Partnering to conserve birds and their habitats for current and future generations

Together We Can Make A Difference

To learn more, watch the Central Valley Joint Venture in Action in our Award-Winning Mini-Documentary!

A flock of flying Dunlin, a blurred wetland in the background.

Dunlin, Mike Peters

The Central Valley Joint Venture

What we do

Guided by a 20-member management board, the Central Valley Joint Venture (CVJV) uses the best available science to set bird population and habitat objectives that are aligned with several national and international bird conservation plans, which focus voluntary conservation in the Central Valley. The CVJV also provides practical information and guidance for improving bird habitat to policymakers, state and federal agencies, private landowners, local governments, conservation organizations, and corporations. Additionally, the CVJV helps strategically leverage and increase investments in bird habitats on public and private lands in the Central Valley to support healthy wild bird populations, benefiting local communities.

  • We bring science to conservation policy, programs, and implementation.
  • We foster working partnerships among public and private landowners to maximize the benefits for communities as well as the wildlife.
  • We support landscape-scale conservation.
  • We connect people with the outdoors.
Central Valley

Why is it so Important

Once a vast mosaic of wetlands, floodplain forests, grasslands, oak woodlands, and saltbush scrub, California’s Central Valley provided vital habitat for millions of migrating and resident birds of the Pacific Flyway. Today, only 5 percent of the Valley’s native wetlands and forested riversides remains in a somewhat natural state. It's estimated that over a 100 million birds of approximately 400 species still depend on the Central Valley for their survival.

A trout jumping over rapids.

Steve Martarano

The Key to Life in the Valley


Adequate water supplies are critical for wetland-dependent bird habitat, which includes both managed wetlands (such as refuges) and flooded agricultural lands. Water creates the well-recognized flooded ponds and moist, marshy soils that characterize wetlands everywhere.

In the Central Valley, wetland-dependent bird habitat is almost entirely “managed,” either as semi-permanent or seasonal wetlands, or on flooded agricultural lands that provide a wetland habitat function.

Ensuring reliable and affordable water supplies for wetland habitat management may be our greatest challenge. 

Central Valley Joint Venture

Our Mission

Partnering to conserve Central Valley birds and their habitats for current and future generations.

Central Valley Joint Venture

How we work

The CVJV cultivates and supports partnerships that protect and restore habitat for the benefit of birds, other wildlife, and people. We provide partners with critical scientific, human dimensions, technical, and policy guidance and support to plan and carry out the most effective on-the-ground bird habitat conservation efforts. 

Our Foundation


The CVJV applies the best available science to develop our conservation objectives. We pull together local and national scientists who, using data from the region, employ established methods and models to determine the habitat required for thriving populations of birds in the Central Valley today and into the future.

Photo of Redhead taking flight off of wetland.

Mike Peters

An aerial photo of a meandering river through bright green floodplains.


The CVJV works in 9 planning region.


An American Bittern hiding well behind dry grasses. His greenish-yellow eye is peering out.


The CV is a vast mosaic of diverse habitats

Brian Gilmore

A Yellow-breasted Chat on a twig against a bue sky.


100,000,000 birds of 400 species pass through

Tom Grey

The Valley's Role in Reaching California's 30X30 Goals (scroll)