Print Page

 News.bytesNews.bytes Extra, issue 455 

Volunteers get down in the dirt to help special area

To celebrate National Public Lands Day, the BLM's Palm Springs-South Coast Field Office hosted a volunteer event Saturday, October 23rd at the Dos Palmas Area of Critical Environmental Concern (ACEC).

Dos Palmas ACEC, a roughly 14,000 acre area, contains a variety of environments including wildlife ponds, freshwater marshlands, fan palm oases, native sand dunes, desert sink scrub, and desert wash woodlands. The ACEC provides habitat for a wide variety of plants and animals, including several listed species. (text continues below)

Smiling women show balls formed with dirt and seeds

Volunteers participating in this year’s event helped BLM staff form mixed soil, sand, clay, and native seeds into seed balls for planting within areas of the ACEC which have been cleared of tamarisk (Tamarix ramosissima), an invasive plant species.

In all, twenty-five volunteers consisting of BLM staff, a California Dept. of Fish and Game employee, several students from the College of the Desert, and other local residents rolled up their sleeves to get their hands dirty for the sake of restoration. While most of the participants were local residents, a couple of volunteers made the two-hour drive from the Los Angeles basin to join in the fun!

After the work was done, volunteers enjoyed a short hike -- led by Eddy Konno of California Fish and Game, and Tracy Albrecht, BLM interpretive specialist -- to a nearby oasis to learn more about the flora and fauna of the area.

All told, 25 volunteers put in five hours each, for a total of 125 volunteer hours.

two smiling men work with dirt and seeds in large plastic bins
two young men work with the dirt in a bin
hands delve into a red bucket of dirt
more people working with buckets of dirt, balls of dirt cover much of a table
Dirt balls cover a table among palm trees
generally smiling group stands behind their work at a table
more people at work with dirt, on plastic-covered table and bench
man and women work with the dirt

- Jennifer Taylor, wilderness specialist and volunteer coordinator, BLM Palm Springs-South Coast Field Office, 10/25/10

BLM-California News.bytes, issue 455

Last updated: 11-03-2010