Archives for December 2010

TRNERR Reptiles and Amphibians

Coastal Horned Lizard © Phillip Roullard

 

Amphibians – Frogs & Toads
Hyla regilla Pacific Treefrog
Scaphiopus hammondii Western Spadefoot Toad
   
Amphibians – Salamander
Batrachoseps pacificus Pacific Slender Salamander
   
Reptiles – Lizards
Anniella pulchra California Legless Lizard
Cnemidophorus hyperythrus Orange-Throated Whiptail
Elgaria multicarinatus Southern Alligator Lizard
Eumeces skiltonianus Western Skink
Phrynosoma coronatum Coastal Horned Lizard
Sceloporus occidentalis Western Fence Lizard
Uta stansburiana Side-Blotched Lizard
   
Reptiles – Snakes
Charina trivirgata Coastal Rosy Boa
Crotalus viridis Southern Pacific Rattlesnake
Hypsiglena torquata Night Snake
Lampropeltis getula California King Snake
Leptotyphlops humilis Western Blind Snake
Masticophis flagellum Baja California Coachwhip
Masticophis lateralis California Whipsnake
Pituophis melanoleucus San Diego Gopher Snake
Thamnophis hammondii Two-Striped Garter Snake
   
Historically found at TRNERR
Arizona elegans Coastal glossy snake
Clemmys marmorata Western Pond Turtle
Crotalus exsul (ruber) Red diamond rattlesnake
Rhinocheilus lecontei Coastal long nosed snake
   
Non-native Species
Rana catesbiana Bullfrog
Trachemys scripta Red Eared Slider
Xenopus laevis African Clawed Frog

Learn More:

Visitor Center Map

Tijuana Estuary Visitor Center

301 Caspian Way
Imperial Beach, CA 91932

From the I-5 South/North: Take exit 4 – Coronado Avenue (not Coronado Bridge).  Head West on Coronado Avenue for approximately 2.5 miles. (Around 13th street, Coronado Avenue will turn into Imperial Beach Blvd; continue straight on).  Turn left on 3rd Street at the stop sign, then left on Caspian Way which leads into parking lot. (parking is free)

From Coronado: Take 75 South. Turn right on Rainbow Drive. Turn right onto Palm Avenue. Turn left on 3rd Street at the stop sign, then left on Caspian Way which leads into parking lot. (parking is free)

From Palm Avenue trolley station: Take bus #933 to 3rd Street and Imperial Beach Blvd.
Turn left on 3rd Street at the stop sign, then left on Caspian Way which leads into parking lot.

From Iris Avenue trolley station: Take bus #934 to 3rd Street and Imperial Beach Blvd. 
Turn left on 3rd Street at the stop sign, then left on Caspian Way which leads into parking lot. 

 
Border Field State Park

Physical Address
1500 Monument Rd.
San Diego, CA 92154
all mail should be sent to the visitor center

Open to vehicle traffic Saturday and Sunday, when road is not flooded.
From the I-5 South/North: Take exit 2 – Dairy Mart Road. Head Southwest on Dairy Mart Road. Dairy Mart Road will curve right onto Monument Road. Turn right (West) on Monument Road until you reach the park entrance.

From Imperial Beach: Head East on Imperial Beach Blvd (it will become Coronado Avenue in Imperial Beach). Just before you reach the freeway, turn right onto Hollister Street. Continue down Hollister until you reach Monument Road. Turn right (West) on Monument Road until you reach the park entrance.

 

 

Stewardship Volunteers

Purpose:

To care for the resources of the Tijuana River National Estuarine Research Reserve by establishing, restoring, and maintaining the native plant gardens and habitat at the Reserve; performing routine maintenance and stewardship of the trails; propagating quality local native plant stock in the native plant nursery for restoration efforts; removing graffiti and litter; and helping to cleanup the beaches.

Skills/ Qualifications:

Successful habitat restoration volunteers will be hard workers, be interested in restoring natural habitat, and be able to perform physical labor outdoors. Gardening experience is helpful but not required.

Duties:

Stewardship volunteers perform a variety of duties, depending on their schedules and interests. Duties can include removing invasive plant species, planting native species, collecting seeds, repairing disturbed natural areas, educating the public about the restoration process, propagating plants, removing brush, trimming overgrown vegetation, replacing signs, repairing broken fencing and handrails, and helping to maintain the nursery facility.

