A publication of Bureau of Land Management in California

Issue 488 - 7/7/11

two students work among tall sea grass a woman wears a helmet as she rides a horse in the high desert stone walls of a miniature "castle" oil pumping rig silhouette of a man hanging sideways from rocks


- America's Great Outdoors
- Get Outdoors Tip of the Week
- Not for educators only: Wildlife trivia question of the week
- Wild horses and burros
- Energy and renewable energy
- Wildfires and prevention
- Headlines and highlights: Assorted topics from your public lands in California

This issue of News.bytes is online at:


a team works on the outer walls of a small buildingtwo students work among tall sea grass"BLM helps North Coast youth get outdoors" (News.bytes Extra)
The BLM's Arcata Field Office has been busy getting North Coast youth outdoors, where they could experiencing environments ranging from the coastal tidepools to ancient redwoods. In addition to providing educational opportunities, the outings have given young people a chance to improve their environment.

young volunteers pose with trash they have picked up
America's Great Outdoors logo sports snow-capped peaks"DSES and ESYCC team up with BLM for Long Valley trash cleanup" (News.bytes Extra)
Eight Eastern Sierra Youth Conservation Corps crew members and thirteen Disabled Sports of Eastern Sierra youth and staff spent two hours picking up trash around the heavily used sites "Wild Willy's" and "Hill Top." This is the BLM Bishop Field Office's second year continuing trash clean ups at the hot tub sites. BLM's partnership is in its second year with DSES and fourth year with the ESYCC.

silhouette of a man hanging sideways from rocksa man scrambles up the side of a boulderGET OUTDOORS TIP OF THE WEEK...
...The Volcanic Tableland in the Eastern Sierra offers exceptional bouldering because of its unique geologic features. Thousands of climbers come from all over the world to try out their climbing skills on the many boulder problems the Tableland has to offer. With this dramatic increase in use, the BLM and the local climbing community have developed a climbing management philosophy to protect the natural resources while preserving access to climbing opportunities.

RELATED: "Climbing access to the Tableland" (BLM Bishop Field Office)
snow covers mountains behind a desert areaPopular bouldering sites in the Eastern Sierra are predominantly located in areas with high natural resource values, be it the animal and plant life, or the archeological values to be found there. Responsible access to these areas is important! Please view climbing as a privilege, it entitles you to use the public lands responsibly.


a bat with wings outstretched
pallid bat
What is unusual about the way that the pallid bat feeds?
(a.) It grinds up food in its stomach with pebbles it has swallowed.
(b.) It competes with vultures for desert carrion.
(c.) It eats seeds, instead of the flying insects that most other bats eat.
(d.) It eats mostly from the ground, including scorpions.
(e.) It feeds off of nectar and cactus pulp, instead of insects.
(f.) It places its little bat utensils to the left of its plate, while most bats place them to the right.

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

silhouettes of wild horse and of a burroWILD HORSES AND BURROS

a woman wears a helmet as she rides a horse in the high desert
"Adopted Mustang named to endurance Hall of Fame" (News.bytes Extra)
Robin Hood, a mustang from high desert public land along the California-Nevada border, has reached the pinnacle of recognition in the world of endurance horses. He has been named to the Hall of Fame for the American Endurance
Ride Conference for his outstanding achievements over 15 years of competition. “When we received the award at the AERC conference in Reno I was overcome with emotion," said Dr. Phil Ottinger, who adopted Robin Hood from the Bureau of Land Management in 1993.

This weekend: On Saturday, July 9, the Ridgecrest Regional Wild Horse & Burro Corrals will be hosting an adoption and trail/dinner ride (cost for dinner). Details with last week's News.bytes Extra, "Sammy B. Good."

a Border Patrol agent holds the reins of a horseriders guide their horses around barrels in a corral"Prisoners train wild mustangs to patrol U.S. Border" (NBC News at KUSA, Denver, Colo., 7/5/11)
"For years, prisoners at Texas' Hutchinson Correctional Facility have trained wild horses for adoption, but now for the first time, some of those mustangs will be used to patrol the U.S. border ... 'It's perfect and they love it,' Mary Olivares, with the U.S. Border Patrol, said. 'They get to go out and do what comes naturally to them. They're roaming for eight hours with an agent, then they get to go home and rest.' "

"BLM seeks bids for new pasture facilities to care for and maintain wild horses" (BLM national news, 7/5/11)
As part of its responsibility to manage and protect wild horses and burros, the Bureau of Land Management is soliciting bids for new long-term pasture facilities located in the continental United States that provide a free-roaming environment. The solicitation is for one or more pasture facilities accommodating 800 to 5,000 wild horses.


oil pumping riga solar tower to power oil drilling operations"Looking for oil in Fresno County" (KFSN-TV Fresno, 7/5/11)
"Some oil company officials say California could be holding up to a trillion barrels of oil underground." In Fresno County, Chevron is building a solar power tower "to produce steam, to inject into older wells, and bring up even more oil ... The Bureau of Land Management is putting four parcels of land in Fresno County featuring Monterey Shale, up for auction this September ... Environmentalists say forget the oil boom ... there's a green energy boom. Instead of focusing on more oil, California should be supporting renewable energy like solar and wind power."

