Watsonville Wetlands Watch
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Get Involved

Volunteers Restore Habitat in the Watsonville Wetlands!

Saturday Restoration Days are a chance to work together and help bring back wildlife habitat in the Watsonville wetlands. Our group gets together every fourth Saturday of the month, but please consult the events calendar because this sometimes changes due to holidays.

Join us at 9 a.m. at the Fitz WERC (directions below). We’ll work until noon with some time for bird watching or a walk or hike to an interesting wetland location. We recommend that you wear sturdy shoes, layered clothes, a hat, and bring a water bottle. We supply the gloves, tools, and a snack.

No experience is necessary for any events, just a desire to help restore wildlife habitat to these amazing wetlands. People of all ages are encouraged, and community service credit is available!

Our typical activity changes with the seasons. In the fall months we are most often collecting native seed for propagation, or preparing the ground for the winter. In the winter months we are most often planting at various locations throughout the sloughs. Spring and Summer volunteer days are spent caring for native plants and undertaking a variety of interesting projects on the restoration sites.

Throughout the year we work in some of the most amazing parts of the approximately 800 acres of wetlands surrounding Watsonville and experience firsthand what makes these wetlands unique and so worthy of our hard work.

Join us! Feel free to call with questions. 831-728-4106

Directions

The Fitz Wetlands Educational Resource Center is located at the top of Pajaro Valley High School Campus (500 Harkins Slough Rd.) in Watsonville. Map and Directions.


Certify Your Garden as a “Wildlife Habitat”

Joan Rose in her garden“Recently, explained docent Joan Rose, I visited fellow WWW docent Cathy Gamble, whose garden has a sign proclaiming it is a ‘Certified Wildlife Habitat.’ As we walked through her low-maintenance, low-water landscape filled with bird life, Cathy explained the certification requirements, and I realized my garden has everything needed. Last week, I applied for certification.”

Your garden must provide basic habitat elements for wildlife. Your property must provide:

  1. Food — this might include: seeds, nuts, pollen, nectar, berries, foliage, leaf litter, supplemental feeders, suet
  2. Water, which might include: pond, stream, birdbath, shallow dish
  3. Cover to hide from predators, which might include: mature trees, thickets, shrubs, brush piles, dead trees
  4. Places to raise young, which might include: birdhouses, thickets, mature trees, milkweed plants for butterflies.

In addition, you must meet sustainable gardening practices, such as water conservation; growth of native vegetation; building healthy soil through composting and other methods; and eliminating chemical use in your landscape.

Submit an application for certification and a $20 registration fee to the National Wildlife Federation. You can find the application online at:  www.nwf.org Upon review, if your application meets the criteria, you will be notified of certification, and will be mailed a certificate and a sign to place in your yard. (All property sizes are acceptable — from large tracts of land to small city balconies.)

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