Tidal Influence LLC is searching for enthusiastic, environmentally-minded individuals who want to learn and contribute toward Long Beach conservation efforts. Check out the TI Experience page for the full announcement. Applications are due September 22nd.
This summer, every weekend, every Saturday and Sunday, each afternoon, come enjoy the nature of the Colorado Lagoon. From 1-5pm, Tidal Influence staff are at the Lagoon helping excited beach-goers understand that they are swimming in one of the most paid-attentioned-to wetlands in Southern California. This Lagoon is undergoing one of the most unprecedented restorations and the animals are responding to this activity. Tidal Influence is trying to share this with the thousands who enjoy it as a beach and a much-needed place to cool off during the hot summer days. Visit Alene, Matt, James and Cristina as they teach the kids about the fish and crabs and the adults about the water quality and biodiversity.
True restoration and conservation work requires educated and fiercely dedicated teams of people to have success in protecting these critical habitats in the long term
As a student you learn to see and analyze the world in one frame of view, learning concepts, theories, ideals and equations. Applying this knowledge in the real world doesn't always go according to plan and most of the time there are situations that occur that you never even learned about! Having an internship in your field bridges the gap between "school science" and "real world science."
Six of the Tidal Influence interns just finished their time learning and participating at the Los Cerritos Wetlands and Colorado Lagoon. Here are their thoughts on their time spent with us!
The most important thing that I learned from this internship was that environmental restoration is basically a huge experiment in terms of success. We don't always have the best answers or solutions to the problems at hand and it makes science seem less precise than I previously perceived! This internship has definitely added diversity to my work experience. I did tasks that I did not know were part for restoration work such as assisting with small group management, providing nursery care, learning about irrigation and sprinkler systems and helping do minor repairs.
My favorite flora was the Cholla cactus (Cylindropuntia fulgida), because it was a challenge to plant and it always presented an element of danger during events! My favorite fauna is the Snowy Egret (Egretta thula). I really enjoy watching them hunt and I like they're wispy plumage.
The best advise that I can give to future interns is to not procrastinate on journals! Not because your being graded or anything, but because keeping a detailed journal allows you to look back and appreciate your time as an intern. Hardest part is dealing with the weather and some volunteers but as long as you invest yourself in the program, you'll walk away with great memories and experiences!
The most important thing that I learned from this internship was the flora and fauna of the wetland, as well as the anatomy of the local ecosystem. My advice to the new interns, is to love what you do, and take the most out of the experience. As long as you go home with something new, the time and experience will not go to waste.
My favorite flora is the Beach Evening Primrose (Camissoniopsis cheiranthifolia). Both the name and the flower it’s self is attractive. For the fauna, it has to be the Mourning Dove. The calling sound they make is very unique and owl-like, and I can easily distinguish them anywhere.
The most important thing that I learned from this internship was how to restore a wetland. Obviously, that entails much more than just 1 thing, but I learned so much from this experience. It gave me an idea of the blueprint of knowledge and understanding for everything that has to go into the planning and restoring from start to finish of bringing back a natural habitat. It has also taught me that networking is huge, public outreach and education is a must, researching all the species (whether they be native or non-native), and then all the politics and business side are incredibly important too! This internship was 100% valuable in building up my skill set and experience for future jobs. I think my focus in marine biology will be wetland restoration and the few places I have had the chance at applying to volunteer for all have similar protocol. All the applications ask for previous knowledge/skills, and I am now able to put so much down for those categories all from what I have learned with Tidal Influence! I really never imagined I would have all the knowledge I do know about this field and am so happy and thankful to have had the opportunity to learn and do so much.
My advice to future interns would be to put as much time and energy as you can into the internship. It's hard with school and work, but I was always happy to be outside planting or pulling weeds then stuck at school studying. It was a nice time to relax and escape from school and the more you put into it the more knowledge you'll retain with you and the more familiar you'll become with all the species. The hardest part for me was just juggling my crazy schedule around and wishing I had been able to have more availability to have more flex hours. I think the most rewarding part was seeing all the outcome of all the hard work we had put in. I also really valued the work I got to do with Julie and Jeff because those were outside experiences I would have never got to have! I also really enjoyed everything I did at all the events (even when pulling weeds in desert weather), so even though I was super busy this semester I was a lot happier vs. when I worked at jobs that were stressful and a bad environment.
