What is a “Nonessential Experimental” California Condor?

10,000 Birds

Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) recently proposed reintroducing California Condors in the Pacific Northwest. Of course, the California Condor is listed as “endangered” under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) and it has been famously subject to some of the most ambitious conservation efforts (including litigation ) ever undertaken for a bird. But this potential population of California Condors will be a “nonessential experimental” group. The U.S.

Cute California sea lion pups

4 The Love Of Animals

SeaWorld San Antonio is thrilled to announce the arrival of seven California sea lion pups born in June. Park guests … Continue reading → The post Cute California sea lion pups appeared first on 4 The Love of Animals. They are adorable, and full of energy! These pups are full of energy and charm guests with their playful mannerisms. cute animals wildlife

Bird Litigation: “Standing” and the California Gnatcatcher

10,000 Birds

The coastal subspecies of California Gnatcatcher ( Polioptila californica californica ) can be found in sage scrub that was once abundant from Ventura County to northern Baja California. range largely consists of valuable real estate along the Southern California coast and urban development around San Diego and Los Angeles has eliminated much of its habitat. The post Bird Litigation: “Standing” and the California Gnatcatcher appeared first on 10,000 Birds.

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California Exotic Animal Laws Criticized by Some

Critter News

Ohio's governor just signed an executive order modeled on California's exotic animal laws, actually spurring criticism of the effectiveness of those laws. exotic animals ohio california legislationHere's an interesting article.

Mad Cow Disease Appears in California

Critter News

Potentially bad news for California Agriculture. The reemergence of mad cow disease, discovered in a California dairy cow, could have major implications for the state’s meat industry, even though officials have said that the human food supply is unaffected. In California, private and public ranching takes up about 38 million acres, according to the California Cattlemen’s Assn. There are about 620,000 beef cows on 11,800 California ranches.

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New Laws to Start in California

Critter News

New legislation in California increases the misdemeanor penalty for animal neglect and makes it a crime to sell a live animal on any street, highway, public right-of-way, parking lot, or carnival. California SB 917 Two new laws in Oregon and California prohibit the possession, sale, trade or distribution of shark fins. The California law specifies that a person must hold a license in order to possess shark fins for scientific purposes. California AB 376.

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"Happy Cows" Campaign in California Under Fire

Critter News

California dairy farmers have an ad campaign that cows are just darn happy on their factory farms. california advertising cows PETA farm animal welfare dairyPETA is not convinced. This article about the situation appears in the Merced Sun-Star which is from my home county of Merced!

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Foie Gras to Be Banned in California

Critter News

In eight months, the sale of foie gras will be banned in California. It was also a perhaps belated realization by these chefs and their fans that a law signed eight years ago is truly taking effect and is about to change the way they do business drastically, putting California on the front lines of the battle about force-feeding ducks and geese to produce the silky liver delicacy. california legislation restaurants foie gras foodApparently, this will happen in 8 months.

Animal Welfare in the State of California

Critter News

California really is at the forefront of animal welfare and this is an excellent article detailing what's going on in the State and the challenges animal welfare faces. california legislation humane society farm animal welfare animal welfareIt also does a great job at profiling Jennifer Fearing who led the victory of Proposition 2. She sounds amazing.

Birding California: A Regional Primer

10,000 Birds

However, I am here to make the case for birding California. Northeastern California. This lovely corner of California is vast, beautiful, sparsely populated, and very wild. Northwestern California. American Dipper can be found in much of California, but either side of the Sierras provide many opportunities to track down this charismatic bird. Northern California pelagics (Monterey Bay north to Humboldt County).

A couple of California firsts.

10,000 Birds

The reserve at San Joaquin had already been very generous to me, so I was delighted to add to my California list in such style. New to California, indeed new to my North America list, was a Red-necked Phalarope , Phalaropus lobatus. The post A couple of California firsts. My sightings of Greater Roadrunners have often proved to be eccentric and unpredictable.

