California Department of Fish and Wildlife

Eden Landing Ecological Reserve - Alameda County

wildlife viewing hiking waterfowl hunting

Recreation: Waterfowl hunting, wildlife viewing, hiking.

Contact information: Bay Delta Region in Napa at (707) 944-5500 or John Krause, CDFW Reserve Manager at (415) 454-8050.

Maps:   Directional Map (PDF)     Waterfowl Hunting Map (PDF)


Location: Along the east side of San Francisco Bay shoreline adjacent to Hayward and Union City, south of Hwy 92 and west of I-880.

PLEASE NOTE: For information on public use regulations for this area and other Department lands, please refer to the Public Lands Regulations Booklet on the CDFW Regulations page. All visitors are responsible for knowing and following these regulations.


  • Eden Landing Bay Trail: A segment of the Bay Trail opened in 2008 which connects points north of HI-92 and west of Eden Shores development to the reserve. To access the Eden Landing Bay Trail, take the Clawiter Rd/Eden Landing Rd. exit from Highway 92, and go south of the highway on Eden Landing Rd. to the end, near the intersection of Arden Rd.
  • Hunting: Hunting access to the reserve on dates specified annually by DFW is allowed at the Hunter Check Station from Veasy Street, off of Horner St. in Union City next to Old Alameda Creek. Take I-880 to Alvarado Blvd. exit, go west on Alvarado from I-880 approximately 2 miles, then turn right onto Union City Blvd, then less than 0.5 mile turn left onto Bettencourt Road, then left on Whipple Road. Turn right on Horner Street and then right on Veasy Street to the yellow gate.

Description: Approximately 6,400 acres of restored salt ponds, adjacent diked marshes and transitional areas to uplands are managed for resident and migratory waterbirds and tidal marsh habitats and species. The San Francisco Bay region provides varied habitat for many plant and animal species that support wintering and migrating waterfowl, as well as estuarine fish, resident shorebirds and mammals. Waterfowl species commonly seen in the area include mallard, Northern shoveler and pintail, ruddy duck, canvasback, widgeon, gadwall, scaup and Canada goose, among many others. In marsh areas, egrets, herons, stilts, avocets and sandpipers rest and prey on invertebrates in the shallow water and exposed mud flats. Managed salt ponds and diked areas also support wintering ducks. Tidal marsh habitat also acts as a significant nursery habitat for species of anadromous fish such as salmon and steelhead.

History: The area was formerly owned and managed by Cargill Salt Co. as solar salt production facilities. In 1996, 835-acres were acquired; In 1998, the area was designated as an Ecological Reserve by the Fish and Game Commission. Construction activities were completed on the 835 acre project in 2008, while passive restoration and active management continues. In 2003, the State and federal government, with contributions from private foundations, purchased 15,100 acres of salt ponds and other lands from Cargill, approximately 5,500 acres of which are part of ELER. Funds for the acquisition and restoration were provided by the Wildlife Conservation Board, including bond funds (Proposition 50). The long-term goals are to restore and enhance wetland habitats for migratory birds and threatened and endangered species, provide for flood management, and provide wildlife-oriented public access and recreation opportunities.

Restoration: Construction activities continue to complete Phase One of the South Bay Salt Ponds Restoration Project ( Ponds 8A, 9 and 8X were restored to full tidal action in November, 2011. Ponds 12 and 13 are under construction and will be reconfigured with new culverts, levees, berms and islands for intensive, shallow water management to benefit resident and migratory shorebirds, with limited deep water areas that are expected to be used by foraging waterfowl and other waterbirds. Once construction is completed in 2014-15, Ponds 12 and 13 will be managed primarily for shallow water, while deeper borrow ditches and swales will provide limited waterfowl habitat. Pond 14 is expected to be only shallowly inundated, rather than the typical 1-2 foot deep water. Pond E14 operations will focus on shorebird habitat management, as part of additional shallow water habitat enhancements. Construction is also expected to begin in Ponds 6A and 6B, which will require 2-4 weeks of work to complete the reconstruction of the 6A-6B cross-levee and install a new culvert from Pond 6A to 6B. Ponds 8 and 6B are expected to continue to be operated as deeper water for diving ducks, while Pond 6A will be maintained with a mix of more limited deep water and shallow water areas expected to provide habitat for diving ducks, dabbling ducks and shorebirds. Some blinds have been maintained, and boat launch/parking areas are also being improved. A new boat launch into Mt. Eden Creek is expected to be completed by the end of 2014 and may be available for the latter part of 2014-15.

