800

KING 5 reporter Dan Cassuto was out at Nisqually National Wildlife Refugeon Monday and took some gorgeous shots of baby Great Horned Owls. Cassuto says the nest is about a half-mile from the parking lot along the loop trail. According to the Nisqually ...
The Olympian (blog)
Sun, 12 Jul 2015 23:56:15 -0700

These daily rail shipments also pass over the Nisqually River a scant two miles upstream of our habitat jewel, the Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge. That BNSF trestle over the river was constructed in 1912. A derailment and spill on that ancient ...
Tue, 07 Jul 2015 00:07:30 -0700

... as part of the Ebey's Landing National Historic Reserve on Whidbey Island near Coupeville. Among seven other projects in Washington state it would fund are easements and property acquisition at Mount St. Helens, the Nisqually National Wildlife ...

Oops, we seem to be having trouble contacting Twitter

Support Wikipedia

A portion of the proceeds from advertising on Digplanet goes to supporting Wikipedia. Please add your support for Wikipedia!

Searchlight Group

Digplanet also receives support from Searchlight Group. Visit Searchlight