MAY  |  JUNE 2014   


In This Issue (Links)
Sudden Oak Death Bioblitz
High School Summer Internship Program
Nature Observations
Kudos Korner
Pallid Manzanita Update
Goodbye Jaclyn
CNPS Educational Grants
Reminders: Youth T-Shirt Design Contest and Member Survey
Wilson's Warbler

Dragonflies: Their Lives, Loves, and How to Care for Them
Wed., May. 21
7-9 p.m.
Dimond Branch Library


Orinda Training

Sat., May 10

10-10:45 a.m.

Orinda Public Library


Berkeley Training

Sat., May 10

1-1:45 p.m.

159 Mulford Hall, UC Berkeley





Botany Walk

Fri., May 23

10 a.m-noon

Skyline Gate Staging Area 





Creek Clean Up Walk

Sun., May 18

10 a.m.-noon

El Centro Trailhead, Dimond Canyon






Beaconsfield Canyon

Sat., May 31, June 28

9 a.m.-noon


Bridgeview Trail Ivy Removal 

Sun., May 11, June 8

10 a.m.-noon


Bridgeview Trailhead Native Bee Garden

Sun., May 18, June 15

10 a.m.-noon


Marj Saunders Park

Mon., June 2

11 a.m.-1 p.m.


Montclair Railroad Trail

Sat., May 17, June 21 

9-11 a.m. 


Shepherd Canyon

Sat., May 10, June 14

9-11 a.m.


Wood Park

Sat., May 17, June 21

10 a.m.-noon






 Fri., May 23

1:30 p.m.-4:30 p.m.


Sat., May 10 & 24, June 14 & 28

1:30-4:30 p.m.






Fri., June 13 & 27

10 a.m-noon


Sat., June 14

10 a.m.-noon






Aquatic Insect Monitoring

Sun., June 1

9 a.m.-noon


Wed., June 11
7-9 p.m.
Park Blvd. Presbyterian Church







For more information:

FOSC Calendar 


Michelle Krieg 

Restoration & Nursery Manager



Jaclyn Lim 




 Kimra McAfee 

Executive Director



Like us on Facebook









Photo Credits:

 Dave Biggs

Cody Dorrell

Michelle Krieg

John Rakestraw




Jaclyn Lim




Kimra McAfee

Sarah Nathe













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Since the Earth is about 4.5 billion years old, there have obviously been many unofficial Earth Days, but on April 26, 2014, we officially celebrated the 44th World Earth Day and the 17th for the Friends of Sausal Creek. Our annual event was joined by Mayor Jean Quan and Councilmember Libby Schaaf, and more than 200 volunteers who picked up trash, wrestled with ivy and ripped out blackberry, and gingerly weeded around and mulched new plantings. A few intrepid souls even donned Tyvex to protect themselves from poison oak while preparing a Dimond Canyon gully for our Urban Streams Restoration Program erosion control project. Check out the Earth Day workday photos here, and read on for opportunities to explore and learn about our wondrous corner of the planet. Thanks to you, we celebrated in joyful community a day in the park, in the canyons, and along the estuary.

In the Creek Litter Clean Up

Sunday, May 18, 10 a.m.-Noon

El Centro Trailhead (View map)

The golf ball yield was down to 20 pounds at our February clean up, but stalwart volunteers still hauled out 400 pounds of garbage from Dimond Canyon. Please lend your muscles to the next clean up. Wear your grubbies and bring your own boots if you have them. Note that this event is not suitable for small children--12 and older only, please. RSVP to 

[email protected] so we can provide enough boots.

Dragonflies: Their Lives, Loves, and How to Care for Them 

Wednesday, May 21, 7-9 p.m.
Dimond Library, 3565 Fruitvale Ave.

Dragonfly expert Kathy Biggs will mesmerize you with stories about these colorful insects and their fascinating lives. Learn how you can support their life cycle by creating habitat for them. Kathy is the author of the authoritative pocket guides for common dragonflies of California and the Southwest. This meeting will open with a brief presentation from the Joaquin Miller Elementary Ocean Guardians on their work at Beaconsfield Canyon this school year. Download a flyer.

Help Track Sudden Oak Death! 

Your help is needed to track Sudden Oak Death (SOD), the pathogen that is decimating our beautiful coast live oaks. Well timed action can slow the spread and save specific trees, as well as the many birds and other wild creatures that depend on them.


On Saturday, May 10, attend a 45-minute training at 10 a.m. at the Orinda Public Library (sign up) or at 1 p.m. on the UC Berkeley campus (sign up). On your own schedule Saturday or Sunday, look for infected bay tree leaves. Return samples by Monday morning. You can survey in your own back yard, take a leisurely walk or drive, or enjoy a vigorous hike. Please email Kimra if you plan to collect samples in the Sausal Creek Watershed so we can coordinate routes.


