In 2016, with support from Conservancy donors, 400-acre Ackerson Meadow became part of Yosemite National Park. The extensive meadow system, which was previously used for logging and cattle grazing, supports numerous rare plant and animal species, including monkeyflowers, willow flycatchers and western pond turtles.

This 2019 grant provided essential support for the next steps in a comprehensive project to return Ackerson Meadow to natural conditions by addressing factors such as invasive plants and a mile-long gully flanked by dried-out wetlands. In 2019, efforts focused on mapping wetlands, assessing hydrology, surveying species and identifying culturally significant resources. Park experts also launched a pilot study to install and monitor ecological restoration structures modeled on beaver dams, and worked toward shaping plans for a large-scale restoration, informed by extensive research.

Your gifts helped build momentum for a landmark effort to ensure the natural processes and wild species can flourish in a newly protected habitat.

Completed in partnership with Yosemite National Park, Stanislaus National Forest and American Rivers.

Ackerson Meadow is a sensitive habitat. To ensure the recovery and long-term vitality of this critical wetland ecosystem, the park needs your help to limit additional human impacts on the meadow during and after the restoration. Help this new Yosemite treasure thrive by observing the wetland and its wildlife from a distance, and not treading on vegetation.

Athena Demetry

Branch Chief, Vegetation and Ecological Restoration, Yosemite National Park

Project Notes

Wetland restoration on the scale of Ackerson Meadow is seldom attempted, and this will be a landmark project that others will learn from for years to come.