Background: In 1993 the Bureau of Land Management Redding Field Office acquired approximately 60 acres of land bordering an existing parcel in eastern Shasta County. PG&E acquired the new land from other private companies and then deeded the parcels to the BLM as part of a mitigation effort for a gas pipeline within the existing BLM parcel. This mitigation effort aimed to promote the health of a stand of Baker cypress (Hesperocyparis bakeri), a rare species of cypress tree, which would be impacted by the construction of the pipeline. The mitigation plan called for the acquisition and subsequent protection of surrounding Baker cypress stands as well as the restoration of the area directly impacted by the construction of the pipeline. This restoration consisted primarily of planting Baker cypress seedlings. This parcel is located eight miles south-southwest of Burney, just east of Tamarack Road. The parcel is located in the western halves of Sections 24 and 25, T. 34N, R. 2E. This agreement will cover the whole 178 acres of this parcel. This includes approximately 60 acres of Baker cypress stands and 25 acres of forest land suitable for small scale timber removal. The surrounding area consists almost exclusively of privately managed commercial forest land. Baker cypress is not a commercially desirable species and as such is often subjected to vegetation type conversions. In the 1993 Redding Resource Management Plan and Record of Decision, this area was designated as a Research Natural Area (RNA) and an Area of Critical Environmental Concern (ACEC). The BLM defines RNAs as "special management areas designatedÂż to preserve and protect typical or unusual ecological communities, associations, phenomena, characteristics, or natural features or processes for scientific and educational purposes. They are established and managed to protect ecological processes, conserve biological diversity, and provide opportunities for observation for research and education." The Federal Land Policy and Management Act defines ACECs as areas where "special management attention is requiredÂż to protect and prevent irreparable damage to important historic, cultural, or scenic values, fish and wildlife resources and other natural systems or processes, or to protect life and safety from natural hazards." The 1993 Redding Resource Management Plan and Record of Decision argues for the designation of this area as an ACEC because the location "warrants protection from any further disturbance" in order to insure a suitable "population for further research and study of this interesting but vulnerable species." Baker cypress is a species of rare cypress tree thought to only exist in 11 disparate locations throughout the northern Sierra Nevada, Cascade, and Siskiyou Mountains. There is a high diversity and genetic differentiation between the various populations of Baker cypress, which increases the need to protect each distinct stand. Baker cypress can grow in association with chaparral, mixed evergreen, or montane coniferous forest in generally infertile soils from elevations of 3,795 to 7,042 feet. Baker cypress is a California Native Plant Society list 4 species, meaning that it is a species of limited distribution and should be monitored for population decline. Baker cypress is a fire adapted species with closed, or serotinous, cones which only open after a fire. Additionally, the seeds need high light situations and exposed mineral soils in order to germinate, characteristics often found after an area has burned. However, after years of fire suppression regeneration is often limited. Since the new land was acquired by the BLM and the parcelÂżs designation as an RNA and ACEC was finalized in 1993, no management actions or research attempts have occurred on this land. The Baker cypress stands in this area are showing signs of aging and senescence. Many trees have been blown over by high winds. Additionally, many Baker cypress trees are being overtopped and shaded out by other conifer species, especially Douglas-fir. These factors make this area a great candidate for a restoration and research effort. Objectives: In order to better protect and promote the health of this Baker cypress Stand, the Redding Field Office aims to engage in a restoration, research, and stewardship partnership. The designation of this land as both an RNA and an ACEC provides management guidance for the continued protection of the species and the beginning of an associated research project. Due to the declining health of the Baker cypress stand, restoration work to improve growing conditions and stimulate regeneration of the stand will be important parts of this partnership. There is very little known about Baker cypress as a species and even less known about best management strategies for the species. With this partnership, the Redding Field Office aims to increase knowledge of how to best manage this stand into the future. Public Benefit: The public will benefit from this partnership through two avenues. First, the restoration work itself will protect and promote the health of this particular Baker cypress stand. Because of its limited and disjointed distribution, the health of every extant stand is important for the continued success of the species. Additionally, Baker cypress stands provide different habitat opportunities for both plants and wildlife. By protecting this stand, this restoration partnership will improve available wildlife and plant habitat for associated species. Second, this partnership will increase knowledge of how to best manage all Baker cypress stands. This will enable the use of best management practices across the range of the species on various public and private lands. In this way, a research partnership will benefit the public at large.