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Wildlife Structures

Photo of birds and a bat

ARCD in collaboration with Calaveras County and Tuolumne County RCDs has received Climate Resilience Through Habitat Restoration on California Lands funding through the California Wildlife Conservation Board and California Association of Resource Conservation Districts to install and monitor wildlife structures on private property across Amador, Calaveras and Tuolumne Counties. 

ARCD, CCRCD, and TCRCD anticipate awarding up to 140 wildlife structures to Amador, Calaveras, and Tuolumne County residents, including

  • Nesting Structures for species such as: Western and Mountain Bluebirds, Wood Ducks, Barn Owls, and Kestrels.
  • Bat boxes for the numerous Sierra Nevada bats species, including: California myotis, Pallid Bat, Mexican Free-Tailed Bat, Little Brown Bat.
  • Roosting Structures for numerous species of raptors, including: American Kestrel, Sharp-Shinned Hawk, Red-Tailed Hawk, Cooper's hawk.
  • Sites demonstrating consistent wildlife activity may be selected to install wildlife cameras for monitoring. Still photos of animal activities at structures will also be downloaded to RCD websites.
  • One site per county demonstrating exceptional wildlife activity will receive a livestream camera to be broadcast on each RCDs website for public education. These cameras will be evenly distributed between the three counties. As nesting/roosting usage changes, we will have the ability to move the livestream camera to capture heightened activities.

Nesting boxes will be placed on existing trees or structures. Certain raptor perches will require high, open air spaces to provide habitat to raptors that prefer wide open spaces. 

Species wildlife structure selection will require a site visit to establish suitability of site and adjacent habitat. Consideration will be given to habitat type and condition, elevation, and proximity to human activity during the selection process. Selection will prioritize distribution of structures across multiple habitats and elevations throughout the three counties. Large parcels of land with variable habitat types may be eligible to receive more than one structure. Technical assistance and site selection will occur on a first come, first serve basis.

Site visits to determine award selection will occur in late-spring, early-summer 2024. Structure installations will occur in early winter 2024. All structures will become the property of the landowner, unless the landowner wishes to have it removed, at the end of the grant term. All cameras remain the property of the RCDs, and will be removed by the end of the grant term.

ARCD, CCRCD, and TCRCD objectives from the project include:

  • To provide important wildlife species vital nesting or roosting structures to successfully utilize otherwise prime habitat conditions. 
  • Provide support to rare avian species in the tri-county area.
  • Encourage the presence of raptor and owl species for predatory pest control of unwanted rodents by providing needed habitat components, reducing landowner use of pesticides. 
  • Support the 17 bat species in the Central Sierra. Numerous species of bats in California are in decline. One of the most important, but limiting factors that impact bat populations is the lack of suitable nesting sites.

Awardees will be required to install, clean, and maintain wildlife structures throughout the grant term. ARCD will provide technical assistance in identifying appropriate sites for wildlife structures, installation and maintenance guidelines, and wildlife monitoring. Monitoring of wildlife structures may occur over a 10 year period.

Each chosen property owner will need to fill out and sign a Right of Entry (ROE) prior to any placement of structures or cameras.

If interested, please submit your information here: Wildlife Structure Interest Form 

You will be contacted for a site visit if your site is determined to fit project criteria. Filling out this interest form is not a guarantee of funding or assistance. Depending on interest and/or demand the ARCD may not have the capacity to provide technical assistance to all interest form submissions at this time.

Wildlife Structures Partner Organizations:

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