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San Juan Preservation trust announces new, 80-acre preserve on Blakely Island.

The 80-acre preserve on Blakely Island. - San Juan Preservation Trust
The 80-acre preserve on Blakely Island.
— image credit: San Juan Preservation Trust

There is a new addition to the lands conserved under the San Juan Preservation Trust. This week the trust announced the addition of an 80-acre preserve on Blakely Island.

Adjacent to 2,310 acres of land already conserved by the trust, the property is waterfront with over half a mile of shoreline. Lying along the west coast of Blakely, the land is viewable from the Washington State ferry route between Anacortes and Lopez Island.

The property boasts an array of Garry oak grasslands, clumps of Prickly Pear cactus, and old growth forest. The property has long been one of the trust's top conservation priorities.

Working closely with Tom and Christine Crowley (the adjacent landowners) on a cost-sharing conservation solution, the trust paid $350,000 for the property - a little more than 1/3 its appraised market value. The difference in value was donated to the project by the Crowley family.

This new preserve will be maintained in its natural state in perpetuity. Including adjacent properties previously protected by the Crowley family with trust easements, this addition creates a network of 2,390 acres of conservation land on Blakely Island. Altogether, the Crowley family and the Preservation Trust have worked to permanently protect over half of this 4,435-acre island (the fifth largest island in San Juan County).

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