Land and water conservation

Photo by Andrew Wright/Lighthawkphoto

Protecting what we love in the Feather River Country

The Feather River Land Trust protects critical headwaters and habitats for thousands of wildlife and plant species in the Sierra Nevada’s largest watershed—a source of drinking water for 27 million people. Since 2000, FRLT has protected over 62,000 acres of ecologically and culturally important landscapes in the Feather River Watershed.

Land Conservation

Protecting priority lands forever

As a nationally accredited land trust, we’re experts in conserving lands forever. Our diverse partnerships—from local landowners and Maidu communities to state and federal agencies—make us effective at permanently protecting crucial lands and water resources at a landscape scale.

We conserve land in 2 ways

Photo by Colby Elliott

1

Conservation easements

Private lands for the public good

Conservation easements are voluntary legal agreements between landowners and the land trust to permanently protect their land and limit development.

2

Lands we own

Preserves for wildlife and people

We purchase land when we want to ensure community access to a beloved place and conserve unique wildlife habitats and cultural resources.

Land Management

Caring for conserved lands

Once land is protected, our Land Stewardship Program works to manage, restore, and enhance its natural and cultural resources, now and for future generations. We work with community partners, local ranchers, and Maidu traditional stewardship practitioners to manage lands so that people, plants, and wildlife can thrive.

Kids in Nature

Growing the next generation of land stewards

If you’re like us, you love nature today because of time spent outdoors and the wild places you explored as a child. Learning Landscapes is FRLT’s conservation and education program designed to facilitate this nature-kid connection throughout the school year with place-based learning and hands-on stewardship experiences.

Photo by Karen Kleven

Native Homelands

Protecting a timeless relationship to land

We’re located in Mountain Maidu homelands. We work with indigenous partners to protect culturally significant lands—and people’s relationship to them—and restore traditional practices to the land.

Current Initiatives

2.3 million acres

the same size as Yellowstone National Park

27 million people

receive water for drinking, agriculture, and power

2,200

plant species—1/3 of California's plant diversity

38

rare or threatened wildlife species

75%

of wildlife species in the Sierra Nevada

123

click to enlarge to watershed scale >

The Feather River Watershed

1

Lake Almanor Region

Holds the headwaters of the North Fork Feather River—the watershed’s largest source of water

2

Spanish & Indian Creeks Region

Cold water tributaries and wet meadows feed the East Branch of the North Fork Feather River

3

Sierra Valley Region

The Sierra Nevada's largest wetlands form the headwaters of the Middle Fork Feather River—a Wild and Scenic River

Lake Almanor Region

Headwaters of the North Fork Feather River

The Lake Almanor Region holds the headwaters of the North Fork Feather River—the watershed’s largest source of water. Where the Cascade Range meets the Sierra Nevada, large wet meadows, waterways, and forests sustain high densities of threatened and endangered birds, native trout fisheries, and migration corridors for rare and threatened mammals like Sierra Nevada Red Fox, Rocky Mountain Elk, and Pacific Fishers.

We’re conserving beloved community places and 43,000+ acres of PG&E-owned headwater lands, including a historic return of Maidu homelands.

At a Glance

Conservation Focus

Water, Wildlife, Native Homelands, and Recreation

Fast Facts

  • Audubon Important Bird Area with California's highest density of breeding Western Grebes + Yellow Warblers
  • ⅓ of Sierra Nevada’s endangered Willow Flycatchers
  • CA’s only known Gray Wolf pack
  • Public Preserves: Olsen Barn Meadow, Mountain Meadows Gateway
  • 12,027 acres conserved to date
Map of Lake Almanor and North Fork Feather River in California

Lake Almanor Region Properties Conserved

Spanish & Indian Creeks Region

Tributaries to the North Fork Feather River

In the heart of the watershed flow important cold-water tributaries to the East Branch of the North Fork Feather River. Large intermountain valleys filled with wet meadows, streams, and agricultural grasslands are rimmed with oak and conifer forests and rocky peaks, creating biodiverse habitats for rare plants, native fish, and diverse wildlife like Sandhill Cranes, Yellow-breasted Chats, Mountain Lions, and River Otters. 

We’re working with ranching families and Maidu partners to conserve biodiverse habitats and sustain traditional relationships to land. 

At a Glance

Conservation Focus

Cold Streams, Wet Meadows, and Maidu Homelands

Fast Facts

  • Black Oak woodlands: biodiverse and culturally important
  • 29 rare or threatened species at Heart K Ranch
  • Robust native Rainbow and Brown trout fisheries
  • Ag lands and forests that sustain rural livelihoods
  • Public Preserves: Heart K Ranch, Leonhardt Ranch
  • 1,967 acres conserved to date
Map of lands conserved near Quincy California

Spanish & Indian Creeks Properties Conserved

Sierra Valley Region

Headwaters of the Middle Fork Feather River

At 120,000 acres, Sierra Valley rivals Lake Tahoe in size and beauty. Its wetlands—the Sierra Nevada’s largest—form the headwaters of the Middle Fork Feather River, a Wild and Scenic River. A biodiversity hotspot, the valley supports the Sierra’s greatest diversity and abundance of birds, like White-faced Ibis and Yellow-headed Blackbirds, and migration corridors for mammals like Pronghorn, Mule Deer, and American Badger. 

To date, FRLT and other conservation groups have worked with ranching families to protect 40,000+ acres, with multiple conservation easements in progress.

At a Glance

Conservation Focus

Wetlands, Birds, Agriculture, and Wild River Headwaters

Fast Facts

  • Designated Audubon Important Bird Area with 230+ bird species—including 17 rare or threatened species
  • Largest wetlands in the Sierra Nevada
  • Biodiverse ag lands sustain wildlife and rural livelihoods
  • Nearly 1,200 plant species
  • Public Preserves: Sierra Valley Preserve
  • 40,000+ acres conserved to date
Map of Conserved Land in Sierra Valley in Northern California

Sierra Valley Properties Conserved

WaterSafeguarding the Sierra’s largest source of clean, abundant water
KidsCultivating a love of nature and stewardship in the next generation
WildlifeProtecting critical habitats for 300+ species of birds and wildlife
Ag & Open SpaceConserving open space and ag lands that host wetlands and wildlife
Native HomelandsConserving native homelands and supporting cultural connections to land
RecreationPreserving majestic beauty and access to nature-based recreation
BiodiversityConserving one of the American West’s most biodiverse regions
Climate ResilienceProtecting biodiverse lands and waters that help natural systems thrive
CommunityProtecting treasured landscapes and community connection to land
Our family has been in this area for generations and I grew up here. I choose to support the Feather River Land Trust because I want my children to have the opportunity to develop an appreciation for the pristine beauty of our local landscape, clean water, and abundant wildlife. Those are things we shouldn't take for granted.
- Sadie Benny
Lake Almanor