Welcome!

The Southern California Research Learning Center (SCRLC) is one of 19 Research Learning Centers across the country. These centers strive to increase scientific activity in the national park system, to communicate research that supports stewardship and to make science part of the visitor experience. 

By working with a variety of partners, we aim to support science-based decision making, increase science literacy and promote a conservation ethic within Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area, Channel Islands National Park and Cabrillo National Monument.

Black-and-white photo of impressive rocky stacks rising up above an expansive coastline.

An Ocean on the Edge

Join Coastal Ecologist Steve Fradkin to learn how West Coast parks are working to understand the changing world between land and sea.

Sunset over two large marine snails on a boulder overlooking tidepools.

Owl Limpet: Keystone of the Intertidal

Meet an aggressively territorial rocky intertidal resident with mouthparts made of the strongest natural material in the animal world.

Two paper sea stars intertwined, one shades of purple and the other shades of orange.

Rock. Paper. Science.

Each of the beautiful works here represents a species found at Cabrillo National Monument that park resource teams are working to protect.

Impressively large Shaw's agave plants in black and white.

Shaw's Agave: A Botanical Gem

Discover how an international team of conservation scientists is racing to better understand and protect this iconic cross-border species.

Marine ecologist counting intertidal organisms as waves crash nearby.

Meet National Park Scientists

Scientists work largely behind the scenes in our national parks. Who are they and what are their jobs like? We interviewed them to find out!

Last updated: August 11, 2021