"BLM announces availability of oil and gas lease auction environmental assessment"(BLM news, 7/6/11)
The Bureau of Land Management has completed the environmental assessment for an oil and gas lease auction scheduled for December 14. A 30-day public review and comment period runs through August 5. The EA was prepared to analyze the environmental impacts of leasing the mineral estate for oil and gas exploration and development. The lands considered for competitive lease auction are in Kern County.

renewable energy logo"Judge dismisses Sunrise Powerlink suit" (San Diego Union-Tribune, 7/1/11)
"A federal judge has rejected a lawsuit aimed at halting construction of SDG&E's Sunrise Powerlink through East County ... The suit argued that the U.S. Bureau of Land Management and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service failed to fully scrutinize the impact of the project on wildlife, wildfire prevention and related issues. The transmission route includes BLM land."


"Fire burns nearly 500 acres in Humboldt County" (Santa Rosa Press-Democrat, 7/3/11)
"A wildland fire that burned nearly 500 acres in the King Range southwest of Petrolia was contained early Sunday, Cal Fire reported. The fire in the Spanish Flat area of King Range National Conservation Area burned grass and some timberland."

"Two fires hit Victorville" (San Bernardino County Sun, 7/2/11)
"Two brush fires began burning in Victorville early Saturday afternoon, leading area fire departments to reassign firefighters to cover the High Desert." County and BLM firefighters stopped one fire at 10 acres, and a second fire was stopped at five acres. "The pressure on the High Desert and potential for more fires given high temperatures and low humidity led a strike team from Redlands, Colton, Rialto, and San Bernardino City Fire to station themselves in the High Desert."

"National fire news" (National Interagency Fire Center, NIFC)
Current wildfire information, updated Monday - Friday during wildfire season.

"InciWeb" (Incident Information System)
An "interagency all-risk incident information management system."

"Take responsibility..." (California Fire Alliance)
Protect your home. Create 100 feet of defensible space. In California, the number of homes and businesses is growing in the Wildland Urban Interface -- and fire is an increasing threat. Reduce your home's fire danger by taking responsibility today.


stone walls of a miniature "castle"a tank crosses the scaffolding of a temporary bridge"Prisoners left legacy in Desert Southwest" (Yuma Sun, 7/3/11)
"One lasting reminder" of World War II Italian prisoners of war in the Yuma, Ariz. area "silently slumbers" in nearby California, near the Colorado River. "Members of the unit constructed an ornate stone-faced concrete storage shed called the 'Italian castle,' using rock quarried nearby. The shed, constructed to provide cool underground storage for cans of paint, was decorated with stones by masons intent on using their skills ... Many years ago, the Bureau of Land Management erected a brass sign and a wire fence to protect and commemorate the structure."

"New drinking water fountains installed at Fort Ord" (BLM news, 7/6/11)
Thanks to donations by trail users, there are now two operating water fountains at a popular trailhead on the Bureau of Land Management's Fort Ord Public Lands -- and even two pet fountains for dog walkers.

"Suction dredging backers hail Gov. Brown's veto" (Sacramento Bee, 7/3/11)
Gov. Jerry Brown vetoed "an item in the budget bill that would have essentially killed" dredging, "used to mine for gold in river-bottom gravels ... opponents decry the practice as having damaging environmental consequences ... Fish and Game can now finish working on the environmental impact report and associated regulations, though the resumption of dredging is not assured." BLM regulations require compliance with state law.

"Calaveras deputies uproot marijuana plants" (Stockton Record, 7/3/11)
"The Calaveras County Sheriff's Department reports that law officers over the past week found and eradicated 28,141 marijuana plants hidden in six separate gardens on both private land and land managed by the Bureau of Land Management."

"Officials give advice on how to keep valuables safe" (Eureka Times-Standard, 7/3/11)
The Humboldt County Sheriff's Office and the Bureau of Land Management advise visitors to parks and beaches, to take precautions. "Specific areas where vehicles have recently been broken into include the Samoa Beach, Manila Dunes and Mad River Beach parking lots, as well as the trail head parking lot to Headwaters Forest."

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

WILDLIFE TRIVIA answer and related website
(d.) It eats mostly from the ground, including scorpions.

SOURCE: "Pallid Bat - Antrozous pallidus" (BLM California wildlife database)
This is one of the few bat species that specializes in eating off the ground rather than in flight. As a result, their diet is quite different from other bats

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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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