Find Out More About the Birds of the Arroyo
Favorite Local Birds
- California Quail
- Red-tailed Hawk
- Black Phoebe
- Yellow Warbler
- Great Blue Heron
- California Thrasher
The Wildlife of Hahamongna
Hahamongna is home to a wide variety of critters of every sort because of the rare blend of diverse habitats and because it is the connecting link with the San Gabriel Mountains. Described here are just some of the animals who frequent Hahamongna.
The Arroyo Toad (Bufo californicus) is a stocky, blunt-nosed, warty-skinned creature formerly found in Hahamongna and the upper Arroyo Seco watershed. In 2001-2002 there was a major controversy over a federal plan to list this area as designated habitat for the endangered toad, but local and Bush administration officials quashed that plan.
Bobcat (Lynx rufus californicus) are a common visitor to Hahamongna. They are known to inhabit and breed in the San Rafael Hills as well as in the mountain watershed. They favor brushy, rocky slopes for their nocturnal hunting and prefer rock crevices or caves for denning, although they will use hollow logs or dense shrubs if necessary. A typical bobcat diet consists of rabbits, ground squirrels, mice,pocket gophers and wood rats.
Gray Fox (Urocyon cinereoargenteus) live in chaparral habitat, wooded areas and among boulders on the slopes of rocky ridges in canyons and open desert. The only member of the dog family that can climb trees, they usually do so to seek refuge or roosting prey birds, or sometimes to sun themselves. They can scale just about any kind of fencing, climb trees, telephone poles, etc. They are sometimes seen on rooftops of houses and buildings. Gray Fox are also good swimmers and sometimes frequent riparian habitats. On the ground the species can reach a speed of 28 mph for short distances. Although primarily nocturnal, timid and elusive, the Gray Fox may sometimes be seen foraging during the day, seeking primarily small mammals such as rodents, but, being an omnivore, the fox will also eat eggs, insects, birds, fruits, acorns and berries. They generally will not harm a domestic adult cat or small dog. They will not attack a human but will fight to protect their young. Foxes' primary enemies are large predators, including eagles, large owls, bobcats, domestic dogs, coyotes, and humans. Grey Fox have been spotted in the Lower Arroyo but frequent Hahamongna, the San Rafael Hills and the Flint Wash area.
Coyote (Canis latrans) has been documented as a Keystone species in fragmented San Diego County coastal sage scrub habitats (Crooks and Soul頱999) and may serve a similar function in Los Angeles County. Because of their apparent ubiquity in the watershed they have not beenselected as a focal species for this study to date, the Coyote may be essential to maintaining ecological balance in the absence of Mountain Lion
The Mountain lion (puma concolor) is the top carnivore and Keystone species of Southern California ecosystems. Its absence precipitates cascading impacts down the ecological pyramid. In the Arroyo Seco watershed, Mountain Lion is generally confined to areas above Devil�s Gate Dam and in the mountains. Bobcats, whose habitat requirements are relatively less demanding, may serve some of the ecological functions of Mountain Lions in the more urbanized portions of the watershed. Bobcat, along with Coyote and Gray Fox, adequately patrol much of the ecosystem as predators.
Deer frequently pass through Hahamongna as they travel from the mountain watershed to the San Raphael Hills. Often they can be seen grazing in the area just above the JPL bridge.The material was adapted from the Habitat Restoration in the Arroyo Seco Watershed Appendix written by Verna Jigour Associates as part of the Arroyo Seco Watershed Restoration Feasibility Study (2002). You can review the document by clicking here: Habitat Restoration