A publication of Bureau of Land Management in California

Issue 285 - 6/13/07

Adopted horse Lilly meets her new family Taking photos of an old house trailer on a "photo safari" along old Route 66 Carriao Plain National Monument Advisory Committee vice-chair Ellen Cypher A sea otter floats on its back A bat gate at an abandoned mine

- Not for educators only:
      - Wildlife trivia question of the week
      - Environmental education
- Wild horses and burros:
      - Family adopts Lilly
      - Test you knowledge
      - Recent adoption event
      - Upcoming adoption events
- Wildfire danger grows
- Recreation on public lands
- Energy
- Route 66 endangered
- Abandoned mines
- Resource management: Sierra plan, saving seeds, habitat, more
- Headlines and highlights: Campus plans, history conference, desert rescue, Alabama Hills, more
- Meet your Advisory Council members
- Selected upcoming events
- National and/or Department of the Interior items: BLM nomination, grazing rules, conservation system


A sea otter floats on its back

Sea Otters are usually only found in the water. When might they come ashore?
(a.) to breed
(b.) to birth their young
(c.) to escape swimming predators
(d.) to sun themselves on the beach
(e.) to wait out bad weather
(f.) when they get their monthly pay
------> See answer near the end of this issue of News.bytes.


"BLM Jr. Camp" (Barstow Desert Dispatch, 6/12/07)
"The Barstow Field Office of the Bureau of Land Management has announced their 2007 Summer Junior Camp schedule. There are four camps, each for one week during the time period, July 23 to August 17....The camp operates on the theory that a hands-on experience is the best way to stimulate curiosity, foster appreciation and teach children about the endless wonders of the Mojave Desert. Each session will have at least two adult educators and also assistance from volunteers. "


Adopted horse Lilly meets her new family"Lilly meets her new family" (News.bytes Extra)
Last month, Lilly was a star at BLM California's state office "Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work Day." Last weekend, she was a star among an even larger crowd, during the Western States Horse Expo held at the Cal Expo Fairgrounds in Sacramento -- and she was adopted by her new family.

"Horse and burro adoption takes place" (KSBW-TV Monterey, 6/10/07)
Video story from last weekend's adoption event in King City.

"Wild horses and burros headed for Chico" (BLM California news release, 6/5/07)
The BLM will offer animals for adoption Saturday and Sunday, June 24 and 25, at the Silver Dollar Fairgrounds in Chico. The BLM will offer 30 horses, including 20 yearling fillies and colts and 10 mares and geldings between 2 and 5 years old. Adopters can also select from 10 burros. The adoption event opens with an hour of silent bidding beginning at 9 a.m. Saturday. Animals not taken during bidding will be available for at $125 adoption fee. Chico will mark a record 21st adoption event in California this fiscal year. Only four more are planned.

"Wild horses and burros: Test your knowledge" (BLM California website)
Visit our BLM California homepage, to test your knowledge with our online quiz. Our first question for this new feature concerns wild horses and burros.

Wild horses"BLM to hold wild horse and burro adoption" (Hollister Pinnacle, 6/8/07)
"A wild horse is different in that once you win it over, you really get back a lot," says Mindy Odom. "My first horse is now 18 years old and my granddaughter rides her. My horse became my best friend." Read a report from just before last weekend's adoption event in King City.

"BLM to hold public meeting on wild horse gathering" (BLM California news release, 6/5/07)
Staff from the Bureau of Land Management will discuss upcoming wild horse gather plans in a public meeting June 21, at the BLM Surprise Field office in Cedarville. BLM Range Management Specialist Steve Surian will provide details and answer questions about upcoming gathers on public land in far northwest Nevada and northeast California. He will also discuss the BLM’s use of helicopters and motor vehicles in these gathering operations.

"Wild horse and burro adoption schedule - 2007" (BLM California website)

"Wild horse and burro adoption schedule" (BLM national website)

"Burros a growing concern for some" (Inland Daily Bulletin, 6/11/07)
"Big Bear Lake - A mountain landscape left parched and depleted of vegetation due to one of the driest winters on record may be to blame for an influx of wild burros into residential neighborhoods for food and water." An earlier influx left about 20 burros killed by vehicles on roads, and in 1997, "a plan was established to capture burros in residential areas and have them corralled and put up for adoption through the Bureau of Land Management's Wild Horse and Burro Program. About 90 burros were captured and adopted by private parties through the program, which reduced the burro population in the mountains to a sustainable level,...."


