CALIFORNIA COASTAL NATIONAL MONUMENT
August 31, 2012
BLM California & National Workshops Held on Implementing National Landscape Conservation System 15-Year Strategic Plan. Workshops were held on June 18-21, 2012, in Sacramento, California, and July 23-26, 2012, in Albuquerque, New Mexico, to focus on the implementation of recently released 15-Year Strategic Plan for the National Landscape Conservation System. The Sacramento workshop focused on gathering input from the BLM California field offices on the development and implementation of BLM’s California statewide National Landscape Conservation System implementation plan, while the Albuquerque workshop focused on gathering input from the 12 BLM state offices on the implementation of the national plan. California Coastal National Monument (CCNM) Manager Rick Hanks attended both workshops.
At the Albuquerque workshop, there was a fair amount of discussion regarding the use of the term “Conservation Lands” as a short-version for “National Landscape Conservation System.” This conversation over the title “National Landscape Conservation System” has been going on for more than 10 years. There are those that think the title is too long and others that feel the use of the acronym “NLCS” is too confusing. During an evening session, Brian O’Donnell, Executive Director of the Conservation Lands Foundation, the non-profit organization established to assist the BLM with the National Landscape Conservation System, stated that from his perspective, the Conservation Lands Foundation is comfortable with the fact that the term “National Landscape Conservation System” is by law the formal name and that the use of the term “Conservation Lands” is the short form or short version for referring to the system, not a name change. Discussions throughout the workshop stressed the point that the National Landscape Conservation System is intended to showcase the BLM and all of its “conservation lands.” If that is the case, then the use of the term “Conservation Lands” as the short version for the National Landscape Conservation System that showcases all of BLM’s conservation lands is more palatable. As for the use of “NLCS” acronym, most agreed that its use should be discouraged. In its place, either the full title “National Landscape Conservation System” or the short version “Conservation Lands” should be used.
The major focus of the national workshop, as well as the primary focus of the National Landscape Conservation System portion of the state workshop, was the BLM’s national implementation strategy. Entitled “The National Landscape Conservation System 15-Year Strategy 2010-2025: The Geography of Hope,” the National Landscape Conservation System implementation strategy was completed in 2010, but full attention on its implementation was delayed until the National Landscape Conservation System manuals were released the latter part of this year. The BLM used environmentalist Wallace Stegner’s term, “the geography of hope,” because the phrase may best capture the significance of the 27 million acres that comprise the National Landscape Conservation System. As the introduction to the national strategy states, the system “encompasses some of the most scenic, culturally rich, scientifically important and least-known of all public lands in America,” but what sets them apart is more than their designation, it is “the inspiration they evoke.” The National Landscape Conservation System “turns people toward hope – hope for the present, hope for the future, hope that wild places and cultural resources and traditions will continue to exist and inspire; that they will provide open spaces and broaden our understanding, and nudge us toward renewal and refreshment.”
The BLM’s national implementation strategy for the National Landscape Conservation System is organized into four major themes with four to six goals associated with each theme and three to six actions identified for each goal. To help prioritize actions at the field level, each of the 12 BLM state offices has been directed to develop a statewide strategy for National Landscape Conservation System areas under its jurisdiction, tiered to the national strategy for the National Landscape Conservation System. The national and statewide National Landscape Conservation System strategies will in turn serve to guide the development of implementation plans and strategies associated with the individual National Landscape Conservation System, such as the California Coastal National Monument.
The four themes and associated goals of the National Landscape Conservation System implementation plan are as follows:
Theme 1 – Ensuring the conservation, protection, and restoration of National Landscape Conservation System values
Goal 1A – Clearly communicate that the conservation, protection, and restoration of National Landscape Conservation System values is the highest priority in National Landscape Conservation System planning and management, consistent with the designating legislation or presidential proclamation.
Goal 1B – Expand understanding of the National Landscape Conservation System values through assessment, inventory, and monitoring.
Goal 1C – Provide a scientific foundation for decision-making.
Goal 1D – Use the National Landscape Conservation System as an outdoor laboratory and demonstration center for new and innovative management and business processes that aid in the conservation, protection, and restoration of National Landscape Conservation System areas.
Goal 1E – Limit discretionary uses to those compatible with the conservation, protection, and restoration of the values for which National Landscape Conservation System lands were designated.
Goal 1F – Manage facilities in a manner that conserves, protects, and restores National Landscape Conservation System values.
Theme 2 – Collaboratively managing the National Landscape Conservation System as part of the larger landscape
Goal 2A – Emphasize an ecosystem-based approach to manage the National Landscape Conservation System in the context of the surrounding landscape.
Goal 2B – Adopt a cross-jurisdictional, community-based approach to landscape-level conservation planning and management.
Goal 2C – Work with Congress, tribes, other federal and state agencies, and national and local communities to identify and protect lands that are critical to the long-term ecological sustainability of the landscape.
Goal 2D – Adopt a community-based approach to recreation and visitor services delivery, consistent with the conservation purposes of the National Landscape Conservation System and the socio-economic goals of the local community.
Theme 3 – Raising awareness of the value and benefits of the BLM’s National Landscape Conservation System
Goal 3A – Launch a long-term public awareness initiative about the BLM’s National Landscape Conservation System, including national and local outreach, communication, and media plans.
