Dunes in Bloom: Black Sage

i May 13th l Comments Off 3 by Dunes Center

black sage banner

Common Name(s): Black Sage

Scientific Name: Salvia mellifera

Family: Lamiaceae (Mint)

Plant Type: Perennial Evergreen Shrub

Size: 3-6’ Tall and various sizes in width

Black sage is Native to Southern California and Mexico and grows between sea level and 1200 meters. Visit the Dunes Center to see this wonderful native plant in person! (more…)

Dunes in Flight: the Belted Kingfisher

i Apr 10th l Comments Off 3 by Dunes Center

Dunes in Flight Belted Kingfisher Banner

The Belted Kingfisher (Megaceryle alcyon) is our choice for this month’s “Dunes in Flight.” Kingfishers can be found throughout North America and have even been found in far off exotic regions like the Galapagos Islands and the Hawaiian Islands. Although they are widespread, they are not a particularly common sight. Lucky birders will most likely observe this species near bodies of fresh and brackish waters. There is a good chance of spotting this species at Oso Flaco Lake. (more…)

Coming Up at the Dunes Center: Building Bird Boxes for Western Bluebirds

i Mar 4th l Comments Off 3 by Dunes Center

Western Bluebird Bird Box Building Banner

Building Bird Boxes for the Western Bluebird (more…)

Dunes in Flight: the Great Blue Heron

i Jan 23rd l Comments Off 3 by Dunes Center


great blue heron 300x700

The Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias) is our bird of choice for this month’s “Dunes in Flight.” This heron’s range is extensive across North America, and several individuals may be spotted throughout the Guadalupe-Nipomo Dunes Complex on any given day, particularly near bodies of water. They appear blue-gray with a wide black stripe over the eye. Primary flight feathers are a deep blue, while the forewing is pale or gray. Its wingspan is about 6 feet, and despite being up to 4 feet tall, it is a relatively lightweight bird at around 5 lbs.


Volunteer Spotlight: Kiersten Demmond

i Jan 22nd l Comments Off 3 by Dunes Center

Kiersten Demmond Photo for Jan 2015 Volunteer Spotligh

Kiersten Demmond is an exceptional member of the Dunes Center’s educational team. Kiersten is a Liberal Studies and Studio Art student at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, and has been working specifically on the Dunes Center’s Creative Writing program, teaching students about natural science, different mediums of art, and integrating the two disciplines in her lessons. In her spare time, Kiersten enjoys hiking, spending time with friends, and exploring new mediums of art. Kiersten has been able to pursue subjects she is passionate about through the Dunes Center’s environmental education internship.


Dunes in Bloom: Marsh Sandwort

i Jan 22nd l Comments Off 3 by Dunes Center

marsh sandwort 300x700For the month of January, our chosen plant of the month is Marsh Sandwort, known scientifically as Arenaria paludicola.  Marsh Sandwort has a very limited range, and has been federally listed as an endangered species since 1993.