Private landowners workshop Saturday at Pritzlaff Ranch

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Submitted to the Optic

The Pritzlaff Ranch is a 3,300-acre spread located north of Las Vegas. The ranch has been managed with wildlife conservation as its groundwork through the Biophilia Foundation. This foundation is premised on the belief that through private landowner’s efforts to restore and protect natural resources our countries lands will become healthy and sustainable ecosystems.

The ranch was purchased in 1934 by Richard Pritzlaff with the desire that the land and it’s natural resources would be restored and preserved, which was one of the reasons the Biophilia Foundation was formed. Since the foundation’s formation it has purchased parcels of land in Maryland and Virginia with these same values in mind.  

The United States Fish and Wildlife Service is working with Pritzlaff to transfer the ranch to the National Wildlife Refuge System.  When the transfer is completed the ranch will become part of Rio Mora National Wildlife Refuge and Conservation Area and continue to provide education and training of private citizens, public school students and teachers, university students, local landowners and business managers.   

The ranch, the USFWS, and Friends of Las Vegas National Wildlife Refuge will be providing a workshop for local landowners and interested parties on Saturday.

“We are hoping to make the community more aware of the assistance and guidance varying agencies can provide in managing their lands,” said Rob Larrañaga,  Northern New Mexico Refuge Complex Manager.    

There will be federal, state, and non-governmental agencies attending the workshop to provide information on conservation easements tax incentives, riparian land management, restoration projects, private landowner’s rights, sustainable thinning of trees and many more conservation programs.  

The workshop will begin at the Ranch Headquarters at 10 a.m.  Everyone who wishes to participate will begin a stream restoration project on the ranch until 11:30 a.m. At 11:30, lunch and presentations will begin. Informational booths will  be open throughout the afternoon. At 1 p.m. private landowners will be given the opportunity to install a one rock dam on the ranch and learn how these types of dams could assist with erosion on their land.

Future workshops will provide private landowners the chance to work with their neighbors to install one rock dams on their property.  

For more information, contact Debbie Pike 425-3581.