News.bytes
News.bytes
A publication of
Bureau of Land Management in California


Issue date: 1/10/2003
- updated

This week in News.bytes:


- BLM finishing desert plans: reactions
     -
Northern and Eastern Mojave Desert: Record of Decision
     - West Mojave Plan
- Not for Educators Only:
     - Weed of the Week: Canadian thistle
     - Bookstore feature is back - Finding gold!
     - Wildlife Trivia: shrewed food
- Wildlife on public lands:
     - Bald eagle hikes
     - Wet dry lake
     - Lizard not officially threatened
- California/federal resources issues:
     - A planning success: balancing forest use
     
- Differing state, federal land priorities?
     - Citizen advisory committees
- National land use issues, including:
     - New rule on local vs. federal road disputes
     - California Rep. to head Resources Committee
     - Report on public lands' oil, gas
- Wildfire prevention continues:
     - Rural Fire Assistance Program
     - Burning debris along fire breaks
     - Fire rehab project
- Off the road
- Headlines and Highlights, including:
     - New Eagle Lake Field Office manager
     - Motorcycle riders falls down mine shaft
     - Mine opposition
     - Quarry opposition
     - Wilderness on film

Also see this issue of News.bytes online at:
http://www.ca.blm.gov/news/newsbytes/2003/90.html

PLEASE NOTE: News.bytes was delayed until Friday this week due to technical difficulties. We plan to return to an earlier-in-the-week schedule with the next issue.

BLM COMPLETING DESERT LAND USE PLANS

"REPORT TO FOCUS ON HABITAT CONSERVATION" (San Bernardino County Sun, 01/07/2003)
"Twenty-nine local, state and federal agencies and special interest groups are preparing the West Mojave Plan, which is intended to conserve more than 100 endangered and sensitive species threatened by urban encroachment." San Bernardino County' land use services department public meeting is Jan. 16.
http://www.sbsun.com/Stories/0,1413,208%257E12588%257E1095071,00.html

"WEST MOJAVE CALENDAR" (BLM California Web site)
Related: West Mojave Plan public meetings, Jan. 9, Jan. 10, Jan. 16.
http://www.ca.blm.gov/cdd/wemo_calendar.html

"DESERT LAND USE PLAN BLASTED" (Victorville Daily Press, 12/27/2002)
"In a decision soundly criticized by county officials, environmentalists and ranchers, [the BLM] has approved a land use plan outlining conservation strategies to manage sensitive species -- including the endangered desert tortoise-- and habitats on public land administered by the BLM. The Northern and Eastern Mojave Plan, or NEMO, covers 2.7 million acres in San Bernardino, Inyo and Mono counties."
http://www.vvdailypress.com/cgi-bin/newspro/viewnews.cgi?newsid1041008447,32659,

Related: "NEMO PLAN: Record of Decision, proposed plan, final EIS"
http://www.ca.blm.gov/news/pdfs/nemo2002/


NOT FOR EDUCATORS ONLY

Weed of the Week - Canadian thistleWEED OF THE WEEK - Canadian thistle
Inhabits well-drained, light-textured soils along roadsides, in wildlands, grain fields and pastures. It becomes established most easily in disturbed soils and is very difficult to control once it has become established.
http://www.ca.blm.gov/bishop/canadathistle.html

Wildlife Trivia question markWILDLIFE TRIVIA: How much food do shrews have to consume each day in order to stay alive?
(See answer near the end of this issue of News.bytes)

"PALEONTOLOGISTS TRACK DOWN DINOSAURS IN THE DESERT" (San Bernardino County Sun, 12/28/2002)
Paleontologists and volunteers preserve "fossil tracks of dinosaurs that roamed the once-humid Mojave Desert up to 70 million years ago." Casts for display prepared at Desert Discovery Center, sponsored by organizations including BLM California.
http://www.sbsun.com/Stories/0,1413,208%257E12588%257E1078217,00.html

Bookstore feature: Where to Find Gold in California
BOOKSTORE FEATURE IS BACK
- This week: Finding Gold!

