The Round Valley Wildlife Area is composed of two management units: 1) the northern 272-acre Swall Meadows Unit located in Mono County at 6,000 feet in elevation at the foot of the dramatic Wheeler Crest, and 2) the lower elevation Pine Creek Unit (100 acres) in Round Valley, Inyo County to the south. The primary purpose for the wildlife area is to provide high quality winter range, migration corridor, and spring holding area habitats for mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus ssp. hemionus) of the Round Valley herd. This herd, which occupies one of the most popular deer hunt zones in the state (X9A), has experienced significant population fluctuations over the last 25-years with habitat loss associated with residential development and wildfire identified as significant threats.
The wildlife area supports the water birch thickets, a sensitive natural community, along perennial creeks and upland areas of sagebrush-bitterbrush scrub. Bitterbrush occurs in dense stands along drainages, around meadow edges, and on well-drained alluvial fans and is an important food source for deer in winter and spring.
For more information, call the Inland Deserts Region's Bishop office at (760) 872-1171.