A publication of Bureau of Land Management in California

Issue 128 - 10/1/03

This week in News.bytes:

BLM volunteer hands photo to child astride an adopted mustangMEET YOUR ADVISORY COUNCIL: Wes FinleyHikers in the King RangeProfile: Jennifer WheelerAdvisory Council members help build trail
- Not for Educators Only:
    - Wildlife trivia of the Week: Fishier
    - Where is this?
    - Photo Album: King Range National Conservation Area
- Bookstore Feature: Placer Gold Deposits of the Sierra Nevada
- Wild horse and burro adoptions
- Meet your Advisory Council: Wes Finley
- Advisory Councils meet, work in the field
- Profile: Jennifer Wheeler
- Wild horse and burro events: This weekend, last weekend
- National, Department of Interior news:
    - California groups win two of 15 national awards
    - New policy could open land to oil use
    - Firefighting GIS
- Headlines and Highlights, including:
    - OHV fee reprieve
    - Piedras Blancas Light Station exhibit
    - BLM sale for oil, gas leases
    - Quail aplenty at season opener
    - Share your thoughts


Wildlife Trivia question mark of the weekWILDLIFE TRIVIA QUESTION OF THE WEEK: Fishier
What distinction does the Pacific lamprey have in California?
(See answer near the end of this week's issue of News.bytes)

WHERE IS THIS? - WildernessWHERE IS THIS? - Wilderness
1. Dead Mountains Wilderness Area
2. Funeral Mountains Wilderness Area
3. Orocopia Mountains Wilderness Area
Check your answer against other readers, at:

Photo Album: "King Range National Conservation Area" - mountain meets the seaPHOTO ALBUM: King Range National Conservation Area
National Conservation Areas (NCAs) are designated by Congress to conserve, protect, enhance, and manage public land areas for the benefit and enjoyment of present and future generations.  NCAs feature exceptional natural, recreational, cultural, wildlife, aquatic, archaeological, paleontological, historical, educational, and/or scientific resources. (Note: Please allow a minute or so while the program searches the database and brings up the first of about 12 pages of photos in this week's selection.)

Related: "King Range National Conservation Area" (BLM California Web site)
Hikers in the King RangeEstablished 33 years ago this month, the King Range covers 60,000 acres and extends along 35 miles of coastline between the mouth of the Mattole River and Sinkyone Wilderness State Park. Mountains seem to thrust straight out of the surf; a precipitous rise unsurpassed on the continental U.S. coastline. King Peak, the highest point at 4,087 feet, is only three miles from the ocean. Here the landscape was too rugged for highway building, forcing State Highway 1 and U.S. 101 inland. The remote region is known as California's Lost Coast, and is only accessed by a few back roads.

MEET YOUR ADVISORY COUNCIL: Wes FinleyWes Finley represents the wild horse and burro interests on the Northeast California Resource Advisory Council. Wes has adopted five wild horses and is a BLM volunteer, checking on adopted horses and burros to ensure their health and safety before title is turned over to the adopter. Read more about Wes in our "Meet Your Advisory Council" weekly feature.

Related: "Advisory Council members help build trail" (News.bytes Extra, 10/1/2003)
Advisory Council members help build trailMembers of BLM's Northeast California Resource Advisory Council met in the field Saturday, Sept. 27 to help build a hiking trail at the north shore of Eagle Lake, north of Susanville. It was the second year that the RAC has worked on the trail that serves local residents and visitors. On Saturday, the group built a trail segment that will eventually link with the trail the group started two years ago.

Related: "BLM Citizen Advisory Council meets Oct. 8-9 in Arcata" (BLM California news release, 09/30/2003)
Members of the BLM's Northwest California Resource Advisory Council will discuss natural resource issues including livestock grazing and wind energy development, when they convene for a field tour and meeting Wednesday and Thursday, Oct. 8 and 9 in Arcata

Profile: Jennifer Wheeler Profile: Jennifer Wheeler
Jennifer is the botanist/range conservationist/invasive weed specialist for the Arcata field office. But being a scientist was not her original plan. Read more about Jennifer in our online Profile.

