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Docent Training, Biodiversity Top Calendar Items For September
wild 9-6
Sunset at the Elkhorn Slough Reserve in Watsonville, California. CDFW Photo By Travis VanZant

The September 2023 California Department of Fish and Wildlife calendar has been released and features a number of training and learning opportunities.

Wildlife areas, ecological reserves and other properties may be closed due to wildfires or storm damage. Hunters and outdoor enthusiasts are strongly encouraged to check for closures before leaving on any recreational trip.

Also, a reminder that all calendar items are subject to change.


Various Days

Shared Habitat Alliance for Recreational Enhancement (SHARE) access permit application deadlines for multiple hunting opportunities. Wild pig, deer, bear, turkey, dove and quail hunts are available through the SHARE program. A $12.75 non-refundable application fee (plus handling fees) is charged for each hunt choice. For more information, visit


Bat Talk and Walk Events, Yolo Bypass Wildlife Area, 45211 County Road 32B, Davis. Did you know that colonies of migratory bats live under the Yolo Causeway during the summer? Join Yolo Basin Foundation for a Bat Talk and Walk event and learn all about these amazing and beneficial mammals. Following a presentation on bat natural history, the group will carpool out to the Yolo Bypass Wildlife Area for a brief tour of the wetlands and rice fields before watching the “flyout” of the largest urban colony of Mexican free-tailed bats in California. The bats emerge in long ribbons as they head out to hunt for insects for the night. For more information and to register, visit


Discover the Flyway Docent Training, Yolo Bypass Wildlife Area, 45211 Country Road 32B, Davis. Join us this fall: become a Discover the Flyway docent with Yolo Basin Foundation and provide outdoor learning opportunities for K-12th grade students. Help teachers and students from local schools connect to nature, learn about science and protect wetlands through field trips to the Yolo Bypass Wildlife Area. For those who enjoy spending time outdoors with young people and appreciate being part of a community of volunteers, this is a wonderful opportunity. No experience in education or science is necessary. The 2023 docent training sessions will take place outdoors at the Yolo Bypass Wildlife Area Headquarters. For more information, visit



Tot Time at Nimbus Fish Hatchery, 11 a.m., 2001 Nimbus Road, Gold River. Join CDFW every Sunday for Tot Time at the Nimbus Fish Hatchery Visitor Center for nature-themed stories and create a fun craft. Recommended for children ages 2-7 years, with parent/guardian supervision. There is no cost for these events and registration is not required. For more information, email


Sept. 2-10

California Biodiversity Day takes place on Sept. 7 of each year, marking the anniversary of the launch of the California Biodiversity Initiative in 2018. This yearly event celebrates the state’s exceptional biodiversity, while also encouraging actions to protect it. CDFW and partner organizations are hosting nearly 100 activities statewide throughout the week of Sept. 2 through 10. For a list of events and volunteer opportunities, visit One easy way to get involved is to join the 2023 California Biodiversity Week Challenge on iNaturalist. Find and document 30 wild species in California and submit photos and observations on the platform through Sept 10. Tag the adventures and follow along on social media at #CABiodiversityDay. For more information, contact the CDFW Biodiversity Coordinator at


Saturday, Sept. 9

Tree Squirrel General Season opens, extending through Jan. 28, 2024. For more information on small game seasons and limits, visit

Mountain Quail General Season opens in Zone Q1, extending through Oct. 20. Sooty (Blue) Grouse General Season opens, extending through Oct. 9. White-tailed Ptarmigan General and Archery Seasons open, extending through Sept. 17. For more information, visit


Grasslands Waterfowl Clinic, 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., San Luis National Wildlife Refuge Visitor Center, 7376 South Wolfson Road, Los Banos. This clinic will focus on waterfowl hunting opportunities located in the famous Grasslands. The Los Banos area has thousands of contiguous acres of marsh that is home to numerous waterfowl during the waterfowl season. Come learn how to take advantage of the waterfowl hunting opportunities that exist in Central California. For more information, contact Erick Elliott at (530) 233-0658 or To register, visit


Elkhorn Slough Reserve Bioblitz, 10 a.m. to noon, 1700 Elkhorn Road, Watsonville. In celebration of California Biodiversity Week, the Elkhorn Slough Reserve will host a reserve-wide bioblitz. Citizen scientists will help record the rich diversity of plants and wildlife found in the many habitats on the reserve. The morning will begin with a quick tutorial on iNaturalist before heading out to the field with reserve docents to snap photographs of the flora and fauna. For more information, contact


Teachers on the Reserve Workshop, Elkhorn Slough Reserve, 1700 Elkhorn Road, Watsonville. This one-day workshop is an introduction to the habitats, plants and wildlife on the Elkhorn Slough Reserve. Lasting three hours, the workshop combines informative presentations with topical field activities and will introduce teachers to the natural history of the area, demonstrate various fieldtrip activities and share the many resources available to teachers for both in-person and virtual visits. To register, visit For more information, contact


Friday, Sept. 15

Feather River Fish Hatchery Ladder Opening, 5 Table Mountain Blvd., Oroville. The ladder will open Sept. 15 and salmon spawning will begin the following week, continuing through approximately mid-November. For more information, call (530) 538-2222 or visit


Sunday, Sept. 17

Bats and Crafts, 10 a.m. to noon, Yolo Bypass Wildlife Area, 45211 Country Road 32B, Davis. Perfect for little ones who can’t stay up late enough for the Bat Talk and Walk, this fun-filled day will include meeting live bats, arts and crafts, games and other bat-related activities. For more information and to register, visit


Tuesday, Sept. 19

California Fish and Game Commission Wildlife Resources Committee Meeting, time to be determined, San Jose Scottish Rite Center, 2455 Masonic Drive, San Jose. The meeting will also be held via webinar/teleconference. For more information, visit


Saturday, Sept. 23

Oroville Salmon Festival, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., Feather River Fish Hatchery, 5 Table Mountain Blvd., Oroville, and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. in downtown Oroville. The event will feature tours to view salmon spawning, informational booths, educational displays and vendor booths. For more information, visit


Elkhorn Slough Reserve Annual Open House, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., 1700 Elkhorn Road, Watsonville. This year’s event will honor National Hispanic Heritage Month and celebrate the local community. Join in for a fun-filled, family-friendly day. The event will include kids crafts and games, informational booths highlighting the reserve’s research and stewardship work, demonstrations by CDFW wildlife officers, bilingual bird walks and more. For more information, call 831-728-2822.


Sept. 23-24

Youth Waterfowl Hunt Days for Northeastern California Zone. To participate, hunters must be 17 years of age or younger and be accompanied by a non-hunting adult 18 years of age or older. People should contact the wildlife area or national wildlife refuge they wish to hunt for details. For more information, visit


Friday, Sept. 29

California Spiny Lobster Recreational Fishing Season opens statewide, 6 p.m. Beginning with the 2023-24 season, the recreational lobster fishery starts at 6 p.m. on the Friday preceding the first Wednesday in October. For more information about the new lobster regulations in place this season, see the Marine Management News article, Changes to Recreational Spiny Lobster Fishing Regulations for the 2023-2024 Season.


Saturday, Sept. 30

North Sacramento Valley Waterfowl Clinic, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Gray Lodge Wildlife Area, 3207 Rutherford Road, Gridley. The clinic is designed for all skill levels. Covered topics include concepts of decoy placement, blind design, ballistics, calling, duck identification and safety. Other topics will include hunting on state and federal Waterfowl Management Areas and game care. For more information, contact Erick Elliott at (530) 233-0658 or To register, visit