South Parcel is an open space area located on the coast between Coal Oil Point Reserve and Ellwood Mesa, extending from the beach north to the North Parcel faculty housing and restoration area. Under protection by a conservation easement granted by the Land Trust for Santa Barbara County, the property serves partially as a 12 acre mitigation site for the nearby North Campus Faculty Housing Project. The site map currently shows that South Parcel covers an area of about 34 acres. This includes the ungraded portion of the North Campus Open Space restoration project, which South Parcel will eventually become part of.
In 1965, topsoil was removed from the site and used to fill the upper portion of Devereux Slough for the construction of Ocean Meadows Golf Course. Land manipulation has accelerated erosion across the site and has enabled non-native invasive plants to colonize many areas. Although highly disturbed, the South Parcel is part of a unique coastal ecosystem and continues to provide a rich foraging area for raptors and other native species.
The South Parcel Habitat Restoration Project will ensure ongoing stewardship and maintenance of the area while providing recreational and educational benefits for UCSB and the community.
Image of South Parcel in 2008 showing non-native annualgrasses and fennel dominated areas.
Soil and seedbank studies were initiated in 2009 to evaluate restoration strategies.