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Garcia River Estuary Tidal Marsh and Riparian Wetlands Plant Walk
July 22 @ 10:00 am - 2:00 pm
Join local ecologist/botanist Peter Baye for an exploration and discussion of the Garcia River Estuary’s wetland complex, including tidal marshes and their gradients into riparian woodland, and floodplain freshwater marsh.
Hike Location: The diverse tidally influenced reaches of the lower Garcia River connect beach, dune, coastal bluff, freshwater marsh, riparian woodland wetlands, submerged aquatic vegetation beds, and brackish tidal marsh. This wetland complex is distinctive among other Mendocino Coast estuaries in many aspects, including vegetation. It is undergoing rapid change from droughts, floods, erosion, sea level rise, and habitat enhancement features constructed for coho salmon. Regionally uncommon to rare plants that occur here include Humboldt Bay owl’s-clover (Castilleja ambigua subsp. humboldtiensis), Lyngbye’s sedge (Carex lyngbyei) and seacoast or shining angelica (Angelica lucida), among more widespread brackish marsh and freshwater wetland plants – but dynamic populations and hydrology here change distribution and abundance each year, so we never know what will be found where we can access from foot trails. With luck, we may discover more mare’s-tail (Hippuris vulgaris), which is known only from the marshes north of the estuary. Boots or sandals and walking sticks are recommended for reaching interesting areas that may require crossing shallow water or mud, but most of the ground to reach is firm. The walk is scheduled for a low but rising tide in the morning.
Contact: Field trip coordinator Rhiannon at rkbotanist*at*gmail.com
RSVP Here If the weather is too wet or cold for us to not have fun, the hike will be cancelled.