My favorite fauna was the Ana's hummingbird (Calypte anna) because all the information I learned about them was fascinating (how people in the New World thought of them, Native American stories about them, their habits and character), plus I was super excited to be able to identify the different hummingbirds we have. But also a tie with the Pacific green sea turtle (Chelonia mydas) because as a marine bio major I love learning about threatened species and to find out so much about a group that practically lives down the street from me was awesome! My favorite flora would have to have been 4 winged saltbush (Atriplex canescens) because I found it interesting that a lot of our plants had "cousins" that were non-native species and comparing them. The 4 winged saltbush was native species and my favorite fact about it was that it needed to be under constant water threat or else it wouldn't survive, it also excretes all of the salt it takes from the soil and pushes it out of its leaves.
I think the most important thing that I got out of this internship was the real world application of my studies to this real world restoration situation. I absolutely, without a doubt, believe that this internship was valuable in building my skill set for future jobs. I now have experience in the field; doing hard physical work, learning plant and animal species names, working with the public, team work, and problem solving. The biggest thing is that all of these skills will help me get closer to my future goals working in the field I love. My advice for future interns would be something that Jeff said when we were just starting. He said to get as much out of it as you can. Be as involved as you can and go to as many things as you can. I wish I had more time to devote to this internship, but I was thankful to partake in some other opportunities such as the fish seines that were offered. The hardest part about the internship was probably just in the beginning because it can be intimidating and learning the procedure of how the program runs but once you get the hang of it and start learning plant and animals names it becomes easier and a whole lot of fun! The most valuable part would be talking to the staff and learning everything and anything you can from them, asking them tons of questions and getting advice from them.
My favorite flora is a tie between Black Mustard (Brassica nigra) and Mexican Fan Palm (Washingtonia robusta) because of the history element of both plants. The black mustard was spread along the padres trail to mark it (little did they know what they were doing) and the mexican palm fan became a symbol of southern California through ornamental gardening craze in the early twentieth century sometimes only planting them 40-50 feet apart. Fascinating! My favorite fauna was the California Least Tern (Sternula antillarum browni) because it is an endangered species so it was interesting to learn about ways their threats and ways they are trying to manage them. For instance, by using military lands and abandoned air bases as nesting sites, or how LA port tried to create a nesting site through imported sand and predator traps!
It is difficult to select the single most important thing I learned through this internship. I would guess that because I valued so many things I learned, important knowledge gained has to be the overall ah-ha moment that protecting wetlands system like Los Cerritos Wetlands requires far more than a few volunteer plantings and trash pickups. True restoration and conservation work requires educated and fiercely dedicated teams of people to have success in protecting these critical habitats in the long term. I understand now that it can take a lifetime of work to see the restoration of a few acres of wetlands and it requires constant attention, research and support networks to sustain. Over the course of the internship I learned the most important thing without really noticing, though it may take a lifetime of work to restore and protect any wetland acreage, it is worth it. I now understand the worth of a life dedicated to protecting and advocating for the wetlands. I never thought I would feel as strongly as I do now about the importance of the wetlands. The internship is invaluable in skill building for future positions. It involves using an array of extremely important professional skills which include but are not limited to; independent research, professional speaking, professional writing, public outreach, leadership, field surveying and identification techniques, coordinating volunteer groups; species-specific plant care. Leadership at Tidal Influence provides any support interns need if requested regarding help finding jobs after their internship and are always willing to provide meaningful and honest advice and references for the job search.
This internship was invaluable in skill building for future positions. It involves using an array of extremely important professional skills which include but are not limited to; independent research, professional speaking, professional writing, public outreach, leadership, field surveying and identification techniques, coordinating volunteer groups; species-specific plant care. Leadership at Tidal Influence provides any support interns need if requested regarding help finding jobs after their internship and are always willing to provide meaningful and honest advice and references for the job search.
