The Colorado Crane Conservation Coalition, Inc. (CCCC) is dedicated to the conservation and protection of Sandhill Cranes in Colorado. CCCC was formed in May 2012 in response to a community discussion regarding the hunting of Greater Sandhill Cranes in Northwest Colorado. Birdwatchers, nature-lovers, and other interested citizens of Northwest Colorado were concerned that these migratory birds, designated as “endangered” by the State of Colorado in the 1970s and still listed by the state as a “species of concern,” would decline in numbers and disappear from the area.
Since its inception, the CCCC has concentrated on providing public education to ensure the protection of the Rocky Mountain Population of Greater Sandhill Cranes. In addition to the festival and educational programs for school children and community groups, CCCC monitors the status of cranes in the area and partners with other organizations engaged in habitat improvement projects for cranes and wildlife in Northwest Colorado. Since 2015 CCCC has spearheaded a new project called Crops for Cranes. CCCC is working with willing farmers and landowners in the Yampa Valley to help provide adequate food supplies for cranes just prior to migration. Click here to learn more about Crops for Cranes.
State officials have been working for years on the issue of water usage and replenishment of aquifers in the semi-arid San Luis Valley of Southwestern Colorado. The San Luis Valley is a critical staging area for the Rocky Mountain Population of Greater Sandhill Cranes. The cranes stop to rest and feed at the Alamosa and Monte Vista National Wildlife Refuges on both their northbound and southbound migrations. New state regulations could drastically limit water usage at the refuges. The Colorado Crane Conservation Coalition is actively monitoring this issue.
CCCC is primarily a volunteer organization. Each year more than 85 volunteers give of their time and energy to plan and manage our festival and educational programs. In 2017 we are proud to have hired our first part-time paid staff member to assist our volunteers. CCCC relies on the generosity of volunteers, sponsors and private individuals like you to help maintain all of our programs, including the Yampa Valley Crane Festival. We received our Federal 501(c)(3) non-profit status in May 2013; all donations/contributions are tax deductible.
Click here to read an article published March 16, 2018 in the Craig Press newspaper about progress in our “Crops for Cranes” program.
Click here to read an article about the Yampa Valley Crane Festival published Oct. 9, 2016 in the Wyoming Tribune Eagle newspaper.
Click here to read an article entitled “Rise of the Cranes” that was published in the Steamboat Pilot & Today newspaper on September 27, 2015.
Click here to read an article from Smithsonian Magazine about America’s 20 Best Small Towns. Steamboat Springs, the headquarters for our festival, is city number 4.