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Edson Fichter Nature Area - The Ifft Grant and Idaho Master Naturalists

Jessa talks with Maria Pacheretti and Sarah Jackson about Pocatello’s local treasure, Edson Fichter Nature Area, and how the recently acquired Ifft Grant has helped improve cleanliness and biodiversity.

“The Edson Fichter Nature Area is located just minutes from downtown Pocatello and offers outdoors enthusiasts a convenient escape close to home. The Portneuf River runs through this 40-acre site which also features paved trails, a 3-acre fishing pond with docks, an amphitheater, and plenty of wildlife from otters to eagles and an occasional moose.” Idaho Fish and Game, 2023.

In 2023, Pocatello’s own nature oasis received an Ifft Grant for habitat improvement. This beautiful area is already brimming with wildlife habitat, boasting over 350 different species. But Maria Pacioretty, Regional Wildlife Habitat Biologist with Idaho Fish and Game, saw a need for more native plants to be installed around the nature area, allowing for more vegetative diversity. The Ifft Grant made these enhancements possible. In this episode of Sustainable Idaho, Maria gives an overview of Edson Fichter and explains some improvements for new and returning visitors to look out for.

In addition, the Idaho Master Naturalists are an invaluable resource for the Edson Fichter Nature Area. Idaho Master Naturalist Mike Larkin was actually the one who submitted the application of the Ifft Grant, and he is one of many volunteers who have helped with the improvements and general upkeep of the area. Sarah Jackson explains in this episode what exactly an Idaho Master Naturalist is, and how the High Desert Chapter members have proved invaluable to the beautification and management of Edson Fichter.

Further resources! 

Portneuf Resource Council’s new website:

Idaho Master Naturalist Program:

“Recreating at the Edson Fichter Nature Area in Pocatello—the Dos and Don’ts!”

“Edson Fichter Nature Area Receives Ifft Grant for Habitat Improvements,” July 11, 2023.

Edson Fichter Nature Talks Topics from September 2023:

Edson Fichter Pond and Nature Area on Visit Pocatello:

Jessa is in her final year of her undergraduate career, pursuing three majors: English with Creative Writing, History, and Global Studies with an emphasis in French Language and Literature. She is a published author through ISU's Black Rock & Sage literary magazine and hopes to join the Sustainability Club at ISU. Her sustainability journey began with her year abroad when she interned for Letters to the Earth, an organization dedicated to environmental sustainability. She hopes to work for Amnesty International until she can write books in the mountains full time.