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Contemplating California Condors

10,000 Birds

The newest bird on the brink to capture her fertile imagination is the California Condor, on which she graciously shares her research and ruminations: Sometimes as a writer you recognize there’s been something overlooked in your midst—something quietly abiding. For me, a bird called the California Condor has taken over more of my thoughts lately, and I decided it was time to see one before giving a presentation about it to the Rachel Carson Commemoration at the National Aviary in May.

California Quail, The California State Bird: Now Forming Coveys

10,000 Birds

The California Quail ( Callipepla californica ) is the California state bird, inhabiting scrub, broken chaparral and woodland edges primarily in California, Oregon, Washington and Baja California. In California, coveys break up and pairs begin forming in February or March, followed by nest building and egg laying in May or June. California Quail will chose to run from danger rather than fly but they will flush if forced and take flight to the nearest cover.

Northern Flicker Intergrade in California

10,000 Birds

But we are seeing them in California. Birds California Intergrade Northern Flicker woodpeckers The Northern Flicker ( Colaptes auratus ) is the third largest woodpecker in North America if you count the Ivory-billed Woodpecker. It is smaller than the Pileated Woodpecker. This is a male red-shafted Northern Flicker I spotted at Lema Ranch a few years ago. You can see that the male of the species has a bright red mustache not present on the female.

Kutras Lake and the California Gull

10,000 Birds

The top photo shows a first winter California Gull ( Larus californicus ) on the right and a non-breeding adult on the left. Below is the same first winter California Gull with the smaller non-breeding adult Ring-billed Gull ( Larus delawarensis ) on the left. Not living on the coast is the most obvious reason that I don’t see many gulls or shorebirds but it helps having the Sacramento River, the largest river in California, running through the central valley.

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The California Thrasher, A California Endemic

10,000 Birds

The California Thrasher ( Toxostoma redivivum ) is endemic to coastal and foothill areas of California, extending into adjacent areas of northwest Baja California. Yup, another California native and a sweet songster to boot! The local list serve, Shasta Birders , posted a sighting of California Thrashers so I thought I’d see what I could find. Birds california California Thrasher West Coast

California’s Autumn Seas

10,000 Birds

For whatever reason, however, yesterday on my way to work my mind wasn’t with our upcoming spring, but with September’s in California. I saw a wagtail there once, which was exceptionally cool for California (I’m told). California Sea Lions porpoised through the clear water. Birding bats California Farallon Islands seabirds whales Autumn, or fall, as Americans persist in calling it, is not a season I am experiencing at the moment.

Back in Southern California

10,000 Birds

Though I have made several trips to southern California over the eight years I have been birding almost every trip has been in December or January. My novice birding skills and the heat of midsummer meant that I missed a bunch of likely birds and didn’t really appreciate the awesomeness that is birding southern California in breeding season. Southern California in summer is where it is at.

Bird Litigation: Hindsight and the California Condor

10,000 Birds

As many birders know, the last wild California Condors were captured by the U.S. FWS began releasing captive-bred condors from the program into the wild in the early 1990s, with considerable success: once down to 22 birds, there are now approximately 275 wild condors in California, Arizona, Utah, and Baja California, as well as 165 in captivity. Both parties — FWS and Audubon — wanted the same thing: preservation of the California Condor.

California Peregrines Victims of Their Own Success?

10,000 Birds

In a move that’s sure to stir controversy far beyond the borders of California, federal officials have announced that h enceforth, fledgling Peregrine Falcons won’t be relocated from nests built on bridges in the state. The move, which seems limited to just California, is meant to protect endangered shorebirds which have become favorite meals of the raptors. News California Conservation endangered species Peregrine Falcon

Big Ag Upset Over California Antibiotics Ban

Critter News

I actually read one headline asking whether this was the beginning of the end of commercial farming in California. SB416, authored by state Majority Leader, Dean Florez (Democrat, Shafter), chairman of the California Senate Committee on Food and Agriculture, which approved the bill three votes to one on 21 April, would have the prohibition in place by 2015. Tags: california farm animal welfare us agribusiness

California Audubon Names Burrowing Owl Bird of the Year

10,000 Birds

After all, California Audubon’s site states that “This is a conservation award. These Burrowing Owl photos were taken at a rare breeding site in Vacaville California. One way we can do that is by voting for the Burrowing Owl as the California Audubon Bird of the Year in 2013. Conservation burrowing owls California Audubon Bird of the Year owls How does that sound for a headline? This is totally doable!