"Dry winter fuels wildfire warning" (San Francisco Chronicle, 6/9/07)
"The driest winter in decades has left much of the state...with dry vegetation that could fuel a ferocious fire season, experts say....And, increasingly, the responsibility for limiting fire damage is landing on homeowners. Local governments are increasing efforts to inspect property for cleared brush, and state fire officials say they're more and more likely to let neglected home sites burn during serious fires."

"Garden provides example of fire safety" (Hollister Pinnacle, 6/8/07)
"Instead of housing roses, daffodils and irises, the Hollister Fire Departments' garden is an example of how vegetation can be used as a barrier to protect a structure against the threat of fire. Designed by the Fire Safety Council and maintained by the Fleurs Gardening Club, the fire safe garden at the Union Road fire station serves as an example of how a garden can be implemented to protect structures."

"Fire sparked at Keswick shooting range" (Redding Record Searchlight, 6/12/07)
"A morning fire sparked at a popular outdoor target-shooting site burned about an acre Monday, the same day a new order began that prohibits shooting anytime after 1 p.m. on public land. [The fire] started with a gunshot's spark...the shooter...was not at fault and used legal ammunition." BLM's Redding Field Office has taken steps to reduce fire danger at the site.

"BLM puts seasonal fire restrictions in place for public lands" (BLM California news release, 6/11/07)
Fire season restrictions on campfires, off-road driving and target shooting went into effect Monday, June 11, for public lands managed by the Bureau of Land Management in Shasta, Tehama, Butte, Trinity and Siskiyou counties.

"BLM Ukiah Field Office announces seasonal fire restrictions" (BLM California news release, 6/11/07)
Fire season restrictions on campfires and off-road driving went into effect Monday, June 11, for public lands managed by the Bureau of Land Management in Lake, Mendocino, Sonoma, Napa, Yolo, Colusa, Glenn and Solano counties.

Fire restrictions were announced earlier for the California desert...

...and Central California:

"Getting the job done" (Boise, ID Weekly, 6/13/07)
Last weekend, about 700 smokejumpers from around the country gathered in Boise for the National Smokejumpers Association reunion. "Smokejumpers are an elite group. They number about 400, working for both the U.S. Forest Service and the Bureau of Land Management. While their parachuting skills receive the most attention, they are first and foremost firefighters, lugging 100-pound packs and cutting firebreaks in some of the most difficult terrain in the country. (A feature story with current and historical small photos.)

"National fire news" (National Interagency Fire Center)
Updated daily during wildfire season.

"InciWeb - Incident Information System" (Interagency website)
Current information on wildfires and other emergencies, nationwide.


"BLM opens new segment of Sacramento River Rail Trail" (BLM California news release, 6/12/07)
"Hikers, mountain bikers and horseback riders can explore a new four-mile trail along the Sacramento River near Keswick Reservoir, with completion of a project by local volunteers and the Bureau of Land Management. The Hornbeck Trail segment, named for a volunteer who was instrumental in its development, follows the path of a historic mining railroad on the east side of the river. It features gentle grades suitable for all age groups."

"A Blackhawk helicopter helps complete bridge at Millerton Lake" (KFSN TV Fresno, 6/9/07)
"Mountain bikers and equestrians in both Madera and Fresno counties are one step closer to having a new and improved trail. The Big Sandy Bridge got washed out in 1995....The bridge will connect Millerton State recreation area to the San Joaquin River Gorge, creating an 18 mile trail for mountain bikers and horse riders year round." A link for "Watch Action News on Demand" includes video of the operation.

RELATED: "A Blackhawk helicopter helps complete bridge at Millerton Lake - video" (KFSN TV Fresno, 6/9/07)
You may also be able to access the video report mentioned above, using this link:

RELATED: "San Joaquin River Gorge Management Area" (BLM California, Bakersfield Field Office)
The trail head is located on the Fresno County portion of the Management Area and leads to BLM's trail bridge which crosses the San Joaquin River. It may be used by hikers, bicyclists and horseback riders. The Bridge allows recreation users to cross the river and explore the Madera County side of the Management Area. The Madera County side contains the Pa'san Ridge Trail and the Wuh-ki'o Trail, for a combined trail distance of ten miles.

