Posted by: Sandy Steinman | July 18, 2021

A Different Kind of Land Management: Let the Cows Stomp 

The New York Timereports

Regenerative grazing can store more carbon in soils in the form of roots and other plant tissues. But how much can it really help the fight against climate change?

We let cattle stomp a lot of the stuff down,” he said. That adds organic matter to the soil and exposes it to oxygen, which will help grasses and other more desirable plants take over. Eventually, through continued careful management of grazing, the pasture will be healthy again.

…healthier ranchland can also aid the planet by sequestering more carbon, in the form of roots and other plant tissues that used carbon dioxide from the air in their growth. Storing this organic matter in the soil will keep the carbon from re-entering the atmosphere as carbon dioxide or methane, two major contributors to global warming.

Read full story at A Different Kind of Land Management: Let the Cows Stomp – The New York Times

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | July 17, 2021

eBird Best Practices : Help Center

from eBird

Your eBird observations make a huge difference in our understanding of birds at many levels—from making more information available for birdwatchers to eBird Science use. Below are our tips to help make your eBirding as valuable as possible for science and conservation. For more details on maximizing the value of your checklists, take a look at our brief, free eBird Essentials course at eBird Best Practices : Help Center

The Guardian reports

Maine has enacted a groundbreaking law that will ban the use of toxic PFAS compounds in all products by 2030, except in instances deemed “currently unavoidable”.

Though states and the federal government have passed piecemeal laws regulating the dangerous chemicals’ use, Maine is the nation’s first state and world’s first government to enact a broad prohibition on the class of about 9,000 compounds, which are dubbed “forever chemicals” because they don’t fully break down and accumulate in the environment and humans.

Read more at Maine bans toxic ‘forever chemicals’ under groundbreaking new law | Maine | The Guardian

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | July 15, 2021

5th Annual America’s State Parks photo contest

from Antelope Valley Poppy Preserve
Show your talent and love for California State Parks by entering the 5th Annual America’s State Parks photo contest  Check out the latest Weekly Digest for entry details and more parks’ stories at

NPR reports

The Perseid Meteor Shower is upon us, and will fill the night sky with streaks of light and color until August 24.

Known as the “best meteor shower of the year” by NASA because of its fast, bright and plentiful meteors that can be easily viewed outside during the warm summer months, the shower is not one to be missed. It will peak around August 12, where up to 100 meteors an hour can be caught shooting across the sky at 37 miles per second, leaving long streaks in their wake.

Read how to see it at Perseid Meteor Shower Has Started; The Show Continues Into August : NPR

The N. Y. Times reports

The microscopic animals were frozen when woolly mammoths still roamed the planet, but were restored as though no time had passed.

Bdelloid rotifers may be the toughest, tiniest animal you’ve never heard of.The microscopic, multicellular creatures have complex anatomies and are one of the planet’s most radiation-resistant animals. They can withstand extreme acidity, starvation, low oxygen and years of dehydration.

Read more at This Tiny Creature Survived 24,000 Years Frozen in Siberian Permafrost – The New York Times

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | July 14, 2021

July 17 to 25 is Latino Conservation Week 

Latino Conservation Week: Disfrutando y Conservando Nuestra Tierra is an initiative of Hispanic Access Foundation (HAF). Latino Conservation Week was created to support the Latino community getting into the outdoors and participating in activities to protect our natural resources.During this week, community, non-profit, faith-based, and government organizations and agencies hold events throughout the country. From hiking and camping to community roundtables and film screenings, these activities promote conservation efforts in their community, and provide an opportunity for Latinos to show their support for permanently protecting our land, water, and air.

