Emergency and Safety Plan

The Santa Cruz Island Reserve is a remote island with limited resources. We take safety extremely seriously. We ask all visitors to read our Emergency Operations Plan, and fill out a Field Safety Plan to help ensure your visit goes smoothly. 

Santa Cruz Island

What to See

In its vastness and variety of flora, fauna and geology, Santa Cruz Island resembles a miniature California. Geologists believe that the island has never been attached to the mainland.

Researcher toolkit

Help us protect the island’s natural resources

To protect the island’s many native species, all clothing, tools, equipment and supplies should be inspected and cleaned of plant propagules and soil prior to departure from the mainland and when moving between islands. 


The reserve’s herbarium consists of specimens collected on the island as far back as the 1960s. Specimens located at the Santa Cruz Island Reserve Field Station will be transported for preservation to UCSB’s Cheadle Center for Biodiversity and Ecological Restoration.

Santa Cruz Island Bush Mallow

Related Resources

Santa Barbara Breeding Birds Study
Enter your observations

Click here to submit observations or explore data in eBird

Great Backyard Bird Count 
Click here to submit observations or explore data in GBBC

CINPS Bird Checklist 
Click here to download a PDF of a 2011 bird checklist by Dr. Paul Collins

“The Songbirds of the Channel Islands”
A YouTube video featuring Scott Sillett of the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center

Cheadle Center for Biodiversity & Ecological Restoration
Houses regionally focused collections of terrestrial plants, algae, and vertebrates, as well as an extensive plant anatomy collection, at UC Santa Barbara.

Museum of Vertebrate Zoology
A center for research and education in the biology of vertebrates—fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds, and mammals—at UC Berkeley. Click here to search for additional Santa Cruz Island specimens.

Western Foundation of Vertebrate Zoology 
Also known as “The Bird Museum.” Click here to find information on bird specimens of the Channel Islands


Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary
Photos and videos

Partnership for Interdiscipliary Studies of Coastal Oceans (PISCO) 
Click here for access to PISCO Data

Santa Barbara Coastal LTER
Click here for access to LTER data