Reports To:

Stewardship Associate

Time:

4 hours per month (minimum) Sessions are held every Friday from 9 a.m. to 12 noon at the Visitor Center, as well as every Wednesday from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Border Field State Park.

Training:

All volunteers must first complete the online Volunteer Application. Once the application is received, you will be contacted to set up a volunteer interview where you will be able to ask questions about the program and fill out the necessary volunteer paperwork for California State Parks and the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service. In order to become more familiar with the Tijuana Estuary, we require that volunteers complete several online training modules which provide an overview of wetlands, estuaries, and the Core Programs here at TRNERR. In addition, stewardship volunteers will participate in on-the-job training that includes information on plant identification, invasive plant removal, and native plant gardening.

Benefits:

Develop gardening, trail maintenance, and landscaping skills. Learn about the estuarine environment. Become acquainted with the dedicated Reserve staff and their programs. Support indigenous plant and animal species, including those listed as rare and endangered. Enjoy the outdoors while volunteering. See firsthand the results of your work. Join a team of volunteers dedicated to restoring the natural environment.

To apply: Submit a Volunteer Application Form

Shorebird Stewards

Purpose:

To help protect and preserve the habitat of the threatened Western snowy plover, endangered California least tern, and other nesting species by monitoring beach use, educating beach users about dune and beach wildlife and habitat, and interpreting beach rules for visitors.

Skills/ Qualifications:

Successful Shorebird Steward volunteers will be mature, dependable, courteous, and sensitive to the needs and attitudes of others. They must have good communication skills, good physical health, and a passion for protecting threatened and endangered species. Birding experience is helpful but not required. Shorebird Steward volunteers must be at least 18 years old.

Duties:

  • Provide information about the nesting bird species and dune habitat to the public
  • Conduct brief visitor surveys.
  • Help beach users identify area birds with spotting scope and/or binoculars
  • Encourage questions and learning about conservation
  • Interpret beach rules in a way that encourages visitors to comply with those regulations voluntarily
  • Report beach rule violations to law enforcement
  • Record bird sightings on species list (optional)
Reports To:

Volunteer Coordinator and Stewardship Coordinator

Time & Locations:

Minimum 8 hours per month. Shorebird Steward volunteers will conduct public outreach on the beach during nesting season (mid-March through mid-September). Volunteers are stationed at the Tijuana Slough National Wildlife Refuge in Imperial Beach.

Training:

Shorebird Steward volunteers must participate in the TRNERR Information Ambassador Course and the Shorebird Steward training courses offered in the Spring. The course includes information on the natural history and nesting habitat of the nesting bird species, as well as training in public outreach and birding. Volunteers have the opportunity to participate in other volunteer training workshops at the Reserve as they are offered.

Benefits:

Learn about Western snowy plover, California least tern, and other bird habitat and nesting activity. Encourage the recovery of these species. Become acquainted with the dedicated Reserve staff and their programs. Enjoy the outdoors while volunteering. Join a team of volunteers dedicated to protecting endangered and threatened species.

To apply: Submit a Volunteer Application Form

Mounted Assistance Unit (MAU)

Please note:

This volunteer program is currently inactive at TRNERR. However, you can still volunteer to assist with trail patrols in the Tijuana River Valley with the San Diego County Department of Parks & Recreation. Please contact Cheryl Wegner at 858-966-1335 or cheryl.wegner@sdcounty.ca.gov

Purpose

To supplement regular ranger coverage of the Tijuana River National Estuarine Research Reserve (including Border Field State Park). To assist state park staff by patrolling areas which are easily accessible by horseback and reporting their observations and interactions with the public.

Skills/Qualifications

This position requires the ability to: ride a horse properly; read, write, and speak English at a level required for successful job performance; follow the directions of multiple park staff members; learn park rules and regulations; perform varied manual tasks; meet and interact with the public successfully; work weekends and holidays; communicate with law enforcement personnel; wear and maintain prescribed uniform.

Duties

Answer questions of the visiting public; give directions; explain park rules and regulations; assist with public information and educational programs such as nature walks/rides; clean-up trash; make park patrols; report violations to State Parks employees; report unsafe trail and facility conditions; and perform minor maintenance of trails and facilities.

