Nature Conservancy spends $4.3 million to protect Zion National Park ecosystem

The Nature Conservancy is a nonprofit environmental organization that dedicates itself to conserving the lands and waters on which all life depends.

Recently they spent $4.3 million on a 419-acre land purchase known as Sheep Bridge, which includes a 2-mile stretch of the ‘pristine’ Virgin River, in order to preserve the ecosystem habitat adjacent to the historic Zion National Park.

“It is actually one of the most pristine desert streams remaining in the Southwest,” Utah Division of Wildlife Resources Aquatic Manager Rick Fridell said in an interview with The Spectrum. “Water in the desert is a pretty critical resource for wildlife as well as people.”

According to the Nature Conservancy, the river at large supports 40 state “sensitive” species, 12 federally-listed endangered species, and the six native fish.

Photo Credit: Stuart Ruckman/The Nature Conservancy

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