Terlingua Creek Project
The Terlingua Creek Project is a legacy project for the Conservancy and a unique opportunity to protect more than 3,000 acres of land along the western boundary of the park.
Private lands on Terlingua Creek adjacent and upstream of the Big Bend National Park boundary represent ecologically significant stream segments, and the potential for designation as such in the Texas Water Plan. Downstream and just inside the park boundary a rare, permanently flowing reach of creek supports primary natural cottonwood bosque within the park. The Big Bend Conservation Cooperative (BIBE, WWF, USFWS and others) is implementing habitat and hydrologic restoration projects at this site, which is habitat of the yellow-billed cuckoo, recently proposed for listing and critical habitat designation by USFWS. The private property along Terlingua Creek, particularly the rare creek and riparian habitat at the confluence of Terlingua and Rough Run creeks, are important for ensuring protection of resources within the current park boundary, and supporting and increasing the scope and effectiveness of these restoration projects. Loss of the same habitat to inappropriate use or development would degrade rare and critical resources within Big Bend.
These properties also contain historic ruins, farmlands, cemeteries, a schoolhouse, and other physical evidence related to the habitation of the area by at least three Hispanic pioneer families. These families had connections to one of the park's premier cultural sites, Terlingua Abajo, located just downstream.
The Big Bend Conservancy is committed to preserving these lands in a critical buffer zone for the park along the Western boundary.