Saline Preservation Association

The voice of Saline Valley

 
Sign up Calendar Latest Topics
 
 
 


Reply
  Author   Comment   Page 3 of 6      Prev   1   2   3   4   5   6   Next
Tule

Avatar / Picture

Registered:
Posts: 103
 #31 
A coyote lying down that close to human activity in the open in daylight is something you will not likey see again.  As for the duck, well......
Lysdexic

Avatar / Picture

Registered:
Posts: 65
 #32 
Don't feed the ducks either....


Lysdexic

Avatar / Picture

Registered:
Posts: 65
 #33 
She's got her eyes on you.....

Tule

Avatar / Picture

Registered:
Posts: 103
 #34 
Oh, now I get it! Thats why there's a plunger available in the pit toilet at Palm.
trigger

Avatar / Picture

Registered:
Posts: 215
 #35 
If that's really the best way to measure the springs user rate I think I may be responsible for the false notion of increased usage. Sorry! Ill change my diet
Salt Peter

Avatar / Picture

Registered:
Posts: 613
 #36 
That does sound like a good way to figure out how much use the springs get. I'm really missing Saline and it has only been about a month since I was there. Need to get out somewhere soon!
Tule

Avatar / Picture

Registered:
Posts: 103
 #37 

Paul,

I know what you mean when you say it doesn't look like more people are using the springs.  I'm not aware of a study in this area.  However, since I'm only there once or twice a year (typically at off-peak times), I'm relying on the comments of others on this forum.  The best way to measure the user rate is--believe it or not--to monitor the human waste accumulation in the toilets.  Yeah, sounds nuts, but most metropolitan areas measure localized population densities by toilet flushes.  Certainly an enterprising federal employee can put together a grant proposal for a million dollar, five year study to measure----well----I'll stop there!  

paul belanger

Registered:
Posts: 264
 #38 
Tule 
Excellent and informative response.  But I make slight exception with one point, and it's the point many of us made when the NPS provided survey questions recently.....IS the human population at Saline increasing in recent years?  Seems to me it's the same as it's always been in the last 15 years.  I don't get out there as much as I used to, but when I do, it seems like there are never many people there.  In the 80's and early 90's there were MANY MORE people at the springs.  Though, back then I am pretty sure someone might have taken a few coyotes out with extreme prejudice, that may have made a difference.

Of course, your suggestions are common sense and should be heeded.
Tule

Avatar / Picture

Registered:
Posts: 103
 #39 
Paul,

Coyotes have been in SV as long as I can remember.  The recent increase in numbers at the springs may be tied to several factors.  The growth in popularity of the springs has made human food more readily available.  The increased food supply has likely attracted more adult yotes over time.  They in turn produce more pups--depending on the food supply.  IF  the mountain lion population in the Inyos is down, there are fewer natural adult coyote predators, thus an important regulating factor is missing.  I suspect this because I have seen much evidence of yotes on the eastern face of the Inyos indicating an overlap in habitats.  Add to this, after SV was incorporated into DVNP, coyote hunting in SV all but ceased--yet another regulating element is now missing.  Many of the people I see at the springs these days are not what I might think of as experienced wilderness folks (yes, subjective and somewhat judgmental).  They forget there are wild animals in their midst and don't take precautions to discourage raiding.  The simple things like throwing food scraps out into the brush or leaving unburned trash in their camp fires contributes to the problem.  As far as feeding them goes, sure it has had a detrimental effect on the yotes, however, stopping the feeding won't make them go away.  My suggestions are:

1. Establish and enforce a regulation regarding feeding the yotes
2. Implement and enforce rules regarding food sources and trash left unprotected
3. Implement selective pack control by professional hunters
4. NPS stops with the MMLGs (Make Me Look Goods) ie the palm tree eradication, and pay attention to the real problems
paul belanger

Registered:
Posts: 264
 #40 
Tule

You seem well versed in this subject, so let me ask a question.  People have been at the springs for decades. I have never seen people openly feeding coyotes until recently.  It seems to me the coyotes are present at the springs in numbers I have not witnessed before.  If it's not people openly feeding them, then why the increase in numbers?  Is there something else drawing them to the springs?  Possibly a decrease in the predator above the coyote on the feeding chain?  Who or what would that be?  Other possibilities?

