Yosemite Lake Conservation Area Restoration
This project re-established and enhanced the vernal pools and seasonal wetlands at the Yosemite Lake Conservation Area (YLCA). This area is an approximately 397.5-acre site intended to provide a location for wetland and endangered species mitigation and also a commercial habitat conservation bank for remaining preserved lands that are not allocated for mitigation.
- 5G’s Corporation
- Merced County, California
- 397.5 acres
- 715 vernal pools constructed
- Grassland, wetland, vernal pools, swales, freshwater marshes
The site consisted of low rolling grassland hills interspersed with vernal pools, swales, clay flat wetlands, and natural seeps. Vegetation communities within the YLCA site include 338.1 acres of non-native grassland with scattered riparian vegetation and 59.4 acres of wetland habitats. The goal of the project was to re-establish (construct) 31 acres of vernal pool and swale habitat and 10.8 acres of deep vernal marsh habitat.
The field layout of the vernal pool and mima mounds were adjusted to utilize existing site topography, hydrologic patterns and pathways, vegetation, and existing soil depths and compositions as determined by soil sampling and analysis. The project resulted in a series of isolated and interconnected vernal pools, swales, and mima mound uplands that mimicked and blended into the existing site topography and the preserved pools and swales. In addition, HRS harvested inoculum from off-site vernal pools and placed it in the constructed pools to help “kick start” the colonization of vernal pool flora and branchiopod species.
In Our Words
“As-built records were updated and kept current throughout the life of the construction period to provide up-to-date information regarding constructed area, pool depth class, and density distributions between the various site soil types. This level of accounting ensured that the required acreage of re-established vernal pools were created and allowed for the construction of an additional 2.2 acres of contingency wetland creation.”
Mark Girard, CEO/Founder