BLM California News.Bytes Issue 857

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Spangler Mountains. Photo by Sterling White, BLM.

Spangler Mountains, southeast of Ridgecrest

ISSUE 857 - June 13, 2019

  • Great Outdoors Month
  • Wildland Fire
  • Headlines and Highlights
  • BLM and DOI Highlights 
  • Wildlife Question of the Week
  • Upcoming Events


Upcoming travel plans? Please remember to check road conditions and closures. Travelers can also download the QuickMap app,, or call 1-800-427-7623 for constantly updated highway information. (California Department of Transportation

Summer along the North Fork of the American River in California. Photo by Bob Wick, BLM.

How Will You Celebrate Great Outdoors Month?

There’s no better way to spend Great Outdoors Month than getting out to America’s public lands and waters. You can stroll through fields of wildflowers, make a new feathered friend, take part in a thrilling event or embrace an American tradition. Connecting to nature and getting some exercise is good for the mind, body and soul. Your chances for adventure are as numerous as the stars in the sky. (DOI blog)

Be sure to follow #MyPublicLandsSummer on social media!
This #GreatOutdoorsMonth and over the summer, follow along as we highlight opportunities for #BLMAdventures
on your public lands across the nation.

Kids Ocean Day 2019. Photo by J Patrick Cudahy and Mark Harris.

Over 1000 Kids from All Over Humboldt County Came Out for Ocean Day and Help Keep Their Local Beach Healthy

It was a beautiful day today and with summer right around the corner, over a thousand kids got to spend some time at the beach. But they were to help make it a healthier ecosystem, by taking a stand in the sand. “Marine debris is a big issue and it does threaten ocean species,” said Friends of the Dunes Board Member Carol Vander Meer. There are many threats facing our ocean. From plastic, to endangering wildlife, and even warming waters. “There are concerns worldwide about warming oceans, and what impact that can have on ecosystems, and food chains,” said Vander Meer. But in order to combat this growing problem, it all starts with education. “It’s really important to get kids out on the beach, make them feel like they play an important role in the restoration,” said Bureau of Land Management Specialist Leisyka Parrott. Friends of the Dunes, the Bureau of Land Management, he California Conservation Corps, and other agencies across the state are teaching kids the importance of our ocean. (Redwood News)

Kern River rafters. Photo by ABC 23.


With the warm weather arriving you may take to the Kern River to cool off, but the river can be unpredictable and dangerous. Thank you to community partners, the USFS, BLM, Kern County Sheriff’s Office, 23ABC, Kern Valley Search and Rescue, Kern County Fire Department and the Kern River Conservancy for helping with this important river safety message. (BLM California Facebook)

CA river flowing. Photo by CDWR.

High and Fast Water Are All the More Reasons to #WearaLifeJacket

Under California law, every child under 13 years of age on a moving recreational vessel of any length must wear a Coast Guard-approved life jacket in serviceable condition and of a type and size appropriate for the conditions and the activity. (California Division of Boating and Waterways website)

Related: Current river conditions (DBW website)

Related: River safety tips (DBW website)

Related: Quick tips for responsible motorized boating (Tread Lightly)


CA campfire permit promo graphic

Campfire Permit

Campfire permits are required for open fires, such as campfire, barbecues and portable stoves on federally managed lands and private lands that are the property of another person. On private lands, written permission from the landowner is also required for campfire use. Get your California Campfire Permit quickly and easily online! (


Visit the BLM California fire restrictions website for more information about current fire restrictions on BLM-managed public lands.

June 2019 Sand Fire. Photo by BLM.

California Wildfire 2019: Record Temperatures Hit West Coast, Yolo Valley Sand Fire Spreads to 2,500 Acres

The National Weather Service has issued an excessive heat warning for several California counties, after wildfires spread across the state forcing many to evacuate their homes. Coachella Valley, San Diego County Deserts and San Gorgonio Pass near Banning will see temperatures soar above the June average, with Fresno experiencing record-breaking temperatures. NWS Hanford tweeted that the city could set a new record for high minimum temperature today, with the previous watermark for June 12 set at 73 F in 1985. Other cities in California such as Campo, Thermal, Borrego and Anaheim also broke records. (Newsweek)

Follow wildland fire incident information and updates via InciWeb and CAL FIRE.

