Welcome to the Nisqually Delta Restoration Project website. This site is dedicated to sharing up-to-date information about the land, plants and animals of the Nisqually River Delta, and how they have responded to large-scale restoration projects in the area.

The river’s delta is protected by Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge, making it one of the few remaining undeveloped river deltas in the area. The intact estuary habitat provides refuge for fish, migratory birds, insects, and other wildlife.


The Nisqually Watershed is located between Olympia and Tacoma, WA. It begins on the glaciers of Mount Rainier and flows into Puget Sound at the Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge. Source: Nisqually Indian Tribe Department of Natural Resources

From the late 1800s to 2009, the Delta was surrounded by miles of dikes that had been installed in an attempt to produce fertile farmland. This shifted the local ecology from a salt-water dominated ecosystem to freshwater marsh and agricultural habitat. In 2009, a major restoration project took place to remove the dikes and restore tidal influence to the Delta. In addition to these refuge-wide restoration efforts, the Nisqually Indian Tribe and Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge have collaborated to restore the Delta to its historic state since 1996. Visit “About the Project” to learn more the history of the Nisqually Delta Restoration.

The restoration efforts are the result of many partnerships, with major funding and contributions provided by the Nisqually Indian Tribe, Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge, and Ducks Unlimited. Monitoring efforts are spearheaded by the Nisqually Indian Tribe, Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge and US Geological Survey.

This website is currently under construction–please bear with us as it is further developed!