Since 2015, the Cienega Watershed Partnership has enlisted Watershed Management Group’s (WMG) help in creating a restoration plan to begin the process of revitalizing and conserving Cienega Creek. We used the knowledge and experience we gained through our work in the region and hit the ground running in the Cienega Creek watershed. In spring 2016, a steering committee was formed to guide the development of a Decision Support Tool (DST) for decision making for upland, arroyo, and riparian restoration, and use our collective knowledge to ID areas to investigate. With the help of Amanda Smith, UA graduate student and PAG summer intern, we produced a draft GIS map of issues and opportunities. We developed a site sensitivity and capability analysis modeling approach to help weight factors in the decision making process and a site-specific knowledge acquisition form.
In late summer 2016, with the LCNCA Technical Teams, we conducted four meetings to review data and criteria and provide input on implementation. This includes solicitations to meet with the FROG project personnel, the U.S. Forest Service, more BLM personnel, and local landowners. Feedback was received from more than 35 individuals. Work in the spring of 2017 included finalizing a draft of the Cienega Watershed Erosion Management & Restoration Plan to send out to our partners and incorporated substantial feedback. We also will conduct free restoration workshops for residents using a BLM grant, encouraging input from landowners and ranchers.
Upcoming Workshops and On-the-Ground Restoration
In March 2017, CWP and WMG collaborated on a proposal to the Bureau of Reclamation WaterSMART Program for ground truthing and implementation of the plan for two to three sites and engaged greater partnership from Pima County. The grant was awarded and that work should commence in summer of 2018 to compliment and further this effort.
Draft Engagement Materials and Training Plan
Header photo by Michael McNulty.