Archive for the ‘birding’ Category
Advocates Push to Make Stornetta Public Lands Part of CCNM
—Posted Monday, April 8th, 2013 at 7:29 am—
Advocates are actively pursuing extending California Coastal National Monument (CCNM) status to the 1,132-acre Stornetta Public Lands in Point Arena either through legislation or executive decision.
But even without the status, this is a great place for a walk, especially when the waterfall is running. And, it’s only a half mile from the Point Arena Lighthouse, another must-see destination on your Mendocino Coast Visit.
The Santa Rosa Press Democrat recently wrote the following:
One way or another, they’re working to ensure the federally owned property — with its chiseled cliffs, blowholes, waterfalls and aweinspiring vistas — gains the added protection and visibility that would come with nationalmonument standing. “It just raises the level of care that the property gets, and public access, to an entirely new level,” said Winston Bowen, president of the Mendocino Land Trust.
“To my knowledge, there is no known opposition to this,” said Richard Burns, field manager with the Bureau of Land Management.
Visitors already are free to hike the former Stornetta Brothers Coastal Ranch under a $7.8 million conservation deal struck in 2004 that converted the property to federal ownership under the jurisdiction of the BLM.
Monument status would provide improved access to money for purposes such as trail development and maintenance, or possibly permanent bathrooms, as well as a higher level of protection for wildlife and habitat, advocates said.
Whales and First Day Hikes Start January 1
—Posted Saturday, December 24th, 2011 at 10:27 am—
Migrating California Gray whales, numbering between 18,000–23,000 individuals, pass by the Mendocino coast twice each year. Here are several ways you can check out the whales and other wildlife along the Mendocino Coast, thanks to State Parks.
FIRST DAY WALKS: California State Parks announces guided interpretive hikes at 4 state parks along the Mendocino Coast on January 1, 2012. These hikes are part of a nationwide effort of special hikes on New Years Day in state parks in all 50 states. This will promote state parks and participation in healthy activities. All of these hikes will take place on California’s North Coast in wintertime. Be prepared for cool temperatures.
WALK #1: Westport-Union Landing State Beach. Meet the docent at 1:00 p.m. at the park headquarters building at park main entrance, just west of Hwy 1. The park is located about 19 miles north of Fort Bragg, California on Hwy 1. This will be a 1 mile long moderate hike. This hike is suggested for children 8 years and older, and adults. Learn fun facts about the once bustling town of Westport from local resident Steve Brigham.
WALK #2: MacKerricher State Park. Meet the docent at 10:00 a.m. at the Laguna Point parking lot, from Mill Creek Road, three miles north of Fort Bragg, California, west of Hwy 1. This will be an easy three-quarter-mile walk along a boardwalk. This short walk will be filled with fun facts about MacKerricher State Park as you walk to an overlook above the ocean. Park Naturalist Teresa Hurray will lead this walk. The walk is suggested for children 12 years and older, and adults.
Cormorant Count Attests to Healthy Ocean
—Posted Monday, August 10th, 2009 at 7:30 pm—
Internationally-known birder, photographer and wildlife biologist Ron LeValley of Fort Bragg says a local group has initiated a “citizen science project” (not official, just something created by interested locals) to monitor three populations of nesting cormorants on the Mendocino Coast.
Why? By monitoring seabird populations you can measure the health of the ocean and determine whether there is sufficient food to sustain birds and marine life, says LeValley. He and others in the volunteer-staffed science project are counting and photographing cormorant nests and chicks weekly off Mendocino Headlands State Park (Brandt’s Cormorants), Point Cabrillo Light Station (Pelagic Cormorants) and Noyo Harbor off the jetty (Brand’s Cormorants).
In the past — for decades actually — scientists have measured the bird populations at the Farallon and Alcatraz Islands and then extrapoled about the ocean’s food supplies and health, according to LeValley
“If we took those traditional measures as our guide, we would arrive at the wrong conclusion because reproduction around San Francisco Bay is the worst in a long time,” says LeValley. “By contrast, our local colonies are thriving, indicating a healthy ocean.” A healthy population of sardines is reflected in the bumper crop of baby cormorants this year.
LeValley predicts that the Mendocino Coast will become an important place for gathering information about seabird success and state’s ocean health in the future. In fact, he plans to make a presentation of the local group’s study at the 2010 international meeting of the Pacific Seabird Group in Long Beach, California.
State Parks Offers Summer Programs
—Posted Friday, June 19th, 2009 at 8:38 pm—
Docent Led Hikes at Jug Handle State Reserve
Join California State Parks for guided Ecological Staircase hikes every other Thursday this summer. Hikes are scheduled for June 18, July 2, July 16, July 30, August 13 and August 27. All hikes start at 10:00 a.m. and end at 2:00 p.m. Meet at the Jug Handle State Natural Reserve parking lot on the west side of Highway 1, about 3 miles south of Fort Bragg.
Summer Programs at MacKerricher State Park
California State Parks announces free, guided interpretive programs at MacKerricher State Park. These programs will be presented every week through September 6, 2009. All programs are led by park staff or volunteers.
Memorial Day on the Coast – A 21-Gun Salute
—Posted Monday, May 25th, 2009 at 3:32 pm—
A 21-gun salute, readings, a prayer and the playing of taps were part of a Memorial Day gathering at Rose Memorial Park in Fort Bragg. About 50 people attended the event. The cemetery was ablaze with small American flags on veteran’s graves.