"BLM seeks representatives to serve on a Technical Review Team for The Meccacopia Special Recreation Management Area" (BLM California news release, 6/7/07)
BLM's Palm Springs-South Coast Field Office is seeking volunteers to participate in a Technical Review Team to assist in the preparation of the Meccacopia Recreation Area Management Plan. Among the interests likely to be involved are: 1) special permitting groups (commercial, competitive non-competitive, organized groups), 2) California Department of Parks and Recreation, Off-Highway Motor Vehicle Recreation Commission, 3) California, motorized and non-motorized recreation, OHV organizations, 4) environmental concerns, 6) Riverside County, and 6) Native American and Hispanic concerns. 

"Pedal pushes mettle" (Monterey Herald, 6/10/07)
"24 Hours of Adrenalin race tests limits of bicyclists' endurance....Cycling teams can have two, five and 10 members, but individuals can compete — if they can handle riding a bike for 24 hours....The first two miles are a tough uphill climb, and they charged up and down the Bureau of Land Management trails around Laguna Seca."

RELATED: "Recreation - Fort Ord public lands" (BLM California, Hollister Field Office)
"Fort Ord offers 50 miles of trails on 7,200 acres. Trails are open every day from dawn to dusk for hikers, mountain bikers, horseback riders, wildlife photographers and wildflower and plant lovers. Recreation enthusiasts can choose to walk or ride the tight single track of the grassland hills to the winding trails through the dense shrubs and oaks of maritime chaparral."

"On the wing" (Redding Record Searchlight, 6/10/07)
"The Shasta County Sportsmen's Association, in conjunction with the Department of Fish and Game and the U.S. Bureau of Land Management, will sponsor its junior and women's pheasant hunts this fall at the Bend Area of the Sacramento River Recreation Area."


"BLM launches effort to facilitate renewable energy development on federal lands" (BLM news release, 6/14/07)
"In response to the increased national demand for clean renewable energy, the Bureau of Land Management today announced it will prepare a programmatic environmental impact statement (PEIS) analyzing areas with high potential for geothermal energy development....the PEIS will examine the environmental impacts of boosting geothermal leasing in areas with high potential for near-term exploration and development of geothermal resources. If deemed appropriate by the PEIS, the BLM will amend the land use plans in those areas to allow for expanded leasing."

"FERC impact report in favor of North Baja pipeline" (EnerPub, 6/11/07)
"The U.S. Federal Energy Regulatory Commission and the California State Lands Commission have prepared a final environmental impact statement, or environmental impact report, in favor of the natural gas pipeline facilities proposed by North Baja Pipeline...in La Paz County, Arizona and Riverside and Imperial Counties, California....The U.S. Bureau of Land Management and U.S. Bureau of Reclamation participated as cooperating agencies in the preparation of the impact report, which will be used by the BLM to consider amending the California Desert Conservation Area Plan and the Yuma District Resource Management Plan."

A large group attended this seminar "BLM hosts 5th annual seminars for Oil and Gas operators" (News.bytes Extra)
Every 18 months, BLM California's Bakersfield Field Office holds seminars for representatives of the oil and gas industry. This year 160 attended the 5th seminar and for the second time, an additional half-day seminar focused just on field issues.


"World Monuments Fund unveils 2008 watch list" (Architectural Record, 6/6/07)
Watch List of 100 Most Endangered Sites: "This year’s list highlights buildings and other heritage sites that are threatened by political conflict, unchecked development, and, for the first time, climate change." Among them are Historic Route 66: "Once the only year-round route to the West Coast, this highway evolved into an iconic getaway route, dotted with whimsical architecture and amusements as the American road trip became a right of passage. Now a pilgrimage route for modern travelers, the beloved sites along Route 66 are deteriorating and need protection."

"New kicks on Route 66 for commercial builders" (New York Times, 6/10/07)
"Since Route 66 was decommissioned as a federal highway...many motels have been lost to the wrecking ball, while others have stood vacant, ready to be revitalized by a movement to create a heritage corridor along the historical highway. Route 66 aficionados hope that the restoration of one of the most famous stops for travelers along the highway, Roy’s Motel and Cafe in Amboy, Calif., will anchor a revival of motel culture and Route 66 tourism."
(May require free registration)


Taking photos of an old house trailer on a "photo safari" along old Route 66"Safaris Where the Hunt Is for the Perfect Picture" (New York Times, 6/10/07)
"Students are not only escorted to postcard-ready spots, but are taught how to take postcard-perfect shots. That was the idea anyway last January, when about 30 amateur photographers gathered near Barstow, Calif., along a tumbledown stretch of Route 66 in the Mojave Desert. Unlike most photo safaris, which are held in conventionally photogenic places like Paris or Bhutan, the focus was the rotting architecture, corroded salt flats and black volcanic craters that litter this desert landscape. 'We are photographing the disappearance of the industrial age,' said Dave Wyman, a freelance photographer who ran the three-day safari."
(May require free registration)

