Tuesday, November 30, 2010
This is part 3 in a series of my conversations with former Bodega resident Merritt Clifton. He’s now editor of ANIMAL PEOPLE magazine, and was surprised by the abundant wildlife photos featured thoughout BodegaBayLife.com. Here are his words:
"Your world is unimaginably different from that of the rural working poor community that I remember -- no one there then could ever have imagined it.
"But along with the affluence has come recovery of the local wildlife population, whose habitat was destroyed by logging, grazing, and hunting during the 20th century.
"Your site offers many wonderful photos of wildlife we never saw. Turkey vultures & sheep, yes. We had those. We sometimes saw deer, though they were mostly represented by heads on the walls of the Casino bar & grill in Bodega and The Tides, which was then the only restaurant in Bodega Bay. No one had seen a bobcat in 30 years.
"Our world would have been much richer with the wildlife. Instead, what I had was a 1900 edition of True Bear Stories, by Joaquin Miller, describing the wildlife that used to be there & was no more, even then.
"Looks as if you have the critters again, all except the extinct California golden bear. The last one, Monarch, was captured and ended his life in the original San Francisco Zoo, in Golden Gate Park, before the present zoo was built. Miller covered the capture as a newspaper correspondent, & included the story of the bear's subsequent life in his book."
This was all news to me and it makes me even more grateful for the abundant wildlife here on the coast today. And there's more good news--Merritt will dig this recent article in the Press Democrat,
Birds of Prey Thrive at Jenner Headlands.
Here are a couple of our more recent bobcat photos. Maybe we can get some raptor shots soon...