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California State Coastal Conservancy to receive $584k for wetland restoration in SLO County

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Posted at 2:50 PM, Mar 05, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-05 17:50:48-05

The California State Coastal Conservancy will receive more than $500,000 from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to restore coastal wetlands in the Black Lake Ecological Area near Nipomo.

According to a news release from Fish and Wildlife Services, the agency will award $584,909 to the Coastal Conservancy.

In total, Fish and Wildlife Services said it has awarded more than $27 million toward protection or restoration efforts across nearly 28,000 acres of coastal wetlands in the nation.

Fish and wildlife biologist, Becky Miller, said the project in San Luis Obispo County will enhance marsh and wetland habitat and coastal dune scrub habitat for native animals and plants.

"We're excited that this project also includes work to restore and enhance a freshwater pond which will help improve subsurface groundwater recharge and provides a more diverse wetland habitat for years to come," said Miller.

The agency said coastal wetland restoration is critical to ensure habitat, wildlife and coastal communities thrive for future generations.

The work at Blake Lake Ecological Area will support federally protected species, including the Nipomo Mesa lupine, La Graciosa thistle, California red-legged frog and the monarch butterfly, according to the press release.

Wildlife officials said storms, sea-level rise, human activity and invasive species have changed coastal areas throughout recent history.

State, local and tribal governments, private landowners, conservation groups and other partners will contribute more than $22.2 million in additional funds to these restoration efforts, said Fish and Wildlife officials.