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Native Californian, biologist, wildlife conservation consultant, retired Smithsonian scientist, father of two daughters, grandfather of four. INTJ. Believes nature is infinitely more interesting than shopping malls. Born 100 years too late.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

A couple new sets

Set 294, an arroyo in Carrizo Canyon, San Luis Obispo County

Chimineas Ranch, San Luis Obispo County

Checking and re-setting cameras took a full day.

The next day, August 19, we plied the back country roads by pickup to find areas for new sets. 

The arroyo (set 294) was bordered by a dense thicket on one side and a cliff on the other. 

A deep channel upstream dumps seasonal precipitation into the creek from time to time, but it may also serve as a travel route for wildlife.

This is a project of California Department of Fish & Game, and the department was the beneficiary of a large supply of canned mackerel that was contaminated with sand and deemed unsuitable for human consumption. 

The Department is making good use of the mackerel as bait to trap problem bears for relocation and also gave us a supply for our camera trapping survey at Chimineas. 

We punctured a can for this set and wired it to a limb over the arroyo, and we also used apple and almond scent lures. 

The set below is another shallow sandstone cave.

Fred took shelter there; the heat was really getting to the poor guy. 

When we got back to the car I had to restrain him from running up the hill to the cave again.

This cave was on a bluff near the top of a steep sandhill, and off the main chamber were a couple of narrow offshoots.

Okay, it doesn't look promising compared to the other cave and rock recess, but maybe something visits the place now and then for the view if offers of the countryside. 

We left a little castoreum there as a scent lure.

Maybe we'll get some surprises on the next go around.  

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