South San Diego Bay Coastal Wetland Restoration Project

Location: San Diego County

Project Type: Restoration

Status: Completed

Habitat Type: tidal wetlands

Date Completed: 2011

Area Affected: 300 acres

Assembly District: 80

Senate District: 40

Congressional District: 53

Project Lead/Grantee:
USFWS San Diego National Wildlife Refuge Complex (G. Mendel Stewart 760-930-0168)

This project restored approximately 300 acres of estuarine habitat in South San Diego Bay including the western salt ponds, the Chula Vista Wildlife Reserve, and Emory Cove. The project included excavation of degraded uplands to create intertidal and subtidal habitats, dredging former salt ponds to create tidal channels, breaching levees to restore tidal influence and associated habitats, and establishment of native plant communities.

More than 90 species of migratory and residential birds are currently benefiting from this project. Federally and state listed species such as California least tern, light-footed clapper rail, western snowy plover, and Belding’s savannah sparrow are now able to forage for invertebrates and fish through new shallow subtidal and intertidal habitats. The expanded fish habitat has created new spawning and feeding grounds strengthening the fisheries resources of San Diego Bay.