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Tank Hill

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Legend
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Tank Hill

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The Natural Areas Plan proposes to designate all 2.8 acres in this park as a “natural area”.  The rationale for this designation is not clear, as NAP admits this park has high levels of recreational use, yet has little or no “original habitat”.  There is no Federal or State listed endangered or threatened animal, bird, butterfly or plant in this area. There are three species of birds the local bird enthusiasts in the Golden Gate Audubon Society consider “sensitive”. There are two species of plants the local native plant hobbyists consider “sensitive”.  To protect these “sensitive” birds and plants (all of whose proposed protection has no official scientific recognition), NAP proposes:

 

         Destruction of non-native plants and shrubs at NAP discretion.

         Reduction in “predation pressure”.  This would refer to the killing of feral cats and any other wildlife NAP deems unacceptable.

         Closure of all (1411 feet) of social trails.

         Access to the public will be provided on 1261 feet of NAP designated trails only.  Fencing will be maintained to keep the public and their pets on the trails.

         Augmentation and reintroduction of “sensitive” species of plants to attempt to justify the closures.

         No further removal of trees.  The saga of trees removed at this site is ugly and has been a source of controversy for many years.  Please click here for some history of this issue at Tank Hill.  More...

         Large trees will be prevented from establishment on the slopes above Twin Peak Boulevard, and invasive trees will be prevented from establishing themselves in NAP designated areas.  NAP removes non-native seedlings and saplings and does not report them as trees they have removed.  Please see Wayne’s World Item #4 for further explanation.

         Erosion control will be implemented as needed.

         Plants at entry points to the park will be destroyed to make way for native plant gardens.

 

This NAP proposal for Tank Hill violates the underlying premise for NAP.  As stated by NAP Director Lisa Wayne, “preserve what is left of the original habitat and protect it from further degradation…enhance these little remnants that are degraded”.  NAP admits there is relatively little habitat here for small birds, and little or no original habitat.  NAP states specifically there is a “potential” habitat for bird, plant and Federally endangered butterfly species.  It is this specific habitat they hope to create.  Is this the Field of Dreams…build it and they will come?  What of the nightmare for neighbors, wildlife and non-native plants?

 

NAP has refused to disclose the cost to create this habitat.  Are these funds that could better be spent elsewhere in the park system?  Will there be the manpower and funds to maintain this new habitat?  Will it be sustainable? 

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