GUADALUPE-NIPOMO DUNES NATIONAL WILDLIFE REFUGE
The Guadalupe-Nipomo Dunes Refuge is located along the central coast of California, in San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara Counties. Bordered by the Pacific Ocean to the west and farmland to the east, the refuge encompasses one of the largest coastal dune systems remaining in California.
The refuge is situated in the heart of the Guadalupe-Nipomo Dunes Preserve, a partnership program among Federal, State, and private landowners for the cooperative management of coastal resources. This cooperative effort enables all partners to share limited resources to meet common goals, such as endangered species management and the removal of invasive species that threaten this fragile habitat.
The refuge was established to protect breeding habitat for the endangered California least tern and the threatened western snowy plover. The refuge also provides habitat for other endangered species, including the California tiger salamander (recently listed for protection under the Endangered Species Act), California red-legged frog, Morro blue butterfly, shoulder band dune snail, and 16 rare or endangered plant species.
Other recovering endangered species that use the refuge include large flocks of brown pelicans and a pair of peregrine falcons. The refuge contains healthy populations of mule deer, bobcat, and mountain lion, as well as large flocks of wintering shore birds and waterfowl.
The refuge is situated in a remote location within the greater Guadalupe-Nipomo Dune Preserve. Public access is provided by neighboring State and County park property. The refuge offers a unique wilderness experience not found in the other parts of the Preserve.
Guadalupe-Nipomo Dunes National Wildlife Refuge was established in August 2000, to protect breeding habitat for the endangered California least tern, California red-legged frog, and threatened Western snowy plover.