Location: Pleasanton Middle School 5001 Case Ave, Pleasanton CA 94566
Presenter: David "Doc Quack" Riensche
Do you know we have a “Tern Town” in Ohlone Audubon’s own backyard? Nestled along the eastern shoreline of the San Francisco Bay is a sanctuary for three special status birds, built by the hands of thousands of citizen scientists. After twelve years of success, the Hayward Regional Shoreline supports the second-largest California Least Tern (Sternula antillarum browni) colony north of Ventura County, and it also provides nesting habitat for the Western Snowy Plover (Charadrius alexandrinus nivosus), Black Skimmer (Rynchops niger) and six other waterbird species. Averaging 279.6 California Least Tern nests per hectare, "Tern Town", as it is affectionately known, has one of the highest breeding density on the West Coast. Equally impressive is its concentration of procreating Western Snowy Plovers, ranging from 4.1 to 32 nests per hectare. The presentation will discuss: island construction, substrate enhancement, social attractants, invasive noxious weed control partnerships, implementation and management of a predator control program, reproductive trends of nesting species, diet studies, and kleptoparasitism. Lastly, David “Doc Quack”, our presenter, will also highlight the trials, triumphs and teaching approaches that have communicated science to the public, policy makers and peers, while generating more than 25,000 hours of volunteer help to assist in the recovery of these endangered and threatened birds.
David "Doc Quack" Riensche, a Certified Wildlife Biologist, is a Wildlife Biologist for the East Bay Regional Park District where he has worked for over 29 years. For 20 years he has been a member of the Biology Department faculty at Las Positas College, where he teaches courses in biology, ecology, and vertebrate natural history. He is a recipient of The National Association for Interpretation (Region 9) - Outstanding Field Naturalist Award. David holds advanced degrees in both Natural Resource Management and Environmental Education, and an undergraduate degree in Biology (Wildlife). His current research and habitat restoration efforts are diverse, focusing on the following species and groups: California Least Tern, Western Snowy Plover, Black Skimmer, Forster's Tern, Western and Clark's Grebes, Bald Eagle, Ridgway's Rail, California Black Rail, Burrowing Owl, California Red-legged Frog, California Tiger Salamander, Western Pond Turtle, Salt Marsh Harvest Mouse, San Francisco Dusky-footed Woodrat, Central California grassland lizards and small mammals, riparian and oak woodland breeding bird community structure, shorebird nesting population studies, upland gamebirds and waterfowl management.
Directions: From I-680 take the Bernal Avenue exit and head east on Bernal to Case Avenue. Turn right on Case. The school is on the right. Enter the first driveway and park at the south end of the parking lot. Follow signs to meeting room.