"California's historic Route 66; An action plan for 'America's Main Street'" (BLM California, Needles Field Office)
A significant portion of Route 66 in California’s Mojave Desert traverses public lands managed by the Bureau of Land Management, and the BLM has been working with other groups on preservation plans. This plan resulted from public workshops in the year 2000.
PDF file, 345 kilobytes, 32 pages):

"U.S. Southwest towns tap rail heritage for tourists" (Reuters, 6/4/07)
"In 2008, one hundred years after it first opened its doors, local officials hope the El Garces will be back in business and once more lure tourists back to this small California town . A number of towns like Needles, which based much of its business on Route 66 after railroad passenger services dried up until Interstate 40 meant travelers bypassed town at speed, have languished...." A team is reconstructing the El Garces "former Harvey House - a combined hotel and restaurant for rail crews and passengers."


A bat gate at an abandoned mine"State, Bureau close seven hazardous mines" (Madera Tribune, 6/11/07)
"The State of California Office of Mine Reclamation, in partnership with the U.S. Bureau of Land Management, completed the closure of seven hazardous mine tunnels and shafts in the Quartz Mountain area on Thursday....Gregg Wilkerson, geologist in BLM's Bakersfield Field Office, said...they put bat gates up that allow the bats to go in and out but keep the people outside. The area has been under lease by the Yosemite school district for the past seven years, and it was the potential development of the land by the school district that put the mine shafts and tunnels on BLM's most urgent list."

"EPA offers new plan to clean abandoned mines" (Reuters, 6/6/07)
"The Bush administration on Wednesday made it easier for private groups and local governments to clean up abandoned hard-rock mines that often pollute nearby streams and wildlife habitats. Under existing pollution laws, volunteers cleaning abandoned sites are liable for any pollution on the property, even when contamination dates back 100 years. But the Environmental Protection Agency said it will now waive some of those laws when volunteers seek to clean up mines long ago orphaned by their owners."


RELATED: "EPA takes major step forward on cleaning up abandoned mines" (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency news release, 6/6/07)
"There are an estimated 500,000 orphan mines in the United States, most of which are former hardrock mines located in the West. Thousands of watersheds and stream miles are impacted by drainage and runoff from these mines, one of the largest sources of water pollution in the region....In many cases, the parties responsible for the pollution from orphan mine sites no longer exist or are not financially viable." Those "eager to voluntarily clean up these abandoned sites....have expressed concerns that they may be held liable....This obstacle has prevented many cleanup projects from moving forward."

RELATED: "Good Samaritan Administrative Tools - Fact Sheet" (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency)
"The Good Samaritan Initiative is an Agency-wide initiative to accelerate restoration of watersheds and fisheries threatened by abandoned hard rock mine runoff by encouraging voluntary cleanups by parties that do not own the property and are not responsible for the property’s environmental conditions. The Good Samaritan administrative CERCLA tools were issued on June 6, 2007." Includes links to much more information.


"BLM releases Sierra Proposed Resource Management Plan" (BLM California news release, 6/8/07)
The Bureau of Land Management has released its Sierra Proposed Resource Management Plan and Final Environmental Impact Statement. The plan provides direction and guidance for more than 230,000 acres of public land located primarily in nine central California counties including Amador, Calaveras, El Dorado, Mariposa, Nevada, Placer, Sacramento, Tuolumne and Yuba counties.

"Chuck Haugen Conservation Fund Picnic set for June 23" (BLM California news release, 6/5/07)
“The annual picnic allows us to recognize natural resource conservation award winners and also say thank you to all the volunteers and others who work to preserve our natural resources,” said Bruce Delgado, BLM botanist and Chuck Haugen Conservation Fund president. Five organizations or individuals will receive $250 grants to be used in their conservation work. The Fund is named in honor of a prominent volunteer and conservationist from the Monterey Bay area.

