Letter to the Editor: CCCC applauds Craig Press editorial
Colorado Crane Conservation Coalition, Inc. (CCCC) applauds the editorial in the Craig Daily Press of January 29, 2021 entitled ”Unifying the Yampa Valley should be a top priority moving forward.”
CCCC is a non-profit organization that promotes the conservation and protection of Greater Sandhill Cranes and their habitat in Northwest Colorado. Our headquarters are in Routt County but we have always worked in Moffat County as well. We welcome the idea of partnering more closely with the Craig and Moffat county community around activities highlighting and helping these iconic birds that are both a wonderful natural resource of the area and an eco-tourism magnet.
Birding and wildlife watching have become a favorite pastime for millions of Americans, especially during the pandemic. According to the latest U.S. Fish and Wildlife Survey, more than 86 million people participate in various wildlife-watching activities, including attending bird and nature festivals such as the Yampa Valley Crane Festival. They spend close to $76 billion on these activities – more than hunting and fishing combined. These figures bode well for the future of wildlife-watching enterprises in the Yampa Valley.
Over the ten years CCCC has been in existence, we have forged ties with Moffat County residents through our First Crane Sighting Contest, our Crops for Cranes Program, our Crane Photo Contest, and of course, our Yampa Valley Crane Festival. We believe that there is great potential for increasing eco-tourism in both Routt and Moffat counties by our two communities working together to promote Sandhill Cranes. CCCC is eager to add bird walks, guided crane viewings, and speaker events in Craig to our crane festival schedule. Such events would help draw people to Craig and increase the patronage of hotels, restaurants, and other business establishments. To do so, we need Moffat County volunteers to step up and work with our organization. If you are interested, please contact CCCC at firstname.lastname@example.org.
In 2021 Routt County is planning to proclaim March 1-8 as “Greater Sandhill Crane Week.” Cranes will be returning from their wintering grounds and arriving in the Yampa Valley at that time. CCCC urges the Moffat County Board of Commissioners to join with Routt County in proclaiming the first week of March as “Greater Sandhill Crane Week.” Our Greater Sandhill Cranes can help point the way to a brighter future for Moffat County.
Nancy Merrill, President
Colorado Crane Conservation Coalition, Inc.
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