Giacomini Wetland Restoration Project: Tenth Anniversary Celebration

Aerial photo of recently restored wetlands. A narrow bay stretches off in the distance. A wooded ridge borders the wetlands and bay on the left. A small town is located in the lower right.
 
Dozens of people sitting on chairs in a large white-walled room.

On Saturday, October 27, 2018, more than 100 people crowded in the Red Barn to celebrate the Tenth Anniversary of the Giacomini Wetland Restoration Project. Speakers highlighted how the restoration Project Area has evolved since the final levee was breached in 2008 in terms of establishing native vegetation and supporting common and rare species of fish, birds, frogs, and benthic invertebrates. Several speakers also addressed larger or watershed-scale issues such as changes in shorebird use in the southern portion of Tomales Bay, use of wetlands as classrooms for students, and seagrass and salt marsh response to climate change impacts. The agenda may be found below.

 
Several kayakers paddling along a vegetation-lined creek.

These talks culminated a day of events specifically developed to help people understand how this very special landscape has changed in the last ten years. That morning, a small group of people joined Jules Evens and Mary Anne Flett on a birding hike: Jules and Mary Anne have worked on the project since the very beginning. The hikers were rewarded with some wildlife drama, as a pair of peregrine falcons swooped down on a flock of greater yellowlegs, with the male snatching one and expertly passing it off mid-air to the female. However, an adult bald eagle had different ideas and started pursuing the female peregrine, who was laboring with her heavy and still struggling prey. Later that morning, eighteen people took to the water to learn about changes in the Giacomini hydrology or patterns in the movement of water from project hydrologist, Greg Kamman of Kamman Hydrology & Engineering. Kayakers were treated to their own wildlife vignette as a deer seemingly walked on water, as it crossed through Lagunitas Creek at a shallow gravel bar area as they were paddling downstream.

If you weren't able to make this very special day and wish to view PDFs of the presentations, please contact Lorraine Parsons by email. We have also prepared short summaries of the Giacomini monitoring information presented at the event and in associated reports.

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Scientific papers that have been published so far.

Kelly, J.P., and T.E. Condeso. 2017. Tidal marsh restoration stimulates the growth of winter shorebird populations in a temperate estuary. Restoration Ecology. 25:640–649. (accessed 14 December 2018)

Parsons, L., L. Sanders, A. Ryan, and M. Reichmuth. 2015. Changes in the Food Web Linked to Restoration Effort Intensity and Watershed Conditions. Natural Resources. 6:344-362. (accessed 14 December 2018)


Thanks

Special thanks to all of those who helped us here at the park to make this great event happen!

  • Sally Bolger
  • Point Reyes National Seashore Association (Donna Faure, Alyssa Tanner, Todd Plummer)
  • Jules Evens and Mary Anne Flett
  • Greg Kamman
  • Blue Waters Kayaking for assistance with the kayaking trip.
  • All of our wonderful speakers!
  • Individuals and organizations that helped to fund the monitoring:

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Multimedia

NBC's OpenRoad Comes to Marin and Giacomini
The Giacomini Wetland Restoration Project was featured in August and September 2018 on the Open Road with Doug McConnell TV show! The episode was all about the tremendous conservation legacy of Marin County, including our beloved wetlands!

 

Anniversary Celebration at the Red Barn from 1:30 to 5:30 pm

Agenda:

Time Topic Presenter(s)
1:30–1:55 pm Welcome
1:55–2:00 pm Overview of Giacomini Long-Term Monitoring Program Lorraine Parsons (NPS)
2:00–2:15 pm From Pasture to Tidal Marsh: Vegetation Community Response to Restoration Cody Ender (PRNSA)
2:30–2:45 pm Changes in Tidal Marsh Fish Communities with Restoration Michael Reichmuth (NPS Inventory & Monitoring Program)
2:45–3:00 pm California Red-Legged Frogs: Build It, and They Will Come Patrick Kleeman (USGS Western Ecological Research Center)
3:00–3:15 pm BREAK
3:15–3:30 pm Avian Responses to Restoration of Tidal Influence and Changing Land–Use Practices: 2008-2018 Jules Evens and Mary Anne Flett (Avocet Research Associates)
3:30–3:45 pm Giacomini Restoration Stimulates Winter Shorebird Populations in Southern Tomales Bay Scott Jennings (Audubon Canyon Ranch)
3:45–4:00 pm Tracing Carbon through Tomales Bay: A Seagrass and Salt Marsh Story Melissa Ward (University of California, Davis)
4:00–4:15 pm Wetland Connections: Engaging Youth in Science to Inspire Future Stewards Leslie Adler-Ivanbrook (PRNSA) and Ben Becker, (NPS)
4:15–5:30 pm Closing remarks and Reception at Red Barn

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Last updated: December 16, 2018

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