"Stashing seeds in 'Noah's fridge'" (Christian Science Monitor, 6/13/07)
"Escondido - In a modest building with stuccoed walls made from bales of hay, scientists are working on an ambitious conservation project. They seek to create a "backup" of this area's -- and the world's -- wild plants....Something about the 21st century has triggered a flurry of seed-banking efforts. In 2001, the US Bureau of Land Management inaugurated its Seeds of Success program, an effort to bank native US plants for restoration projects and a contributor to the [Millennium Seed Bank Project]."

"Proposal would cut spotted owl's habitat" (Associated Press at San Francisco Chronicle, 6/13/07)
"The Bush administration proposes cutting 1.5 million acres from Northwest forests considered critical to the survival of the northern spotted owl. The move could reopen the 1990s debate over timber production on public lands, in which logging companies argued that efforts to save the owl contributed to the Northwest timber industry's decline....The 1994 Northwest Forest Plan cut timber production on national forests in Washington, Oregon and Northern California by more than 80 percent to protect owl and salmon habitat...."


"Desert Hot Springs, Palm Springs vying for College of the Desert west valley campus" (Riverside Press-Enterprise, 6/10/07)
"Competition for a College of the Desert western campus has Palm Springs and Desert Hot Springs each promising land, subsidies and a lively college atmosphere in the hopes of luring the school, which both believe could bring new development and cachet to their cities....The [Palm Springs] City Council passed a resolution last week to apply to the Bureau of Land Management to acquire a 115-acre tract. It would be part of the project's 142 acres...."

RELATED: "Palm Springs moves forward with west valley COD campus plans" (Palm Springs Desert Sun, 6/8/07)
"Palm Springs will move ahead with its plan to acquire 115 acres from the Bureau of Land Management for a possible College of the Desert campus on the west side of the Coachella Valley, city officials said."

"Our opinion: Hwy. 111 a good trash route" (Imperial Valley Press, 6/8/07)
Editorial: "The fear that 200 trash-filled tractor-trailer rigs will be rumbling through downtown Brawley each day appears unwarranted. A landfill is scheduled to open at the former Mesquite Mine near Glamis in eastern Imperial County in 2009." BLM was involved in a land exchange for the site.
(Free registration required)

"Father, daughter rescued after getting lost in desert" (Bakersfield Californian, 6/8/07)
"A 65-year-old man and his daughter were rescued Friday after their vehicle became stuck in a sand wash when they got lost in the desert. The man and his daughter...were visiting the Burro Schmidt Tunnel area and exploring trails in the El Paso Mountain Range...." Safety tips for visiting the desert include obtaining "trail maps for east Kern County and adjacent high desert areas ...at the Bureau of Land Management's Jawbone Station on Highway 14.

"Conference honors local history" (Barstow Desert Dispatch, 6/11/07)
Barstow dedicates an Old Spanish Trail mural -- entertaining a crowd with "food, music and American Indian dancing....The dedication took place at noon on Saturday in order to coincide with the Old Spanish Trail Association conference, which Barstow Community College hosted from Thursday through Sunday....Along with the Old Spanish Trail group and the National Parks Service, the BLM is working on a proposed $50,000 project to do an archeological investigation on Emigrant Pass, a part of the trail about two hours northwest of Barstow."

"Group heads for the hills" (Inyo Register, 6/6/07)
"Making an effort to educate visitors and locals about the history, value and the fragility of the Alabama Hills has become one of the key goals of the...community stewardship program currently being developed by members of the Lone Pine community and the Bureau of Land Management. Recently...the group paid a visit to the BLM’s scraggly little parking lot and informational kiosk....The overgrown wide spot could become a legitimate 'entry station' to the Alabamas, noted BLM’s Jim Jennings, who has been the BLM’s man on the ground in the Alabamas for years."

"Invasive yellow star thistle nearly impossible to kill" (Hollister Pinnacle, 6/8/07)
"More than 15 million acres of California rangeland are infested with a spiny weed that arrived from Eurasia not long after the '49ers did more than 150 years ago....Control is difficult....The Bureau of Land Management is preparing to conduct a controlled burn on public lands it manages in southernmost San Benito County as part of an annual program intended to control the weed. BLM staff members plan to conduct the burn during the week of June 13 on approximately 30 acres in the Clear Creek Management Area."

"Additional freeze aid on the way" (Visalia Times-Delta, 6/11/07)
"Part of nearly $120 billion in federal money earmarked primarily to fund military operations will go to disaster relief, helping California farmers and ranchers recover from January's devastating freeze, federal authorities have announced. In addition, a small portion likely will go to help fight marijuana-growing on federal land in the Sierra foothills" managed by the BLM, the U.S. Forest Service and National Park Service.

