BLM California News.Bytes Issue 966

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Newsbytes logo with the BLM 75th anniversary.
Saddle Peak Hills Wilderness: Southern California Desert landscape of desert land and mountains, photo by Jesse Pluim of BLM

Saddle Peak Hills Wilderness, Barstow Field Office

ISSUE 966- September 3, 2021

National Wilderness Month

A desert cactus in a desert landscape.

A Proclamation on National Wilderness Month, 2021

America’s public lands and waters, awe-inspiring landscapes, and cultural sites reflect a deep and abiding connection to our natural heritage. Our lands and waters are rich with diverse plant and animal life, and we are privileged to be able to enjoy irreplaceable national treasures that amaze us, inspire us, fill us with pride, support our lives and livelihoods, and belong to all of us in equal measure. (

Person with two dogs on the trail looking out at an iconic California landscape of hills and a snow capped mountain.

Find your California Wilderness

From rocks and islands off the California coastline to native grasslands and from an historical army post to rugged mountain ranges, from National Scenic or Historic Trails to wilderness and wilderness study areas, BLM California manages many remarkable parts of the National Conservation Lands. (BLM CA National Conservation Lands)

Your Public Lands

Purple flower at lake Clark

Find online resources for your favorite public lands

Public lands are some of the best outdoor classrooms in the world. But thanks to their websites, they can be some of the best online classrooms, too. From paleontology to geology, women’s history to Native American culture, bird guides to star maps, you can learn so much without ever leaving your home. (DOI Blog)

A dog in a desert land scape.

This #NationalDogDay, we would like to remind you that dogs are welcome on most Bureau of Land Management public lands

Your pup will love the opportunity to frolic in nature. If you do bring your dog, please check the trail website or call the local BLM office for specific leash policies. Also, please Leave No Trace: Stay on established paths and properly dispose of your trash and dog waste. (BLM Instagram)

A graphic with a crane and volunteers that read: "volunteer with us".

We're looking to add new volunteers to our awesome volunteer team!

We run various volunteer programs at the Cosumnes River Preserve and right now we're looking to add new volunteers to our Volunteer Naturalist program. What do Volunteer Naturalists do?
- Open and close Visitor Center on weekends.
- Work in the Visitor Center on weekends, answering questions, handing out maps/brochures to visitors and much more! (Cosumnes River Preserve Facebook)

Two horses in a field.

Come on out THIS Saturday for some good ol' Scotch broom pullin' times!

We'll meet at the TCLT office at 9:30 am and walk over to Saunders Pasture to remove invasive Scotch broom. This species can spread QUICK and out-compete native plants for light and water. Brooms also add nitrogen to the soil - a change that can be detrimental to native plants. Furthermore, they increase the threat of fire in a landscape. (Trinidad Coastal Land Trust Facebook)

Headlines & Highlights

A family recreates along the Merced River.

Public safety triggers the BLM to issue an emergency closure of public lands in Mariposa County

Today, the BLM Mother Lode Field Office issued an Emergency Closure Order for all BLM-managed public lands along the Merced River, between Briceburg and Bagby, in Mariposa County. The temporary closure, in response to the presence of toxic algal blooms in the Merced River, will remain in effect until Sept. 17. The BLM may modify the length of the closure if conditions change. (BLM News Release)

Expansive view of Trinity River's rushing water with a dense pine forest backdrop.

BLM reopens some Trinity County public lands after emergency closure

In time for the Labor Day weekend, the BLM has reopened some public lands and campgrounds in Trinity County, after a two-week emergency closure in place due to public safety concerns from the nearby Monument Fire. The Redding Field Office announced reopening of the 23-site Douglas City Campground along with roads and day use areas along Steiner Flat Road. (BLM CA News Release)   

Bikers on the Bizz Johnson Trail.

BLM reopens Bizz Johnson National Recreation Trail

Hikers, mountain bikers and runners can again use the Bizz Johnson National Recreation Trail near Susanville, as the Bureau of Land Management has rescinded a temporary emergency closure associated with the Dixie Fire. (BLM CA News Release)


BLM approves range improvement projects in eastern Inyo County

Today, the Bureau of Land Management, Ridgecrest Field Office, approves range improvements within the Piper Mountains and Fish Lake Valley in eastern Inyo County. The projects will increase hydration options for grazing cattle and reduce the impacts to existing watering sites, protect resources, and allow for a more even distribution of cattle throughout the Deep Springs Valley and South Oasis grazing allotments. (BLM CA News Release)

A dump truck drops gravel on the side of the road.

