Wednesday, August 8, 2007: 4:00 PM-8:45 PM
Lower Level Lobby, San Jose McEnery Convention Center
FT 18 - Checkerspot butterfly and grassland restoration and work party at Edgewood County Park and Natural Preserve
Edgewood County Park and Natural Preserve, an open space of 467 acres, is known for its amazing biodiversity and beautiful wildflower displays. Over 500 different plant species occur at Edgewood, including 3 that are federally listed as endangered or threatened, and 15 that are listed in the California Native Plant Society (CNPS) Inventory of Rare and Endangered Plants. Edgewood was the last San Francisco Bay Area home of the Bay checkerspot butterfly (Euphydryas editha ssp. bayensis), a federally threatened animal. In the late 1980’s, weeds were recognized as threatening Edgewood’s plant communities, and a CNPS-sponsored volunteer weed management program was begun. Under this highly successful program, over 40 acres are being treated on a continuing basis, more than 2.5 million individual invasive plants have been removed since recordkeeping began in 1999, over 17,000 volunteer hours have been logged, and many habitats have been restored to pristine condition. The weeding program has historically focused on forbs, and in the early 2000’s, non-native grass infestations drove the Bay checkerspot butterfly to local extinction. Since then, a scientific program has been in place to restore the butterfly’s habitat. This program will culminate in 2007 with the reintroduction of checkerspot caterpillars and butterflies. In addition, a 2-year project focusing on grasslands, funded through a $50,000 California Department of Food & Agriculture grant, began in 2007. In spring 2007, adult butterflies were sighted at the preserve, a direct result of the reintroduction program. This field trip will showcase the various restoration projects at Edgewood and you can choose to help with weeding as part of the afternoon. You will visit habitats that have been restored, including that of the Bay checkerspot butterfly, as well as areas that have not yet been tackled. You will learn about techniques that have proven successful in restoring this exemplary site. You will have the option of joining weekly weed volunteers to remove invasive plants or gather habitat information. Hiking shoes, long pants, and a hat are recommended. Gloves and tools will be provided for work party. We will be traveling off-trail along uneven ground, and we may encounter but should be able to avoid contact with poison oak, occasional spiders, and possibly snakes. This field trip is suitable for older children who can tolerate the hot sun and might want to participate in the work party. . Edgewood County Park and Natural Preserve
Organizer:Bill Korbholz, Friends of Edgewood Natural Preserve

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