A publication of Bureau of Land Management in California

Issue 371 - 2/25/09

close-up of a brown pelican by the sea Free Headwaters Forest Reserve brochure Old and arthritic dog Kelly gets a ride on Josie the burro A scene among the trees at Headwaters BLM Headwaters Forest Reserve manager Chris Heppe

- Headwaters Forest Reserve:
      - 10th anniversary
      - Free brochure
      - Beyond the Brochure: Online video tour
      - Employee profile: New Headwaters manager
- Headlines and highlights: New district managers, Advisory Council meet, wild horses & burros, jobs, more
- Not for educators only:
      - Wildlife trivia question of the week
      - More wildlife news
- Renewable energy
- Imperial Sand Dunes
- Noxious weeds battle
- Selected upcoming events
- National and/or Department of the Interior items:

Also see this issue of News.bytes online at:

The Headwaters Forest Reserve is 7,472 acres of public land located 6 miles southeast of Eureka. It was acquired for public ownership on March 1, 1999. News.bytes is celebrating the 10th anniversary of the acquisition with an offer for a free brochure, and by introducing a new "Beyond the Brochure" video tour of the Reserve.

Free Headwaters Forest Reserve brochureFREE OFFER: Headwaters Forest Reserve brochure
This double-sided folded brochure offers information and tips on visiting the Reserve, a map overview and several photos. We will mail a brochure to each of the first 500 people to fill and and submit the information at the following link.

A green-hue scene in the Headwaters Forest ReserveBeyond the Brochure graphicBEYOND THE BROCHURE:
Headwaters Forest Reserve
Explore the Headwaters Forest Reserve in this narrated video and slide show tour of the area, including some history of the former mill town of Falk that once thrived within its perimeter, and plans for the future.

A scene among the trees at Headwaters"Headwaters Forest Reserve" (BLM-California, Arcata Field Office)
The reserve is set aside to protect and preserve the ecological and wildlife values in the area, particularly the stands of old-growth redwood that provide habitat for the threatened marbled murrelet, and the stream systems that provide habitat for threatened coho salmon.

BLM Headwaters Forest Reserve manager Chris HeppeEMPLOYEE PROFILE: Chris Heppe...
...has been with the BLM for only a few months and already he has a monumental (pun intended) task of planning the 10th anniversary celebration of the Headwaters Forest Reserve acquisition. Probably not the task he signed on for, but one he has embraced enthusiastically in his new position as the Headwaters Forest Reserve manager. Read more:


Close-up of Nancy Lull"Nancy Lull is named BLM district manager for Northern California" (BLM-California news release, 2/23/09)
The Bureau of Land Management has selected Nancy Lull of Baker City, Oregon, as the district manager for the newly formed Northern California District. Lull, a 20-year BLM career employee, will be headquartered in Redding, and will oversee BLM field offices in Arcata, Redding, Alturas, Susanville and Cedarville. The five offices manage over 3.2 million acres of public land, including the Headwaters Forest Reserve; the King Range National Conservation Area; the Sacramento River Bend; Klamath and Trinity wild and scenic rivers; the northern segment of California Coastal National Monument; portions of the historic Emigrant and California National Historic Trails; Bizz Johnson Rail Trail and Eagle Lake.

Close-up of Nancy Hardy"Kathy Hardy is named BLM district manager for Central California" (BLM-California news release, 2/23/09)
The Bureau of Land Management has selected Kathy Hardy of El Dorado Hills, California, as the district manager for the newly formed Central California District. Hardy will be headquartered in Sacramento and will oversee BLM field offices in Ukiah, Folsom, Bakersfield, Bishop, and Hollister. The five offices manage over 2.1 million acres of public land, including the Carrizo Plain National Monument; the central California segment of the California Coastal National Monument; the American, Merced and Tuolumne wild and scenic rivers; Piedras Blancas Light Station Outstanding Natural Area; Cosumnes River and Pine Hill Preserves; and the Alabama Hills.

"BLM announces vacancy on Northeast California Advisory Council" (BLM-California news release, 2/24/09)
The U. S. Bureau of Land Management is accepting nominations for a vacant seat on its Northeast California Resource Advisory Council. The seat is for an elected official from state, county or local government for a term ending in September 2010. It was previously held by Modoc County Supervisor Mike Dunn, who left office in January. Nominations must be received by Friday, March 20.