Goal 3B – Advance and strengthen partnerships to facilitate shared stewardship and to advance the relevance of the NLCS to communities of interest and place.
Goal 3C – Expand use of volunteers within the National Landscape Conservation System.
Goal 3D – Engage the public in stewardship of the National Landscape Conservation System through education and interpretation.
Goal 3E – Recruit and retain well-trained youth from diverse backgrounds for entry-level careers, and engage youth in recreation, education, and stewardship on conservation lands.
Theme 4 – Building Upon BLM’s commitment to conservation
Goal 4A – Improve internal communication and understanding of the National Landscape Conservation System and its potential to enhance the BLM as a whole.
Goal 4B – Cultivate shared responsibility for the NLCS conservation mandate as an integral part of the BLM’s multiple-use, sustained-yield mission.
Goal 4C – Clearly define, understand, and justify staffing needs, and administratively organize the National Landscape Conservation System areas to operate as a cross-cutting program within the BLM.
Goal 4D – Ensure the National Landscape Conservation System budget is coordinated with the other BLM programs. Set clear expectations and procedures for interdisciplinary budget development, priority setting, and reporting of accomplishments.
The themes and goals are very consistent with the aspects and major focus of the California Coastal National Monument, as outlined in the CCNM Resource Management Plan (2005). The CCNM aspects (and major focus) are preservation (management focus), landscape (ecological focus), partnerships (collaborative focus), and communities (local focus).
[See CCNM Resource Management Plan on the CCNM website at: www.blm.gov/ca/ccnm]
Ashy Storm-Petrels Found Nesting on CCNM Rocks Off Mendocino Coast. Seabird biologists surveying CCNM rocks and small islands along the California north coast discovered several active nesting sites of the Ashy Storm-Petrel, a fairly rare nocturnal, cavity nesting seabird. This is a significant discovery because this declining seabird, which is currently being considered for listing under the federal Endangered Species Act, has not been reported nesting along this part of the coast since 1926. Four colonies where discovered along the Mendocino County coast north of the city of Point Arena and south of the village of Mendocino. Two of the locations are on Wharf Rock and Casket Rock off of the community of Elk (the original CCNM “poster child”).
The research is funded by the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation's Pacific Seabird Program, a Pacific-wide conservation initiative established in 2011 for which Ashy Storm-Petrel serves as one of 10 priority species. The research team is being led by Harry Carter, one of the world's top experts on the species, and includes seabird experts Mike Parker and Josh Koepke. Carter said that the team climbed 20 rocks but only found four confirmed sites, one on a historic colony site that was believed to have been empty for years and three on new sites. These sites may contain 100 or more breeding individuals and it is likely that additional breeding birds are also breed in nearby inaccessible locations. This is significant given the small global population, which the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service estimates may be as few as 5,500 birds.
In an article in the Ukiah Daily Journal, Carter was stated as saying that, "This [discovery] shows that Ashy Storm-Petrels still persist in the northern part of their range, and at more sites than had been known." He added that, "It may increase the bird's resiliency to known threats in other areas such as oil spills, light pollution, predation by invasive predators, and more. It also means we have a responsibility to protect and monitor these sites with their own unique breeding conditions and conservation issues."
The seabird survey is continuing north, searching the rocks north toward Fort Bragg. The survey involves the team going up to the rocks in an inflatable boat and free climbing the rocks carrying only with flashlights. "Searching for Ashy Storm-Petrels on these rocks is tough and dangerous work, and we are grateful to these biologists for shining light on an elusive species that is a high conservation priority for many state and federal agencies and conservation groups," said Audubon California seabird conservation manager Anna Weinstein. "And, the state's new suite of marine protected areas will help to support food resources for Ashy Storm-Petrels provisioning their young at these sites."
Trinidad Rancheria & BLM Arcata Field Office Initiate Seabird Protection Network Project within Trinidad Complex. With some funding from the CCNM, the BLM Arcata Field Office has taken the lead on the collaborative project with the Trinidad Rancheria (a CCNM Steward) to implement the seabird protection strategy developed for Green Rock and Flatiron Rock north of Trinidad, California. This involves the BLM and the Trinidad Rancheria working in close collaboration with other CCNM partners in the development of a North Coast chapter of the Seabird Protection Network (SPN) within the Trinidad Complex. The Trinidad Complex involves seabird sites from the mouth of Little River to the south of Trinidad to Big Lagoon to the north.
The Seabird Protection Network is based on a three-pronged approach design that consists of monitoring, outreach, and enforcement and coordinated management. This season, the testing techniques on the monitoring of human disturbance and breeding seabird behavior were conducted at Little River (Camel) Rock at the southern end of the Trinidad Complex. Data gathered from the season will aid in the development of outreach materials. In addition, there have been many meetings with stakeholder groups, including the CCNM Trinidad Gateway Committee, regarding coordinated management of the Seabird Protection Network project within the Trinidad Complex. The CCNM Trinidad Gateway will play a key role in the outreach portion of this project. This summer’s work found that the development of a successful chapter of the Seabird Protection Network on the North Coast will require more time, a reliable funding source, and more efforts in coordinated management with stakeholder groups.
