Our watersheds – the three forks of the Yuba River and the Bear River – are within a unique “biodiversity hotspot.” This region not only provides ample recreational opportunities but also provides refuge for a vast array of wildlife and plant species endemic to our region. BYLT’s mission is to protect this rich biodiversity and the exceptional natural resources here.
BYLT now holds more than 10,400 acres in conservation easements and fee title preserves. With our conserved lands now ranging from elevations over 8,000 feet to the valley floor at 200 feet, we are monitoring and recording the broad effects that water, or the lack of it, has on our landscapes. It is clear that as droughts continue, we must create better resilience in our lands to continue to support this exceptional biodiversity.
Conserving PG&E land in the high Sierra “checkerboard” around important headwaters reservoirs was a major effort at BYLT in 2016 and will continue into 2017. We have permanently stopped further landscape fragmentation, initiated forest habitat stewardship, and ensured continued public recreational uses; however, prohibiting development is only half the task. The habitat restoration and enhancement work at Rice’s Crossing Preserve and Garden Bar Preserve, and active stewardship of all our protected land is equally important.
Our watersheds thrive because of the support you provide and the efforts of BYLT to secure funding for land conservation. Future generations will surely be thankful. Please consider BYLT in your year-end giving.
~ Executive Director, Marty Coleman-Hunt