"We've seen elk calves tangled up in this fencing multiple times." - local hunters
In partnership with Colorado Parks & Wildlife, BHA and volunteers removed 1.75 miles of fencing in the rugged pinyon juniper forests of Meeker, CO during National Public Lands Day weekend. Over the Fall CPW will drive through, load up the removed materials, and truck it to the scrap yard to be recycled.
While removing woven wire fence from the top of a ridge, two hunters out glassing approached us to share with us what they have seen while hunting this area. They told us over the many years they've been coming to this spot they've stumbled upon, on multiple occasions, elk calves tangled up in the exact fence we were removing. They praised us for our hard work, expressed their gratitude, and continued in their pursuit to fill their archery tags. This story gave us the resolve to not leave until we completely removed that particular section of fencing. It's anecdotes like these that continue to fill our tanks and put that much more purpose behind our work. Staff and volunteers walked away from that project proud to have improved habitat permeability in such an important area for our big game herds.
On day 1 volunteers and staff removed the fencing surrounding a dried up pond, opening up this early spring season water source.
Wire and t-posts staged for CPW staff to haul off to the scrap yard.
Next we moved onto a section of woven wire lining the top of a ridge.
No barbs made for a quick and easy roll up.
Woven wire can be just as dangerous to wildlife as barbed wire and can easily separate calves and fawns from their mothers.
Elk, deer, and pronghorn can now move freely when traveling up and out of the White River valley.
Brittany (staff) and Helen (volunteer) feeling proud and accomplished after a long day of work and an entire section of fencing removed.
A huge thank you to Helen, Logan, Barry, Jeremy, Aiden, and Courtney for all of their hard work and to Smoking River Brewery for the donation of some of their delicious beer, the Colorado Chapter for the food, and to Colorado Parks & Wildlife for their continued partnership.
(For more content here is a short video from our Habitat Stewardship Coordinator, Britt Parker, giving a walk through of the first site.)