You are hereLiving Things

Living Things


Descriptions, experiences, pictures and videos of Living Things in the Sierras.

Alex Wierbinski's picture

Global Warming Spruce Beetles are Fat, Happy, Sexed-Up Spruce Beetles sticky icon

 

ECO-CRASHING NEWS: GOING BUGGY

Hey, Hi,... I'm Your New Neighbor...
The Head of a Spruce Beetle (Dendroctonus rufipennis)
The Head of a Spruce Beetle (Dendroctonus rufipennis), Joseph Benzel, Colorado State University.
Joseph Benzel, Colorado State University.

 

Warm Spruce Beetles are Fat, Happy, Sexed-Up Spruce Beetles

New Research Shows Importance of Climate on Spruce Beetle Flight,
Colorado State University, June 19, 2019.

MAIN POINTS

Current Situation
"...the current spruce beetle epidemic affecting Colorado Engelmann spruce forests has been one of the largest on record. The Colorado State Forest Service estimates that since 1996, over 40 percent of the state's high-elevation forests, encompassing an area larger than Delaware and Rhode Island combined, have already been affected by this latest cycle."

The Future
"...slightly warmer conditions could contribute to longer flight periods and more eruptive beetle populations, due to larger populations of fertile females. This combination could equate to more intense insect pressure on spruce forests."

Alex Wierbinski's picture

US Commercial Bees Taking Heavy Losses in 2018, Hanging in There... sticky icon

 

THE BUZZ

Bees in the Hive at Roberson Farm
Bees in the Hive at Roberson Farm, Farmers.Gov.
Bees at Roberson Farm, FarmersGov.

US Bee Status Report

Commercial Bees Taking Heavy Losses, Hanging in There...

US Beekeepers Lost Over 40% of Colonies Last Year, Highest Winter Losses Ever recorded,
University of Maryland, June 19, 2019.

MAIN POINTS

Year
41% Hive Loss
"Beekeepers across the United States lost 40.7% of their honey bee colonies from April 2018 to April 2019..."

Over-Wintering Losses
"...winter losses of 37.7%, which is the highest winter loss reported since the survey began 13 years ago and 8.9 percentage points higher than the survey average."

The New Normal?
"Overall, the annual loss of 40.7% this last year represents a slight increase over the annual average of 38.7%."

Alex Wierbinski's picture

Lawsuit Asks: Drought, Beetles, & Forest Mortality Justifies Chainsaws in Wilderness? sticky icon

Updated June 17: Forest Service Reverses Decision

Updated May 31: Behind the Decision Allowing Chainsaws

FORESTS, TREES, & PLANTS

The Situation
Sierra Nevada & Rockies
Massive Western Forest Mortality
Dying Sierra Trees, from UC Merced, can they survive another drought?
Dying Sierra Trees, from UC Merced, can they survive another drought?

 

Drought, Beetles, & Mortality Justifies Chainsaws?

Forest Service Sued over Decision to use Chain Saws in Wilderness Areas,
The Journal, May 22, 2019.

MAIN POINTS

"A coalition of conservation groups has sued the U.S. Forest Service for its recent decision to allow chain saws for trail work in two wilderness areas in Southwest Colorado."

Alex Wierbinski's picture

News of Fish, Water, Oceans, Ice, & People, Winter & Spring of 2019 sticky icon

News of Fish, Water, Oceans, Ice, & People,

Winter & Spring
2019

This is the High Sierra
Fish, Oceans, Ice, Sealife, & Water News



The Fish News has been stretching into Fish & River News, now into covering Water Issues generally. We cover water as it stands, pools, flows, freezes, and precipitates. A step further, we cover how water affects the things that most directly depend on it, the things that grow, swim, drink, ship, & store water.

 

NOAA West Coast Fisheries

All Sierra Snow

All Sierra Precip

 

Earlier

2018

2015-17 Fish, Ice, Oceans, WATER, & People NEWS & RESEARCH

 

 

2019

Updated

 

June 19 

OCEANS, ICE, WATER, & FISH

Alex Wierbinski's picture

TREE & PLANT NEWS: The Winter & Spring of 2019 sticky icon

 

All Tree News
Generally Covering the Plant World

 

 TREE & PLANT
NEWS

Winter & Spring
of
2019

 

Previously
2015 through 2018 Tree News

 

All
High Sierra Fire and Smoke Information

High Sierra Tree Identification Resources

Tree Forum

 


