January 6, 2022, Riverside, CA: Rivers and Lands Conservancy (RLC) is pleased to announce newest conservation property, the Hillpointe Conservation Easement. This now permanently protected property is located in the City of Chino Hills in San Bernardino County. Encompassing roughly 8 acres of open space, the Hillpointe property includes riparian scrub and forest, coastal sage scrub, and grasslands habitats as well as wetlands that provide retention of flood waters, sediment, and nutrients.

Hillpointe provides habitats for the least Bell’s vireo (Vireo bellii pusillus), an endangered species, and the California gnatcatcher (Polioptila californica californica), a threatened species, as well as other wildlife.

The least Bell’s vireo winters in Southern Mexico, returning to southern California by mid-March to early April. The species has suffered a significant range-wide decline in population due to extensive riparian habitat loss and brood parasitism by the brown-headed cowbird. It was listed as federally endangered in 1986. A shy songbird, these small grey-green birds are chatty, with males singing a range of territorial tunes. Biologists often liken the pattern of their signature call to the sound of buffing a window “squeaky clean.”

The Hillpointe conservation easement protects critical wildlife linkages to nearby Chino Hills State Park and the Prado Basin. Hillpointe is not open to the public but serves to protect these open spaces for habitat and species survival.

RLC manages conserved lands for public benefit by protecting, enhancing, and restoring natural resources. RLC currently stewards 57 conservation properties that total nearly 2,600 acres of permanently protected open space. For 33 years, Rivers and Lands Conservancy has been instrumental in acquiring and preserving over 14,500 acres of open space valued at over $90 Million including properties that have been transferred to conservation partners.