Conservation Tools

Conservation Subdivisions

Learn about subdividing land for the purpose of donating or selling a lot to a conservation agency:





Biological Resource Protection Policies & Maps

The Biological Resources page contains information on Ventura County’s natural environment—such as maps and publications on wetlands, wildlife movement corridors, and locally important plants—and local policies that are in place to protect these resources.





Funding for Wetland Projects

For information on funding and assistance programs available to individuals or nonprofit organizations for preservation and restoration-related projects:





Wetlands Project Permitting Guide

The Wetlands Project Permitting Guide - Regulations are wide-ranging and complex for projects that might alter streams or wetlands. Numerous agencies control what can and cannot be done; nevertheless, agencies’ definitions of wetlands and streams differ and some regulations may conflict. This guide explains current laws and provides examples of the required permitting processes through various agencies.





Wildlife Corridors





Guide to Native and Invasive Streamside Plants

The Guide to Native and Invasive Streamside Plants provides information to help protect one of the most valuable elements of a living stream—riparian vegetation. Using this guide, residents can help restore and enhance one of California’s most vital and endangered resources: the living stream environment.





Green Building & Energy Efficiency Tools

Incorporating “green building” into a project means taking steps to create buildings that are safe and healthy for people and that protect our environment.  While specific methods and products may vary from project to project in general, green building techniques seek to conserve natural resources, increase energy efficiency, and improve indoor air quality in all types of new construction.  Green Building Guidelines for home additions, new construction, and multi-family projects can be found on the County’s Build It Smart website link below.  This website provides tips for incorporating energy efficiency into homes and office buildings, offers County residents opportunities to benefit from reduced energy bills, and business owners to benefit from reduced operating costs as well as improved health and productivity.



Oak Woodlands Management Plan

The Ventura County Oak Woodlands Management Plan was completed in 2007 pursuant to guidelines and goals articulated in the State of California Oak Woodlands Conservation Program. Due to t statewide attention focused on Oak Woodlands preservation and a local recognition of their inherent resource value, the Ventura County Board of Supervisors directed the Planning Division to complete an Oak Woodlands Management Plan. In keeping with the primary priorities articulated in the Act, the County’s Plan includes a discussion of conservation priorities, maps out the known location of oak woodlands in unincorporated areas, and addresses issues of Oak Woodland habitat fragmentation.





Waterwise Gardening

The Waterwise Gardening web site is a guide for water conservation in the home landscape. Combining many sample water-efficient gardens for you to view and then the ability to identify and learn more about the plants within these gardens.





Watersheds Coalition of Ventura County

The Watersheds Coalition of Ventura County is a consortium of local jurisdictions, water agencies, special districts, and non-governmental agencies interested in promoting and implementing integrated regional water management planning efforts in Ventura County.





Solar Energy Systems

In order to encourage the installation of solar energy systems and to reduce energy consumption, the Board of Supervisors has waived the Zoning Clearances fees for Ground-Mounted Solar Systems. Roof-mounted solar energy systems (photovoltaic panels and the like) require no Zoning Clearance or Planning approval.  These are approved solely by the Building Department.





Rodent Control-Alternatives to Poisons

When it Comes to Rodent Control, Consider Alternatives to Poison

Spring is in the air and rodents may be in your garage, attic, closets, cabinets, tool shed or yard. It's a busy time for pest control companies and rodenticide sales. But nature can control rodent populations, if you let it. In the natural environment, there is balance. Every creature is prey to some animals and predator to others.

Raptors – owls, hawks, falcons, eagles and vultures – are rodents' natural predators. If you actively protect them and their habitat, you won't need to spend money on poisons and put desirable wildlife, pets and children at risk of accidental poisoning. Environmentally friendly tactics (such as providing tall trees that raptors favor) will encourage these birds of prey to hang around your yard and remove rodents for you.

Most raptors use the same nest for many years and some even pass from one generation to the next. Bald eagles are known to have used the same nest as long as 35 years. That makes them an excellent long-term control for rodent populations in the immediate area.

During breeding season, a family of five owls can eat as many as 3,000 rodents! You can encourage them by hanging a nest box on your property, but please don’t do that if you or any of your neighbors are using anticoagulant rodenticides. Remember that poisoned rodents can poison the predators, scavengers and pets that eat them!

Even though the state Department of Pesticide Regulation and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency have restricted public access to the most dangerous rodenticides, all rodenticides – including the types still available to consumers – are poisons that can kill wildlife, pets and children.

Unfortunately, even after stricter regulations on rodenticides were enacted, wildlife continue to be exposed to second-generation anticoagulant rodenticides (brodifacoum, bromadiolone, difenacoum and difethialone). Licensed pest control companies and agricultural producers are still free to use them. If consumers hire pest control companies, they should know that the materials the firms use could poison local wildlife. Only consumers can ensure that it doesn’t. The most effective pest control does not involve chemicals, but sanitation and exclusion.

Like most animals, rodents will congregate and multiply where food is available and they feel safe. The easiest way to discourage them is to remove or modify anything that could make them comfortable. Sanitation is the first step to controlling rodents. For example:

  • Keep your home and yard neat and clean. Don’t give rats places to hide.

  • Remove objects and plants that rodents can hide under, such as wood piles, debris, construction waste, dense vegetation and ground-covering vines like ivy.

  • Pick up fruit that has fallen from trees as soon as possible.

  • Secure your garbage in a tightly sealed can.

  • Seal water leaks and remove standing water that can attract unwelcome animals, breed mosquitoes and waste water.

To remove unwelcome rodents, set traps in secluded areas where they’ve been seen or are likely to travel: close to walls, behind objects, in dark corners, on ledges, shelves, fences, pipes and garage rafters. In areas where children, pets or birds might go, put the trap inside a box or use some kind of barrier for their safety. Check traps daily and wear disposable gloves when removing rodents from traps. Place them in a sealed plastic bag then into your garbage bin for weekly collection. Wash your hands after handling traps or rodents, even when using gloves.

Once you’ve removed mice and rats from inside the building, seal the entries they used to get in: openings where cables, wires and pipes enter buildings, and cracks or holes in the foundation, walls and roofs. Rodents can squeeze into holes as narrow as ½ inch diameter! Use hardware mesh and concrete, plaster or metal whenever possible. At the very least, stuff stainless steel or copper pot scrubbers, or Stuf-fit copper mesh wool into the spaces. All of these are sold online and at hardware and dollar stores.

If you feel you must use “rat poison,” please carefully follow the label directions for all rodenticides. Only use them in small treatment areas indoors or right against building walls in tamper-resistant bait stations, never out in open field or garden areas, where they’re most likely to reach wildlife and pets. Much more information and practical advice can be found on the California Department of Fish and Wildlife’s website at:
www.wildlife.ca.gov/living-with-wildlife/rodenticides.