The Brethren

FERGUSON FIRE

Updated

Previously
2015 through 2018 Tree News

Top

2019

 

June 17

FORESTS, TREES, WILDERNESS EXPERIENCES, & THE LAW

Worse Idea in the World: Bicycles in Wilderness

Alex Wierbinski's picture

News of Fish, Water, Oceans, Ice, & People, 2018 sticky icon

News of Fish, Water, Oceans, Ice, & People, 2018

This is the High Sierra
Fish, Oceans, Ice, Sealife, & Water News



The Fish News has been stretching into Fish & River News, now into covering Water Issues generally. We cover water as it stands, pools, flows, freezes, and precipitates. A step further, we cover how water affects the things that most directly depend on it, the things that grow, swim, drink, ship, & store water.

 

NOAA West Coast Fisheries

All Sierra Snow

All Sierra Precip

 

Next Fish, Oceans, Ice, & Water News
2019

Previous Water News
2015-17 Fish, Ice, Oceans, WATER, & People NEWS & RESEARCH

 

 

2018

 

Last 2018
Update

 

December 21

 

OCEANS, ICE, WATER, & MAN

Alex Wierbinski's picture

All BUGS, SPIDERS & Other Mountain INSECT NEWS sticky icon

The World of Insects and the Spiders that Eat Them

We've got worlds of wonder in the High Sierra looking in any direction. The ground and sky are full of vibrant insect communities. Some, like the mosquitoes, are winged devils. Others are winged delights. On the ground we find spiders trying to catch and eat them all.

This forum started out as the Spider Forum, but has been expanded to include the various insects we encounter that are not Bees, Butterflies, and Mosquitoes, which have their own dedicated pages.

Spiders
&
Other
High Sierra Insects

IDENTIFICATION

 

Greg Lasley
SPIDERS

 

Greg Lasley
INSECTS

 

Insect Societies

Spider Sites Index
arachnology.be


SpiderIdentification.org

American Arachnological Society

 

How Ticks Work

Alex Wierbinski's picture

Bee News sticky icon

Bee News 

BEE WORRIED

Insect Identification

Latest All Bug News

 

BEE NEWS

THE BUZZ

Updated

2019

 June 20

THE BUZZ

Commercial Bees Taking Heavy Losses, Hanging in There...

US Beekeepers Lost Over 40% of Colonies Last Year, Highest Winter Losses Ever

 

 

 

June 7, 2019

 

EURO-BEE NEWS

16% Colony Loss over Winter of 2018

2018 Annual Euro-Bee Count

 

 

April 22

 

US BEE NEWS

Massive Bee Declines in Michigan

Alex Wierbinski's picture

BUTTERFLY NEWS sticky icon

Video embed: 
See video

Endless Butterflies Video

 

Identification
Art Shapiro High Sierra Butterfly Identification by Common Name

 

Trail Guide
High Sierra Butterfly Identification & Resources

 

Review
High Sierra Nevada All Living Things Forum

 

 

BUTTERFLY NEWS
 The whole web of life is being distorted by the  changing character of the seasons on and around the the vastness of the North Pacific Ocean.

 The Sierra Nevada Mountain Range is a significant element in the complex relationship of the North Pacific Ocean weather patterns with the North American continent.

 The relationship between North Pacific weather patterns and the High Sierra is vitally important for the vast overlapping webs of social and natural life depending on bountiful and predictable weather patterns.
These predictable and bountiful resources no longer exist on their own, in Nature, nor in the context of the vast populations to overwhelm Nature that we have spawned.

We have overwhelmed Nature and its resources fundamentally and on its face..

Alex Wierbinski's picture

High Sierra Mammals Reference-Identification sticky icon

High Sierra Small Mammals Forum, Identification, and References 

 

 

References

Mammals, identification, Greg Lasley Photography.

Mammals of Yosemite National Park, (1952) by Harry C. Parker.

For more links about animal, plant, geology, and astronomy information for backpackers see the High Sierra Backpacking links page on the trail guide.

 

 

MAMMAL NEWS

 

 Last Update

 

2019

 

March 27

SMALL MOUNTAIN MAMMALS

The Kangaroo Jumping Rat

Alex Wierbinski's picture

Cold Blooded Guides & News sticky icon

High Sierra
&
General
Frog & Reptile
News and Information

I've got to gather all the frog news here, which is spread out over the monthly news reports.

In the meantime, signed-in members can review previous Frog reports using the site search feature.

