The Egret Corner
June 2022 | Issue 24
A Mudflat Tiger Beetle (Cicindela trifasciata ssp. sigmoidea) in the Ballona Creek Estuary. Tiger Beetles are known for their aggressive predatory habits and fast running speeds. Tiger beetles run so fast, that they can't see where they're going. Blinded by speed, they use their antennae to navigate during runs (Wikipedia, ScienceDaily).
Photo: Jonathan Coffin
Dear Ballona Wetlands Advocates,

Thanks for joining us in the Egret Corner. This month we feature a new nature video about common plants on the reserve, drag queen, and environmental activist Pattie Gonia, a warbler with an icon black cap for our bird of the month, and share some local news.

If you know of a class or group that would be interested in any of our educational opportunities, please feel free to contact sofia@ballona.org or fill out this form.

Enjoy the rest of the newsletter. For previous issues, please visit our newsletter archive. If you have any questions or concerns email lisa@ballona.org. Lastly, your feedback would be greatly appreciated, by completing our newsletter survey.

Thank you for your ongoing support.

Sincerely,

The Ballona Wetlands Land Trust Team
Culver City Seniors Visit Area A!
On June 24th, Sofia and Walter guided visitors from the Culver City Senior Center through Area A. This trail is more accessible than the trail in Area B and is packed with nature. One of the highlights was native Alkali Heath attracting numerous moths, butterflies, and spiders, and native Laurel Sumac attracting many species of bees and wasps. Ask us for a guided tour! Photo: Courtney Lamb
Local News and Events
News: Young Barn Owl Wows Visitors!
Participants in the June 12 nature walk in Area B of the Ballona Wetlands Ecological Reserve (Los Angeles Audubon Society) were treated to great views of this young Barn Owl in the same Canary Island Fan Palm in which it was likely born less than two months prior! We were particularly thrilled by this sighting as our advocacy efforts prevented these trees from being cut down - at least for now. Good policy matters to wildlife. Photo: Sandra Blair
News: Brush Fire Burns Over Three Acres in Ballona Wetlands
"A brush fire burned over three acres of the Ballona Wetlands over the weekend. 

According to the Los Angeles Fire Department (LAFD), the incident was reported on June 18 at 6:10 p.m. in the area of 13600 Culver Boulevard in Playa del Rey.

No injuries or structure damage were reported."

Check Out Common Plants of the Ballona Wetlands Ecological Reserve (Area B)!
Join us on a walk to learn about some plants you can see in Area B of the Ballona Wetlands Ecological Reserve, south of Culver Blvd.
Diversity in the Field: Pattie Gonia
In this segment, we aim to support diversity by showcasing people currently underrepresented in environmental fields, working to improve the environment and/or people's access to natural spaces. We hope to provide representation for people who might not see themselves in these fields and inspire ways to be more inclusive.
In celebration of Pride Month, we'd love to highlight Pattie Gonia(they/she/he)! Drag queen, intersectional environmentalist, and queer activist. Wyn Wiley, the person transforming into Pattie is known for they're big red hair and repurposing plastic waste to create extraordinary outfits.

Pattie Gonia is the world's first backpacking queen and inspires all to immerse themselves outside, especially those whose bodies may traditionally have been excluded from outdoor spaces.

Check out Pattie's Vogue interview to learn more about their story and how they've been using their platform to advocate for environmental and social justice issues.


Bird of the Month: Wilson's Warbler

Interesting Facts
"This bright yellow warbler with a black cap is one of the smallest warblers in the U.S. and among the most recognizable. They rarely slow down, dashing between shrubs, grabbing insects from one leaf after another, and popping up on low perches to sing."
Habitat: North America to Central America in various forest or shrub habitats

Diet: insects and occasionally drinking a sweet liquid excreted by scale insects for quick calories

Nesting: most nest on the ground but those that live in coastal California build their nests as high as 5 feet above the ground in shrubs
*Birds featured here have been seen at the Ballona Reserve or in the surrounding area.
Facts from allaboutbirds.org
Photo: Jonathan Coffin
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The Ballona Wetlands Land Trust is a non-profit community organization
dedicated to advocating for the greater Ballona Wetlands ecosystem and to facilitating access to this ecosystem for education, stewardship, and public outreach.