REI Santa Rosa has named Audubon Canyon Ranch’s Bouverie Preserve in Glen Ellen as the recipient of a $5,000 grant for 2011. REI is a national outdoor retail co-op dedicated to inspiring, educating and outfitting its members and the community for a lifetime of outdoor adventure and stewardship. The company provided the grant to fund a one-year project to enhance the quality of the preserve’s trail system as well as provide support to promote and recruit volunteers for the Bouverie stewards group focused on habitat restoration projects at the preserve.
Specifically, the grant will be used to launch two community workdays, as well as recruit for and coordinate the weekly work crew of Bouverie stewards. In addition to promotion of these programs in REI’s store, newsletters and website, REI staff will also participate in the programs.
Volunteers with the Bouverie stewards program assist with a variety of habitat protection and restoration work, while learning about the ecology behind the project. Volunteers have the opportunity to help their environment, learn new skills and build community and friendships. Some examples of projects include: removing Douglas Fir seedlings and saplings from areas of the preserve; building and maintaining fencing for cattle; removing invasive species such as yellow star thistle and Himalayan blackberry; using GPS units to map invasive species; collecting seeds of native species; and planting native species such as oak trees and native grasses. Adding to their skills, the stewards will be assisting with the trail work on a regular basis in the upcoming year. Upcoming public workdays are scheduled for October 22, 2011, and May 18, 2012.