The Seabird Protection Network project for the Trinidad Complex is an outcome of the Special Closure Sub-Committee related to the North Coast Marine Life Protection Areas (MLPA) Initiative. As part of the North Coast MLPA initiative, both CCNM’s Green Rock and Flatiron Rock were proposed for consideration as “Special Closures.” These Special Closures would have involved a 300’ closure around both rocks. Green Rock and Flatiron Rock contain the CCNM’s most significant seabird colonies, including the largest common murre nesting colonies in California outside of the Farallones National Wildlife Refuge. There was, however, concern from two of the CCNM Stewards, the Trinidad Rancheria and the Yurok Tribe, regarding Green Rock and Flatiron Rock. As an alternative, the BLM, through the CCNM, and two CCNM Stewards (i.e., Trinidad Rancheria and Yurok Tribe) proposed a different option other than Special Closures.
The goal of the Seabird Protection Network is to address human disturbance to breeding seabird colonies and enhance the recovery of seabird populations damaged by oil or other contaminant spills along the central and southern California coastlines. There are two chapters established, the Point Reyes-Point Sur chapter is based out of NOAA’s Gulf of the Farallones National Marine Sanctuary office in San Francisco, California. The Point Sur-Point Mugu chapter is currently based out of the BLM Hollister Field Office. To enhance conservation efforts the development of a North Coast chapter of the Seabird Protection Network within the Trinidad Complex is underway, based out of the BLM Arcata Field Office in collaboration with the Trinidad Rancheria.
Cypress Abbey Phase 1 Dedication at Point Arena. A crowd of nearly 200 joined officials from the Trust for Public Land (TPL) and the BLM on Friday, June 1, 2012, to celebrate the acquisition of the Cypress Abbey Phase 1 property. Once open to only a select few, the rolling coastal prairies and dramatic ocean views at the southern portion of the Cypress Abbey Ranch near Point Arena, California, are now accessible to the public following acquisition and transfer of the land to public ownership and management by the Bureau of Land Management’s Ukiah Field Office. The achievement is the first phase of a planned three-phase acquisition that will eventually open about 500 acres of stunning scenic landscapes to the public.
The TPL, BLM, and the California Coastal Conservancy played key roles in the acquisition of the 127 acres of undeveloped coastal property involved in this first phase. TPL project managers Dave Sutton and Markley Bavinger coordinated the acquisition and transfer of the property to the BLM. The property, located within the northwestern portion of the Point Arena city limits, represents Phase 1 of the acquisition plan. The property was acquired using funding from the BLM through the federal Land and Water Conservation Fund, and the California State Coastal Conservancy. The next step is working on the acquisition of the 420 acres of the Phase 2 parcel that would connect the Phase 1 parcel with the Stornetta Public Lands. The Phase 2 acquisition would allow coastal trails to link the Stornetta Public Lands with the City of Point Arena and would provide excellent opportunities to view features of the California Coastal National Monument.
Opening the ceremony, Sam Hodder, Trust for Public Land California State Director, told the crowd about the importance of protecting the landscape and its various resources for future generations. He also talked about how TPL acquired the property and turned it over to the BLM for management. In his comments to the group, BLM California State Director Jim Kenna spoke of the “remarkable natural and historic values,” of the site, describing the property as “a chance to feel the California coast and develop a passion that you will carry with you for your entire life.” He affirmed the BLM’s commitment to the “partnership, shared values, and joy in creating a heritage that will benefit generations to come.” He assured the group that the BLM is committed to protecting and sustaining the Cypress Abbey property and commended the work of the BLM’s partners in leading the way for the acquisition.
Also during the ceremony, statements of support from U. S. Senator Dianne Feinstein and U. S. Representative Mike Thompson were read by congressional staffers. The various speakers stated appreciation for the critical funding provided by the California Coastal Conservancy and the BLM, through the Land and Water Conservation Fund. In addition to comments regarding the stunning scenic value of the property, mention was also made to the importance of the acquisition for the protection of critical habitat for the Behren’s silverspot butterfly and the Point Arena mountain beaver, both of which are on the federal endangered species list.
After a lunch on the property, the attendees took a walking tour and were provided the opportunity to visit at least four stations with specific information regarding the property and its connection to a variety of resources. BLM’s CCNM manager Rick Hanks discussed the CCNM and the geology of the area; BLM Ukiah Field Office wildlife biologist Pardee Bardwell discussed the coastal prairie and area’s wildlife; BLM Ukiah Field Office archaeologist Chris Lloyd covered the cultural resource values; and California Native Plant Society local representative Laurie Hubbard addressed the vegetation.
[See a few select photos of the event and the area in “Celebration Marks Public Access to Cypress Abbey Lands,” in the BLM California News.bytes at www.blm.gov/ca/news/newsbytes, Issue 534, 06/06/2012]
Work is continuing on completing the acquisition of the second phase involving about 400 acres and a third phase to acquire two smaller parcels. When completed, the Cypress Abbey property will connect to the BLM’s Stornetta Public Lands, providing a public land connection stretching from the community of Point Arena north to the Point Arena Lighthouse and Manchester State Beach. The property also adjoins the California Coastal National Monument and it was acknowledged during the ceremony that Congressman Thompson had recently introduced H.R. 4969, a bill to place the Stornetta Public Lands and any additions (e.g., the Cypress Abbey acquisitions) into the California Coastal National Monument, as the first onshore portion of the Monument.