My favorite flora is Heliotrope (Heliotropium curassavicum) and my favorite fauna is California two-spot octopus (Octopus bimaculoides).
The Los Cerritos Wetlands has had its fair share of volunteers, but on April 26th a new record was set. Old and young, 163 volunteers from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints spent four hours removing debris and brush. This group removed approximately 100 cubic yards of debris and filled up two large dumpster containers! The before and after photos really show the significance of removing that much!
Each volunteer came with smiling faces and an amazing attitude to get some work done! Everyone was very curious to understand the importance of pulling up weeds and removing palm fronds. The truth is that these tasks truly are helping the wetlands, by removing invasive species such as ice plant or mustard, we not only give space for native plant species but give the opportunity for native fauna to arrive as well.
This was a very large event to set up for and took a team of awesome individuals to prepare the site. Typical events run from a couple of volunteers to up to 50, and usually get a significant task completed. This event blew typical events out of the water! Having that many individuals out helping made the work easier and they completed SOOO much more!
A big thank you goes out to all of the volunteers from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and the Los Cerritos Wetlands Authority.
Please Check out more photos from this event on our flickr site!
Two weeks ago there was a massive influx of Moon Jellies, Aurelia labiata, at the Colorado Lagoon! You can still see some of them if you walk across the bridge and look closely!
Moon Jellies are common along the California coast they feed on plankton in quite bays and harbors. They are circular, bell shaped, and translucent with short fine fringe (cilia). They swim horizontally, keeping the bell near the surface. The Moon Jellies sweep up their food with the cilia and store it in pouches until it gets digested by the oral arms. The color of the jelly often changes based on its diet. Although they Moon Jellies sting their prey, the sting poses a small threat to humans.
Scientists have determined that jellies reproduce best when the water has TOO many nutrients and too little oxygen. This unbalanced ecosystem can be common due to the run-off of water from land.
Many organisms depend on the Moon Jellies for food, such as tuna, sunfish, spiny dogfish, all seven species of sea turtles, and birds. Jellies are 90% water, therefore species that are dependent on jellies for food have to eat a lot! Unfortunately, drifting plastic bags look very similar and get mistakenly swallowed. Thousands of birds and turtles die each year from the mistaken
Monterey Bay Aquarium
Welcome to our new TI interns! Hoping we can help you with achieving you future career goals!
Is a Geography major, who would like to explore restoration and human impacts on the natural environment as a future career option. On his free time, James enjoys art, music, reading and learning something new.
Is an Environmental Science and Policy major, who would like to
work at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), become an environmental consultant or a professor as a future career. On his free time, Lanz plays the piano.
Is an Environmental Science and Policy major on the BS track. His
future goals are to learn about species living in the local wetlands environment
and work outside. On his free time, Alec is surfing, hiking or playing PS3.
Is an International Business major, who is very open for future
careers! He is not sure what path he wants to take but is enjoying starting to learn about the environment! On his free time, Michael is hiking, snowboarding, water skiing, or playing guitar.
Kristine de Leon
Is a Microbiology major, who would like to have a career studying
microbial ecology for wetland communities, with an emphasis in doing research.
On her free time, Kristine is hiking, cycling, and taking photos, pretty much
anything that gets her outside.
Is a Marine Biology major, that would like to study octopi and cuttle fish in our local reefs. She would also love to work with wild dolphins and one day she would like to be an astrobiologist for NASA! On her free time, Cristina is surfing, hiking, sewing, painting, listening to music, playing with animals and eating burritos.
Is an Environmental Science and Policy major on the BA track. She
would like to in Coastal Management because the coastal zone is her favorite
habitat. She would like to see how humans interact and impact (positive or
negative) this environment, and what can be done to remediate or restore some of the land. Her research goals are to learn more about research in general and to volunteer with Sea Turtles in Costa Rica. On her free time, Nina is reading, shopping, watching movies, hanging with her friends or cat, or is enjoying some time at the beach.
Is an Environmental Science and Policy major, who hopes to work
on the restoration efforts on the California coast. She wants to get a better
grasp on plant identification and understanding the interdisciplinary aspects of
research projects. On her free time, Alene is surfing, gardening or running.
