Volunteers needed for butterfly habitat park

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The restoration of native plants and flowers is part of the plan to make the area a habitat for Monarch Butterflies, as well as bees and other vital insects.

Organizers are looking for volunteers to help with creating a “Monarch Nature Trail,” on a 1.2 mile strip of property that once held a railroad track onto the Naval Weapons Station Seal Beach. The park will start at the south end of the NWSSB, near the intersection of Bolsa Chica Road and Westminster Boulevard.

The Navy Railroad right of way land runs south, weaving through houses and the Boeing plant to Edwards Avenue in Huntington Beach.

The land was abandoned by the Navy around 2010 and the tracks were removed in 2012. The land was later relinquished back to the cities it passes through.

According to organizers of the park, there was backlash from the community after the City of Huntington Beach planned to lease some of the land to auto dealerships for car storage. It was later decided by Huntington Beach and Westminster to allow the land to be converted to a passive park, for walking, running and cycling.

The restoration of native plants and flowers is part of the plan to make the area a habitat for Monarch Butterflies, as well as bees and other vital insects. Organizers are planning a community volunteer day to pull weeds, plant new vegetation and other needs to restore the park.

There will be a community volunteer day on Saturday, Aug. 7, from 9 to 11 a.m. According to the website: “Activities might include spreading mulch, picking up trash, weeding and some watering. We may also have some native California plants to get into the ground—which kids love. Also good for kids: spreading wildflower seeds! We provide trash bags and drinking water. Dress for outdoors: hat, sunglasses, sunscreen, close-toed shoes/boots.”

Volunteers should enter at the Rancho Rd. entrance (near Spa Drive, where parking should be available), and look for the table. The entrance is between Byrum Healthcare 5302 Rancho Road and Spa Drive through an opening in the chain-link fence on Rancho Rd.

For more information, email MonarchNatureTrail@hotmail.com.

Ted Apodaca is the editor of the Sun Newspapers  and Catalina Islander. He can be reached at editor@sunnews.org, or 562-317-1100. Follow him on Instagram: @tedapodaca

Volunteers needed for butterfly habitat park