Parts of the reserve were used for agriculture and ranching before it was a reserve. These areas are dominated by annual European grasses, or other invasive weeds. We routinely remove the non-native species and replant the area with native species appropriate for each habitat. We only use seeds collected on the reserve to preserve the genetics of the original local population. This is very important because many of our researchers study population genetics and need the original plants with a DNA that reflects the evolutionary history of that locality. We grow the plants for restoration in our own greenhouse and shade huts.
Restoration has been a popular activity among the students. Over 900 people participate in restoration workdays each year. Volunteers work with reserve staff and interns to assist in several aspects of restoration such as planting, plant propagation and weeding. Both volunteer opportunities and paid internships are available in this program. Paid internships are generously funded by UCSB Coastal Fund and all UCSB students are eligible to apply.