WILD HORSE AND BURRO EVENTS - Last weekend, this weekend

BLM volunteer hands photo to child astride an adopted mustang"BLM wild horses and burros at Whiskeytown celebration on Sunday, Sept. 28" (BLM California News.bytes "extra")
Dozens of children had photos taken astride an adopted mustang, part of the BLM's wild horse and burro exhibit at Whiskeytown Dam and Recreation Area near Redding. The event commemorated the 40th anniversary of President John F. Kennedy's dedication of the dam and recreational lake, run by the Bureau of Reclamation and National Park Service. The 1963 dedication event was the President's last visit to California.

"Wild burros offered for adoption in Orland" (BLM California news release, 9/11/03)
BLM will offer 12 burros this Saturday, Oct. 4 - during the third annual "Longears Cele-bray-tion," a show and competition event for donkey owners.

"Wild horses and burros up for adoption in Woodside" (BLM California news release, 9/5/03)
At this event Saturday and Sunday, the BLM will offer approximately 80 wild horses and 20 wild burros for public for adoption. The majority of the wild horses are from the Carter Reservoir herd management area along the California-Nevada border east of Cedarville, Calif. These wild horses are known for their size, conformation, and color.

BOOKSTORE FEATURE: "Placer Gold Deposits of the Sierra Nevada"BOOKSTORE FEATURE: "Placer Gold Deposits of the Sierra Nevada"
This book compiles data from the mineral resource surveys throughout the century for the Mother Lode Gold Country into a concise, convenient edition that concentrates on gold placer, hydraulic, and drift mines. It also includes other gold-producing counties of the southern and northern Sierra Nevada range. More than 20 county maps are included.


"New Bush administration policy could open land to oil, gas development" (Associated Press in San Francisco Chronicle, 09/29/2003)
"New guidelines issued Monday by the Bush administration could allow oil and gas companies and off-road vehicles on federal lands that had been off-limits to protect their natural qualities. The policy directives were sent to BLM state offices to implement an agreement Interior Secretary Gale Norton struck with Utah Gov. Mike Leavitt in April to resolve a lawsuit the state filed against the department."

"Take Pride in America and Presidential Awards presented to outstanding volunteers"
Chico junior high-schoolers and a Van Nuys Boy Scout Troop were given national awards last week by Secretary of the Interior Gale Norton. Norton gave the awards to 15 individuals and groups whom she named as model volunteers under the Take Pride in America campaign, which encourages citizen stewardship of public lands and resources.

"BLM Announces Hardrock Mining Awards winners" (BLM national news release, 10/1/2003)
Bureau of Land Management Director Kathleen Clarke today announced the inaugural winners of the 2003 Hardrock Mining awards, including Vulcan Materials Company’s Morongo Project in California. The awards recognize environmentally sound mineral development operations on public and private lands and acknowledge successful partnering efforts in helping ensure a safe and productive hardrock mining industry. The company's reclamation of a sand and gravel operation used revegetation techniques for native habitat restoration that went beyond state and Federal requirements.

"Secretary Norton provides training grants to the International Association of Fire Chiefs" (Department of Interior news release, 9/25/2003)
"Our agreement will enhance the ability of local fire departments to operate safely and in concert with state and federal agencies to combat forest and rangeland fires across the country," said Department of the Interior Gale Norton. "We must strive to create a seamless operation, so when the bell rings and the engines roll, the color of the fire engine will not matter."

"GAO weighs in on firefighting GIS" (Government Computer News, 09/25/2003)
"Agencies that fight wildfires on public lands suffer from many common incompatibilities among data and systems that could hamper firefighting efforts, according to a new report from the General Accounting Office." The GAO recommended the U.S. Departments of Agriculture and Interior's firefighting agencies (including BLM) work toward compatible geographic information systems (GIS) for wildland fire management.


"Off-roaders get reprieve from fees" (Victorville Daily Press, 10/01/2003)
"Fees scheduled to take effect today for off-roaders on 300,000 acres of public land have been put on hold indefinitely while the Bureau of Land Management weighs the need and impacts of fee-for-use programs. The more than 430,000 visitors each year to Dumont Dunes, Johnson Valley, Stoddard Valley, El Mirage and Rasor Off Highway Vehicle areas could pay as much as $20 weekly, or $60 for an annual pass.",98999,

Piedras Blancas Light Station exhibit
The Bureau of Land Management and the National Geographic Theater at Hearst CastleŽ announce the opening of a display of historical Piedras Blancas Light Station photos, maps, blueprints and drawings illustrating the Station's rich history. The exhibit will be displayed in the lobby of the National Geographic Theater beginning October 1, 2003 through December 31, 2003.

