Sunday, May 20 , 2018, 10:58 am | Mostly Cloudy 62º


Local News

Surf Beach Reopened After Access Violations

Surf Beach west of Lompoc has been reopened to public use after being closed last month due to a spike in access violations during the western snowy plover breeding season.

The closure began April 10, and was imposed under an agreement between the Air Force and U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service.

Only limited segments of Surf and other base beaches are open from March 1 through Sept. 30 so the small shorebird can nest.

Once a violatons threshold is reached, the beach must close for the remainder of nesting season.

The limit for Surf Beach is 50, and already 37 violations have been recorded this season, according to officials with the 30th Space Wing at Vandenberg.

“It is our duty as both military and local community members to be good stewards of the environment by maintaining a clean and safe habitat for the Western Snowy Plover to nest and continue to thrive on
Vandenberg beaches,” said Col. Nina Armagno, 30th Space Wing commander.

Violators of beach restrictions can be fined up to $5,000 in federal court.

Violators of the Endangered Species Act (e.g. crushing eggs or chicks) can face fines up to $50,000 in federal court and imprisonment for up to one year.

Some beach rules include:

- No littering (including fishing bait and fish remains). Please use trash
containers located at beach entry points.

» No pets off-leash.

» No camping.

» No beach fires.

» No fireworks.

» No kite flying.

» No feeding wildlife.

» No horses or ATV’s (except for authorized enforcement personnel).

To report violators on any of Vandenberg’s beaches, call the conservation office at 805.606.6804, or the law enforcement desk at 805.606.3911.

For more information about the western snowy plover, call The 30th Civil Engineer Squadron Natural Resources Office at 805.605.0392.

Noozhawk executive editor Tom Bolton can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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