"BLM Desert District Advisory Council to meet in Barstow" (BLM-California news release, 2/20/09)
The BLM's California Desert District Advisory Council will participate in a field tour of BLM-administered public lands in the Johnson Valley Off Highway Vehicle Area on Friday, March 20 and meet in formal session on Saturday, March 21 in Barstow

"Fort Ord musical planting event planned" (BLM-California news release, 2/19/09)
Bluegrass and native grasses will be the order of the day March 7 at the annual Fort Ord Public Lands Musical Volunteer Planting. The event will run from 9 a.m. to noon. "If you love music in nature, come join in our 13th year of musical restoration of the incredible Fort Ord backcountry," said Bruce Delgado, botanist in the Bureau of Land Management's Hollister Field Office.

Old and arthritic dog Kelly gets a ride on Josie the burroMustang Kobi shows off his blue ribbon"National wild horse and burro newsletter"
(BLM national website, winter 2009 issue)
Stories include this new issue include "Dot, the mustang trainer" - "Kobi, My Wonderful Mustang" - "Murphy, The Little Idaho Frisian and Emma" - "Our Kids" - "Still Going" and "Don Cayusa." In the thumbnail at left, a burro carries his arthritic campmate dog towards home.

"When youth and conservation meet" (Barstow Desert Dispatch, 2/23/09)
"Two Saturdays a month, the crews will be out building trails, planting trees, cleaning up campgrounds or rehabilitating desert areas damaged by off-road vehicle use. Brad Mastin, an outdoor recreation planner with the Barstow BLM office, said he sees the program as a way of channeling the kids into environmental and technical careers. Their first project will be building an 'outdoor classroom' on eight acres of land behind the Desert Discovery Center on Barstow Road. The teens will build a quarter-mile trail with eight teaching stations; including a small foot bridge that they will help to design and engineer."

California Conservation Corps member Jennifer Hughes stacks cut logs at the California Conservation Corps' new site in CamarilloCalifornia Conservation Corps members Deshawn McCall, right, and Daniel Alexander fill sandbags during training on building a water barrierRELATED: "California Conservation agency, spared by lawmakers, can continue teaching youths through labor" (Ventura County Star, 2/22/09)
"To help repair a $42 billion budget shortfall, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger put the CCC on the chopping block, a proposal that drew protests, a 'Save the Corps' movement on a Web site, and a letter from the four preceding governors urging him and state lawmakers not to ax it. Something worked. On Thursday, word came that the state budget passed in the early dawn hours included full funding for the CCC. And the kicker is the program now could expand under President Barack Obama’s freshly signed economic stimulus plan that will pump federal money into California." (Earlier issues of News.bytes mentioned the CCC because of the work they do for BLM offices such as the Arcata Field Office.)

"Current job openings - BLM California"
(USAJOBS website)
Current openings include petroleum engineering technician, planning and environmental coordinator, fire lookouts, wildland firefighters and archaeology technician.


close-up of a brown pelican by the sea
From a photo by U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service

Where do brown pelicans usually make their nests?
(a.) On small coastal islands
(b.) In recesses of coastal cliffs
(c.) On floating masses of driftwood and seaweed
(d.) They don’t exactly build nests, but scoop sand out of dunes and bury their eggs
(e.) They don’t build nests at all, but carry their young in the large pouch under their bills
(f.) It will lay its eggs in another bird’s nest, and rely on that bird to incubate them (such as a hummingbird’s nest)

------> See answer -- and more information -- near the end of this issue of News.bytes.


A rescue worker holds a brown pelican found in a parking lot"Is global warming confusing pelicans?" (Torrance Daily Breeze, 2/23/09)
"Climate change might have fooled thousands of California brown pelicans, who stayed north later than usual last year and encountered harsh winter storms on their trip south, researchers now believe. That theory has emerged following tests and observation of dozens of sick, disoriented and frost-bitten adult pelicans that turned up in December and January, researchers said. The birds were rescued by International Bird Rescue Research Center in San Pedro after they were seen wandering in unusual places, such as parking lots and coastal streets ... Tests showed that the birds did not suffer from avian flu, domoic acid poisoning or West Nile virus."

"Beach visitors urged to leave seal pups alone" (Marin Independent Journal, 2/21/09)
"A local organization is reminding beachcombers to not disturb harbor seal pups that might show up on area beaches in the coming weeks. Officials with the Gulf of the Farallones National Marine Sanctuary said harbor seal pups, born in late winter and early spring, could suffer permanent harm if they are moved. Seals are federally protected animals under the Marine Mammal Protection Act. 'The rule of thumb is, if a seal reacts to your presence, you're too close,' said sanctuary marine biologist Jan Roletto. 'Avoid eye contact and back away slowly until they no longer notice you'."

