About these ads
Posted by: Sandy Steinman | August 27, 2014

Rare Blue Lobster Found

The Independent reported on the finding of a rare blue lobster found by a Maine lobsterman and his daughter. The lobster was sent to the Maine State Aquarium. Blue Lobsters are the result of a genetic defect and occur in one lobster out of two million.

Read story and see photo at: Rare blue lobster found off US coast – Americas – World – The Independent

 

About these ads
Posted by: Sandy Steinman | August 27, 2014

Solving Mysteries Of Semipalmated Sandpiper Migration

Shorebird Science has an article about the use of geolocators to learn about the migratory routes of Semipalmated Sandpipers. They report that

Surveys conducted by the New Jersey Audubon Society have shown an 80% decline over the past 20 years in numbers within the core wintering range in northern South America. At the same time, data from the Arctic show that breeding populations are apparently stable at some sites, especially in the western part of the arctic breeding range in Alaska. We need to understand the migratory pathways of the species in order to know where the decline is occurring, and what can be done to reverse it. Light-level geolocators are a cutting edge technology and their use has helped revolutionize our understanding of shorebird migration, but they have never been used on Semipalmated Sandpipers before this project.

They trace the migratory path of one bird’s migratory route in detail to show what is being learned by the geolocators .

Read the full story at The Remarkable Odyssey of a Semipalmated Sandpiper | Shorebird Science.

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | August 26, 2014

Blue Ridge Parkway Wildflowers 8/25/14

Blue Ridge Parkways Journeys has a new wildflower report for late August

This time of year, visitors to the Blue Ridge Parkway can expect to see many of the common summer varieties of our beautiful blooming flowers.

In Virginia at the north end of the Parkway, near Milepost 30, Queen Anne’s Lace, Spotted Knapweed, Black-Eyed Susan, Goldenrod, Ironweed, Yarrow, Common Fleabane, White Snakeroot, Pokeweed, Flower Spurge, Small Wood Sunflower, Red Clover, Jewelweed, Coreopsis, and Chicory are all blooming.

In North Carolina between Moses Cone and the Linn Cove Viaduct, there are reports of blooming Sourwood, Thinleaf Sunflower, Snakeroot, Beebalm, White Bergamot, Coneflower, Tall Bellflower, Queen Anne’s Lace, Red Clover, Daisy Fleabane, Yarrow, Large-flowered Coreopsis, Spotted Knapweed, Bull Thistle, and Phlox.

Further south, between Linville Falls and the Minerals Museum, there are blooming Black-Eyed Susan, Goldenrod, Joe Pye Weed, Foxglove, Jewelweed, Morning Glories, and Mullein.

Heading south on the Parkway from Asheville, we have blooms of Sourwood, Black-eyed Susan, Coreopsis, Heal-all, Joe Pye Weed, Jewelweed, Coneflower, White Snakeroot, Wideleaf Sunflower, Calico Aster, Evening Primrose, Mullein, and Goldenrod

 

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | August 26, 2014

Eastern Sierra Fall Color 8/26/14

Calphoto has an early eastern sierra fall color report

Rabbitbrush is starting to turn bright yellow. Willows turning yellow at about 8000 feet. Aspens still green.

Follow postings at Calphoto. (Must register to access site.)

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | August 26, 2014

San Gabriels Considered For National Monument Status

The LA Times reported that President Obama is considering a plan to designate the San Gabriel Mountains a national monument.

Read story at Obama weighs national monument status for San Gabriels – LA Times.

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | August 26, 2014

Urban Bee Gardening App

Bay Nature has an article on a new iPad app. It if reference for tool to create  urban wild bee gardens. Bay Nature reports

new iPad app, Wild Bee Gardening, draws on the knowledge of native bee experts like Dr. Gordon Frankie and Dr. Claire Kremen of UC Berkeley, and Dr. Robin Thorpe of UC Davis, to bring native bee conservation and gardening into the digital realm. The app provides an extensive reference tool for city dwellers to create their own residential bee gardens and outlines the increasing necessity of supporting native bees and their pollinating services.

