Dozens of volunteers from Toyota, Dorsey High School, and the local community helped remove trash and invasive plant species as well as aid biologists in preparing for research at the endangered least tern colony near Marina del Rey Saturday, Sept. 18.

The effort was part of more than 200 TogetherGreen volunteer events occurring in more than 30 cities across the country throughout the year, according to Los Angeles Audubon. TogetherGreen is a new Audubon conservation initiative made possible by funding and assistance from Toyota.

Los Angeles Audubon works with the California Department of Fish and Game and project biologists to study the least tern colony near Marina del Rey, coordinating a community-based monitoring program during the nesting season. This project also provides the general public with opportunities to participate in habitat restoration in the fall and early spring when the birds are absent from the colony enclosure.

The Department of Fish and Game is currently sponsoring studies of this species at the colony enclosure, and the department’s Office of Spill

Prevention and Response has been a past sponsor. Study leaders include Ryan Ecological Consulting, and Los Angeles Audubon helps to coordinate volunteers.