Malibu Lagoon


Santa Monica Bay Audubon Society (SMBAS) invites the community to take a stroll through the Malibu Lagoon to observe some of the unique birds that travel through the area.

SMBAS was founded in 1978 and since then they have made it a tradition to host monthly field trips on the fourth Sunday of every month. The Malibu Lagoon is where Malibu Creek meets the Pacific Ocean and SMBAS is eager to get the public involved in their monthly field trips.

Lucien Plauzoles has been a member of SMBAS for 26 years and was a member of the Board for 15 years. Serving as President, Vice President, Conservation Chair, and Program Chair.

Plauzoles explained he will be leading the walk on Sunday along with a number of other local experienced birders and naturalists.

“Our field trips start with a quick observation about the site, the distribution of bird lists pertaining to the site, and quick instructions as need to use binoculars,” said Plauzoles. “The group then walks to various view sites that are particularly good for seeing a number of species, and of course observe birds.”

The walk gives the community an opportunity to explore the upper area of the Lagoon, slowly making their way to the beach. SMBAS explained there are a number of experienced observers who share their knowledge during the walk.

For the past two years a field trip consists of 37 visitors, many of them are surprised to see rare species protected under the Endangered Species Act, now breeding for the first time in 70 years.

Plauzoles said, “The lowest species counts for the Lagoon walk are in the low forties. The highest counts are in the low 70’s.”

The best time to view birds is from September through April, as summer is usually a slow time. However, this summer Malibu and Santa Monica received visits form the Western Snowy Plover.

“Discovering that a beach is not just a place for sun tanning and surfing is beautifully demonstrated at this monthly walk,” said Plauzoles.

The SMBAS will host their walk on Sunday, August 27.

Adult walk begins at 8:30 a.m., beginners and experienced visitors are welcomed for the 2 -3 hour walk. Species range from 40 in June to 60 – 75 species during migrations and winter.

The children and parents walk begin at 10 a.m., leaders are experienced with children. SMBAS has an ample supply of binoculars for everyone.

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