Far North

Mandibles and Mosquito Catchers

Like any collector, I have my unicorns. Near the top of my list was Holorusia haspera, the western giant crane fly. Looking like the biggest mosquito you ever saw, this is an impressive critter. I grew up calling them “mosquito catchers.” As a larva, they live near water, feeding on decaying vegetation in the moist soil. As adults, they are not known to feed at all. These fragile creatures resemblance to the pesky little vampires often gets them killed. I hadn’t seen one in years. The day after I received my newest camera, ordered for its impressive focus stacking capability, I noticed one with a nearly 5-inch leg span on my wall. It was very cooperative so I took dozens of shots using every technique I know for the little camera. Yay, for coincidence. After our photo session, I moved my model outside and let it go. I could have killed and mounted it, but had no reason to. The photos are enough and I hope it goes forth and multiplies. On July 18, I found a giant California prionus (Prionus californicus) beetle in my local…

Manibles and Mosquito Catchers

Like any collector, I have my unicorns. Near the top of my list was Holorusia haspera, the western giant crane fly. Looking like the biggest mosquito you ever saw, this is an impressive critter. I grew up calling them “mosquito catchers.” As a larva, they live near water, feeding on decaying vegetation in the moist soil. As adults, they are not known to feed at all. These fragile creatures resemblance to the pesky little vampires often gets them killed. I hadn’t seen one in years. The day after I received my newest camera, ordered for its impressive focus stacking capability, I noticed one with a nearly 5-inch leg span on my wall. It was very cooperative so I took dozens of shots using every technique I know for the little camera. Yay, for coincidence. After our photo session, I moved my model outside and let it go. I could have killed and mounted it, but had no reason to. The photos are enough and I hope it goes forth and multiplies. On July 18, I found a giant California prionus (Prionus californicus) beetle in my local…

Clam Beach Hike

Beautiful walk along Clam Beach shore Scampered over dunes and grass and more Driftwood wet upon the sand Placed there gently by ocean’s hand A misty day, no sun is seen The water a pale metallic green No voices heard, nor others this day Save a man, his daughter, their dog at play The mighty Mad River has burst forth Shifting sea lions’ places north A soothing sound to carry all sorrow Perhaps, except soreness, come tomorrow! …

A Show of Respect

Editor: I recently had the honor to be part of a funeral procession of a Korean War hero who had been missing in action (NCJ Daily, June 20). It was a touching event to see people lined up along the roadway with flags showing their respect. There was even two Highway Patrol officers saluting as we passed. That sight brought tears to my eyes and I heard later that I was not the only one. My sympathies to the family. I am pleased they finally got their loved one back after so many years. I would like to thank the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office for the escort from the county line to Arcata. I would also like to thank my employer Pacific Builders for enthusiastically allowing me the time off for this special event. As a child, I remember seeing funeral processions but as an adult I can’t remember the last time I saw one. From what I witnessed during this procession, I have to assume not many drivers are familiar with them either so I thought I would give some helpful hints on funeral…

Straight from the PALCO Playbook

An ember of the old Timber Wars is still smoldering in the woods near Rainbow Ridge in the Mattole. There, a stand-off between forest defenders and Humboldt Redwood Co. is heating up. It is like 1997 all over again — tree-sitters are blocking road construction and logging operations, the sheriff’s office and private security are roughing up protestors and humans are locking their bodies to gates and heavy equipment. Only this time, it isn’t Charles Hurwitz’s Pacific Lumber Co., but its successor, the Humboldt Redwood Co. In 2008, when Humboldt Redwood Co. purchased Pacific Lumber Co.’s assets during bankruptcy, it promised to be a new kind of timber company: open with the public, protective of old growth and endangered species, a good neighbor and tolerant of criticism, such that they wouldn’t call out the dogs when protestors would invariably lock themselves to things (this is Humboldt, after all). The Environmental Protection Information Center, or EPIC, tentatively supported Humboldt Redwood Co.’s purchase during bankruptcy. And we were stunned and thrilled when the company lived up to its word for roughly a decade. But recently, the company…

‘Thoughtful and Responsible’

Editor: Thank you for your responsible coverage of the white nationalist recruitment fliers posted in our community (“EPD Investigating White Supremacist Group’s Local Recruiting Efforts,” July 10). You chose to crop out (though at first unsuccessfully) the social media and email contact information so as not to give this hate group free advertising. That was the responsible thing to do as a journalist and as a community member. Not all local media chose to do the same — the Lost Coast Outpost notably had no issue with helping spread hate group propaganda in this way. The North Coast Journal’s thoughtful and responsible approach to this topic was much appreciated. Allison Edrington, Eureka…

‘Too Great to Hate’

Editor: I feel so grateful to live in a place where attempts to recruit our young people to the side of hatred is not tolerated (“EPD Identifies Juvenile Responsible for Hate Group Fliers, Says no Immediate Threat of Violence,” posted July 11). While it may have been shocking to many people to read about the flier that was posted in Henderson Center, I hope it was equally heartening to witness our community, including our elected officials and law enforcement officers, respond swiftly and appropriately. I was also grateful to read that the teenage boy who placed the flier has already been identified and is being connected with resources that might help him address some of the issues that led him to make this decision. It sounds as though his family cares about him very much and I hope he knows that the rest of his community in Eureka also wants him to be well. Eureka is too great to hate. Linda Stansberry, Eureka…

Collateral Damage

It would appear Humboldt County remains a cannabis trendsetter. Leafly is reporting that Humboldt County’s controversial strategy of dealing with illicit grow operations through civil code enforcement abatement notices and fines of up to $10,000 per day, per violation has caught other jurisdictions’ attention. A similar program is already in place in Sonoma County, according to the Leafly article, and another is ready to go live this summer in Mendocino County as other jurisdictions mull taking a similar approach. Sacramento, meanwhile, passed a law July 1 to impose civil fines of up to $30,000 per day on folks operating unlicensed dispensaries. According to the article, the Humboldt County Planning and Building Department sent out 597 cannabis-related abatement notices in 2018 and 148 so far this year. Those on the receiving end of the notices have 10 days to remove their plants and correct the code violation before they face the daily fines, which can run for up to 90 days to a tab of $900,000. Once the number hits that threshold, the county begins taking collection action, which could include property liens. The article notes…

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