Island Partners Conservation Easement

Orcas Island

Year Protected: 1996

Land Protected: 17 acres

Public Benefits: Bald eagle nesting site, forest

A forever wild conservation easement, donated to the Preservation Trust by Carlyle MacHarg in 1996, has protected an active bald eagle nesting site on Orcas Island.  The 17-acre plot of land at Diamond Point covers a portion of three parcels of an eight-tract development.  The forested hillside, visible from the ferry, lies on the south side of Orcas (just west of the entrance to East Sound).

Under terms of the agreement with the Preservation Trust, no residential structures will be sited on the slopes of the protected property, and the area surrounding the bald eagle nest tree will be conserved in perpetuity.

“We’re developing so much of the islands that it’s important to preserve habitat for eagles and other wildlife,” said MacHarg at the time of the donation.  “Conservation easements protect habitat and ‘quality of life’ for eagles and for people who move to the islands to capture or enjoy those same qualities.”