Additional public access is expected to open in 2016, including a kayak launch, trails and interpretive features.

Waterfowl Hunting: only on dates specified.

2014: Saturday, Nov. 22; Saturday, Dec. 6; Thursday, Dec. 11 ; Saturday, Dec. 20

2015: Saturday, Jan. 3; Thursday, Jan. 8; Thursday, Jan. 15; Saturday, Jan.24

A small boat, kayak, canoe or floatation device is strongly recommended to access ponds, and sloughs. SHOOT ONLY WHAT YOU CAN RETRIEVE!

Failure to comply with all area rules, regulations and/or direction from DFW wardens/staff/volunteers is grounds for citation and/or ejection.
A 25 shell limit in the field (non-toxic shot only. No lead shells). Blind material, trash and spent shells shall be removed daily.
Hunters and guests need to remain on existing, graveled levee roads along Old Alameda Creek while driving on the property
Do not drive past orange cones. Do not block roads, park to side of roads only.
Do Not Shoot Over Access Roads

The property boundary of the ecological reserve is posted. The eastern-most marsh lands adjacent to the Alameda Creek Federal Flood Control Channel (“J” Ponds) and east of CDFW’s ponds are owned by Alameda County. The salt ponds south of Alameda Creek are owned by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and remain under Cargill’s management for salt making; these areas should be considered private property. Trespassing is prohibited. See Hunt Map on web page.

When will the entry gate and check station open for hunt days?
The entry gate and check station will typically open at least two hours before shoot time to allow time for hunters to check in, drive/walk to open ponds/levees, set up any decoys, etc. A guest may accompany a hunter and must also check in.

What time does the check station close on hunt days?
The entry gate and check station will close approximately one hour after shoot time. Please plan your hunt to allow time to collect your gear, make it back to parking areas and load up to drive back to the check station within an hour of the end of shoot time.

Can I use a boat or a dog for hunting purposes?
Yes. Small watercraft are recommended and are best to use to access the ponds. A gas motor is allowed, although caution is suggested as there are unmarked obstacles and shallow pond areas could result in propeller damage. Launching boats from levees and levee roads is permitted and it is recommended to launch and land at higher tides for best access conditions. Pond depths vary and may require boat portage over levees and berms to get to ponds further from the access levees. It may not be safe to enter the ponds and wade in for retrieval due to unmarked hazards such as ditches and channels, and because the pond bottoms are varied and unconsolidated in many areas. Dogs are allowed only for hunting purposes.

Mobility Impaired Blind: One blind in Pond 5C may be reserved for disabled/mobility-impaired hunters (maximum of 4) with appropriate ID, by special arrangement with CDFW prior to hunt dates or at check in, as available. Disabled hunters must check in with CDFW at the Veasy St. gate prior to hunting and must check out with CDFW after the hunt, as this area requires alternative access arrangements.

Closed Zones: Do not trespass or hunt in closed areas; you may retrieve downed birds provided guns are left in the legal hunting area. Closed Zones are designated because of management activities, proximity to homes or trails, access difficulties or they are not suitable habitat for waterfowl or hunting

The eastern levee of Ponds 5, 6, 6C, adjacent to Alameda County land is open to foot access but closed to hunting. The southern levee of Ponds 2 and 4 are also closed to access and hunting is prohibited (adjacent to the Alameda County diked ponding areas and marshes). Blinds and hunting within Ponds 2, 4, 5, 6 and 6C remain open, as well as other levees where CDFW property is on both sides of the levee, except as restricted as Closed Zone areas.

The bay front levee of Pond 10 is closed to access and no hunting is allowed along the levee. Hunting is prohibited along Highway 92, north of the PG&E Transmission Towers/Lines in Pond 10 and 11, along the main Bay Trail, eastern perimeter marshes and the east part of Pond 6A. Vehicle access from Veasy St. to ponds north and south of Old Alameda Creek is open only on graveled levees.

WLB 11/2014