This area becomes a carpet of green sprouts after the seasonal rains. They are often restored native plants adapted to the less alkali soils. They provide nesting habitat for ducks, pheasants, meadowlarks, burrowing owls, bitterns, and northern harriers. In the winter and spring, annual grasses provide food for geese, coots, and wigeon. They also support significant numbers of insects, rodents, and reptiles which in turn are important forage items for raptors and birds. Many of the non-native grasses are invasive and pose a threat to alkali meadow vegetation. Specific habitats within the uplands and grasslands include vernal pools and alkali meadows. In early spring, vernal pools teem with aquatic creatures. Goldfields, downingia, and popcorn flowers bloom brilliantly after these pools evaporate in late spring. Other plants include: saltgrass, saltbush, and annual grasses.