Read full article at Gardening for Wild Bees? Now Theres an App for That « Bay Nature.

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | August 25, 2014

First Illustrated World Bird Checklist

I recently posted about the large number of new bird species: Over 400 New Bird Species! | Natural History Wanderings.

Lynx Edicíons and BirdLife International have published the first ever Illustrated Checklist of the Birds of the World that is the information source about the new species.  The Illustrated Checklist uses new criteria and recognised 462 new species which were previously treated as ‘races’ of other forms. The new total of 4,549 non-passerines implies that earlier classifications have undersold avian diversity at the species level by as much as 10%. Read more at: BirdLife and Lynx publish first ever illustrated world bird checklist | BirdLife.

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | August 25, 2014

Lake Lagunitas Wildflower Report 8/22/14

Recent Wildflower Reports – CNPS Marin has a new wildflower report for Lake Lagunitas

 even though plants were going to seed, some were still in flower including the following.Heterotheca sessiliflora ssp. bolanderi Bolanders golden-aster, Holocarpha virgata ssp. virgata wand tarplant, Perideridia gairdneri ssp. gairdneri Gairdners yampah.They also saw a fine Quercus kelloggii black oak with acorns, and coming back along the Fairfax-Bolinas Road, the Stephanomeria virgata ssp. pleurocarpa was in flower.

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | August 25, 2014

Great Smoky Mountains Wildflower Updates 8/22/14

Great Smoky Mountains Association has new wildflower reports:

Middle Prong B-E – White Top Aster, Pale Jewelweed, Heal All, Love Vine and Yellow Wood Sorrell.

Greenbrier Ridge B-E – Doll Eyes berries, White Top Aster, Wood Nettle, Love Vine, White Snakeroot, Pale Jewelweed, Crimson Bee Balm, Wild Golden Glow, Joe Pye Weed, Golden Rod Erect and Indian Pipe 1.

See older reports at Wildflower Updates | Great Smoky Mountains Association.

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | August 25, 2014

U.S. Government Weakens Endangered Species Act

The New York Times has an opinion piece an how the federal government now has a new interpretation of the Endangered Species Act that significants weakens its ability to protect endangered species. Under the new interpretation

The law’s protections, for practical purposes, will be applied only if a species is at risk of extinction in a vital read, significant portion of its range where its loss would put the entire species at risk of extinction. And the concept of range no longer takes into account its historical distribution but defines the concept in terms of where the species is found now.

This means that as long as a small, geographically isolated population remains viable, it won’t matter if the animal or plant in question has disappeared across the vast swath of its former habitat. It won’t qualify for protection.

This interpretation threatens to reduce the Endangered Species Act to a mechanism that merely preserves representatives of a species, like curating rare pieces in a museum.

Read full article at:  Conservation, or Curation? – NYTimes.com.

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | August 25, 2014

All Penguin Species At Risk Of Habitat Loss

YubaNet reported a study published by the British Antarctic Survey that found all penguin species are at risk due to habitat destruction. There have been major population declines of many penguin species in the last two decades. The article reports

scientists recommend the adoption of measures to mitigate against a range of effects including; food scarcity (where fisheries compete for the same resources), being caught in fishing nets, oil pollution and climate change. This could include the establishment of marine protected areas, although the authors acknowledge this might not always be practical. A number of other ecologically based management methods could also be implemented.

Read full article at YubaNet Study: All penguin species at continuing risk from habitat degradation

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | August 24, 2014

Birding & Photos Emeryville Shoreline 8/24/14

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Today we went birding along the Emeryville Shoreline. We went along the shoreline from the police station to Chinese restaurant, along the point and by the Marina.

Our primary goals was to see what birds might be along the rocky shoreline south of the road where birds like to “hang out” during high tide. We saw a large number of Willets, about a dozen Marbled Godwits”, at least three Whimbrel and no “peeps”. Later in the year the numbers of birds and species will no doubt increase.

