From our blogs

Pollinator Week 2024: June 17 - 23, 2024 - BioBlitz at the Refuge

The month of June is National Pollinator Month, and June 17-23, 2024 is Pollinator Week this year.

Pollinator Week 2024 is a celebration of the vital role that pollinators play in our ecosystems, economies, and agriculture. Under the inspiring theme "Vision 2040: Thriving ecosystems, economies, and agriculture," this year's event urges us to envision a future where pollinators not only survive but thrive.

Pollinators visit flowers to drink nectar or feed off of pollen and transport pollen grains as they move from spot to spot. Birds, bats, butterflies, moths, flies, beetles, wasps, small mammals, and most importantly, bees are pollinators.

Pollinators play a crucial role in flowering plant reproduction and in the production of most fruits and vegetables. Without the assistance of pollinators, most plants cannot produce fruits and seeds. The fruits and seeds of flowering plants are an important food source for people and wildlife.

Self-Guided Volunteer BioBlitz at the Refuge

In honor of Pollinator Week 2024, please join us for a self-guided BioBlitz event, a volunteer opportunity that you can do outside on your own or with your family. It's a great way to explore nature and contribute to science. You may participate at any time from Monday, June 17 to Sunday, June 23. The Alviso Unit of the Don Edwards San Francisco Bay National Wildlife Refuge is an excellent location for viewing local wildlife and checking out native plant species. Register here: https://PollinatorWeekBioBlitz2024.eventbrite.com and join the project here: https://www.inaturalist.org/projects/pollinator-week-2024-self-guided-vo...

Pollinator Week 2024. Photo Credit: Sirena Lao / SFBWS

2024 Marsh-in Summer Camp Applications are open! • July 31-August 2, 2024

We are so excited to welcome campers back for another year of Marsh-In Summer Camp at the Don Edwards SF Bay NWR! This is the 45th year of free Summer Camp being offered to Bay Area youth entering Grades 1-6 and will take place at Refuge Headquarters in Fremont at 1 Marshlands Rd, Fremont, CA 94555.

This year's camp will be hosted from Wednesday, July 31 through Friday, August 2, 10:00am - 2:00pm each day at Don Edwards SF Bay National Wildlife Refuge Headquarters in Fremont.

We welcome parents & guardians from all over the Bay Area to apply via this Google Form (one per family): https://forms.gle/nauSBXC44nMrpaYH7. Applications are due on June 21, and Summer Camp acceptances will be sent out by July 1. Campers are chosen through a lottery system.

Requirements: Campers must be entering grade 1-6 in Fall 2024 and attend and participate in all 3 days of camp. All activity materials will be provided. We will provide transportation from Santa Clara County for the in-person camp days. Camp is free to all participants.

We will share fun, self-guided activities with campers that may be completed at home prior to camp. Families will be invited to programs before and after camp!

Please reach out to summercamp@sfbayws.org or call (408) 515-1889 if you have any questions.

⮇ Click here to download the Marsh-In Summer Camp 2024 flyer in English and Spanish (PDF 1.2 MB) ⮇

Interpretive Associate for the Watershed Watchers Program

Come join us! We are hiring an Interpretive Associate to work at the Don Edwards San Francisco Bay National Wildlife Refuge.

  • Part-time, ~18 hours/week
  • Gain experience working in the non-profit sector and work closely with Refuge staff and volunteers.
  • Help with interpretive, education and restoration activities, and engage diverse audiences with nature.
  • Work outside on a National Wildlife Refuge
  • Hybrid working schedule
  • Apply now! First review of applications: May 1, 2024

Position Description

The San Francisco Bay Wildlife Society (SFBWS), a not-for-profit Friends group to the San Francisco Bay National Wildlife Refuge Complex, is looking for an enthusiastic Interpretive Associate to work at the Don Edwards San Francisco Bay National Wildlife Refuge (Refuge) assisting with interpretive programs and environmental education and outreach. The Associate will work under the Watershed Watchers Program Coordinator and in close partnership with US Fish & Wildlife Service staff and volunteers to promote the Watershed Watchers mission, funded by Santa Clara Valley Urban Runoff Pollution Prevention Program (SCVURPPP).

