Ellwood Trails Reopen, Enter at Your Own Risk

Ellwood Trails Reopen, Enter at Your Own Risk title=
Ellwood Trails Reopen, Enter at Your Own Risk
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Ellwood (Photo: Robert Bernstein)

Source: City of Goleta

The City of Goleta is pleased to announce the reopening of trails on Ellwood Mesa in consultation with the California Coastal Commission.  Users are encouraged to use caution on trails and should be aware that many of the trees are drought-stressed and in danger of falling.  Users enter at their own risk.

As previously noticed, the City of Goleta has completed a Draft Initial Study/Mitigated Negative Declaration (IS/MND) for the Ellwood Mesa/Sperling Preserve Monarch Butterfly Habitat Management Plan (MBHMP). The City invites comments on the environmental analysis described in the Draft IS/MND. The public comment period began on January 25, 2019, and will end on February 24, 2019 at 5:00 p.m. The Draft MBHMP and IS/MND are available for public review on the City's website at the link below or at the City of Goleta Planning and Environmental Review Department, 130 Cremona Drive, Suite B, Goleta, California, or at the Goleta Public Library on and after January 25, 2019.  The documents can be found here: https://www.cityofgoleta.org/home/showdocument?id=21579, https://www.cityofgoleta.org/city-hall/planning-and-environmental-review/monarch-butterfly-inventory-and-habitat-management-plan

City staff is also working with Coastal Conservancy staff for agreement on the disbursement of the $3.9 million allocated in the 2017-19 State budget for restoration of the Ellwood eucalyptus groves.  The City Council is expected to take action the Monarch Butterfly Habitat Management Plan and environmental document at a Council meeting later this spring.

For more information, please visit the City’s project pages on the Ellwood Mesa https://www.cityofgoleta.org/projects-programs/ellwood-mesa-habitat-project and the Monarch Habitat Management Plan https://www.cityofgoleta.org/city-hall/planning-and-environmental-review/advance-planning-division/environmental-programs/monarch-butterfly-inventory-and-habitat-management-plan.”

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Eggs Ackley Feb 15, 2019 10:19 AM
Ellwood Trails Reopen, Enter at Your Own Risk

Is there any connection between increased human visitation to over-wintering sites and proportionate decline in monarch populations?
How have our diverse annual weather patterns affected monarch migration and aggregation?

yin yang Feb 15, 2019 09:44 PM
Ellwood Trails Reopen, Enter at Your Own Risk

Say Bye Bye. Welcome to more humans. "With 86% Drop, California’s Monarch Butterfly Population Hits Record Low" ////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////https://www.nytimes.com/2019/01/09/science/monarch-butterfly-california.html

"This year, though, the monarchs’ flight seems more perilous than ever. The Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation, a nonprofit group that conducts a yearly census of the western monarch, said the population reached historic lows in 2018, an estimated 86 percent decline from the previous year. That in itself would be troubling news. But, combined with a 97 percent decline in the total population since the 1980s, this year’s count is “potentially catastrophic,” according to the biologist Emma Pelton."

a-1550301093 Feb 15, 2019 11:11 PM
Ellwood Trails Reopen, Enter at Your Own Risk

Aside from pesticides eradicating milkweed, one of the biggest threats to Monarch butterflies' health and population growth is the loss of overwintering butterfly habitat. The Mexican Oyamel Fir tree forests have been devastated by humans: "The monarch overwintering sites are found on only 12 isolated mountaintops (see sanctuary map) in Mexico's Transverse Neovolcanic Belt (also called the "Transvolcanic Belt").
The oyamel forest ecosystem is Mexico's most endangered forest-type. Only 2% of the original forest remains."

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