A publication of Bureau of Land Management in California

Issue 143 - 2/4/04
William RadtkeyWhere is this? Online photo quizRon HuntsingerEnjoying spring flowers in the Red Hillssketch of riffle sculpin
- Not For Educators Only:
     - Wildlife Trivia Question of the Week: Sculpin evidence
     - Where is This? (interactive photo quiz)
- Photo Album: "The Red Hills"
- Meet your Advisory Council members: William Radtkey
- Profile: Ron Huntsinger - new Field Office manager
- Bookstore Feature: "Location and Patenting of Mining Claims and Mill Sites"
- Cemex gravel lawsuit settlement
- National and/or Department of Interior news
- Headlines and Highlights, including:
     - Shooters look for range to call home
     - Wild Horse and Burro Adoption: Burbank
     - Cows and rare species
     - Archaeologist "unearths new perspective"
     - $5.6 million lawsuit filed in dunes case


Wildlife Trivia Question mark graphicWILDLIFE TRIVIA QUESTION OF THE WEEK: Sculpin evidence
What is unique about sculpins?
(a) They are the smallest fish found in California;
(b) They have two extra fins to help them build nests in the gravel;
(c) They have few or no scales on their bodies;
(d) They are only found in water that is very cold.
(See answer near the end of this issue of News.bytes)

Where is this? Online photo quizWHERE IS THIS?
1. Pahrump Valley Wilderness Area
2. Coso Range Wilderness Area
3. Sylvania Mountains Wilderness Area
Take your best guess and check your answer against other readers, in our interactive photo quiz:

Enjoying spring flowers in the Red HillsPHOTO ALBUM: "The Red Hills"
The Red Hills is a region of 7,100 acres of public land just south of the historic town of Chinese Camp in Tuolumne County. The natural serpentine in the area limits plants to species that are tolerant of such minerals. Included among the buckbrush and gray pine is a rich diversity of annual wildflowers that put on a showy display every spring. The endangered bald eagle is a winter resident of the area.

Related: "Red Hills Area of Critical Environmental Concern" (BLM California Web site)
This area is managed by BLM California's Folsom Field Office. It includes a trail system with various loops, for a total of about 17.3 miles.

Related: "More about the Red Hills ACEC" (BLM California Web site)

Northwest California Advisory Council member William Radtkey is a retired wildlife biologist and represents the public-at-large on the council. During his 32-year career he has worked on endangered species issues including 8 years with the BLM and 12 years working with national level conservation groups.

Ron HuntsingerPROFILE: Ron Huntsinger
Ron Huntsinger will be the new field office manager for BLM's Bakersfield office. Currently, he is the field manager for the Taos, New Mexico office - but he is not a stranger to California. Read more in this week's News.bytes Profile:

Related: "Huntsinger named as BLM's Bakersfield manager" (BLM California news release, 02/03/2004)
In Bakersfield, Ron Huntsinger will oversee a field office staff of about 100. The office is responsible for natural resource management on over 600,000 acres of public lands in Madera, Fresno, Kings, Tulare, Kern, San Luis Obispo, Ventura and Santa Barbara counties, including the Carrizo Plain National Monument and portions of the California Coastal National Monument. He will report to his new position in early March.

BOOKSTORE FEATURE: "Location and Patenting of Mining Claims and Mill Sites"BOOKSTORE FEATURE: "Location and Patenting of Mining Claims and Mill Sites"
Latest Edition - Updated 2000 - This book explains how to locate and patent mining claims in California. It shows locations, monuments and claim maps. This book is written by the Bureau of Land Management.


"Supervisors vote to settle Cemex lawsuit" (Antelope Valley Press, 2/4/2004)
"County supervisors narrowly voted Tuesday to settle a lawsuit filed by mining company Cemex, a decision that could clear the way for a 460-acre sand and gravel mine in Soledad Canyon." Settlement is not final until other parties agree, and will not be made public until filed with U.S. District Court in about two weeks. The company won a competitive bid for the mining rights from BLM in 1989.

"Cemex, supes settle mining suit" (The Santa Clarita Signal, 2/4/2004)

"Cemex lawsuit settled" (Los Angeles Daily News, 2/3/2004)
"City will fight plan for mine on BLM land.",1413,200%257E20949%257E1933345,00.html

"Mining lawsuit settled" (Los Angeles Times, 2/4/2004),1,7557521.story?coll=la-editions-valley


"BLM proposes $1.7 billion for FY 2005 budget to enhance multiple-Use management through conservation partnerships" (BLM National Office news release, 2/2/2004)
To promote conservation partnerships that enhance its multiple-use management of the public lands, the Interior Department’s Bureau of Land Management (BLM) today proposed a Fiscal Year 2005 budget of $1.7 billion.

"President Bush's FY2005 budget will continue positive environmental progress" (Department of the Interior news release, 02/03/2004)
President Bush submitted a 2005 environmental budget today that includes the highest level of funding ever requested by a President for high-priority environment and natural resource programs. "President Bush's budget is focused on achieving results to conserve our natural and cultural resources, serve communities, improve recreational opportunities and promote partnered problem solving," Interior Secretary Gale Norton said.

