Habitat Restoration & Creation
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To achieve no net loss of jurisdictional wetlands and waters and to contribute to the recovery of certain covered species, the Plan requires not only preservation but also the restoration of certain land cover types. Over the 30-year life of the plan, the Conservancy anticipates restoring or creating up to 500 acres of wetlands and ponds and six miles of streams, dependent on how much is necessitated by development impacts in the Plan area.
To date, 11 restoration projects have been constructed. Six of the restoration projects have met success criteria and are no longer monitored annually against their restoration success criteria. The remaining projects continue to be monitored and adaptively managed to ensure success criteria are met. A map of Conservancy restoration projects that have been completed or are in planning is linked below.
Map of ECCCHC Restoration Projects (PDF)
In 2008, the Conservancy constructed the first restoration project. It is a 1.10-acre seasonal pool on a site in Vasco Caves in the Vasco Hills-Byron Vernal Pools management area. The pond was designed to provide breeding habitat for California tiger salamander and to support seasonal wetland vegetation. Following construction, the pond was monitored for an eight-year period (2008 – 2016) to ensure success criteria for wetlands established by the U.S. Army Corp of Engineers were met. In 2017, following a comprehensive analysis of the hydrology and vegetation of the site, it was determined that the pool had been successfully established as a seasonal wetland. Additionally, California tiger salamander individuals have been found utilizing the pond habitat during several breeding seasons.
The Horse Valley Valley Creek and Wetland Restoration Project is a joint project currently being implemented by the Conservancy and the East Bay Regional Park District. It is a 71-acre restoration site located in on the Roddy Ranch property. The project created 37 pools totaling 2.25 acres of restored seasonal wetland habitat, and 4,150 linear feet of intermittent stream channel. Additionally, an existing paved road and artificial channel were decommissioned. The goals of this project are to restore the site’s historic function and remove artificial alterations that have impacted site hydrology and habitat quality. The project is currently being managed and monitored to ensure that project success criterion, including site hydrology, vegetation cover, and viability of habitat for California red-legged frog and California tiger salamander, are being met.
Projects in Planning
The Conservancy also has several large restoration projects currently in the planning phase.
Knightsen Wetland Restoration Project
The Knightsen Wetland Restoration Project is a a habitat restoration project to be implemented on a 645-acre property east of the community of Knightsen, in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta region of Contra Costa County. The project team is in the process of refining plans that will create and restore wetland habitat, manage stormwater flows, improve water quality in the Delta, and explore potential opportunities for recreation. More resources about this project, including links to community meetings and technical studies, can be found here.
Former Roddy Ranch Golf Course
The Roddy Ranch Golf course was a 230-acre, 18-hole golf course at the south end of Antioch, CA. The land was acquired by the East Bay Regional Park District, in partnership with the Conservancy in 2018. The Park District and the Conservancy are working to develop a Restoration and Public Access Plan, with the goal of eventually opening the area into a public park. Goals for the project include restoring native grassland and wetland habitat, creating paths and facilities for passive public recreation, and creating opportunities for hands-on restoration projects involving youth and community members. More resources about this project, including technical studies and information on community events, can be found here.