Visitor Guidelines: Rules of the Preserve
The Preserve was established to protect the unique and rare habitats and wildlife of the Cosumnes River floodplain.
As such, visitors should use good judgment when recreating on the Preserve. Visitor use is concentrated on the two
developed trails around the Visitor Center to limit disturbance to these habitats and wildlife species. All Preserve rules
are established for the benefit of the resource and/or for the enjoyment and safety of those who want to experience nature.
Rules are plainly posted at the kiosks and in the trail brochure available at the Visitor Center.

Visitors to the Preserve should keep in mind the following guidelines:

  • No walking along flooded impoundment’s during the wet season. It scares up the waterfowl, which is a drain on their energy resources. Birds can
    be viewed from established trails and viewing areas.
  • Respect “Area Closed” signs. Public access is restricted and/or forbidden at several sensitive habitat areas.
  • Limit your disturbance to habitat and wildlife by staying on established roads and trails.
  • Do not approach, handle or feed any wildlife you may encounter.
  • Refrain from moving too close to dens or nest sites.
  • Leave seemingly abandoned wildlife alone. If you are concerned about an animal, report its location to Preserve staff or a volunteer on duty.
  • Be aware that poison oak, stinging nettle, poison hemlock, ticks, rattlesnakes, and mountain lions make this habitat their
  • Domestic pets and horses are not permitted on the Preserve.
  • Hunting, fishing, camping and launching of gas-powered motorized boats are not allowed at the Preserve. It is legal to fish or hunt from boats, in
    the river, a state navigable waterway, but only during the proper seasons and with the proper license(s). There are no restrictions to motorized
    boats on the Cosumnes. However, motorized boat use is difficult due to shallow and varying water depths and vegetative overgrowth.
  • Do not litter. The rule is to pack out everything that you packed in! As such, garbage cans are NOT made available for
    the public or for field trips. The Preserve does provide garbage bags in a dispenser on the Visitor Center deck, in case
    someone forgot to bring one of their own.
  • Collecting is prohibited (feathers, rocks, reptiles, plants, etc.).
  • Smoking and fires are not allowed on the Preserve.
  • Bicycles are not allowed on the trails, but can be locked up at the Visitor Center.

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