BLM California News.Bytes Issue 826

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Ca Point arena stornetta. Coast and light house in distance during sunset

Point Arena Stornetta Unit of the California Coastal National Monument

ISSUE 826 - September 27, 2018

- From the Field
- Headlines and Highlights
- BLM and DOI Highlights
- Wildlife Question of the Week
- Upcoming Events


6 blm employees kneel in front of ohv

SxS Training Part of Wildfire Recovery

The Bureau of Land Management is reopening several public land recreation areas in Lake, Mendocino and Colusa counties that have been closed since late July because of dangers from the Mendocino Complex fires and suppression efforts. (BLM California Facebook)

Related: (BLM California Website)

Teacher looks over volunteers in field

Eagle Lake Field Office Hosts “Wild Horse Walkabout”

Eager learners spent nearly three days in the rugged expanse of our Twin Peaks Wild Horse Herd Management area over the weekend of Sept. 14, in a hands-on learning exercise about the art, science and complexity of rangeland management. They even used their taste buds to enhance their understanding. (BLM California Facebook)

BLM-MojaveTrailsMap-Brochures-photo by inland us

Bureau of Land Management Hosts Orientation On Mojave Trails National Monument

The Bureau of Land Management returned to Twentynine Palms on Tuesday, Sept. 18, for its second public lands orientation session. The educational presentation was co-sponsored by the City of Twentynine Palms and the Visit 29 Tourism Business Improvement District (TBID) as part of the city’s partnership with the BLM as an official gateway to Mojave Trails National Monument. (Inland Empire News Story)

Southern sea otter rests in a patch of feather boa kelp. photo by usfws

California Sea Otter Numbers Take a Slight Dip From Last Year, but Average Count Exceeds 3,090 for Third Consecutive Year

Southern sea otter numbers have declined off the coast of California since peaking in 2016, but the average population count remains above 3,090 for the third consecutive year. According to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s Southern Sea Otter Recovery Plan, the population average count would have to exceed 3,090 for three consecutive years for southern sea otters to be considered for delisting under the Endangered Species Act.(USFWS news release)


BLM yellow fire engine during sunset

BLM to Modify Fire Restrictions in the California Desert District

As of October 3, the Bureau of Land Management will reduce current Stage II Fire Restrictions to Stage I and continue the Stage III Fire Restrictions for BLM-managed public lands within Los Angeles, Orange, San Bernardino, Riverside, Imperial, Inyo, Kern, Mono, and San Diego counties. These restrictions will remain in effect until further notice.(BLM news release)

Carr-Fire smoke and orange sky photo by Eric Coulter

BLM Begins Emergency Stabilization Projects on Public Lands Burned in Carr Fire

The Bureau of Land Management is beginning work on emergency stabilization projects aimed at reducing post fire damage and threats to public safety on public lands burned in the Carr Fire.(BLM news release)


Kingston Mountains Telecom Site

BLM Authorizes Project to Improve Communication Capability for Rural Areas in San Bernardino County

The Bureau of Land Management Needles Field Office has authorized the construction of a communication site to improve communication capability along rural areas in San Bernardino County. The release of the Decision Record and Finding of No Significant Impact for a communication site at Nipton authorizes InterConnect to move forward with its project located on public lands.(BLM news release)


People sit in cab of truck smiling about tires

BLM to Co-Sponsor Nevada County Tire Amnesty Week

The Bureau of Land Management’s California State Office and Mother Lode Field Office, along with Tahoe National Forest, Waste Management and Nevada County are hosting a tire amnesty event daily from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m., Oct. 1-5, to help keep the environment clean. Participants must be Nevada County residents.(BLM news release)



BIA Law Enforcement hat

Trump Admin’s Joint Opioid Reduction Task Force Leads To 75 Arrests In North Carolina Indian Country

A major law enforcement operation targeting drug trafficking in and around Indian Country in North Carolina has resulted in the arrest of more than 75 individuals on federal, state and tribal charges, announced U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke and Andrew Murray, U.S. Attorney for the Western District of North Carolina.(DOI news release)


Offshore oil and gas platform in the gulf of Mexico. Photo by Bureau of Ocean Energy Management

