Habitat Spotlight: Oak Woodlands

Tuesday, Nov 1, 2022

Del Valle Regional Park boasts a variety of interesting and different habitats, and a very special one of them is the oak woodlands. 

The Del Valle oak woodlands are dominated by coast live oak, but also include valley oak, blue oak, and other California oaks, as well as pines and understory shrubs. These forests play an important role in protecting soils from erosion and landslides, regulating water flow in watersheds, and maintaining water quality in streams and rivers because the oak trees have such large root systems. 

Oak woodlands support a vast variety of life. At least 300 vertebrates, 1,000 native plants, 350 fungal species, and 5,000 arthropods utilize this habitat.

Oaks depend on animals to move around their acorns. California scrub jays are one of the most important movers of acorns. They like to bury acorns in soil, and if it gets forgotten, it’s already planted and ready to develop into a seedling!

Oak woodlands in the hills of Del Valle