Highlights of the day were seeing a Common Murre, Red-throated Loon and Ruby-crowned Kinglet. All are considered rare for this site at this time of year according to eBird. We also saw a group of nine Black Oystercatchers out on the end of a pier at the Marina. (We have seen them there before but in smaller numbers).

The total number of species identified was twenty-two which was more than we expected. To see today’s list go to Bird List for Emeryville Shoreline 8/24/14

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | August 24, 2014

Free National Park Entrance Tomorrow 8/25/14

Monday August 25, 2014  National Park entrance fees are waived in honor of  the National Park Service’s birthday. The Park Service turns 98 years old.

Read more at U.S. National Park Service Its our birthday!.

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | August 24, 2014

California Earthquake

3:20 am this morning I felt an earthquake. I live in Berkeley about 25 miles from the epicenter of the quake. It had a rolling quality and didn’t feel very strong compared to some quakes based in Berkeley that were only 4.0 so I didn’t think it was that strong. An hour later I got up, looked on the internet and was surprised to find that it was a 6.0 quake with some injuries and damage. There are many stories about the quake on the web so I won’t repeat information about the damage and injuries. What you may not have seen is which fault it actually was (not yet absolutely clear yet) and what causes a quake. You can read about that at What Caused California’s Napa Valley Earthquake? Faults Explained

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | August 24, 2014

Nature Blog Network: A Eulogy

I have recently been unable to get on the Nature Blog Network. I did some research and found out that the site is permanently down. It was killed by Spam registrations. The 10,000 Birds blog reported

The bad guys have won. Our decrepit toplist software, which just didn’t keep up with the times, couldn’t hold up under the assault of literally thousands of spam registrations. At first we couldn’t approve new members. Now we can’t even log in. Worst of all, the toplist isn’t showing up. The damage is, as far as I can tell, irreparable.

As a result, I’ll be pulling the plug on the Nature Blog Network and taking the whole thing down.

Read full story at: 10,000 Birds | Nature Blog Network: A Eulogy.

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | August 24, 2014

Washington Using HelicoptersTo Kill Wolves

Press Release Center for Biological Diversity

Washington Department of Wildlife Secretly Sends Aerial Gunners for Wolf Pack

Agency Sends Helicopter to Gun Down Huckleberry Pack Despite Assurances to
Rely on Nonlethal Means to Curb Loss of Livestock

OLYMPIA, Wash.— Conservation groups learned today that the Washington Department of Wildlife has abandoned nonlethal measures to deter further loss of sheep and instead use a helicopter to gun down members of the Huckleberry wolf pack. The groups learned that the department was unsuccessful today, but plans to return at first light Sunday in southeast Stevens County.

Huckleberry pack pups
Photo of Huckleberry pack pups courtesy Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife.

“The department’s secretive weekend assault on this endangered wolf pack goes beyond the pale,” said Amaroq Weiss, West Coast wolf organizer with the Center for Biological Diversity. “It’s unconscionable that a public agency would take action to kill an endangered species without notifying the public. These wolves belong to the public and decisions about whether they live or die ought to be made in the clear light of day.”

Read More…

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | August 24, 2014

Cape Hatteras Wildlife Win Court Battle

Audubon Magazine reports tha ta law limiting off-road vehicle ORV access to the beach at Cape Hatteras National Seashore will stay in place, due to a June ruling by the Eastern District Court of North Carolina.  The law which was designed to protect vulnerable wildlife  on the coast had been challenged by a group of ORV enthusiasts hoping to gain access to the beach.

Read story at Wildlife Advocates Score a Win at Cape Hatteras | Audubon Magazine.

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | August 23, 2014

Over 400 New Bird Species!

Science Magazine reports that the first illustrated global bird classification revealed 426 new bird species. The classification is the result of subspecies being reevaluated and recognized as unique species. This includes 46 new species of parrots, 36 new hummingbirds, and 26 new owls.