(...as well as platinum ... rare earths ... exotic metals.) With maps, directions and more!
http://store.ca.blm.gov/cgi-bin/webc.exe/st_prod.html?p_prodid=1405&p_catid=58


WILDLIFE ON CALIFORNIA'S PUBLIC LANDS

Great Egret - photo courtesy Gerald And Buff Corsi CA Academy Of Sciences"EX-MARSH HAS WET FUTURE; Harper Dry Lake will receive water" (Los Angeles Daily News, 01/03/2003)
"Harper Dry Lake, a desolate and dusty desert expanse that looks like a moonscape, will be going from dry to wet this year. With help from nonprofit group Friends of Harper Lake, the [BLM] plans to pump water into the lake bed this spring to create a marsh-like desert oasis" that will allow bird- and wildlife-watching.
http://www.dailynews.com/Stories/0,1413,200%257E20943%257E1088220,00.html

"DRY LAKE TO BE WET AGAIN" (Barstow Desert Dispatch, 01/02/2003)
"Desolate and barren, Harper Dry Lake resembles the surface of a different planet, with its rippled, white soil. But this spring, the dry lake near Hinkley will change. With help from the nonprofit Friends of Harper Lake, the [BLM] plans to pump water into the dry area to create a marsh-like desert oasis"
http://www.desertdispatch.com/cgi-bin/newspro/viewnews.cgi?newsid1041530853,98637,

Related: "WATCHABLE WILDLIFE SITE: Harper Lake" (BLM California Web site)
http://www.ca.blm.gov/caso/wf-harper.html

"BLM TO LEAD FREE GUIDED BALD EAGLE OBSERVATION HIKES" (BLM California news release, 01/08/2003)
Outdoor enthusiasts have the opportunity to view bald eagles in their winter habitat along Cache Creek, when the BLM leads a series of free, guided hikes during the next seven weeks.
http://www.ca.blm.gov/news/2003/01/nr/NCnews26_eaglehikes_jan30/Conv.htm

"TORTOISE COULD BE DOOMED" (Los Angeles Daily News, 01/05/2003)
"The federal government has spent more than $100 million over the past 13 years to protect the desert tortoise from extinction, but there's no evidence the money and effort have done any good" despite buying land for sanctuaries and restricting land use.
http://www.dailynews.com/Stories/0,1413,200%257E20943%257E1091291,00.html

"FEDS: LOCAL LIZARD THREATENED, BUT WON'T GO ON LIST" (Palm Springs Desert Sun, 01/06/2003)
Flat Tailed Horned Lizard photo courtesy Lloyd Ullberg Calif Academy Of Sciences"In September, the environmental community was trying to convince the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to designate the flat-tailed horned lizard as a threatened species .... The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced on Friday it would not consider the lizard threatened." Found on BLM-managed lands in southern California and Arizona.
http://www.thedesertsun.com/news/stories/local/1041825326.shtml

Related: "REPTILE'S FALL FROM GRACE DEEMED 'CRUEL JOKE'" (Imperial Valley Press, 01/05/2003)
http://www.ivpressonline.com/archives/index.inn?loc=detail&doc=/2003/January/05-385-news02.txt

Related: "LEAPIN' LIZARD: LOCAL CRITTER BOOTED FROM THREATENED SPECIES LIST" (Yuma Sun, 01/04/2003)
http://yumasun.com/artman/publish/articles/story_3410.shtml

 

CALIFORNIA/FEDERAL LAND USE PLANNING

"STRIKING A BALANCE IN THE FOREST" (Los Angeles Times, 01/06/2003)
"Environmentalists, U.S. officials and loggers fashion a plan for a small piece of the Sierra. Still, some warn of pitfalls to local efforts." "Revolutionary" planning effort brings together locals including loggers, a Pulitzer Prize-winning poet, and BLM California's Folsom Field Office manager.
http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-inimim6jan06.story

"A WIDENING FISSURE BETWEEN STATE, FEDS" (Los Angeles Times, 12/26/2002)
"On pollution, forests, deserts, species and offshore oil, the political contrasts are stark .... When it comes to placing a value on the environment, California has rarely seemed so far from Washington, D.C."
http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-enviro26dec26.story

"HABITAT CONVERSION PERMIT DISCUSSION MAY KILL TWO LAND BUYS" (Chico Enterprise-Record, 01/08/2003)
"Butte County plans to require a permit when agricultural land is converted to habitat have stalled purchase of 271 acres of farmland by the Nature Conservancy." Supervisors cite loss of tax revenue and effects on neighboring property owners. Agencies have been buying land along Sacramento River for 15 years.
http://chicoer.com/articles/2003/01/08/news/news3.txt