 

Goal
Identify and understand the frogs, lizards, and snakes we encounter.

 

Field Notes
The Frog, Reptile, & Snake Forum

 

The mountain yellow-legged frog Site
 MyFrog.info

 

Links from MyFrog & to
frog and reptile resources

 

 

Frog Identification

Guides
The Best of Breed

MyHerps.com:
A Guide to the Amphibians and Reptiles of California

California Frogs Photo Idenification

Alex Wierbinski's picture

Sierra Nevada Hiking and backpacking with Dogs sticky icon

Hiking Dogs in the High Sierra

 

High Sierra Hiking Dog News,
below, & Links

 

Introduction

I consider dogs an integral part of High Sierra Trail Culture, and have met some fine canines along the long trails. 

Alex Wierbinski's picture

Monkeys Face Climate Change Extinction Threat

 

ANTHROPOCENE

Guatemalan Black Howler
Guatemalan black howler (Alouatta pigra) in Belize Zoo. Dave Johnson.
Guatemalan black howler (Alouatta pigra), a New World Monkey in the Belize Zoo. Dave Johnson, Wiki.

 

Background of Destruction

Monkeys Face Climate Change Extinction Threat,
University of Stirling, June 12, 2019.

MAIN POINTS

Global Monkey Trouble
"...a large percentage of non-human primates - including monkeys, lemurs and apes - are facing substantial temperature increases and marked habitat changes over the next 30 years."

Esp New World
"New World monkeys - which live primarily in tropical South America - will be particularly affected."

Alex Wierbinski's picture

2018 Annual Euro-Bee Count

 

THE BUZZ

Honey Bee Visiting Flowers
Western Honey Bee, Wiki, Louis Docker.
Western Honey Bee, Wiki, Louis Docker.

 

Annual Euro Bee Count

Honey Bee Colonies Down by 16%,
University of Strathclyde, June 5, 2019.

MAIN POINTS

Mostly Euro-Count
"...survey of 25,363 beekeepers in 36 countries..."

"...33 countries in Europe - including the four nations of the UK - along with Algeria, Israel and Mexico."

Count & Amount
16.3% Lost in 2017-18
"...out of 544,879 colonies...at the start of winter, 89124 were lost..."

Previous Years
20.9% colony loss in 2016-17.

12.0% colony loss in 2015-16.

"Loss of honey bee colonies is a highly complex issue."

 

 

Bee Troubles

2019: Massive Bee Declines in Michigan since 2000

 

Alex Wierbinski's picture

Fishing Fleets Grown and Growing far Beyond Fish Stocks & Fish Fertility

 

OCEANS, ICE, WATER, & FISH

Fleets Grown and Growing far Beyond Fish Stocks & Fish Fertility

More fishing vessels chasing fewer fish, new study finds,
University of Tasmania, May 27, 2019.

MAIN POINTS

Global Fishing Fleet Doubled, Catch Fell 80%
"...the world's fishing fleet doubled in size over the 65-years to 2015 but for the amount of effort expended the catch fell more than 80 per cent."

Mighty Fleet
"...the global fishing fleet grew from 1.7 million vessels in 1950 to 3.7 million in 2015."

Fish & Fertility Decline
"...the findings reflect growing pressure on marine resources and a fall in the abundance of fish."

As the Fleet Grows
"What we have seen over the last 65 years is more and more fishing vessels chasing fewer fish."

Fish vs Fleet
"...this measure paints a dark picture of the state of the ocean's resources."

Demand Growing as Resources Shrink
"...Southeast Asia, Latin America and the Southern Mediterranean indicates their fisheries expanded at a much faster rate than fish stocks could support."

Alex Wierbinski's picture

Wolf Return Conflicts & Solutions

Updated
Dogs Present Genetic Threat

 

LIVING THINGS and GENERAL NEWS

Endangered Wolves Moving into Northern California
Wolves Moving into Northern California. Lassen Pack 6, remote trail camera, June 29, 2017, CDFG.
Lassen Pack 6, remote trail camera, June 29, 2017, CDFG. Bigger, and More.

 

Wolf Return Conflicts & Solutions

The Return of the Wolves,
University of Freiburg, May 20, 2019.

MAIN POINTS

Success Breeds Problems
"The current return of wolves to human-dominated landscapes poses a major challenge for the protection of this species."

This Study
"...analyzed the existing knowledge on how to deal with large carnivores living in the wild in Europe and other parts of the world."

