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Out in the Tules

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The rounded hills by the Bay are the first thing that catch your eye at Coyote Hills Regional Park. But the brackish and freshwater marshes behind the hills have a charm of their own. Remnant of a once-extensive mix of tidal and freshwater wetlands that sustained a thriving Ohlone community for several thousand years, the marsh is now home to marsh wrens, muskrats, and one of the East Bay’s few remaining patches of tules.

Where the Elk and the Antelope Played

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A million years ago, in a climate much like ours today, the land around an ancestral bay teemed with large animals: mammoths and saber-tooth cats; bears, horses, and peccaries. By 300 years ago, the mammoths were gone, but grizzlies, elk, condor, and pronghorn were abundant.European settlers wiped out many of those animals, but programs to reintroduce some of them are now under way. Which raises the question: What should a healthy, native megafauna look like now?

Megafauna Resources

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To learn more about ancient megafauna and efforts to protect and restore the Bay Area’s megafauna: Megafauna Video Check out our feature article on the Bay Area’s prehistoric megafauna, and then watch KQED’s video on megafauna, part of their Quest … Read more

Book Review: A Dangerous Place

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by Marc Reisner, Pantheon Books, 2003, 181 pages, $22.   Don’t let the hyperinflated housing market fool you. The Bay Area is sit-uated atop some of the most seismically unappealing real estate in the world. In fact, the nine-county region … Read more

Book Review: Before California

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by Brian Fagan, Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2003, 288 pages, $24.95 (www.altamirapress.com).   In this new book archaeologist Brian Fagan succeeds in compiling various ele-ments of the history of California before European settlement, including archaeological discoveries, ecological changes, and anthropologic … Read more

Lodi Crane Festival

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Fall marks the height of bird migrations along the Pacific Flyway. And while the Bay Area has plenty of birds to see, you’ll have to head a bit farther east to see the spectacular sandhill cranes that winter in the … Read more