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April 2019

Tropical species visited Northern California in marine heat wave


Northern California has notoriously cold waters cooled by a current that flows from Alaska. But during much of 2014-16, those waters turned uncharacteristically warmer due to a long-lasting marine heat wave. The balmy waters drew dozens of species normally seen in far to the south, some of which had never been seen north of San Francisco before, according to new research from scientists at the NRS's Bodega Marine Reserve. Read more >>
2019 Boyd super bloom

The winter of 2019 inundated California in an exceptional amount of rain and snow. Wildflowers erupted in a super bloom across the state's southern deserts. Plants and animals at the UC Natural Reserve System's Boyd Deep Canyon Desert Research Center made the most of this rarity in the desert: abundant moisture. View full size >>
mountain stream with boulders flows past conifers

Drought in Sierra streams


It might seem strange to be talking about drought in a record-breaking water year for California. But a new study from David Herbst at the NRS's Sierra Nevada Aquatic Research Laboratory indicates that good, wet times may become too rare to keep Sierra streams healthy. The study found populations of aquatic insects and fishes declined markedly during the recent multi-year drought. Read more >>   
road collapsed due to slide with water pouring down rim

Rains force reserve closure


When clouds dumped record levels of snow and rain over the San Jacinto Mountains this February, something was bound to break. That something turned out to be the hillsides holding up local access roads. Torrential rains washed out two state highways, completely isolating the NRS's James San Jacinto Mountains Reserve. While reserve staff evacuated to safety, the James could be be closed through May. Read more >>

NRS IN THE NEWS

Tropical jellyfish, eels and sea butterflies are pouring into California’s coast, thanks to a ‘warm-water blob’
Bodega Marine Reserve
Los Angeles Times 

Ocean heat wave brought 67 rare, warm-water species to North Coast
Bodega Marine Reserve
Press Democrat

Species by the dozen moved north during marine heatwaves
Bodega Marine Reserve
Associated Press

Rain brings 2nd California super bloom in two years
Steele/Burnand Anza-Borrego Desert Research Center
Associated Press

A tribute to Don Canestro 
Kenneth S. Norris Rancho Marino Reserve
Bulletin of the Ecological Society of America
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Boyd Deep 
Canyon Lecture


April 11

The fantastic courtships of Costa's hummingbirds

Professor Chris Clark of UC Riverside will describe his ongoing research on Costa’s hummingbirds courtship displays, including the sounds they make with their wings and tail-feathers, and how they learn their songs.

6 p.m., UCR Palm Desert, 75080 Frank Sinatra Drive, Palm Desert, CA 

Register >> 

White Mountain Public Lectures


The NRS's White Mountain Research Center is hosting the following talks as part of its 2019 public lecture series. All talks begin at 7 p.m. 3000 E. Line St., Bishop. WMRC Public Lectures >>

Apr. 2
Dry/wet snow recipes for unusual avalanches: avalanche forecasting challenges in a changing climate
Sue Burak, Snow Survey Associates

Apr. 9
Climate change impacts in alpine plant communities
Meredith Jabis, UC Berkeley

Apr. 30
What do migrants do differently? Identifying habitat for Sierra Nevada bighorn sheep
Derek Spitz, University of Montana

Sagehen Service Award


The Sagehen Forest Project received a 2019 Chancellor's Public Service Award for campus-community partnerships from UC Berkeley chancellor Carol Christ. Sagehen Creek Field Station directors Jeff Brown and Faerthen Felix will accept the award April 29 at a campus ceremony. 

Polka dot party


The spotted sandpiper teeter-totters its tail up and down nonstop as it walks. This makes Actitis macularius among the easiest of the notoriously similar "peeps" to identify in North America. Adults in breeding plumage display distinctive brown flecks on their otherwise white underparts. Breeding birds often reverse typical avian sex roles. Females defend territories and mate with multiple males. Fathers incubate the eggs and raise the chicks (which may or may not be theirs). This handsome bird was photographed by Lobsang Wandu at the NRS's Scripps Coastal Reserve.
butterfly on yellow flower: link to NRS Giving webpage

NRS giving


Please consider supporting the the work of the Natural Reserve System in the coming year. You can select the reserves or programs you're most interested in on the NRS Giving pages. Our students and library of ecosystems benefit tremendously from your support. Give now >>
 
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