A publication of Bureau of Land Management in California
Issue 440 - 7/15/10
THIS WEEK IN NEWS.BYTES:
- America's Great Outdoors
- American Recovery and Reinvestment Act
- Wild horses and burros
- FREE offer: Burro posters
- Not for educators only: Wildlife trivia question of the week
- Renewable energy
- Wildfires and prevention
- Headlines and highlights
- Meet your Advisory Committee members
- Selected upcoming events
Also see this issue of News.bytes online at:
|AMERICA'S GREAT OUTDOORS
"Eastern Sierra youth work with the BLM on summer public lands projects" (News.bytes Extra)
The Eastern Sierra Youth Conservation Corps has again teamed with the BLM's Bishop Field Office, working on several summer projects across the Eastern Sierra and the Owens Valley. Projects will include stabilizing historical sites, fencing off of Highway 120, upgrading campgrounds, picking up trash and working on trails and roads in the Fish Slough and Chalk Bluff areas.
"Students learn about the BLM at Bakersfield Field Office" (News.bytes Extra)
The BLM's Bakersfield Field Office recently welcomed three college students as part of Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar’s Youth Incentive program. The program is meant to engage, educate and employ youth. The Bakersfield Field Office will put the students through a variety of training and other experiences over a period of eight weeks.
"BLM acquires land to improve public recreation opportunities near Sacramento River" (BLM news release, 7/8/10)
The Bureau of Land Management has acquired 275 acres near the Sacramento River that will improve public access to recreation areas and trails north of Redding. The three parcels between Keswick and Shasta dams will enable the BLM to complete six miles of new trail. A new three- mile loop from the Walker Mine Road Trailhead and a three-mile trail to Moccasin Creek will cross the newly-acquired land.
"Summer slumber" (Yuma Sun, 7/11/10)
Photo slide show: "When the temperatures begin to soar, the Imperial Sand Dunes aren't such a popular place to play. And before you know it the only tracks found on the miles and miles of wind-swept, sun-bleached, drifting sand are those of the creatures that live there year-round. "
"One small step for good government" (Redding Record Searchlight, 7/13/10)
Editorial page editor's column: "Hey, this won't make a noticeable dent in the trillion-dollar deficit, but Rep. Wally Herger alerts the world that his HR 689 has passed both houses of Congress ... The measure is a land swap that would consolidate the management of the Chappie-Shasta OHV park under the Bureau of Land Management's, um, management, while shifting some 5,000 acres in the Trinity Alps Wilderness to the jurisdiction of the Forest Service."
RELATED: "Shasta-Trinity National Forest Administrative Jurisdiction Transfer Act - Bill Summary & Status - H.R.689" (The Library of Congress/Thomas)
Links to text of legislation, the bill's history and more.
RELATED: "Chappie-Shasta Off-Highway Vehicle Area" (BLM Redding Field Office)
Just 10 miles northwest of Redding, the Chappie-Shasta Off-Highway area offers 200 miles of roads and trails over 52,000 acres for off-road enthusiasts. Elevation within this area ranges from 600 to 5000 feet with a wide variety of topography, soil, and vegetation types.
|ARRA - BLM FUNDS UNDER THE AMERICAN RECOVERY AND REINVESTMENT ACT OF 2009
The project below was funded with part of approximately $40 million in ARRA funds appropriated to BLM-California.
|"ARRA funds improve recreation, habitat at National Monument" (News.bytes Extra)
Road improvements on the Carrizo Plain National Monument in Central California will provide better public access to popular recreation areas while preserving natural resources. The $150,000 project was funded through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. A crew of six to 10 workers from a firm based in San Luis Obispo County spent about three weeks grading and graveling roads, including Selby Road and Soda Lake Overlook.
