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Watch birds eat flies and shrimp at Saltworks

Birding by Kayak event this Saturday

The ponds of South Bay Saltworks
The ponds of South Bay Saltworks

If you head out of Chula Vista Marina into the open bay and make a left turn to the south, you’ll see a spit of land jutting westward out into the east side of the bay. This marks the southern boundary of the South Bay Saltworks. Beyond that spit of land are shallow ponds graded in staged elevations meant to trap sea water pumped from the ocean. Saltworks involve a simple process: water fills the shallow ponds and when the water evaporates, it leaves the salt, magnesium, and bromide behind in the sediment. The property contains 18 condensing ponds and 14 crystallization ponds.

The ponds are located within the San Diego Bay National Wildlife Refuge and in 2011, two of the ponds at the western edge of the works were restored to marshland. Brine shrimp and brine flies that proliferate in the saline- and algae-loaded waters provide the base food source for baitfish and migratory birds that feed on the tiny crustaceans or fish.

Past Event

Birding by Kayak

  • Saturday, March 5, 2016, 8:30 a.m. to noon
  • Salt Works Trailhead, 1470 Bay Boulevard, Chula Vista
  • $60

The San Diego Audubon Society is hosting a Birding by Kayak tour from the marina on Saturday, March 5. Participants will receive training, tandem kayaks are provided. Species highlights: brant; Pacific loon; pied-billed, eared and western grebes; double-crested cormorant; American white and brown pelicans.

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The ponds of South Bay Saltworks
The ponds of South Bay Saltworks

If you head out of Chula Vista Marina into the open bay and make a left turn to the south, you’ll see a spit of land jutting westward out into the east side of the bay. This marks the southern boundary of the South Bay Saltworks. Beyond that spit of land are shallow ponds graded in staged elevations meant to trap sea water pumped from the ocean. Saltworks involve a simple process: water fills the shallow ponds and when the water evaporates, it leaves the salt, magnesium, and bromide behind in the sediment. The property contains 18 condensing ponds and 14 crystallization ponds.

The ponds are located within the San Diego Bay National Wildlife Refuge and in 2011, two of the ponds at the western edge of the works were restored to marshland. Brine shrimp and brine flies that proliferate in the saline- and algae-loaded waters provide the base food source for baitfish and migratory birds that feed on the tiny crustaceans or fish.

Past Event

Birding by Kayak

  • Saturday, March 5, 2016, 8:30 a.m. to noon
  • Salt Works Trailhead, 1470 Bay Boulevard, Chula Vista
  • $60

The San Diego Audubon Society is hosting a Birding by Kayak tour from the marina on Saturday, March 5. Participants will receive training, tandem kayaks are provided. Species highlights: brant; Pacific loon; pied-billed, eared and western grebes; double-crested cormorant; American white and brown pelicans.

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4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
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