Malibu Lagoon Ecology

The Natural History of a Geography of Hope
Via a Website

Robert Jan 'Roy' van de Hoek
Biologist - Geographer - Naturalist - Archaeologist
January 1, 2003, Revised 2004
Malibu Lagoon & Golf Course
Seaside Heliotrope

Malibu Lagoon is a very special place. So special, in fact, that my good friends, Lori and John Willis, spent a lot of time walking and observing nature, at Malibu Lagoon. I had the good fortune, together with Lori Willis, to lead many tours for children at Malibu Lagoon as an environmental educator. In honor and with respect and loyalty to Lori Willis, I have conducted additional ecological restoration at Malibu Lagoon. For example, an unnamed island in Malibu Lagoon has had all the invasive saltbushes and trash removed and has been named Lori's Island. Today, this island is covered in pickleplant, saltgrass, and Marsh Jaumea. Countless birds rest on Lori's Island, most notably the Snowy Egret, Double-crested Cormorant, and the California Brown Pelican. The discovery that Wandering Skipper visit Lori's Island is a small miracle too. Another aspect to restoration of Lori's Island has been the placement of hundreds of pounds of beach sand and drift objects (shells, urchin tests, driftwood, and small cobbles). The purpose of this restoration is to attract Snowy Plover and California Least Tern to nest here on this island. It is also hoped to be a resting place for other wetland birds. I have recorded a Belted Kingfisher in February, 2004, on Lori's Island. Also, Black-bellied Plover in a flock of about 20 individuals has used the shore of Lori's Island in February, 2004. Interestingly, the Snowy Egret, Great Egret, Great Blue Heron, and a Black-crowned Night Heron have all been seen visiting Lori's Island now that the invasive bush (saltbush) has been removed. In just a few months of 1-2 hours a week by this expert volunteer restoration ecologist, this beautiful little island in Malibu Lagoon has become a haven and sanctuary for avian wildlife. Restoraton and Recovery of Lori's Island is an ongoing process, but the abundance of bird life now using Lori's Island is astonishing. It is now time to wait and watch and listen for the return of the Least Tern and Snowy Plover to Lori's Island in Malibu Lagoon. Hopefully, they will discover this new habitat for nesting and resting.

Wandering Skipper Butterfly at Malibu Lagoon
Malibu Condors?

Malibu Lagoon & Golf: Another Photo

Malibu Lagoon & Golf: Another View

Heliotrope Wildlings

Heliotrope Wildlings