Category Archives: Elfin Forest

Free Talk: Amphibians and Reptiles of San Diego County, at the Elfin Forest Interpretive Center

Free Talk: Amphibians and Reptiles of San Diego County, Thursday, April 18th from 5:30 to 7 p.m. at the Elfin Forest Interpretive Center

With its varied topography of coast, mountains, and desert, the San Diego region, considered one of the world’s biodiversity hotspots, boasts a rich variety of amphibians and reptiles – from the arboreal salamander to the green sea turtle to the secretive San Diego banded gecko and the red diamond rattlesnake, many of which are endangered species.

Jeff Lemm, an herpetologist from the San Diego Zoo Institute for Conservation Research, will talk on identification, habitats, biology, and the conservation status of all 85 amphibian and reptile species found in the San Diego region as well as snakebite safety and conservation.

Pre-registration required by calling Ann Hough at (760) 471 9354 or sending an email to information@escondidocreek.org. The event is free, donations to The Escondido Creek Conservancy welcome.

http://sanelijolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/04/Flyer_for_Amphibians__Reptiles_Lecture.pdf

Investors Grant The Escondido Creek Conservancy a One Year Reprieve to Save Skyline east of San Elijo Hills from Development

At the eleventh hour, The Escondido Creek Conservancy (TECC) has secured an agreement with a group of investors who have stepped in to purchase and hold the property known as University Heights from ING bank and provide TECC with a one year option, giving the Conservancy time to secure permanent protection for this land for the benefit and enjoyment of all County residents, now and into the future.

The land, dubbed University Heights on development plans, due to it’s proximity to the California State University of San Marcos, and also known locally as “Sleeping Lady Ridge”, because the silhouette of the land resembles a sleeping woman – consists of 502 acres south of San Marcos and west of Escondido. It takes in the summit, southern slopes and a secluded valley below Mt Whitney, a prominent local high point. This pristine landscape supports the many plants and animals of the chaparral, sage scrub and oak woodland habitats. Located between the trail systems of San Marcos and those of the Elfin Forest Recreational Reserve and County of San Diego Parks and Recreation lands, Sleeping Lady Ridge represents a tremendous opportunity for connected outdoor recreation for hikers, bikers and equestrians – without the need for long travel distances. At least two development schemes have been proposed for the land, with up to 1000 new homes suggested, the most recent ending in foreclosure – opening the door for TECC to preserve this valuable
resource permanently.

“We are not out of the woods yet,” said Steve Barker, TECC’s Member-at-Large. “This is a great step forward and over the next 12 months, TECC will be working with Federal, State and County agencies to try and secure the funds to preserve the property permanently. I really want to thank everyone who has made a donation to this project. Thanks to their generosity it has been possible to cover the cost of putting the property into escrow. TECC will need to spend a further $100,000.00 in option payments to the investor group during 2013, so we are counting on the continued support of the community to save this beautiful natural space which provides such important refuge for wildlife. While the new owners have given TECC a year to secure the funding for a conservation purchase, if funds cannot be raised, they will sell it on the private market.”

If you would like to make a donation to the University Heights project, become a member of the Conservancy or for more information visit www.escondidocreek.org. Checks can be sent to TECC, P.O.Box 460791, Escondido, CA 92046.

About The Escondido Creek Conservancy
TECC is a local land conservancy which is dedicated to the preservation, enhancement and protection of the natural open space within the Escondido creek watershed. Since 1991 TECC has preserved over 2000 acres of open space through direct purchase or by working in partnership with its members,donors, landowners, government agencies and community groups.

Check It Out: Elfin Forest Reserve- San Diego Union Tribune

Cliffs in Elfin Forest, San Diego County.

Image via Wikipedia

BY AMANDA STROUSE

San Diego Union Tribune

THE PLACE: Elfin Forest Recreational Reserve

With a beautiful drive as therapeutic as the scenic hikes, it’s not difficult to figure out why people visit the Elfin Forest Recreational Reserve. This 784-acre open-space reserve opened in 1991. It offers about 11 miles of hiking trails and six designated picnic areas and viewpoints, which include drinking water and bathrooms.

Thirteen trails with varying lengths, steepness and vegetation can be found, some of which feature scenic overlooks of the reserve, Olivenhain Dam and Reservoir, Escondido Creek, Lake Hodges, Channel Islands, Coronado Islands, the Laguna and San Bernardino mountain ranges or Pacific Ocean. Trails can be used for hiking, biking, horseback riding or walking dogs. The reserve offers free guided tours that range from fast-paced hikes to slow interpretive walks. A new addition to the reserve is the Elfin Forest Interpretive Center Honoring Susan J. Varty, which is next to the main parking lot. The Interpretive Center is free to walk through and is open 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Fridays through Sundays. Designed by local artist James Hubbell, the small building opened in 2009 and is made of recycled materials. READ MORE VIA San Diego Union Tribune

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