A publication of Bureau of Land Management in California

Issue 196 - 2/22/05

Carol Anne Wiley Geyer's milkvetch John Bogacki Bushy-tailed woodrat in the wild Bookstore feature: "A Complete Guide to Ticks"

- Wildlife: tule elk, feral dogs, wildlife restoration
- Headlines and highlights, including: Wilderness bill, Burro Schmidt tunnel, BLM California job openings
- Land use planning: Mariposa County, Eastern Sierra
- Wild horse and burro adoptions
- Off-season fire prevention projects
- Meet your advisory council members: Carol Anne Wiley
- Profile: John Bogacki
- Not for educators only:
      - Wildlife trivia question of the week: Junk
      - Special Status plant of the week
- Photo Album: Dumont dunes
- Bookstore feature: "A Complete Guide to Ticks"
- Selected upcoming events


"Tule elk back from near extinction" (Woodland Daily Democrat, 2/18/2005)
"Dozens of tule elk were sent to roam freely in the Cache Creek area in an attempt to restore a native California species that has rebounded from the brink of extinction.... The California Department of Fish and Game, the Bureau of Land Management and the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation have acquired critical parcels of private land in the management unit (e.g. about 12,000 acres of the Payne Ranch). These agencies have cooperatively monitored elk at Cache Creek, and are now evaluating the results from several elk that were equipped with GPS collars over the last three years." (includes photos),1413,136%257E32730%257E2719454,00.html

Related: "Cache Creek Management Area (Watchable Wildlife)" (BLM California, Ukiah Field Office website)

"Agencies seek documentation on impacts of feral dogs on wildlife in Southern California" (Desert Managers Group news release, 02/15/2005)
"The DMG (Desert Managers Group) has been receiving increased reports of human and wildlife encounters with uncontrolled/unrestrained and possibly even feral dogs in the deserts of southern California. Initial information indicates confrontations between people and these types of dogs and between these dogs and domestic animals and wildlife have occurred from Edwards Air Force Base to Barstow to Joshua Tree National Park. These reports show that humans and domestic animals have been threatened or harmed and wildlife has been harassed, injured or killed."
PDF file, 80 kilobytes:

Related: "Agencies seek reports of wild dogs in desert" (Riverside Press-Enterprise, 02/16/2005)
A spokesperson said "that agencies, including the U.S. Bureau of Land Management, have begun getting reports of wild dogs harming desert tortoises, a federal protected species considered threatened with extinction. 'They were picking them up and chewing them and doing some damage to their shells,' he said. In the past five years, [he] said, there has been an increase in reports by horseback riders and others who have been threatened or harmed by packs of dogs, mainly across the Mojave Desert."

"Observers thrilled to see cuckoo" (Redding Record Searchlight, 2/13/2005)
"For the first time, a California-endangered yellow-billed cuckoo has been observed in the Lower Clear Creek Watershed....that makes 13 of the 14 indicator species of watershed health that have been found in the 1.8-mile floodway restoration project....The Department of Fish and Game, the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, the U.S. Bureau of Land Management, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the State Water Resources Control Board and the WSRCD have teamed up to work on the restoration project that is helping to return lower Clear Creek to its pre-mining condition."
(Free registration required),2232,REDD_17547_3544325,00.html


"Lost Coast finds new guardians" (Los Angeles Times, 2/20/2005)
"Nature's primitive architecture defines this 26-mile run of spectacular coast, the longest stretch of undeveloped coastline in the continental U.S. Its compelling landscape is the centerpiece of an ambitious wilderness bill that would bestow the nation's highest protections on an area known as the Lost Coast in Humboldt County....The Lost Coast is part of the 40,000 acres within the King Range National Conservation Area earmarked for wilderness designation.",1,679597.story

Related: "California wilderness bill sails through panel" (Sacramento Bee, 02/17/2005)
"Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has endorsed a North Coast wilderness bill that swiftly cleared a Senate committee...and proponents said they hope the legislation has the momentum to be enacted into law." The bill "would designate more than 300,000 acres of federal lands as protected wilderness." Sponsoring congressman"said that all of the lands in the bill are in his congressional district and that the bill has been endorsed by timber companies, farmers, home builders and other stakeholders. All of the lands already are owned by the federal government, and no existing legal roads will be closed as a result of the legislation."
(Free registration now required.)

