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Lower Colorado and Lower Gila Rivers Wetlands Project

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This project protected and/or restored 2,873 acres of palustrine emergent wetlands and palustrine forest and 60 acres of associated uplands in this important region.  The total funding for the project exceeded $4 million.   Nearly $825,000 in funding was provided by a North American Wetlands Conservation Act (NAWCA) grant.   DU’s key funding partners for this important project include NAWCA; Arizona Game and Fish Department; Colorado River Indian Tribes; U.S. Bureau of Reclamation; Arizona Department of Water Resources; U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; Wellton-Mohawk Irrigation and Drainage District; Duke Energy Maricopa, LLC; and the Perri Family.

Work was completed at seven individual project sites:   Cibola National Wildlife Refuge (NWR), Colorado River Indian Tribes, Havasu NWR, Imperial NWR, Quigley Wildlife Management Area, Pratt Agricultural Lease, and Duke Energy Arlington Valley.   Each of these seven sites is located within what was once the Lower Colorado River Focus Area of the Intermountain West Joint Venture.  However, these sites currently reside within the boundary of the recently established Sonoran Joint Venture.   All sites are located within the Lower Colorado and Lower Gila Rivers Focus Area of the Sonoran Joint Venture.

Work was extensive and included removing non-native salt cedar; contouring land; constructing ditches and pipelines and installing water control structures to provide water conveyance and control; constructing an intake and associated pipelines on the Colorado River to provide a water supply for restored habitats; installing a pump station, pump, and fish screen; and planting native cottonwood and willow riparian vegetation.

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