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Frog Release Into SEKI 8/30

Grab your bear can or camp chair, kick your feet up and chew the fat about anything Sierra Nevada related that doesn't quite fit in any of the other forums. Within reason, (and the HST rules and guidelines) this is also an anything goes forum. Tell stories, discuss wilderness issues, music, or whatever else the High Sierra stirs up in your mind.

Re: Frog Release Into SEKI 8/30

Postby gdurkee » Tue Oct 17, 2017 7:25 pm

Oh, sigh, I am too easily baited: hauled out of my bat cave to, once again, rise in defense of not only froggies, but NPS (who, really, I have no great love for but they do some things right). With respect (really) I resent your implication that "environmentalists" (always a bad sign when it's put in quotes) want humans to go away. I am one and have been an environmentalist since ca. 1965 when I first read Muir and Leopold. I know a zillion people and rangers who identify as environmentalists. Not a single one holds that attitude. Not one. So, it would be nice if you didn't start out with such unsupported and provocative hyperbole.

That said, the entire process for fish removal and frog restoration WAS public. An EIR was published, there were two rounds of public hearings (Bishop, Fresno, San Francisco, LA (?)) and two rounds of written comments. The results of each were published with time for comment by individuals and organizations. There have been volumes of peer review scientific papers on the subject. The "frog people" -- NPS and University researchers who stay on restoration sites all summer -- constantly talk to backpackers, explain what they're doing and why it's important. This has been going on for, literally, decades. As a fellow environmentalist, I strongly disagree that the restoration of a vital native species is somehow "a small ecological benefit."

In my previous post, I outlined some of the ecological benefits of the simple restoration of frogs to an ecosystem. Again and again I repeat: the odds of your favorite fishing hole in the Sierra being affected by this project is minuscule. Truly. I know -- and have been to -- every single lake that's having fish removed and almost none of them have good fishing. Again, sizes are usually well under 10”. There are and will always be lots and lots of high Sierra lakes to fish.
While it shouldn't make a difference (a legitimate use is a legitimate use) there are really darned few people who fish any more relative to the total number of backcountry users. Others here might have a better idea but, by 2010, I'd say fewer than 20% of the hikers even carried a fishing rod. Of those, less than 1% were serious about fishing. Of several of the excellent fishing lakes I know (Goldens ~=16”), most went from maybe 20 - 30 visits a year in the 70s to maybe one or two by 2010. The skilled fisher people are educated and vocal, but they're a tiny, tiny minority of backcountry users nowadays.

I have talked to, literally, tens of thousands of backcountry users and am always encouraged by their support of efforts to restore ecosystem to what they were pre-Euro-American settlement. Sure, there's exceptions but I can’t remember more than a handful who weren’t convinced of the righteousness of my brilliant and decisive logic in defense of the wild and restoring healthy ecosystems <insert dancing happy face>.

From many of the comments here, I am truly bummed and saddened by how far apart many of us are on this issue. You specifically reference "enjoy wild places" but seem to miss what makes these places wild. The Peregrine is one of the classic recovery stories. Why wouldn't anyone not voluntarily agree to avoid disturbing their nests at the request of biologists and NPS? A couple of months! Really? Is that really too much for the care of a species that we drove almost to extinction? What are our moral responsibilities to the earth and the ecosystems we are a part of?

What is our role as humans -- stewards of not only National Parks but our moral responsibility to all species? This is a non-trivial question and at the heart of this current brouhaha over frogs, peregrines and, not to get too dramatic, all creation. And this is to say nothing of the well-established legal responsibilities under the Organic Act, the Wilderness Act and the Endangered Species Act. Again, not trivial responsibilities to be dismissed as environmentalists wanting to keep people out of wilderness.

Oh my. A last sip of Vina Moda 2015 Vinas, and I retire from the field in sadness to mediate and pray for our collective redemption.



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Re: Frog Release Into SEKI 8/30

Postby rlown » Tue Oct 17, 2017 8:22 pm

George,

Please explain why the nets were in the water in 2007 prior to public scoping (2008) in Yose and the Environmental assessment in 2011..

https://www.nps.gov/yose/learn/nature/u ... Remova.pdf
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Re: Frog Release Into SEKI 8/30

Postby Snowtrout » Wed Oct 18, 2017 10:18 am

Trout and frogs have co-existed for 50-100 years throughout the Sierra due to planting (by citizens and the Govt). Frogs start disappearing and trout is blamed. Govt calls for eradication of trout to save frog. Gill netting and chemical treatment are used by the Govt to kill trout off to save frog. Science then shows that fungus is major cause but process to kill trout is already underway. List of eradicated lakes continues to grow every year. Will the eradicated lakes list ever stop........

Bass (striped, largemouth and smallmouth) and salmon have co-existed for 100 years in the Central CA rivers and delta. Salmon start disappearing and bass is blamed. Govt calls for eradication of bass to save salmon.............sound familiar.

