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Parts of Vandenberg beaches to close for snowy plover nesting season

Posted at 5:29 PM, Feb 27, 2019
and last updated 2019-02-28 01:52:40-05

Vandenberg Air Force Base is closing parts of Surf, Wall and Minuteman beaches to protect the Western Snowy Plover bird and its nesting habitat.

Under the Endangered Species Act, the 30th Space Wing Commander is required to enforce restrictions on all three of the beaches annually from March 1 through September 30.

During this time, dogs, horses and kites are prohibited and beachgoers are barred from entering the closed sections of the beaches.

Violators can be fined up to $5,000. People caught crushing eggs or chicks can face fines up to $50,000 and jail time.

If violations exceed 50 for Surf Beach and 10 for Wall and Minuteman beaches, the beaches could be closed entirely for the rest of the nesting season.

Vandenberg urges beachgoers to read and follow the rules posted on signs at the beach to avoid any violations.