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Project Updates

(Above) Students from the Shasta Roots & Shoots Program help River Partners at Turtle Bay Exploration Park.

Spring Planting Season Progress

Thanks to the efforts of River Partners’ staff and several student groups, about 400 acres were put into active restoration this spring. Here are a few of the highlights.

In Redding, after a year of invasive weed management, River Partners installed small trees, native bushes, understory species, and grasses at Turtle Bay Exploration Park. Students from the Shasta Roots and Shoots program visited the project and helped plant native grass plugs on this 47-acre restoration site.

Near Butte City, the second phase of the Del Rio Wildland Preserve restoration began in May. Thanks to the assistance from Boy Scout Troop #2, 1,000 native plants and trees were dedicated to North State Public Radio’s members. Congratulations to Tyler Rice and Griffin Moran for organizing the planting days for their Eagle Scout projects.

Near Caswell Memorial State Park, the riparian brush rabbits will benefit from the new network of shrubs and native vegetation at the Buffington Unit of the San Joaquin River National Wildlife Refuge. This newly planted 50-acre area will serve as a re-introduction site for these endangered mammals. Also at the San Joaquin River NWR, River Partners staff completed a 41-acre planting at the Hagemann Unit.

Working with Vino Farms, a vineyard near Lodi dedicated to sustainability, River Partners completed a restoration planting on 23 acres of private land along the Mokelumne River. Students from the Center for Land-Based Learning’s SLEWS program participated in a planting event at this project.

May 10th Kicked-Off Canoe Tour Season

Paddlers from Sacramento, Solano County, Yuba City, Oroville, Paradise and Chico joined River Partners for its first canoe tour of the 2008 season. Launching at Butte City, more than 31 kayaks and canoes floated down a 5-mile stretch of the Sacramento River, where they saw cliff, bank and tree swallows, ospreys, killdeer, otter slides, terns, herons, and egrets. Stopping near the Thomas Unit of the SRNWR, participants listened to Dr. Tom Griggs talk about salmon, riparian restoration, and meandering river processes. At the end of the tour, Dr. Griggs gave a brief overview of River Partners’ work at the Drumheller Slough Unit, SRNWR.

10th Anniversary Celebration Held April 11th

At least 270 River Partners’ sponsors, members, staff and community members enjoyed an evening of music, food, and silent auction bidding at River Partners’ 10th Anniversary Dinner. During the event, River Partners founders, Barney Flynn and John Carlon, honored their colleague, Scott Clemons, for his dedication to conservation and habitat protection during his tenure at the Wildlife Conservation Board. 

Bidwell Ranch Conservation and Mitigation Bank Project

While River Partners prepares the documents necessary to establish a conservation and mitigation bank at Bidwell Ranch, Chico CA, the City of Chico and River Partners continue to host public meetings and share progress reports.

During the third Citizen Work Group session on January 31, 2008, staff members Dan Efseaff and Colleen Martin provided an overview of the Prospectus and Preliminary Mitigation Bank Package, scenarios and management options for the site, and the potential resources and species to be protected by the bank. Paul Kirk (North State Resources) discussed the analysis of long-term management costs for the project, while Greg White (Pacific Legacy) discussed the cultural resources study.

On Thursday, May 15, 2008, River Partners and the City of Chico presented the management and conceptual plans to the Mitigation Bank Review Team (MBRT), which included representatives from US Army Corps of Engineers, Environmental Protection Agency and California Department of Fish and Game. The MBRT were receptive to the conceptual plans and encouraged the Project Team to proceed with fine-tuning the details.

Additional information for the Bidwell Ranch Conservation and Mitigation Bank Project is available here.

North State Public Radio Listeners Prefer Native Plants

KCHO 91.7 North State Public Radio again teammed up with River Partners for their Spring Membership Drive. With “Sustaining Community” as the drive’s theme, more than 500 public radio supporters elected to have a bird or bee-friendly native species planted in their name by River Partners in lieu of receiving a thank you gift. Boy Scout Troop #2 installed these plants on May 10 and May 18 at the Del Rio Wildland Preserve.

The above article originally appeared in the Spring 2008 issue of the River Partners Journal.