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Fern Watch

Fern Watch volunteers at Purisima Creek Redwoods Preserve.

Watching Ferns in the Redwoods for Signs of Climate Change

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The sword fern, one of the most common redwood forest plants, has become prominent in my life over the past few years. This is mostly due to the League’s Fern Watch project, which monitors the health of sword ferns throughout the redwood range. Even though these ferns are common, little is known about their ecology and how they respond to climatic change.

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You may see a red-breasted nuthatch at Memorial Park this Saturday!

Discover the Secrets of Memorial Park

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Join us this Saturday, September 27 as we walk the trails of Memorial Park discovering everything this amazing redwood forest has to offer. The League is partnering with San Mateo County Parks, the California Academy of Science and Sequoia Audubon for a Memorial Park Bioblitz.

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Students set up fern plots and learn scientific field techniques as part of Pepperwood Preserve's TeenNat program.

Conservation Scientists in the Making

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As an environmental educator, there is nothing better than seeing young people making observations and asking questions out in nature. Questions like, “Why do you think that bay tree and redwood are growing so close together?”, “Why are the tanoaks … Continued

Drought Distress

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I stumbled across a sea of sword fern that is showing signs of drought during my annual Fern Watch field campaign last month. Along the Damnation Creek Trail at Del Norte Redwoods State Park, the typically green carpet of sword fern … Continued

10th Anniversary Climb

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  This week, I celebrated 10 years of coast redwood forest research and had the pleasure of climbing into an old redwood at the Grove of Old Trees in Sonoma County. This little-known forest is where I learned to climb … Continued

Fern Watch Heating Up

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I’ve been keeping a close watch on Western sword fern, the most common plant in redwood forest, for about a decade now and it appears that the recent weather is taking its toll on the ferns. Through our climate change tracking project, Fern Watch, we … Continued

Oakland Tech Takes to the Woods

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Last Friday, three school buses motored up into the Oakland Hills with 140 ninth graders from Oakland Tech High School. These students joined us to visit Chabot Space & Science Center and explore the coast redwood forest just beyond. Despite … Continued

A Summer of Ferns

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The best part of the year for any field ecologist like myself, is the stretch of long summer days spent outside collecting data. Over the past two months, I journeyed into the coast redwood forest to take measurements in our … Continued

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