Learn more at  Latino Conservation Week :: A Hispanic Access Foundation Initiative – About LCW

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | July 13, 2021

Female Bird Song 7/15/21

from Golden Gate Audubon

Listen to Her Sing Featuring Nathan Pieplow
Thursday, July 15 7 p.m. via Zoom Free

Only male birds sing, right? WRONG! In fact, this widepread notion has a lot more to do with human cultural and geographic biases than it has to do with nature. In this presentation, Nathan Pieplow explores the often-overlooked songs of female birds. You’ll hear the pair duets of meadowlarks and blackbirds, the musical songs of female cardinals and orioles, and the distinctive song of the female Canyon Wren. In which species do females sing more often than males? And where did we even get this crazy idea that only male birds sing? Nathan Pieplow is author of The Peterson Field Guide to Bird Sounds, the most comprehsneive guide to the sounds of North American birds. He lives in Boulder, Colorado, where he teaches writing and rhetoric at the University of Colorado and helped develop the Colorado Birding Trail. 

 To join this event on your computer or other device:

HTTPS://ZOOM.US/J/96578291039?PWD=WITJRVZTSMDBC2TKOFDWWNHSCXY5QT09Passcode: 523038A video recording of this program will be available until August 1st: See the Education/Past Speaker Series section of our web site a couple of days after the event.

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | July 13, 2021

Record number of manatees die in Florida as food source dries up 

The Guardian reports

More manatees have died already this year than in any other year in Florida’s recorded history, primarily from starvation due to the loss of seagrass beds, state officials have said.

The Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission reported that 841 manatee deaths were recorded between 1 January and 2 July, breaking the previous record of 830 that died during the whole of 2013 because of an outbreak of toxic red tide.

Read more at  Record number of manatees die in Florida as food source dries up | Wildlife | The Guardian

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | July 12, 2021

Job Openings: Gardener Positions At Regional Parks Botanic Garden

Two Gardener positions available at the Regional Parks Botanic Garden (RPBG) in Tilden Regional Park in the Berkeley Hills. One is a full-time position and the other is currently a nine-month position (that runs from March 1 through November 30 each year). The RPBG was officially founded on January 1, 1940, though some of the oldest plantings date back to at least the early 1930s. The Botanic Garden occupies 10 acres in Wildcat Canyon, with Wildcat Creek bisecting the Garden. The Garden is composed of the plants of the state of California and of the California Floristic Province (stretching from southwestern Oregon to northwestern Baja California). Starting pay for these positions is $31.74/hour (that translates to $66,019.20/year for the FTE, and $49,514.40/year for the 3/4 FTE) and excellent benefits.
Posted by: Sandy Steinman | July 12, 2021

Job Opportunity: Restoration Intern

1500 North College Avenue, Claremont, CA 91711-3157 · Phone 909-625-8767 · Fax 909 626-7670

TITLE: Restoration Intern  DEPARTMENT: Conservation Program
STATUS: Full time hourly (Temporary, 6 months)
REPORTS TO: Restoration Project Manager
DESIRED SCHEDULE: Wednesday – Saturday (Four 10 hour days)

Position Overview:

The Restoration Intern will work closely with the Seed Program and Nursery staff on rare/common plant seed banking and propagation/reintroduction contracts. Major duties will include field collections of seeds and cuttings, seed processing, plant propagation and maintenance. Approximately 10-20% of the time will be spent outdoors in rugged terrain. This will be an opportunity to work closely with multiple agencies (national forests, environmental consulting firms, etc.), and to develop hands-on knowledge of collection and propagation of wild plants. The intern must approach all tasks with respect for natural, cultural and fiscal resources, co-workers, volunteers, partner agencies, and organizations. This is a full time seasonal position (40 hours a week), that may require overnight stays in rugged terrain.
This is primarily a nursery based propagation position.
Read More…

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | July 12, 2021

The 20 best hikes we’ve done in California in the past year

The San Francisco Chronicle writes about 20 favorite hikes this past year at  The 20 best hikes we’ve done in California in the past year

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | July 11, 2021

Bats of Mendocino 7/13/21 at 3 pm

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | July 11, 2021

Poison Ivy: What You May Not Know 

The New York Times reports on the many aspects of Poison Ivy. Much of what is included in this article also applies to Poison Oak and Poison Sumac as they are closely related.

What You May Not Know About Poison Ivy Sure, it’s irritating.

