The restoration projects along Cache Creek and within the Nature Preserve are the main focus of the work done at the Cache Creek Conservancy.
Project Manager, Lea Bertz has spent a bit of her time reshaping the islands in the Cache Creek Nature Preserve's (CCNP) wetlands. These changes establish more emergent wetland vegetation, create 1.3 acres of flooded wetland forest habitat, and enhance 91 acres of wetland-associated upland and riparian habitat. These improvements will provide a greater quantity of higher quality habitat for wetland-dependent species, specifically tri-colored blackbirds, wood ducks, and western pond turtles.
Other environmental benefits of this project include increasing resilience against non-native, invasive plants by establishing native vegetation and physically removing niches that invasive, non-native species have occupied. Target wildlife species will have more habitat for foraging and nesting and the public will have better recreational and educational opportunities at the CCNP.
By enhancing and establishing habitat for wildlife with the most stringent habitat needs, many species of wetland associated and dependent species benefit. With tricolored blackbirds and wood ducks as focal species, this project will provide much-needed habitat for several species found at the CCNP.
The CCNP is a central piece of the Yolo County’s proposed Cache Creek Parkway Plan, which recommends a contiguous band of riparian habitat and recreational opportunities along lower Cache Creek. This and other projects will serve as a reference for creating and enhancing reclaimed wetland habitat from former gravel mines in the proposed parkway and beyond.