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Old Hills, New Economies

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The vast expanse of rugged country east of high-tech Santa Clara Valley, crowned by the Bay Area’s highest peak, has been a refuge for wild species—humans included—for a very long time.

Out of an Ancient Sea

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The oak-dotted, rounded hills of Contra Costa and eastern Alameda counties are a familiar sight, but do you know how they got to be that way?

Peering into Muddy Waters

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One measure of the ecological richness of the Bay is its role as a major nursery for five resident species of sharks.

What makes wildflowers so colorful?

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At the precise moment we are looking at them, flowers are sending light rays back to us. But not all of them are sending us the same kind of light in the same way. The different colors are different wavelengths … Read more

Rivers in the Bay

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San Francisco Bay presented a thrilling—yet possibly lethal—mystery to a young Spanish captain as he sailed up to probe the entry to the Golden Gate for the first time on the morning of August 5, 1775. Juan Manuel de Ayala … Read more

The Art of Restoration

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The air over Cullinan Ranch is cool and moist. Only the faintest gray line marks the location, south across San Pablo Bay, of the East Bay hills. The wetlands here, just north of Route 37, bear imprints of human use. … Read more