Appreciating Nature in the Time of COVID-19

Rhododendron blooms in the forest. Photo by Don Paulson.

Dear GPC members and supporters,  

These are certainly difficult times we face as a community. And now, after more than two weeks under the stay-at-home order, the long-term ramifications brought on by COVID-19 are no doubt dawning on all of us. But while we are holed up in our homes trying to make the best of what is truly a discouraging situation, we can take solace in the knowledge that the local wildlife we care so deeply about continues to enjoy the habitat provided by GPC’s nature preserves.     

With a little imagination one can picture a mother black bear and her young cubs feeding on some tasty sedges and skunk cabbage in the wetlands of Grovers Creek Preserve. 

Or imagine a hungry cougar catching the scent of a Columbian black-tailed deer on the steep, forested hills along the Hahobas Shoreline Preserve.

Or simply conjure up an image of a fat, fuzzy bumble bee merrily making its way from a red-flowering currant to a salmonberry bush, blissfully unaware of the trials we humans are facing.  

Well, these and millions of similar encounters are happening every day on GPC preserves and conservation easements. These fundamental interactions that sustain the wildlife we all value are made possible by you.  

Thank you for your commitment to protect and steward the most ecologically valuable lands in our region. 

It is because of you that thousands of acres are available for the plants, animals, fungi, slime molds (yes, they are awesome), and other organisms that call these wild places home. Hopefully soon, they will be reopened for us humans to enjoy as well, but while Governor Inslee’s “Stay Home, Stay Healthy” order is in place, all GPC preserves are closed to the public.    

Please know that our small but dedicated staff of eight continues to work full-time from home.   

  • Our conservation team is hard at work writing and submitting grant applications to purchase new preserve lands.   
  • Our stewardship team is updating management plans, completing baseline work, and becoming FAA-certified drone pilots so they can more effectively monitor GPC preserves.  
  • The rest of the team is addressing the uncertainty of our events and NextGen summer camp and creating new ways to engage and connect the community to nature while following social distancing rules.   

Now more than ever, your support will sustain GPC’s core mission to protect the cherished lands and waters we all love. If you are able, please make a meaningful gift today.  

Your investment in our vital lands ensures homes for wildlife, the scenic viewscapes that we now ponder from our backyards, and the greenspaces that create a healthier community for all of us.   

Thank you all again and please stay safe and healthy, 

 

 

Nathan Daniel
Executive Director

Nate working in his home office.