Rio Grande Village Wetlands Restoration

Photo provided by Mike MarvinsPhoto provided by Courtney Lyons-Garcia/BBC
Rio Grande Village Wetlands Restoration
Debuted: 
November, 2010
Amount Raised: 
$210,000
Top Donors: 
The Trull Foundation, The Brown Foundation, The Meadows Foundation, National Fish and Wildlife Foundation

For five years, the Conservancy has worked with the Park to restore over 55 acres of wetlands in the Rio Grande Village area of the Park. 

This project is restoring Rio Grande riparian bird habitat to a disturbed site near the Rio Grande in Big Bend National Park.  Agricultural-era earthen berms constructed prior to Park establishment that alter natural surface and ground water conditions will be removed, natural soil contours will be reestablished, and native riparian vegetation, including cottonwoods and willows, will be established on the five-acre site. Riparian bird species native to the southwestern U.S. and northern Mexico will find valuable habitat at the site following restoration. The site is adjacent to the popular Rio Grande Village campground, thus birdwatchers will find the site particularly valuable and accessible. Additionally, restoration of hydrologic conditions benefits the federally endangered Big Bend mosquitofish by restoring natural surface and groundwater dynamics to the site, which is just upstream of wetlands containing the fish.

The project includes three phases: 

1) Planning and design, including topographic survey and engineering plan production

2) Implementation of plan by recontouring soil surface using earthmoving equipment

3) Revegetation of site with native riparian tree overstory and grassland understory 

CURRENT FUNDRAISING PROJECT:
Now that the restoration's final phase is underway, the Conservancy is raising funds to improve the interpretation of the area by updating the Rio Grande Village Visitor Center.  This $250,000 project is a partnership with the Park, and the Conservancy is actively raising funds to completed the project by mid-2017.  Please contact Courtney at friendsdirector@yahoo.com if you would like to make a donation to this project.

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