Maidu Land Stewardship
Since the beginning of memory, the Mountain Maidu people have inhabited the Feather River region. Over millennia, they have developed unique Traditional Ecological Knowledge to care for land.
However, during the Gold Rush, land reservation treaties were left unratified, leaving the Maidu landless and in danger of losing cultural knowledge and practices. Without concerted effort to restore language, culture, and connection to homeland, the Maidu are facing cultural extinction within a generation.
The Feather River Land Trust is working with Maidu community members and others to protect Maidu homelands and promote Maidu access to land:
- Conserving Humbug Valley: We are partnering with the Maidu Summit Conservancy to permanantly conserve Tásmam Kóyom, what is now called Humbug Valley. After 160 years, this homeland will come home to Maidu ownership. (Read the story here.)
- Stewardship and Traditional Ecological Knowledge: Together, we are planning and implementing stewardship and restoration activities on FRLT’s protected lands and offering educational programs that incorporate Maidu Traditional Ecological Knowledge (TEK).
With support from FRLT members, we are partnering with Plumas Audubon Society, the Maidu Summit Consortium, and others to plan and implement stewardship and restoration activities on FRLT’s Heart K Ranch.
These partnerships presents a unique opportunity to help sustain Maidu culture while enhancing land management practices for wildlife. We are excited about the ramifications of this work nationally, providing land trusts and tribes around the country with insight into how they can best partner to protect native culture and land at the same time.
This partnership with the Mountain Maidu brings our best scientific and cultural knowledge to the table. Together, we are not only helping to restore important habitats in the short term, but we are also building strong partnerships to manage the land long into the future.
We need your help! To learn more about FRLT’s Maidu Land Stewardship project and how you can help restore culture and land, call our office at (530) 283-5758 or Donate online.
Photo: Maidu community member Trina Cunningham by Carl Raymond