What We Do
Any river is really the summation of the whole valley. To think of it as nothing but water is to ignore the greater part.
What We Do
The Verde Watershed Restoration Coalition (VWRC) has been protecting the Verde River Watershed for over a decade
Collaboration across agencies, parcel boundaries, and organizations is necessary when tackling watershed-wide restoration. Friends of the Verde River convenes VWRC, working collaboratively for a healthy, flowing Verde River system. Over the past decade, the Coalition has secured over $4.5 million for watershed improvement. VWRC has historically focused on the removal of invasive plant species from riparian forests. Recognizing the need to address other threats to the Verde watershed, VWRC expanded focus to include wildlife corridors, sediment reduction, water quality monitoring, and volunteerism.
Our Goals and Key Accomplishments
Goal: Restore and maintain ecosystem functions and habitat connectivity for fish and wildlife to facilitate self-sustaining natural processes and linkages between terrestrial and aquatic systems.
- Eliminated invasive species from over 10,500 acres of riparian forest Removed unnecessary fencing from National Forests to benefit pronghorn
- Worked with landowners and land managers to preserve wildlife corridors
Goal: Reduce accelerated erosion and associated landscape drivers along perennial river floodplains, ephemeral washes, upland gullies, and springs.
- Installed 25 rock erosion control structures and 54 juniper erosion control structures in gullies
- Thinned or removed 580 acres of invasive junipers and 1,150 trees at the Munds Draw erosion control project
- Installed fencing to prevent vehicle access in a sensitive riparian area
- With Forest Service partners, identified the highest priority sediment reduction projects on public lands
Goal: Address water quality drivers to maintain and improve water quality to attain state clean water standards for healthy fish and wildlife and sustainable recreation.
- Established a community science water quality sampling program with volunteers
- Secured Bureau of Reclamation Water Smart grant to create a coordinated, watershed-wide sampling plan
Goal: Provide volunteer and educational opportunities to assist in river conservation efforts and develop people who are stewards of watershed health.
- Engaged over 200 fifth graders in the 2022 Annual Verde Valley Bioblitz
- Volunteers worked for 130 hours during the 2022 annual Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service