California High-Speed Rail Authority names Westervelt Ecological Services "Mother Nature's Helpers"
Check out Western Region Director Hal Holland as he tours the Cosumnes Floodplain Mitigation Bank with the California High-Speed Rail Authority.

As part of their commitment to sustainability, the High-Speed Rail Authority chose to partner with Westervelt Ecological Services (WES) to restore and preserve thousands of acres of land in the San Joaquin Valley.

Click the play button to get a sneak peek at some of the properties WES is working on to deliver to CAHSRA.
Stitches Stream Mitigation
In 2018, the Southeastern Region's Stitches Stream Mitigation Site was selected by the Tennessee Stream Mitigation Program (TSMP) as a full delivery stream mitigation project. The 102-acre site is located in northeastern Macon County, TN, within the East Lower Cumberland Service Area. It is located within the Eastern Highland Rim ecoregion of the Interior Plateau. The project will generate compensatory stream mitigation credits on behalf of TSMP.
The land is currently being utilized as a commercial beef cattle operation. The property has been a working cattle farm for at least the last twenty-five years under the current ownership. This project is unique in that it showcases WES's ability to work with the private land owner, TSMP, and the regulatory agencies.
TSMP Project Goals :
Restore approximately 7 miles of stream
Reestablish ~6,942 linear feet of channel
Enhance 6,848 linear feet of stream
Preserve 2,458 linear feet of stream
Improve water quality and stabilize stream banks
Construct in-stream channels
Little Egbert Tract
Multi-Benefit Tidal Restoration
The Little Egbert Tract Multi-Objective Project is a 3,000-acre flood improvement, native fish habitat restoration, and agricultural protection project in the Sacramento River Delta. The property is located at the eastern edge of Solano County at the terminus of the Yolo Bypass, immediately upstream of the confluence with the Sacramento River and the city of Rio Vista, CA.
Extensive regional flood planning by multiple agencies including Solano County, Sacramento Area Flood Control Agency, and California Department of Water Resources (DWR) have focused on a multi-year regional strategy for enhancing the Yolo Bypass and improving natural habitat in the Delta. This project is targeted in the 2017 Central Valley Flood Protection Plan as a key multi-benefit project. The property currently floods when flows exceed the 25-year rainfall event. Most recently, flooding occurred in 1983 and 1997, and this required tremendous repair costs to the landowner, DWR, and Caltrans. Current design considerations include multiple breaches in the farm berm, installation of low inlet and outlet weirs, and internal landform reconfiguration to maximize habitat and flow conveyance. Design considerations include daily tidal inundation and engagement of the site for annual flood conveyance.

The Concept
Implementation of the project opens up the lower outlet of the Yolo Bypass system, reducing the peak flood elevations on miles of upstream levees that protect adjacent agricultural lands and the Sacramento deep water ship channel. The increased flood capacity across the Little Egbert Tract is critical for several additional flood projects planned upstream in the bypass to increase overall system-wide capacity and conveyance.
The project is centrally located in a key area for numerous native fish species, with particular benefits for state/federally listed Delta smelt, Chinook salmon and green sturgeon. The proposed project would make available 3,000+ acres of floodplain wetlands, tidal marsh, and shallow sub-tidal habitat for spawning, rearing, and flood refugia. Unlike most of the Delta Islands, this site is not subsided and therefore provides optimal elevations for large-scale habitat restoration. Situated at the confluence of Cache Slough, Steamboat Slough, Sacramento River, and the Yolo Bypass, the project is in one of the most highly productive fish migration locations. The multi-objective approach embodied in this project addressing flood, habitat, and agricultural goals provides exceptional value and benefit for the region.
The Little Egbert Tract Project has everyone at WES buzzing with anticipation. Stay tuned for more on this exciting project in our upcoming Newsletters.
Fly Rod Chronicles with Curtis Fleming Filming at WES Project sites for 2019 Programming
What is Fly Rod Chronicles? Just another fishing show? Absolutely not! Curtis Fleming spends time with the locals, touring the communities to learn about the local culture and shares this with his viewers. Fly Rod Chronicles shares Curtis’ love of fly fishing and the great outdoors, but it also shares a message. The 2019 season will feature three episodes of WES staff and project sites, highlighting the conservation work WES is doing in all three of our regions and surrounding territories, and will of course include some amazing fishing!

