- Author: Pamela Kan-Rice
While Californians are tightening their pipes to conserve water during this fourth year of drought, the California black rail might say, “Let it leak,” if it could speak.
The rare bird species makes its home in marshes created in large part by leaky pipes, stock ponds, irrigation tailwater and unlined canals. Even the springs that support some habitat may rely on water flowing from leaky canals. In 1994, UC Agriculture and Natural Resources scientists found the small, red-eyed bird with the black breast and speckled black feathers at UC ANR's Sierra Foothill Research and Extension Center. Since its discovery, a group of scientists have been...
- Author: Jeannette E. Warnert
Goats' penchant for eating almost any plant material can make them a valuable management tool for landowners faced with a yellow starthistle infestation.
Yellow starthistle is thought to have been introduced into California from Chile during the Gold Rush. The weed readily took hold in California valleys and foothills, thriving in areas where the soil has been disturbed by animals grazing, road construction and wildland firebreaks. Today, yellow starthistle is a very common sight in vacant lots and fields, along roadsides and trails, in pastures and ranch lands, and in parks, open-space preserves and natural areas.
Capable of growing six feet tall and bearing flowers surrounded by inch-long spines, yellow...