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Feather River Bulletin
Quincy, California
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April 15, 2015     Feather River Bulletin
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April 15, 2015
 

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12A Wednesday, April 15, 2015 Feather River Bulletin Volunteers from the local chapter of the Mule Deer Foundation tank for a wildlife guzzler over a manzanita thicket and up a National Forest on March 28. Photos courtesy Colin Dillingham roll an 800-pound, 1,800-gallon hill in a remote area in Plumas Volunteers pose with the final product after installing a new guzzler March 28 at the "Bear 1" site near Rush Hill Motorway, a spur road off the Seneca Road near Canyon Dam. Guzzler installations were made possible with a $25,000 grant from the national Mule Deer Foundation. ul The Mule Deer Foundation, based in Salt Lake City, Utah, awarded a $25,000 grant to the local Mt. Hough Ranger District of the Plumas National Forest to improve habitat for mule deer. The local chapter wasted no time and started utilizing those funds March 28. A long-term program, initiated in the 1980s by retired forester Gary Rotta to install a series of water catchment basins for wildlife, termed "wildlife guzzlers," received a huge boost for 2015. Each guzzler catches rain and snowfall and stores it in underground reservoirs for later use by wildlife such as deer, bears, foxes and quail. The guzzlers are placed on ridges where streams and ring lambs Three baby lambs follow their mother around the farm on Quincy Junction Road across from the high school April 8. The lambs were born on the farm right before Easter. Photo by James Wilson springs are not present to provide water. These guzzlers provide water so that wildlife can utilize additional habitat otherwise unavailable during the dry season of the year. Approximately 50 guzzlers have been installed across the Mt. Hough Ranger District. Plumas National Forest biologists Colin Dillingham and Michael Huhndorf submitted a grant to the Mule Deer Foundation for $25,000, with an expected program of annual increments of $6,250 to implement one guzzler per year over a four-year period, primarily in the Chips Fire area where the guzzlers had burned up or were destroyed in the past by heavy snow loads. Both were surprised when the Mule Deer Foundation decided to award the entire $25,000 grant in 2015 to install five guzzlers with Mule Deer Foundation funds. In addition, the Plumas County Fish and Game Commission awarded a grant to install a 500-gallon wildlife guzzler in an area burned in the Chips Fire. The ranger district was also planning to replace six guzzlers, five in the Moonlight Fire area and one in the Rich Fire area, that had burned up during those large wildfires. In total, there will be 12 guzzlers replaced in 2015. The biologists will team up with volunteers from the local Mule Deer Foundation to complete the work on the ground: The Plumas County chapter of the Mule Deer Foundation, led by volunteer coordinator Frank Smith, has installed 17 wildlife guzzlers on the Plumas National Forest in the past six years. Three have been installed on the Beckwourth Ranger District, and, including last week's effort, 14 have been installed on the Mt Hough Ranger District. On Saturday, March 28, the first two of 12 guzzlers planned for 2015 were installed by Mule Deer Foundation volunteers. Two nonfunctioning guzzlers, installed in the late 1980s by Rotta's wildlife crew, were replaced with new 1,800-gallon guzzlers. The previous guzzlers had failed because of heavy snow loads and a poor guzzler design. The new guzzlers, built by Boss Wildlife Tanks of Elko, Nevada, are made of poured resin in a single piece. None of the guzzlers installed over the past six years has had any malfunctions. A large crew of 11 Mule Deer Foundation volunteers from widely scattered locations showed up March 28, including leader Frank Smith from Quincy; Rotta; Darel Joseph from Genesee Valley; Dennis Smith and Chet Mitchell from Loyalton; Jerry Whipple from Greenville; and Steve Pearson, Colin Dillingham, Michael Huhndorf, Jim Reynolds and Chuck Hein from the Quincy area. This 11-person crew volunteered a total of 107 hours. The Plumas County Chapter of the Mule Deer Foundation has volunteered more than 500 hours per year for the past four years. In fact, this chapter has been the No. 1 chapter of all the Mule Deer Foundation chapters in the United States for two of the past four years. Contact Frank Smith at 283-2233 to volunteer. NEWSMAKER Air Force Airman Kieran C. Kelly graduated from basic military training at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, San Antonio, Texas. Kelly is the daughter of Krista Looza', of Roseville, and Cory Kelly of Lakeport, and stepdaughter of Joseph Looza, of Roseville. She is also the granddaughter of Ellen Jeskey, of Quincy, and Allen Hanley, of Loma Rica. The airman graduated in 2014 from oakmont High School in Roseville. The airman completed an intensive eight-week program that included training in military discipline and studies, Air Force core values, physical fitness, and basic warfare principles and skills. Airmen who complete basic training earn four credits toward an associate in applied science degree through the Community College of the Air Force. FOR 6 )NTHS!*