Effective Conservation – It Takes a Team!

  |   CNLM News

What do a conservation organization, the Riverside County Flood Control & Water Conservation District (District), and the US Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) have in common? There may be more than one answer, but for the Center for Natural Lands Management, the response is the Palm Canyon Wash Preserve in the Coachella Valley. This 13-acre property is a great example of partner-driven conservation.

The Preserve is owned by the District, along with an adjacent 26.6-acre parcel that it is also protecting and managing. USFWS is overseeing the protection and appropriate management of both properties to ensure that its intended conservation purposes—protection of this increasingly rare desert wash landscape which also provides habitat for the endangered Casey’s June beetle—are fulfilled. CNLM manages the Palm Canyon Wash Preserve and has a conservation easement over it, giving CNLM the legal means and responsibility to help ensure that these precious natural resources persist.

USFWS, District, and CNLM staff discuss preserve protection and public outreach messaging (L-R: Jerry Aguirre, Joan Valle, Ginny Short, Vince James)

On January 30, 2024, representatives from these three partners met on the Preserve to discuss plans for enhanced protection and public outreach through information to be posted on a kiosk that will soon be installed onsite. Participating in these discussions were Vincent James, Division Supervisor of the Colorado Desert Division, USFWS; Lory Salazar-Velasquez, Fish and Wildlife Biologist (USFWS); Joan Valle, Chief of Regulatory, Riverside County Flood Control & Water Conservation District (District); Jerry Aguirre, Senior Flood Control Planner (District); Kathryn (Kat) Lopez, Assistant Flood Control Planner (District); Stacey Haggard, Associate Flood Control Planner (District); Ginny Short, Preserve Manager, CNLM; and Deborah Rogers, Co-Executive Director & Director of Conservation Science and Stewardship, CNLM.