Here Is A Partial List of Things That Don't Belong In Liscom Slough That One Mild-Mannered Guy Removed
Today on KHUM's Coastal Currents, Jessica Hall of Humboldt Baykeeper introduces you to a regular guy whose moral compass points to Arcata's lowlands.
It also led him to smash up three abandoned cars with a sledgehammer. "But that's nothing compared to player pianos and walk-in safes and the other stuff," he told KHUM today.
Of that list above, Fish and Game (now Fish and Wildlife) made only one arrest, said Halstead. (He explains at 8:19 below.)
Hear today's Coastal Currents:
For almost two decades, Ted Halstead has been removing garbage from the slough on the north side of Arcata bay. A lot of garbage. And with today's King Tide (read: extra high tide, see photo below), a lot of that would've been swept out into the bay.
Halstead's impact extends well beyond general decency. "I don't think people realize how incredibly abundant these sloughs really are, and how critical they are to the fisheries industry here," said Hall.
"If you're a fan of salmon, halibut, the herring, the sardines, the baitfish, [a clean slough] is critical to being able to have those things," added Halstead.
He noted that at the peak of juvenile dungeness crab season, he observed about 1,500 crabs per hour making their way out to the bay.
Arcatans are estimated to use about four million single-use plastic bags annually. After last night, that number should drop dramatically.
In a 5-0 decision, the city council decided to adopt a bag ordinance that prohibits those plastic carryout bags found at grocery stores and restaurants.
"We're really happy that Humboldt Waste Management did our EIR (enviromental impact report) and made it available for everyone in the county to use," said Alex Stillman, Arcata City Councilmember. "And we're looking forward to adopting it, and also the county considering adopting it so that we can, as a coastal city and coastal county, eliminate plastic bags from our environment."
Arcata's bag ban goes into effect in February 2014, Stillman said. Starting in August, the city will mandate a ten-cent charge on paper bags.
Plastic bags don't biodegrade. Instead, they get shredded into smaller and smaller pieces until they work their way into the food chain. "There are places in the ocean where you find more particles of plastic than plankton," said Humboldt Baykeeper's Jessica Hall. "This is the single most popular issue when we post this on our Facebook page," she said. "This is the thing people have really, really responded too."
Though Stillman said she'd been eyeing a bag ordinance for Arcata since her reelection in 2006, Hall notes that this is the first plastic bag ban in Humboldt county. In addition to the city staff, Hall added that "Humboldt Waste Management Authority also gets a big high five for putting this on the table in the first place and I'd also like to thank our partners in the environmental community and the community members themselves."
Now's as good a time as ever to enjoy Australian comedian Tim Minchin's epic anthem.
The rugged Lost Coast and King Range are Humboldt's backyard playground. From hiking the famed Lost Coast Trail to mountain biking in the King Range, proposed new rules might complicate your weekend jaunt.
From the Bureau of Land Management's plan:
The Wilderness Permit Program would, for the first time, limit overnight use in the King Range Wilderness and Backcountry through an allocation system administered through the National Reservation Service at Recreation.gov.
On the upside, limiting the number of hikers/hunters/surfers in the area will reduce reported impacts such as litter, human waste, and generally preserve the ruggedness that makes the King Range so attractive in the first place.
On the downside, to the local users who are used to regularly dropping in when weather and ocean conditions permit, the proposed fees and limitations introduce a new level of red tape, if not total prohibition of entry.
For instance, if they allow 60 "starts" to enter the wilderness per day and you show up as #61, you could be disallowed entry.
Wes Smith of Surfrider Humboldt spoke on Coastal Currents today to give his view.
Further reading: Lost Coast Outpost.
Mike Dronkers / Tuesday, Oct. 8 @ 5:02 p.m. / Ocean
You'd think being bitten by a shark is a valid reason to stay home from work for at least a week. Or not. According to a press release from College of the Redwoods:
CR English instructor back teaching two days after shark attack
A great white shark bite to his left thigh didn’t stop Jay Scrivner from teaching his English writing class at College of the Redwoods on Tuesday morning, only 48 hours after the attack occurred.
“I teach a basic skills English writing class and I didn’t want the students to get behind,” said CR English instructor Jay Scrivner while standing outside his classroom with the aid of crutches. “I want to set a good example for my students. They all have crazy stuff and challenges with which they deal. I really like what I’m teaching now.”
Scrivner was surfing on a perfect Sunday morning about 8 a.m. near the North Jetty on the Samoa Peninsula when a great white shark suddenly appeared and bit his left thigh. A surfing friend of Scrivner’s saw the attack, swam over to him and encouraged him to paddle to shore. Blood was squirting from his leg, but after making sure he was in one piece, he made it to land.
Others on the beach applied pressure to the wounds to limit the bleeding and tied up his leg with a T-shirt. An ambulance brought him to St. Joseph’s Hospital where he had surgery to repair his wounds that required 30 stitches.
“I was lucky that no arteries or tendons were severed,” Scrivner said Tuesday. “After 24 hours laying around the hospital, I wanted to start moving around. The doctor said it would be good for my leg to walk on it and I came here to teach today.”
Scrivner has taught at CR for several years over the past decade. He has also taught at the Northcoast Preparatory Academy in Arcata. He is married and has two young children.
Scrivner said he definitely plans on surfing again once he heals. However, he has had several dreams the last few days about getting bit by a shark.
“I have surfed a lot by myself,” he said, “but after this I probably won’t surf alone again. One thing I remember about that shark is how healthy it looked. The skin around its mouth was so white and smooth and its eyes were beautiful orbs of dark color.”
The Humboldt Surfrider organization will be holding its Ocean Night at Arcata Theater Lounge on Friday, Oct. 11 and the proceeds from it will help pay for Scrivner’s medical expenses. Donations to Scrivner and his family can also be made via the Humboldt Surfrider PayPal account at firstname.lastname@example.org
For Ocean Night, the doors at 6:30 p.m., with the night’s film. “Surfing and Sharks,” beginning at 7 p.m. That film was coincidentally scheduled in advance of this latest North Coast shark incident.
UPDATE 12:15PM Thursday: Still there. Slurping mud.
We're told there's a California gray whale hanging out near Houda point.
Despite it occasionally rolling near the surf, HSU Zoology professor Dawn Goley said there isn't any immediately apparent cause for concern. She spoke with your Lost Coast Outpost reporter and Humboldt Baykeeper's Jessica Hall earlier today.
"It's out there in that sandy area south of Camel Rock and I think it's doing well.
We checked to see if there was any sign of entanglement, and from what we could see with scopes, we can't really see any evidence that it's trailing fishing gear or things like that.
We look for signs of what we consider normal behavior, and today we were able to watch it surface normally, roll on its side, which is normal behavior if they're feeding, and then we saw evidence of feeding because as it resurfaced you'd see mud plumes that were left behind. Gray whales feed on these invertebrates that are embedded in the mud. They feed by taking big mouthfuls of that mud and then squishing out the mud and the water, so if you see these mud plumes around whales you're pretty sure those guys are feeding."
Goley already took some HSU students out to view it this morning, some of whom thrilled to their first whale sighting.
If you go see it, landlocked whale watching doesn't get much more convenient. Take the Westhaven exit off Northbound 101, go under the underpass, and turn right. Pull over near the overlook or in the Houda Point parking lot. People live in Westhaven and the roads are tight, so be cool if you check it out. Bring binoculars. The whale has been there for about 24 hours already.
Thanks to KHUM caller "Ronnie" for tipping us off.