CE Size: 425 acres
Location: Sandoval County
Eco-Region: Southern Rockies Level III
Conservation Values: Scenic Open Space, Wildlife Habitat
Type of Project: Donated Conservation Easement
Date Completed: December 2016
An inholding within the Santa Fe National Forest, this property, owned by the Girls Scouts of New Mexico Trails, contributes to the viewshed along Rio de las Vacas in the Jemez watershed. The property displays significant and diverse natural resources, including prime summer breeding and foraging habitat for the Jemez Mountain elk herd, the second largest herd in New Mexico.
Along the Rio de Las Vacas, a robust riparian community of willows, alder, narrowleaf cottonwood and locust provide a ribbon of deciduous canopy attracting warblers and other neotropical migrants. The river itself hosts several sport trout fisheries as well as native Rio Grande cutthroat at higher elevations. Open grasslands occupy a significant portion of the property, hosting badger, mule deer and several birds of prey, as well as a plethora of wildflowers providing feeding grounds for at least three species of hummingbird, and other important pollinators.
The majority of the property is mid-elevation meadow and coniferous forest and used seasonally by the Girls Scouts for recreational and educational uses. Historically the property was used for livestock grazing and timber production, with the remains of a logging camp on the property.