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Andy Keyes's picture
Joined: 08/22/2007
Posts: 289
Water and Burn Wisely

The winter rains are finally here again and the natural cleaning of the air has resumed. After several weeks of air quality that made it improper to have a fire in the fireplace, it is great to be able to enjoy a nice warm fire and still enjoy air quality, that is relatively clean. Its also good to see the natural cycle of rain begin to resume its normal accumulation now in the northern part of the state.   A few things to remember if you havent already done so, check all of your gutter downspouts and keep them clear  ( I had to clear my own on Sunday in the rain), and turn off your sprinklers completely during the next few weeks. Again its nice to see that the rain again fall from the sky as it does every year but this year its near normal. It will be good to see our reservoirs at or above capacity this spring as they were last spring as well. 

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Bill Clark's picture
Joined: 08/07/2007
Posts: 194
Watering

Some good information Andy.  Even today I'm seeing yards on my street with the irrigation systems going full throttle.  These will end up being the same rate payers complaining about their bill being so high.  Time to back off the watering.

Larry Monson's picture
Joined: 02/04/2010
Posts: 17
Water and Salmon

The name of our river from which we draw our water was named after the local Native American population; "People of the Salmon".  It seems almost ironic that very few of these namesake fish still migrate up the river.  One of the reasons is that the fall rains do not re-wet the entire river until almost to late for the salmon.  The reason it does not re-wet sooner is that the ground water from just below Sloughhouse to just outside of Galt has dropped alomost 60 feet.  The Fall rains must refresh the ground water prior to flowing down the valley.  Every drop of water we don't pump out into our lakes in the winter helps to refresth the ground water and therefore re-wets the river for the salmon. 

This may seem small reason to watch our water consumption but as an avid sportsman and conservationist it is important to get the word out.

Rancho Murieta Conservationist

Andy Keyes's picture
Joined: 08/22/2007
Posts: 289
Good Translation

Thats a new one Larry.  Thanks for the edification.  Its important also as we go through this year to explore water conservation during the dry months.  Last year I aerated for the first time in 5 years.  Last year I didnt change my sprinkler to the normal (triple) water output for the summer.  Imagine that. 1/3 the water usage for a simple 40 dollar aeration.  This year I plan on doing it again with deeper tines to get the water deeper into the yard as well as reducing the square footage of lawn in both front and back yards.  I also noticed with the addition of the signs at the gates that we have used half as much wood as last year.  On another conservation note, how do you feel about the Mute swans?  They are non native to North America and wreak havoc with local ecosystems and wildlife. 

Larry Monson's picture
Joined: 02/04/2010
Posts: 17
Non-native mute swans







Of fairy tales and pictures of elegance the Mute Swan strikes an elegant pose upon Clementia regularly.  This species is also tied into much controversy.  There are two camps: one who say them must be eradicated as a invasive species from Eurasia that damages aquatic plant life, the other animal rights groups that want to protect them.  Both camps have their reasons, from being big and aggressive and voracious eaters, or beautiful and graceful members of the new ecosystem.  The National Audubon Society has stated that “We don’t think “they” are healthy for the native birds.” 

So to answer your question, what is the alternative?  Shall we kill the swans?  If we start that we need to kill all the other non-native species in the Rancho Murieta.  Among the most notable non-native species are dogs, cats, and people.  Over sixty percent of the fish species in the Cosumnes river are also non-native.

 

Andy Keyes's picture
Joined: 08/22/2007
Posts: 289
Just replace them

The program practiced in the midwest was to locate the nests, remove the eggs of the Mute Swans and replace them with Trumpeter Swan eggs.  Yes this means destroying the eggs of the mutes in the process but when the eggs hatch the mutes will raise the trumpeter swans as their own.  Eventually the Mutes are replaced with native trumpeters.  This does take time but in the end the Mutes are simply replaced in the ecosystem.  As for non native cats I say trap them and euthenize.  They do considerable damage and spread disease.  As for people Larry , come on!

Candy Chand's picture
Joined: 08/15/2007
Posts: 304
cats?

Mr. Keyes,

Should I assume your remark about killing your neighbor's pets was an attempt at humor?

Candy Chand

Andy Keyes's picture
Joined: 08/22/2007
Posts: 289
Strays

Candy,

Not at all.  Housecats shouldnt be running free destroying all the native songbirds.  What I have seen more often than not up here on the hill are several breeding strays who roam the yards and potentially spread disease and destruction in their path.  I admit one of my cats does get out on occaision but being declawed she returns usually in an hour or so after exploring underneath my deck.  A neighbor of mine had quite a bit of damage from a brood of strays who clawed the crawlspace vent loose and then most of the insulation from underneath the kitchen.  Again no I don't subscribe to chasing the cats down for the slaughter but they are out of control in many areas. 

 

 

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