by Nicole Na
Thanksgiving is a time of plenty, a time where we join our families and friends around the dinner table replete with a traditional feast — mashed potatoes, green beans, stuffing, and, of course, the turkey. Despite its venerated place as the centerpiece of many Thanksgiving feasts, the life-story of this noble bird isn’t exactly common knowledge — which is why, this week, we celebrate this fowl by giving a brief history of its species.
by Julian Meisler
Changing scenery and new visitors at Sears Point
Some 1,000 people visited Sears Point on October 25 to watch the tides return to the baylands, diked off and separated from the bay more than a century ago. It was a wonderful day of celebration that we called “Sea Change.”
Indeed, change will be the theme at Sears Point in the years and decades to come. Today, it is a 960-acre saltwater lake overlying land that dropped six feet during its twelve decades of isolation. As time passes, we will watch and measure ongoing change as the tides deposit sediment year after year with every cycle of the tides until, one day, the elevation of the site will be high enough to grow a marsh throughout. We expect that to take 15–30 years depending on the amount of sediment available and the pace of sea level rise.
by Bob Neale
Lucky to be where I am
I have the best job in the world, though sometimes I take it for granted. I’ve found that the best time to renew my appreciation for my job is when I find some critical field work to accomplish, some task that requires a long contemplative walk across the landscape. There is something about paying attention to the land that reduces my blood pressure and takes the strain off my shoulders.
Often, what I am looking at is simple: Is the fence in good shape? How are the oak trees that the kids planted last year faring? Other times, I find myself standing on a ridge-top looking across the landscape, breathing the crisp fall air, watching the low angle light slice through the clouds and cast color across the field, thinking about how it all fits together. At times like that, I think how lucky I am to be able to view it. It makes me feel like I’m the first one to see this, to experience this wonder and joy.
But I’m not. In the moment, it can be easy to forget that people have been living in Sonoma County for thousands of years. Wherever you go, a Pomo, Miwok or Wappo person once stood and contemplated the same landscape. There isn’t a creek or coastal bluff that hasn’t been home to countless generations before us, or a grassland, oak woodland or redwood forest that hasn’t been hunted. Our Sonoma County landscapes have been, and still are, sacred places for many.
Sonoma Land Trust is a local nonprofit based in Santa Rosa, CA, that conserves scenic, natural, agricultural and open lands in Sonoma County for the benefit of the community and future generations. This blog focuses on SLT's stewardship team, whose members do hands-on work to directly protect, restore, and safeguard the land for generations to come.