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    Sunrise over Vallejo and Mt. Diablo as viewed from Cullinan Ranch
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    American Avocets feed in shallow tidal waters
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    Recently restored tidal marsh in the San Francisco Bay
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    Sandpipers take flight in a tidal lagoon
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    A quiet slough in the Napa Sonoma Marsh
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    Tidal marsh transitions to open water in the San Pablo Bay NWR

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What is all that dirt along the highway, are you widening the highway or building a runway?

A: Neither. The dirt visibile along the highway is material needed for the construction of an earthen levee. This levee will protect the Highway from potentially flooding once the Cullinan Ranch site is opened to tidal waters. We will be constructing a deceleration and an acceleration lane to safely access and leave Pond 1 parking lot which will involve widening the highway. This portion of the restoration is planned for Phase III.

Q: Will Cullinan Ranch be open to the public?

A: Absolutely! One of the goals/objectives of the project is to increase visitation to the San Pablo Bay NWR by providing an access point for people to learn about and enjoy the marsh.

Q: What are all the trucks doing coming on and off the highway?

A: These trucks are hauling in fill material from a nearby construction project. Part of the restoration objectives is to deliver immediate marsh habitat and bringing in material will help us do that. The project will build the ground elevation up to a level that marsh vegetation can establish once the site is breached. This will create immediate habitat that will support protected and endangered species that live in the vicinity.

Q: Will hunting be allowed at Cullinan Ranch?

A: Cullinan Ranch is currently closed to all hunting and will likely stay that way post restoration. There are many other places to hunt in the vicinity, including in the San Pablo Bay NWR south of Highway 37 and in the Napa Sonoma Marshes WA at Pond 1.

Q: I thought Ducks Unlimited was a hunting organization? Why are they involved in this project if there will be no hunting?

A: While Ducks Unlimited is rooted in the hunting tradition, they are interested in any conservation effort that benefits waterfowl. Their mission: "Ducks Unlimited conserves, restores, and manages wetlands and associated habitats for North America's waterfowl. These habitats also benefit other wildlife and people."

Q: What's that horrible smell? Is that coming from your project?

A: Possibly. Plants that are decomposing under water release methane which is commonly called "marsh gas". When excavating soil in the marsh this gas is released and if the wind conditions are right can be blown into bordering neighborhoods. This has happened a few times during this restoration, but has only lasted a day or two at most.

 

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