Road improvement projects completed at Imperial Sand Dunes Recreation Area

Greys Well Road shoulder repairs completed this week. The last flash flood in the dunes washed out a few areas on the shoulders and our hard working staff got it done today so we can be ready for next season! (BLM Imperial Sand Dunes Facebook)

A Behren's silverspot butterfly on a flower.

Special thanks to our partners, including BLM California

The Behren's silverspot butterfly, found in CA's Mendocino & Sonoma counties, is listed as endangered due to low population numbers & limited habitat. Good news is that we're partnering with many to boost their numbers through captive propagation. (USFWS Twitter)

Fire & Fuels Management

Fire fighters wrapping a building in an aluminum sheet.

BLM California protects historic structure from the French Fire

The historic Walker Cabin, built during the mid-19th century gold rush, was protected from wildfire impacts from the French Fire burning in Kern County. The cabin was wrapped by staff from the BLM Bakersfield Field Office with aluminized structure wrap to keep out heat from the fire. (BLM CA Facebook)

Firefighters in yellow.

Military personnel mobilized to provide wildfire support

The National Interagency Fire Center, or NIFC, in Boise, Idaho, requested a U.S. Department of Defense activation of approximately 200 active-duty U.S. Army Soldiers to assist with wildfire suppression efforts. (NIFC Facebook

See also, The @JBLM_PAO Soldiers arrived to the #DixieFire & are attending Day 1 of field training with the @BLMca Folsom Lake Veterans Handcrew. (NIFC Twitter)

Landscape view of the Turtle Mountains Wilderness, creosote bush-bur sage, palo verde-cactus shrub and rock formations.

BLM California fire restrictions

BLM California fire restrictions or temporary public land closures reduce the risk of wildfires and protect the public. Often times, these preventative measures focus on human-related activities, such as campfires, off-road driving, equipment use and recreational target shooting, since human-related activities are the number one cause of a wildfires. Many BLM California offices have issued seasonal fire restrictions. (BLM CA Web)

Upcoming Events

Solar Panels.

BLM invites public review of the Arica and Victory Pass Solar Projects

Submit written comments by Tuesday, September 7

The proposed Arica and Victory Pass solar projects would generate up to 465 megawatts of electricity with up to 400 megawatts of battery storage. Together, these renewable energy projects would result in an estimated combined infrastructure investment of $689 million, $5.9 million in annual operational economic benefit and power approximately 132,000 homes. (DOI News Release)

Solar Panels.

BLM welcomes public input on the Oberon Solar project

Virtual public meeting, Wednesday, Sept. 8, from 5 to 7 p.m.

The BLM invites the public to review the environmental analysis and land use plan amendment for a proposed 500-megwatt photovoltaic solar project on 2,700 acres of public lands near Desert Center in eastern Riverside County. The efficient deployment of renewable energy from our nation’s public lands is crucial in achieving the Biden Administration’s goal of a carbon pollution-free power sector by 2035. (BLM CA News Release)

Question of the Week

A yellow garden spider in a web.

Yellow garden spider's zigzag pattern

The web of the garden spider contains a highly visible zigzagging X-shaped pattern called a stabilimentum. The exact function of the stabilimentum is unknown; however, it is theorized to _______.

a) Lure in insects
b) Warn birds of the web
c) Be a decorative pattern for the sake of mating

Keep scrolling to find out!

DOI & BLM National News

a high-power line tower.

Bureau of Land Management solicits initial public input on updating regulations for rights-of-way and renewable energy

The Bureau of Land Management is initiating a process to revise its regulations related to renewable energy permitting and linear rights-of-way on public lands. (BLM News Release)

hunter at upper Missouri river takes a break.

Interior Department announces largest expansion of fishing and hunting on U.S. Fish and Wildlife managed lands and waters

The Department of the Interior announced today that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has opened new or expanded hunting and sport fishing opportunities across 2.1 million acres, the largest expansion of outdoor recreation opportunities in recent history. (DOI Twitter)

Department of Interior Building

Interior Department Announces New Biden-Harris Appointees

The Interior announced additional Biden-Harris administration appointees who will work to advance President Biden’s agenda to tackle climate change, create good-paying union jobs in a clean energy economy, steward America’s public lands and waters, and honor relationships and trust responsibilities with Indigenous communities. (DOI News Release)

Question of the Week Answer

Answer: Yellow garden spiders build large, circular webs that can reach two feet in diameter! The dense area of silk that forms a zigzag pattern in the center is believed to help warn birds of the web. 

Source: USFWS Twitter The National Wildlife Federation

Photo courtesy of Brett Whaley/CC BY-NC 2.0.