Early this morning, Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-Dublin) joined Save The Bay and California Coastal Conservancy staff at Eden Landing for an Earth Day planting event. Swalwell, who was elected to Congress in 2012, didn’t hesitate to get his hands dirty.
In partnership with the South Bay Salt Ponds Restoration Project and California Department of Fish and Game, Save The Bay is working to restore transition zone habitat adjacent to tidal wetlands at Eden Landing Ecological Reserve on the eastern shore of San Francisco Bay in Hayward. We bring volunteers out for hands-on restoration and stewardship projects to improve habitat, furthering the connection between our communities and the Bay.
On this beautiful morning, Congressman Swalwell helped us plant Seaside Arrowgrass (Triglochin maritima), one of many species critical to the transition zone where dry land slopes down in to open waters. Native plants like Arrowgrass thrive here, and provide critical habitat for threatened and endangered species like the Salt Marsh Harvest Mouse.
Want to come out and join us for a planting day? Check out our public program calendar and reserve a spot today.
Throughout the school year, Save The Bay runs programs with high school students and I always greatly enjoy working with this age group. I am particularly impressed when young people choose to spend a portion of their weekend volunteering to help preserve our tidal marshes. Amid homework, sports games, SATs, college applications, and a number of other activities, these students have set aside time to give back to their community.
Check out these photos of high school students hard at work restoring our sites at Eden Landing in Hayward and Byxbee Park in the Palo Alto Baylands. We are so inspired by their enthusiasm for restoring San Francisco Bay!
Eden Landing, Hayward
Byxbee Park, Palo Alto Baylands
When asked why they volunteer with Save The Bay, students responded:
“It’s cool to learn about different plants.” -Amanda
“I like learning about the species and everyone is really nice.” -Divya
“I’ve been coming since September. I really like how the place feels…Last time I came, I saw a Jackrabbit!” – Jenet
Family reunions can be wonderfully meaningful events, especially when they don’t involve awkward conversations and mandatory group photos with your distant relatives. Last month, Save The Bay reunited with its “family” of ten community-based conservation organizations in Tampa, FL for their biennial conference. The consortium, collectively referred to as Restore America’s Estuaries (RAE), was joined by hundreds of other participants from government agencies, academic institutions, consulting firms, and non-profits. Representatives from Save The Bay included David Lewis (our Executive Director), Donna Ball (Restoration Director), Laura Wainer (Senior Scientist), Dylan Chapple (a past Restoration staff now getting his PhD at UC Berkeley), and me, Seth Chanin.
Over the course of five days, conference attendees exchanged restoration strategies, community-based program structures, experimental outcomes, and educational techniques. Laura delivered a wonderful presentation on the experimental planting work we are doing at Oakland’s Arrowhead Marsh, and Dylan shared the results of the work he is doing to test the use of soil amendments at Eden Landing in Hayward. I also had a chance to present at the conference, joining educators from the Galveston Bay Foundation and North Carolina Coastal Federation to teach a workshop on education program evaluation techniques.
Though the conference sessions at Restore America’s Estuaries were tremendously informative, the most valuable aspect of my time in Florida was the opportunity for networking and informal sharing of experiences. Field trips, meals, and explorations around downtown Tampa provided ample opportunity for memorable conversations with peers from other organizations, many of which have continued over email and phone.
I hope to reunite with the RAE family again in 2014!