Little Manzanita Bay is a peaceful area on Bainbridge Island and the community wants it to continue.
So he formed a non-profit group called Friends of Little Manzanita Bay and is seeking island-wide support.
Manzanita Creek is one of only two remaining creeks on BI where adult salmon have been seen in the past three years. According to their website, spawning adult coho and chum salmon, cutthroat trout, and migrating juveniles roam the creek and its tributaries. Mother otters teach their young to compete with bald eagles, ospreys, kingfishers, terns and gulls for running fish.
People enjoy calm waters, too: kids on skimboards, seniors swim, kayakers socialize on the water, paddleboarders follow the creek upstream, and toddlers marvel at crabs in the sand on the beach. . There are no docks, and motorboats and jet skiers are rarely seen there due to its shallow waters, the website says.
One of the members, Victoria Kirkman, grew up there and is worried about the development potential. “You never know,” she says. By letting others know about this special place, Kirkman hopes others will join in and help preserve it.
The website also states: Little Manzanita Bay is so biologically important to salmon recovery that the Bainbridge Island Land Trust has received a $700,000 Puget Sound Salmon Recovery Priorities Grant. Individual plots are identified for protection to meet Chinook Salmon recovery objectives. It is designated critical habitat under the Endangered Species Act for chinook salmon, rockfish and killer whales. The bay is also considered critical fish habitat for coho, chinook and pink salmon.
The tides are a nursery for shellfish and other mud-dwelling invertebrates and an essential link in the food chain for a wide range of bird, mammal and fish species. While next to Manzanita Bay, it’s separate. It has no wharfs, while the big one has 31. It has one waterway full of fish, and the other has none. It empties at low tide, unlike the large one, according to the website.
To get involved, call 971-217-6752 or email FriendsofLittleManzanita [email protected]