"BLM offers free noise checks for motorcycles and ATVs" (BLM California news release, 09/25/2003)
The fall OHV riding season will soon be underway in northern California, and to help riders prepare, the BLM offers free noise and registration compliance checks for motorcycles and all-terrain vehicles - Saturday and Sunday, Oct. 18 and 19, from 8 a.m. to noon at the Westside Staging Area of the South Cow Mountain OHV Recreation Area, eight miles east of Ukiah.

"El Centro Field Office wilderness projects" (BLM California Web site)
Example of volunteer opportunities: "Fitness level: Good. Be prepared for physical activity such as moving heavy rocks, removing garbage and raking. There is a hike associated with this project Sunday, December 7." Some of the projects are already filled.

"Oil and Gas Lease Sale results; BLM seeks public input for next sale" (BLM California news release, 9/29/2003)
The BLM announced a statewide oil and gas lease sale earlier this month netted $109,000 in bonus bids and resulted in 27 parcels covering 13,193 acres being leased. BLM is also seeking suggestions from the oil and gas industry and other interested parties on what parcels of federally owned minerals in California should be offered for lease early in 2004.

"Quail aplenty as season opener nears" (Lake County Record-Bee, 09/30/2003)
"The early quail season for Marin, Napa, Solano, Sonoma, Lake and Mendocino counties [got]under way [last] Saturday and prospects are better than they have been in years. The wet spring resulted in an excellent hatch and the Mendocino National Forest and Bureau of Land Management lands in Lake and Mendocino counties offer excellent hunting opportunities. Actually, these are the only counties that have public land open for hunting.",1413,255%257E26902%257E1652747,00.html

"Share your thoughts" (Mammoth Times, 09/25/2003)
"The Central Sierra Resource Conservation and Development Council will be conducting a series of community forums to identify local resource concerns and opportunities. Organizations and individuals are encouraged to attend the forums and be heard on projects to improve their community." BLM is one among many organizations that have been asked to participate. "The CSRC&D is a non-profit organization funded by the US Department of Agriculture though the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS). The mission of the CSRC&D is to provide economic and natural resource conservation assistance to communities..."

Wildlife Trivia question mark of the weekWILDLIFE TRIVIA OF THE WEEK - ANSWER
Question: "What distinction does the Pacific lamprey have in California?"
Answer: Pacific lampreys are the largest lampreys in California - they grow up to two feet long.
Pacific lampreyLampreys are descendants of primitive fish that lived for millions of years - whose only survivors found today, are hagfishes and lampreys. Lampreys are lacking many of the features that true fishes have, such as bones, scales, and paired fins. Their skeleton is formed completely from cartilage, and their bodies are eel-like and slimy. Learn more about the Pacific lamprey online, in our BLM California wildlife database. (Note: the Wildlife Database is hosted on the Department of Interior's secure Web server - see note under "Selected Upcoming Events" below.)

(Note: the Upcoming Events database is on a 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.)

10/03/2003 - Central California Advisory Council

10/03/2003 - Carrizo Plains National Monument Advisory Committee

10/05/2003 - Rails to Trails Festival
Festival canceled for 2003 - but mountain bike rides and trail walks still scheduled for Sunday, Oct. 5

10/04/2003 - Santa Rosa and San Jacinto Mountains National Monument Advisory Committee meeting
Palm Desert

10/04/2003 - Woodside Wild Horse and Burro Adoption

10/04/2003 - Burro adoption at "Longears Cele-bray-tion"

10/04/2003 - Native American baskets and Pinenut necklaces
Horsetown-Clear Creek Preserve

10/08/2003 - Northwest California Advisory Council

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News.bytes published by
Bureau of Land Management
California State Office
2800 Cottage Way, Suite W-1834
Sacramento, Ca 95825
(916) 978-4600

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