Interior Proposes Region-Wide Oil and Gas Lease Sale for Gulf of Mexico

In support of President Donald J. Trump’s America-First Offshore Energy Strategy, Deputy Secretary of the Interior David Bernhardt and Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) Acting Director Walter Cruickshank today announced that BOEM proposes to offer 78 million acres for a region-wide lease sale scheduled for March 2019. The sale would include all available unleased areas in federal waters of the Gulf of Mexico. (DOI news release)

oil and gas field california blm photo by john ciccarelli

Interior Department Finalizes New Waste Prevention Rule

The two-day sale in New Mexico brought in more revenue than all Bureau of Land Management oil and gas sales in 2017 combined, and surpassed BLM’s previous best sales year. (DOI news release)


native american students_bureau of Indian Education photo

Assistant Secretary Sweeney Announces $74.2 Million in Funding for Design-Build Contracts for Two New School Buildings

 In 2016, Indian Affairs selected both schools as two of 10 schools for replacement through the No Child Left Behind (NCLB) replacement school construction process.(DOI news release)

pronghorn_nv_blm photo by chip carroon

Just Ahead of National Hunting and Fishing Day, Secretary Zinke Announces Next Steps to Protect Big Game Migration Corridors

After requesting states' input on the conservation of big game migration corridors, winter range, and research needs in eleven western states, U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke announced the Department will begin the next steps in the conservation of these important routes and areas. The announcement comes just ahead of National Hunting and Fishing Day, which is celebrated on September 22 this year.(DOI news release)


fall colors in Acadia national park_Photo by Adam pouliot

Fall in Love With 20 Amazing Public Lands in Autumn

Public lands are amazing all year, but there’s something really magnificent about the arrival of fall colors. As whole forests transition into bright reds, oranges and yellows, leaf peepers head to their favorite spots to enjoy cooler temperatures and this gorgeous natural spectacle. Check out a few of our favorite places to welcome autumn. (DOI blog)

A visitor takes in the beauty and wonder of the towering sequoia trees on the Congress Trail. Photo by Richard Thompson (

11 Things You Didn’t Know about Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks

Sequoia National Park was established on September 25, 1890, making it our country’s second national park. Fifty years later, on March 4, 1940, Congress established Kings Canyon National Park, which is adjacent to the north boundary of Sequoia. Since World War II, these neighboring parks have been administered jointly.Photo by Richard Thompson. (DOI blog)

boardwalk at john heinz National Wildlife Refuge. Photo Ron Holmes, USFWS

Urban Wildlife Refuges Bring the Outdoors to Your Front Door

Did you know: More than 80 percent of Americans live in and around cities? While conservation efforts historically focus on rural areas, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s urban national wildlife refuges are working to connect urban and suburban residents to nature in their communities and create the next generation of outdoor stewards.(DOI blog)

El Camino Real de Tierra Adentro National Historic Trail cosplay

Discover Hispanic Heritage at These Historic Sites

Hispanic Heritage Month started on September 15. Interior and its bureaus preserve and interpret historic sites across the country. For Americans whose ancestors came from Spain, Mexico, the Caribbean and Central and South America, these places connect them to our nation’s shared history. From early explorers to modern day leaders, Hispanic Americans have influenced America’s culture and played an important role in society. (DOI photo gallery)



mystery animal

What is the smallest marine mammal? 

Hint: (Largest member of the weasel family)

Keep reading for answer below.


Vast landscape for California Solar Project

September 26 & 27: BLM Will Host Two Public Meetings for Desert Quartzite Solar Project

The Bureau of Land Management, Palm Springs-South Coast Field Office, will host two public meetings on Sept. 26 and 27, for the proposed Desert Quartzite Solar Photovoltaic Project, in eastern Riverside County. (BLM news release)

Trinidad Lighthouse National Public Lands Day

September 29: National Public Lands Day Event in King Range National Conservation Area

Join us Saturday, Sept. 22, at the historic lighthouse in Trinidad. Volunteers will plant native plants on the light station grounds. Anyone interested should meet at 10 a.m. in the parking area at the base of Trinidad Head and hike a half-mile uphill to the lighthouse. The workday ends at 1 p.m. (BLM news release)

