‘Ahakhav Tribal Preserve

The ‘Ahakhav Tribal Preserve, located along the lower Colorado River on Colorado River Tribal lands near Parker, Arizona, has served as the model for wetland, riparian and upland restoration on the lower Colorado River and the entire Southwestern region. Once infested with thick stands of tamarisk, this area was inaccessible to the tribe's members and the public. Fred Phillips, owner of Fred Phillips Consulting, initiated this monumental restoration effort in 1995 while working with the Colorado River Indian Tribes. He and selected staff prepared the `Ahakhav Tribal Preserve Restoration Plan and obtained the necessary compliance and land use permits to initiate construction. Throughout the five years of work at the Preserve, the team secured more than $5.7 million in grants for restoration projects, a native plant nursery, park facilities, interpretive trails, environmental monitoring, and educational programs. This project received Outstanding Project of the Year award from the Bureau of Indian Affairs Woodlands Program, Phoenix Area Office. Finally, Fred developed a five-year fund-raising strategy for the Tribes with a focus on natural resource management, wise economic development, and secondary education for the community. The ‘Ahakhav Tribal Preserve is now used as a model for the Bureau of Reclamation’s Multi-Species Conservation Program and continues revegetation of up to 100 additional acres a year.