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    Forming a Santa Clara River Freshwater Stewardship Corridor

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    Innovative stewardship approaches are key to a sustainable freshwater ecosystem’s health.  What is freshwater stewardship?  How does it apply to the Santa Clara River?  Case studies from similar watershed and ecosystems around the state as well as locally is scheduled to be discussed at the Water Talk ‘Santa Clara River Freshwater Stewardship Corridor’ on April 27 at 6:30pm at the Historic Santa Paula Train Depot, 200 N. 10thStreet, Santa Paula, California.  The program is free, open to the public and features expert scientists and professional speakers on innovative freshwater stewardship tools and actions.

    “Stewardship means taking responsibility in the present to protect and conserve a resource for the long term future,” explains Candice Meneghin, CalTrout Southern California conservation manager, “on the Santa Clara River it can be as simple and inexpensive as managing watershed landscape for invasive plant elimination, or as complex as operating Pyramid and Santa Felicia dams on Piru Creek to accommodate steelhead trout.”  Successful stewardship actions have been piloted by organizations and programs such as the National Marine Fisheries Service Safe Harbor agreements our ongoing Santa Clara River Parkway. 

    Hedrick Ranch Nature Area on the Santa Clara River is a successful Santa Clara River freshwater stewardship example.  Used in the past for cattle grazing, the Hedrick family have become premier local freshwater stewards transforming 220 acres of land into native riparian habitat adjacent to active agricultural property.  The site anchors the future Santa Clara River Parkway and hosts a native plant nursery and restoration program under the direction of UC Santa Barbara Marine Sciences Institute’s RIVRLab research staff, students and volunteers. 

    Water Talks are an ongoing series of informational and educational presentations which include local and regional speakers sharing their knowledge on a range of water related topics.  The programs is intended to increase informed participation in water policy through interaction between community members and experts.  All Water Talks are free, open to the public and hosted by the Santa Clara River Steelhead Coalition whose mission is to protect and restore wild Southern steelhead and its habitat in the Santa Clara River watershed. The Coalition is chaired and coordinated by California Trout, a nonprofit organization dedicated to ensuring resilient wild fish in healthy waters for a better California.

    For more information contact Nina Danza, California Trout Project Coordinator at 805-605-6211 or [email protected].

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