New Report: Amphibian Conservation Strategy for Northern Monterey County

Northern Monterey County is a patchwork of residential areas, wetland and upland habitats, and agricultural production primarily on the floodplains and south facing slopes of the hillsides. While the county still hosts a number of habitats and diverse species, current and historic land use decision and management actions have directly affected the survival and fitness of endemic amphibians, particularly the Santa Cruz long-toed salamander (SCLTS) (Ambystoma macrodactylum croceum). Restricted to a highly constrained range in southern Santa Cruz and northern Monterey County (Figure 1), this Plan identifies key impediments to the species recovery, including the loss of functional breeding ponds due to salt water intrusion and mosquito abatement activities, habitat fragmentation and the severing of migration corridors. Through a two-year planning process with a Technical Advisory Committee, the recommendations of this Plan are actionable and adaptive strategies designed to address the goal of creating self-sustaining and connected SCLTS populations.

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