[See “Thompson Introduces Bill to Add Stornetta Public Lands to CCNM,” CCNM Update April 31, 2012, at www.blm.gov/ca/ccnm]
CCNM Photos Featured in DOI’s America’s Great Outdoors Website. The California Coastal National Monument was featured in the U.S. Department of the Interior’s (DOI) America’s Great Outdoor website and Facebook. On the Facebook page, a CCNM photo by Bob Wick, BLM California’s Natural Conservation System co-coordinator, was among nine selected for an America’s Great Outdoors public land photo contest. The photo of Camel Rock (a.k.a. Little River Rock) located south of Trinidad, California, was accompanied by the following caption:
California Coastal National Monument, Calif. Located off the 1,100 miles of California coastline, the California Coastal National Monument comprises more than 20,000 small islands, rocks, exposed reefs, and pinnacles between Mexico and Oregon. Its scenic qualities and critical habitat of this public resource are protected as part of the BLM’s National Landscape Conservation System. Establishing and supporting a series of 12 “CCNM Gateways”— sections of the California coast that serve as focal points and visitor contact locations for the national monument— has proven to be a very effective way of involving California’s coastal communities in the management and protection of their local coastal resources and helping with the enhancement of the local economy and geotourism. The small gateway community of Trinidad, shown here, has always been dependent on its coastal resources and the rocks and islands of the California Coastal National Monument. Before Euro-[A]merican settlement, the inhabitants of the Yurok village of Tsurai fished and collected from the rocks, small islands and seastacks — each offshore rock has a Yurok name. Today, Trinidad is a tourist community. Visitors come to view the spectacular coastal scenery, walk its windswept beaches, and view some of California’s largest seabird colonies on the offshore rocks and islands of the CA Coastal National Monument.
Two CCNM photos by Bob Wick were featured on the DOI’s America Great Outdoor website. The first had the paragraph caption above and the second used the first two sentences and then added:
Even though California coastline is one of the most popular scenic routes in the world, the offshore features will remain pristine and wild for future generations because of its special protection national monument. These rugged outposts provide a haven for animals and plants that are sensitive to human disturbance.
In addition, as part of President Obama declaring June 2012 as National Oceans Month, the DOI added an America’s Great Outdoors photo gallery highlighting just a few of America’s “best beaches” that are found on Interior lands, including the California Coastal National Monument. This was done to help the “millions of travelers plan[ning] their summer vacations.” The America’s Great Outdoors website states that:
These lands include 85 marine and coastal parklands, 180 marine and coastal wildlife refuges, and 1,100 miles of the California coast administered by Interior agencies. In addition to beautiful scenery, these areas help local tourist economies. In 2010, coastal national park units alone contributed an estimated $3.5 billion to local economies, while refuges contributed at least $900 million.
The CCNM was also featured in the “America’s Great Outdoors Beaches” website list slide show of about two dozen DOI beaches. [See photos at America’s Great Outdoors website at http://americasgreatoutdoors.tumblr.com/]
Local “OutdoorsCool!” Public Service Announcement for CCNM Stars Trinidad Students. Four sixth grade students from Trinidad Elementary School in Trinidad, California, volunteered to star in the California Coastal National Monument public service announcement (PSA) as part of the local, multi-agency-multi-organization “OutdoorsCool!” campaign. Focusing on the CCNM Trinidad Gateway area, the students were filmed enjoying the Trinidad Museum (a CCNM Collaborative Partner), Humboldt State University Marine Laboratory (a CCNM Collaborative Partner), Trinidad State Beach (managed by California State Parks, a CCNM Core-Managing Partner), and the memorial lighthouse (maintained by the City of Trinidad, a CCNM Collaborative Partner). Videographer Jan Krapelin filmed the students looking at the exhibits at the museum, watching a lamprey eel in its tank at the marine lab, and running down the beach with CCNM rocks behind them. At the memorial lighthouse, the students were filmed walking through a door frame that, when cropped and edited, looks as if the students are walking out of a living room and into the outdoors.
The PSA is part of a larger group of PSAs that were filmed all over Humboldt County by the OutdoorsCool! campaign. The PSAs will run in local theaters and on local television from August 2012 to February 2013 (The CCNM PSA might not start until sometime in September). OutdoorsCool! campaign is designed to help kids discover the Humboldt’s great outdoors, including where to hike, bike, canoe, camp, walk your dog, and spot wildlife. The participating agencies and organizations are the BLM, National Park Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, California State Parks, Humboldt County Parks, Friends of the Arcata Marsh, Friends of the Dunes, and Sequoia Parks Zoo Foundation. The OutdoorsCool! Campaign is part of the national “Let’s Move Outside” program. Let’s Move Outside, administered by the U.S. Department of the Interior, was created to get kids and families to take advantage of American’s great outdoors, which abound in every city, town and community. This part of the larger “Let’s Move” initiative – America’s move to raise a healthier generation of kids.
[To see PSAs on the OutdoorsCool website at: http://www.outdoorscool.com; To learn more about Let’s Move, see their website at: http://www.letsmove.gov]
CCNM Trinidad Gateway Art Contest for School Students. Trinidad Elementary School (commonly referred to as “Trinidad School”) students attend classes just a step away from one of the most dramatic views of the California Coastal National Monument, so when celebrating ocean ecosystems during the month of May, a CCNM inspired art contest helped kick-off their month of ocean related activities. During this month, the entire school of approximately 180 K through 8th grade students explores different marine environments through the disciplines of earth, life and physical science. Classes take field trips, students work on special projects, and each class immerses itself in the ocean through art, music, literacy activities, community service, and in-depth science curriculum.
