Into the woods we went, for a meeting of the Lincoln Park Habitat Committee. You have to feel lucky when your meeting happens outdoors, and especially when it’s on a sunny winter day in Seattle.
The Committee is made up of Parks staff and leaders of the Seattle Nature Alliance and Friends of Lincoln Park. This group has met quarterly, since the fall of 2012, at the initiation of SNA, to talk about and look at the health of the forest in Lincoln Park. Issues have included mowing, reforestation, protection of large trees, reducing the impact of roads and vehicles in the park, and more…
Today was no different. We looked at some work recently done by Parks to narrow roadways and reduce intersection width, leading to an increase in the size of the surrounding forest. We’re not talking acres here, but every little bit of land returned to the forest is a positive. So there were some encouraging signs from Parks, as we had talked specifically about these areas in our meeting last fall.
We spent a good deal of time talking about mowing. Seattle Nature Alliance is concerned about the disturbance and damage that mowing causes to wildlife, like nesting birds, and the loss of areas which could be potential forest, if just left alone. Friends of Lincoln Park has to worry that their new small native plantings are not inadvertently mowed down. Lincoln Park is unique, in that it has landscaped and mowed areas right next to 80 acres of forest. And some mowing still occurs in certain locations within forested areas. Those were the areas we tried to make some decisions on today.
There is still plenty of work to be done, and we had our share of disagreements. But we made progress, and I believe everyone had a chance to express their concerns and priorities. We are thankful for the opportunity, and we look forward to the next time.