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Success in the wetlands

August 01, 2008

Re "Restorations," editorial, July 26

It's no surprise that the Bolsa Chica wetlands are doing so splendidly. Wildlife, literally starved for food sources, will flock to restored wetlands, which are so desperately needed in California. Here at the Ballona Wetlands, where partial restoration has begun, the results are spectacular. At the dunes, we have replaced ice plant and weeds with native vegetation, some of which, no longer smothered by weeds, has popped up on its own after many years of hibernation.

The freshwater marsh, created to interact with the restored salt marsh, supports more species of birds than the entire Ballona ecosystem has during the 30 years that Friends of Ballona Wetlands has existed. The tide gates, changed several years ago, have brought saltwater into Ballona for the first time in many years. The Belding's Savannah sparrow (an endangered species) has increased its population at Ballona.

When completed, the Ballona Wetlands will be yet another jewel in the necklace of fully functioning wetlands along the California coastline. As Bolsa Chica demonstrates, it can be done and we will all be richer for it.

Ruth Lansford

Founder, Friends of

Ballona Wetlands

Playa del Rey

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