Seventy-three stunning pieces of artwork were submitted and judged by local artists, biologists, environmental educators, and BLM staff. Choosing artwork that represents the CCNM with the best artistic composition was difficult with so many beautiful pieces from which to choose. Fourteen were selected and displayed as part of an art show at the Trinidad Bay Watershed Council’s annual Watershed Night at the Trinidad Town Hall on the evening of May 18, 2012. First, second, and third place entries were judged according to grade category, and the following criteria was used: (1) Interpretation of the theme “Protecting the diversity of life on the Trinidad coastline and offshore rocks through community partnership” and (2) Best artistic composition. The art contest was sponsored by the CCNM Trinidad Gateway.
[See 35 of the art contest entries on the CCNM Trinidad Gateway’s website at: http://www.blm.gov/ca/st/en/fo/arcata/trinidad_gateway_to/ccnm_student_artwork.html]
Students of All Ages Get a Close-Up Look at CCNM. While the California Coastal National Monument offers magnificent scenic vistas from the mainland, getting a closer look at the rocks and islets can be a challenge. Recently, however, a variety of students were lucky enough to see the nesting seabirds and marine mammals from the ocean.
For three days, from June 11-13, 2012, a different group of a dozen 5th-8th graders from Trinidad Elementary School took rides on Shenandoah Charters boat and got a close-up look of Green and Flatiron Rocks, north of Trinidad Bay in Humboldt County, California. Green Rock and Flatiron Rock are two of the most important islets for nesting seabirds within the California Coastal National Monument. The two rocks contain the largest Common Murre colony on the entire Monument. Only about a nautical mile apart, these two islets together have more than 66,000 adult breeding seabirds nesting on them annually.
Another group of about a dozen 50 years and older life-long learning students paddled in kayaks from Trinidad Harbor to learn about the natural and cultural history of Trinidad Bay from BLM wildlife biologist Jesse Irwin and coastal kayak instructor Hawk Martin. This was a Humboldt State University (HSU) Extended Education Program’s Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI). OLLI is community of learners age 50 and over that is supported in part by the Bernard Osher Foundation. This HSU extended education summer course, entitled “Paddle Trinidad Bay,” paddled out and around Prisoner and Camel Rock. Highlights from the tour were California sea lions feasting on fish for breakfast, nesting Pigeon Guillemots, Brown Pelicans, Caspian Terns, Long-tailed ducks, Black Oystercatchers, Peregrine Falcons, breeding Western Gulls, Brandt’s Cormorants, and the friendly Harbor Seals.
Trinidad, California, is one of the several coastal cities and towns designated as a CCNM Gateway Community. Trinidad Harbor is owned and managed by the Trinidad Rancheria (a CCNM Steward) and is the perfect place for boat launching into the bay. The BLM Arcata Field Office works with local partners to protect and preserve the diversity of life on the Trinidad coastline and offshore rocks through example, education, and community cooperation.
BLM & Lost Coast Interpretive Association Hosted Free Tidepool Tour at Mal Coombs Park. The fascinating life in tidepools was featured in a free interpretive outing on Saturday morning, June 23, 2012, at Mal Coombs Park in Shelter Cove. The outing was part of a summer hikes series offered by the Bureau of Land Management and the Lost Coast Interpretive Association. The participants met at the Mal Coombs Park lighthouse by BLM’s King Range National Conservation Area interpretive specialist Rachel Sowards Thompson. Rachel also serves as the CCNM Lost Coast Gateway coordinator. Rachel led the group of 15 eager participants down to the tidepools where they prepared to get wet as they learned about the hardy forms of life that exist in tidepools. “These plants and animals can survive crashing waves and drying sun in an environment that change daily with the tides,” she said. During the outing Rachel also presented information on the BLM and the California Coastal National Monument.
CCNM & Seabird Protection Network at 7th Annual Coastal Discovery Fair. For the seventh year in a row, BLM’s California Coastal National Monument hosted an outdoor booth at the Coastal Discovery Fair, held on Saturday, July 21, 2012, at the Randolph Hearst Memorial State Beach in San Simeon located along San Luis Obispo County’s north coast. More than a dozen agencies and organizations participated in this day-long event with activities for kids at each booth.
At the BLM booth, CCNM manager Rick Hanks and his wife Julie and Andrew Breaux, BLM Hollister Field Office’s outreach and partnership coordinator, were busy all day helping more than a hundred kids color, cut, and assemble pelican headbands and dozens more make CCNM booklets which the kids adorned with rubber stamp images of rocks and islands related animal and plant life. While giving out CCNM brochures and posters, the booth staff discussed the Monument and the BLM with many of the more than 2,000 event goers.
For the second year in a row, the Seabird Protection Network Point Sur to Point Mugu Chapter had a booth at the Coastal Discovery Fair. This chapter of the Seabird Protection Network (SPN) is led by the BLM with California State Parks, one of the CCNM’s Core-Managing Partners, coordinating the outreach portion. The SPN Point Sur to Point Mugu Chapter was initiated by funding from an offshore oil spill restoration settlement and is being managed by the BLM's Hollister Field Office as part of its role related to the CCNM.