Redding Trail Alliance working to repair trails from Carr Fire. Photo by KRCR News.

Redding Trail Alliance Repairs Carr Fire and Storm Damaged Trails

Every year tourists flock to Redding, to enjoy it's many outdoor hiking and biking trails, but heavy use on the trails also leads to wear and tear that need repairs. That is where the Redding Trail Alliance comes in to help. For the last three years, the non-profit organization has been working closely with the Bureau of Land Management to maintain the natural beauty on the trails. Together, with funding from private donations and the McConnell Foundation, as well as, hands-on assistance from BLM and Americorps, they have been able to complete projects like "The Enticer" and "Snail Trail" bike trails in the Swasey Recreation Area. They have also been hard at work to fix the damage caused by the Carr Fire, last July, replacing damaged culverts and 4 burned bridges along the trails. (KRCR News)

Cronan Ranch Rx burn. Photo by Monte Kawahara, BLM.

BLM Mother Lode Field Office Initiates Seasonal Fire Restrictions

The Bureau of Land Management Mother Lode Field Office is initiating fire restrictions on BLM-managed public lands in Amador, Calaveras, El Dorado, Mariposa, Merced, Nevada, Placer, Sacramento, San Joaquin, Stanislaus, Sutter, Tuolumne and Yuba counties, effective June 14, due to wildland fire danger. (BLM news release)

Central Coast. Photo by Ryan O'Dell, BLM.

BLM Central Coast Field Office Initiates Seasonal Fire Restrictions

The Bureau of Land Management Central Coast Field Office is initiated fire restrictions, effective June 10, for BLM-managed public lands in Fresno, Monterey, San Benito and Santa Cruz counties, due to wildland fire danger. The National Interagency Fire Center predicts the likelihood for large wildland fires will be above normal this summer. An unusually wet winter has produced an abundant grass crop, which has already cured or dried out. These heavy fuel loads have a high potential for creating extreme wildland fire behavior. (BLM news release)

2019 Rx burn on public lands.  Photo by Steve Watkins, BLM.

BLM Bakersfield Field Office Issues Fire Restrictions

The Bureau of Land Management Bakersfield Field Office issued fire restrictions for BLM-managed public lands effective May 20, due to potential wildland fire danger. The BLM-managed public lands affected by these fire restrictions are in eastern Fresno, western Kern, Kings, Madera, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, Tulare and Ventura counties. Fire restrictions will also affect BLM-managed recreational areas including the Carrizo Plain National Monument, Chimney Peak, Kennedy Meadows, Keysville, Lake Isabella, San Joaquin River Gorge and Three Rivers. (BLM news release)

BLM fire engine and firefighters. Photo by Paul Gibbs, BLM.

BLM Initiates Seasonal Fire and Target Shooting Restrictions in the California Desert District

The Bureau of Land Management initiated stage II and III fire restrictions as of April 10 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. Stage II and III fire restrictions address the use of campfires, controlled flame devices and smoking on public lands. (BLM news release)

Wildfire Weather Aware campaign graphic.

Be #WildfireWeatherAWARE

It’s that time of year again and we need to get ready for wildfire. This includes things like clearing leaves off the roof and out of the gutters, clearing vegetation and combustible materials around your home and preparing or reviewing your evacuation plan. This spring and summer, learn more by following the #WildfireWeatherAWARE campaign with the Bureau of Land Management, CAL FIRE, U.S. National Weather Service, Forest Service and California Fire Safe Council. (BLM California Facebook)

Related: Ready for Wildfire (



Peirson's milk-vetch in flower. Photo by USFWS.