"California Coastal National Monument" (BLM-California)
Located off the 1,100 miles of the California coastline, the California Coastal National Monument is comprised of more than 20,000 BLM administered small 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.

"Drought could be nightmare for nature" (San Diego Union-Tribune, 2/24/09)
"The punishing drought that threatens to disrupt California's economy could also exact a heavy toll on the environment, from the Anza-Borrego Desert to the mountains casting shadows on Lake Tahoe ... while drastic cuts to farms and cities have attracted national attention, the combination of drought and delivery shortfalls may be just as painful for fish and wildlife. Despite the recent stormy interruption in the Sierra Nevada, forage may be scarce when bears wake up from their winter slumber, salmon could literally cook in too-warm waters and waterfowl might have to crowd into shrinking wetlands. More rain is urgently needed to dampen fire-prone forests and chaparral -- home to common deer and rare butterflies."

A fisher in the wild"State wants to relocate fuzzy little fishers in hopes of building population"
(Redding Record Searchlight, 2/24/09)
"State scientists plan to trap a secretive little mammal slinking through north state woods and relocate 40 Pacific fishers onto timberland in the southern Cascades and northern Sierra ... A candidate for the federal Endangered Species Act protection since 2004, the fisher is still recovering from trapping and habitat loss to logging in the past two centuries." The Pacific fisher has been the subject of past News.bytes wildlife trivia questions.


"U.S. renewable energy faces weak economy, old grid" (Reuters, 2/23/09)
"U.S. President Barack Obama set the goal: double U.S. renewable energy production in three years. Congress provided the incentives as part of the $787 billion stimulus package. Still, it may take awhile for solar and wind energy companies to get new business and the smart grid to transmit those power supplies ... 'What we have to do as well is figure out how we're going to get the grid upgraded, which is part of the economic recovery package, so that we can get the energy from where it is being produced to the areas where it will be consumed,' said U.S. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar, whose department oversees the federal lands where new transmission lines may be built."

RELATED: "Secretary Salazar highlights role of Interior Department in developing renewable energy, 21st century transmission grid" (Department of the Interior news release, 2/23/09)
"Highlighting the importance of these public lands and offshore areas under the Department of the Interior’s jurisdiction, the Secretary pointed to 'a huge energy potential for wind in the Atlantic, a huge solar potential in the Southwest and a whole host of other items in the portfolio of renewable energy.'  The Secretary cautioned, however, that the success of these efforts would depend on getting the energy from the places where it is produced to the places where it is consumed."

"NRG and eSolar join a growing list of utility-scale solar projects" (BNET Energy Blog, 2/24/09)
"Plans to create massive solar farms in southwestern states are multiplying, with companies that were tiny startups only a year or two ago promising to supply electricity for tens of thousands of homes and businesses ... there’s no shortage of other companies willing to take on that risk. There are 16 solar projects for which the Bureau of Land Management has received a plan of development (POD) to produce 1,000 megawatts of or more ... These all add up to about 21 gigawatts of energy, while all the projects on the BLM’s big list total almost 49GW. Most of the projects would be located in California or nearby..."

"Powerlink meeting is met with outrage" (San Diego Union-Tribune, 2/21/09)
"Angry residents said they weren't given notice that the approved route for the controversial Sunrise Powerlink transmission line will run through El Monte Valley ... In December, the California Public Utilities Commission approved a 123-mile line running through East County along Interstate 8 from Imperial Valley to San Diego. The commission rejected SDG&E's plans to run the $2 billion line through Anza-Borrego Desert State Park ... Residents said that because of SDG&E's focus on the northern route, they had few worries that the line would be built through East County."

RELATED: "Proposed Powerlink line topic of SDG&E meetings" (San Diego Union-Tribune, 2/23/09)
"San Diego Gas & Electric Co. is holding a series of open houses around the county to answer residents' questions about the proposed Sunrise Powerlink transmission line."

"Proposal favors local projects" (Imperial Valley Press, 2/24/09)
Imperial Valley renewable energy projects may get a big boost following proposed regulations from the California Public Utilities Commission. The regulations would require all regulated utilities in the state to give special consideration to Imperial County renewable energy projects when deciding where to purchase their renewable energy from ... The regulations are attached to the Sunrise Powerlink transmission line, which was approved in December as a way to wheel renewable energy from generators in the Valley to other areas of the state.
(Note: This news site may require free registration to view its content online.)


