Los Cielos Restoration
Helping our native species thrive
The 905-acre Los Cielos Preserve has grown by over 100 acres since it was first established in 2010. Not only are we working to connect more open spaces to this Preserve, we have also been actively working to restore disturbed areas along the creek. Much of this land is covered with invasive plants including Pampas Grass, Arundo, mustard, and ice plant. The dense stands of Arundo have proven most challenging to remove, although crews from Habitat West have nearly finished the process on Escondido Creek. The Arundo is especially damaging to our riparian habitats because of the amount of water it needs to survive and its ability to outcompete local species. Next, they’ll head to Meisha canyon to control Pampas grass and ice plant.
Los Cielos Preserve is at the heart of the “gnatcatcher core” of the North County Multiple Species Conservation planning area and the rare Encinitas Baccharis species has also been observed here. An EMP grant from SANDAG has allowed us continue this restoration process in hopes that we can stop these invasive species from encroaching on our vulnerable species. While we’re just about finished removing the Arundo in this area, the overall restoration of Los Cielos will continue over the next several years.