Whitewater Draw NRCD

District Meeting Notice

Agenda & Minutes Physically Posted Here:

NRCS Douglas Field Office

337 10th St. Douglas, AZ

About the District

In July 1942, area farmers were canvased about forming a conservation district in the Whitewater Draw area. On October 7, 1942, the Whitewater Draw Soil Conservation District was formed, encompassing 4,225 acres of cropland. Today, the Whitewater Draw Natural Resource Conservation District includes over 1 million acres of land.

In the 1940s, the primary crops being grown in the area were cotton and alfalfa as well as a limited amount of vegetables. The primary concerns were water management to address salts and sulfur problems as they related to crop production as well as soil erosion related to irrigation and floodwater runoff.  While the initial focus of the District was on cropland, rangeland now compromises the majority of acres in the District. Cattle have been a major component of the agricultural production within the District ever since the District was created, however, it wasn’t until the environmental movement in the 1970s that more emphasis has been put on rangeland resources and the impacts of grazing.

Physical Features

The District is located  in the far southeastern corner of Cochise County (a part of the Chihuahuan Desert) and includes 1,170,009 acres. It is is comprised of multiple watersheds: San Bernardino, Whitewater Draw Watershed, the upper part of San Simon, and a small portion of the Upper Willcox Playa. It also sports parts of eight distinct mountain ranges within its boundaries. The area is characterized by isolated mountain ranges separated by broad alluvial valleys. Vegetation ranges from grassland in the valleys to pine forest on the mountain tops. 

Land Use

Most of the land is used for livestock ranches, wildlife, and recreation, with smaller amounts of cultivated land. Ownership includes private, state, and federal, including wildlife preserves.

Conservation Practices

  • Brush Control

  • Improved Irrigation Management & Efficiencies

  • Prescribed Grazing

  • Fencing Improvements

  • Water Improvements

  • Coordinated Resource Management Planning

  • Solar Pumping

Primary Resource Concerns

  • Soil Erosion

  • Water Quantity & Quality

  • Border Vandalism & Personal Safety

  • Range Management

  • Renewable Energy

District Mission Statement

Promote sustainable and productive agriculture for the reservation and protection of our natural resources.

PC: Whitewater Draw NRCD

District Highlights

Whitewater Draw NRCD actively promotes natural resource management utilizing sound conservation practices through the following on-going projects:

  • Promote the control of noxious weeds on farmland and rangeland.
  • Promote proper grazing use and prescribed grazing on rangelands within the District.
  • Promote prescribed burning to improve rangelands within the District.
  • Promote monitoring so as to determine whether Conservation Plans on rangelands are meeting stated goals and objectives.
  • Promote practices which improve vegetative cover on District watersheds.
  • Encourage practices that reduce water and wind erosion by improving vegetative cover on District watersheds.
  • Promote the improvement of irrigation distribution systems, irrigation efficiencies, and irrigation water management on farmlands within the District.
  • Update District Cooperators about Food Security Act requirements.
  • Encourage practices that conform to long-term water management goals.
  • Promote grazing as a management tool to achieve conservation objectives.

Nimon S. Hopking Conservation Education Center

Whitewater Draw NRCD is the major source of funds and support for the Nimon S. Hopkins Conservation Education Center. The purpose of the Ed Center is to promote agricultural, environmental, and conservation education by providing materials, programs, and lessons to the teachers, parents, and students in the District when requested.

Board Members

  • Fred Davis, Chairman
  • Frank Krentz, Vice-Chairman
  • Ron Bemis, Supervisor
  • Aaron Cardona, Supervisor
  • Nathan Watkins, Supervisor

District Contact Information

Peggy Davis, Clerk


(520) 642-1951

P.O. Box 94, McNeal, AZ 85617