During the recent winter quarter, undergraduate student researcher Alistair Dobson led a grant-funded study of the wildlife that may be living in or visiting the hibernacula on the NCOS Mesa and upper salt marsh. He deployed a combination of motion-detection cameras and tracking tunnels at several hibernacula, and with a lot of help reviewing tens of thousands of images, he has compiled some preliminary data with a few interesting and surprising results. Read more about it and check out some of the photos here!
Education and outreach are two key elements of CCBER’s mission, and we are continuously looking for new ways to expand these efforts and involve the local community at UCSB’s open spaces. With the community’s growing interest and use of NCOS, and to help extend our education efforts related to this restoration project, we are excited to announce the launch of the NCOS Nature Guide program this April! Read more here.
In collaboration with partners such as UCSB students, faculty and labs, as well as volunteers, the Santa Barbara Audubon Society, and Coal Oil Point Reserve, CCBER has implemented a multi-faceted monitoring and research program that aims to understand several aspects of the Devereux Slough wetland and its restoration. Read more about the types of monitoring and research taking place and what some of the results are telling us so far.
Sightings of sickly looking bobcats, coyotes, and other wildlife are becoming more common in and near urban areas. These animals have a severe case of mange, and there is increasing evidence that suggests it could be linked to the ubiquitous poison used to control rats. Read more about this issue and how CCBER is working with campus management to find alternative ways to control rats on UCSB property, and what you can do to help save impacted wildlife.
Last winter, CCBER began conducting quarterly acoustic surveys for bats at NCOS. In this story, we describe how we are recording bat calls, how we identify the potential species present at NCOS, and what the data collected during 2020 tells us.
A long-term goal of the North Campus Open Space (NCOS) restoration project is to develop a diverse, multi-level food web, which is often a good indicator of a healthy, well-functioning ecosystem. Read our latest feature story about two components of the food web we have recently begun monitoring: small mammals such as mice and voles, and reptiles.
This summer, CCBER conducted the 3rd year of vegetation monitoring at the North Campus Open Space restoration project. With three years of this data, we can now see more clearly how the restoration is progressing, and where more work or a change in management may be needed. Here we report on some of this year’s data and what it is telling us.
As the NCOS project got underway, we were concerned about the 25 acres of invasive weeds between NCOS and South Parcel that could easily colonize the newly restored site. Fortunately, with a grant funded by the Environmental Enhancement and Mitigation Program (EEM), our efforts to control the inhospitable weeds in what we call the EEM zone of NCOS have created openings for natural and planted restoration. Read more in this report by Beau Tindall, CCBER’s project leader at EEM and South Parcel.
Amenities that support public access and engagement at NCOS are a vital component of the project. We want to hear from you about your thoughts and ideas on these features and the long term management priorities for NCOS. Read more and learn how to register for an upcoming NCOS Town Hall webinar.
Perennial bunch grasslands are becoming increasingly rare in California, and diverse grasslands with wildflowers are even more rare. Restoration projects like UCSB's North Campus Open Space are working to curb that trend. Learn more about a project funded by the Garden Club of Santa Barbara to test different strategies for diversifying the restored grassland on the NCOS Mesa.