But this unpopular native plant also has underappreciated superpowers. Here’s how to deal with it.

Read more at Poison Ivy: What You May Not Know 

National Moth Week celebrates the beauty, life cycles, and habitats of moths. “Moth-ers” of all ages and abilities are encouraged to learn about, observe, and document moths in their backyards, parks, and neighborhoods. National Moth Week is being held, worldwide, during the last full week of July. NMW offers everyone, everywhere a unique opportunity to become a Citizen Scientist and contribute scientific data about moths. Through partnerships with major online biological data depositories, NMW participants can help map moth distribution and provide needed information on other life history aspects around the globe.

Learn more and register at National Moth Week – Exploring Nighttime Nature

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | July 10, 2021

How Kangaroos Communicate With People 

The New York Times reports

Researchers say that kangaroos are the first wild animals to exhibit interspecies communication that is more commonly seen in animals that have evolved alongside humans.

Kangaroos can communicate with humans similar to the way dogs, horses and goats do despite never having been domesticated.

The study suggests a higher level of intelligence in the Australian marsupials than had been assumed.

Read article at ‘A Social Species’: How Kangaroos Communicate With People 

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | July 9, 2021

California oil regulators deny new fracking permits

The San Diego Union-Tribune reports

California denied 21 oil drilling permits this week in the latest move toward ending fracking in a state that makes millions from the petroleum industry but is seeing widespread drought and more dangerous fire seasons linked to climate change.

Read more at California oil regulators deny new fracking permits – The San Diego Union-Tribune

The Guardian reports

An area of forest the size of France has regrown around the world over the past 20 years, showing that regeneration in some places is paying off, a new analysis has found.

Nearly 59m hectares of forests have regrown since 2000, the research found, providing the potential to soak up and store 5.9 gigatonnes of carbon dioxide – more than the annual emissions of the entire US.

Read more at  Forest the size of France regrown worldwide over 20 years, study finds | Trees and forests | The Guardian

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | July 8, 2021

Job Opening: Preserve Manager – San Diego County 

Center for Natural Lands Management Preserve Manager – San Diego County

Open until filled, but for fullest consideration please apply as soon as possible and no later than July 24, 2021

PDF of position description available here

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | July 8, 2021

Tejon Ranch Development and Fire Risk

The Guardian has a story about the battle between California developers who want to build a development at Tejon branch, conservationists who want to protect the land and the high fire risk of such a development.

California developers want to build a city in the wildlands. It could all go up in flames

Tejon Ranch Company says its plan to build 20,000 homes would help the housing crisis. Experts warn it could put people in danger.


About an hour’s drive north of Los Angeles lies one of the last remaining pieces of the truly wild, wild west.

The 270,000-acre Tejon Ranch is dotted with centuries-old native oaks. Endangered mountain lions roam the grounds, and California condors soar above it. Rains paint the hills bright orange with poppies, and purple with lupine. But in the summer, and during drought years, the landscape dries to a shimmering gold. A small group of cowboys still run cattle here.

Soon all of it could go up in smoke, scientists and climate activists fear.

Read more at California developers want to build a city in the wildlands. It could all go up in flames – The Guardian



Anthropocene reports

In the most comprehensive study to date, researchers found that greener farming methods don’t compromise yields

In 63% of cases, they found that eco-friendly farming boosted biodiversity without any cost to yields. In several cases, yields actually increased

Read story at  In the most comprehensive study to date, researchers found that greener farming methods don’t compromise yields

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | July 7, 2021

Job Opening: CNPS Is Hiring an Executive Director

Reporting to the Board of Directors, the Executive Director (ED) serves as the lead executive of the organization, responsible for the implementation of the strategic goals in alignment with the mission, vision, and values of CNPS. In collaboration with staff, more specific areas of responsibility include fundraising; budgeting; Board and Chapter Council support and relations; organizational operations; partner cultivation and stewardship; and staff leadership, support, and management.

