On an effort to know better the area where I reside, I decided to visit the Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve. This coastal wetland was designated a protected area by the California Department of Fish and Game since it is a haven for threatened and endangered birds. Ironically enough, the reserve is located within the limits of the city of Huntington Beach, a place known for its surfers not its migratory birds (Huntington Beach claims to be the “original” surf city in the United States).
It is hard to believe a place like this, surrounded by heavily transited streets, residential developments and oil extracting machines, exists. At the beginning of the hike, the sound of the city echoed even in the open spaces. Once we started to move more and more into the heart of the reserve, the song of several birds started to fill the air. Quietness followed a brisk walk. We started to worry about the menace look of a humongous predatory bird instead of thinking of the terrible traffic that was plaguing the freeway at that time.
I was able to see birds such as egrets, herons, ducks, sandpipers, seagulls and more. The best time to visit is during spring and fall when migratory birds rest their wings in the many ponds.
This visit got me thinking. How much importance we give to the preservation of places like this? Do we want more places like this in our communities? Are we taking full advantage of what place like this offer? Are natural areas still necessary in a world where we want to be entertained with “more exciting” options?
I leave those questions to your consideration. Enjoy photo Friday!
Is there a reserve you visit close to home? Let me know in the comments section below.