Pied-billed Grebe by Brian Bradford

May 2023

Dear Friend,

After a busy Earth Month with extra volunteer group events, educating more visitors, and just overall a fast-paced time, we use May to recharge, rest, and reflect. We're taking a tip out of the ol' nature handbook like this resting Pied-billed Grebe.

Some people might think slowing down and resting is lazy, but the natural world all around us teaches that sustainability, success, and progress comes with both action and inaction. From the patient egret motionless at the water's edge waiting for the fish to come closer, to the dormant plants conserving their energy until Spring to burst forth with new flowers and leaves. We are more productive and successful when we are well rested, so let's take this time to slow down and take care of ourselves, for our bodies and our minds.

If you like our e-newsletters please consider sharing it with your friends and family. You can also follow us on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter to catch our weekly "Wildlife Wednesdays" and current events as we share with you what we see and find every week!

collage of volunteers during Earth Month 2023

Thank you for making Earth Month successful!

Thank you to all the volunteers, visitors, new members, and donors for making this Earth Month great! From our Community Hike with Sweet Elle Cafe to habitat restoration volunteer groups like Panasonic Avionics and more, we thank you for letting us share our passion of Bolsa Chica with all of you.

April tends to be the most obvious month to give back to the Earth, but here at the Land Trust, we encourage groups, companies, schools, clubs, churches, even our fellow non-profits to partner with us year-round at Bolsa Chica. Being an environmental steward doesn't have to be just on Earth Day or even just during Earth Month. Each season there are new things to do, to learn, and to experience, even for the regular visitor. We like to say each time you visit Bolsa Chica it's a new adventure and you never know what you'll see.

Come partner with us because we make it an easy, fun, and rewarding experience. It's really a win-win for your group and Bolsa Chica. Afterall, it took a community to save it and it takes a community to restore and protect it. Don't you want to be a part of that?

Partner with Us

Bolsa Chica Nesting Season 2023

How can you help make it a great one?

Spring is a big deal at Bolsa Chica! The native wildflowers are in bloom, visitors from far and wide walk the trails, and tens of thousands of shorebirds travel thousands of miles to nest within the Reserve’s protected boundaries. A number of these birds are what we call ‘listed species’, those that are listed as Endangered, Threatened, or Species of Special Concern either by the State of California or the Federal Government. The Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve is home to 23 such species during the year, of the more than 900 species of animals and plants that call Bolsa Chica ‘home’.

As a state Ecological Reserve, Bolsa Chica’s primary focus is the care and wellbeing of these listed species. However, urban pressures continuously strain and damage the nesting sites for these birds. Pollution, predation, and trespass within the Reserve, are three main threats to the critical habitats of these small birds. 

Continue Reading to Learn How You Can Help the Birds

Bolsa Chica Fairy Shrimp!-- New blog post

A substantial rainstorm poured down on Bolsa Chica in the third weekend of January 2023. A few days after the storm past rare vernal pools were spotted on the mesa by Bequi (Bolsa Chica Steward) and UCI Fellow Nicholas. Read the new blog post 'Bolsa Chica Fairy Shrimp' to hear their personal stories about this spectacular observation and watch a short video clip at the end.

Read about Bolsa Chica Fairy Shrimp

New Bolsa Chica Coaster Set

For your donation of $25 you may choose a set of Bolsa Chica coasters to adorn your table or desk. Made of light tan soapstone, one highlights a wonderful kingfisher photo, and the other, a photo of a popular portion of the trail. These coasters have a cork back to protect your furniture from condensation and scratches. Our two-coaster set is perfect for gifting. Have a glimmer of Bolsa Chica on your table anytime!

Cool Coasters Here


stewards watering

BCLT Stewards Habitat Restoration Volunteering



Sunday May 7th, 9am-12

Saturday May 20th, 9am-12

Pre-registration and sign up on our website is required. Capped at 40 volunteers for each event.

Email Beverley at Beverley@BCLandTrust.org for more details

Miracles of the Marsh Docent Volunteering


Contact the office for more information

Beverley@BCLandTrust.org or 714-846-1001

tour on footbridge

BCLT Outreach and Free Public Tour



Sunday May 14th, 10am-12 Mother's Day

Sunday May 21st, 10am- 12

Contact the office for more information

Kim@BCLandTrust.org or 714-846-1001

Beach Clean Ups

(Over until November)


When: Every Monday at 8:30am from November to March


Where: 20th Street entrance to Huntington City Beach


Who: Everyone! Most of the supplies are provided, but if you want, please bring a reusable bucket or bag, and gloves.  


How: Please email Jeff at Jeff@BCLandTrust.org to volunteer.  


*If you have a group that you want to bring, please email Kim@BCLandTrust.org and we can work to accommodate your group.*

Great Blue Herons by Kurt Bayless

May Bird of the Month: Great Blue Heron

High up in the century-old palms of the Bolsa Chica Gun Club site, visitors can observe the activities of the nesting colony of Great Blue Herons between February through June. These large birds claim their nests early and refurbish them with select sticks. Incubation of the eggs takes about 28 days. After the chicks hatch, both parents share in hunting and feeding duties. Chicks remain in their nest about 2 months and fledge by June. Great Blue Herons fish in the marsh and hunt small animals on the mesa.

46” long; 72” wingspan; 5.3 lbs

photo: Kurt Bayless

Reminders When You Visit Bolsa Chica

Here are some things to remember during your visit:

  • Please stay on the trails. Not only could you disturb nesting birds, but snakes are often not far off the trails.
  • Enjoy the flowers, but please do not pick them.
  • Do not feed the animals.
  • Do not litter. Please pack out your trash, including food scraps.
  • No bikes.
  • No dogs.
  • No drones.
  • Enjoy being with nature!
  • If you see any BCLT Stewards working along the trail, say hi! We are happy to answer any questions.

Support Bolsa Chica Today!

The mission of the Bolsa Chica Land Trust is the acquisition, preservation, and restoration of all of Bolsa Chica and the education of the public to its natural wonders and cultural significance.

Visit our website at BCLandTrust.org

Questions? Email us at Info@BCLandTrust.org or call (714) 846-1001

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Photo Credits:

banner- Brian Bradford, volunteers- Bequi Howarth, Jeff Rokos, Jay Yoo, fairy shrimp- Nicholas Hucko, coasters, E. Chin, Stewards- James Huang, Miracles docent with kids- Bequi Howarth, Bridge tour, Elegant Terns on beach- Marinka Horack, Great Blue Herons-Kurt Bayless, snowy bridge- Eric Benson