Related: "King Range National Conservation Area" (BLM California, Arcata Field Office website)
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. The area is managed by BLM California.

"Passage sought to save history" (Bakersfield Californian, 2/20/2005)
"The site of the historic Burro Schmidt Tunnel has become an eyesore, with cleanup and preservation bogged down in squabbling among the Bureau of Land Management, a homeless truck driver and an heir of the legendary Tonie Seger." Seger used to hand out flashlights "so tourists could explore the half-mile tubular oddity carved out by William Henry 'Burro' Schmidt between 1906 and 1938. She delighted guests with stories about Schmidt, whom she never knew, and the desert mining days she never experienced."

"Current job openings - BLM California" (USAJOBS website)
Current listings include biological fire prevention-related positions, range technician and supervisory resource management specialist.


"Feds, DWP Propose Land Tenure Process" (Mammoth Times, 02/22/2005)
"It could be said that more than anything else, Mono and Inyo counties are defined by the enormous amount of federal land that makes up both areas. Up to 97 percent of the two counties land base is in federal hands or in the hands of the City of Los Angeles....It is against this backdrop of growing development pressure that a group of federal agencies, along with the City of Los Angeles and county representatives, have recently decided to...attempt to catalogue all federal and city lands that might be released for private use, and, at the same time, to catalog privately held lands that the owner might wish to trade or sell for land closer to is not common to have many, many agencies doing the same thing together, in a collaborative manner, sharing data and other resources."

"BLM to Hold Planning Meeting" (BLM California news release, 02/17/2005)
The Folsom Field Office of the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is asking the public to help identify issues and concerns regarding future management of about 72,580 acres of public lands in Mariposa County at a public meeting on Thursday, February 24 in Mariposa , between 6:30 p.m. and 8:30 p.m.


"People adopt animals for various reasons" (Ridgecrest Daily Independent, 02/17/2005)
"'People came from everywhere, It's been great,' said Volunteer Sheldon Hensley of Ridgecrest. Hensley and his wife Kristy assisted Bureau of Land Management personnel in processing applications from people wanting to adopt wild horses and burros. The Hensleys themselves have already adopted five horses."

"Halter trained horses up for adoption in Tulare" (BLM California news release, 02/18/2005)
Halter-trained mustangs will be among the wild horses and burros offered for public adoption, when the BLM brings its Adopt-A-Horse or Burro Program to Tulare's International Agri-Center, Saturday and Sunday, March 12-13.


"Grants should help make homes safer from fire" (Chico Enterprise-Record, 02/17/2005)
"Now is a good time for residents to start thinking ahead to the dry fire season and get their property ready to help prevent loss of buildings if fire breaks out." A Butte County program, funded by grants, "makes it easier for residents by having the brush professionally chipped and put back on the property as mulch....there are three funding sources, one from the Butte County Air Quality Management District for about $20,000. Another $15,000 came from a House of Representatives bill and $76,000 from a grant from the Bureau of Land Management.",1413,135%257E25088%257E2716414,00.html

"Mittry, Imperial part of BLM burns" (Yuma Sun, 2/21/2005)
"Weather permitting, the Bureau of Land Management will burn dead vegetation along Mittry Lake and nearby Imperial Pond later this week to promote new growth of wildlife habitat....The prescribed set to take place Saturday, and California State Route 24 is scheduled to be closed at various times during the burn. Motorists should use alternate routes."

Carol Anne Wiley represents environmental interests as the environmental protection representative on BLM's California Desert District Advisory Council.

