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  • Writer's pictureMark L. Johnson

TA Tidbits #39-Saguaros, BioBlitz & H2O

Tortolita Preserve-Fiery Monsoon Skies


Old Growth Sagauro Deaths-Bacterial Infection & Climate Change

Strong-arm passed on 8/4/22 and is decaying rapidly (see photo left). Other old growth saguaros are experiencing the same demise. See photo (middle) of saguaro in the Tortolita Preserve with arms coming down and photo (right) of saguaro along the Alamo Springs trail completely down.

A recent article by Isabella Fredrickson (Cronkite News) suggests that this phenomenom is a combination of bacterial necrosis (erwinia cacticida) and climate change. You download and read the article at the link below.

Climate change, bacteria killing saguaros in Sonoran Desert
Download PDF • 32KB


Tortolita Preserve BioBlitz Update

The BioBlitz partners (TA, Marana Parks & Recreation, Coalition For Sonoran Desert Protection, Pima Naturalists and Arizona Game & Fish) are close to finalizing the details for the November 19 BioBlitz.

You will be able to sign-up for this event soon and join a group or go on your own for a short hike or longer hike and observe and record plants and wildlife in the Tortolita Preserve. The BioBlitz will be using the iNaturalist cell phone application to identify and record species. If you have not used iNaturalist, no fears, training will be provided.

Please set aside Saturday morning November 19 and join us at the Moore Road Trailhead for the first Tortolita Preserve BioBlitz.


Hot Water Recirculation Pump Saves Precious Water

Do you have a tankless hot water heater that does not have a recirculation pump? Does it take several minutes for the hot water to arrive at your shower or sink? Consider installing a hot water recirculation pump and save 9,000 to 12,000 gallons of water each year.

It is a simple installation (see photo above). This is a TacoGenie hot water recirculation pump (1 gallon/minute at 12' TDH). This pump is located in the master bathroom under the sink. The tankless hot water heater is located in the garage on the opposite side of the house.

Here's how it works; (1) motion detector in bathroom turns on the pump, (2) water from hot water line (left) is pumped into the cold water line (right) and recirculates to the hot water heater, (3) after a few minutes the hot water warms up and a temperature sensor at the pump turns the pump off when the water temperature heats up to preset level. No water is wasted!

The master bathroom shower is located across from this sink. It used to take about 2.5 minutes off running the water to get to a temperature comfortable to take a shower. This wasted 5 gallons of water down the drain. Now the water warms up in 10 seconds! Other showers and sinks in the house also benefit from this hot water recirculation pump.

The Town of Marana needs to change the plumbing code to require hot water recirculation pumps for all new construction. Tucson Water and Marana Water need to offer rebates as incentives to install these water savings devices in existing homes. The cost for this installation was $1,500. Contact your plumber and get one installed soon.


Marana Town Council Nixes White Stallion Ranch Proposed Annexation

On 9/13/22, the Marana Town Council held a Study Session to hear about a proposal to develop 218 acres of the White Stallion Ranch area (Saunders Amos LLC) and annex into Marana.

Well guess what? The majority of Town Council members voiced opposition to the annexation based on "lack of water resources". Looks like our message is finally getting through!

You can download and read the Study Session minutes at the link below.

2889_9-13-2022 Council Study Session Summary Minutes
Download PDF • 332KB


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