Tags >> Marin
Sep 19
2010

Extinct Clover

Posted by Bruce Robinson in wildlife , West County , research , rescue , preservation , open space , Marin , environment , education , coast , California

Bruce Robinson

The number of plants and animals listed as threatened or endangered is almost constantly growing. But only rarely does a species that was thought to be extinct make a come-back to join the endangered list. This is the story of just such a recovery, in the coastal hills of the North Bay.

It's now been a little more than 17 years since Connors made that first surprising discovery, but he clearly remembers the surprise and concern that accompanied that moment.

 Finding that single specimen in the first place was an enormous stroke of good fortune, Connors readily admits, and the fact that it survived to bear seeds seems nothing short of miraculous. Because even after he surrounded it with an improvised wire cage to protect the clover from hungry herbivores, it still narrowly escaped two nearly fatal encounters with inattentive humans, just in a mater of days. Connors recalls thatfortunatley it was his practice to stop by and check on the plant every other morning that late summer.

the_only_remaining_wild_pop.jpg

That first specimen, found on an inland hillside west of Occidental, has not reappeared, but three years later,Connors found a second wild patch of the same clover, growing on a coastal bluff in Marin county. That population, seen in the photograph at right, remains vital, in part because it lies on private property where it is less likely to be overrun by hikers or other visitors.

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

Aug 31
2010

Conservation Corps

Posted by Bruce Robinson in youth , waste , teens , students , Sonoma County , recycle , preservation , poverty , parks , nonprofit orgs , Marin , jobs , environment , employment , education , Cotati , conservation , activism

Bruce Robinson

What’s the antidote to gangs, unemployment and juvenile crime? In part, it’s the newly rechristened Conservation Corps North Bay.

Marilee Eckert, the organization's Executive Director, explains that their expansion into Sonoma County was begun in early 2009, with the support and encouragement of many local leaders.


08californiaxlarge1.jpgLooking ahead, Eckert sees a busy future for the Conservation Corps North Bay, doing more of what they are already working on.

 
In addition to referrals from established partner sources, individuals who are interesting in becoming part of the program can apply directly using the CCNB online application form.

The Conervation Corps was  featured previously on the North Bay Report when they launched their Sonoma County operations in January, 2009.

Aug 05
2010

International Forgiveness Day

Posted by Bruce Robinson in speaker , peace , nonprofit orgs , media , Marin , Ideas , homeless , families , current events , children , author , arts

Bruce Robinson

Holding on to old emotional wounds and resentments can be hard on your health, as well as your psyche. International Forgiveness Day, which is observed on August 8th, promotes the healing of those hurts.

Dr. Frederic Luskin, Director of the Stanford University Forgiveness Project, says practicing forgiveness offers numerous benefits.

Twin brothers Noah and Logan Miller, the co-writers and co-directors of the film Touching Home, say their autobiographical story of coming to terms with their difficult alcoholic father has resonated with a great many other families that had lived through similar issues.

The Logan brothers will be among the recipients of one of four awards at this year's International Forgiveness Day observation Aug. 8 in San Rafael, recognition that they find particularly meaningful.

See the trailer for Touching Home: [video:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dJSPluCR2PE 360x240]

 

Jul 15
2010

Cattle Brands of the North Bay

Posted by Bruce Robinson in speaker , Sonoma County , research , Marin , law enforcement , history , farms , author , animals , agriculture

Bruce Robinson

Branding cattle may evoke images of the old west a century ago, but it’s a still-active part of agriculture in the North Bay, with a lengthy history here, too.

Just as they were a century again, brands are used today to identify the legal owners of not just cattle, but horses, mules, burros, sheep and swine.

 

Ernie Ongaro (right) grew up on his family’s ranch along San Anselmo Creek, and began helping with the livestock branding at the age of 10. These days, he lives and raises beef cattle southwest of Sebastopol. Over the years he’s seen many familiar local brands go inactive (but his book includes both active and inactive brands from Marin and Sonoma counties). He’s also seen the shady practice of “overbranding” employed all the way into the present day.

 

You can see an array of sample brands below.

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