Wildlife and Habitat

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Nature and Wildlife

The dynamic history of Shoreline now provides an estuary environment and varied ecosystems for wildlife and a large number of species of birds including the resident Species of Special Concern, the Burrowing Owl.

To protect and care for this unique environment, please follow the no domesticated animals policy here at Shoreline.

Shoreline Wildlife Management Plan

The City adopted the Shoreline Wildlife Management Plan (SWMP) in March 2023. The SWMP works within the framework of other plans for Shoreline and the North Bayshore Area, including the Burrowing Owl Preservation Plan, North Bayshore Precise Plan EIR, Post Closure Maintenance Plan (landfill) and efforts related to the Sea Level Rise Study. working on a Shoreline Wildlife Management Plan. The SWMP can be found here.

Burrowing Owl Preservation Plan

Burrowing OwlThe Western Burrowing Owl is a small, brown and white barred owl that stands 8-10 inches tall. Burrowing Owls may be present in any areas with ground squirrel burrows or artificial burrows on flat ground, hillsides or low embankments. Shoreline at Mountain View is one of four sites in the Bay Area that the Western Burrowing Owl calls home. 

In 1998, the City of Mountain View formally implemented the first of two Burrowing Owl Management Plans to ensure the safety and success of this "Species of Special Concern." In 2012, the City updated the Burrowing Owl Preservation Plan to further the efforts to protect this species while completing necessary work and maintenance on infrastructure located within Shoreline. 

Protect the low-flying Burrowing owl and other species at Shoreline by observing the 25 mph speed limit when driving through the park, stay on pathways and use caution when viewing the charming Western Burrowing owl from afar.

Mayors Monarch Pledge

Monarch SignSince 2021, each Mayor of Mountain View has signed onto the Mayor’s Monarch Pledge through the National Wildlife Federation. As part of this pledge, the City of Mountain View committed to three actions:

  1. Continue native plant enhancement at Shoreline at Mountain View that has been ongoing for the past 10 years to increase biodiversity to benefit many local species, including monarch butterflies;
  2. Engage with community garden groups and urge them to plant native milkweeds and nectar-producing plants; and
  3. Host a native seed giveaway facilitated through Mountain View Public Library’s Seed Library program to make milkweed seeds available to the public with additional education and outreach of butterfly-friendly planting being conducted as part of the City’s Arbor Day Tree Giveaway program.

The City is excited to be part of the Mayor’s Monarch Pledge and received $30,000 from Google to support these efforts. Additional information is below on what actions from the pledge the $30,000 will be spent. Additional information can be found in the press release.

Continue Native Plant Enhancement at Shoreline at Mountain View

Shoreline at Mountain View is already designated as a Monarch Waystation by Monarch Watch due to the past efforts of staff and volunteers to plant milkweeds and other pollinator plants. To continue building on these efforts in Shoreline, a portion of the $30,000 from Google will go towards enhancing three areas within Shoreline with additional plants for pollinators The two main goals of the new plantings is to provide the local milkweed as a larval food source for monarch caterpillars and to provide a pollinator source for adult monarchs. The native plants for this project have been chosen to provide nectar, pollen, seeds and berries to benefit a diversity of pollinators and other wildlife.

Staff plan to emulate the success of past projects where volunteers helped enhance areas of Shoreline to increase biodiversity. For instance, the Valley Water restoration area along Permanente Creek was a multiyear project where upon completion the following species were observed: 46 bird species, 90 invertebrates, 10 mammals, 2 amphibians, and 2 reptiles. Taking this same approach to the three identified areas will continue to increase biodiversity, specifically enhancing the habitats for monarchs.

Engage with Community Garden Groups

The City has partnered with GreenSpacesMV, a local nonprofit, to create a pollinator habitat at Cuesta Park. The project is expected to be completed in 2022 and will create a habitat that enhances the local pollinator and wildlife environment with native plants while increasing biodiversity. The project will be planted and maintained by volunteers with support from the City. In addition to serving as a habitat for pollinators, the project will also be an educational site for visitors in order to raise public awareness about the importance of biodiversity and pollinators, including the monarch butterfly. It will also serve a demonstration habitat where people can learn how to establish and propagate native plants for their own yards.

Host Native Seed Giveaway

In addition to the efforts described above, the City has also added native, local milkweed seeds to its Seed Library program through the Mountain View Public Library. Through the program, individuals can visit the Seed Library within Mountain View library and take seeds for free along with educational materials on how to plant and grow them. View additional information on the MVPL Seed Library Program.

Previous Success with Monarch Butterflies at Shoreline

During June 2018, a female monarch butterfly was observed laying eggs on one of the showy milkweed plants. Eggs were observed soon afterwards on the underside of the leaves and at least 4 monarch caterpillars survived. Photos below.

Monarch egg laying and caterpillar growth process