The real plight of the Snowy Plover

The real plight of the Snowy Plover

There are 43 comments on the Eureka Times Standard story from Dec 9, 2010, titled The real plight of the Snowy Plover. In it, Eureka Times Standard reports that:

In a recent "My Word" piece, Mr. Uri Driscoll expressed a wide range of opinions and observations regarding the current management practices directed at recovering the threatened Snowy Plover.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Eureka Times Standard.

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Mara

AOL

#1 Dec 9, 2010
Ya, the fact that cars are driving on the beach is laughable. Like the roads aren't enough? I've watching people doing donuts and tearing up and down the beach while people are walking on it! I can't imagine what it's like to be a little snowy plovery hatchling and being ran over by humans who have nothing better to do.

People can have fun and enjoy the beach without destroying it. Apparently rules have to be enacted and ENFORCED to keep the self-absorbed people from destroying it for the rest of us (plovers and people).
uri

Santa Rosa, CA

#2 Dec 9, 2010
It is sad when so many words say so little. Unaddressed here are the concerns for the plover and the existing habitat. The activities that we entrusted the "experts" with have shown not only negetive results as far as numbers go it is also contributing to the significant disturbance and destruction of our dunes and wetlands. When is common sense going to say enough is enough.
If we could just go back to the time when we could use the beach and dunes freely, the dunes were more stable and the freshwater wetlands the foredunes protected were safe from encroching sand and saltwater, we could more frequently spot plovers and some chicks but they had the beach grass cover to dash into readily available. And we had all that money to spend on something more defendable and productive such as stream restoration.
Maybe you noticed that all the plover woes seem to all stem back to humans according to this essay. Maybe these experts just want our beaches all to themselves.
Anonymous

Arcata, CA

#3 Dec 9, 2010
You said it Uri. When do I get to ride my dunebuggy all over those plover eggs again? Damn environmentalists!
tony the tiger

Eureka, CA

#4 Dec 9, 2010
I made Uri a plover omelet to go with his frosted flakes.

He said it was GGGRRRRReeeeaaaTTT!!!!
uri

Santa Rosa, CA

#5 Dec 9, 2010
Does anyone have anything intelligent to say?
Anonymous

Arcata, CA

#6 Dec 9, 2010
I think they did in the article.
Chas Netzow

Eureka, CA

#7 Dec 9, 2010
Thank You, Thank You, Thank You!
I am so relieved to read a sensible and measured opinion piece that destroys the previous wholly disconnected piece by Mr. Driscoll. As far as Mr. Driscoll's "common sense for the popular man" piece goes to discredit government and science, this piece presented by the scientific community serves to remind readers that when you put emotions aside, you will see that there is a problem and it is not that we don't get to ride, walk or drive on "our" beach. The problem is how to save the plover, and we can do it!

So, Uri, please open your viewshed and get on the same side of the fence as the plover!
Terry

Eureka, CA

#8 Dec 9, 2010
Yes Uri, intelligent things were said in the letter/opinion piece you are commenting on. SNOWY PLOVERS AREN'T HELPED BY DASHING INTO THE COVER OF INVASIVE BEACH GRASS!, a concept apparently too scientific for your horsey brain to grasp. They nest in open areas and rely on "early detection" of predators. These open areas are fenced off during breeding season,...boohoo Uri you and your pooping horse can't ride there for part of the year.

"If we could back to a time"...try going back further Uri, when the rivers had fish and didn't carrying a huge sediment load, salt marshes covered 90% more area and were teaming with life, Humboldt Bay was in a healthy self-flushing balance because the salt marshes were functioning as nature's great interface between land and the bay!
European beach grass was introduced and it has not been good for the native flora and fauna, it doesn't belong here Uri, can you understand that?
The overpopulation of predatory ravens is largely due to humans and their garbage. Ravens mainly, humans, dogs,horses and cars are trampling, stealing or eating the eggs of the Western Snowy Plover.
P.S. Uri you are a not the sharpest crayon, please try to open your mind and quit whining about where you can't ride your horse.
Dan Edrich

Arcata, CA

#9 Dec 9, 2010
Mark Colwell and Matt Johnson, why are you using the term 'restoration?' Your work doesn't qualify according to definition by the Natural Resources Council. Why not call it 'landscaping' for that is exactly what it is.
I invite you both and your students to Manila, you do have some explaining to do.
A more shameful example of a 'restoration' I've never seen. Your myopic approach is literally fragmenting our peninsula. Indefensible; loss of wetland, dishonest appraisal of ecotype, loss of aquifer and introduction of erosion. This is fad environmentalism taken to the point of criminality.
$28,500,000 to destabilize our shoreline, what is your cut?
Eric

San Francisco, CA

#10 Dec 9, 2010
Would someone contact Mr. Snowy Plover and tell him to get hold of Mr. Spotted Owl to figure out how to get off the threatened list? What a complete load of crap and we are excited to see what is endangered next, the Ornithodorus Coriaceus perhaps?