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California Common Ringed Plover

10,000 Birds

The first recorded Common Ringed Plover in California is being seen by so many birders that it has broken into the mainstream media. The article says that this sighting, in Davis, California, is only the fourth record in the lower 48 states, which seems low to me. There is more about the bird on PEEPS. Asides

Going to California

Critter News

We'll be taking a week off in the wonderful town of Gustine CA , so we'll see about the blogging. We have a laptop, but internet connectivity may be spotty. The town will soon be chock full of Portuguese (Azoreans, to be exact). Lots of good old time religion, overeating, and cows. Muito Bem

Osprey Love in Northern California

10,000 Birds

Living in Northern California offers nature lovers many opportunities to view wildlife in there native habitat. Most of the Osprey breeding in North America are migratory, only Florida, the Caribbean and Baja California host non-migratory breeders 1. Living near the Sacramento River and its many lakes and tributaries makes it even more likely to see the incredible fish hawk or sea eagle we call the Osprey ( Pandion haliaetus ). Click on photos for full sized images.

Terrible News. US Supreme Court Strikes Down California "Downer Cow" Law

Critter News

At issue was whether federal regulations dealing with inspection of domesticated animals about to be killed, processed, and sold for human consumption preempted -- or nullified -- California Penal Code 599f. California's (law) endeavors to regulate the same thing, at the same time, in the same place -- except by imposing different requirements. us supreme court california cows livestock farm animal welfare factory farmClearly a win for the damn livestock industry.

Red-crowned Parrots at Irvine Regional Park, Orange County, California

10,000 Birds

Southern California is loaded with parrots. Red-crowned Parrot in Irvine Regional Park Despite the number of species involved only one, the Red-crowned Parrot , is considered countable by the California Bird Records Committee. After all, if a bird is established in suburban Orange County, for it to inhabit “all geographically contiguous suitable habitat” it would have to be everywhere in suburban southern California, which is a huge swath of territory.

Prop 2 Passes in California

Critter News

Proposition 2 has been passed in California. 4, 2008) – Voters in California approved an historic ballot measure to halt the inhumane confinement of animals on factory farms by an overwhelming margin. California voters have taken a stand for decency and compassion and said that the systemic mistreatment of animals on factory farms cannot continue," said Wayne Pacelle, president and CEO of The Humane Society of the United States, the primary back of the YES!

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Rufous Hummingbird Male in Northern California

10,000 Birds

According to Macauley Library’s migration map the overwhelming breeding activity for this species occurs north of the state of California. I guess we will find out as the eBird maps change in the future, but until then, here is another photo of one of the males hanging out here in Northern California. The Rufous Hummingbird ( Selasphorus rufus ) visits my home every year about this time. Of course the males come first to establish territory.

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Tricolored Blackbird in Trouble in California

10,000 Birds

More than 99% of the population of Tricolored Blackbirds ( Agelaius tricolor ) live within the state of California and form the largest colonies of any North American passerine bird 1. A summary of the 2013 California statewide reportstates: The 2014 Statewide Survey was held from April 18-20, 2014. The California population estimate derived from the Survey was 145,000 birds. Thus, the number of tricolors in California continues a rapid decline.

Allegedly Artsy Bird Photos from Southern California

10,000 Birds

Here are some allegedly “artsy” shots (and maybe some legitimately artsy shots) of some of the birds I have seen since arriving in southern California nearly a week ago. … Birds California photographyWhen I am out in the field birding I often can’t resist taking pictures of birds even when I know that the light is such that I am not going to get a very good image.

Preliminary CBC Birding in Northern California

10,000 Birds

We conduct four Christmas Bird Counts in our part of Northern California, the first of which is the Fall River Christmas Bird Count coming up in just about two weeks. Did I forget to mention seeing California Quail ( Callipepla californica ) … and Black-billed Magpie ( Pica pica ) on the way into the lake? In contemplation of this event, my Audubon chapter scheduled an outing to Fall River and McArthur (location of the previously posted Snow Bunting – see map ).

