Arizona Wildlife Conservation Strategy

Anderson Mesa COA

Located just south of Flagstaff, this COA hosts a complex of lakes and wetlands that provide quality habitats for a variety of SGCN. Included in this COA are Marshall, Mormon, Ashurst, and Kinnikick lakes. Other habitats in this COA include grasslands and woodlands. This is a globally recognized Important Bird Area (IBA), primarily for its presence of pinyon jay and the pinyon-juniper habitats found here. This area also provides one of the only wetland complexes in this part of the state and acts as significant stopover habitats for migratory birds. Like other aquatic and wetland habitats in Arizona, a warmer and drier climate is leading to ecosystem changes and increased fire risk.

Conservation Goals

  • Maintain the health and functionality of a major wetland complex that provides habitat for a variety of SGCN.
  • Improve management of livestock and grazing ungulates to reduce adverse impacts to sensitive wetland habitats.


Primary Threats

1. Agriculture

1.3: Livestock farming and ranching

3. Climate Change and Severe Weather

3.1: Habitat shifting and alteration
3.2: Droughts

8. Invasive and Other Problematic Species

8.1: Invasive non-native species

9. Natural System Modifications

9.1: Fire and fire suppression

Potential Conservation Actions

2. Land and Water Management

2.1: Site/area management
  • Conserve or improve wetland areas for migratory birds identified as important habitats during any part of their annual life cycle (breeding, stopover or wintering).
  • Improve fencing to better protect delicate wetland habitats that are affected by livestock.
  • Encourage prescribed and managed fire through partnership with USFS.
2.2: Invasive/problematic species control
  • Restore grassland habitats and remove encroaching woody plants.
2.3: Habitat and natural process restoration
  • Maintain and restore wetland function to ensure the permanence of quality wetland habitats.
  • Remove fencing to improve habitat permeability for American pronghorn.

5. Law and Policy

5.4: Compliance and enforcement
  • Promote various federal and state programs that encourage private landowners to conserve and protect grassland and wetland habitats.

7. External Capacity Building

7.2: Alliance and partnership development
  • Continue to develop public-private partnerships to conserve habitats within this COA.

Habitats Present

Strategy Species


Arizona Toad, Northern Leopard Frog, Arizona Tiger Salamander


American Peregrine Falcon, American Pipit, Bald Eagle, Black-throated Gray Warbler, Broad-tailed Hummingbird, Clark's Grebe, Common Nighthawk, Evening Grosbeak, Flammulated Owl, Golden Eagle, Grace's Warbler, Gray Flycatcher, Gray Vireo, Hermit Thrush, Horned Lark, Lewis's Woodpecker, Long-eared Owl, Mexican Spotted Owl, Mountain Chickadee, American Goshawk (Northern Goshawk), Pinyon Jay, Steller's Jay, Townsend's Solitaire, Vesper Sparrow, Western Grebe, Western Screech-Owl, Western Wood-Pewee, Woodhouse's Scrub-Jay


American Pronghorn, Mexican Gray Wolf, Stephen's Woodrat


Arizona Black Rattlesnake


See Associated Aquatic COAs for fish species.

Protected Areas and Other Areas of Conservation Value

  • Anderson Mesa Important Bird Area

Potential Partners

  • US Forest Service
  • Arizona Antelope Foundation
  • Arizona Trail Association
  • Audubon Southwest
  • Diablo Trust

Relevant Conservation Plans

Associated Aquatic COAs

  • No associated Aquatic COAs