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The Mono-logue » Birds

Posts Tagged ‘Birds’

Mono Lake’s California Gulls safe for the season

Thursday, May 25th, 2017 by Geoff, Executive Director
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A mile of citizen-funded solar-powered electric fence is up and running, protecting Mono Lake’s nesting gulls—one of the three largest colonies in the world—from mainland predators. The fence is the result of a year and a half of planning by the Mono Lake Committee and California State Parks along with other agency partners, a dedicated local installation team, and generous funding from Mono Lake supporters across the country.

The temporary electric fence stretching one mile across the landbridge has 11 motion-activated wildlife cameras with infrared nighttime flash capability along its length. In late April, camera #5 documented a coyote walking the fence line, confirming that the fence is functioning as a coyote barrier. Mono Lake Committee wildlife camera photo.

Why is the temporary fence—which will be removed when nesting is finished—needed? Five years of drought lowered Mono Lake seven feet, shrinking the protective moat of water between the lake’s north shore and Negit Island and adjacent islets—exposing a landbridge that allows coyotes access to the lake’s long-established nesting colony of California Gulls. Last summer signs were found on a few of these islets that coyotes had indeed walked the landbridge and then swum the remaining 500 feet or so of shallow water to prey on eggs and chicks, disrupting nesting and causing gulls to be suspicious of returning to these sites in future years.

Not a typical fence site

The electric mesh netting fence used for the project (more…)

Fence post: An update from Mono Lake’s landbridge

Friday, April 21st, 2017 by Elin, Communications Coordinator
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The temporary electrified fence protecting Mono Lake’s nesting California Gulls has been up and running for about three weeks now. After a long and snowy winter the gulls’ calls signal spring’s arrival, and it’s gratifying to know that as they build nests and lay eggs out on the islands, they are protected from coyote predation.

Gull researcher Kristie Nelson works on one of the fence sections that extends into Mono Lake. Photo by Geoff McQuilkin.

The fence stretches for about one mile across the landbridge, and is made up of five sections that overlap—an electrified long middle section, two shorter electrified sections at the ends near the water’s edge, and two passive sections at (more…)

Mono Lake bookstore sale: Gems from the past

Saturday, January 10th, 2015 by Mono Lake Committee Staff
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ML Explorations & Reflections2This post was written by Barbara Ball, 2015 Information Center & Bookstore Manager.

Here at the Mono Lake Committee, if we have something wonderful, we tend to hold onto it. We guard our beautiful lake against excessive water diversions, against pollution, against anything that could threaten its unique ecosystem. And sometimes if we have anything at all that is precious, we tend to keep it close.

However, hanging on to what we love can occasionally be detrimental for our bookstore storage and also for you who love the lake, who love the Mono Basin and California outdoors, but may not know what we have tucked away. In an effort at spring cleaning, we are going through our storage and pulling out a (more…)

Holiday shopping: For the kids

Sunday, December 7th, 2014 by Robbie, Restoration Field Technician
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Season’s greetings from the Mono Lake Committee! What better way to treat the young ones in your life this holiday season than with a gift from the Committee’s online store? Our 2014 fall catalog offers several items for kids that are educational, fun, and help save Mono Lake:

Books:
–    A Partridge in a Pear Tree by Charley Harper is a playful rendition of “The Twelve Days of Christmas” and contains beautiful pastel sketches, humorous text, and a message of the value of giving.
–    Angry Birds: 50 True Stories of the Fed Up, Feathered, and Furious by Mel White reveals astonishing stories of real bird behavior.
–    BirdWingFeather by Siri Schillios contains vibrant bird paintings on one page and detailed abstracts on the next.
–    Stickeen by John Muir and illustrated by Carl Dennis Buell is an illustrated edition of an American adventure classic of John Muir and Stickeen the dog crossing a glacier during an ice storm. (more…)

Tenth annual Chautauqua a soaring success

Thursday, June 23rd, 2011 by Elin, Communications Coordinator
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Last weekend over 300 people gathered in Lee Vining for the tenth annual Mono Basin Bird Chautauqua.

During 76 field trips, workshops, and presentations, (more…)

Summer update: Crowd-free Labor Day weekend expected

Thursday, September 3rd, 2009 by Greg, Information & Restoration Specialist
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American Avocets feed on Alkali Flies as the near-perfect summer weather continues at Mono Lake. Photo by Claire Skinner.

American Avocets feed on Alkali Flies as the near-perfect summer weather continues at Mono Lake. Photo by Claire Skinner.

With Tioga Road (Hwy 120) closed west of White Wolf in Yosemite National Park, Labor Day weekend crowds will be smaller than usual in the Mono Basin. Smoke from the Big Meadow Fire near Crane Flat is mostly going north of the Mono Basin. The fire is now 70% contained but road closures will remain in effect at least through the holiday weekend. Click here for the latest on the Yosemite fire.

WEATHER
Warm days and cool nights. Highs near 80 and lows in the 40s. Smoke in the north part of the Mono Basin is intermittent, with some clear and some smoky days. Skies over (more…)

Summer Update: Daily thunderstorms

Thursday, July 30th, 2009 by Greg, Information & Restoration Specialist
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The busy days of midsummer are in full swing, we’re even seeing visitation numbers higher than previous years. So far it has been a great summer for thunderstorms!

WEATHER
Warm, with highs in the 80s and lows in the 50s. Nearby thunderstorms are keeping the sky very interesting. On Sunday afternoon it rained in Lee Vining for half an hour.!Thunderstorms remain in the forecast through (more…)

Spring update: Warm weather increases runoff

Wednesday, May 20th, 2009 by Greg, Information & Restoration Specialist
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Since the first week in May, cold and windy weather has been replaced by warm and calmer weather. This sudden change caused trees to leaf out, flowers to bloom, bugs and birds to come out, and snowmelt to dramatically increase. Sonora Pass opened last week and Tioga Pass opened yesterday. The last two weeks have been a burst of springtime activity! (more…)

Spring Update: Roads and businesses open; birds & flowers

Friday, April 17th, 2009 by Greg, Information & Restoration Specialist
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Today the Mono Cone and Monitor Pass both opened! Osprey are seen daily in Lee Vining and the very first flowers are blooming along the Lee Vining Creek Trail!

WEATHER
A snowstorm every few days has kept the air cool and the ground wet, and typically brings strong winds along with it. The weather is finally expected to warm up early next week with highs in the (more…)

Mono Basin Bird Chautauqua

Wednesday, April 15th, 2009 by Mono Lake Committee Staff
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The 8th Annual Mono Basin Bird Chautauqua is June 19-21, 2009. Registration opened early Wednesday April 15th and over 100 people registered during the first three hours. Twenty of the sixty events were full by midday.

There is still a lot of room left in many of the still-open events, especially since this year, Friday June 19th is a full day of events. In previous years most of Friday’s events started in the evening.

To view the programs, schedule, and to register, visit www.birdchautauqua.org.

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