Backyard Habitat Certification Program

The Clackamas Soil and Water Conservation District announces the expansion of the Backyard Habitat Certification Program in Clackamas County!

The Backyard Habitat Certification Program is a joint project of the Audubon Society of Portland and Columbia Land Trust. The program provides assistance and incentives to urban residents to restore native wildlife habitat in their backyards.

Staff from Clackamas Soil and Water Conservation District and the Backyard Habitat Certification Program have been planning for over two years with the goal of expanding the current boundaries of the program. The new boundaries will include more areas of urban Clackamas County. Financial and technical support from the District has finally made this goal a reality.

Phase 1 & 2 Expansion

The Backyard Habitat Certification Program has serviced landowners throughout Portland, Gresham and Fairview, within Multnomah County, and the City of Lake Oswego. Now with the implementation of Phase 1 of the expansion, the program will extend deeper into Clackamas County to include the areas of Milwaukie, Oak Grove, Jennings Lodge, and West Linn. The Phase 1 expansion covers the urban portions of Clackamas County west of 205 (excluding Gladstone which is included in Phase 2).

The Phase 2 expansion will take place in 2018 and will cover all of the zip codes within the urban growth boundary.

To be eligible for the program, properties must be less than one acre in size, and occur within those targeted areas. Program participants can receive a full suite of program services; from site assessments and high-quality technical assistance, discounts on native plants and books, to eventually earning one’s very own Backyard Habitat Certification plaque.

Demand for this service has been high for the past several years. Interested landowners should sign up at Backyard Habitat Certification Program website to get on the list. Clackamas County landowners outside of the Phase I target areas should still enroll in the program. These landowners will be placed on a waiting list.

Benefits of the Backyard Habitat Program

The Clackamas Soil and Water Conservation District has long been interested in bringing the benefits of this program to landowners in Clackamas County. There has been high demand for this valuable and effective program. Providing habitat connectivity between existing natural areas in our urban centers with those in our rural communities is important for the movement of wildlife, including pollinators.

Three levels of certification are offered: Silver, Gold, and Platinum. A qualified technician will come out for a site visit and help determine which elements are right for individuals and their yards. Landowners can work toward higher certification levels in years to come and enjoy the array of wildlife their yard supports. Certification criteria address five program elements which reflect District concerns and values:

  • Invasive Weeds
  • Native Plants
  • Pesticide Reduction
  • Stormwater Management
  • Wildlife Stewardship

Join the happy faces below by enrolling in the in the Backyard Habitat Certification Program today!

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