California Least Tern Conservation

The California Least Tern is an endangered migratory bird. In Los Angeles County, it returns to only a few breeding colonies, one at Venice Beach, one at the Port of Los Angeles, and a relatively new colony at Malibu Lagoon State Beach.



Los Angeles Audubon works with Ryan Ecological Consulting, California State Parks and California Department of Fish & Wildlife studying the tern colonies in Venice and Malibu Lagoon, coordinating a community-based science monitoring program during the nesting season. These efforts are thanks to funding from US Fish & Wildlife Service, Audubon California, California Department of Fish & Wildlife, Explore the Coast, the Disney Worldwide Conservation Fund, and many generous donors.


We welcome new volunteers! If you’d like to participate, please contact our Project Volunteer Coordinator, Stacey Vigallon, at (323) 481-4037,

Tern monitoring takes place April through September, but we are happy to add your name to the volunteer list if you contact us outside that window.