You can catch up on previous episodes like the one highlighted here featuring our very own WES Vice President, Greg DeYoung, from the FRC Youtube channel. Also, be sure to find the new season of Fly Rod Chronicles airing on the Pursuit Channel and Wild TV. 
A message from our Safety Manager, Bartley Roberston, CSP
What is Safety? What is a Safety Manager? For years I have struggled to answer these questions. It's not that I am not "qualified," or do not "understand what I am doing," I have professional certifications and a degree in "Safety." But certifications and degrees do not tell you what safety is or what is the role of a Safety Manager. Nailing down a specific answer to these questions has continuously eluded me for years. You see, safety is not an object. You can't see it, hold it, smell it, taste it, or touch it. Safety is an idea and a culture. As a Safety Manager, I am in the business of "selling" an idea and culture that most will never see a direct return on. Not that safety doesn't have a return, but how do you realize a return on an incident that never happened? How do you quantify the prevention of an incident? Spoiler alert - you can't! You can, however, complete preventative activities such as peer to peer observations or inspect areas for hazards, but most of all, care enough about your fellow man to keep them from being injured. I do not have a crystal ball to see into the future. What I have is compassion for people. A compassion that does not want to see anyone suffer, or be in pain, knowing it could have all been prevented. That is what I try to instill in everyone I come into contact with. So over my 11 years in "safety," I have learned the key role of a "Safety Manager" is influence and compassion. If you build on these, the rest will fall into place.

Safety shouldn’t be about the routine activities of safety; it should be about living and learning, and caring for others. When safety is made into some bureaucratic, legal or club exercise, it has lost the plot. This is why I prefer to talk much more about risk than I do about safety. As risk is lowered and hazards are mitigated, safety is improved. The moment you tell someone you are into safety they think you are either the fun police or some legal nerd who loves checklists. When we put learning first, people first, relationships first, respect first and living first, then we might get to the heart of safety.

As the construction season is winding down and winter is right around the corner, safety both in the workplace and at home needs to be reconsidered. I would like to challenge each of you to try one thing: Break out of the checklists and bureaucratic nature that is instilled in all of us. Although it is necessary for compliance, it holds a small place in preventing injuries. Take the time to learn, care, respect, live and put others first. If we carry those ideas with us daily, I believe we will get to the heart of "safety." 
September 11-13, 2018

Celebrating its 41st year, the world’s largest totally irrigated working farm show comes together once again in Grand Island, Nebraska. The show features the latest equipment, supplies, and technologies available to today’s producers. Right now you might be asking yourself "WHY IS WESTERVELT ECOLOGICAL SERVICES ATTENDING THIS EVENT???"

Carla DeMasters and Stephen Decker of our Rocky Mountain Region (RMR) attended the event to educate today's producers on our Wetland Mitigation Banking Program. WES RMR has partnered with the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) to create this program to assist agricultural producers that are yielding commodities on converted wetlands to remain eligible for USDA programs.

As challenging issues such as climate change, urbanization, and the rapid pace of technological advancement create opportunities, they also require serious re-evaluation of current professional practice and standards. To address this state of affairs, ASCE has outlined a road map to transform the profession.

Casey Rigsby of our Southeastern Region was able to answer some of those questions regarding sustainability when he presented to the ASCE Dothan Branch in September. His topics focused on 404 mitigation, general mitigation banking, how credits are generated, the federal rule, and an overview of our banks and projects.

If you would like for WES to present on these topics for your office staff or event, please click the link below to schedule a date.

Upcoming Events

The Westervelt staff is all over the place these days! Please be sure to come say hello if you are attending any of the following events:

Partners in the News

Westervelt Ecological Services is a proud partner of the Gulf Coastal Plain Ecosystem Partnership (GCPEP), facilitated by the Longleaf Alliance, which was just awarded nearly $1 million to continue the collaboration of the 15 public and private landowners in their efforts to restore the longleaf pine ecosystem on over 1.3 million acres along the Florida-Alabama border. To learn more about GCPEP.

Welcome New WES Employees
Tara Beltran
Ms. Beltran joined Westervelt Ecological Services in August 2018 as a Compliance Coordinator for the Western Region, where she is responsible for tracking issues related to compliance for over twenty separate properties including banks, turnkeys, and properties under development. Prior to joining Westervelt, Ms. Beltran worked as a Habitat Specialist for a water agency where she managed efforts with outside state regulatory agencies to complete restoration of the Tule Red habitat project.

