About the District
The Coconino NRCD was created in December 1965 and includes roughly half of Coconino County. There are 5,351,106 acres within the NRCD and the boundaries extend from the Colorado River to include Havasu Canyon, west to the Aubrey Cliffs, the entire expanse of the Coconino Plateau, east to the Little Colorado River to the Mogollon Rim within the largest contiguous stands of “Ponderosa Forest” in the world.
Elevation: 2,400 ft. at the Colorado River in the Grand Canyon to 12,633 ft. on at the San Francisco Peaks
Terrain: Extremely rugged, characterized by deep tributary canyons and washes.
Precipitation: Average 3-40″ from the Mohave to the Alpine Tundra regions
Land Use in Coconino
Range is the leading land use in the District with non-federal rangelands making up about 2.6 million acres.
On-the-Ground Conservation Practices
Conservation Planning & Monitoring
Noxious Weed Abatement
Environmental Education & Community Outreach
Primary Resource Concerns
Rangeland Drought & Erosion
Wildfire Management w/ Restoration Projects
Watershed Flooding & Erosion
Development / Small Acreage Management
This project is a cooperative project between Babbitt Ranches, Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation (RMEF), the US Fish and Wildlife Service Partners Program, and the Arizona Game and Fish Department (AGFD).
Funding has been provided by the US Fish and Wildlife Service Partners Program, a RMEF PAC grant, and AGFD's Habitat Partnership Program.
Upon completion, over 4,220 acres of grassland restoration will be completed through this partnership, bringing the total grassland restoration work on the CO Bar Ranch to over 40,000 acres.
Cultural Preservation & Stream Restoration
Several years ago Jim Alam, an employee of NRCS and a Coconino NRCD Board Supervisor, recognized the severe nature and consequences of the noxious weed invasion within the Rio de Flag corridor below the effluent outfall of the Wildcat Hill. Together they began a community supported effort to restore the area and protect Picture Canyon known for it’s over 700 individual petroglyphs and panels carved in the basalt outcroppings. Several clean-up projects were organized and coordinated with multiple agency involvement. Eventually, the accumulated trash, debris, and old rusting car bodies were removed from the canyon and the water course. The Coconino NRCD has worked with the City of Flagstaff, Coconino County, and the Picture Canyon Core Group, an ad hoc committee dedicated to the restoration, preservation, and protection of this unique natural and cultural site.
Forest Restoration Initiative
Four National Forests in Arizona, the Kaibab, Coconino, Apache-Sitgreaves, and Tonto, are actively engaged in a collaborative landscape-scale initiative designed to restore fire-adapted ecosystems in the southwestern region. The Coconino NRCD is an active stakeholder in collaboratively planning and carrying out this landscape-scale restoration of ponderosa pine forests in northern Arizona. The overall goal of the Four Forest Restoration Initiative (4FRI) is to restore the structure, pattern, and composition of fire-adapted ecosystems, which will provide fuels reduction, forest health, and wildlife and plant diversity. Doing this while creating sustainable ecosystems and industries.
Ranching - Why it's Important
It is generally not realized, or understood, the place ranching has had in preserving the beautiful vistas that we all enjoy in northern Arizona. If it were not for the continued efforts of ranchers and our western heritage, we would not have the open spaces and wildlife we all treasure. The District works with ranching Cooperators and the Coconino Local Working Group to promote productive rangeland management through monitoring, science, and innovation.
Willow Bend Environmental Education Center
Our education center mission is to provide education outreach services that build environmental awareness and an ethic of responsible stewardship of our natural and cultural resources. Our goal is to help people make mindful choices that are healthier for themselves, our community, and the planet. We lead by example with our passive-solar, straw-bale education center as well as our low-water native gardens.