At the Seabird Protection Network booth, Cara O’Brien, the project’s outreach coordinator and an Interpretive Specialist II for the California State Parks’ San Luis Obispo Coast District, and Robyn Chase, a State Parks Interpretive Specialist I, conducted the “Seabird Olympics.” The Olympics involved a number of fun activities, including the Pelican Plunge, the Cormorant Dive, and the Oystercatcher Hammer. In addition, they gave out seabird field guides that included tips for safely viewing seabirds and provided the opportunity for youngsters to earn junior ranger badges if they swore to help protect seabirds.
Also participating at the Coastal Discovery Fair with a booth adjoining both the CCNM and the Seabird Project Network booths was the BLM’s Piedras Blancas Outstanding Natural Area booth. The fair is the annual celebration for the Coastal Discovery Center that is managed by the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary (a CCNM Collaborative Partner) in cooperation with California State Parks. The Coastal Discovery Center serves as the CCNM’s visitor contact station for its Piedras Blancas-San Simeon Gateway initiative.
[See photos of the activities at the BLM CCNM & Seabird Protection Network booths at the Coastal Discovery Fair in the BLM California News.bytes at www.blm.gov/ca/news/newsbytes, Issue 540, 07/27/2012]
CCNM & California Desert Booths Big Hit Again at San Diego Parks & Open Spaces Day. With California Coastal National Monument book marker-making on one side and the BLM’s California Desert District reptiles on the other side, the two side-by-side BLM booths were the major attraction at the fourth Annual San Diego Parks and Open Spaces Day held at Cabrillo National Monument. Sponsored by the National Park Service at Cabrillo National Monument, located on the tip of San Diego’s Point Loma, the day-long event on Saturday, June 9, 2012, highlighted “parks, natural areas, open spaces and organizations that support the use of these spaces in the San Diego area.”
The two booths had non-stop visitation by many of the more than 2,500 park visitors for the day. While dozens and dozens of kids made California Coastal National Monument book markers and created CCNM booklets with rubber stamp images related to animals and plants found on and around the CCNM’s rocks and islets, the biggest attraction of the entire event were the reptiles at the California Desert District booth.
California Desert District (CDD) public contact representative Barbara Croonquist and BLM CDD volunteer Dee Dechert were busy all day providing the public with the opportunity to handle a California kingsnake, gopher snakes, rosy boas, chuckwalla lizards, and young desert tortoises, as well as view a colorful California mountain king snake and a lyre snake. They answered numerous questions about the animals and a myriad of general BLM related topics. In addition, visitors were able to pick up brochures about renewable energy, OHV opportunities in the area, historic sites and trails, desert tortoises, wilderness, and even Wild Horses and Burros.
At the California Coastal National Monument booth, CCNM manager Rick Hanks handed out brochures and posters and discussed the California Coastal National Monument, the National Landscape Conservation System, and the BLM to a continuous flow of visitors, while Tracy Albrecht, BLM Southern California national monuments interpretive specialist, helped kids create their own CCNM book markers or booklets. All four BLM representatives agreed that it was a day well spent, not only with our partner the National Park Service, but with visitors from all over the country and the world learning about the wonders of the BLM and the CCNM.
[See photos of the activities at the BLM CCNM & CDD booths at the San Diego Parks & Open Space Day in the BLM California News.bytes at www.blm.gov/ca/news/newsbytes, Issue 535, 06/15/2012]
California Desert District Educational Team at Marine Mammal Care Center 20th Anniversary in San Pedro. After participating in the second annual Otay Valley Regional Park Day the previous day in San Diego County, the BLM’s California Desert District’s education team, consisting of CDD’s Barbara Croonquist and Jennifer Wohlgemuth and CDD volunteer Dee Dechert, travelled to Los Angeles on Sunday, June 3, 2012, to participate in the 20th anniversary of the Marine Mammal Care Center at Fort MacArthur, located at the north side of Los Angeles Harbor in San Pedro. There, the team put on their California Coastal National Monument hats to visit with about 2,000 people. Kids colored CCNM buttons, played in the table “tidepool” with plastic sea creatures, and stamped “Look Who’s Rockin” coloring sheets as the team shared their CCNM knowledge with the parents. One gentleman came to the table proudly announcing “I know who you are! You have 10,000 rocks!”
[See photos of the activities at the San Pedro Marine Mammal Center 20th Anniversary Day in the BLM California News.bytes at www.blm.gov/ca/news/newsbytes, Issue 535, 06/15/2012]
Students Participate in Ocean Day Cleanup Event at South Spit. More than 800 students came together with teachers, parents and volunteers to “take a stand in the sand,” at the annual Ocean Day cleanup event held Thursday, June 7, 2012, at the Mike Thompson Wildlife Area at the South Spit of Humboldt Bay in northern California.
Divided into teams representing their schools, the students were led by volunteers to work sites where they pulled non-native beach grass and cleaned up debris. The trip to the beach was the culmination of classroom preparation conducted by volunteers from Friends of the Dunes, who visited schools and gave presentations on the importance of conserving ocean and beach environments. A highlight of the event was the creation of a human “poster in the sand” for an aerial photograph. The final result was an eel with a memorable message - - Defend Our Sea. The U.S. Coast Guard, Air Station Group Humboldt Bay, provided the helicopter for the aerial photo.
