Mima Mounds Natural Area Preserve

Littlerock, Washington

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One of the few native grassland prairies left in western Washington is contained in the 445-acre Mima Mounds Natural Area Preserve. This prairie and the mysterious origins of the roughly 6-foot-tall mounds are enough to draw thousands of annual visitors to this small preserve, but it also holds some of the best birding, butterfly-watching, and wildflower gazing in the southern reaches of the Puget Trough. After a short walk through the wooded area, the trail leads to a large man-made concrete mound that offers information about the site as well as a viewing platform at the top of the stairs. Scanning the prairie from the top of the stairs will give a good indication of what birds are around before you set out on either the 0.5-mile interpretive trail or one of the longer and more rustic trails into the prairie. Habitats: Prairie, coniferous forest. Specialty birds: White-tailed Kite; Bald Eagle; Peregrine Falcon; Band-tailed Pigeon; Shorteared and Northern Pygmy-Owls; Vaux’s Swift; Rufous Hummingbird; Pileated Woodpecker; Red-breasted Sapsucker; Pacific-slope Flycatcher; Hutton’s and Cassin’s Vireos; Western Bluebird; Hermit Warbler.

Mima Mounds Natural Area Preserve Professional Review and Guide

"One of the few native grassland prairies left in western Washington is contained in the 445-acre Mima Mounds Natural Area Preserve. This prairie and the mysterious origins of the roughly 6-foot-tall mounds are enough to draw thousands of annual visitors to this small preserve, but it also holds some of the best birding, butterfly-watching, and wildflower gazing in the southern reaches of the Puget Trough. After a short walk through the wooded area, the trail leads to a large man-made concrete mound that offers information about the site as well as a viewing platform at the top of the stairs. Scanning the prairie from the top of the stairs will give a good indication of what birds are around before you set out on either the 0.5-mile interpretive trail or one of the longer and more rustic trails into the prairie. Habitats: Prairie, coniferous forest.

Specialty birds: White-tailed Kite; Bald Eagle; Peregrine Falcon; Band-tailed Pigeon; Shorteared and Northern Pygmy-Owls; Vaux’s Swift; Rufous Hummingbird; Pileated Woodpecker; Red-breasted Sapsucker; Pacific-slope Flycatcher; Hutton’s and Cassin’s Vireos; Western Bluebird; Hermit Warbler."

Activity Type: Birding
Nearby City: Littlerock
Trail Type: Several options
Best Times: Best spring and fall migration, winter for raptors
Trailhead Elevation: 10 feet
Top Elevation: feet
Local Contacts: Washington Department of Natural Resources
Driving Directions: Directions to Mima Mounds Natural Area Preserve

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May 2018