Tag Archives: wildlife

Invisible Nests – Tree Work Should Avoid the Nesting Season

This article is reposted with permission from CoyoteYipps, a blog about San Francisco’s urban coyotes. We republish it here as an interesting story – and a lesson in how difficult it is to see a bird’s nest even if you … Continue reading

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Managing Urban Coyotes: by Janet Kessler

A few months ago, coyotes were sighted in and around Sutro Forest. In fact, all urban parks – and some neighborhoods – in San Francisco have families of coyotes visiting or living in them. For those who love wildlife, this … Continue reading

Posted in Environment, Mt Sutro Cloud Forest | Tagged , | 1 Comment

Walking in Sutro Forest – June, July 2014

It’s a while since we posted about Sutro Forest conditions, so we’d like to record pictures and observations from the last few weeks. Much of the forest is still very beautiful, especially in the fog. But around 1200 trees have … Continue reading

Posted in Environment, eucalyptus, Hiking, Mt Sutro Cloud Forest | Tagged , , , , , | 8 Comments

Felling Orange-dot Trees in the Nesting Season

In March 2014, soon after UCSF said it was delaying work on the Draft Environmental Impact Report for now – it sent around this message. “Beginning on Monday, March 17th, Bartlett Tree Experts will be performing tree work throughout the … Continue reading

Posted in Environment, Mt Sutro Cloud Forest, UCSF | Tagged , , , , | 4 Comments

Good News: Rat Poisons To Be Restricted in California

This article is republished from San Francisco Forest Alliance’s website, with permission. Sutro Forest is home to owls and hawks, coyotes, and other predators. It’s also surrounded by neighborhoods, and people may not realize that dealing with their rodent problem … Continue reading

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February Idyll in Mount Sutro Forest: Bikes, Flowers, Slug

The welcome little storm that passed through a few days ago watered the forest, but it wasn’t actually raining on February 13th. So when someone emailed us to say they wanted to see the forest – for the first time … Continue reading

Posted in Environment, Hiking, Mt Sutro Cloud Forest | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments

The Plants that Monarch Butterflies Need

The famed and eponymous natural bridges at Natural Bridges State Beach at Santa Cruz no longer exist; a 1994 winter storm destroyed the last one. But no matter: what we recently went there to see was the over-wintering Monarch butterflies … Continue reading

Posted in Environment, eucalyptus | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

“Invasive” Plants can Save Native Wildlife

We recently came upon this article by author Toby Hemenway, on his blog Pattern Literacy.  Written from the point of view of a permaculturist, it responds to nativist objections that the permaculture community plants non-native or even “invasive” species. Since … Continue reading

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Progress! UCSF’s Changed Plans for Mt Sutro Forest (Meeting Report)

Thank you, everyone who came for the UCSF Mt Sutro Forest meeting on 21 November 2013. It was a significant one. UCSF indicated a changed direction from its earlier plan. Key changes: Restricted objective: Safety. The main objective will be … Continue reading

Posted in Mt Sutro Cloud Forest, Sutro Forest "Fire Risk" | Tagged , , , | 11 Comments

Mt Sutro Cloud Forest Evening: Puddles, Not Fire

The fog blowing in last evening softened all the colors to gray. It was growing late, too late for the forest. We went anyway. These are some of the most beautiful times in the Cloud Forest, and we’d been away … Continue reading

Posted in Environment, Sutro Forest "Fire Risk" | Tagged , , , , | 3 Comments

How Many Butterflies? San Francisco Butterfly Count, 2013

Each year, in June or July, a group of volunteers goes out and counts butterflies. This year’s butterfly count in San Francisco was on June 8th, and yielded 751 individual butterflies, of which 703 were identified by species. (The spotters … Continue reading

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Flaws in UCSF’s Sutro DEIR: Public Comments Due 19th March 2013

This post is about flaws in UCSF’s Draft Environmental Impact Report (DEIR) for Mount Sutro Open Space Reserve. It isn’t comprehensive, but hits some of the high points. Here is the PDF of the DEIR: Mount_Sutro_EIR_1-16-13_with_Appendices MISLEADING PICTURES The DEIR … Continue reading

Posted in Environment, Mt Sutro Cloud Forest, UCSF | Tagged , , , , , , | 12 Comments

Mission Blue Butterfly – Uncertainty Saga

Regular readers of this website know that we’ve been following the Natural Areas Programs attempts to reintroduce the Mission Blue Butterfly to Twin Peaks. We’ve just obtained the latest report from San Francisco Recreation and Parks Dept (SFRPD). It’s very … Continue reading

Posted in Herbicides, Natural areas Program | Tagged , , , , | 4 Comments

Rat Poison Killed Glen Canyon’s Owl

This article has been republished from ForestKnolls.info as a caution to everyone interested in protecting our owls. They live in Sutro Forest, too. We hope and believe that UCSF does not use rodenticides in the Aldea Student Housing, but we … Continue reading

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Fact Check: Nothing Grows UnderEucalyptus? (Allelopathy)

Like most people in the US, we’ve been listening to some of the political speeches and the discussion around them recently. And we’re rather heartened by a newly emerging trend: fact-checking. In the last few months, one “fact” we’ve heard … Continue reading

Posted in Environment, eucalyptus, Mt Sutro Cloud Forest, nativism | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

A Bobcat in Sutro Forest?