Read full article at  First-ever illustrated global bird classification reveals 400 new species | Science/AAAS | News.

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | August 23, 2014

Lawsuit Protect Yuma Clapper Rails From Desert Solar

Press Release Center for Biological Diversity

Lawsuit Launched to Protect Endangered California Birds From Large-scale Desert Solar Projects

BLYTHE, Calif.— The Center for Biological Diversity today filed a notice of intent to sue the U.S. Department of the Interior for failing to protect Yuma clapper rails, which are endangered marsh birds, from being killed or injured by large-scale solar projects in the California and Arizona deserts.

In less than a year, two Yuma clapper rails have died at industrial-scale solar projects built on known bird-migration corridors on public lands in the California desert. Only 440 to 968 of these birds remain along the lower Colorado River and the Salton Sea — areas where much of the industrial-scale solar development is occurring and more is proposed in Riverside and Imperial counties.

Read More…

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | August 22, 2014

Birding Albany Bulb & Mudflats 8/22/14

Today we went birding at the Albany Bulb and the south end of the Albany Mudflats.  The highlight was seeing two Red-necked Phalaropes riding the waves that were pointed out by friends who were birding the area, and an Osprey flying overhead. We identified bird 22 species and saw three butterfly species (Cabbage White, Anise Swallowtail and West Coast Lady).

Today”s bird list: Albany Bulb and Mudflats bird list 8/22/14

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | August 22, 2014

San Francisco Effort Stop Residential Bird-Window Collisions

Golden Gate  Audubon  has  a new blog post  Golden Gate Audubon Society » New SF program to prevent residential bird collisions about the San Francisco program to decrease  bird-window collisions in private residences.

  • The City Planning Department is sponsoring a new, voluntary Bird-Friendly Monitoring and Certification Program  that will: Recruit city residents to monitor the incidence of bird-window collisions around their home.
  • Help residents with large or hazardous windows to take steps to reduce the risk of collisions.

To learn more about the program go to http://goldengateaudubon.org/wp-content/uploads/SF-Bird-Friendly-Certification-1.pdf

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | August 22, 2014

2014 San Francisco Butterfly Count

Save Mount Sutro Forest reported on the 2014 S.F. Butterfly Count. The top three Butterflies were Cabbage White, Common Checkered Skipper and Common Buckeye. They reported

spotters found 24 species of butterfly, with 777 individual butterflies. They identified 734 by species a few could only be identified by family. This is slightly better than last year, though down from the boom years of 2011 and 2012. No rarities were spotted this year, but the Woodland Skipper made a reappearance from 2012.SF BUTTERFLY Count

 

https://savesutro.files.wordpress.com/2014/07/sf-butterfly-count.png?w=500

See full report at San Francisco Butterflies – Count Results for 2014 | Save Mount Sutro Forest.

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | August 21, 2014

Feds to Consider Translocating Bears to North Cascades National Park

Press Release Center for Biological Diversity

Feds to Consider Translocating Bears to North Cascades National Park

One Month After Center Files Petition to Expand Grizzly Bear Recovery Feds Take Action

WASHINGTON— The National Park Service this week took an important step toward recovering grizzly bears in the North Cascades in Washington state. The agency says it is beginning a three-year process to analyze options for boosting grizzly bear populations in the area, including the possibility of translocating bears and developing a viable population.

Read More…

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | August 21, 2014

Poaching Could Lead Extinction Africa Elephants In 100 Yrs.

BBC  reported on how poaching may lead to the extinction of Africa elephants. They reported

Africas elephants have reached a tipping point: more are being killed each year than are being born, a study suggests.Researchers believe that since 2010 an average of nearly 35,000 elephants have been killed annually on the continent.They warn that if the rate of poaching continues, the animals could be wiped out in 100 years.

Read story at: BBC News – Elephant poaching deaths reach tipping point in Africa.

