LOS ANGELES (CNS) - In an effort to protect environmentally sensitive areas around the Ballona Wetlands, the City Council voted Tuesday to ban nighttime public access to the area.
The wetlands, the largest remaining wetland habitat in Los Angeles County, have dealt with people lighting campfires and dumping waste -- which has caused "significant damage" to the sensitive habitat area, according to the ordinance.
The habitat, which spans approximately 500 acres, contains several rare or endangered species including the El Segundo blue butterfly, Belding's savannah sparrow, Coastal California gnatcatcher, Least Bell's vireo and Light- footed Ridgeway's Rail, according to a motion field by former Councilman Mike Bonin in 2021.
The wetlands also help young fish shelter from potential predators and provide an outlet for water to stream into underground into rivers and aquifers, according to the motion.
The ordinance prohibits people from entering portions of the Ballona Wetlands Ecological Reserve that are east and north of Playa del Rey and Westchester, west of Lincoln Boulevard and south of the city boundary along Ballona Creek.