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Securing Arizona's Water Future
Land Ownership in the Willcox Basin

Land ownership, including the percentage of ownership in each category, is shown for the Willcox Basin in Figure 3.14-2.   Principal features of land ownership in this basin are the abundance of private land and the diversity of land ownership types, seven total.  A description of land ownership data sources and methods is found in Volume 1, Appendix A.  More detailed information on protected areas is found in Section 3.0.4.  Land ownership categories are discussed below in the order from largest to smallest percentage in the basin.

Private

  • 51.1% of land is private.
  • The majority of the private land is through the center of the basin and is contiguous.
  • A small portion of private land in the southern tip of the basin remains in private ownership but is managed federally as the Leslie Canyon National Wildlife Refuge.
  • Primary land uses are farming, domestic, commercial, mining and industrial.

State Trust

  • 24.2% of land in this basin is held in trust for public schools and thirteen other beneficiaries under the State Trust Land System. 
  • Two large strips of state owned land are located north of Interstate 10 and the remainder of state owned land in the basin is interspersed with private land. 
  • A small portion of state trust land in the southern tip of the basin remains in state ownership but is managed federally as the Leslie Canyon National Wildlife Refuge.
  • Primary land use is grazing.

Click to view Figure 3.14-2

Click to view Figure 3.14-2 Willcox Basin

Land Ownership

National Forest

  • 19.6% of land is federally owned and managed by the United States Forest Service (USFS). 
  • Although the National Forest land is not contiguous, all lands are within the Coronado National Forest in two ranger districts, Douglas Ranger District south of Interstate 10 and the Safford Ranger District north of Interstate 10.
  • The basin contains most of the Chiricahua Wilderness area in the southeastern area of forest lands and a portion of the Galiuro Wilderness area in the northwestern area of forest lands.  (see Figure 3.0-12)
  • Primary land uses are recreation, grazing and timber production.

 U.S. Military

  • 2.3% of land is federally owned and managed by the U.S. Military.
  • All military land in the basin is part of the Willcox Range.
  • Primary land use is for military activities.

U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM)

  • 1.8% of land is federally owned and managed by the BLM.
  • BLM land is located southeast of Interstate 10 along the eastern basin boundary and in other small parcels scattered throughout the basin.
  • Primary land use is grazing.

National Park Service (NPS)

  • 0.9% of land is federally owned and managed by the NPS.
  • All park land is within the Chiricahua National Monument.
  • Primary land use is recreation.

Other (Game and Fish, County and Bureau of Reclamation Lands)

  • 0.1% of land is state owned and managed by Arizona Game and Fish Department.
  • All Game and Fish land in this basin is within the Willcox Playa Wildlife Area.
  • Primary land uses are wildlife protection and recreation.

 

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