USFWS Pacific > Collections > National Wildlife Refuge System

Willapa National Wildlife Refuge is over 15,000 acres of tidelands, temperate rainforest, ocean beaches, and small streams. It also includes several rare remnants of old growth coastal cedar forest. The Refuge preserves habitat for spawning wild salmon, hundreds of thousands of migrating shorebirds, and threatened and endangered species such as the marbled murrelet. The Refuge is a great place to see what the Pacific Northwest looked like 100 years ago.

The Refuge is located in southwestern Washington on Willapa Bay, one of the most pristine estuaries in the United States. Willapa Bay is the second largest estuary on the Pacific Coast and includes over 260 square miles of water surface.The Refuge was established in 1937 to protect migrating and wintering populations of brant, waterfowl, shorebirds, and other migratory birds. The Refuge was established at a time when many estuaries were rapidly being destroyed by diking, draining, dredging, sedimentation, and pollution.

The Refuge preserves a number of unique ecosystems including diverse salt marshes, rich tideflats, rain-drenched old growth forest, and dynamic coastal dunes.

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Willapa NWR

Willapa NWR

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