WildlifeHabitat Restoration in an Urban Park in Southern California Academic Article uri icon


  • Within an urban park in southern California, the relationship between the structure and floristics of vegetation and the distribution, abundance, and behavior of wildlife was studied in relatively undisturbed areas (San Luis Rey) and in contiguous areas (Guajome Park) in need of restoration. These data were used to develop recommendations for the enhancement of native animal species in the park. The abundance of amphibians and reptiles was highest in native upland scrub and willow (Salix)riparian vegetation types, and lowest in dry, disturbed sites. Western fence lizards (Sceloporus occidentalis) were the most abundant reptile throughout both study areas. Overall, bullfrogs (Rana catesbiana), an exotic species, were the dominant amphibians; the native Pacific treefrog (Hyla regilla) was rare throughout. At both study areas, the small mammal community was dominated by western harvest mice (Reithrodontomys megalotis) and deer mice (Peromyscus maniculatus) and, to a lesser extent, by brush mice (P. boylii) and exotic house mice (Mus musculus). Negative correlations in abundance existed between house mice and harvest mice, and between house mice abundance and overall small mammal abundance. In riparian sites, cottonwood (Populus fremontii) and various height classes of willow were the dominant factors in the majority of bird abundancehabitatcorrelations and where foraging activities were concentrated. Recommendations for enhancing native animal species include reduction of marsh sedimentation, removal of feral species, and development of connections between the park and nearby natural areas. A corridor of native riparian vegetation (primarily cottonwoodwillow) should be developed to replace the existing agricultural fields, thereby linking Guajome with the San Luis Rey River. Copyright 1994, Wiley Blackwell. All rights reserved

published proceedings

  • Restoration Ecology

author list (cited authors)

  • Morrison, M. L., Scott, T. A., & Tennant, T.

citation count

  • 7

complete list of authors

  • Morrison, Michael L||Scott, Thomas A||Tennant, Tracy

publication date

  • March 1994