Our days in the Illilouette Creek Basin began in early twilight, crawling out of a sleeping bag to start bird surveys. Mornings involved 3 to 4 miles of route-finding off trail through a gauntlet of fallen logs, thorny shrubs, steep slopes, and the otherwise unpredictable.
It was July 28, 2021, I was sitting in my living room overlooking Lake Almanor in the Northern Sierra Nevada, having spent the morning raking fir needles and covering attic vents, I was hunched over the air purifier sucking in as much fresh air as I could get. It was 3 weeks into the Dixie Fire, and the sky, much like what the San Francisco Bay Area experienced in the fall of 2020, had looked an eerie orange for weeks from wildfire smoke with little relief. I was alone, having sent my family out of harm’s way the week before.
We’re pleased to announce Point Blue’s first ever Fire Stewardship Ecologist position which has been filled (and co-created to a large extent) by former Sonoma-Marin Partner Biologist Taj Hittenberger. This is an exciting step for both Taj and Point Blue in the direction of further incorporating fire into our conservation efforts.
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