In This Issue (Links)
Friend of the Month
Black Fly Larvae
Share Your Photos
Board of Directors 2015
Kudos Korner
Events of Others

Upcoming Events
For locations, see event calendar

Tue., Jan. 20
10 a.m.-noon
Fruitvale Bridge Park


Wed., Jan. 21
7-9 p.m.
Dimond Branch Library



El Centro Trailhead

Sun., Feb. 22

10 a.m.-noon





Austin Square

Sat., Feb. 7

1-3 p.m.


Beaconsfield Canyon

Sat., Jan. 31, Feb. 28 

9 a.m.-noon


Bridgeview Trail

Sun., Jan. 11, Feb. 8

10 a.m.-noon


Bridgeview Trailhead Native Bee Garden 

Sun., Jan. 18, Feb. 15

10 a.m.-noon


Dimond Park

Sat., Jan. 17, Feb. 21 

9 a.m.-noon


Marj Saunders Park

Mon., Feb. 2

11 a.m.- p.m.


Montclair Railroad Trail

Sat., Jan 17, Feb. 21

9-11 a.m.


Shepherd Canyon Park

 Mon., Jan. 19

9 a.m.-noon

See flyer 


Wood Park

Sat., Jan. 17, Feb. 21  

10 a.m.-noon




Location TBD

 (see event calendar

Fri., Thu., Feb 19

10 a.m.-noon




FOSC Native Plant Nursery

Joaquin Miller Park 


 Sat., Jan. 10 & 24,

Feb. 14 & 28  

1:30-4:30 p.m.


Thu., Feb. 19

12-2 p.m.





Aquatic Insect Monitoring  (email Kathleen for location)

Sun., Feb. 1

9 a.m.-noon


 Bird Monitoring

Sequoia Arena Gate

Joaquin Miller Park

Sat., Jan. 17

8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.



For more information:

Event Calendar 


Michelle Krieg 

Restoration & Nursery Manager

(510) 325-9006


Helen Dickson 

Restoration Intern


Kimra McAfee 

Executive Director

(510) 501-3672


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Photo Credits:

Helen Dickson

Kathleen Harris

Michelle Krieg

Kimra McAfee

Mark Rauzon

Jeff Stephens




Richard Kauffman 

Kimra McAfee





FOSC logo

At FOSC we interface with Oakland city departments in a variety of ways on a number of different projects. We work closely with Oakland's Watershed Program, Environmental Services Division, and Office of Parks and Recreation. Our Adopt A Spot agreements give us easy access to city parcels so we can plant native species and pull invasive ones, but important larger projects--like fencing to protect sensitive habitat, signage, and trail work--take time to plan, fund, and get approval.

When such long-term projects do happen, the accomplishment feels particularly sweet. I am thrilled to share that after 10 years of effort, the pallid manzanitas around the Chabot Space and Science Center are seeing the light of day. Shading trees were limbed or removed to let direct sun fall on the endangered manzanitas. Thanks to the Wildfire Prevention District for allocating funds to reduce the fire hazard (and, in doing so, opening up the canopy above the pallid manzanitas). This project has also had many champions who revel in this news--we truly appreciate their relentless advocacy. FOSC volunteer Ralph Kanz and former Mayor Jean Quan deserve special mention. The project would not have been completed without the expert project management by Darin Ranelletti of the City's Bureau of Planning and Mike Shelton at Chabot. We laud the care taken by The Davey Tree Expert Company and Sheedy Crane & Rigging Company in working so carefully around the pallid manzanitas, and commend Tanner Harris at WRA Environmental Consultants for providing oversight. 


Please come to our annual State of the Creek meeting on January 21 to hear about this and our other long-term efforts. Thanks to our incredible volunteer base and board leadership, 2015 is going to be a watershed year for FOSC.


King Tides Walk along the Waterfront

Tuesday, January 20, 10 a.m.-Noon

Fruitvale Bridge Park

(Fruitvale Ave. & Alameda Ave.)

Join local historian Dennis Evanosky for this walking tour, and learn the history of the waterway along the shoreline where Sausal Creek now flows into the estuary via a culvert. This event takes places during one of the king tides of 2015 and participants are encouraged to bring their cameras and help document what our daily tides may look like in the future as a result of sea level rise. See www.california.kingtides.net for more information on the California King Tides Initiative. Rain will not cancel the walk--it could make the observations even more interesting! For more information, contact Kimra at coordinator@sausalcreek.org or (510) 501-3672.


State of the Creek 2015

Wednesday, January 21, 7 p.m.

Dimond Branch Library 

3565 Fruitvale Ave.

This year's feature presentation will be on the Sausal Creek Erosion Control Restoration Project in Dimond Canyon by Questa Engineering Corporation. Canyon neighbors from El Centro to San Luis avenues are especially encouraged to attend to learn about the project design. Download a flyer.

In the Creek Litter Clean Up 

Sunday, February 22, 10 a.m.-Noon

El Centro Trailhead

Walking along Dimond Canyon Trail, it usually looks relatively free of litter. Yet our November crew hauled out 180 pounds of trash between the El Centro Trailhead and Montclair Golf Course. Join this rewarding quarterly effort! Wear your grubbies and bring your own boots if you have them. Note that this event is not suitable for small children--eight and older only, please. RSVP to coordinator@sausalcreek.org so we can be sure to have enough boots.

