Sky Island Alliance and our wonderful volunteers are back in Aravaipa Canyon! We’re continuing our work of the last several years to hand-pull Vinca major from the banks of Aravaipa Creek in support of The Nature Conservancy and Gila Watershed Partnership’s work to eradicate vinca from the floodplains of the Aravaipa Canyon Preserve.
Over the weekend of March 11th-13th, 15 volunteers from Albuquerque, Bisbee, Phoenix, and Tucson joined SIA staff as we continued our push toward the Aravaipa Canyon Wilderness. We were lucky to be greeted by beautiful weather in the canyon (though a bit cold at night), and were graced by opportunities to see turkey, deer, javelina, coati, and lots of birds too! Folks also had a wonderful time exploring the creek, hanging by the campfire, and sharing stories during our down time.
Thanks to the efforts of all our volunteers we were able to extend our bank treatments of Vinca almost to the wilderness boundary. By the end of our next trip we should hit that mark, which will certainly be an important milestone in the history of our work in the canyon. Then our work will shift to the important task of re-pulling previously treated banks: a necessary step to ensure complete eradication.
We expect to be running several trips a year over the next 2-3 years to continue this work, so there will be plenty of opportunities for volunteers to get their feet wet and enjoy this spectacular Sky Island treasure! Come join us!