MAJOR HABITATS OF GRIFFITH PARK: Southern Mixed Chaparral Dominated by evergreen shrubs, most of which are found only in California (Ceanothus, Toyon, Chamise, Mtn.- Mahogany). Fire-dependent High species diversity Aquired taste
MAJOR HABITATS OF GRIFFITH PARK: Oak Woodland Shady groves in canyons and terraces along streams. Dominated by 1 species (Coast Live Oak) Fire-tolerant Wildlife magnet People magnet
MAJOR HABITATS OF GRIFFITH PARK: Sycamore Woodland Towering trees (Western Sycamore) along streams and former stream courses. Largely converted to picnic areas within park. Fire-damaged Wildlife magnet (esp. birds) People magnet
MAJOR HABITATS OF GRIFFITH PARK: Coastal Sage Scrub Low-growing scrubland on loose, eroding soils; dominated by species found only in California. Fire-maintained, but destroyed by frequent fire. High plant, animal diversity (esp. reptiles and butterflies).
MAJOR HABITATS OF GRIFFITH PARK: Rock Outcrops Unique gardens of lichens and succulents. Largely inaccessible (with a few exceptions). Poorly-studied.
CHARACTERISTIC SPECIES OF GRIFFITH PARK: Reptiles/Amphibians All widespread terrestrial Santa Monica Mtns. species present and common. One (?) aquatic species (Pacific Treefrog) Still need to determine status of: - Side-blotched Lizard - Western Toad - Arboreal Salamander - Coast Horned Lizard - Rare snakes Striped Racer, Western Whiptail Pacific Treefrog,
CHARACTERISTIC SPECIES OF GRIFFITH PARK: Mammals All widespread large and mid-sized mammals of Santa Monica Mtns. species resident (except Mountain Lion) Populations likely inflated by feeding, dumping, and landscaping. Still need to determine status of most/all small mammals (e.g. mice, shrews) Bobcat, Gray Fox, Raccoon
CHARACTERISTIC SPECIES OF GRIFFITH PARK: Birds Most bird species of Santa Monica Mtns. present in proper habitat. # of riparian birds along canyons depressed; likely due to degraded habitat. Limited infiltration of urban birds into park interior (= a good thing!) Purple Finch, Rufous-crowned Sparrow, Western Bluebird
CHARACTERISTIC SPECIES OF GRIFFITH PARK Plants Eastern extension of Santa Monica Mtns. Locally-rare species scattered; along streams, on rock outcrops, within dry scrub, etc. Native flora historically viewed as problem, fixed through planting exotics. Research ongoing (R. Fisher, City of L.A.) Humboldt Lily Brush/Spring Cyn. c. 20 plants in park (Clockwise, from upper left): Leptodactylon californicum, Clarkia bottae, Dudleya lanceolata, Keckiella cordifolia
SENSITIVE SPECIES OF GRIFFITH PARK WILDLIFE (per DFG) Ashy Rufous-crowned Sparrow - Arid slopes and roadcuts, esp. buckwheat. 20+ pairs in park. Yellow Warbler - 5+ pairs nest in willows along L.A. River channel. California Legless-Lizard - recorded vic. L.A. Zoo in sandy soil; #s? Coastal Western Whiptail - Arid scrub; 100s in park. Coast Horned Lizard - Historical only? PLANTS (per CNPS) Calandrinia breweri - historical records from Vermont Cyn. ( pictured ) Lilium humboldtii - Fern, Brush Cyns. Berberis nevinii - probably derived from planted individuals And, possibly 18 others known from eastern Sta. Monica Mtns.
The Fire of 2007 - assessing the effects Most/all habitat types affected No unique habitat affected 800+ acres transformed (not lost) Wake-up call
THREATS TO WILDLIFE AND HABITATS Identify: problem spots problem forces Popular trailheads Interior picnic areas Exotic/Invasive species Off-leash dogs
THANKS! Los Angeles and San Gabriel Rivers Watershed Council Los Angeles Dept. of Recreation and Parks City of Los Angeles Franklin Hills Residents Association Greater Griffith Park Neighborhood Council Paul Mathewson, Stephanie Spehar, Martin Byhower (fieldwork)