Grant Will Help Protect Rare Butterfly Habitat (CA)

SAN MATEO, CA – The Trust for Public Land (TPL), a national land conservation organization, today announced that a $860,000 grant awarded by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) to the California Department of Fish and Game (DFG) will help protect land to aid in the recovery of federally-protected endangered butterflies.

The money will go toward the acquisition of 26 acres on San Bruno Mountain. San Bruno Mountain supports a remarkable number of rare and endangered species, including the endangered mission blue, San Bruno elfin, and callippe silverspot butterflies, as well as the threatened bay checkerspot butterfly. The mountain is the largest remaining tract of natural habitat for all four butterfly species on the northern San Francisco peninsula.

The property also contains one of the largest and oldest Native American shell mounds in the Bay Area. It is believed to have been created by the Costanoan/Ohlone Indians in approximately 3,200 B.C.

The grant was awarded by the FWS through the Habitat Conservation Plan Land Acquisition grant program, authorized under Section 6 of the Endangered Species Act (ESA). This program provides federal funds to protect the habitat of endangered and threatened species.

“The acquisition of this important parcel will protect critical endangered species habitat, preserve unique cultural resources and round out the border of the San Bruno Mountain Park, an island of open space in the middle of a highly developed metropolitan area.” says Tim Wirth, Trust for Public Land’s San Francisco Bay Area Program Director.

The Trust for Public Land, established in 1972, specializes in conservation real estate, applying its expertise in negotiations, public finance, and law to protect land for people to enjoy as parks, greenways, community gardens, urban playgrounds, and wilderness. TPL depends on the support of individuals, foundations, and corporations. In California, TPL has completed more than 500 projects, protecting more than 220,000 acres of land. Across the nation, TPL has helped protect more than 1.4 million acres. For more information, visit TPL on the web at