Last week, Ducks Unlimited and partners were awarded over $58 million in funding to improve water delivery systems at Gray Lodge Wildlife Area and Sutter National Wildlife Refuge, which will provide both areas the capability to receive their full future allotments of water for wetland habitat.
First, the Biggs-West Gridley Water District (BWGWD), in partnership with Ducks Unlimited, was awarded funding of up to $52,450,000 by the California Natural Resources Agency (CNRA) for project work to improve water delivery to Gray Lodge Wildlife Area. BWGWD’s water conveyance system currently does not have the capacity to deliver the required flows to Gray Lodge consistent with the wildlife area’s monthly needs to meet habitat objectives while concurrently meeting agricultural water delivery obligations. The proposed work will improve the reliability to deliver full water supplies to the wildlife area and will create 13,000 acre feet of new water conveyance capacity.
And at Sutter National Wildlife Refuge, Ducks Unlimited, in partnership with the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, was awarded funding of up to $5,972,167 by the California Natural Resources Agency (CNRA) for project work to improve water delivery. This grant from CNRA’s Proposition 1 Central Valley Project Improvement Act (CVPIA) Grant Program will improve delivery of existing water rights and ultimately provide the capacity and reliability to deliver full refuge water supply to Sutter NWR when available.
“This is an opportunity to show how cooperation among the state, the water district, farming community and wildlife interests can result in incredible success,” said Ducks Unlimited’s Western Region Director of Operations, Mark Biddlecomb. “Gray Lodge and Sutter are jewels of California’s Central Valley, and Ducks Unlimited is proud to play a part in their continued enhancement.”