Parks, Reserves and Sanctuaries
In San Francisco Bay
Along the Central California Coast
Local groups and agencies or offices of national government agencies
- American Cetacean Society (ACS) - Monterey Chapter. ACS has a great
monthly newletter, "Soundings" which is the best source of
information about whales and dolphins in this part of California. The
group also has monthly talks in Pacific Grove by local researchers, and
occasional whale-watching trips.
Angel Island Association. Their mission is to support the
preservation and interpretation of history, structures, and natural
resources of Angel Island State Park. Working in partnership with the
California State Parks, they raise funds, educate and volunteer in
order to provide an enjoyable experience for the visitor. Angel Island
State Park depends on volunteers and docents to provide a level of support that park employees alone
cannot attain at current funding levels.
- Bay Access
is a group of volunteers working to improve and develop
launch sites and facilities for human-powered boaters around the San
Francisco Bay, by establishing the San Francisco Bay Water Trail
which will encircle the bay with a continuous chain of launch sites,
landings, and overnight accomodations.
- Bay Institute of
San Francisco is a non-profit research, education and advocacy
organization dedicated to restoring the Bay's ecosystem from the Sierra
to the Sea. They use a combination of scientific research and political
advocacy to work toward the environmental restoration of the entire
watershed which drains into San Francisco Bay.
- Bay Model
operated by the US Army Corps of Engineers in
Sausalito. The Bay Model is a 1.5 acre scaled operational model of the
Bay and Delta. Self-guided audio tours, both general and technical, are
available in English, French, Spanish, German, Japanese and Russian.
- Bay Nature
is a non-profit organization dedicated to educating the people of the San Francisco Bay Area about, and celebrating the beauty of, the surrounding natural world. They do so with the aim of inspiring residents to explore and preserve the diverse and unique natural heritage of the region, and of nurturing productive relationships among the many organizations and individuals working towards these same goals. They publish Bay Nature magazine four times a year.
is a watchdog group monitoring water quality in the Bay and Delta.
Baykeeper fills the gap between Clean Water Act laws and real
enforcement, protecting the health of San Francisco Bay, its tributary
streams and major rivers. BayKeeper's leadership in targeting and
stopping pollution has achieved local and national recognition.
Advocating for better water quality regulations and working closely
with understaffed agencies, BayKeeper reduces pollution through an
innovative program that includes maintaining and improving federal,
state, and local standards for water quality protection, conducting
investigations that challenge polluters, and working to educate an
active and informed public.
Marine Labratory with information about the Bodega Marine Reserve
Slough National Research Reserve and the Elkhorn Slough
Foundation. The latter is a nonprofit organization dedicated to
the wise use and conservation of Elkhorn Slough and surrounding
wetlands. It is member-supported, and works with local, state and
national constituencies to protect our natural heritage.
Traveling Companions opens the beauty and challenge of outdoor
adventures to people with special needs. Every year over 2,000 people
of all abilities join ETC to raft whitewater rivers, ski across alpine
meadows, sea kayak the waters of the Golden Gate and sleep beneath the
open sky. ETC trips enable participants to access the wilderness, gain
environmental awareness and share the adventure.
Marine Sanctuary Association is a non-profit, cooperating
association that helps protect the resources managed by the Gulf of the
Farallones National Marine Sanctuary through collaborative education,
interpretation, outreach, and research.
of the River is dedicated to preserving, protecting, and
restoring California's rivers, streams, and their watersheds. The
organization accomplishes its mission by providing public education,
citizen activist training and organizing, and expert advocacy to
influence public policy decisions on land, water, and energy management
- Friends of
the Sea Otter
- The Marine
Mammal Center in the Marin Headlands rehabilitates marine
mammals that have stranded, been abandoned, or shot.
- Monterey Bay
Audubon Society has local chapters all over the Bay Area,
including the Golden
and Sequoia (Peninsula) chapters. These chapters run trips, including some pelagic bird-watching trips.
- Point Reyes
Bird Observatory Besides their work at Pt Reyes, PRBO also
operates the research station at South Farallon Island. That's where
all the work on great white shark is being done.
- Point Reyes
National Seashore Association is a nonprofit organization
working in coordination with the National Park Service, their ongoing
mission is preserving the extraordinary wilderness and educating the
public about the environment.
- San Francisco
Bay Wildlife Society is a nonprofit cooperating association,
authorized by Congress to support the education, interpretation, and
research activities of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. SFBWS's
primary mission is to promote public awareness and appreciation of the
San Francisco Bay and its natural history, and to conserve and preserve
the remaining baylands as essential wildlife habitat. In addition, it
works to improve opportunities for low-impact public use, operates
bookstore in visitor centers at San Francisco Bay national wildlife
refuge, and funds educational events, research and exhibits in
cooperation with local, regional and state agencies.
- San Francisco Estuary Project
Our Shores (Monterey Bay) researches policy affecting the
Monterey Bay Sanctuary and its associated watersheds. They work as a
public liaison, informing and influencing the press and lawmakers on
critical issues. They provides activities that build awareness and
understanding of the Sanctuary's diverse habitats and conservation
- Save San
Francisco Bay Association The Save San Francisco Bay
Association (Save the Bay) was established in 1961 to prevent the
filling of San Francisco Bay and to open up the Bay shoreline to public
access. Their web site has an excellent directory of links to local
Club - San Francisco Bay Chapter. The Sierra Club is dedicated
to "explore, enjoy, and protect the wild places of the earth, practice
and promote the responsible use of the earth's ecosystems and
resources, educate and enlist humanity to protect and restore the
quality of the natural and human environment, and to use all lawful
means to carry out these objectives."
Foundation is a non-profit environmental organization dedicated
to the protection and enjoyment of the world's oceans, waves and
beaches for all people, through conservation, activism, research and
National groups and agencies
- American Cetacean Society.
This national group has been the leader in education and conservation
regarding cetaceans (whales and dolphins) for 30 years. They form a
very successful link between scientists, government officials, and lay
conservationists. They also have an active Monterey Chapter.
- Center for Marine Conservation.
This national organization also has an office in Monterey. They are
involved in many marine wildlife issues.
Defense is a leading national nonprofit organization that links
science, economics and law to create innovative, equitable and
cost-effective solutions to society's most urgent environmental
- Natural Resources Defense Council
uses law, science, and the support of more than 500,000 members
nationwide to protect the planet's wildlife and wild places and to
ensure a safe and healthy environment for all living things.