Draft Recovery Plan for Peirson’s Milk-Vetch Released for Public Review and Comment

A draft Recovery Plan for Peirson’s milk-vetch has been released for public review and comment. Listed as a threatened species under the ESA in 1998, the plant is found only in portions of the Algodones Dunes in Imperial County, California, and the Gran Desierto in Mexico. The draft plan identifies actions that will guide recovery of the plant to the point at which protection under the ESA is no longer needed... In the United States, the plant occurs within a narrow band running 40 miles northwest to southeast along the western portion of the Algodones Dunes. Nearly all of the lands in the dunes are managed by the Bureau of Land Management as the Imperial Sand Dunes Recreation Area. (USFWS news release)

Robin Kobaly accepts the Minerva Hoyt Conservation Award at Covington Park. Photo by Hi Desert Star.

Environmental Activist is Awarded for a Lifetime of Achievements

Longtime Morongo Valley environmental activist Robin Kobaly was 6 years old when she discovered her fascination for plants. Her mom, who was interested in researching plants used by Native Americans, began taking her around the Morongo Basin identifying plants and learning all about them... Kobaly was honored by the Joshua Tree National Park Association recently with the 2018 Minerva Hoyt conservation award for her contributions in education, research and preservation of the California desert... Kobaly worked for 20 years with the Bureau of Land Management as a botanist, wildlife biologist and natural history interpreter. She served as acting chief of public affairs for the BLM, co-founded The Wildlands Conservancy and instituted the Sand-to-Snow Wilderness Project. (Hi-Desert Star)

Wild horses at the Twin Peaks Herd Management Area. Photo by BLM.

BLM Accepting Public Comments on Wild Horse and Burro Management

The Bureau of Land Management released for public review and comment a preliminary environmental assessment analyzing a range of alternatives for managing wild horses and burros on public lands along the California-Nevada border northeast of Susanville. The Twin Peaks HMA covers nearly 800,000 acres in Lassen County, California, and Washoe County, Nevada. Based on recent census flights and population growth estimates, the BLM believes there at about 3,500 wild horses and 600 wild burros in the HMA. The appropriate management level for wild horses is a minimum of 448 and a maximum of 758 animals. The AML for burros ranges from 72 to 116 animals. (BLM news release)

King Range Artist in Residence. Photo by BLM.

BLM Hosting Artists in Residence at King Range National Conservation Area

The dramatically beautiful King Range National Conservation Area has become a workshop for artists this spring, when a painter and sculptor set to work as artists in residence, ultimately exhibiting their creations inspired by California’s Lost Coast. Painter Susan R. Mendelsohn of the San Francisco Bay Area. The Bureau of Land Management hosted painter Susan R. Mendelsohn of the San Francisco Bay Area from April 29 to May 12, and sculptor Benjamin Funke of Humboldt County from May 18 to June 15.

Art exhibitions will be at the SCARF Gallery at the Inn of the Lost Coast, 205 Wave Dr., Shelter Cove.(BLM California Facebook)


Canoeing on public waters. Photo by FWS.

$17+ Million in Grants Will Help States, Local Communities Keep Waters Clean, Economies Thriving

Water-loving outdoor recreationists and local communities in 27 states will have additional resources to help boaters keep America’s waters clean, thanks to more than $17 million in Clean Vessel Act program grants from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Millions of Americans enjoy recreational boating as part of a multi-billion-dollar industry that drives many local economies. However, boaters can have an impact on the health of our waterways, particularly water quality. The Clean Vessel Act grants provide much-needed funding to communities to build and maintain facilities that help boaters keep our rivers and streams clean. Pump-out systems built or purchased with these funds ensure recreational boaters have a safe, convenient and effective method to dispose of on-board sewage. The funds also support associated boater education programs. (DOI news release)

Public lands. Photo by DOI.

Secretary Bernhardt Proposes Increasing Public Access to Hunting and Fishing on 1.4 Million Acres Nationwide

Furthering the Trump Administration’s efforts to increase access to public lands, U.S. Secretary of the Interior David Bernhardt today announced from Ottawa National Wildlife Refuge a proposal for new or expanded hunting and fishing opportunities at 74 national wildlife refuges and 15 national fish hatcheries managed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service across more than 1.4 million acres. (DOI news release)

Orange County coastline. Photo by Doug Herrema, BLM.

