By Antonieta Valenzuela
To celebrate World Migratory Bird Day, this Monday, May 10, 2021, for the fourth consecutive year we installed the temporary fence on the beach in front of Pacifica at Ensenada Bay to protect the snowy plover. This fence will remain installed until August, which is when the breeding season ends.
We did a live stream that you can watch here https://fb.watch/5pbX5LB4KS/
The snowy plover is the protagonist species of the campaign “The beach belongs to everyone” which we promote in collaboration with Pacifica at Ensenada Bay. It started in 2018 in order to improve the conservation conditions of this species, since it’s a threatened bird whose populations have rapidly decreased in recent years.
The snowy plover is a migratory shorebird and Ensenada is an essential site for this species, between April and August they use the sandy beach to lay their nests, so they are vulnerable to the passage of people and vehicles, as well as unleashed dogs.
Some of the actions that the population can take to help protect the snowy plover are:
- Respect the fence and signs.
- No littering.
- Avoid walking with vehicles.
- Walk pets on a leash, as birds lose energy when chased by dogs, and they need that energy to protect their nests.
So far, and thanks to the efforts of the campaign, between 2019 and 2020 more than 150 snowy plovers have been born and the protection fences implemented have made it possible to protect an area of approximately 40,000 square meters.
In recent years, citizen science events and community cleanups have also been carried out, with which more than a ton of garbage has been removed from the beaches. In addition, ZOFEMAT has closed clandestine entrances to the beach, this benefits species such as the snowy plover because transit in nesting areas is prevented.
It’s important to mention that the fence was installed with the support of the organizations that are part of the Ensenada Urban Birds Program, which are Pro Esteros A.C., Contacto Salvaje A.C., Los Correcaminos Club, and Investigación Aplicada a Socioecosistemas A.C.
In addition, the campaign has been made possible thanks to the support of Pacifica at Ensenada Bay, Manomet, WHSRN, Coastal Solutions Fellows Program, California Department of Fish and Wildlife, ZOFEMAT, and Tracy Aviary.