"SECRETARY OF THE INTERIOR APPOINTS CARRIZO NATIONAL MONUMENT ADVISORY COMMITTEE" (BLM California news release, 01/06/2003)
The Carrizo Plain National Monument has an advisory committee of local citizens in place to advise the Bureau of Land Management on the future of the monument. Secretary of the Interior Gale Norton made the appointments in Washington on December 30th.
http://www.ca.blm.gov/news/2003/01/nr/CCnews10_CarrizoAppts/Conv.htm

"MODOC-WASHOE STEWARDSHIP COMMMITTEE MEETS JANUARY 16-17" (BLM California news release, 01/06/2003)
A panel featuring charter members of the Modoc-Washoe Experimental Stewardship Program will present viewpoints on the successes and future of the organization, when the committee meets Jan. 16 and 17 in Cedarville.
http://www.ca.blm.gov/news/2003/01/nr/NCnews24_espmeeting_jan16and17/Conv.htm

"ABANDONED ORDNANCE CONFRONTED IN JAN. 15 MEETING" (Needles Desert Star, 1/10/03)
"How much and what sort of military ordnance is laying about in the vicinity of what was once Camp Ibis, and what might be done about it, will be discussed."
http://news.mywebpal.com/news_tool_v2.cfm?pnpid=638&show=localnews&newsid=417027

Related: "CAMP IBIS ENGINEEERING EVALUATION/COST ASSESSMENT" (BLM California Web site)
Public comments due Feb. 6 on a preliminary “Finding of No Significant Impact” (FONSI) and Environmental Assessment (EA) for a proposed Engineering Evaluation/Cost Analysis (EE/CA) of former Camp Ibis.
http://www.ca.blm.gov/needles/Ibisnepa.html

BLM RELEASES DECISION RECORD FOR LOCAL MINING PROJECT" (Ridgecrest Daily Independent, 1/10/03)
Finding of No Significant Impact and Decision Record for the proposed Cecil R. Jackson mineral exploration project by the CR Briggs Company in the Panamint Mountains.
http://www.ridgecrestca.com/articles/2003/01/09/news/local_news/news03.txt

Related: "CECIL R. JACKSON EXPLORATION EA" (BLM California Web page)
http://www.ca.blm.gov/ridgecrest/cecil_r._jackson_exploration_e.html


PUBLIC LANDS - NATIONAL ISSUES

"BLM ISSUES FINAL RULE ON CONVEYANCES, DISCLAIMERS AND CORRECTION DOCUMENTS" (BLM national news release, 12/24/2003)
The BLM issued a final rule that will allow any entity claiming title to lands or an interest in lands to apply for a "recordable disclaimer of interest." A recordable disclaimer of interest is an official determination that the United States neither owns nor holds a valid interest in certain lands.
http://www.blm.gov/nhp/news/releases/pages/2002/pr021224_disclaimer.htm

Related: "INTERIOR DEPT. EASES CURBS ON FEDERAL RIGHTS OF WAY" (Washington Post, 01/07/2003)
"The Interior Department issued rules to make it easier for western states and local governments to claim rights of way on hundreds of millions of acres of federal lands, including areas now off-limits to roads, mining and other commercial activity." Officials say rule will stop costly litigation of conflicts between federal, state and local governments.
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A19482-2003Jan6.html

Related: "BUSH OPENS UP BACKCOUNTRY TRAILS TO VEHICLES" (Seattle Post-Intelligencer, 01/01/2003)
"The Bush administration, in a move that has outraged environmentalists, is about to hand a big victory to Westerners who want to use a post-Civil War-era law to punch dirt-bike trails and roads into the backcountry."
http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/local/102348_roads01.shtml

"LAWMAKERS WILL BATTLE INTERIOR OVER FUNDS" (Sacramento Bee, 01/09/2003)
California congressional delegation angered by "precedent-setting decision" to take $139 million payment to farmers for improper irrigation drainage, from Department of Interior projects in California. "The delegation said the money should be taken out of a Justice Department account set up to pay for court judgments, not by cutting funding already set aside for other programs."
http://www.sacbee.com/content/news/environment/story/5839486p-6805901c.html

