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Just passing through

Heerman's gull. Dick Daniels / Wikimedia
 Fall migration is happening now. The season of endless possibilities, you know something good is going to show up, you just don’t know what yet and how many.

Fall migration starts at different periods for different types of birds. For some arctic breeding shorebirds it already started in late June, when the adults started to come through heading south, then in late July the juveniles appeared, and they are still moving through, although the majority is gone. There are a few late species such as the pectoral sandpiper, that come through mainly in late September and October, and some lost migrants might still show up.

Despite excellent conditions at Lake Earl and Tolowa, low water levels and a lot of exposed mud flats, not very many rarities were seen. The most notable one was a juvenile ruff, an Asian shorebird that seems to get lost quite often, as they are quite a regular rarity in California.

Church Notebook: Stuff a shoebox this Christmas season

Are you one of us who love to pack those shoeboxes for Operation Christmas Child each fall?

If you are and haven’t started yet this year, it’s definitely time to get busy.

Several of our churches are participating, and those I know of so far are Pelican Bay EV Free, New Life Community, Crescent City Church of the Nazarene and Hiouchi Community. If I’ve left you out, please let me know.

Dog day afternoon

 Roughly 36 dogs competed in Saturday’s 18th Annual Coastal Canine Olympics sponsored by the Humane Society. Petunia, above, a rescue from Animal Control, is pictured here with her owners and medals for the Meatball Run and Doggy Dash. 

Book: The straight poop on redwood wildlife

Who Pooped in the Redwoods? by Gary D. Robson teaches kids that even though they may not see the critters who call the redwoods home, they can still spot the clues that they leave behind.
 Gary Robson didn’t set out to become an expert on poop.

Robson, who has a background in computer science and micro-electronics, was on his ranch with his kids in Red Lodge, Montana, trying to figure out what got in the hay. 

“The kids asked what got into the hay, was the horses? Was it the cows?” he said. “I said look here, that’s not horse poop and that’s not cow poop... it must have been a deer. The kids said ‘wow, that’s what you ought to write your next book about.’”

Birth: Samuel Parker Trigg

 Samuel Parker Trigg was born on Sept. 16, 2015, at Sutter Coast Hospital in Crescent City. He weighed 8 pounds 11 ounces and measured 21 inches. Samuel’s parents are Dale and Joanna Trigg of Crescent City. His sisters are 3-year-old Elizabeth Marie Trigg and 18-month-old Catherine Anne Trigg. Samuel’s grandparents are Richard and Helen Trigg, of Kimberling City, Missouri; Karen Trigg, of Springfield, Missouri, and Ron and Joanne Steen of Penticton, British Columbia. His great-grandmother is Marguerite Davis, of Edmonton, Alberta.

Birth: Brittoni Gene Mode

 Brittoni Gene Mode was born on July 31, 2015, at Mad River Community Hospital in Arcata. She weighed 6 pounds 8 ounces and measured 19½ inches. Brittoni’s parents are Britton Franklin Mode and Holli Danier Olson of Crescent City. She joins big brothers Landen, Louis and Levi. Brittoni’s grandparents are Larry Mode, of Crescent City; Chris and Cheryl Vlachopoulos, of San Diego, and the late Judy Wangerin, of Crescent City. Her great-grandparents are Jacki Mode, of Arizona; Peggy Good, of Fort Dick; James Vlachopoulos, of San Diego; the late Johnny Mode and the late Joe and Etta Stow, both of Crescent City. 

Afternoon ensemble

 Artist Garretta Lamore and Del Norte Library employee Shane Gausepohl join the Friday Afternoon Ensemble at Del Norte Reads to celebrate Adult Literacy Day. The Del Norte County Library’s literacy program held an open house, a book sale and gave away raffle prizes during the event. The open house also introduced Literacy Coordinator Phoebe Lenhart to the community. The Friday Afternoon Ensemble include Pam Strong, Sibyl Wakefield, Laurie Neill, Bernice Jones, Susie Nutzhorn and Ann Donati.

Shear today, spin tomorrow

Donna Madeira skirts fleece at her sons Fort Dick home Thursday, picking through the wool to remove dung and other nasty bits. Del Norte Triplicate / Bryant Anderson
 Wendy Valentine approached her job with swift efficiency.

As soon as she was done with one client, farm interns brought forth another. When Herbert came forward, horns framing his wooly face, Valentine wrestled him onto his back and with a few buzzes of her shears divested him of his coat of fleece

At 5K, club will provide low-key but vital service

They won’t be running the route or distributing water, but the Del Norte Amateur Radio Club will still provide an important, if low-key, service.

The peculiar porcupine

Del Norte Triplicate file / Bryant Anderson
 For some Del Norters, the idea of porcupines rambling through the dune forests and marshes near lakes Earl and Tolowa may be a revelation.

But Humboldt State University Wildlife Professor Tim Bean has received reports of more sightings of the quill-covered critter, the third largest rodent in the world, at Tolowa Dunes State Park than any other part of California.

“I have a website where people can go and submit sightings if they see a porcupine,” Bean said. “That website went up about two years ago and most of the sightings were coming from Tolowa Dunes. About 80 percent (of reports) have come from Tolowa Dunes and Crescent City in general."

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