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Restoring our South Bay Wetlands

Ever wonder how much work it takes to take salt ponds and revive them to working wetlands? Well, 12 hardy souls joined San Francisco Bay Bird Observatory biologist Cole Jower and a few staff interns to remove weeds and plant native seedlings to improve habitat for many of the wetland wildlife.

At a location on a levee of the Don Edwards Refuge where California Goldfields had recently been planted, volunteers learned a bit about the restoration efforts and the hard work that has been in the making for decades to breach levees, maintain select levees, the wildlife that requires restored habitat, such as the threatened Ridgway's Rail bird and endangered Salt Marsh Harvest Mouse, and the advance of sea level rise.

California Goldfields
California Goldfields with the Diablo Range as a backdrop. Photo by Deb Kramer

First, volunteers removed weeds, such as the New Zealand Spinach and ice plant.

Additional volunteers removed grasses that were smothering side of the levee.

Finally, about 50 native coastal gum plant seedlings were planted alongside the levee to help provide habitat, food, and support along the levee. And, working away, a pupa of large yellow underwing moth.

All seemed to feel a sense of accomplishment while enjoying opportunities to listen to the birdsong and view quite a variety of birds, including western gulls, coots, egrets, and herons.

We hope you have an opportunity to visit the refuge and take in the beauty of the wildlife and views.


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