Tag Archives: condor

Wind Farm Allowed to Kill Endangered Birds

26 May

California-Condor_Wikipediaby Kelly Fuller / American Bird Conservancy

Washington, D.C., May 24, 2013 – Today the U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM) published the Record of Decision and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s Biological Opinion for the Alta East Wind Project in California, which would for the first time allow a wind farm to kill an endangered California Condor without danger of prosecution. Fewer than 250 California Condors remain in the wild.

In response, American Bird Conservancy (ABC) is calling on the Department of the Interior to reverse the decision, charging that allowing the legal killing of one of the most imperiled birds in the United States threatens endangered species conservation efforts across the country.

Continue reading

Will Lead Bullets Finally Kill Off the California Condor?

7 May

by Ted Williams, Cross Posted from Yale Environment 360

gallery_california_condor_profile

It was almost like watching wooly mammoths parting tusk-high savannah. In the gusty air above the Grand Canyon relicts from the Ice Age wheeled and dipped. Through my binoculars I could make out numbers on the wing tags of these California condors, North America’s largest and arguably most endangered bird.

By 1982 only 22 remained on the planet. Then in a decision that outraged a large element of the environmental community, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced that all condors would be evacuated from the wild and bred in captivity. Friends of the Earth founder David Brower pled for “death with dignity.” But in 1993 the Peregrine Fund, a conservation organization, took on captive breeding, and the program proved a stunning success. After only three years, condor releases started in northern Arizona.

Today 234 birds are living in the wild (194 of them captive bred), but the prognosis for the species is scarcely brighter than in 1982; they’re being poisoned. When lead bullets strike bone they tend to splinter, impregnating meat and entrails with toxic fragments, any one of which can kill a condor. All manner of carrion-eating birds and mammals feast on the poisoned gut piles left when hunters field dress game.

Continue reading

New Treesit Goes Up in Willits, CA

7 May

Cross Posted from Save Little Lake Valley

Condor-1-4

Early on Friday morning, a new tree sit began in the path of Caltrans’ proposed Willits Bypass route. A contingent of roughly 20 Save Our Little Lake Valley members would meet with several key legislative staff people at the State Capitol—Alexis Podesta, Director of External Affairs for Gov. Edmund G. (Jerry) Brown, Gareth Lacy, Deputy Secretary of Communications & Strategic Planning and Brian Putler of the Business, Transportation & Housing Agency—hours later.

While we are unable to report on details of the meeting, we will say that Ms. Podesta was advised of the new tree sit and the message on its banner: “Gov. Brown, do the right thing, please (by telling the California Transportation Commission to cancel the funding at their Tuesday meeting in Los Angeles.)”

The tree sit is located in an Oregon ash grove north of Willits  – part of the nearly 90 acres of wetlands CalTrans intends to fill, piledrive, and pave over in the Willits Valley, of which an unknown number would also be wick drained.

The tree sit is visible from Highway 101! It is approximately a mile north of the high school. It is located at around mile maker 48.5. The tree sitter, Condor, is perched in one of the only oak trees in the grove, a valley oak that appears to be several hundred years old.