"Ribbon cut for reopening of Amboy Crater public access road" (News.bytes Extra)
A ribbon-cutting marked the official re-opening of the public access road to Amboy Crater National Natural Landmark. “This completed ARRA project provides the public with a smooth all-season paved road and replaces the former largely un-maintained gravel road,” said Raymond “Rusty” Lee, BLM Needles Field Office Manager.
|WILD HORSES AND BURROS
"Mustang deaths raise outcry against federal roundup" (Sacramento Bee, 7/13/10)
"Wild horse advocates are calling on the Obama administration to halt plans to round up thousands of horses and burros in California and other states in coming weeks, saying the deaths of at least seven mustangs gathered by helicopter in Nevada on Saturday prove the practice is inhumane in the summertime."
"BLM will lead public tour in Twin Peaks Herd Management Area" (BLM news release, 7/9/10)
The Bureau of Land Management will lead a public tour through part of the Twin Peaks Herd Management Area in northeast California on Friday, July 23. Those interested in participating must provide their own four-wheel-drive vehicles suitable for rocky terrain, lunches and water. This is the second tour to provide opportunities for people to learn more about the landscape and land uses in Twin Peaks HMA.
"12 horses now dead from Nev. roundup; hearing set" (Associated Press in San Francisco Chronicle, 7/15/10)
"Twelve wild horses have now died in a Nevada roundup directed by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management, half of them colts and mares ... The BLM blames the fatal outcome on drought conditions that have weakened the animals, and said aerial surveys showed two large bands of mustangs. One group of about 400 horses congregated around a dry reservoir and made no attempt to move to other water sources. 'BLM considers this an emergency situation,' Ron Wenker, BLM state director, said in a statement."
RELATED: "BLM takes emergency ations to provide water to wild horses" (BLM Nevada news release, 7/14/10)
"Due to escalating drought conditions, the Bureau of Land Management has implemented emergency actions to provide water to wild horses within the Tuscarora gather area" in Nevada. " The BLM cannot sustain this level of support to provide water to the animals over the long-term because of the limited road access and the poor condition of roads in this area. This drought condition scenario was considered and analyzed by the BLM in the environmental assessment prepared for the gather."
"Wild horses and burros available for adoption in Lakeside, CA" (BLM news release, 7/8/10)
This weekend: There are 30 young animals available for adoption at the Pillsbury Ranch in Lakeside, Calif., on July 17-18. The 25 wild horses and ten burros were gathered from public lands in California and Nevada. They have been wormed and vaccinated, and are in excellent health. Potential adopters may view the mustangs and burros from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. Friday.
RELATED: "Radio announcements: BLM wild horse and burro adoption event July 17-18 in Lakeside, CA" (BLM California)
"My horse is a wild mustang . I looked in his eyes and I knew he was my horse...." Hear from an adopter. and plan on attending the Wild Horse and Burro Adoption at Pillsbury Ranch in Lakeview this weekend, July 17 - 18. For more information see the news release above or call 866-4MUSTANGS. The following is a 30-second .mp3 file:
"BLM issues new policy handbook on wild horse and burro management" (BLM national news release, 7/14/10)
Among other things, the handbook would ensure that the factors considered in determining appropriate herd population levels are consistent across all of the Bureau's 179 herd management areas in 10 Western states.
NOT for EDUCATORS ONLY:
|WILDLIFE TRIVIA QUESTION of the WEEK:
To where do California leaf-nosed bats migrate in the cold months?
(a.) The Mojave Desert
(c.) South America
(d.) The Florida Keys
(e.) The Antarctic
(f.) They do not "leave"
------> See answer near the end of this issue of News.bytes.
"California utilities struggle to meet renewable-power requirement" (Los Angeles Times, 7/10/10)
"State law requires the Golden State's three large investor-owned utilities to procure 20% of their retail electricity sales from clean sources by the end of 2010. But with less than six months left to meet that requirement, even government watchdogs don't expect the power companies to make it."
"County to ask for compensation policy for renewable energy projects" (Imperial Valley Press, 7/12/10)
The San Bernardino County Board of Supervisors "may pass a resolution ... asking state and federal agencies require project developers to provide compensation for taking land off property tax rolls to alleviate wildlife impacts," and another to ask that if any renewable energy projects take over public lands with uses such as off-highway vehicle recreation, mining or grazing, that the BLM and other federal agencies provide other land for the same purposes, or require developers to.