Reports To

Community Outreach Coordinator and Park Ranger

Time

6 patrols per calendar year (minimum)

Training

All volunteers must complete the TRNERR Information Ambassador volunteer training. Rider and horse teams must demonstrate a series of skills during a training ride or in a simulated setting with a MAU-qualified rider. Each rider/horse team must have at least three “ride-alongs” totaling at least 10 hours of MAU riding time. If not, the rider/horse team must ride with a team that has this much time.

Benefits

Join a team of volunteer riders dedicated to improving the experience of visitors to the Reserve. Opportunity to provide equestrians, hikers, and bicyclists with area information and aid. Act as the eyes and ears of California State Parks to protect the park’s significant natural and cultural resources—on horseback!

 

Field & Lab Research Volunteers

For information on the Citizen Water Quality Monitoring Program, click here.

Field & Lab Research Volunteer

Purpose:

Contribute to the research conducted at the Tijuana River National Estuarine Research Reserve in an effort to improve scientific knowledge of estuarine habitat and inform habitat management strategies.

Skills/ Qualifications:

Successful field research volunteers will be dependable, enthusiastic, friendly, patient, and flexible. They should be interested in the wetland environment as well as able and eager to learn new things. Specific expertise may be required for some projects.

Duties:

Accompany Research Program staff on surveying and monitoring excursions and participate in projects as requested by staff. Help to record and analyze stewardship program activities in a scientific context in order to inform future stewardship projects.

Reports To:

Volunteer Coordinator and Research Coordinator

Time:

4 hours per month (minimum)

Training:

Research volunteers must complete the TRNERR Information Ambassador volunteer training course. Additional research program training is generally hands-on.

Benefits:

Learn about research conducted at the Tijuana River Watershed. Receive training on research procedures and protocols. Become acquainted with the Reserve staff and their programs. Contribute to the knowledge and conservation of an internationally recognized wetland.

To apply: Submit a Volunteer Application Form

Educational Docents

Purpose:

To promote and interpret the natural history and environment of the Tijuana River National Estuarine Research Reserve to visitors and students in order to encourage exploration and preservation of coastal resources.

Skills/ Qualifications:

Successful docents will be dependable, enthusiastic, friendly, patient, and flexible. They should be interested in the environment, be able to learn detailed information, and enjoy working with people of all ages.

Duties:

Upon successful completion of the Docent Training Course, docents will interpret the natural history and environment of the Tijuana River National Estuarine Research Reserve by conducting tours for visitors, working in the Visitor Center, and assisting in and conducting interpretive activities for school groups and young visitors. Docents can lead nature walks, staff the Visitor Center desk, greet the public, answer visitor questions, provide guests with information about the Reserve, assist with youth education activities, and conduct tours of the exhibit hall.

Reports To:

Volunteer Coordinator and Education Coordinator

Time:

4 hours per month (minimum)

Training:

A formal training course is required to become a Tijuana River National Estuarine Research Reserve docent. The course is typically held from March through April. It is a 35-hour course which includes ecology, botany, geology, ornithology, local history, international relations, and interpretive methods for both youth and adult audiences.

Benefits:

Receive comprehensive training on the natural history and environment of the Tijuana River Watershed. Become acquainted with the Reserve staff and their programs. Gain teaching skills and experience the joy of educating visitors on the value and beauty of the natural environment. Join a team of volunteers dedicated to helping the environment while enriching and enhancing the experience of all visitors to the Reserve.

To apply: Submit a Volunteer Application Form

Where can I find the Mexican Magpie Jay?

The Mexican Magpie Jay is usually seen on Hollister Street near the Bird and Butterfly Garden (Tijuana River Valley Regional Park).  They have also been seen at the entrance to Border Field State Park.  You can identify the Magpie Jay by its exceptionally long tail.

Is the Yellow Crown Night Heron still around?

Yes, a small colony of them is regularly seen at the north end of the Reserve near the Visitor Center.  They can usually be found on the North McCoy Trail.

What does the Light-footed Clapper Rail look like?

Adult Clapper Rail foraging in the pickleweed.

The Light-footed Clapper Rail is dark brown with a cinnamon colored breast and white under the tip of its short tail.  It looks like a marsh hen. Clapper Rail chicks are all black.   

 

Clapper Rails nest in cordgrass, their chicks are coal black.