Dear Barbara, You won’t believe what critters captured my attention while I was watching so many fish flitting around underneath the Riverside Ave. bridge. Crabs! Lots of them! Scurrying around on the rocks.

SLR very own crab
SLR very own crab

You might wonder why I am so thrilled by their sight. It’s been a long time since I have seen crabs this far upstream in the San Lorenzo River. For that matter, they have been absent for ages at the river mouth as well, consequently their busy rock frolicking made me cheer for the river wildlife. Are you good with fish identification? The reason I ask is that a large amount of fish are gliding in and out the river reeds & rocks. Realizing many times I have no clue who I am looking at, the time has come to replace my fish ignorance with knowledge. This might sound easy, yet I am driving myself crazy trying to take their photos so I can get ID help. The pics turn out pitifullly bad and are equaled with my failing verbal  description attempts, leaving me fish ignorant. Being familiar with the long, bumpy road of slow wildlife learning, this snail pace doesn’t surprise me. Here is an other question for you: Do you know why CROWS accept the PEREGRINE FALCON’s presence near them without going into their hysteric high agitated chase behavior? The CROWS intolernace for any close by HAWK species is famous and yet the CROWS sit calmly while the PEREFRINE FALON perches above them. Nor are CROWS bothered by the OSPRAY, which I understand : the OSPRAY hunts over the water, posing no threat to CROWS. That doesn’t apply to the PEREGRINE FALCON prey pursuit over land & water, so what is up with the varied CROWS behavior? During my river levee walks stimulating questions tickle my nature curiousity.This child like discovery adventure leads to the endless “Why…?” flutter in my head. Over time my observations made me respect & appreciate the never ending balancing acts of the wildlife web. I marvel about: “Why are there less MALLARD families between Soquel and Trestle bridge compared to last year?” and “Why are the 2 Merganser families glued to the lower Lagoon shore & not foraging in the river like last year?”  Does that happen to you as well? How do you quech your answer thirst?

Our flood control work discovery on Friday was a stab into our San Lorenzo River habitat heart, wasn’t it? Every year it’s sad to see the bushes, trees & grasses getting ripped out, knowing they provide homes, protection & food for the animals. We had just shared the thrill of 2 different people seeing a WEASEL down by the river and then your current PIED-BILLED GREBE nest discovery. Now we find ourselves worrying about their safety. There was a time when the urban arborist walked the flood control stretch, marked the to be removed bushes & trees with ribbons, which achieved a less radical vegetation eradication result. I wish they would considered trimming the bushes & trees branches towards the levee bank side thus allowing visibility from the levee path and leaving the foliage towards the river! This would leave more critter homes, shelter and food sources in tact. …before I forget: you mentioned something about big levee trees and the Corps of Engineers…could you run that by me again?

Big Trees Sculpture on SLR Levee
Big Trees Sculpture on SLR Levee

Here are 2 events, which I want to point out:                                                                                            LISA SHERIDAN’S A fine Feathered Feast flier  tells you about a great chance for San Lorenzo River supporters to mingle & schmooze. Bernadette & Bob Ramer-Local Birding Experts- Shorebird Walk will be a treat for all of us, who need some Shorebird ID help. Be sure to click on links for more inf. Well & now I am off to join the Leveelies                                                                                                          question tickle greetings                                                                                                                                   jane

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