Archives for December 2010

Where can I find the endangered Light-footed Clapper Rail?

The Light-footed Clapper Rail is usually seen on the North McCoy Trail near the wooden bridge not far from the Visitor Center.  It can be observed during low tide foraging along the banks of the channel, or taking a quick bath.  It can also be seen during a high tide when it is flushed out of hiding.

When is the best time to see birds?

Generally during low tide, on the North McCoy trail, you will usually see a good variety of shorebirds feeding on the tidal mudflats, especially during fall/winter migrations.  High tides will often flush the Light-footed Clapper Rail into higher areas of the marsh.  The brackish ponds reached from the 5th and Iris Street trail offer a good look at migratory waterfowl and many other bird species found at the Reserve.  The rivermouth is an excellent place to see a variety of birds especially California Brown Pelicans. View Bird List.

What kinds of animals live within the Reserve?

Are there snakes?

We have over 370 species of birds, brush rabbits, jack rabbits, lizards, squirrels, grey foxes, and coyotes. In the Border Field area you may still find the bobcat but it is unusual. We do have rattlesnakes but they are rarely seen north of the river and are more common at Border Field. Stay on the trail when hiking. The California kingsnake, a natural predator of the rattlesnake, is commonly seen when the temperature is warm enough. The California kingsnake is not dangerous to humans. Find out more.

What do I need to cross the border?

What can I do in Tijuana?

I have questions about Tijuana…

The Tijuana Estuary Visitor Center does not have information on travel to Tijuana, but these organizations do:

How far is the Reserve from Mexico?

The southern boundary of the Reserve is the international border between Mexico and the United States.  However the Visitor Center is located in Imperial Beach and is approximately 3 miles from the border.

Does the Reserve rent horses?

No, we do not rent horses, however there places in the Tijuana River Valley that do rent horses.  These operations change frequently; please call our Visitor Center for the latest information, 619-575-3613. 

Read more information about horseback riding at Border Field, one of the few remaining places where equestrians can ride horses on the beach.

May I have a gathering of people meet at Border Field State Park?

A Special Event Permit is required for any company, society, organization, or group of persons greater than 25 individuals that wishes to hold, conduct, or participate in any celebration, service, picnic, exercise, or other special event in any park or beach in accordance with State Park rules and regulations (California Code of Regulations, Title 14, Section 4301(j).  Any group that has alcohol or catering is required to have a permit for any size group.

A Special Event Permit is also required for the use of state park lands for commercial photography (advertising, documentary, etc.).

Questions? Contact:
Special Events Coordinator
San Diego Coast District Office

School groups and other groups should contact the TRNERR Education Department for guided and non-guided visits.

Is Border Field State Park safe?

Yes. Reserve Law Enforcement patrols the park; in addition, Border Patrol is also present in the area.

Is there a lot of pollution in the area?

Sewage contamination continues to be an issue in the Tijuana River Valley, but much has improved in recent decades. International partnerships and the development of the South Bay International Wastewater Treatment Plant have largely limited sewage contaminated flows to the rainy season. During drier summer months, there is very little flow and the estuary remains one of the healthiest coastal wetlands in the region.

In addition to sewage pollution there is growing concerns of excessive sediment, trash, and invasive species. These are being actively addressed through programs such as the Tijuana River Valley Recovery Team and SWIA’s invasive plant program.

Is the Tijuana River currently flowing? Click to find out (SCCOOS). (IBWC)

Are local beaches closed? Click to find out or download the Waterkeeper Swim Guide app.

How far is the walk from the Border Field entrance gate to Monument Mesa?

It is approximately 1.6 miles.  We recommend that you walk directly to west to the beach (1 mile) and then south to Monument Mesa (0.6 miles) so that you avoid seasonal flooding in the road.