Ormond Beach, A Classic

On October 2nd I visited Ormond beach with my Biology 433 class, Ecology and the Environment taught by Dr. Alvarado. I have been to Ormond beach a countless amount of times, as I assume a few of us have. However, each time I visit this local habitat I experience it differently. As an ESRM major I have learned about Ormond Beach more than a couple times while attending CSUCI. With such a diverse and unique ecosystem practically in our backyard, I can’t help but look at Ormond Beach through an environmental lens, in the context of this assignment and in the context of this beach in general. Ormond Beach is home to beautiful dunes and amazing wetlands that provide habitats for many bird and plants species, including six threatened and endangered species and six species of concern.  Ormond Beach lies between farmland (as most things in Ventura County do) and the Point Mugu Naval Base, and fronts the Ormond Wetlands near Oxnard. The California Coastal Commission is constantly working with the county, city, and the Nature Conservancy protect this habitat in any means necessary, whether it be acquiring property along Ormond Beach to assist in preservation and restoration of wetlands, or education of local communities in an attempt to strengthen our knowledge of the unique habitat right next door. As outlined on the City of Oxnard website, there a multiple regulations at Ormond Beach in an attempt to protect and preserve the habitats and the species that reside there. You are not allowed to bring, walk, ride or release any domesticated animals. In my ESRM 200 class we worked with Professor Cynthia Hartley and the Ventura Audubon Society at Ormond Beach with Snowy Plovers and we would do beach monitoring in which we would monitor nests, as well as patrol for dogs. It is also prohibited to enter or interfere with any protected habitat area as designated by fencing, signage, or other method. Within working with Professor Hartley I learned how to construct and monitor symbolic fencing as well as nest cages to keep eggs away from predation. Prior to that class I would have never imagined something so small being so important merely 15 minutes away from our campus. Like most protected beaches (and beached in general), you cannot (and should not) alter or remove anything from the beach! This beach is a habitat and an ecosystem, and whether you remove or alter a sand dune, plants or vegetation, you are altering an organism’s home. I enjoy Ormond Beach tremendously, and I enjoy learning more about it every day through my fellow students and in various classes.

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