Proclamation on National Ocean Month, 2019

The ocean supports millions of American jobs across numerous industries, including commercial fishing, recreation and tourism, international trade, shipping, ports, energy, and other maritime commerce. During National Ocean Month, we recognize the importance of the ocean to the economy, national security, and environment of the United States, and we renew our commitment to safeguarding its vital resources. (White House website)

Related: Interior is one of our Nation’s principal stewards for our oceans, Great Lakes and coastal resources, Interior recognizes the vital connection between the health of our Nation’s natural resources and human health and economy. (DOI website)

Related: Newswave Spring Issue via DOI

Related: Newswave Summer Photo Issue via DOI

King Range National Conservation Area. Photo by Bob Wick, BLM.

BLM Announces Upcoming Fee-Free Days on Public Lands in 2019

The summer travel season gets under way in June with Great Outdoors Month. To encourage visitation to America’s public lands, the Bureau of Land Management will waive recreation-related fees for visitors to agency-managed public lands on three additional dates through the remainder of 2019: September 28 (National Public Lands Day) and November 11 (Veterans Day). BLM-managed public lands offer a wide array of recreational opportunities, including hiking, hunting, fishing, camping, mountain biking, horseback riding, boating, whitewater rafting, off-highway vehicle driving, rock climbing, and more. Americans make approximately 67 million visits annually to BLM-managed lands, supporting approximately 48,000 jobs nationwide and contributing almost $7 billion to the U.S. economy. (BLM news release)

Midway ceremony. Photo by DOI.

This Week at Interior, June 7, 2019

This Week: Interior salutes Great Outdoors Month and National Fishing and Boating Week; Secretary Bernhardt announces the proposed historic expansion of hunting and fishing on 1.4 million acres of Interior land; a new strategy released for better management of critical minerals; USGS predicts how Atlantic hurricanes might impact sandy shorelines; BOEM and Louisiana make an agreement to restore millions of cubic meters of Gulf of Mexico sand; the Nation marks two solemn anniversaries from World War II; and our social media Picture of the Week! (DOI video)


Ladybug swarm on NWS radar. Photo by NWS.

Fill in the Blank

A huge blob that appeared on the National Weather Service's radar wasn't a rain cloud, but a massive swarm of __________ over Southern California.                                

Keep scrolling to find out!


Historic photo of burros in Bodie, California. Photo by BLM.

Now - December 2019: Fueling the Boom, Chinese Woodcutters in the Great Basin 1870-1920 

The Nevada State Museum in Carson City is hosting a new exhibit featuring historical/ archaeological artifacts and photographs about Chinese woodcutting camps from Bodie Hills. The exhibit will highlight the significance of the woodcutting community near Chinese Camp (Aurora), shedding light on the little-known history of the Chinese woodcutters who lived there and felled pinyon pines to supply charcoal and firewood to the mining camps of Bodie and Aurora from 1875 to 1915. (Nevada State Museum website)

Bizz Johnson Trail. Photo by Bob Wick, BLM.

Summer: Bus Shuttle Service to Begin on Bizz Johnson National Recreation Trail

Summer bus shuttle service on the Bizz Johnson National Recreation Trail begins Saturday, June 1, and will continue every Saturday through the summer season. The service is a partnership of the Bureau of Land Management and Lassen Rural Bus. On Saturdays, the bus picks up passengers at 8:30 a.m. at the Historic Susanville Railroad Depot, 601 Richmond Rd., and makes stops at Devil’s Corral, Fredonyer Summit and Westwood. This allows hikers and mountain bike riders to use the trail for return trips to Susanville. Depending on the stop, the return trips are 7, 18 and 30 miles. The BLM shuttles bicycles in a specially-designed trailer. Participants should arrive early to allow time for bike loading. There are separate fees for the bike shuttle and bus service. (BLM news release)

Tire drop-off point in Nevada County. Photo by Peter Graves, BLM.