By: Julie McNamara
On Friday October 25, the final quarterly beach seine was deployed for the Colorado Lagoon’s first year of
environmental monitoring. A beach seine is a method of fishing that uses a net
hung vertical in the water with the bottom edged weighted and the top buoyed by
floats. Seines have been used widely though out history and today scientists use
this method to help identify spatial and temporal changes in fish assemblages.
There are possible causes of observed changes in the assemblages with include
natural phenomena (climate), pollution, habitat degradation and restoration!
The Friday beach seine was deployed in three areas, two outside the
reserve and one with in the reserve. The first seine we caught tons of baby
California Killifish (Fundulus parvipinnis). This species is a coastal fish that occurs in shallow bays, estuaries
and marshes. They can tolerate a wide range of salinities, oxygen levels and pollution.
The second seine was inside the reserve, where we caught over 500 adult and baby
California Killifish! We also caught several Topsmelt (Atherinops affinis), this species is also common in estuaries and can tolerate drastic swings in water salinity! The most exciting surprise of this seine was the Two-spotted Octopus (Octopus
bimaculoides). This was the first octopus ever caught in one of Colorado Lagoon’s beach seines! Two-spotted
Octopus is named for its obvious blue spots located behind its eyes. They can grow up to a two foot arm span and the female can lay up to 150,000 eggs. They female will brood continuously for 2-4 months, she does not feed during this
time and then dies around hatching time. The young remain on the bottom after hatching and have a life span of 2-3 years!
The third beach seine deployed was across the bridge and we found a Striped Kelpfish (Gibbonsia metzi)! This species can be found in tide pools and kelp beds down to a depth of 9 meters.
Fridays beach seines and the previous seines in the Colorado Lagoon have laid the base line survey for future seines to be
By: Julie McNamara
Hidden behind chain link fences and scattered with oil rigs, the last remaining TRUE saltwater wetlands of the Los Cerritos Wetlands Complex continues to be a refuge for many wildlife species. Passed by daily by many residents and tourists, the wetlands are located adjacent to Los Cerritos Channel and Studebaker road.
The daily influx and outflow of the ocean water brings nutrients that are keeping the slough thriving! The tidal influence is the blood of this saltwater marsh, which extends 650 meters.
Steam Shovel Slough is home to many species of shore birds, migratory birds, plants, and marine organisms. It is also home to the California Least Tern and Belding’s Savannah Sparrow, both are endangered species.
Tidal Influence, LLC has just concluded the deployment and survey of Steam Shovel Slough for vegetation, soil, and invertebrate samples. This information will help scientists learn how to preserve saltmarsh wetlands and it serves as a foundation for future research!
Join Tidal Influence, LLC in the fight for the saltwater wetlands! Join us at our restoration events by emailing email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org for information on how you can make an impact!
By Jade Dean
By Jade Dean
If you've had the chance to look at the event calendar for Friends of Colorado Lagoon, you've seen an event called Lagoon Afternoons that has an assortment of dates from October to December. Today, coincidentally, was the first one of the year! Lagoon Afternoons started in 2012 to provide an additional weekday opportunity for members of the community to assist our staff. Volunteers engage in a diverse amount of tasks that include: seed collection, watering, weeding, planting, and so much more.
Our event today was a huge success! We had 35 students from Wilson High School join us to water plants and collect seeds from Giant Wild Rye (Eleymus condensatus), Bladder Pod (Isomeris arborea), Purple Sage (Salvia luecophylla), White Sage (Salvia apiana), Mock Heather (Ericameria ericoides), and California Buckwheat (Eriogonum fasciculatum). In exchange for their service, their teacher, Mr. Wille, awarded them extra credit. Don't worry, this event is not solely for students! We've also hosted businesses, like Wells Fargo, and had general members of the community join us for the afternoon.
Here are the remaining events for 2013: Thursdays from 3-5pm on 10/24, 11/7, 11/21, 12/5, 12/12. If you would like more details, click on the event calendar above, leave us a comment, or email email@example.com.
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