| Land Trust News
Students for SEEDLINGS* Stabilizing soil to prevent or diminish the size of mudslides;
Wood River Land Trust Student Conservation Council is raising funds to help restore public lands at Greenhorn from the effects of the Beaver Creek fire. All donations are tax-deductible and will help the U.S. Forest Service purchase sagebrush and bitterbrush seedlings and native seed mix. Look for the "Students for Seedlings" sign at area schools and retailers.
Replanting natives will help mitigate the impacts from the fire by:
* Decrease amount of silt in the river caused by runoff from rain
* Promote the growth of native species to help combat invasive
* Plant 20 acres with student volunteers in Fall 2014; and
* Raise $800 or more to buy plants/seeds and cover overhead
You can find donation boxes at the following locations:
* Atkinsons in Bellevue
* Woodside Elementary School
* Sage School
* Community School
* Main Street Market
* Hemingway Elementary School
* Hailey Elementary School.
East Fork Preservation Association Donates 7.5-acres to Wood River Land Trust
The Wood River Land Trust recently acquired the 7.5-acre East Fork Preserve from the East Fork Preservation Association. Previously considered as a possible site for low-income housing in 1998, the land was purchased by the East Fork Homeowners Association who then donated the land to Wood River Land Trust to assure permanent protection. The highly visible property, consisting mainly of sagebrush, bunch grass and conifers, is located at the southeast corner of state Highway 75 and East Fork Road.
Gateway Ranch Easement
This temporary sign on Hwy 75 shows the location of The Gateway Ranch Easement which the Land Trust acquired in November from an anonymous donor. The property is 85-acres and located at the northwest corner of the junction of Highways 75 and 20, south of Bellevue.
The ranch will be protected from development, and will remain part of the scenic agricultural view-shed.
Collaboration a First Step in Creating Healthy, Connected and Accessible Waters
The Wood River Land Trust and Trout Unlimited are collaborating to achieve critical large-scale river and watershed protection goals in the Wood River Valley. The new effort, is called Home Waters Initiative. In an effort to improve and maintain the health of the Big Wood River and its tributaries, the partners will lead an effort to assess the status of the Valley’s river system through a comprehensive analysis and shared research. We are at a critical time for translating scientific knowledge into impact on a strategic and broad scale— creating a healthy watershed for the benefit of our health and well-being and that of plants, fish and wildlife.
The time to act is now. Our rivers and streams are resilient and yet they face constant pressures from acts of nature and man. You need only look at the murky color of the Big Wood River since the recent mudslides as a result of the Beaver Creek Fire to see the enormous amount of silt being carried downstream over a number of miles. These occurrences will have long-term effects on our fishery, our local economy, and our health. The Wood River Land Trust is currently working on a comprehensive strategy with TU,which bring their national experience to bear on our regional issue.
The vision of the Home Waters Initiative is to create a sustainable waterscape for local communities. Such an outcome would provide ongoing natural benefits to residents and visitors including: clean water; broad biodiversity; productive agriculture and working lands; and recreational opportunities.
For decades these benefits have attracted people to Wood River Valley and enhanced the quality of life in the region. Now,however, we risk losing these benefits due to increasing significant threats to the watershed from the current drought conditions to population growth to the effects of a changing climate. The Home Waters Initiative is a strong example of how preserving the health of the Big Wood River and its tributaries can help both people and nature thrive.
Working Together to Accomplish More
Partnership is the key to achieving the goals of the Home Water Initiative and additional, wide-reaching conservation efforts.Trout Unlimited and Wood River Land Trust are working with conservation partners: The Nature Conservancy, Idaho Conservation League, to facilitate the vision of a healthy connected landscape in the region. These organizations meet regularly and work together for the betterment of our community. With the help of our donors, we hope to leave a lasting legacy of protected lands for future generations to enjoy as we do today.