LA Times: Rare Plants Bulldozed, Rare Frogs Concreted

Written by on August 1, 2019

Bulldozers have plowed through hundreds of federally endangered plants in Topanga State Park … and the Los Angeles Times reports that state and city authorities have launched investigations into the Department of Water and Power actions.

D W P is in the midst of a wildfire prevention project in the Topanga Canyon areas … replacing wooden power poles with steel ones.

DWP bulldozers have plowed out a 24-foot wide access road …. right through hundreds of Braunton’s milk vetch plants.

Those plants are an endangered species whose remaining numbers have dwindled to less than 3,000 in the wild.

An amateur plant expert noticed the work was gettiong started …. and sent in a warning.

But then he discovered that D W P had gone ahead and bulldozed hundreds of the endangered plants.

Another complaint … and then D W P stopped the bulldozing.

The Coastal Commission tells the L A Times that they are “in the middle of an investigation into a lot of troubling questions.”

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the California Department of Parks and Recreation and the California Coastal Commission are trying to determine if any laws were broken.

——

And the L A Times also reports that county road crews may have wiped out an endangered colony of red-legged frogs while making emergency repairs to a culvert  on Mulholland Highway … above PCH in Leo Carrillo State Park.

Mulholland Highway is still closed … where heavy debris flows caused by last year’s Woolsey Fire have wiped out the road.

Biologists are working to reintroduce the once common frogs to streams in the Santa Monica Mountains … where they have not been seen in nearly half a century.

County road crews on an emergency mission to fill holes underneath the abutments of a culvert near Mulholland Highway. It was part of an effort to prevent the culvert’s collapse if it were hit by debris flows from fire-stripped slopes.

The work was halted after state officials contacted county public works with concerns about the potential for red-legged frogs inhabiting the site … a spokesman for the county told the L A Times.

LA Times article: https://www.latimes.com/environment/story/2019-07-31/endangered-plants-bulldozed-state-park-city-crews


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