Vernal Pools preserve California's natural landscape

What ecological feature can do all of the following:

  •  purify water,
  •  store floodwater,
  •  offer recreation and education opportunities,
  •  provide a habitat for wildlife (often for endangered species),
  • hold deep cultural and spiritual importance?

Vernal Pools!

Vernal pools are seasonal wetlands found within the grasslands, oak woodlands, and mixed conifer forests of California. These unique ecosystems fill with water during the winter and drastically transform into dried pond bottoms during the summer.
Their unique nature results in biological sanctuaries filled with diverse communities of vegetation, wildlife, and microorganisms. While only a small proportion of California’s landscape, vernal pools play an imperative role in the conservation of natural landscapes.

Learn more about vernal pools in Northern California at

A vernal pool in a bright green meadow. Photo by the BLM.