Monday-Friday
6A        Morning Edition
9A        Music
3P        Fresh Air
4P        All Things Considered
6:30P  The Daily

7P        Eclectic After Dark
banner101 3

photo credit: 
A plan to aid endangered seabirds roosting on the Farallon Islands by banishing mice has environmentalists crying foul.
 
20 miles southwest of Point Reyes, the Farallons are part of a National Wildlife Refuge. The new plan, which would scatter poisoned pellets on the island, is the latest bid to rid the small archipelago of invasive species. The US Fish & Wildlife Service successfully eliminated other animals that were threatening endangered species in years past.
  
Richard Charter, with the Ocean Foundation, said he deeply opposes the plan.
  
"Rabbits and cats, you can trap them, shoot them, poison them and there aren't as many of them and it doesn't require blanketing the whole island with poisonous from helicopters, capable of killing every mouse, and everything else, not just on the island but it gets transferred to other parts of the ecosystem on land."
  
Charter's concern is that burrowing owls that swoop in from Marin for a furry feast and gulls roosting on the islands will be inadvertently poisoned in the process. He predicts that despite efforts, some mice will survive, and their population will soar once again.
  
According to federal Fish and Wildlife officials though, precautions are part of the plan. Officials intend to scare off gulls and potentially capture and relocate burrowing owls before scattering poisoned bait.
  
While a similar proposal was withdrawn in 2019, this one seems nearing approval.
  
"We're at kind of the final juncture of this decision right now. They've been through a process where they've eliminated all other options except for the worst poison that they could possibly pick," Charter said.
  
After winning an OK from Fish and Wildlife, the plan is set to go before the California Coastal Commission, which is accepting written comments ahead of a December 16th meeting. The commission's staff is recommending approval of the poisoning plan.
  • SoCo Calendar
  • Latest News
  • Right Now
  • Weather
  • Earthquakes
  • First News
 
 
Read More
 
thumbnail FirstNews logoA weekday early morning podcast that offers a first look at the top local news stories and weather forecast you need to start your day.

Sonoma County news stories featuring the latest in breaking news, county government, elections, environment, cultural happenings, and updates on your communities, from Petaluma to Cloverdale, and from Sonoma to Bodega Bay, and everyplace in between.

Subscribe to the Sonoma County First News podcast through our website, the NorCal Mobile App, NPR Podcasts, NPR One, iTunes/Apple Podcasts, or wherever you get your podcasts. 

 
Read More

Northern California
Public Media Newsletter

Get the latest updates on programs and events.