The Madrona Marsh is a hidden gem for nature lovers in Torrance. Free and open to the public Tuesday through Sunday, 10AM to 5PM, it’s a great place to explore and take in the native habitats of the South Bay. There are also regular events like guided tours, hikes, bird watching, and a “Tyke Hyke” for families with younger explorers. The preserve hosts a mix of different habitats, with a large section of spring marsh that fills with rainwater and also higher dune and prairie sections.
While much of the South Bay has been developed, the Madrona Marsh remains an important refuge for native species. It is recognized as a Significant Ecological Area by the county and home to 101 species given protected Special Status. Water fowl and migrating birds especially need areas like the marsh to nest and rest.
The City of Torrance and Friends of the Madrona Marsh non-profit have been preserving the area since the 70’s. There are plenty of volunteer opportunities for anyone who wants to contribute or do some community service. One can train as a docent to lead tours, care for animals in the science center, or do habitat restoration work. Keeping the area clear of trash, removing non-native plant species, and planting and protecting native species keeps the marsh healthy and a haven for California’s wildlife. Check out the Friends of the Madrona Marsh website for what you can do to help and more information about visiting.