"Solar Millennium project on hold" (Ridgecrest Daily Independent, 7/9/10)
"Solar Millennium, LLC ... announced ... that it has voluntarily suspended its application for a solar power plant project near Ridgecrest pending completion of further studies related to potential impacts of the project on the Mojave ground squirrel ... Solar Millennium sent a letter to the Bureau of Land Management and California Energy Commission making the official request to put the application of the Ridgecrest Solar Power Project on hold."
"Canadian company proposes wind farm project along Walker Ridge" (Lake County News, 7/13/10)
"In the midst of the push for increased used of renewable energy sources, a Canadian company is proposing to build a wind farm along Walker Ridge in Lake and Colusa counties ... Rich Burns of the Ukiah BLM field office ... said a notice of intent on the project is expected to be published in the Federal Register within the next few weeks. That will kick off the public process for developing an environmental impact statement, which will evaluate the wind farm's plan of development ...."
"Sunrise Powerlink approved on Cleveland National Forest land" (San Diego Union-Tribune, 7/13/10)
"More than five years after first proposing a big power line linking San Diego to the Imperial Valley, San Diego Gas & Electric Co. ... is getting the news it has been waiting for -- the last big roadblock to construction of the $1.9 billion Sunrise Powerlink is gone. The Cleveland National Forest is approving construction and operation of the 1,000-megawatt line on 19 miles of forest land." The forest supervisor "decided that an earlier joint review by the California Public Utilities Commission and the Bureau of Land Management was sufficient."
RELATED: "Powerlink approved by Forest Service; Opponents vow to file lawsuit" (East County Magazine, 7/13/10)
Opponents say they are disappointed but not surprised, and began preparing for a lawsuit more than a year ago. The power line was proposed to carry renewable energy from the Imperial Valley.
RELATED: "Our Opinion: Powerlink approval a plus for county" (Imperial Valley Press, 7/14/10)
Editorial: "The end of the major hurdles stalling the construction of the Sunrise Powerlink line between Imperial and San Diego counties appears to be over, and that is something all Imperial Valley residents should be thankful for ... Getting the renewable energy industry up and operating is imperative in bringing Imperial County out of this economic depression we’re in."
"Renewable energy fast track projects" (BLM California)
BLM-California is working to diversify the nation’s energy portfolio through the “fast-track” development of wind, solar, and transmission siting on BLM-managed public lands within the state.
|WILDFIRES AND PREVENTION
"Wildfire scorches 175 acres" (Redding Record-Searchlight, 7/12/10)
"Last week’s lightning likely caused a 175-acre wildfire that burned Monday near Fall River Mills, firefighters said ... The fire burned through juniper, grass and sage in terrain defined by lava rock ... The fire burned in the Lava Wilderness Study Area southeast of Fall River Mills ... The Lava Wilderness Study Area is managed by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management, but the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection fights fire there, said Jeff Fontana, BLM spokesman in Susanville."
"Firefighters save buildings in Kelso Valley blaze" (BLM news release, 7/12/10)
An outbuilding was destroyed but three other buildings were saved in eastern Kern County, thanks to prompt actions by firefighters last week. Bureau of Land Management firefighters responded to a report of a grass fire in Kelso Valley, off Kelso Creek Road and Highway 178. Approximately 60 firefighters responded to the 10-acre fire. The BLM was assisted by Kern County Fire Department and the U.S. Forest Service.