The ED shall navigate the complex organizational structure of CNPS by establishing and maintaining a highly collaborative approach to management and program development that emphasizes cooperation, communication, delegation, and mutual trust.

The ED will directly manage seven Program Directors (Senior Operations Director, Senior Director of Public Affairs, Development Director, Conservation Director, Director of Biodiversity Initiatives, Rare Plant Director and Vegetation Director), and lead a growing staff of thirty-five (35) full-time employees.

The full job announcement and application instructions can be found here.

from Los Padres ForestWatch
After discovering and reporting abandoned oil equipment in a remote area of the Carrizo Plain National Monument in 2018, we’re pleased to announce that the oil company responsible has completely removed the derelict oil tanks and other debris! We’re glad that the Bureau of Land Management took our report seriously and ordered the oil company to conduct this important restoration work.
Posted by: Sandy Steinman | July 7, 2021

Lichens Slow to Return After Wildfire

from UC Davis

Lichen communities may take decades — and in some cases up to a century — to fully return to chaparral ecosystems after wildfire, finds a study from the University of California, Davis, and Stanford University.

The study, published today in the journal Diversity and Distributions, is the most comprehensive to date of long-term lichen recolonization after fire.

Unlike conifer forests, chaparral systems in California are historically adapted to high-intensity fires — they burn hot, fast and tend to regenerate quickly. However, with more frequent fires predicted under a drier, warming climate and more ignitions occurring amid a growing human population in these areas, the study indicates that lichen communities may not receive the window of opportunity they need to return to chaparral shrublands after wildfire.

Read more at  Lichens Slow to Return After Wildfire | UC Davis

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | July 6, 2021


GreenLatinos is a national non-profit organization that convenes a broad coalition of Latino leaders committed to addressing national, regional and local environmental, natural resources and conservation issues that significantly affect the health and welfare of the Latino community in the United States. GreenLatinos develops and advocates for policies and programs to advance this mission.

NPR reports

Octopuses have alternating periods of “quiet” and “active” sleep that make their rest similar to that of mammals, despite being separated by more than 500 million years of evolution.

During their active periods of sleep, octopuses’ skin color changes and their bodies twitch, according to a report in the journal iScience, and they might even have short dreams.

Read more Octopuses, Like People, Seem To Have Active Stages Of Sleep, May Dream : NPR

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | July 4, 2021

6 great nest cams you should watch this summer

Birdlife  magazine writes about 6 great nest cams you should watch this summer at 6 great nest cams you should watch this summer | BirdLife

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | July 4, 2021

How the monkeyflower gets its spots

from Berkeley News

The intricate spotted patterns dappling the bright blooms of the monkeyflower plant may be a delight to humans, but they also serve a key function for the plant. These patterns act as “bee landing pads,” attracting nearby pollinators to the flower and signaling the best approach to access the sweet nectar inside.

“They are like runway landing lights, helping the bees orient so they come in right side up instead of upside down,” said Benjamin Blackman, assistant professor of plant and molecular biology at the University of California, Berkeley.

Read more at Source: How the monkeyflower gets its spots | Berkeley News

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | July 3, 2021

Sonoma Land Trust Virtual Outings And Events 

See the upcoming Sonoma Land Trust Virtual Outing at Sonoma Land Trust Hosted Outings And Events – Join Us On The Land

Posted by: Sandy Steinman | July 3, 2021

Invasive alien species exact huge ecosystem cost

Climate News Network reports

At last, a global price on invasive alien species: it runs to billions of dollars and doubles every six years.

French scientists have put a value on the cost of ecosystem destruction by often almost invisible newcomers: the damage invasive alien species do, and the price of containing that damage, has already passed the US$1.28 trillion mark in less than 50 years.

That’s because the annual toll imposed by cats, rats and mice, boll weevils, gipsy moths, African bees, red imported fire ants and other unwelcome migrants has averaged $26.8 billion a year from 1970 to 2017, and has been doubling every six years, and trebling every decade.

Source: Invasive alien species exact huge ecosystem cost | Climate News Network

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