FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 9, 2018
Contact: Frazier Haney, Conservation Director, Mojave Desert Land Trust
Phone: (760) 464-5430
New property anchors wildlife corridor to Joshua Tree National Park
Joshua Tree, CA – The Mojave Desert Land Trust has acquired a 630-acre property that will help secure a major wildlife corridor between Joshua Tree National Park and the Twentynine Palms Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center. The property features pristine land with desert tortoise and pinyon-juniper habitat, while also offering public access opportunities.
MDLT has been working with the community for over seven years to acquire the “Juniper Canyon” property near the remote Covington Flats entrance to Joshua Tree National Park. Juniper Canyon was privately owned and at one time was slated for housing development.
To help with the purchase, MDLT participated in the 2017 Give BIG San Bernardino County charity drive, with supporters raising a total of $29,355, nearly three times the original goal of $11,000.
MDLT plans on eventually conveying Juniper Canyon to the national park. It forms part of an area the park previously outlined as prime habitat.
Following the successful purchases of Quail Mountain (2011), the Joshua Tree Section 33 Gateway parcel (2013) and Quail Wash (2015), Juniper Canyon was the biggest missing piece of the puzzle that MDLT has been working on to match the northwest boundary of the national park to natural resources like bighorn sheep.
“These areas are very desirable places to live. The alternative history would have seen areas like Quail Wash and Section 33 cut up for dense housing and this section of the wildlife linkage corridor would have been severed.” — Frazier Haney, MDLT conservation director.
“Acquiring Juniper Canyon ensures these habitats and wildlife corridors surrounding Joshua Tree National Park are secured for future generations. We couldn’t have done it without the support of the local community.”
Care and management of Juniper Canyon will include the cleanup and removal of dump sites, elimination of irresponsible off-road vehicle use, control of weeds, and restoration of native plants where appropriate. Much of this work is completed with the help of a trained corps of volunteers with staff guidance.
The Mojave Desert Land Trust (MDLT) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization with the mission to protect and care for lands with natural, scenic, and cultural value within the Mojave Desert. For more information, visit www.mdlt.org