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California Budget Woes May Lead to More Shelter Deaths

Critter News

Tags: animal shelter management euthanization california strays

Soon to be an Armchair ABA Tick – Nutmeg Mannikin in California

10,000 Birds

As of 27 August 2013 the California Bird Records Committee has voted to add the introduced Nutmeg Mannikin to the state checklist. Or, as Seagull Steve puts it : The dreaded Nutmeg Mannikin has been added to California’s official state list by the California Bird Records Committee (aka Bird Police). This one was spotted back on 1 January 2011 at Upper Newport Bay in Orange County, California, the first place I ever encountered Nutmeg Mannikins. Finally!

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California Rice Farmers Helping Birds

10,000 Birds

million federal grant, farmers in California’s Glenn and Colusa Counties will be managing the water levels of their fields to provide ideal habitat for birds. Thanks to a $2.68 Sounds like a great initiative for the birds and for the farmers ! Asides

The Lesser Goldfinch: A Common California Species

10,000 Birds

The male (seen below) has a black cap and, in Washington, Oregon, California, and Baja California, nearly all males have green backs. This spunky little finch is the smallest member of the North American genus Carduelis. I caught this male pictured above harassing a female Ruby-crowned Kinglet as she was bathing in the water feature. Unlike the more common American Goldfinch, the Lesser Goldfinch’s ( Spinus psaltria ) plumage does not change color during breeding season.

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Poet Laureate of California Questions Animal Testing

Critter News

Here's her piece in the Huffington Post.

Twitching the Summer Tanager in Northern California

10,000 Birds

As I discovered chatting with my fellow birders at the Sycamore Grove Campground, this male Summer Tanager would be a record for Tehama County California. I was able to get a few shots of him eating one of the berries off the tree… Not having much time to bird lately and due to the fact that daytime temps have been in the triple digits for several weeks in Northern California recently, it was good to get out with fellow birders and enjoy the avifauna.

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Vermilion Flycatcher in Colusa County California

10,000 Birds

The Vermilion Flycatcher ( Pyrocephalus rubinus ) is usually found near the US – Mexican border but we were fortunate this year to find an adult male in northern California! Click on photos for full sized images.

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Tundra Swans In The California Central Valley

10,000 Birds

Birding Birds California swans Tundra SwansNow you know why the most numerous and widespread of the two swan species in North America used to be known as the Whistling Swan. The North American Tundra Swan ( Cygnus columbianus columbianus ) migrates in flocks of family groups… leaving their Arctic breeding grounds in late September and arriving in their wintering grounds in November and December 1 (click on photos for full sized images).

Black-backed Woodpeckers and Forest Fires in California and the West

10,000 Birds

To protect this woodpecker and the post-fire ecosystems it depends on throughout California, in September 2010 the Center for Biological Diversity and the John Muir Project petitioned to list the bird under the California Endangered Species Act, earning it “candidate” status in the state, which does offer some protections for the bird. A Conservation Strategy for the Black-backed Woodpecker (Picoides arcticus) in California. Point Reyes Station, California.

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California's Ag Industry Worried that State Committee will Focus on "Emotion"

Critter News

There is definitely a new tide in California, post Proposition 2. In a move that elevated the anxiety level among grower-shippers, Darrell Steinberg, the new president pro-tem of the California state Senate, overhauled the body’s agriculture committee. Several environmental groups were represented at the news conference, during which Steinberg said the changes would usher in a new era in California agriculture policy. “My

Northern California Christmas Bird Counts Start with a Bang!

10,000 Birds

Northern California’s Christmas Bird Counts started out with a bang this year. 1 California Gull (6th time on the count). Saturday, December 14th, the first day of the 114th Christmas Bird Count, 27 enthusiastic counters had unseasonably warm and sunny weather to count 21,695 birds for the Fall River Mills Christmas Bird Count. The final tally for this thirty year old count circle was 123 species.

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