Stewardship – Habitat Enhancement
Western areas of the United States are particularly dry due to low and erratic precipitation. The scarcity of water is ever more important as wetlands perform several ecosystem services – functions valuable to wildlife and society – such as groundwater recharge, flood flow alteration, stream bank stabilization, and sediment and nutrient removal.
Wetland habitats comprise a tiny percentage of the landscape, yet they provide benefits to a significant percentage of wildlife species. The value of water in this dry landscape justifies the need for wetland enhancement and conservation projects. In fact, several national plans are written to guide these efforts, including the North American Waterfowl Management Plan (NAWMP), the North American Waterbird Conservation Plan (NAWCP), the United States Shorebird Conservation Plan (USSCP), and North American Bird Conservation Initiative (NABCI). Additionally, specific funds are set aside each year for wetland habitat projects from initiatives such as the USDA’s Wetlands Reserve Program (WRP) and the North American Wetlands Conservation Act (NAWCA).
RMBO has participated in numerous projects on playas and other seasonal wetlands, lakes and reservoirs, streams and rivers, springs and wet meadows. Common practices used to conserve or enhance wetlands areas include fencing to better manage grazing, providing alternate stock water sources, eradicating invasive weeds like Russian olive and tamarisk (salt cedar), and re-vegetating areas to control erosion.
Ph: 970-482-1707 ext.12
Program Management Specialist
Ph: 970-482-1707 ext. 21