"BLM, Public Lands Council Sign Agreement to Promote Cooperative Monitoring of Rangeland Conditions" (Department of the Interior news release, 1/30/04)


"Shooters look for range to call home" (Redding Record-Searchlight, 02/02/2004)
"Walker Mine Road resident says noise, traffic of gun club unsuitable for area."

"Biologists find cows make good company with some rare critters" (Associated Press in San Jose Mercury News, 2/4/2004)
"Fairy shrimp, the rare tiger salamander, the solitary bee - rare critters that live in seasonal rainwater pools in California's grasslands - may actually benefit from having large, heavy-footed cattle grazing around their habitat." Report from Cosumnes River Preserve south of Sacramento, jointly managed by Bureau of Land Management and partners.

"Unearthing new perspective" (Bakersfield Californian, 02/01/2004)
"California desert archeology is a somewhat thankless undertaking....nothing...will turn up that will create a media frenzy. Yet recent discoveries in this sunken, arid land near Ridgecrest may push back by thousands of years when scientists say people settled southeastern California. In March, an archeological team contracted by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management will formally present its Searles Lake findings...."

Related: "Archaeologist draws crowd at museum talk" (Ridgecrest News Review, 01/28/2004)
"An overflow crowd packed the Maturango Museum recently to hear local about the abundant evidence of early man the Terese Site in the El Paso Mountains, the ancient peaks lining the southern end of the Indian Wells Valley. There wasn't an empty seat in the house, and even standing room was at a premium....[he] ended his talk with a plea to desert boondockers. 'Please tread or drive lightly because there are sites everywhere,' he said. 'Report everything you find to...the Bureau of Land Management.'

"$5.6 million lawsuit filed in dunes case" (Imperial Valley Press, 01/29/2004)
"Attorneys for a 19-year-old Encinitas man filed a claim Wednesday seeking $5.6 million in damages from two U.S. Bureau of Land Management rangers, Sheriff Harold Carter and Imperial County." Plaintiff alleges that two BLM rangers "abused their power and used excessive force on him, resulting in spinal cord injuries, during an encounter in Glamis on Nov. 2."

"Adopt-A-Horse or Burro Program Returns to Burbank" (BLM California news release, 1/15/2004)
Approximately 80 Mustang yearlings, geldings and mares and 20 burros will be offered to qualified adopters February 7-8 (preview Feb. 6).

"Official says 'no surprises' still stands" (Riverside Press-Enterprise, 1/30/04)
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service official advises "regional offices to continue issuing permits for habitat conservation plans and providing so-called 'no surprise' assurances to developers that once they comply with a plan, they won't face further building restriction or fees even if new species are listed or more habitat is required to protect a species." BLM is one of many partners in these desert habitat plans.

Related: "Fires took species' habitat" (Riverside Press-Enterprise, 2/4/2004)
"Thousands of acres of habitat for three species...already clinging to existence in Inland foothills and mountain streams were destroyed by wildfires, according to a study released Tuesday by an...environmental group." The group and others disagree whether area habitat plans allow for this loss.

Answer: (c) - Sculpins have few or no scales, and most species have prickles in at least one area on their bodies.
sketch of riffle sculpinThe riffle sculpin has prickles located behind the pectoral fins, which are the fins on the side of the fish. Learn more about the riffle sculpin in our BLM California online wildlife database (Note: the Wildlife Database is hosted on the Department of Interior's secure Web server - see note under "Selected Upcoming Events" below):

WILDLIFE POSTSCRIPT: A feature story on our News.bytes "Wildlife Trivia of the Week" question from News.bytes, issue 140 from January 14:
"Pocket mice have unique traits" (Palm Springs Desert Sun, 2/1/2004)
"Pocket mice are one of the most common groups of rodents found in the Coachella Valley. There are four species that live on the valley floor and, as a group, they occupy every type of habitat from sand dunes to alluvial fans."

"News.bytes, issue 140 - 1/14/2004)" (BLM California Web site)
See the "Wildlife Trivia Answer" for more about the Long-tailed pocket mouse:

(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.)

02/05/2004 - Northwest California Advisory Council meeting

02/05/2004 - Modoc-Washoe Stewardship Committee meeting

02/06/2004 - Preview: Wild Horse and Burro Adoption

02/07/2004 - Wild Horse and Burro Adoption

02/07/2004 - Desert Hikes - North Algodones Dunes
El Centro

02/07/2004 - Geology Talks at the Santa Rosa & San Jacinto National Monument
Palm Desert

02/07/2004 - Santa Rosa and San Jacinto Mountains National Monument Advisory Committee meeting
Palm Desert

02/07/2004 - Cache Creek Free Guided Hikes

02/14/2004 - Cache Creek Free Guided Hikes

02/21/2004 - Geology Talks at the Santa Rosa & San Jacinto National Monument
Palm Desert

02/21/2004 - Cache Creek Free Guided Hikes

02/23/2004 - Nature Hike to Stone Pools at the Santa Rosa & San Jacinto Mountains National Monument

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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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