Natural Resources

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The Airport Authority works diligently to protect the natural resources on and around the airport facilities and in the surrounding community. The Airport Authority is proud to provide a protected habitat for the endangered California least tern, a migrating seabird that finds nesting opportunities along the southeastern property line of the airport. The Airport Authority also seeks to prevent, eliminate, and minimize the impacts of stormwater runoff on eel grass beds that grow in San Diego Bay near the storm drain outfalls.

The San Diego International Airport is home to the California least tern (Sterna antillarum browni, “CLT”), a federally listed endangered seabird species. The airport provides the CLT with nesting habitat and easy access to foraging opportunities in nearby San Diego Bay. There are several other nesting areas around San Diego Bay, and the Airport Authority works cooperatively with the US Fish & Wildlife Service, the Port of San Diego, the US Navy to protect the CLT and its habitat.

The Airport Authority continues to work with the Port of San Diego and the San Diego Zoological Society’s Center for Reproduction of Endangered Species (CRES) to monitor the CLT on the Airport Authority’s properties. Click here for more information.

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At the airport, California Least Terns (CLT) create their nests on sand and gravel. Their eggs are 1.2 inches long on average and are speckled to easily camouflage with their surrounding habitat.

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