"REP. POMBO WINS RESOURCES CHAIR" (Sacramento Bee, 01/09/2003)
"Tracy Republican Richard Pombo won a hard-fought battle late Wednesday to oversee Western parks, forests and water, becoming chairman of the House Resources Committee." Committee oversees many issue affecting public lands.
http://www.sacbee.com/content/news/environment/story/5839488p-6805895c.html

"REPORT ON PUBLIC LANDS' OIL, GAS MAY SPUR DRILLING FIGHT" (Salt Lake Tribune, 01/06/2003)
""The war over drilling in the West could get noisier this month when federal land management agencies are expected to release an inventory of oil and gas resources on public lands." Agencies say report will help in weighing all options. Conservation groups say report requested by energy companies will be used to open up sensitive areas to development.
http://www.sltrib.com/2003/Jan/01062003/nation_w/17731.asp


WILDFIRE PREVENTION

"RURAL FIRE ASSISTANCE PROGRAM APPLICATION" (BLM California Web site)
Rural and volunteer fire departments that routinely help fight fire on or near BLM- or other Department of the Interior-managed lands may submit an application for BLM's 2003 Rural Fire Assistance Program. The goal of the program is to enhance the wildland fire protection capabilties of rural fire departments through training, equipment purchase, and iprevention work on a cost-share basis. Applications are being accepted through February 7, 2003.
Minimum eligibility requirements are explained in the application package, available online. (PDF file, 120 kilobytes):
http://www.ca.blm.gov/news/pdfs/2003other/03_RFA_application_packet.pdf

"BLM TO BEGIN BURNING DEBRIS PILES ALONG FUEL BREAKS" (BLM California news release, 01/08/2003)
Fire crews from the BLM and California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (CDF) will begin burning piles of brush and limbs cut during construction of shaded fuel breaks west of Redding.
http://www.ca.blm.gov/news/2003/01/nr/NCnews25_slashpiles_redding_jan03/Conv.htm

"WHAT WILL HAPPEN TO ALL THOSE BURNED LANDS IN WALKER AND COLEVILLE? BLM FIRE REHABILITATION PROJECT UPDATE" (BLM California news release, 01/08/2003)
One wildfire after another ripped through northernmost Mono County last summer, destroying and threatening human lives and property. Thousands of wild animals also lost their homes - 27,000 acres of wildlife habitat, more than half of which was critical winter range for the West Walker mule deer herd. Who rebuilds for them?
http://www.ca.blm.gov/news/2003/01/nr/CCnews11_BishopRehab/Conv.htm


OFF-ROAD

"ROCK CRAWLERS TAKE ON GRAVITY" (San Bernardino County Sun, 1/4/03)
California Rock-Crawling and Off-Road Championship Series' "Put up or shut up' competition at BLM California's Johnson Valley Off-Highway Vehicle Area.
http://www.sbsun.com/Stories/0,1413,208%257E12598%257E1089973,00.html

Related: "JOHNSON VALLEY OFF-HIGHWAY VEHICLE AREA" (BLM California Web site)
http://www.ca.blm.gov/barstow/johnson.html

Related: "OFF ROAD" (californiadesert.gov Web site)
BLM California off-road areas in the desert, and some of the rules.
http://www.californiadesert.gov/Rules/OffRoad/content.html


HEADLINES AND HIGHLIGHTS

"DAYNE BARRON NAMED MANAGER FOR BLM EAGLE LAKE FIELD OFFICE" (BLM California news release, 01/06/2003)
Dayne Barron, a Bureau of Land Management resource specialist with experience in the field and at agency headquarters, has been named manager of the BLM Eagle Lake Field Office in Susanville.
http://www.ca.blm.gov/news/2003/01/nr/NCnews23_barron_appointment_an03/Conv.htm

BLM California surveyor in some rugged terrain"BLM TO UPDATE MANUAL OF INSTRUCTIONS FOR SURVEY OF THE PUBLIC LANDS OF THE UNITED STATES" (BLM California news release, 01/03/2002)
The agency is developing the latest edition of the Manual of Instructions for the Survey of the Public Lands of the United States . The Manual describes how cadastral surveys of the public lands are completed in conformance to statutory law.
http://www.blm.gov/nhp/news/releases/pages/2003/pr030103_survey.htm

Related: "BRANCH OF GEOGRAPHIC SERVICES" (BLM California Web site)
BLM California Web pages, including information on the Cadastral Survey for the general public and more technical information for professional surveyors.
http://www.ca.blm.gov/cadastral/