Friend of the Month: Betsy Moses 


It's not every day that you meet someone with boundless positive energy, a bright smile, and excitement about native plants. Betsy Moses is one of those people. After moving to the East Bay a little over a year ago, she first discovered the FOSC nursery at our annual native plant sale and open house in October 2013. Betsy decided to try volunteering at the nursery to get to know her neighbors, explore the outdoors, and exercise her green thumb. Over the course of a year she has been involved with the entire nursery propagation cycle--from seed collection and cleaning, to seed sowing, transplanting, pruning, fertilizing, and, finally, planting in the wild. She has had the special opportunity to watch seed that she has collected in the field germinate and grow into large plants that will one day create habitat for native wildlife.


Betsy has also gotten involved in developing the native plant bee garden along Bridgeview Trail, a monthly volunteer program on the third Sunday of the month where volunteers help create habitat for native bees. She's there to learn, ask questions, and get her hands dirty. Program leader Kathleen Harris appreciates Betsy's plant sense and is grateful to have the help of this experienced gardener.


Betsy is a team player, always up to do anything that is needed around the nursery--from washing pots, to cleaning tags, to carefully removing harmful rust from our precious cottonwood trees. She has also taken charge of sprucing up our native plant demonstration garden around the nursery fence, something that has always been a challenge to maintain. She has an eye for detail and a friendly demeanor that is welcoming to all volunteers. Thank you, Betsy, for your continued support and enthusiasm! I look forward to starting another propagation season with you as part of the team.


--Michelle Krieg, FOSC Restoration and Nursery Manager 

Explore the Watershed 
The Black Fly Larva


Third year of the drought and there was not much water in the creek before the recent rains. But even when the water level is low there's still plenty of aquatic insect life making a living as best it can. In the well aerated riffles (places where the creek bounces over rocks to mix oxygen from the air into the water) there are lots of black fly larvae. 


These little guys look wormy, but they are not even remotely related to worms.  They are the larvae of black flies and are:


            Class: Insecta

            Order: Diptera

            Family: Simuliidae


Share Your Photos


Whether wandering on the trails or helping on a workday, the beauty of the watershed often moves folks to take photographs. Here are some of the ways you can share your photos with the rest of us, or see photos from workdays and other FOSC events.


Flickr Sausal Creek Watershed Group

Photos of the landscape, wildlife, and recreational and conservation activities in the Sausal Creek Watershed. The area includes Dimond, Palo Seco, Shepherd, and Beaconsfield canyons.



Share your observations of plants, animals, or fungi in the Sausal Creek Watershed.





Follow us to see our photos!

Board of Directors 2015


FOSC is again fortunate that all of our current board members have rededicated themselves to serving on the board for another year. A round of applause for the wonderfully kindhearted Helen McKinley who has been at the helm as board president for the last two years. A big thank you to Steve Ritchie who will be the board president this new year and to Secretary Richelle Jacobs and Treasurer Rob Leidy for remaining in their leadership roles. We are excited and grateful that Dee Rosario will be our vice president.


Each board member brings a special skill set and perspective to our board. They are dedicated to FOSC's mission and passionate about the watershed. Each of them is truly "good people" and it is an honor and a privilege to work with them. Virtually meet our fabulous board members on our website.


Back row, L-R: Rob Leidy, Paul Frank, Steve Ritchie, Sean Welch, Dee Rosario, Carl Kohnert; Front row, L-R: Harry Schrauth, Richard Kauffman, Mark Rauzon, Helen McKinley, Eleanor Dunn, Richelle Jacobs, Barbara Goldenberg, Michelle Krieg (Restoration and Nursery Manager);Not pictured: Bob Roat
Kudos Korner


We are so delighted that FOSC Board Member Richard Kauffman was honored with a Jefferson Award. Many know of Richard's tireless dedication as Beaconsfield Canyon's site leader. Richard is also a communications wizard, and he keeps our grant applications and this newsletter reading smoothly but with pizazz. He has been serving on FOSC's board for the last eight years--only slightly less time than he has been leading other volunteers at Beaconsfield. Kudos, Richard!


Thank you to Laura Powers, the Peet's Coffee and Tea employee who championed FOSC to her fellow store employees to get FOSC named as the charity for their 2014 Holiday Giving campaign and then shared her enthusiasm for our urban wildlands with Peet's customers to garner donations for FOSC. Thank you to all Peet's Dimond District customers who donated to FOSC and to Peet's Coffee and Tea for matching the first $750 of donations.

Events of Others


The California Native Plant Society (CNPS) 2015 Conservation Conference will be held in San Jose on January 15-17. This inspirational conference only happens every three years, and this one coincides with CNPS' 50th anniversary. Fees apply for conference, workshops, and field trips.


Learn from Lech Naumovich of the Golden Hours Restoration Institute at the Winter Restoration Workshops in Garber Park sponsored by The Garber Park Stewards and the Claremont Canyon Conservancy. Passive Restoration Workshop: Using Available Materials on-Site for Restoration will include monitoring basics and in situ propagation techniques on Saturday, January 24, and Fern ID and Fern Glade Expansion will be on Saturday, February 21, both 9:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. RSVP to garberparkstewards@gmail.com or 510-540-1918.


Broom pullers unite! The Oakland Fire Department is organizing a volunteer broom pull for a heavily laden stretch of Skyline Boulevard where there have been two recent fire incidents. We're looking for all the volunteers we can get. Tools provided. February 21 and 22, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Meet at Skyline Blvd. and Keller Ave. For more information, contact Ken Thames at kenthames@comcast.net or 415-279-6918. 

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Watershed by making a donation today!

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