The MCRCD Land Stewardship Program mission is to provide professional, progressive, and sustainable long-term land management that is resilient to climate change and supports native ecosystems and the local community.

Willits Bypass Mitigation Lands

The Willits Bypass Mitigation Lands, located in Little Lake Valley, is the largest public wetlands restoration and mitigation project in the State of California. In 2015, we assumed long term management responsibility for the 2,087-acres of wet meadow, stream corridors, and oak woodlands. CalTrans created a non-wasting endowment through the National Fish & Wildlife Foundation as a permanent source of funding for management and monitoring of mitigation lands. MCRCD, a signatory to the Endowment Agreement, signed a 10-year interim contract to provide necessary on-the-ground land management and monitoring services. Four staff members manage and monitor grazing impacts to listed species, ecosystem function, and overall biological diversity.

Our Little Lake Valley Blog: recent posts

  • Week #35 Great Egrets on the Hunt
    Great Egrets frequent marshes, streams, and many other productive hunting grounds. They use their patient stealth and heightened senses to…
  • Late Fall Beauty in Little Lake Valley
    December 1, 2021 The Little Lake Valley grasses are growing rapidly with help from the rains we had a couple…
  • Bears In Little Lake Valley
    After many weeks of reviewing hours of black bear footage on our wildlife video cameras, it is time to write…

Our Little Lake Valley Videos

Our team has created dozens of videos showing the diversity of life in Little Lake Valley’s Willits Wetlands. Please see our YouTube channel for the complete video collection.

Our Little Lake Valley Gallery

Above is a sample of recent photos from the Little Lake Valley. See the complete gallery for more.

Habitat Mitigation Projects