"NEW TACK FOR MINE OPPONENTS" (Los Angeles Daily News, 12/23/2002)
Santa Clarita City officials hope a Court of Appeals ruling on coastal drilling, will help them in federal court battle over a Cemex, Inc. planned sand-and-gravel mine in Soledad Canyon.
http://www.dailynews.com/Stories/0,1413,200%257E20949%257E1070072,00.html

"LAND DEAL FOR QUARRY FINDS EARLY OPPOSITION" (Redding Record-Searchlight, 01/06/2003)
Developer proposes swap of private land with BLM California, saying it would reduce impacts on area residents; one resident voices immediate opposition.
http://redding.com/top_stories/local/20030106toplo017.shtml

"14-YEAR-OLD SURVIVES PLUNGE DOWN 25-FOOT MINE SHAFT" (Bakersfield Californian, 01/04/2003)
Boy cresting hill when he saw unprotected mine shaft, tried to brake. "His bike skidded to the side but [he] rolled over the handlebars and fell into the shaft, falling 25 feet before landing on corrugated tin, rocks and wooden two-by-fours."
http://www.bakersfield.com/local/story/2412875p-2462962c.html

Related: "MOTORCYCLE RIDER ESCAPES SERIOUS INJURY AFTER TUMBLE DOWN MINE SHAFT" (Ridgecrest Daily Independent, 01/06/2003)
http://www.ridgecrestca.com/articles/2003/01/05/news/local_news/news02.txt

"CITY FOLLOWS IMPROVEMENT PATH" (Palm Springs Desert Sun, 12/27/2002)
"The La Quinta trails could be an alternative to mountain trails the [BLM] will rope off in January as endangered peninsular bighorn sheep begin lambing season."
http://www.thedesertsun.com/news/stories/local/1041133344.shtml

"PATH OF DISCOVERY: Eric Brower's wilderness trips are captured on film." (Fresno Bee, 01/05/2003)
Former BLM surveyor -- paralyzed in a recreational climbing accident -- exhibits wilderness and outdoor photos.
http://www.fresnobee.com/lifestyle/story/5803533p-6771900c.html


A shrew-mole is NOT a shrewWildlife Trivia question markWILDLIFE TRIVIA ANSWER to: "How much food do shrews have to consume each day in order to stay alive?"
Shrews have such a high metabolism that they have to constantly eat to stay alive. Some have to eat more than their body weight each day!
A shrew-mole is not a shrew, but a mole. Learn more it, in the BLM California Wildlife Database:
(Note: see comment on "secure Web server" under Selected Upcoming Events below.)
https://doi1.ios.doi.gov/blmcawildlife.nsf/siteurl/50738385?OpenDocument



SELECTED UPCOMING EVENTS
(PLEASE NOTE: the Upcoming Events database is now on a more secure Web server, and your browser may state "You are about to view pages over a secure connection" and ask you to "Trust a Security Certificate" from the Department of Interior that hosts this site. To view the pages, you must select "Yes" or "OK" for both questions.)

01/09/2003 - West Mojave Plan - CEQA Scoping meetings
Bakersfield
https://doi1.ios.doi.gov/blmEvents.nsf/siteurl/34558023?OpenDocument

01/10/2003 - West Mojave - CEQA scoping meeting
Ridgecrest
https://doi1.ios.doi.gov/blmEvents.nsf/siteurl/10858778?OpenDocument

01/16/2003 - Modoc-Washoe Stewardship Committee meeting
Cedarville
https://doi1.ios.doi.gov/blmEvents.nsf/siteurl/74076448?OpenDocument

01/16/2003 - West Mojave - CEQA scoping meeting
Redlands
https://doi1.ios.doi.gov/blmEvents.nsf/siteurl/65862669?OpenDocument

01/29/2003 - Northwest California Advisory Council
Arcata
https://doi1.ios.doi.gov/blmEvents.nsf/siteurl/49205768?OpenDocument

01/30/2003 - Northwest California Advisory Council
Arcata
https://doi1.ios.doi.gov/blmEvents.nsf/siteurl/85374686?OpenDocument

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News.bytes published by
Bureau of Land Management
California State Office
2800 Cottage Way, Suite W-1834
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http://www.ca.blm.gov

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