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Wetland access made easy

first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORE11 theater productions to see in Southern California this week, Dec. 27-Jan. 2Covering some 560 acres, Piute Ponds are located at the base’s far southwest corner. They were formed beginning in 1961 after Los Angeles County built a dike along Avenue C to prevent treated effluent from its District 14 Wastewater Treatment Plant from flowing onto the Rosamond Dry Lakebed. The ponds have become a stop for birds on the Pacific Flyway, which is a common route for many species of birds as they travel south for the winter or north in the spring. “We have people come from all over the country to watch birds at Piute,” said Mark Hagan, Edwards’ natural resource manager. The newly installed facilities include a welcome sign with a map showing the route of the walking tour, six signs that provide information about the plants, animals and insects that inhabit the area, and a covered observation deck that provides visitors some protection from the elements. Bailey Elementary School teacher Kristie Grubb has been taking second-graders to the ponds for eight years. EDWARDS AIR FORCE BASE – An observation deck and informational signs have been added to benefit visitors at one of Edwards Air Force Base’s most unlikely spots – a man-made wetlands on the edge of a dry lake bed inhabited by migratory waterfowl and other wildlife. More than 200 species of birds have been documented in the waters and among the reeds and grasses of Piute Ponds, which were created by a dike made in 1961 and are kept full by treated effluent released from Lancaster’s sewage treatment plant. “If you haven’t been here before, you’ll be surprised by what you find when you get here,” said Col. Drew Jeter, 95th Air Base Wing commander. “These ponds are man-made, but we are lucky to have them.” Jeter and two elementary school pupils cut the ribbon during a recent ceremony to signify the installation of the observation deck and informational signs placed along the walking path that loops around some of ponds. “The kids love coming here. I love to watch the look on their faces when they see all that water,” Grubb said. People who want to visit the ponds must request access from Edwards’ Environmental Management Office. Call (661) 277-1401 or e-mail [email protected] to receive an access letter.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

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