U.S. DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIORBUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT
Ecosystem Management Plan
Aravaipa Creek is a tributary of the San Pedro River. The creek’s 22-mile-long perennial reach supports a nearly intact example of the one of the rarest remaining habitats in the Southwest: the riparian cottonwood-willow gallery forest. The stream itself supports one of the last remaining assemblages of desert fishes in Arizona, with seven native species including two -spikedace and loach minnow - federally listed as threatened species. The riparian forest and surrounding uplands support rare wildlife such as the threatened Mexican spotted owl and western yellow-billed cuckoo.
The Wilderness was given formal protection by the United States Congress in the Arizona Wilderness Act of 1984. The Aravaipa Canyon area can be enjoyed by up to 18,250 visitors per year, with a limit of 50 people per day within the canyon itself.
About the Decision
The Final Ecosystem Management Plan will enable the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) to improve its management of the Aravaipa Management Area. The Environmental Assessment analyzes the impacts expected from implementing the Aravaipa Ecosystem Management Plan. Based on this analysis, the Finding of No Significant Impact determines that impacts are not expected to be significant. The Record of Decision documents the BLM’s final decision and rationale.
Aravaipa Ecosystem Management Plan Vision
The shared vision of the Aravaipa Ecosystem planning team (BLM, The Nature Conservancy and Arizona Game and Fish Department) is to sustain or restore natural ecological processes, viable native species populations, healthy biological communities, significant cultural resources, and outstanding wilderness values while providing for compatible levels of human use and maintaining lifestyles that emphasize living in harmony with the ecosystem. This will be achieved through cooperative management efforts based on the best available knowledge. Regular monitoring of resource conditions and human use levels will be integrated with all areas of management, and management direction will regularly incorporate new insights gained from the monitoring results.
The Decision Record and Environmental Assessment are subject to appeal in accordance with procedures contained in the 43 Code of Federal Regulations, Part 4. Implementation of this plan will not begin until 30 days after the date of Notice of Availability letter.
For more information, please contact the Safford Field Office, 711 S. 14th Ave., Safford, AZ 85546 by mail, by phone at (928)348-4400 or by email at SFOWEB_AZ@blm.gov.