National Public Lands Day 2012
Point Reyes National Seashore hosted a variety of events in recognition of National Public Lands Day 2012. The public was invited to join us on Saturday, September 29 to remove invasive cattails in the Giacomini Wetland and on Sunday, September 30 for a Habitat Restoration Project workday. Additionally, we offered the opportunity to experience tule elk during the rut (mating season) with our volunteer Tule Elk Docents on both Saturday and Sunday, September 29 and 30.
National Public Lands Day (usually observed on the fourth Saturday of September) is an annual event designed to encourage people to get outside and visit places such as Point Reyes National Seashore. National Public Lands Day is also a national volunteer effort to encourage folks to give back to the very lands we use to hike, bike, swim, explore, picnic, or just relax. It is the nation's largest hands-on volunteer effort to improve and enhance the public lands!
National Public Lands Day began in 1994 with three federal agencies and 700 volunteers. In 2008, 120,000 volunteers worked in over 1,800 locations and in every state. Now, eight federal agencies and many state and local lands participate in this annual day of caring for shared lands.
Below is a listing of events that were held at Point Reyes National Seashore on or in conjunction with the 2012 National Public Lands Day. All events were co-hosted by Point Reyes National Seashore Association.
Event: Control invasive cattails in the Giacomini Wetland
Visitors were invited to join the effort to keep open water habitat in Tomasini Pond as we cut back invasive hybrid cattails. Cutting the stalks below winter's water level helps control the hybrid's expansion into shallow open water zones of the pond. This allows growth and expansion of native plants and continued use of the pond by a diverse assemblage of bird, amphibian and mammalian wildlife.
Event: Experience Tule Elk
Every summer, visitors have the opportunity to see the tule elk during the rut (mating season) weekends and holidays July through September, weather permitting. Docents were stationed at the Tomales Point Trailhead and at Windy Gap (1 mile north along the Tomales Point Trail). Visitors had the opportunity to interact with volunteer docents who had binoculars and spotting scopes to allow visitors to observe elk rut behaviors.
Event: Habitat Restoration Workday
Volunteers had the opportunity to help protect and restore endangered plant and wildlife habitat at Abbott's Lagoon, the Lighthouse Bluffs, or other high value habitat areas at Point Reyes National Seashore. They visited some of the most beautiful areas in the park and helped eradicate invasive plant species encroaching upon rare, native habitat. Volunteers also learned about invasive plant ecology and the flora and fauna of Point Reyes National Seashore, while working up a sweat manually removing the nonnative European beachgrass, iceplant, and other invasive species.