Western Joshua Tree (Yucca brevifolia) Transplanting Pilot Study


SCH Number
Public Agency
California Department of Fish and Wildlife, Habitat Conservation Planning (CDFW)
Document Title
Western Joshua Tree (Yucca brevifolia) Transplanting Pilot Study
Document Type
NOE - Notice of Exemption
Document Description
The California Department of Fish and Wildlife is issuing a permit to WRA Inc. [Permit No. 2081(a)-22-002-RP] pursuant to Fish and Game Code section 2081(a) for a pilot study project to determine the viability of translocating western Joshua trees (WJT) and examine survivorship just outside the natural range of the species at Petersen Ranch. As climate change is predicted to reduce the range of Joshua trees, translocation to areas with higher elevation and cooler temperatures like Petersen Ranch may provide important data on capacity for range expansion and serve as a strategy for species conservation. Project activities include translocating 27 WJTs that are currently in holding both in-ground and in containers at AVRCD nursery to three planting areas at Petersen Ranch. Survivorship, vigor, number of stems/branches, number of inflorescences, observational occurrences of Yucca moths, and presence or absence of juveniles or seedlings will be monitored annually for three years following transplantation activities.

Contact Information

Joanne Heraty
Agency Name
California Department of Fish and Wildlife, Habitat Conservation Planning Branch
Job Title
Senior Environmental Scientist- Specialist
Contact Types
Lead/Public Agency


Los Angeles
Countywide, Southern California
Other Location Info
The Western Joshua Tree (Yucca brevifolia) Transplanting Pilot Study (Project) will take place in Los Angeles County at Petersen Ranch, located at 13216 Johnson Road, Lake Hughes, CA 93532 (34.65717, -118.36197; 3,228 feet elevation). Planting locations are identified in Figure 1 and Figure 5 of Attachment 1 (Research Proposal dated June 22, 2022). Western Joshua trees used for the pilot experiment will be translocated from the Antelope Valley Resource Conservation District (AVRCD) Nursery located at 10148 West Avenue I, Lancaster, CA 93536 (34.70348, -118.31023; 2,359 feet elevation).

Notice of Exemption

Exempt Status
Categorical Exemption
Type, Section or Code
Sections 15306 and 15307, Classes 6 and 7
Reasons for Exemption
The Project will facilitate the recovery of the Candidate Species, western Joshua tree (Yucca brevifolia) by collecting data on viability of translocation and range expansion. The permit issued by the California Department of Fish and Wildlife for the Project includes measures to ensure that existing populations of Yucca brevifolia are not negatively impacted.
County Clerk
Los Angeles


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