That means "Tick" for those who don't habla.
Little Birdy

United States

#12 Dec 9, 2010
Colwell/Johnson claim they'll "rely on scientific evidence". Yet, when they get to the part about the filmed observation that the ravens are causing
70% of the plover loss they blame the ravens on humans because...wait for it..."ravens are particularly abundant (probably because garbage left by humans attracts scavenging ravens)."
PROBABLY?
That sounds real peer reviewed scientific...
extinction is forever

Mountain View, CA

#13 Dec 9, 2010
Lil' Birdy-
Ravens and Plovers have both been around for a very long time. how do you explain that there is only a problem now?
Eric

Redwood City, CA

#14 Dec 9, 2010
It isn't a problem, it is a tool or convenience to accomplish another goal.
Dino

United States

#15 Dec 9, 2010
Let the damn T Rex have a stab at it.
Little Birdy

United States

#16 Dec 9, 2010
The ravens are winning a battle that has nothing to do with humans.
25 years ago I had a problem with pigeons hanging out on my roof. 13 years ago a couple of ravens arrived on my roof and the pigeons problem disappeared.(And there never was or has been any loose garbage in my neighborhood.)
Just as the barred owls are kicking the northern spotted owls' ass, the ravens are beating up the pigeons and the plovers.
Not a damn thing humans can do about it...
Observer

Rolla, MO

#17 Dec 10, 2010
Quote: "His rambling essay was filled with phantom opinions attributed to experts, disarticulated bits of information, and poorly explained “facts” derived from a cursory understanding of the ecology of coastal dunes and plovers in particular. We wish to clarify and explain the real situation involving the status of the plover. In doing so, we'll rely on scientific evidence collected and published in peer-reviewed scientific journals rather than presenting anecdotes derived from hearsay"

"Rambling," "phantom," "disarticulated," "cursory."
Are these scientific terms and observations? Mr Driscoll is an advocate for equestrian access to beaches, so what? Your unstated position appears to be that people ahould not even be on beaches in any way, and have chosen the pliover as the blunt instrument to advance your position. You are in sole possession of the facts, it seems Based upon your status as University professors, you are somehow better able to define what is "good" or "bad".

Only 19 adults in 2009. Decline attributed to ravens who are there to eat garbage. How much garbage is on the beach? Are predator proof trash receptacles available? Were they available in 2009?

And how critical to the survival of the Plover is Clam Beach? Seems that choosing to nest in tire tracks and next to dog parks is something that naturally would be selected against, perhaps for the improvement of the species in the long haul...

Since: Aug 08

Fieldbrook

#18 Dec 10, 2010
Observer wrote:
Quote: Only 19 adults in 2009. Decline attributed to ravens who are there to eat garbage. How much garbage is on the beach? Are predator proof trash receptacles available? Were they available in 2009?
And how critical to the survival of the Plover is Clam Beach? Seems that choosing to nest in tire tracks and next to dog parks is something that naturally would be selected against, perhaps for the improvement of the species in the long haul...
There are hundreds of miles of empty beach near here. To close the one beach left for driving seems overly righteous to me and I'm a greenie. I know biologists and they know that you can kill something with kindness. Crows and Ravens follow reseachers and others. Just leave the birds alone. Control your dog. 4x4's running over eggs is a myth. Reseachers attracting corvids is not.
Humkev

Eureka, CA

#19 Dec 10, 2010
uri wrote:
It is sad when so many words say so little. Unaddressed here are the concerns for the plover and the existing habitat. The activities that we entrusted the "experts" with have shown not only negetive results as far as numbers go it is also contributing to the significant disturbance and destruction of our dunes and wetlands. When is common sense going to say enough is enough.
If we could just go back to the time when we could use the beach and dunes freely, the dunes were more stable and the freshwater wetlands the foredunes protected were safe from encroching sand and saltwater, we could more frequently spot plovers and some chicks but they had the beach grass cover to dash into readily available. And we had all that money to spend on something more defendable and productive such as stream restoration.
Maybe you noticed that all the plover woes seem to all stem back to humans according to this essay. Maybe these experts just want our beaches all to themselves.
Typical small minded distrust of actual biological research. Before you criticize their work, you really should try doing it under the strict protocols that are required. There's more to it than riding past the scene making snarky comments.
Humkev

Eureka, CA

#20 Dec 10, 2010
Observer wrote:
Quote: "His rambling essay was filled with phantom opinions attributed to experts, disarticulated bits of information, and poorly explained “facts” derived from a cursory understanding of the ecology of coastal dunes and plovers in particular. We wish to clarify and explain the real situation involving the status of the plover. In doing so, we'll rely on scientific evidence collected and published in peer-reviewed scientific journals rather than presenting anecdotes derived from hearsay"
"Rambling," "phantom," "disarticulated," "cursory."
Are these scientific terms and observations? Mr Driscoll is an advocate for equestrian access to beaches, so what? Your unstated position appears to be that people ahould not even be on beaches in any way, and have chosen the pliover as the blunt instrument to advance your position. You are in sole possession of the facts, it seems Based upon your status as University professors, you are somehow better able to define what is "good" or "bad".
Only 19 adults in 2009. Decline attributed to ravens who are there to eat garbage. How much garbage is on the beach? Are predator proof trash receptacles available? Were they available in 2009?
And how critical to the survival of the Plover is Clam Beach? Seems that choosing to nest in tire tracks and next to dog parks is something that naturally would be selected against, perhaps for the improvement of the species in the long haul...
Wow, a Monster Truck/Pit Bull/Darwin mashup! You just never know what treasure you'll find here.
Plain Jane

United States

#21 Dec 10, 2010
-Police: Man dies after punch by Burger King worker
Friday, December 10, 2010

www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi...

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