Similk Tidal Marsh Restoration Preliminary Design

The Similk Tidal Marsh Restoration Project is located at the northern end of Similk Bay along the southern shoreline of Fidalgo Island, Skagit County, Washington State, USA. This project will develop a preliminary design for a construction action that will breach a dike and roadway on Similk Beach to restore tidal flow and fish access to a 17-acre pocket estuary. Pocket estuaries are small tidal marshes in the nearshore environment that are not directly associated with a river or large stream, and they provide critical rearing habitats for juvenile Chinook salmon transitioning from freshwater to marine conditions. The potentially restored pocket estuary in Similk Bay is one of twelve pocket estuaries available to juvenile Chinook salmon within a one-day migration from the Skagit River delta, so this is a rare opportunity to restore an important habitat type. In addition to Chinook, this project will also likely benefit chum, coho, and salmon prey species including Pacific herring, surf smelt, and sand lance.