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Who builds those stick houses, anyway? Woodrats!

May 10, 2013 by Dan Rademacher

Stewart Gilbert of San Rafael writes to ask: “Who makes these homes built out of sticks? They’re very common at ...


Contra Costa Vector and Mosquito Control District

July 20, 2012 by Bay Nature

Our District consists of a modern force of certified, trained technicians that now execute a county-wide mosquito control program. Presently, the District uses state-of-the-art, environmentally-sound techniques combined with biological control agents that specifically target mosquito control. Environmentally sound techniques, reliable and efficient services, as well as programs to combat emerging diseases while preserving or enhancing our environment, are the critical elements in the success of the District for over 70 years.

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Of Mice and Birds at the Farallones

May 26, 2011 by Juliet Grable

U.S. Fish and Wildlife officials extended to June 10 the deadline for accepting public comments on a controversial proposal to eradicate nonnative house mice on the Southeast Farallon Islands. Opponents cite concerns that the poisons will endanger a range of wildlife on or near the islands, while proponents say the project will help threatened seabirds and the island ecosystem.

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Feds Seek Comment on Farallones Mouse-eradication Plan

May 11, 2011 by Juliet Grable

Now extended through June 10, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is seeking comment on a plan to use rodenticides to eradicate non-native house mice from the South Farallon Islands. Officials say the mice threaten nesting seabirds, but critics charge that the effort could actually endanger birds on the island.

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Beavers in Martinez

July 11, 2008 by Jody Zaitlin

Several beavers have taken up residence in downtown Martinez, and this summer may be the best time to see them, before they become more famous and attract bigger crowds or get forcibly ousted by the local government.

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Martinez Beavers

January 01, 2008 by Aleta George

Standing in the first light of dawn at the corner of Castro and Escobar streets in downtown Martinez, I searched ...

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Lord of the Burrows

January 01, 2008 by Kathleen M. Wong

Ask most people to name the most important species of our grassland habitats, and they'll probably pick coyotes, golden eagles, or even rattlesnakes. But experts say that the strongest contender of all is the animal eaten by all those other ones: the lowly California ground squirrel, a true keystone of local grasslands. Belowground, the squirrels' lengthy burrows harbor insects, snakes, owls, and even frogs and salamanders that couldn't live in such a dry landscape without the squirrels' help. And above-ground, they've evolved some unusual defenses that allow them to thrive, even as they feed so many others.

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At Home with the Packrats

October 01, 2007 by Alan Kaplan

What's that pile of sticks over there? It could be the home of a dusky-footed woodrat. If you could see inside, you'd find a tidy little home complete with bedrooms, a pantry, and even a few latrines!


The Gopher Underground

July 01, 2007 by David Carroll

Years ago, in my mother’s garden, an ominous mound appeared: a volcano- or horseshoe-shaped pile of earth with an off-center ...

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