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Restoration in the Santa Monica Mountains – The World’s Largest Urban National Park
June 21 @ 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area (SMMNRA) is one of the world’s largest urban national parks. Situated in Los Angeles and Ventura Counties, this park unit spans over 150,000 acres. The park falls within one of the world’s 36 biodiversity hotspots, areas known for their high biodiversity and endemism. However, like much of the state, SMMNRA has suffered a long history of anthropogenic impacts. Development from urban sprawl has led to habitat destruction. Human influence has resulted in increased fire frequency and invasion by exotic species. A history of ranching activities has completely converted native landscapes across the mountains to invasive annual grasses and non-native forbs. Currently, approximately half of the park is unprotected, making land management challenging.
In May 2021, the park received a donation from Rewild to plant 100,000 plants in 100 acres at 5 NPS sites in SMMNRA. The park reaches out to the public to accomplish restoration objectives, but also to engage students, low-income and underserved communities, youth groups, and local communities through education and volunteerism. In this presentation, I’ll share with you some of our current restoration projects and our plans moving forward as we build upon restoration from the past and link multiple important vegetation communities across a fragmented landscape.