Projects and Research

To help plants and wildlife, refuge staff uses a variety of habitat management techniques to maintain, recover or enhance plant and wildlife values. Refuge staff carefully considers any management techniques and employ them in varying degrees according to the situation. 

Sensitive areas such as bird nesting areas, are closed to the public so that the land can support and recover threatened and endangered species. The San Diego Bay NWR is a special place that provides a safe haven from the surrounding urban development, and the nesting birds depend on this land for breeding, feeding, and resting. Migrating birds rest at this important stop along the Pacific Flyway. Restoration projects are carefully designed to mimic nature to allow target habitat types to develop passively.  

Wildlife and habitat management programs focus on the recovery of the endangered California least tern, endangered light-footed Ridgway's rail, threatened western snowy plover, and the endangered salt marsh salt marsh
Salt marshes are found in tidal areas near the coast, where freshwater mixes with saltwater.

Learn more about salt marsh
bird's beak plant.

Least tern and snowy plover recovery actions include nest site preparation, predator control, and monitoring at the D Street fill within the Sweetwater Marsh Unit, and Salt Works within the South San Diego Bay Unit. Light-footed Ridgway's rail recovery actions include salt marsh restoration, population monitoring, and a captive breeding program conducted in partnership with the Living Coast Discovery Center, SeaWorld San Diego, San Diego Zoo's Safari Park, and others.

Public involvement and input are important to us and to the planning process, and we hope you will take an active interest in the process, individually and as a community. 

Click the following links to learn more about:

Salt Pond Restoration

Otay River Restoration

Sweetwater Marsh Restoration

Mosquito Management

SoCal Urban Wildlife Refuge Project

Learn how by working together with program partners we are helping city-dwelling communities re-connect with nature and building stewards for the environment.