Save Union Bay Association


Current Projects

Integrated Aquatic Vegetation Management Plan (IAVMP)

        In February, 2010, SUBA and Seattle Public Utilities (SPU) received a grant from Washington State Department of Ecology to develop a plan to manage invasive aquatic plants including Eurasian Milfoil, Brazilian Elodea, Curly Leafed Pondweed, and fragrant white water lilies in Union Bay. Location and density of all aquatic plants in UB are shown on these photo images.

        We developed a plan to reduce invasive aquatic weeds and improve wildlife habitat in Union Bay. Representatives from the city, state, university, neighborhood, and environmental groups participated in the planning process. SUBA contracted with Herrera Consulting to do an aquatic plant survey and to write an Integrative Invasive Aquatic Weed Management Plan (IAVMP). This project was completed in November 2010. The IAVMP was approved by the Washington State Department of Ecology in February 2011. The plan describes steps to reduce invasive aquatic weeds in Union Bay including use of herbicides and hand pulling. It also describes locations of sensitive native plants and steps to enable their survival. Click here to download a copy of the Union Bay IAVMP.

To download the 2014 Project Report, please click here.

Nutria Removal and Management Project

        Nutria are an invasive semi-aquatic rodent originally from South America. They were brought into the United States in 1930 to be raised for their fur. Because sale of their fur was not profitable and because a hurricane in Louisiana destroyed many nutria farms, they were released from their cages (accidentally or intentionally) and have migrated throughout this country. They are prolific breeders and overrun areas they inhabit. They graze on roots of wetland plants, denuding the shoreline, causing erosion, and destroying habitat of native birds and waterfowl. The US Congress has mandated that these rodents be eradicated.

        Nutria were first spotted in Union Bay in 2005. In October 2008, SUBA partnered with Portage Bay neighbors, Seattle Parks Department, and the University of Washington to initiate a nutria eradication program. The USDA Wildlife Services have undertaken trapping and removing nutria from Union Bay and Portage Bay. To date, over 300 nutria have been removed from this area. The USDA continues to monitor UB monthly for signs of nutria and to manage the current population levels. This nutria program has served as a model for other Washington state shoreline communities that are experiencing nutria over-population and destruction of native wetlands. For more information about nutria and the UB program, view slides. This Slide presentation was created by Justin Dayton of the USDA Wildlife Services. To begin a nutria program in your community go to the USDA’s Wildlife Damage Management website and click Contact: