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East Bay Regional Park District

Oakland, CA

https://www.ebparks.org/

Stewardship Habitat Restoration Program

Desired Skills/Traits:

  • Academic background: botany, plant ecology and/or habitat restoration and/or rangeland ecology.

  • Primary skills:

    • Plant identification

    • Non-native plant control

    • Ecological monitoring

  • Secondary skills:

    • Rangeland management

    • Fire ecology

    • wildlife management

  • Desired training includes heath and safety.

Openings: 1 of 1

EBRPD, New-Trail-in-the-Works.jpg

Climate Mitigation & Adaptation, Ecological Forestry, Education & Outreach, Regenerative Agriculture, Volunteer Engagement, Watershed Management

project breakdown

Research

15%

Planning

25%

Implementation

50%

Education & Outreach

10%

Goals & Needs

The EBRPD is the largest urban park system in the United States; 125,000 acres of Park District lands span from the cooler edge of the SF Bay to the drier inlands to the west of the Altamont Pass and Bay Delta. Our mission is to provide recreation and to conserve the rich natural and cultural resources of these lands. These resources are threatened due to competition from nonnative plants and wildlife, from extreme weather events, loss of habitat function and biodiversity from years of extractive uses, and increases in park visitors. To conserve natural and cultural resources across such a large landscape and with these threats, the Park District is focusing on increasing habitat restoration and enhancement efforts, as well as increasing partnerships with local communities surrounding the 74 parks. Our lands are as diverse as the communities who use the parks, and the best way forward with augmenting the stewardship of our parks is to increase equitable engagement of these diverse communities and to increase the pace and scale of habitat restoration.

 

The GrizzlyCorps Fellow will be a critical part of:

  • Building and supporting the existing habitat restoration program managed through the EBRPD stewardship department. The habitat restoration program focuses on “light touch” restoration that doesn’t require any or very limited engineering.

  • Implementing, managing and monitoring high priority restoration projects for listed species and for uncommon and high value habitats including highly native grasslands, riparian and wetland habitats, oak habitats and rare and endangered habitats including the pallid manzanita;

  • Liaising with the Park District volunteer program and Park Operations to guide volunteers in carrying out restoration of these habitats;

  • Guiding equitable work that will also benefit and involve underserved communities located along the bay and delta edges where climate change, pollution and lack of green space are most acutely felt;

  • Monitoring and maintaining restoration sites;

  • Working with the Park District conservation grazing program to use grazing to support restoration and enhancement of habitats;

  • Support a nascent partnership with tribes to integrate tribal needs of culturally significant plants into restoration plans for future collection by the tribes;

  • Guide planting of fire safe vegetation in fuels treatment areas where non native trees and other vegetation has been removed;

  • Advocating for and educating Park staff and the public on the value of conservation and enhancement and restoration of habitats

  • This work directly supports all three focus areas for GrizzlyCorps of regenerative agriculture (planned grazing), Pathways towards resiliency (all subjects listed), and fire and forest resiliency (ecological forestry, fire adapted communities, indigenous land stewardship).

Capacity Building Projects

Capacity building projects are discrete tasks under the Habitat Restoration Program (HRP); all activities are guided by EBRPD staff on EBRPD lands. All initiatives support conserving biodiversity and increasing resilience of habitats.

Initiative 1: HRP - identify and develop restoration plans.

Work with HRP prioritization framework to identify locations for installation or maintenance of restoration projects and assist in developing restoration plans. This work will increase capacity to implement the HRP and increase the pace and scale of this work. The fellow will attend workgroup meetings with cross-department staff. The fellow will support the development of approx. 5 restoration plans. The fellow will liaison with Park District Operations, Fire Department and grazing staff to develop plans and management strategies for restoration sites. Outcomes include a list of 5 projects to implement along with basic restoration and management plans for each site.

Initiative 2: HRP - Implement habitat restoration projects: Implement approximately 5 restoration projects during the tenure of the Fellow.

Projects and plans selected through ‘Initiative 1’ would be installed and/or maintained. Implementation will require coordination with various divisions and departments of the EBRPD. Outcomes include plants in the ground and a management plan in place for the sites.

 

Initiative 3: HRP - Liaison with EBRPD Volunteer Servies and cultural services to build volunteer and or tribal participation/collaboration in restoration sites.

Fellow will work with the EBRPD Volunteer Program to connect volunteers with restoration to increase capacity to complete projects and build relationships for co-stewardship by tribes. Outcomes include recruiting recurring volunteers to support the success of the projects, tribal partnerships in one or more of the restoration sites, and development of a stronger HRP volunteer program centered on responsible restoration.

 

Initiative 4: HRP - Manage and monitor restoration sites.

Habitat restoration sites are all expected to require maintenance, and monitoring is needed to inform adaptive management and to educate staff on lessons learned. The Fellow will visit sites throughout their tenure, liaison with staff as needed to identify management needs for success if the sites. The Fellow will also implement basic monitoring to track the vegetation and erosion, if any at the sites. Outcomes will be successful sites and monitoring data and interpretation.

 

Initiative 5: HRP - Outreach and Education.

Present to EBRPD staff, sister agencies and others on Fellow's activities and outcomes. The EBRPD is part of a large group of entities and individuals who are conducting habitat restoration. The Fellow will present at up to two gatherings about work performed, outcomes, and lessons learned to help spread the impact of the work outside of EBRPD boundaries.

Organizational & Community Highlights

The EBRPD is in a unique position to make a large impact on the protection of biodiversity and quality of life for our communities due to being in a biodiversity hotspot, being large in acreage and being surrounded by the dense population of the Bay Area. Our staff are dedicated and passionate about stewarding park lands, and we recognize that we can make a big difference in conservation through the work that we do. The stewardship department of 24 is no exception to this dedication, and the Fellow will have the opportunity to work alongside and learn from these passionate folks who have strong backgrounds and do work in wildlife biology, grazing management, grassland ecology, fuels management, water quality, environmental permitting, habitat restoration and pest management.

 

The Fellow will also get to learn from other divisions, including rangers, gardeners, fire ecologists, planners, and many others during the course of the placement. The Fellow will get to be one of only a few who get to have parklands as their office, and to have an opportunity to make a big contribution to protecting and stewarding open spaces. The Park District has grown quickly in staff and acreage since its inception, and as such we have the opportunity to shape the focus and activities of the Park District, rather than being a fixed rigid government agency. Creativity and initiative are valued. EBRPD lands are varied, and on each visit to a park, the Fellow will learn about unique habitats, challenges, land use history, ecology, and partnerships for managing the lands. Outside of park district lands are even more places to explore; the District is within an hour driving distance of the coast, the city of San Francisco, miles of hiking around Mount Diablo, and many other destinations.

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