Watershed Resource Inventory Area

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WRIA's (alternately pronounced "Why-ruhs" or "Wry-uhs") are watershed units developed by Washington State Department of Ecology for ecological management purposes. They were the initial basis for the state-led limiting factors analysis that initiated Salmon Recovery, and they are used to organize Lead Entities but actual Chinook salmon recovery planning, as regulated by the National Marine Fisheries Service, is based on fish populations by watershed.

There are 19 WRIAs in the Salish Sea. They are smaller than Action Areas or the various versions of Oceanographic sub-basins, and use a different watershed boundary than the federal Hydrologic Unit Codes or HUCs. Much of the discrepency stems from how to parse the smaller coastal watershed found between the big watersheds.

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