Trash on public lands in Rattlesnake Gulch photo by sherri Lisius, BLM

September 29: Rattlesnake Gulch Clean up event

The Bureau of Land Management Bishop Field Office, Friends of the Inyo and the Bodie Hills Conservation Partnership will be hosting a volunteer stewardship event on National Public Lands Day, Saturday, September 29, starting at 8:30 a.m. Volunteers will be removing nearly an acre of trash from public lands in Rattlesnake Gulch, near the historic Conway Ranch in the southern part of the Bodie Hills. (BLM news release)

Clear Creek Green way stream bed

September 29: Volunteers Welcome for National Public Lands Day Event Near Redding

Volunteers are welcome to help clean up public lands along the Clear Creek Greenway south of Redding, when the BLM and its partners celebrate National Public Lands Day, Saturday, Sept. 29. (BLM news release)

Tortoise in desert with flowers

September 29: Desert Tortoise Research Natural Area National Public Lands Day Event

Join us for a day in the desert cleaning up trash and repairing fencing. In coordination with BLM’s National Public Lands Day, we will be working on clean-up and maintenance activities on the Desert Tortoise Research Natural Area.(Facebook California event)

Related: (Tortoise-tracks events)

Volunteers help out at Carrizo Plain

September 29 & October 6: BLM Bakersfield Hammering out Historic Home Restoration and Sprucing up Carrizo Plain for National Public Lands Day

Join the Bureau of Land Management Bakersfield Field Office for two National Public Lands Day events sprucing up the Goodwin Education Center at the Carrizo Plain National Monument and restoring the historic Walker Cabin in the Keysville Special Recreation Management Area near Lake Isabella. (BLM news release)

Valley near Keystone Exploratory Project

October 12: Public Comment Period Ending for Proposed Keystone Exploratory Project

 The Bureau of Land Management Ridgecrest Field Office has made available for 30-day public comment an Environmental Assessment for the Keystone Exploratory Drilling Project located on existing unpatented lode mining claims on public lands. The public comment period for the EA will end on Oct. 9. (BLM news release)


October 12: Public Comment Period Ending for Proposed Route Designation Project in San Bernardino County

The Bureau of Land Management’s Barstow Field Office has made available for 30-day public comment an Environmental Assessment on a route designation proposal affecting 130 miles of routes located on BLM public lands currently maintained by the county of San Bernardino’s Public Works Department. Segments of these routes that are under county management are limited to street legal vehicles, as defined by the California Department of Motor Vehicles. (BLM news release)


mother and son tying sticks together

October 13: Participants Will Learn about the past in Archaeology Day event

The Bureau of Land Management will offer a hands-on look into the lives of northeast California’s early inhabitants during Archaeology Day, a free, family-friendly event, Saturday, Oct. 13, at the Hobo Camp Day Use Area along the Susan River just west of Susanville.  Events run from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. (BLM news release)

Wild horses from public lands. Photo by BLM.

Now - 2019: Bring Home a Wild Horse or Burro

The BLM Wild Horse and Burro Program is excited to announce nearly 70 events this year as part of BLM's efforts to find good homes for our nation's wild horses and burros. Known for their intelligence, endurance and loyalty, wild horses and burros, with the right training, are outstanding for trail riding, packing, working and have successfully competed for awards in numerous fields from endurance riding to dressage. With more than 81,000 wild horses and burros on BLM-managed public lands, these wild icons of our American history need your help more than ever. Without any natural predators that can control population growth, wild horse and burro herds grow rapidly on the range and can quickly overcome the land's ability to support them. The BLM works to maintain healthy wild herds by gathering excess animals and placing them into good homes. (BLM website)


Answer: Sea Otter

The sea otter is the largest member of the weasel family and the smallest marine mammal.  Ninety percent of the world’s sea otters live in coastal Alaska.

Sea otters were hunted nearly to extinction in the late 1700s and 1800s through commercial harvest for their luxurious furs.  Once commercial harvest ceased, sea otter numbers rebounded and they re-colonized much of their former range. (USFWS blog)