Alex Wierbinski's picture

F&W Service Extends Comment Period on Proposed Delisting of Gray Wolves

 

LIVING THINGS & GENERAL NEWS

RETURNEE
Rare Californian: Adult gray wolf

Adult gray wolf in Lassen National Forest, July 2018. Photo by T. Rickman, USFS.
Happy Boy! Adult gray wolf in Lassen National Forest, July 2018. Photo by T. Rickman, USFS. More rare Ca Gray Wolves.

 

Gray Wolf
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Short-Changing Gray Wolf

F&W Service Extends Comment Period on Proposed Delisting of Gray Wolves

Service Extends Comment Period on Proposed Delisting of Gray Wolves

"The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is re-affirming the success of this recovery with a proposal to remove all gray wolves from protection under Endangered Species Act (ESA)."

"The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is extending by 60 days the public comment period on a proposed rule to remove the gray wolf from the List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife under the Endangered Species Act."

 

Alex Wierbinski's picture

Rana Virus Expanding in England with Expanding Warmth

 

FROGS

Sweet Little Common Frog
England's Common frog (Rana temporaria), Greg Hitchock, Zoological Society of London.
England's Common frog (Rana temporaria), Greg Hitchock, Zoological Society of London.

 

Rana Virus Expanding with Expanding Warmth

Climate change responsible for severe infectious disease in UK frogs,
Zoological Society of London, May 9, 2019.

MAIN POINTS

UK Frogs
"Climate change has already increased the spread and severity of a fatal disease caused by Ranavirus that infects common frogs (Rana temporaria) in the UK..."

Heat-Disease Correlation
"Historic trends in mass-mortality events attributed to the disease were found to match the pattern of increased temperatures recorded over recent decades..."

Alex Wierbinski's picture

Bald Cypress in Wetland Forests are East Coast's Oldest Trees

 

AMAZING ANCIENT LIFE in the WETLAND FORESTS

Prof. David Stahle in North Carolina’s Black River
Prof. David Stahle in North Carolina’s Black River, UARK Research Frontiers, Photo by Dan Griffin.
UARK Research Frontiers, Photo by Dan Griffin.

 

Bald Cypress in Wetland Forests are East Coast's Oldest Trees

Researchers document the oldest known trees in eastern North America,
University of Arkansas, May 9, 2019.

MAIN POINTS

Oldest Trees in East US
"A recently documented stand of bald cypress trees in North Carolina, including one tree at least 2,624 years old, are the oldest known living trees in eastern North America and the oldest known wetland tree species in the world."

"...discovered the trees in 2017 in a forested wetland preserve along the Black River south of Raleigh, North Carolina."

Long Run of Ancient Trees
"The ancient trees are part of an intact ecosystem that spans most of the 65-mile length of the Black River."

Alex Wierbinski's picture

FROGS & AMPHIBIANS: New Count Finds More Trouble

 

FROGS

Sierran Treefrog
Noble Lake, Carson Iceberg Wilderness, PCT-TYT, more info.
Noble Lake, Carson Iceberg Wilderness, PCT-TYT, more info. Frog Forum.

 

New Count Finds More Trouble

Many more amphibian species at risk of extinction than previously thought,
Yale University, May 6, 2019.

MAIN POINTS

Status
"Amphibians are highly threatened and are declining worldwide at an unprecedented rate."

Change
"...1,012 additional species of amphibians who have now been newly identified as at risk of extinction..."

Why
"Until this study, less than two-thirds of all amphibian species had been assessed for extinction risk by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN)..."

Powered by Drupal, an open source content management system

Latest News: RSS FEED

Syndicate content

Support Tahoe to Whitney

The Tahoe to Whitney Trail Guide and Magazine are walked, written, funded, and supported by my efforts, with the help of kindred spirits and my sister.

We offer valuable Trail Guide, Skills, Weather, News and Analysis.

My goal is to get you out to see your natural and social potential. Help me keep this unique resource accessible and expanding towards its potential. We've a lot of miles to cover ahead...

I NEED HELP!
If you feel these efforts are valuable, I'm cordially inviting you to support them, here:

 

 

I am currently working towards publishing the completed guide between Tahoe & Yosemite as an e-book, while converting this "blog" to a fine magazine format. You will like the results! Help Tahoe to Whitney reach its potential!

 

Why Support Tahoe to Whitney?
Mission Statement