A somewhat under birded but wonderful stretch of the Verde River has been awarded an improvement grant from Friends of the Verde River. Consisting of 3.66 miles of riparian corridor along the Verde River, this property is owned and maintained by the local property owner’s association (Verde Village Property Owners Association).
Located from S. Cayuse Trail to the end of Comanche Drive in Verde Village #5 on the edge of Cottonwood just north of SR 260, it is a delightful section of river that is easily accessible to the public. A footpath leads birders along the river which Is home to many species of birds and wildlife. There are even a few rustic benches conveniently situated for “armchair” birding.
Friends of the Verde River is a Cottonwood based non-profit dedicated to preserving the Verde River and its related tributaries. One of its programs is a collaboration of local business called Verde Conservation Partners. These businesses contribute funds to Friends and annually the Partners make awards to local organizations that have projects focused on river protection. For more information, please go to their web site: verderiver.org
This year Friends has announced a $5,000 grant to VVPOA for their plan to install natural rock barriers and signage in order to keep vehicles from destroying the natural trails in the preserve. This project is the latest in a long line of improvements that volunteers from VVPOA and others in the community have made over the years.
In addition, VVPOA also has a sizeable pond located off Del Rio. Some of the pond funds will be used to remove domestic ducks and geese and send them to a rescue organization. In the last few years, the association has improved the pond as well by installing a shelter with picnic tables.
While NAAS was not involved in this project, our own Patti Greeneltch led the charge on behalf of the VVPOA. We would like to thank both the VVPOA and Friends for their dedication to preserving the Verde River, one of Arizona’s birding jewels. We encourage everyone to try some birding there.
By: Brent Bitz