Keep lower Crystal undisturbed

Carbondale is considering developing “Riverfront Park,” located between the fish hatchery and Crystal Bridge Drive — which alters and revegetates sections of the Crystal River. Revegetation with native plants is needed and Roaring Fork Audubon (RFA) supports this work. However, the development aspect of this project, which includes recreational trails and picnic areas, will eliminate this last quiet, relatively intact, native riparian habitat on the lower Crystal River.

RFA strongly recommends against these development alterations.

RFA has been monitoring this section of the Crystal for years and collected data showing exceptionally high breeding bird biodiversity — primarily because this half-mile stretch of river is quiet and relatively undisturbed. Decades of reliable science documents the deleterious effects of human recreation on wildlife with declines in biodiversity; there is no science that supports the notion that recreation enhances native biodiversity.

Carbondale is only providing two development choices, neither of which will protect native biodiversity. RFA is proposing a third, biodiversity-sustaining option.

Comments are due Friday. To comment go to To protect native wildlife species including songbirds, raptors, mammals, amphibians, and more, RFA recommends not selecting either option 1 or 2. Rather, go directly to the comment section and request that the last quiet and relatively undisturbed riparian section along the lower Crystal River remain for protected for our birds and other wildlife — please recommend “no” recreational development.

Please, help us speak for and protect native critters. Please recommend “no” recreational development.

Mary Harris, chair

Delia G. Malone, vice-chair

Roaring Fork Audubon