The program was created in 1994 by the Malibu Foundation for Environmental Education and is organized California-wide by the California Coastal Commission. Locally, the event is organized by Friends of the Dunes, a community based non-profit organization, along with the BLM and assistance from the California Conservation Corps. BLM’s Arcata Field Office has the lead for the management the multi-agency Mike Thompson Wildlife Area. The other participating agencies include the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, California Department of Fish and Game, and Humboldt County.
[See photos of the Ocean Day Cleanup Event at the South Spit in the BLM California News.bytes at www.blm.gov/ca/news/newsbytes, Issue 535, 06/15/2012; Additional aerial video by local photographer Chad Johnson can be seen at http://www.friendsofthedunes.org/]
CCNM Related Meetings, Conference Calls & Events. During the time period covered by this CCNM Update (i.e., May 1, 2012 through August 31, 2012), the CCNM Manager, other CCNM staff, and the managers and staff of the BLM California State Office and coastal field offices (FO) also participated in a variety of meetings, conference calls, events, and activities, including the following:
- Meeting with Humboldt State University (HSU) students re: CCNM Trinidad Gateway curriculum development (Leisyka Parrott), Arcata, CA, May 5, 2012
- Monthly conference call with BLM National Landscape Conservation System (NLCS) Washington Office re: BLM California & BLM Nevada NLCS activities (Rick Hanks), May 7, 2012
- Presentation of pre-CCNM field trip slideshow to 180 Trinidad School students (Parrott), Trinidad, CA, May 7, 2012
- Review & judging of CCNM Trinidad Gateway art contest for Trinidad School (Chris Heppe, Dave Fuller, Jada Lindsay, Jennifer Wheeler & Julie Clark), Trinidad, CA, May 8, 2012
- Meeting with City of Pacific Grove Public Works Department re: signs for Point Piños (Hanks), Pacific Grove, CA, May 8, 2012
- Conducted CCNM tidepool field trip for 180 Trinidad School students at Patrick’s Point State Park (Parrott), Trinidad, CA, May 10, 2012
- Presentation & hands-on classroom activities at Trinidad School re: open ocean & ocean plastics for 85 5th-8th graders (Parrott), Trinidad, CA, May 11, 2012
- Meeting of Monterey Bay National Heritage Area Alliance Steering Committee (Hanks), Moss Landing, CA, May 14, 2012
- National Webinar sponsored by U.S. Department of Agriculture re: Introduction to Service First (Hanks), May 15, 2012
- Conducted CCNM & HSU Marine Laboratory field trip for 18 Trinidad School students (Parrott), Trinidad, CA, May 16, 2012
- Filming of CCNM Trinidad Gateway public service announcements (Parrott & Lindsay), Trinidad, CA, May 17, 2012
- Meeting with Jim Dion, Sustainable Tourism Program Manager, National Geographic Maps, and Sylecia Johnston, Sustainable Tourism & Ecotourism Initiative, Monterey County Business Council, et al., re: proposed geotourism project for Monterey Bay region (Hanks), Marina, CA, May 17, 2012
- Conducted water quality monitoring fieldwork with 18 Trinidad School students (Parrott, Fuller & Lindsay), Trinidad, CA, May 18, 2012
- Exhibit table at Trinidad Bay Watershed Night with CCNM information & display of winning artwork from CCNM-Trinidad Elementary School art contest (Parrott, Lindsay & Lynda Roush), Trinidad, CA, May 18, 2012
- Attended Fort Ord National Monument dedication ceremony (Hanks), Marina, CA, May 19, 2012
- Attended Monterey Bay Audubon Society reception & presentation by Audubon California re: Black Oystercatcher Study Phase 2 plans for 2012 breeding season (Hanks), Pacific Grove, CA, May 19, 2012
- Classroom presentation on Trinidad’s kelp forest to 85 5th-8th graders at Trinidad School (Parrott), Trinidad, CA, May 25, 2012
- Attended NOAA-Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary Exploration Center outside public artwork dedication ceremony (Hanks), Santa Cruz, CA, May 29, 2012
- Attended Trust for Public Lands dedication of Cypress Abbey Phase 1 acquisition (Hanks, Jim Kenna, Rich Burns & Alice Vigil), Point Arena, CA, June 1, 2012
- Meeting with Trinidad Rancheria Chief Executive Officer Jacque Hostler re: North Coast Marine Life Protection Area-Special Closure alternative document for Green Rock-Flatiron Rock & Seabird Protection Network development (Roush, Heppe, Parrott, Lindsay & Jesse Irvin), Trinidad, CA, June 1, 2012
- Meeting of CCNM Fort Bragg-Mendocino Gateway Committee (Hanks), Fort Bragg, CA, June 6, 2012
- CCNM kayaking field trip in Humboldt Bay with 14 students from Trinidad School (Parrott), Eureka, CA, June 8, 2012
- CCNM Booth at San Diego Parks & Open Space Day (Hanks & Tracy Albrecht), Point Loma, CA, June 9, 2012