The annual SOD bioblitz is organized by UC Berkeley's Dr. Matteo Garbelotto. For times of trainings in other parts of the Bay Area, visit his website. For general information on SOD, go to

High School Summer Internship Program


If you love the outdoors and want to learn to help your local environment, please apply for our 2014 Summer High School Internship Program. This year's program will take place on Wednesdays and Fridays, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., from July 2 through August 1. See details here. Applications are due June 10.

Nature Observations in the Sausal Creek Watershed

Spring has always been my favorite time of year. The days are longer and warmer, bees and butterflies start to emerge, bird song fills the air, and the landscape is painted with flowers in bloom.


This year, spring around the Sausal Creek Watershed has been exceptionally wondrous. With seven different habitat types to explore--grassland, riparian, oak woodland, chaparral, redwood forests, coastal scrub, and wetland--something new is waiting to be discovered each and every day.


Read on for my favorite plant sightings from this past month.

What Are You Observing in the Sausal Creek Watershed?

We'd love to know! Share your sightings with others and learn more about the natural world in your backyard through our new "Nature Observations" webpage at > Resources > Nature Observations. Everything is shared through, a citizen science endeavor to build a living record of life on Earth.

Kudos Korner

Our gratitude to Brotzeit Lokal Boathaus & Biergarten for selecting FOSC as their organization of choice to benefit from their business relationship with Ethix Merchant Services. Opened in 2013 at 1000 Embarcadero, Brotzeit Lokal owners Krista and Tony Granieri and Chef Lev Delany use Ethix to process their credit card transactions. Ethix donates 25% of the gross monthly revenue from Brotzeit Lokal to FOSC. To date, FOSC has received $234. If you know of merchants who accept credit card payment, please tell them about Ethix and the good work of FOSC. And please make sure to toast Krista, Tony, and Lev when you check out Brotzeit Lokal.


A huge thank you to La Farine-Dimond, Noah's Bagels on Lakeshore, and Peet's Coffee and Tea-Dimond for providing refreshments for Dimond Canyon Earth Day volunteers. 

Pallid Manzanita Update

Since 1998, FOSC volunteers have worked to enhance the habitat for the pallid manzanita (Arctostaphylos pallida) through brush clearing, monitoring, and advocacy. Found only in Alameda County, this large shrub, with its bell-shaped pinkish white flowers, is listed by the state as endangered and by the federal government as threatened. The sun-loving plant, of which there are approximately 50 in the Sausal Creek Watershed, has been shaded out by fast-growing, invasive trees. The City of Oakland and Chabot Space and Science Center (CSSC) have recently applied for a permit to remove some of the shade trees, as outlined in the Habitat Enhancement and Conservation Plan. Removing select trees will allow more sunlight to reach the pallid manzanitas, thereby increasing their chance of survival. We look forward to working with CSSC to preserve and enhance the colony of manzanitas. For more information on the tree removal project, see
Goodbye Jaclyn

A heartfelt goodbye and thank you to Jaclyn Lim, our FOSC intern extraordinaire for the past eight months. Originally from Oakland, Jaclyn volunteered with FOSC in high school, and was inspired to pursue a career in environmental conservation. She graduated from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo in 2013 with a BS in Forestry and Natural Resources, concentrating in Hydrology and Watershed Management. Upon returning to Oakland, Jaclyn wanted to give back to her community, and began interning for FOSC and the Student Conservation Association.

Since September, Jaclyn has been a critical support to the FOSC family--helping facilitate our two largest restoration events on Creek to Bay Day and Earth Day, assisting with numerous outdoor education programs and habitat restoration workdays, and supporting plant propagation at the nursery. She was also instrumental in writing restoration site plans for Barry Place, the Joaquin Miller Court trail head, and Bridgeview Trail.

Thank you, Jaclyn, for your enthusiasm and dedication. We wish you all the best in your future endeavors.
CNPS Educational Grants

The California Native Plant Society (CNPS) has several ongoing educational grants for students of native plants. Check out so that you can apply for funding for your project or scholarship before the September 30 deadline. If you have a project specific to the Sausal Creek Watershed, please contact Michelle so that we can support you in your application.
Reminders: Youth T-Shirt Design Contest and Member Survey

Designs for the new FOSC youth membership T-shirt are due on May 15. Submit your T-shirt design via email to [email protected] or mail it to PO Box 2737, Oakland, CA 94602. Entrants must not be over 18 years of age, please. Designs must be one color and measure 8" x 8". They can be hand-drawn or computer-generated.


If you haven't filled out the member survey, it's not too late! Please take ten minutes to help FOSC strategically focus our organization's efforts over the next year and beyond. Thank you to all who have already responded!

Explore the Watershed


Common Name: Wilson's warbler

Scientific Name: Wilsonia pusilla


The Wilson's warbler can be easily identified by its bright yellow underparts and black cap. A neotropical migrant, it is only found in the watershed during the summer months. As you walk along the creek, listen for it singing its heart out amongst the vegetation.

For more information about birding in the Sausal Creek Watershed, enjoy this recent article from the
Golden Gate Birder.

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