Press Release
Service Seeks Public Comment on Safe Harbor Agreement for Marbled Murrelet in Washington State
Agreement Advances Conservation for the Threatened Bird and Offers Regulatory Assurances to Private Landowner
Media Contacts

LACEY, Wash. – Weyerhaeuser Timber Holdings, Inc. has developed a Safe Harbor Agreement with the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (Service) for marbled murrelets, a federally threatened seabird, on its private land in Washington.

A notice of availability for the draft agreement and an associated Environmental Assessment will formally publish in the Federal Register on October 12, 2022, opening a 30-day public comment period.

Safe Harbor Agreements are voluntary, non-regulatory conservation tools for private landowners who wish to support recovery of plants and animals listed as threatened or endangered under the Endangered Species Act. In exchange for agreeing to implement the terms of the Safe Harbor Agreement, the applicant receives assurances the Service will not require different or additional conservation efforts for the species in the future.

Lands proposed for inclusion in the new Safe Harbor Agreement consist of 637,021 acres located in Whatcom, Skagit, Snohomish, King, Pierce, Thurston, Lewis, Cowlitz, Wahkiakum, Pacific, and Grays Harbor counties.

Under the proposed Safe Harbor Agreement, Weyerhaeuser will continue to manage their forest lands for timber production, while protecting all previously documented occupied marbled murrelet habitat, and voluntarily agreeing to defer harvest of certain other areas identified as potential marbled murrelet nesting habitat on their lands. If implemented under the proposed terms, the Safe Harbor Agreement will provide a net conservation benefit for the rare species.

The marbled murrelet was listed under the Endangered Species Act in 1992. The bird spends most of its life in marine waters. Unlike many of its seabird relatives, however, the species nests in forests up to several dozen miles inland. It is found along the Pacific Coast from Alaska to central California.

To request further information or submit written comments, please use one of the following methods, and note that your information request or comments are in reference to “Weyerhaeuser SHA in Washington.”

  • Email:
  • U.S. Mail:

    Public Comments Processing, Attn: FWS-R1-ES-2022-N047

    U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

    Washington Fish and Wildlife Office

    510 Desmond Drive SE, Suite 102

    Lacey, WA 98503


View the draft Safe Harbor Agreement

View the draft Environmental Assessment

View the Federal Register notice

Story Tags

Endangered and/or Threatened species
Water birds