- Conference call with Trinidad Rancheria & BLM Arcata Field Office re: implementation of North Coast Marine Life Protection Act (MLPA) Initiative Special Closure alternative for seabird protection on Green Rock/Flatiron Rock (Hanks, Roush, Parrott & Lindsay), June 11, 2012
- Field trip to see Trinidad portion of CCNM close-up aboard Shenandoah charter boat with 12 5th-8th grade students & a few staff of Trinidad School (Parrott, Irwin & Lindsay), Trinidad, CA, June 11, 2012
- Field trip to see Trinidad portion of CCNM close-up aboard Shenandoah charter boat with 12 5th-8th grade students & a few staff of Trinidad School (Parrott, Irwin & Lindsay), Trinidad, CA, June 12, 2012
- Field trip to see Trinidad portion of CCNM close-up aboard Shenandoah charter boat with 12 5th-8th grade students & a few staff of Trinidad School (Parrott, Irwin & Lindsay), Trinidad, CA, June 13, 2012
- Attended BLM California Recreation & National Landscape Conservation System Workshop (Hanks), Sacramento, CA, June 18-21, 2012
- Conference call with Environment for the Americas re: shorebird grant implementation (Hanks), June 25, 2012
- Conference call with Trinidad Rancheria CEO Jacque Holster re: Seabird Protection Network meeting & implementation of North Coast MLPA Initiative Special Closure alternative for seabird protection on Green Rock/Flatiron Rock (Hanks, Roush, Parrott & Lindsay), June 28, 2012
- Meeting with Torch/Platform Irene Oil Spill Trustee Council & BLM staff re: Phase 2 implementation of Seabird Protection Network Point Sur to Point Mugu (Hanks, Rick Cooper, Eric Morgan & Brian Chartier, with Jim Weigand & Peter Fonken via phone), San Luis Obispo, CA, June 29, 2012
- Meeting of CCNM Trinidad Gateway Committee (Heppe, Parrott, Lindsay, Gina Jorgenson & Jennifer Montoya), Trinidad, CA, June 29, 2012
- Monthly conference call with BLM National Landscape Conservation System (NLCS) Washington Office re: BLM California & BLM Nevada NLCS activities (Hanks), July 2, 2012
- Meeting with BLM California Deputy Director-External Affairs Doran Sanchez & Associate Deputy Director-Natural Resources Cindy Staszak re: proposed California Coastal Collaborative draft white paper, MOU & statement of agreement (Hanks), Sacramento, CA, July 5, 2012
- Meeting with Mendocino Study Club CCNM representative Ruth Sparks & Congressman Thompson staffer Heidi Dickerson re: Fort Bragg Salmon Feed, CCNM booth & new bookmarks (Burns), July 7, 2012
- Conference call with USDI Bureau of Ocean Energy Management MARINe (Multi-Agency Rocky Intertidal Network) program manager Mary Elaine Helix & The Sea Ranch Association (TSRA) CCNM Stewardship Task Force co-chairs Diane Hichwa & Barbara Rice re: possible TSRA involvement in conducting annual MARINe monitoring at The Sea Ranch site (Hanks & Weigand), July 9, 2012
- Conference call with BLM California coastal field offices re: California Coastal Collaborative proposal (Hanks, Staszak, Cooper, Heppe, Angie Lara, Greg Thomsen, John Skibinski, Mark Conley, Bob Wick & Cathi Bailey), July 9, 2012
- Conference call with Seabird Protection Network Point Sur to Point Mugu Project Coordinators California State Parks Interpretive Specialist Cara O’Brien & PRBO Conservation Science Senior Seabird Biologist Dan Robinette re: Phase 2 outreach strategy (Hanks, Morgan, Mike Westphal & Josh Hammari), July 13, 2012
- Conference call with BLM Arcata Field Office re: Green Rock/Flatiron Rock seabird protection project (Hanks, Roush, Heppe, Parrott & Lindsay), July 17, 2012
- Meeting with Redwood Region Audubon Society re: CCNM National Public Lands Day events coordination (Parrott & Lindsay), July 17, 2012
- CCNM booth at Coastal Discovery Fair (Hanks & Andrew Breaux), San Simeon, CA, July 21, 2012
- Attended opening ceremony for NOAA-Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary Exploration Center (Breaux & George Hill), Santa Cruz, CA, July 23, 2012
- Attended BLM National Landscape Conservation System Workshop re: implementation of 15-year strategy (Hanks, Conley & Wick), Albuquerque, NM, July 24-26, 2012
- Conference call with BLM Washington Office re: implementation of new nation-wide federal Pathways program for student hiring (Hanks, Conley & Bailey), August 2, 2012
- Kayak field trip of CCNM in Trinidad Bay for HSU extended education program’s Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (Parrott & Irwin), Trinidad, CA, August 4, 2012
- Exhibit at Humboldt County Fair of CCNM Trinidad Gateway & highlighting upcoming CCNM National Public Lands Day in Trinidad (Parrott, Fuller, Lindsay, Jorgenson & Clara Sander), Ferndale, CA, August 15-26, 2012
- Meeting with HSU education student Hannah Stutzman re: place-based curriculum development for CCNM Trinidad Gateway (Parrott), Arcata, CA, August 22, 2012
- Exhibit booth with Redwood Region Audubon Society at HSU volunteer fair highlighting upcoming CCNM Public Lands Day event (Parrott), Arcata, CA, August 29, 2012