At the north edge of our Bufferlands property, next to bustling Interstate Highway 5, lies a showpiece wildlife sanctuary known as Upper Beach Lake. Passing motorists probably don’t realize that the shorebirds visible from the road enjoy this healthy natural habitat as a result of restoration efforts done by a coalition of public and private groups led by Regional San.
Beginning in 1989, Regional San joined the National Audubon Society, the Sacramento Job Corps Training Center and other groups in an ambitious effort to restore wildlife habitat on 650 acres of our land. With our Bufferlands resource management experts taking the lead, by 1995 this unique coalition had:
Planted more than 10,000 native trees and shrubs
Created and restored more than 300 acres of seasonal and permanent wetlands
Restored a large area to native perennial grassland habitat
Enhanced more than 20 acres of open water habitat.
The Sacramento Job Corps Training Center played a key role in Upper Beach Lake restoration efforts. Through the Corps’ vocational training program, more than 100 young people participated in restoration work, learning skills such as heavy equipment operation, mechanical maintenance, surveying, carpentry and cement masonry. The California Department of Parks and Recreation recognized the Job Corps contribution with a “Take Pride in California” award.
During the project, Job Corps volunteers used heavy equipment to construct levees for water flow management and to create islands and potholes within the wetlands. A section of Morrison Creek was realigned into a natural meander, improving habitat for fish and other wildlife.
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