I can’t get over the photo (see here) of the subsoil on the Conservancy’s Betts tract. I’d heard for 20 or more years about the “hardpan” that existed under much of the Natomas Basin’s top soil. Until you see it, it’s difficult to imagine. Once you do see it, like in this photo, you can really see what is meant by hardpan. This impacts the ability to grow crops (deep rooted crops, no; but for rice it is perfect). It also determines the ability to sustain a good managed marsh for the Conservancy’s giant garter snake and Western pond turtle. Like they say in the farming community: it holds water like a bath tub!
We are so pleased to see one of the NBHCP’s “Covered Species,” the Burrowing owl (Athene cunicularia), back on Conservancy property! Going back 15 years, the owl used to be seen frequently on Conservancy mitigation lands. At the time, we documented too-common depredation of them by dogs from nearby residential… Continue Reading They’re back!