Vital Signs

The Puget Sound Vital Signs are measures of ecosystem health that guide the assessment of progress toward Puget Sound recovery goals. They were adopted by the Puget Sound Partnership at the state of Washington to help guide local, state and federal ecosystem recovery efforts.

--Source: Puget Sound Partnership

Puget Sound Partnership Vital Sign wheel

OVERVIEW

Puget Sound Vital Signs

The Puget Sound Vital Signs are measures of ecosystem health that guide the assessment of progress toward Puget Sound recovery goals. They were adopted by the Puget Sound Partnership at the state of Washington to help guide local, state and federal ecosystem recovery efforts. Each of the six Puget Sound recovery goals are expressed with one or more Vital Signs. Vital Signs represent an important component of the ecosystem (e.g. marine water, economic vitality). Each component is, in turn, represented by one or more indicators. The indicators are specific measures of Puget Sound conditions, including human wellbeing, while ecosystem recovery targets are policy statements that express desired future conditions for human health and quality of life, species and food webs, habitats, water quantity, and water.

RELATED ARTICLES

Heartbeat line overlays Seattle Skyline from Alki Beach. Graphic: Puget Sound Institute w/ copyrighted images
12/7/2016

Implementation Strategies will target Puget Sound ‘Vital Signs’

New EPA-funded Implementation Strategies are designed to target Puget Sound recovery in the most direct and coordinated way ever conducted by state and federal agencies. We report on how these strategies will affect Puget Sound’s Vital Signs for years to come, and why you should care (a lot).

Report cover
11/1/2021

State of the Sound report 2021

The 2021 State of the Sound is the Puget Sound Partnership’s seventh biennial report to the Legislature on progress toward the recovery of Puget Sound. The document reports on both the status of the Partnership's recovery efforts and a suite of ecosystem indicators referred to as the Puget Sound Vital Signs.

Strands of bull kelp near Smith Island in Puget Sound. Photo by Eric Wagner.
9/30/2021

New studies aid kelp conservation

Bull kelp is easily recognized by its wavy leaves and long, floating stipes that sometimes wash ashore like slimy green bullwhips. In that sense, it is one of the more familiar types of seaweed in Puget Sound. But as kelp forests decline throughout the region, scientists are finding that there is much about this increasingly rare species that remains a mystery.

Pacific Oyster (Crassostrea gigas). Photo by Don Rothaus. Courtesy of the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife.
9/7/2021

Regional perspectives on the effectiveness of Puget Sound shellfish recovery actions

A 2021 report commissioned by the Washington State Department of Natural Resources identifies potential actions at the state or local level, or in combination, that could further bolster shellfish bed recovery in support of the Puget Sound Partnership's shellfish bed recovery target.

Golden-crowned kinglet (Regulus satrapa). Photo: Minette Layne (CC BY-NC 2.0)
6/23/2021

Golden-crowned kinglets in Puget Sound have seen a steep decline since 1968

The number of golden-crowned kinglets in the Puget Sound watershed has declined by more than 91% over a recent 50-year period, according to data from the North American Breeding Bird Survey. The data was reported by the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, which tracks the information for the Puget Sound Partnership’s terrestrial bird indicator. The indicator was established to monitor the health of Puget Sound’s species and food webs.