What is a Wetland?
Coastal Wetland habitats fall in the transitional zone between land and sea. Ballona is the last remaining wetland in Los Angeles. The Ballona Wetlands are an estuary: a place where a river meets the sea. These coastal wetlands support a variety of wildlife species, from arthropods to small mammals, to birds, and provide educational and community opportunities.
Wetlands possess a mixture of species, conditions and interactions, making them among the planet’s most diverse and varied habitats. Many elements help define wetlands: soils, hydrology and species that occur within them. Soils are known as hydric soils, which are saturated or submerged all or part of the year. Wetlands along coastlines include mangrove forests, coastal swamps and tidal marshes. Inland wetlands are made up of ponds, marshes, swamps, vernal pools and riparian systems. Although Ballona is a coastal wetland, historically it also includes inland wetland elements of vernal pools and riparian systems.