(707) 462-3664 info@mcrcd.org

Connecting to Creeks

Connecting to Creeks is a hands-on stream ecology program designed to teach children about their neighborhood creeks and apply those connections to the larger Navarro River watershed. Launched by Anderson Valley Unified School District and the MCRCD through a Tobacco Settlement grant in 2008, the program introduces middle school students to creek ecology on Robinson Creek and Anderson Creek. Units include measuring stream temperature, conducting a stream habitat quality survey, native and invasive plant I.D., a guided bird walk and surveying for macro-invertebrate insects using a LaMotte Company Stream Ecology kit.

Watershed BMPs for Cannabis Cultivation

MCRCD’s Watershed Best Management Practices for Cannabis Growers and Other Rural Gardeners is designed to help North Coast residents take an active stewardship role in caring for their land. The MCRCD developed the guide to help protect sensitive species, water quality and in-stream flows in fragile North Coast watersheds. It is the first peer-reviewed, best management practices (BMP) manual for cannabis cultivation produced by a natural resource agency in California (Click here for English Version or here for Spanish).

The guide contains BMPs for water use and capture, road and land development, soil health, fertilizer and pest management, and solid and human waste disposal, as well as an easy-to-use BMP checklist, a land self-assessment form, and a quick reference permit guide.

The guide was partially funded by the State Water Resources Control Board. The guide is consistent with the regulations presented in the Medical Marijuana Regulation and Safety Act (MMRSA) and the North Coast Regional Water Board’s cannabis order, but it is not a synopsis or a complete list of their BMPs.

Water Conservation & Stormwater Education

MCRCD offers water conservation and stormwater assistance and education for homeowners, businesses, small water suppliers, farmers and ranchers, school districts and Tribes across a wide range of needs, including emergency drought planning assistance, watershed education in K-12 classrooms, homeowner water conservation workshops, and planning for stormwater runoff using low impact development (LID). Low impact development refers to practices that encourage rain infiltration rather than runoff, such as stormwater retention basins, rain gardens, vegetated rooftops, rain barrels and permeable pavements. LID prevents polluted runoff from entering creeks and rivers, improving water quality and aquatic habitat. LID also encourages groundwater recharge by allowing rain to infiltrate the soil. MCRCD also produced a school unit for high school and college students on Rainwater Harvesting, which can be found here: Rainwater_Harvesting_Unit.


LandSmart® (www.landsmart.org) is a regional, collaborative program that helps land managers meet their natural resource management goals while supporting productive lands and thriving streams. LandSmart® was developed by the Sonoma Resource Conservation District (RCD), Napa County RCD, Mendocino County RCD and Gold Ridge RCD in collaboration with the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), land managers, and environmental agencies.

By working together, we can offer an enhanced program that draws upon the skills and expertise of each RCD. Through this collaboration we provide our communities with a unique, cost effective conservation service that is specific to the region and offered through a trusted and local organization.

LandSmart® programs and services available in your watershed may include:

  • Plans Developing plans to help you manage your resources purposefully (link to http://landsmart.org/programs-services/landsmart-plans/)
  • On-the-Ground Implementing projects and best management practices to improve property and habitat (link to http://landsmart.org/landsmart-on-the-ground/)
  • Water Resources – Providing local solutions for water security to rural landowners and agriculturalists.