The Spring 2024 Issue of Tide Rising, our quarterly newsletter, is here

by Ceal Craig

Tide Rising: Volume 5, Issue 3, Spring 2024

Tide Rising: Volume 5, Issue 3, Spring 2024.

The San Francisco Bay Wildlife Society is happy to publish the latest issue of its digital newsletter, Tide Rising: Volume 5, Issue 3, Spring 2024. This issue’s theme is Endangered & Threatened Species.

In this issue:

  • SFBWS Perspectives: Endangered Species Day is May 17, 2024 - can we celebrate? Learn about what an endangered species is and how to help them thrive.
  • Endangered and Threatened Species: Protecting Habitats - Mary Deschene of SFBWS writes about key takeaways and highlights from Public Lands Alliance Convention and Trade Show. On 3/27, Deb Haaland, United States Secretary of the Interior, visited the Don Edwards San Francisco Bay National Wildlife Refuge. At USFWS Workshop, Rachel Tertes of DESFBNWR shares her expertise using nature based solutions in managing landscapes. Sirena Lao, new SFBWS Watershed Watchers Program Coordinator, shares her perspective on what she has been learning in her role. Hear about highlights from walks at several refuges and preserves across the Bay - including a chorus of avian voices!
  • Community Voices: Two young environmentalists call for habitat protection. Hear from a young volunteer about ecopsychology. Meet a local high school robotics team recycling old printers into learning experiences that also promote responsible e-waste disposal. Learn about ways to conserve power and materials in an age of tech.
  • News: Join us for Earth Day on the Refuge on April 21! Farallon Islands webcam has been re-launched. Please welcome new members of SFBWS! Upcoming activities on the refuge and in the community: check them out!
  • SFBWS Volunteer Opportunities: Learn about places to support the Complex and the SFBWS: Nature store volunteers, SFBWS Operations support.

Editors: Clayton Ou, Ceal Craig, PhD
Contributors: SFBWS: Ceal Craig, Mary Deschene, Sirena Lao. USFWS: Matthew Brown, Chris Barr, Gerry McChesney. Community Voices: Da Potato Sisters, Riya Marella, Ethan Deng & Daigo Hayashi, Clayton Ou.
Photographers: Mary Bobik, USFWS, Aja Yee, Rachel Tertes, Sirena Lao, Ceal Craig, Geary Chew, Clayton Ou, Neels Kulshrestha, Elizabeth Olachea.

Thanks for reading!

Marsh-In Summer Camp and Program Associate 2024

We are hiring! Want the chance to work outdoors on a National Wildlife Refuge and engage kids with nature? Apply to join our team at the San Francisco Bay Wildlife Society as the Summer Camp Associate!

We are looking for a passionate and tenacious team member to engage with our local youth and inspire the next generation of environmental stewards. Check out the details below to learn more and apply.

* Part-time, May to August 2024
* Gain experience working in the nonprofit sector and work closely with refuge staff and volunteers.
* Engage the next generation of young environmental stewards.
* Work outside on a National Wildlife Refuge
* Hybrid working schedule
* First review of applications: March 18, 2024

Marsh-In Summer Camp Associate 2024

Great Backyard Bird Count • February 16 — 19, 2024

Join people from around the world count wild birds on the February 16 to 19 weekend and then submit your data online for scientists to use in their research. The kid-friendly event is run by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and National Audubon Society, plus other sponsors and international partners.

Whether you’re a sage expert or a first-time birder, you can help create a snapshot of avian populations and provide critical information for future conservation efforts just by reporting what you see and hear. Every observation you submit gives scientists more insight into research areas such as how birds are adapting to suburban sprawl, West Nile Virus, and climate change. It’s free, it’s fun, and it makes a difference.

So how do you take part? Read on at https://www.birdcount.org/participate/ to learn how to participate and then share your photos: https://www.birdcount.org/photos/ of the Great Backyard Bird Count (GBBC) 2024.

Bay Area Older Adults 50+ spring time hikes 2024

Are you an adult 50+ years old living in the Bay Area? Join us and explore Santa Clara County's open spaces and enjoy lakes, mineral springs, migrating birds, wildflowers and more while learning about Silicon Valley's rich culture, history and wildlife.

Registration required at https://www.bayareaolderadults.org/bao-hikes.