“We saw a bobcat today in Mt. Sutro by the Aldea Center,” commented reader RM on  MntSutro.com on 10 May 2012. We were fascinated. [Edited to replace the public domain picture with one the reader sent us – taken in … Continue reading

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San Francisco’s Natural Areas Program Ignores Breeding Birds

We’d written earlier about chainsaws in Glen Canyon Park, even though spring is the breeding season for birds and animals, a time when trees and thickets should be left undisturbed. [Click HERE to read that article, Chainsaws in the Nesting … Continue reading

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Glen Canyon Park: Chainsaws in the Nesting Season

The nesting season for birds is in full swing. San Francisco’s mild winter and recent rains have provided a window for building and breeding, and they’ve grabbed it. The birding reports are full of lovely stories, from humming-birds to Great … Continue reading

Posted in Environment, nativism, Natural areas Program | Tagged , , , , | 5 Comments

The San Francisco Forest Alliance

We’ve been critical of the so-called “Natural” areas program (or officially, the Significant Natural Resource Areas Plan) that covers some 1100 acres across 32 separate parks in San Francisco.  While the idea of a Natural Area is appealing (as it … Continue reading

Posted in Environment, eucalyptus, Herbicides, Herbicides: Roundup, Garlon, nativism, Natural areas Program | Tagged , , , , , , , ,

The Summer Tanager and San Francisco’s Non-Native Plants

One of the more interesting groups to watch, if you like birds, is the Yahoo group SF Birds. (Anyone can read it, but you must join to post in it. [ETA: It’s apparently been changed to a members-only group; only … Continue reading

Posted in Environment | Tagged , , , | 4 Comments

Natural Areas Program’s Pesticides: Toxic and Toxic-er

It’s no surprise that people are beginning to associate San Francisco’s Natural Areas Program with pesticides. It’s been using them (if the city’s records are accurate) at an increasing rate. In 2009, it applied Garlon 16 times; in 2010, it … Continue reading

Posted in Environment, Herbicides, Herbicides: Roundup, Garlon, Mount Sutro Stewards, nativism, Natural areas Program | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 18 Comments

Why San Francisco’s Natural Areas Are — Unnatural

WHEN I first heard about San Francisco’s Natural Areas Program (SF NAP) some years ago, I was charmed. Over 1000 acres of city-owned land would be left to Nature, more wild and free than the orderly, gardened lawns and playgrounds … Continue reading

Posted in Environment, Natural areas Program | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Bird-safe Buildings for San Francisco

Bird-killers. More dangerous than wind-farms, more insidious than cats… it’s windows. (The glass ones, not the thing produced by Microsoft.) Birds can’t see normal glass, and crash into it. Either they die, or they become easy prey. San Francisco, like … Continue reading

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San Francisco Butterfly Count Results, July 2011

The San Francisco butterfly count, led by Liam O’ Brien and sponsored by the North American Butterfly Association, has announced its results. This year, it was held on July 3 on a bright sunny day, compared with last year’s June … Continue reading

Posted in Environment | Tagged , | 7 Comments

Interwoven and Integrated: Non-native and Native Species in Life’s Web

Lock and key. Co-evolution. “Made for each other.” One of the dogmas offered by nativists is that native plants and animals, evolving together for thousands of years, form a closed interdependent ecology. According to the California Native Plant Society’s website: Native … Continue reading

Posted in Environment, nativism | Tagged , , | 9 Comments

Mount Sutro Forest as Habitat: Janet Kessler in ‘Way Out West’

We’ve often written about the importance of Mount Sutro Forest as habitat. (For instance: here.) Everywhere in our city, eucalyptus provides nesting and perching sites for many different birds, as does acacia which grows as a sub-canopy in many parts … Continue reading

Posted in Environment, nativism | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Habitat Destruction with Sutro Stewards

Around this time last year, Sutro Forest was alive with birdsong all day from dawn to late dusk. “We walked up into the Sutro Forest on a peaceful bird-filled evening,” we wrote  in late February 2010. “A few outside noises … Continue reading

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Mount Sutro Forest Ecosystem and Wildlife Habitat

We’ve talked earlier about how Sutro Forest works as a Cloud Forest, and why it’s always damp. Today, it’s Sutro Forest as an ecosystem and a habitat.  UCSF recently had a scoping meeting for its Environmental Impact Review for their … Continue reading

Posted in Environment, eucalyptus, Mount Sutro Stewards, UCSF | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 19 Comments

Bees and Blue Gum Eucalyptus and Herbicides

We saw this interesting letter to the Editor in the Pulitzer Prize winning Pt Reyes Light newspaper. It’s reproduced here with permission from the edition of 6 Jan 2011. It makes reference to the two-part article Myth of the Eucalyptus … Continue reading

Posted in eucalyptus, Herbicides, Herbicides: Roundup, Garlon | Tagged , , | 4 Comments

Ravens vs Great Horned Owls by Patricia Greene

We’re always interested in our forest’s most spectacular residents: The Great Horned Owls. Today we saw this fascinating account from Patricia Greene on a birding group, and are re-printing it below with permission. I and others have been hearing Great … Continue reading

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