Ms. Beltran has a Bachelor’s degree in Government from CSU Sacramento and a Master’s degree in Law from the University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law in Sacramento, CA. 
Chloe Lewis
Ms. Lewis is a Project and Business Development Planner for the Rocky Mountain Region. Ms. Lewis will assist in the reconnaissance, site acquisition, development, and compliance tracking of wetland and special-status species projects and mitigation banks.

Ms. Lewis holds a master's degree in Environmental management with an emphasis in Integrated Land Management. Prior to joining Westervelt, she was the Executive Director/ Watershed Coordinator for the Middle South Platte River Alliance. In addition, she has previously worked for several government agencies and private firms including the EPA, BLM, USDA Forest Service, City and County of Denver and SRK Consulting.
Kristen Qualls
Ms. Qualls joined the Southeastern Region in May 2018 as an intern and was promoted to Land Stewardship Technician in September 2018. Her responsibilities include monitoring, maintenance, and land management for the Southeastern Region projects. She received an Associate’s Degree of Science from Cleveland State Community College, Tennessee, and her Bachelor of Science in Professional Forestry from Auburn University. In her spare time, she enjoys hunting, fishing, and wood working.
Drew Thacker
Ms. Thacker is the Associate GIS Analys t for the Southeastern Region. Her primary responsibilities include GIS analysis and production. She provides support for research, marketing, and project identification development. Her focus is also on site reconnaissance and spatial analysis of habitat and market trends.

Prior to her role as Associate GIS Analyst, Drew worked at WES as a GIS/Marketing intern. She has also completed an internship with the park biologist at Wakulla Springs State Park. In addition to her other work-related experience, Drew has been a biological research assistant in the conservation and forest ecology labs at the Jones Ecological Research Center in Southwest Georgia. 
Employment Opportunities with Westervelt Ecological Services

Join our team!!! We currently have positions available for the following:

POSITION: Associate Project Planner
The purpose of this position is to assist in the reconnaissance, site acquisition, development, and entitlement of mitigation projects (i.e., mitigation banks and turnkeys). The position will require the ability to work closely with other disciplines within the office as well as with a variety of federal, state, and local resource agencies to achieve regional goals.
  • Bachelor’s degree in environmental studies, biology, landscape, architecture, or related field.
  • Three to four years of field survey work or related experience. GIS experience preferred.
  • Experience in stream and/or wetland restoration in the Southeastern U.S.
  • Familiarity with wetland and species regulatory policies.
  • Good interpersonal skills and ability to work collaboratively with a variety of stakeholders and organizations.
  • Ability to perform both field work and office document preparation.

POSITION: Associate Project Planner
LOCATION: Sacramento, CA
The Associate Project Planner will assist in the reconnaissance, site acquisition, development, and compliance tracking of wetland and special-status species projects and mitigation banks. The position will require the ability to work closely with different project managers and disciplines within the office as well as with a variety of federal, state, and local resource agencies to achieve regional entitlement goals.
  • Bachelor’s degree in environmental studies, biology or related field
  • Three to four years of field survey work or related experience with wetlands and California wildlife. GIS experience preferred.
  • Knowledge of environmental permitting issues in California and Colorado and mitigation document preparation
  • Familiarity with wetland and species regulatory policies
  • Good interpersonal skills and ability to work collaboratively with team members of other disciplines.
  • Ability to perform both field work and office document preparation

POSITION: Associate Land Steward
LOCATION: Sacramento, CA
The purpose of the Associate Land Steward position is to conduct land management and habitat stewardship activities. The Associate Land Steward will be responsible for maintaining WES’s habitat preserves and appurtenances within the Western Region.
  • High school diploma or GED with a minimum of three years experience in ranching, farming or related land management field
  • California driver’s license with a clean driving record
  • Mechanical aptitude to maintain/operate land management equipment (farm tractor, all-terrain vehicle, chainsaw, etc.). Experience with basic metal fabrication and welding preferred.
  • Ability to interact with associates and contractors on a professional level
  • Ability to work independently in the field setting, often in a remote location
External candidates should submit a complete resume to , indicating in the subject line the position for which they are applying.