U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service

Sacramento Fish & Wildlife OfficeServing the people, conserving the fish, wildlife, and plants of California

A Unit Of The Pacific Southwest Region

Service Staff Join Sacramento Residents to Improve Habitat for Threatened Species

December 4, 2017

Sacramento Fish & Wildlife Office staff joined by friends and family at the 2017 Great American River Clean Up. Photo credit: Veronica Davison, USFWS.

The dedication Sacramento Fish and Wildlife Office (SFWO) staff have to conservation—protecting species at risk and their habitats—does not stop at the end of the business day. Many SFWO staff devote time in the evenings and weekends to volunteering in the communities where they live and work. For some, it includes volunteering to improve wildlife habitat at local schools, while others work with wildlife organizations to tag migratory birds. Recently, several staff from SFWO participated in the Parkway Foundation-coordinated Great American River Clean Up.

Division Chief Kellie Berry was among the many staff surprised by items they found—everything from bed frames and window blinds to small plastic items that are hazardous when consumed by wildlife. Photo credit: Veronica Davison, USFWS.

The 23-mile American River Parkway, considered by some to be the “jewel of Sacramento,” is a popular area for fishing, biking, running, boating, rafting, birdwatching, among other outdoor activities. It also serves as much-needed habitat for the federally listed yellow-billed cuckoo and valley elderberry longhorn beetle. This beautiful open space in the heart of the Sacramento Valley is not only known for its wildlife and recreation, but it has also become littered with trash. Over the past few years, the Great American River Clean Up events have resulted in the removal and proper disposal of tens of thousands of pounds of trash and recyclables.

It is no fun to pick up other people’s trash, but Sacramento Valley Division Chief Kellie Berry knew that convening a team of her colleagues, they would be able to make a bigger contribution and enjoy each other’s company while doing it. “It’s important for staff to participate in community events like this because it’s hands-on, it’s doing something to give back. We do a lot in the office and this was actually getting out in the field in habitat for the valley elderberry longhorn beetle, as well as the yellow-billed cuckoo. By cleaning up their habitat, it gives them a better place to live too.

SFWO staff were happy to join the thousands of volunteers who are helping improve the American River Parkway for the enjoyment of Sacramento’s residents and survival of its wildlife.

by Veronica Davison / SFWO External Affairs

Last updated: October 22, 2019