Lake Mathews, which was formed in the Cajalco Basin in the early 1940's, is the western terminus of the Colorado River Aqueduct.
The area is an important bird resting and feeding site, particularly in the winter months. In addition to a variety of ducks, double-crested cormorants, Phalacrocorax auritus, Western grebe, Aechmophorus occidentalis, eared grebe, Podiceps caspicus, golden eagles, Aquila chrysaetos, and the bald eagle, Haliaeatus leucocephalus, are present during the winter.
There are several islands, the number depending upon the water level, with the permanent ones and the mainland supporting a disturbed coastal sage scrub community.
Integrity: The lake was created in 1941. There are some buildings, parking areas and roads within the fenced area around the lake.
Use: Research, educational, observational.
Inventory of California Natural Areas
Revision © 2009 Steven Louis Hartman