The Kasilof River can be seen in June 2019. The Alaska Department of Natural Resources will acquire 309 acres of habitat along the river with funding from a federal conservation grant. (Clarion file)

The Kasilof River can be seen in June 2019. The Alaska Department of Natural Resources will acquire 309 acres of habitat along the river with funding from a federal conservation grant. (Clarion file)

State to acquire Kasilof wetlands for preservation project

The project in Kasilof will protect 283 acres of coastal wetland habitat in the Kasilof River Flats.

The Alaska Department of Natural Resources will acquire 309 acres of habitat along the Kasilof River following its receipt of a federal grant for the project.

In all, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service approved $338,600 for the project through its National Coastal Wetlands Conservation Grant program. That program aims to “protect, restore and enhance coastal wetland ecosystems and associated uplands” in coastal and Great Lakes states and in U.S. territories.

The program, which annually provides grants of up to $1 million, also awarded grants to projects in 13 other U.S. states. The Kasilof River land acquisition was the only project recipient in Alaska in 2021.

According to the list of recipient project summaries, the project in Kasilof will protect 283 acres of coastal wetland habitat in the Kasilof River Flats, including 2.25 miles of river shoreline. More than 85% of the project area is composed of “nationally declining” coastal wetland types.

Wildlife that stand to benefit from the project include rock sandpipers, chinook, sockeye, coho and pink salmon and Cook Inlet beluga whales, which are federally endangered. The project is also expected to provide migratory, nesting and overwintering habitat for 165 bird species, 37 of which are identified in the Alaska Wildlife Action Plan as “Species of Greatest Need.”

Once acquired, the property will be added to an existing state park unity for wildlife habitat and “compatible” public recreation.

In total, the project is estimated to cost $492,511, including the $388,600 awarded by the grant and a local match of $153,911.

More information on the grant program can be found at fws.gov/coastal/CoastalGrants.

Reach reporter Ashlyn O’Hara at ashlyn.ohara@peninsulaclarion.com.

More in News

Vice President Tyson Cox speaks during a meeting of the Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly in Soldotna, Alaska, on Tuesday, June 4, 2024. (Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion)
Assembly to discuss short-term rental tax on Tuesday

The resolution describes a proposed tax of up to 12%

Photo provided by Special Olympics Alaska Central Peninsula
The Special Olympics Alaska Central Peninsula team stands together for a photo during the Summer State Games in Anchorage.
Area athletes claim 45 medals at Special Olympics Alaska Summer Games

The Central Peninsula team fielded 17 local athletes in the competition

tease
Homer, Seldovia to celebrate summer solstice

Events will be held starting June 20

A freshly stocked rainbow trout swims in Johnson Lake during Salmon Celebration on Wednesday, May 10, 2023, at Johnson Lake in Kasilof, Alaska. (Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion)
Slow sockeye fishing at Russian River, good rainbow trout at Kenai Lake

A Northern Kenai Fishing Report published by the State Department of Fish… Continue reading

Council member James Baisden speaks in favor of an amendment to the City of Kenai’s budget that would add funds for construction of a veteran’s memorial column in the Kenai Cemetery during a meeting of the Kenai City Council in Kenai, Alaska, on Wednesday, June 5, 2024. (Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion)
Kenai budget amendment allocates funds for veterans’ columbarium in cemetery expansion

A columbarium is an aboveground structure that houses cremated remains

Council member Alex Douthit speaks in favor of an amendment to the CIty of Kenai’s budget that would reduce funds allocated to the Storefront and Streetscape Improvement Program during a meeting of the Kenai City Council in Kenai, Alaska, on Wednesday, June 5, 2024. (Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion)
Funding reduced for City of Kenai’s storefront improvement grant program

Just over a year after the City of Kenai established its Storefront… Continue reading

Mount Redoubt can be seen across Cook Inlet from North Kenai Beach on Thursday, July 2, 2022. (Erin Thompson/Peninsula Clarion file photo)
Hilcorp only bidder in Cook Inlet oil and gas lease sale

8 million acres were available for bidding in the sale, spread across Cook Inlet and the Alaska Peninsula region

Council member Phil Daniel speaks during a meeting of the Kenai City Council in Kenai, Alaska, on Wednesday, June 5, 2024. (Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion)
City of Kenai approves budget

A draft of the document says that the city expects to bring in around $19.5 million in the next year, and spend $20.2 million

A sockeye salmon rests atop a cooler at the mouth of the Kasilof River on Monday, June 26, 2023, in Kasilof, Alaska. (Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion)
A sockeye salmon rests atop a cooler at the mouth of the Kasilof River on Monday, June 26, 2023, in Kasilof, Alaska. (Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion)
Kasilof River personal use setnet opening delayed

Low counts for Kenai River early-run king salmon motivate restriction

Most Read