Ventura Fish and Wildlife Office
Pacific Southwest Region

Coastal Program - Central California Coast

VFWO Coastal Priority Area
Watsonville, CA - USFWS
Watsonville, CA - USFWS

The Central California Coast is priority area for the Ventura Fish and Wildlife Office. We wish to support priority coastal conservation efforts along these 450 miles of coastline which span roughly from the Malibu lagoon in the south to Santa Cruz County north of Monterey Bay [map]. Within this region, priority coastal resources of interest to VFWO include the Northern Channel Islands, coastal terraces and bluffs, beaches, large dune complexes, numerous estuaries, coastal watersheds, and near shore islands.

Many central California communities depend on these coastal resources for recreation, tourism, commercial fishing, and agriculture. The Ventura Fish and Wildlife Office through its Conservation Partnerships Program is focusing its efforts to collaborate with communities of the central coast to conserve these coastal ecosystems for the benefit of fish, wildlife, and the people who depend on them.

Estuary at Morro Bay, USFWS
Estuary at Morro Bay, USFWS

Conservation Objectives for the Central California Coast Priority Area

Monterey Dunes, USFWS
Monterey Dunes, USFWS
  • Restore and protect coastal habitats through collaborative projects; provide technical assistance in the restoration process; and provide cost share where appropriate.
  • Develop regional partnership strategies to restore, enhance and protect coastal habitats.
  • Work with partners to identify high-priority restoration projects using the best available scientific information.
  • Use an ecosystem approach to restoration and enhancement of habitats.
  • Promote natural, self-sustaining populations of native species within their historic ranges.
  • Provide a catalyst for outreach and education to further public awareness of natural resources in coastal areas
  • Provide support for applied research and monitoring efforts that address critical natural resource issues.
  • Assist partners with applying for other U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service funding programs including the National Coastal Wetland Conservation Grants Program, the North American Wetland Conservation Act Program, Private Stewardship Grants and others.

Examples of Conservation Partnerships Projects in the Central California Coast

Sweet Springs, Morro Bay - USFWS
Sweet Springs, Morro Bay - USFWS

The Conservation Partnership Program supports projects on private, public, and Tribal lands. These partnerships are the foundation of the program. Typically partners include private landowners, conservation groups, citizen volunteers, Federal, State, Tribal, and local governments, academic institutions, industries, and businesses.

Project Examples:

  • Control and eradicate exotic and invasive plants.
  • Reestablish native vegetation.
  • Restore hydrology of streams and estuaries including associated wetland and floodplain areas.
  • Improve fish passage.
  • Support applied assessment, research and monitoring efforts focused on filling critical data gaps.
  • Conserve and protect key habitats and landscapes.
  • Support focused education/outreach efforts that provide knowledge and awareness of coastal resources.

For more information about the Central California Coast efforts, contact:

For Coastal Areas in Monterey or Santa Cruz Counties:

Shawn Milar
Northern Counties Coastal Program Coordinator

For Coastal Areas in San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, Ventura, or Northern Los Angeles Counties:

Mary Root
Assistant Field Supervisor, Conservation Partnerships
Ventura Fish and Wildlife Office
805-644-1766 ext. 233

For more information about other USFWS coastal conservation efforts:

Visit our National Coastal Program Homepage

or contact our Regional Coastal Program Coordinator:

Samantha Marcum
Coastal Program Coordinator--Pacific Southwest Region
U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service


Last updated: May 14, 2013