To me, there has been a well orchestrated theme of "native only" by special interest groups running rampant throughout this state over the past 15-20 years and these ideas do not seem to be slowing down. Just looking forward to see what is next and what group of people will be affected by it :confused: .
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Re: Frog Release Into SEKI 8/30

Postby limpingcrab » Wed Oct 18, 2017 12:17 pm

With respect (really) I resent your implication that "environmentalists" (always a bad sign when it's put in quotes) want humans to go away. I am one and have been an environmentalist since ca. 1965 when I first read Muir and Leopold. I know a zillion people and rangers who identify as environmentalists. Not a single one holds that attitude. Not one. So, it would be nice if you didn't start out with such unsupported and provocative hyperbole.

When I use the quotes I am referring to the stereotypical emotional, ignorant of the facts, "environmentalist" so that was intentional. Don't worry, I consider myself an environmentalist as well. For example, an "environmentalist" from the Sierra Club mailed me a fundraising pamphlet asking for my money to stop companies from logging Giant Sequoias. As an environmentalist (no quotes) I know that nobody is logging Giant Sequoias and the factual issue was a permit for selective thinning in Giant Sequoia National Monument. You sound like the no quotes kind so I think we're on the same side and are just having a misunderstanding. For what it's worth, in grad school for field and wildlife biology I met quite a few people who think wilderness areas should be human free zones. They're not the outdoor lovers that you'd meet on the trail or working for the NPS, they're the desk dwellers of academia and politics.

As a fellow environmentalist, I strongly disagree that the restoration of a vital native species is somehow "a small ecological benefit."

My apologies, another misunderstanding. I am in favor of removing trout from certain basins. I meant that the benefit of removing trout from ALL basins would cause more backlash than it would be worth and would not be a well balanced decision.

The Peregrine is one of the classic recovery stories. Why wouldn't anyone not voluntarily agree to avoid disturbing their nests at the request of biologists and NPS? A couple of months! Really? Is that really too much for the care of a species that we drove almost to extinction? What are our moral responsibilities to the earth and the ecosystems we are a part of?

I was using the peregrines as an example where some places work WITH recreational users to only close what is necessary and foster a good relationship that benefits the birds and the people (Yosemite), while other places don't care and close entire areas which ends up breeding resentment, broken locks on gates, disturbing the birds and a poor relationship with recreational users (Chimey Rocks in Sequoia National Forest where I was a volunteer peregrine monitor).

Anyway, I think we're on the same page if we agree that there needs to be a balance so that everyone benefits, both humans that make the decisions and the wildlife that need protection.
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Re: Frog Release Into SEKI 8/30

Postby longri » Wed Oct 18, 2017 10:50 pm

gdurkee wrote:ribbet


I've had the opportunity to visit Australia where I encountered a species of frog that doesn't talk that. They don't have an Aussie accent either, really. No, what they sound like are sheep. I'm not sure the first time I heard them because it's quite possible that I had been mistaking them for unseen sheep in the distance. It was only after learning that such frogs existed that I matched sound to animal.

There's another one there that sounds kind of like a banjo string being plucked. It's called the Eastern Banjo Frog.

You can hear both of these frogs as well as a few others in this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sTB9P1h35QE

The frogs in the Sierra aren't as exotic but, like George, I love to walk along lake shores and see them jump in. I've spent whole days doing that. One time I was camping and it was snowing but the frogs in the nearby creek were having a huge, noisy party all night long.
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Re: Frog Release Into SEKI 8/30

Postby rlown » Thu Oct 19, 2017 3:26 am

Sounds of our beloved, protected frog: http://www.californiaherps.com/frogs/pa ... ounds.html
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Re: Frog Release Into SEKI 8/30

Postby Jimr » Thu Oct 19, 2017 7:57 am

Sounds of our beloved, protected frog around Russ' camp

In our thirst for freedom, we must be careful not to drink from the cup of bitterness and hatred

- Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
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Re: Frog Release Into SEKI 8/30

Postby rlown » Thu Oct 19, 2017 9:11 am

Jimr, I'm a bit disappointed in the creativity with a post about 4 mins of bacon sizzling. There are so many recipes out there which address the topic. :) The frog eggs recipe I found sounded interesting, but I'm sure it would be disappointing like bad shad roe.

A red legged frog can lay about 5,000 eggs a year; A bullfrog about 20,000. That implies that the YLF probably needs time in the lakes to make harvest even worth it.

Besides, it won't be bacon fat in the recipe; either olive oil or butter.. They don't mask the taste of the main star of the dish.

Please remember "they" taught us how to dissect frogs in high school..
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Re: Frog Release Into SEKI 8/30

Postby Jimr » Thu Oct 19, 2017 10:29 am

rlown wrote:Please remember "they" taught us how to dissect frogs in high school..


I was out sick that day. :derp:
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Re: Frog Release Into SEKI 8/30

Postby rlown » Thu Oct 19, 2017 2:30 pm

bring me a frog.. I'll teach you.. :) I've since moved on to larger anatomy studies... Last one was a bear on a 40 degree slope; funny how some just can't identify the internals of an animal. We're all pretty much the same. Lots of rope involved to stabilize the patient and 2-2" knives. I did have to point out the gall bladder of a bear to the guy I was teaching how to dress it out. I stated, that is worth 400 buxx on the black market as I threw it against the tree. Totally illegal, but I like to send those little messages..
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