June 17-21: BLM and Partners to Sponsor Nevada County’s Tire Amnesty Week

Nevada County residents are invited to participate in the annual tire amnesty event, June 17-21, 8 a.m. to 2 p.m., daily. The Bureau of Land Management, Tahoe National Forest, Waste Management and Nevada County sponsor the event. Residents of Nevada County, California, who have bald tires, flat donut replacements or worn out snow studs can bring them to this event for disposal. (BLM news release)

Ridgecrest wild horses. Photo by JJ Nolan, BLM.

June 21, 22 and 23: Ramona Wild Horse and Burro Adoption 

BLM California will offer 10 wild horses and 10 burros for adoption at the Copper Meadows Horse Park in Ramona, California. Preview and applications accepted will take place on June 21 from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. On 
June 22, a competitive bid will begin at 8 a.m. and continue on a first-come, first-served basis until 4 p.m. June 23 events will continue on a first-come, first-served basis from 8 a.m. to noon. (BLM California Facebook)

Rasor Off-Highway Vehicle Area. Photo by BLM.

June 28 and 29: BLM Desert District Advisory Council to meet in Barstow

The Bureau of Land Management will hold a field tour and public meeting of the BLM California Desert District Advisory Council, starting with the field tour on Friday, June 28, 2019, from 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., and followed by a formal meeting session on Saturday, June 29, 2019, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., at the Ramada Inn, 1511 East Main Street, Barstow, California 92311. (BLM news release)

Wild horse on public lands. Photo by BLM.

July 9-11 and October 29-31: National Wild Horse and Burro Advisory Board to Meet in Boise and Washington, D.C.

The Bureau of Land Management’s National Wild Horse and Burro Advisory Board will meet July 9-11 in Boise, Idaho, and October 29-31 in Washington, D.C. The Board will discuss the pressing challenges of wild horse and burro management, including the number of unadopted and unsold animals in BLM facilities and the effects of overpopulation on public lands. Both meetings will be live-streamed from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. local time July 10-11 and October 30-31 at The BLM will host a site visit for the Advisory Board to a local wild horse herd management area on July 9. (BLM news release)

Headwaters Forest Reserve. Photo by Bob Wick, BLM.

July 21: Writing and Photography Workshops at Headwaters Forest Reserve

Outdoor enthusiasts have the opportunity use the beauty of the Headwaters Forest Reserve to refine their photography and writing skills, in two free workshops to be offered this spring and summer by the Bureau of Land Management and Friends of Headwaters. (BLM news release)

Public visitors at a wild horse herd management area. Photo by BLM.

August 2, 3 and 4: 2nd Annual Wild Horse Walkabout 

Save the date! The public is invited to the Twin Peaks Herd Management Area near Susanville, CA. Attendees will spend the two nights out on the range to learn about how the BLM monitors rangeland and herd health from a BLM wild horse and burro specialist. Don't miss this unique opportunity to learn more about how BLM manages wild horses and burros. (BLM California Facebook)

Trinidad Head Lighthouse. Photo by BLM.

First Saturday of Every Month: Living History at Trinidad Head Lighthouse

BLM Park Ranger Julie Clark plays Josephine Harrington for Trinidad School students at Trinidad Head Lighthouse. Josephine lived with her husband, Captain Fred Harrington the lighthouse keeper, at the Trinidad Head Lighthouse for 28 years. Julie has been performing this living history piece to bring the past to life since the BLM acquired the lighthouse in 2014. Now part of the California Coastal National Monument, the Trinidad Head Lighthouse is open to the public the first Saturday of every month (year-round). Visitors can climb to the top of the lighthouse from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. thanks to docents from the Trinidad Museum Society

Contact the Arcata Field Office for details, (707) 825-2300.

WHB adoption promo. Photo by BLM.

Ongoing: 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)

Related: Adoption Incentive Program (BLM website)


A huge blob that appeared on the National Weather Service's radar wasn't a rain cloud, but a massive swarm of ladybugs over Southern California. (High-Flying Ladybug Swarm in SoCal Shows up on National Weather Service Radar via KTLA 5 News)