"Fire restrictions begin July 15 on BLM-managed public lands" (BLM news release, 7/14/10)
Seasonal restrictions on campfires and target shooting go into effect Thursday, July 15, for public lands managed by the U. S. Bureau of Land Management Arcata Field Office in Humboldt, Mendocino and Trinity counties. The restrictions will be in effect until cooler, wetter weather reduces fire risk.
|HEADLINES and HIGHLIGHTS
"The lasting impact of mercury mining" (Santa Rosa Press Democrat, 7/10/10)
"Would California be a better place today if gold had not been discovered in the foothills of its boundary mountains 162 years ago? There are historians who think so. They believe our settlement would have been slower, more deliberate and less chaotic ... but there is other fallout that isn't so sweeping, with continuing malevolent effects. What comes up frequently in this area -- what, in fact, has Bureau of Land Management officials hard at work right now -- concerns a byproduct of gold processing, a silver-white metallic substance called mercury."
"Humboldt Bay's South Spit dubbed for Thompson: North Coast representative honored for work to improve area" (Eureka Times-Standard, 7/10/10)
"The popular stretch of beach, dunes and marsh is now officially known as the Mike Thompson Wildlife Area South Spit Humboldt Bay. In a ceremony on the bluff overlooking the spit, representatives of the U.S. Bureau of Land Management, the California Department of Fish and Game, county supervisors and others reviewed the history of the area donated to the state by the old Pacific Lumber Co."
"Temporary closure set for part of Bizz Johnson Trail" (BLM news release, 7/8/10)
A short stretch of the Bizz Johnson National Recreational Trail west of Susanville will be closed from Tuesday, July 19, through Thursday, July 22, while sandblasting is underway on a trestle restoration project in the Devil’s Corral area.
"Marijuana training overflights lead to eradication" (The Willits News, 7/9/10)
"An estimated 139,000 marijuana plants were removed from Bureau of Land Management Lands and unauthorized grows on private land last week ... Training flights for other agencies conducting marijuana spotting over flights identified nearly 200 different marijuana grows."
RELATED: "Mendocino County marijuana raids net 85,393 plants, no arrests" (Santa Rosa Press Democrat, 7/13/10)
"Narcotics agents seized 85,393 marijuana plants and two firearms during weeklong raids across Mendocino County, authorities reported. Officers with the County Of Mendocino Marijuana Eradication Team searched corporate timber properties, federal bureau of land management areas and private properties during the raids that began July 5...."
"Our Opinion: New laws should be easily followed" (Imperial Valley Press, 7/10/10)
Editorial: "If you’re a desert enthusiast or a frequenter of our local sand dunes, the Bureau of Land Management has a new set of rules you should take note of when planning your next trip ...
These laws are pretty commonsense and should be easy to follow."
"Bighorn sheep deserve protection" (Palm Springs Desert Sun, 7/15/10)
Editorial: "The Desert Sun sympathizes with the dog lovers. It's natural to want your best friends to roam free on our glorious collection of trails. But the magnificent sheep in our mountains are part of what makes this valley special. Cities should provide trails for dog walkers, but the sheep is endangered and needs protection."
"Current job openings - BLM California" (USAJOBS website)
Listings include geodetic technician, contact representative, fire logistics dispatcher, and several for which lists of candidates are being prepared.
|MEET YOUR ADVISORY COMMITTEE MEMBERS: Robert Pavlik...
...is a senior environmental planner with the California Department of Transportation and has been active in various volunteer and professional capacities that relate to the management of the Carrizo Plain for over 25 years. He represents the public-at-large on the Carrizo Plain National Monument Advisory Committee.
|SELECTED UPCOMING EVENTS
Unless otherwise noted, find more details -- and more events -- online at:
July 17 - Hike to Discover King Range Coast's cultural history
Call for location and to sign up
July 24 - King Range "Rising moon setting sun" hike
Call for location and to sign up
|WILDLIFE TRIVIA answer and related websites
(f.) They do not "leave"
SOURCE: "California Leaf-nosed Bat - Macrotus californicus" (BLM California wildlife database)
They do not migrate during the cold months so they depend on the caves, mines, and buildings to protect them from the cold environment. The bats may roost alone or ...
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News.bytes published by
Bureau of Land Management
California State Office
2800 Cottage Way, Suite W-1834
Sacramento, Ca 95825
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