A rider on a quad passes near the border fence in the Imperial Sand Dunes"Beloved parts of border changed almost overnight" (Associated Press in San Diego Union-Tribune, 2/19/09)
"A fence now slices through the Imperial Sand Dunes, preventing recreational riders from veering into Mexican sands. Before, drug smugglers easily blended in with riders to reach Interstate 8, less than a half-mile from the border at one point ... The sands extend about five miles into Mexico. Until last year, the border was almost invisible, marked by 15-foot concrete obelisks spaced far apart. ... Agents chased wayward riders and ordered them back to the U.S."

"Imperial Sand Dunes" (BLM-California, El Centro Field Office)
Information and updates.

"Marine Corps Air Station Search and Rescue" (Yuma Sun, 2/20/09)
"Although their primary mission is to look after the safety of military personnel in the extensive training ranges, the Marines and sailors of Yuma's Marine Corps Air Station Search and Rescue also assist the civilian population in times of need ... On the average, SAR will conduct 30 rescue operations per year and have already completed five this year. During winter, most of their attention is focused on coming to the aid of off-road vehicle operators in the Imperial Sand Dunes."


"Agencies will loan tools to defeat Scotch Broom" (BLM-California news release, 2/24/09)
With its brilliant yellow flowers and dense, bushy stands along highways, Scotch broom is one of the most recognizable plants in northern California. It is also one of the most threatening to native plants and landscapes. To combat the invasive plant, member agencies of the Humboldt-Del Norte Weed Management Area are loaning tools to help property owners remove the plants.

BLM weeder works with Scotch-broom removal toolRELATED: "Free loaners to fight Scotch broom" (News.bytes Extra, 5/20/08)
Photos of Scotch Broom and the weed-removal tool in action, from last year's effort. A field of Scotch broom may look attractive in bloom -- but like other invasive weeds, it crowds out native plants. Seeds are known to survive at least five years in the soil and possibly as long as thirty years. Cutting the plant off at the base will not kill it as it readily resprouts. The entire plant with root system must be pulled manually, before flowering or seedling.

yellow flowers of Scotch Broom in the fieldNoxious weed graphicRELATED:
"Noxious weeds program: Scotch Broom" (BLM-California, Arcata Field Office)
Manually pull these plants prior to seeding or flowering. For large infestations, a Weed Wrench™ is recommended. Do not allow these plants to seed as they have a persistent seed bank that will require subsequent treatments. Cutting the plant off at the base will not kill it -- the entire plant with root system must be pulled.

"Department of Interior and BLM officials to participate in National Invasive Weeds Awareness Week" (BLM national news release, 2/23/09)
The Tenth Annual National Invasive Weeds Awareness Week ( February 23-27) is organized by the Invasive Weeds Awareness Coalition. The week-long event will focus on preserving the nation’s natural heritage from the ravages of weeds. "In the continental United States, weeds are estimated to have destroyed 126 million acres of land," said BLM Acting Director Ron Wenker. "The worst of the invasive weeds are spreading at a rate of 15 percent a year all across the country, resulting in an economic impact of $34.7 billion annually."

Unless otherwise noted, find more details online at:

tonight and February 26 - Travel management workshops
See calendar for locations, by BLM-California Bakersfield Field Office

tonight and March 7 - Public meetings for Carrizo Plain National Monument
See calendar for locations

February 28 - Bryophytes hike (mosses and lichens)
Whitethorn lecture series

March 7 - Musical planting event
Fort Ord


"Salazar begins rapid, responsible implementation of Interior's $3 billion in Economic Recovery Plan" (Department of the Interior news release, 2/20/09)
"Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar today estimated the $3 billion in funding allocated for the Department could create as many as 100,000 jobs and stimulate business activity in communities across America ... he has established a Recovery Act Task Force that includes the leadership of Interior bureaus to determine which proposed projects should be funded ... Among the major criteria for selecting projects, Salazar noted, are addressing the department’s highest priority mission needs; generating the largest number of jobs in the shortest period of time; and creating lasting value for the American public."

WILDLIFE TRIVIA answer and related websites
(a.) On small coastal islands

SOURCE: "Brown Pelican - Pelecanus occidentalis" (BLM California wildlife database)
"The preferred nesting sites are small coastal islands which provide protection from mammal predators, especially raccoons, and sufficient elevation to prevent widescale flooding of nests."

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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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