My main advocation is that people not feed them and keep their food locked up. No one would say that feeding indigenous animals human food out in the wild is the right thing to do. That just seems like common sense to me. Hell, we get hungry out there and want to eat the food we bring, not let coyotes get it.
Tule

Avatar / Picture

Registered:
Posts: 103
 #41 

If the yotes were eliminated completely, the rodent population would spin out of control.  Rodents, other small game (i.e. lizards, young rabbits), and some plant materials are the mainstays of their diet.  Hand feeding the critters is very harmful, but still not the core of the problem.  A yote's olfactory system is about 60K + times as sensitive as a human's.  They can smell residual food odors from coolers, trash, packages, clothing etc.  As long as the odors are there, the food potential is present.  Yote being Yotes, they will find a way to the food unless stringent measures are in place to prevent access.  During our last visit they raided a cooler in our camp and took out a bag of chicken breasts, one of which dropped on the ground.  The yotes scrambled off with the bag and we could hear them fighting over it in the brush about 20 yards out.  To our surprise, a young dog came right into camp, walked up to the chicken they dropped, picked it up and left.  This happened within 10 ft of where George and I were standing with his dog.    

James Sel

Registered:
Posts: 360
 #42 
So if humans don't feed them in anyway; it won't affect the population in anyway? There is only a limited amount of rodent out there. If we don't feed them the population will correct itself.
Tule

Avatar / Picture

Registered:
Posts: 103
 #43 
Again, it doesn't matter if you stop feeding them. They have learned and have passed the word on to their pups. As long as the food supply is there and accessible, they will be after it. The next time you are at the springs take a hike around the mesquite groves in the low hills north of Upper Springs. Look at the tracks and droppings on the ground. You can see where they are denning and how heavily the area is now populated. The yotes will mate in Jan/Feb and the pups will whelp in April.  They will produce about 6 per litter, so there will be more--expect about a dozen--next year.  Nice to see "unregistered" down-graded the poison plan to laxatives.  However, laxatives intended for human consumption could kill a canine.  Don't give Feinstein's eco-nazis another reason to drive out the public whom they have so much contempt for.  Yeah, that's a direct slap to the "kill the palm trees" freak.  
James Sel

Registered:
Posts: 360
 #44 
But if we stop feeding them and they can't  get our food then; they will starve and die. Hey wait what a great idea just follow the park rules. The same rules designed to prevent this kinda problem. 


Salt Peter

Avatar / Picture

Registered:
Posts: 613
 #45 
Paul you are spot on. The NPS should be dealing with this tool of a person who is out there instead of worrying about those evil palm trees. I like the burros but will refrain from feeding them in the future as I have done one time in the past. If this person is brave enough to do nightly raids on peoples coolers then he/she is capable of more too. We don't need this type of person anywhere in the "Valley".

I've only been going to the springs for a couple years and from those couple years and during that short time I have noticed things changing. A friend and I put some paper plates in the fire but were tired and went to bed. We woke up when some yote took the paper out of the firepit. Needless to say I was wandering around picking up some stuff in the middle of the night. Lesson learned.

Last month with the greater number of people prior to Thanksgiving the yotes must have been less brazen. We didn't have any of troubles with our coolers left out. One group had buried their stash and I heard them talking in the morning about the digging marks in that area. The yotes need to be dealt with before someone is harmed, child or adult.
Previous Topic | Next Topic
Print
Reply

Quick Navigation:

Easily create a Forum Website with Website Toolbox.

Please consider supporting SPA with your tax deductible contribution