"Current job openings - BLM California" (USAJOBS website)

Carriao Plain National Monument Advisory Committee vice-chair Ellen CypherMEET YOUR ADVISORY COMMITTEE MEMBERS: Ellen Cypher...
...represents the public-at-large and is the vice chair of the Carrizo Plain National Monument Advisory Committee. Read more:

Unless otherwise noted, find more details online at:

June 16-17 and 23-24 - Guided hikes
Headwaters Forest Reserve

June 21 - Wild horse gathering public meeting

June 23 - Chuck Haugen Conservation Fund Picnic

June 23-24 - Wild horse and burro adoption


"Editorial: No time to coast" (Las Vegas Sun, 6/11/07)
"BLM nominee should be carefully considered even though Bush's term nearing its end....The president does have leeway in choosing people for top federal posts, but that doesn't mean the Senate has to approve every nominee."

"Federal grazing rules put on hold" (Associated Press in San Francisco Chronicle, 6/8/07)
"A judge on Friday blocked new rules governing how ranchers use 160 million acres of federal land, saying a federal agency had given in to pressure from the livestock industry. The Bureau of Land Management violated the Endangered Species Act, the National Environmental Policy Act and the Federal Land Policy and Management Act in creating the rules, U.S. District Judge B. Lynn Winmill ruled."

"Bono testifies in favor of protecting conservation system" (California Chronicle, 6/11/07)
"Congresswoman Mary Bono (R-CA), Co-Chair of the National Landscape Conservation System Congressional Caucus, on Thursday called upon a House panel to make the Conservation System a permanent part of the West's legacy of land protection. Bono testified on behalf of H.R. 2016, the National Landscape Conservation System Protection Act....The bill would provide a congressional stamp of approval for the Bureau of Land Management's Conservation System, administratively designated in 2000."

WILDLIFE TRIVIA answer and related websites
(e.) to wait out bad weather

SOURCE: "Sea Otter - Enhydra lutris" (BLM California wildlife database)
"Sea otters spend the majority of their time in the water. In fact, they usually only come onto shore to wait out a storm."

"Yearly census points up difficulties faced by sea otters along coast" (Associated Press in San Diego Union-Tribune, 6/11/07)
"Female sea otters often bear scars on their noses, the price of breeding with clumsy, sharp-toothed partners. But vicious injuries...are showing up with unusual frequency, one of several signs leading marine scientists to suspect something is amiss for the threatened species."

"A record otter count but little celebration" (San Luis Obispo Tribune, 6/1/07)
"More otters than ever have been counted off the California coast this spring....Scientists caution not to read too much into the single-year numbers. What is more meaningful, they say, will be the longterm trend revealed by years of surveys.....Biologists consider sea otters important indicators of the health of the near-shore ocean. They are affected by polluted runoff and other human impacts."

"California Coastal National Monument" (BLM California website)
Spanning the entire 1,100 mile length of the California coastline, the California Coastal National Monument is comprised of more than 20,000 BLM administered islands, rocks, exposed reefs, and pinnacles. The Monument includes those public lands that are exposed above mean high tide, within the corridor extending 12 nautical miles from the shoreline between Mexico and Oregon. The primary purpose of the Monument is to protect the important geologic features and habitat for marine plants and animals found within its boundaries.

"Sewage plant fix victory for otters" (San Jose Mercury News, 6/9/07)
"In recent years, federal studies have shown that more sea otters are dying and washing up sick off Morro Bay than any other place in the 300-mile range where California otters swim between Half Moon Bay and Santa Barbara. No connection has ever been proved between the plant and the ailing otters. But suspicious environmentalists have pushed for four years to modernize it anyway."
(Free registration required by this news site.)

"Think globally, but cook locally" (San Mateo County Times, 6/1/07)
"Sunshine filters through the tank where Rosa swims at the Monterey Bay Aquarium, dappling the floor while the surf crashes in the distance....It disturbs me that my choices at the dinner table may negatively affect populations of otters -- or fish, or species of trees or the quality of groundwater or, ultimately, the lives of other human beings....It's my first time attending Cooking for Solutions, a series of fine dining and cooking events focused on food and wine produced in ways that preserve the health of the ocean and land."

"Sea otter research at WERC" (U.S. Geological Survey, Western Ecological Research Center)
Links to sea otter survey results, sea otter studies fact sheet, and related items.

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