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PUC Biology Club Helps Restore Lake Berryessa Habitat

Katelynn Christensen, March 7, 2011
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Pacific Union College’s Biology Club sponsored a work bee Sunday, February 27, in which 16 students, staff, and faculty members volunteered with the Berryessa Trails and Conservation organization to help restore the wildlife habitat of local Lake Berryessa.

The group gathered to remove weeds, such as star thistle and fennel, and replace them with plants that are native to the area, such as foothill pine trees, manzanita, leather and scrub oak, and coyote brush, on the northwestern side of Lake Berryessa. They learned about the process of habitat restoration through hands-on experience.

“We’re hoping this is the first of many partnerships between PUC and conservation organizations,” says biology professor and club sponsor Aimee Wyrick. She believes that such activities provide valuable opportunities for PUC students, especially environmental studies majors.

The work bee is part of the initial stage of a larger combined effort between the Bureau of Reclamation, Berryessa Trails and Conservation, and the Audobon California Landowner Stewardship Program to act on the bureau’s commitment to preserve and protect natural resources around the lake. Ultimately, the project will plant more than 100 native trees, shrubs, and grasses to reestablish the lake’s native vegetation and wildlife habitat.

“It was great to work with the conservationists and experience biology outside of the classroom,” says Biology Club president Peter Han. “We did something worthwhile.”