Arizona: Cibola National Wildlife Refuge Water Conveyance Enhancement and Riparian Restoration

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A decade-long series of projects at Cibola National Wildlife Refuge improved water conveyance in moist-soil wetlands, benefiting the Island and Goose units of the refuge. 

The Island Unit improvements will bring more dependable water flow to moist-soil wetlands, which provide habitat for migratory waterfowl and support public hunting during the waterfowl season. The Goose Unit is comprised of several hundred acres of flooded fields and wetlands and is critical to the refuge's managed Canada goose hunt.

Ducks Unlimited and its partners also began restoration of riparian habitat following a catastrophic fire in 2006 that destroyed several thousand acres of the refuge. This involved removing invasive salt cedar, grading fields for irrigation, planting riparian and upland vegetation. Water distribution management included installing rehabilitating water conveyance infrastructure and rebuilding ditch gates to increase water flow.

These projects impacted a total of 4,400 acres of habitat within Cibola NWR. DU's long-term goals are to assist refuge managers with adding or improving quality waterfowl habitat and enhancing hunting opportunities for waterfowlers.

This project was funded in part by several North American Wetlands Conservation Act (NAWCA) grants.

Partners: Cibola National Wildlife Refuge, Friends of Cibola, River Partners, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, North American Wetlands Conservation Council, U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, BASF Corporation, The Chemical Co., North American Wetlands Conservation Council, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Southwest Conservation Crew members and Ducks Unlimited