John BogackiPROFILE: John Bogacki
Raised in Riverside, John Bogacki is now a resident of Bakersfield -- except for the four days per week that he lives at an historical landmark!
Read more in this week's News.bytes Profile:


Why do Bushy-tailed Woodrats collect so much junk? Take your best guess in our online quiz:

Do you know toads? If you missed last week's online quiz, it's not too late to guess - or apply your profound knowledge of wildlife trivia:

Geyer's milkvetchSPECIAL STATUS PLANT OF THE WEEK: Geyer's milkvetch
Annual, rarely persistent into second season, very slender, minutely covered with stiff, straight, sharp, appressed hairs (strigose).

sand dunes at Dumont DunesPHOTO ALBUM: Dumont Dunes
The Dumont Dunes Off-Highway Vehicle Area, also referred to as an Open Area, is an exciting and remote area for off-highway vehicle recreation. Bordered by steep volcanic hills and the slow running Amargosa River, the region is easily recognized from a distance by its distinctive sand dunes. The elevation here varies from 700 feet, at the river, to 1200 feet at the top of Competition Hill, the tallest of the dunes.

off-road buggy at Dumont DunesRelated: "Dumont Dunes Off-Highway Vehicle Area" (BLM California Barstow Field Office website)
User permits are now required at Dumont Dunes. Most visitors ride motorcycles or ATVs, sand rails, or tour the area in vehicles with four-wheel-drive. The area off Dumont Road is used extensively for OHV and sand rail staging and play. The Kingston Range Wilderness to the north is closed to motor vehicles.


1 - About last week's "California wildflower wordfind" puzzle:
"I would like to print your puzzle - really like word puzzles, however do not want to use up all my colored ink printing something that has nothing to do with the puzzle. Can you suggest how that can be done?" Thank you,"
      - C.L.B.

A - If you highlight just the puzzle and words, then select "Print" and then "Selection" - only the puzzle and search words should print out (by default, most browsers do not print the background, unless you set your preferences that way.
B - After an alert News.bytes reader pointed out a misspelling, we corrected the spelling of "mountain lilac" in the puzzle.
C - We have added a PDF version of the puzzle and words, so that they can easily be printed out on one sheet of paper: click the link for "PDF version" from the following Web page:

2 - "I have been receiving "News.bytes" (CA) for a while now, and it is really terrific. It is so helpful to have all the information, schedules, and links to stories included. On top of being a great information resource, it's entertaining, too!
"Thank you, and keep up the great work!"
-- M. P.

Bookstore feature: "A Complete Guide to Ticks"BOOKSTORE FEATURE: "A Complete Guide to Ticks"
"This revised edition describes all common, worrisome ticks, with color photos of each species. It describes the diseases, including symptoms and treatments. It tells you how to avoid ticks and how to remove them if they become attached."


"Report fuels questions about judicial nominee" (Los Angeles Times, 02/16/2005)
"The Interior Department's inspector general has issued a report criticizing the way department lawyers arranged a controversial settlement with a Wyoming rancher accused of violating a host of federal grazing laws while William G. Myers III was the department's top attorney. Myers is among seven lawyers President Bush renominated to the federal bench this week after their nominations were blocked by Senate filibuster.",1,4098001.story

(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.)

02/24/2005 - Folsom Resource Management Plan Public Meeting

02/24/2005 - Desert Wildflowers
North Palm Springs

02/26/2005 - Riparian Restoration, Cosumnes River Preserve

02/27/2005 - W equals Wildflowers
Palm Desert

03/01/2005 - Northeast Resource Advisory Council

03/05/2005 - W equals Wildflowers
Palm Desert

03/05/2005 - North Algodones Dunes Wilderness Hike: Botany
El Centro

03/09/2005 - Folsom Resource Management Plan Public Meeting
Grass Valley

03/12/2005 - Wetlands Restoration, Cosumnes River Preserve

03/12/2005 - Mountain Lion Lecture
Palm Desert

03/12/05 and 03/13/2005 - Old Mojave Road - Geology Field Trip - overnight camping

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