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Año Nuevo Island

Seabird Conservation
and Habitat Restoration


Oikonos is working with a team of ecologists, habitat restoration experts, artists, designers and land managers to restore degraded habitat for nesting seabirds on Año Nuevo Island, California. In addition, partners are continuing the impressive 23 year program to monitor the health of breeding seabirds in the Reserve and their oceanic environment.

More Info

Restoration Project Blog
Photos & Videos


In 2015, Oikonos led the 23rd consecutive year of seabird studies at Año Nuevo State Park (initiated by the Park and PRBO Conservation Science in 1993).


Protection: To protect the seabird nesting area from destructive trampling by California sea lions, we designed and built an innovative Habitat Ridge.

Nest Modules: To provide stable and low maintenance nesting sites for Rhinoceros Auklets and other burrowing seabirds, we designed, produced, and installed 87 clay nest modules.

Restoration: To stabilize the burrow habitat and improve nesting success, we installed over 15,000 native coastal grasses and shrubs.

Population and Reproduction Studies: To document long-term seabird health, we documented the breeding population size and reproductive success of 8  seabird species.

Success of Habitat Restoration:

  • a reduction in burrow collapse due to erosion (6% of burrows were damaged in 2012, compared to an average damage rate of 25% before planting from 1997-2010), and
  • an increase in plant cover (native plants in restoration plots ranged from 12 to 79%)

The Cassin’s Auklet population continued to grow rapidly, with a new record of breeding birds.

Rhinoceros Auklet breeding population was relatively stable with an increase in the number nesting in natural burrows in the restoration area.


Publicaciones y Papers

juvenile_salmon_RHAU diet

Temporal and Sex-Specific Variability in Rhinoceros Auklet Diet in the Central California Current System

Carle R., Beck J., Calleri D., and Hester M. 2015. Journal of Marine Systems 146:99-108.

Año Nuevo State Park Seabird Conservation and Habitat Restoration:Report 2014

Carle, R., Beck, J., Calleri, D., Hester, M. 2014. Unpublished report to CA Dept of Parks and Recreation, Año Nuevo State Park. Oikonos – Ecosystem Knowledge.

Synthesis of Habitat Use by Black-footed Albatross tracked from Cordell Bank National Marine Sanctuary (2004 – 2008) and Kure Atoll Seabird Sanctuary (2008)

Hyrenbach D., Hester M., Adams J., Michael P., Vanderlip C., Keiper C., and Carver M. 2012

Extremely Wild and Very Smelly, Año Nuevo Island Restoration

Santa Cruz Sentinel, July 2013

Año Nuevo Island: Where the Wild Things Are

San Francisco Chronicle, 17 July, 2009.

Leaders, Funders & Donors, Volunteers


Ano Nuevo State Park
Go Native Inc.
UC Natural
Reserve System
California College
of the Arts
Point Blue