Birding along Uvas Creek

Wednesday February 28, 2024 from 9:30 AM to 1:30 PM

Uvas Creek Preserve in Gilroy is a 125-acre city park that has Uvas Creek running its center. Mining operations filled in the creek back in the 1970s and restoration of the creek was completed in 1995. Our expert birder and naturalist will lead us on a leisurely walk along the creek that is home to metallic blue tree swallows, white-tailed kites, California thrashers, pineapple weed and turkey tangle frogfruit. We end the afternoon with a social picnic lunch. This special program is hosted in partnership with Valley Water.

Level of Difficulty: : Easy
Number of Miles: : 2.0
Location: Meeting location is San Jose CA 95120 for van carpoolers or Gilroy 95020 for hike start location.
Additional Benefits: Transportation to and from the preserve and picnic lunch are included. You can borrow binoculars.

Participate in February 2024 King Tides Project in Alviso

Very high tides known as King Tides are coming to shorelines across California Friday, February 9, 2024. King Tides are caused when there is alignment of the gravitational pull between the sun, moon and Earth. They are predictable and happen a few times of year. They are the highest tides of the year, and offer a glimpse into what life along the coast and bay could be like of sea levels continue to rise. They also provide visibility to the trash polluting our water ways and the San Francisco Bay.

The California Coastal Commission’s King Tides Project is asking for people to document the coast for a citizen-science project that aims to give decision-makers a look at how to address sea-level rise in future years.

When: Friday, February 9, 2024 - 11:00am to 12:30pm
Where: Don Edwards SFB NWR EEC, 1751 Grand Blvd San Jose, CA 95002

Sign up today to learn about this year’s King Tide events! The CCC uses the Survey123 app to track community science king tide photos.

We are inviting you as well to participate in this year's King Tides Project in Alviso!

We have a few spots at and around Don Edwards SF Bay National Wildlife Refuge where you can witness the year’s highest tides.

King tides observation points in Alviso, CA

The Winter 2023 Issue of Tide Rising, our quarterly newsletter, is here

by Ceal Craig

Tide Rising: Volume 5, Issue 2, Winter 2023

Tide Rising: Volume 5, Issue 2, Winter 2023.

The San Francisco Bay Wildlife Society is happy to publish the latest issue of its digital newsletter, Tide Rising: Volume 5, Issue 2, Winter 2023. This issue’s theme is Restoration & Reflection.

In this issue:

  • Restoration and Reflection: USFWS seeking input for revamp of Environmental Education Center and surrounding public spaces. VTA seeking input for Beneficial Reuse of Excavated Material in Tidal Marsh Restoration Project during public scoping period. On its 20th anniversary of formation, the South Bay Salt Pond. Restoration Project opened 300-acres more of former industrial salt pond to the Bay, restoring critical tidal marsh habitat.
  • SFBWS Corner: EEC construction for the Shoreline Levee Project, king tides at the EEC and nearby, and more about our National Wildlife Refuges.
  • Wildlife Education: Learn about the dormancy patterns of California native plants and their relationship with the lichens that grow on them.
  • Community Highlights: Hear about a Bay Area native who grew up hunting and is now passing along his knowledge and guidance to junior hunters.

Readers' feedback:
Enjoy the San Francisco Bay Wildlife Society Quarterly Newsletter! Share your ideas for future articles! What interests you? Tell Us! Thanks for reading, and enjoy the rest of the San Francisco Bay Wildlife Society’s Quarterly Newsletter!

Editors: Clayton Ou, Ceal Craig, PhD
Contributors: SFBWS: Ceal Craig, Aja Yee, Madison Cline. USFWS: Melisa Amato, Chris Barr, Gerry McChesney.
Photographers: Ambarish Goswami, USFWS, VTA, Ceal Craig, Miguelina Portorreal, Charles Anderson, Madison Cline, Billy Roark, Sam Darmstadt.

Thanks for reading!

Volunteer positions available

Join a fun group of Refuge Volunteers who share a passion!

Come join us! We need your help.

Nature Store Volunteer, Fremont

* Manage Nature Store sales
* Trained to engage with Refuge visitors and respond to questions.
* Weekend shifts
* Network and learn about the refuge

Please contact mary.deschene@sfbayws.org for more information.

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