Media Release American Bird Conservancy

Declining Warbler, 300+ Other Birds to Benefit from Ecuador Land Protection

Narupa Reserve Expansion Provides More Winter Habitat for Cerulean Warbler

Cerulean Warbler by Greg Lavaty

(Washington, D.C., August 6, 2014) The Cerulean Warbler—one of the Americas’ fastest-declining migratory birds—now has more protected wintering habitat in Ecuador, thanks to a cooperative effort by Fundación Jocotoco, American Bird Conservancy, March Conservation Fund, and World Land Trust that safeguards rain forest at elevations preferred by the species.

Ecuador’s Narupa Reserve now totals 1,871 acres, including a new 117-acre parcel within the reserve in addition to a recently acquired 90-acre adjacent property.

Situated in the province of Napo at elevations ranging from 3,300 to 5,250 feet, the reserve includes Andean foothill rain forest with a remarkable convergence of lowland and highland wildlife species. Narupa Reserve, which is named for an elegant species of palm, is in the buffer zone of the Sumaco Napo-Galeras National Park and Antisana Ecological Reserve, which together protect 833,000 acres ranging from humid foothill forest to high Andean grasslands.

Read More…

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | August 19, 2014

2014 Yosemite National Park Butterfly Count

Yosemite National Park recently posted the results of their annual butterfly count. They found a total of 40 butterfly species composed of 680 individuals. The 3 most frequently detected butterflies were sandhill skipper 133 individuals, Shasta blue 102 individuals, and greenish blue 72 individuals. Of all the species detected, five were new species Becker’s white, sylvan hairstreak, reakirts blue, common wood-nymph, and common checkered-skipper never before observed during a Yosemite Butterfly Count.

See full article  Annual Yosemite National Park Butterfly Count – Yosemite National Park U.S. National Park Service.

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | August 19, 2014

UK Pintail Duck Population Decreased 50% Since 2006

I recently wrote about the  Large Decline in UK Wading Birds.  Birdwatch Magazine reports that  Northern Pintail are Britain’s fastest-declining ducks  The numbers of wintering Northern Pintail  in the UK has declined by 60% since 2006. Read story at Pintail declining in Britain | News | Birdwatch Magazine.

 

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | August 18, 2014

August Photos In The Botanic Garden

I was at the Regional Parks Botanic Garden in Tilden Park in Berkeley, CA today. It was one of those in between seasons times of the year. There is early foliage color, berries and late season flowers.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

 

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | August 18, 2014

Central Valley Birding Symposium Nov. 20 to 23, 2013

The 16th Annual Central Valley Birding Symposium is November 21 to 24, 2013.  It  will be held at the Stockton Hilton Hotel. It includes field trips, workshops and presentations. Keynote speakers are:

  • Ed Harper”A Passion for Shorebirds
  • Nat Seavy “From Flood to Drought: A Bird’s-Eye View of Water Management in the Central Valley
  • Joel Greenberg “The Ecoes of their Wings: The Life and Legacy of the Passenger Pigeon”

Registration is now open. Register early to get a better choice of programs. For more information and registration go to:  18th Annual Central Valley Birding Symposium – 2014

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | August 17, 2014

Photos From Eastshore State Park- Updated

Updated with bird list and slideshow corrected

Today we went birding in Eastshore State Park. We also saw a number of Butterflies, Wildflowers (native and exotic), a Black-tailed Hare and California Ground Squirrels. The best birds were the first Semi-palmated Plover of the Season, Forster’s Terns diving for fish, a White-tailed Kite on its usual tree in Berkeley Meadow and a pair of  Black Oystercatcher.  We identified 23 species plus swallows and a LBB (Little Brown Bird) we couldn’t ID. Eastshore State Park Bird List 8/17/14

We had good looks and photos of Buckeyes, Gray Hairstreaks, Anise Swallowtails, and Cabbage Whites. Flowers still in bloom included Fennel, Gumplant, California Poppy, Morning Glory, Lizard tail, Zauschneria, Buckwheat and Yarrow.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Older Posts »

Categories

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 448 other followers

%d bloggers like this: