December 2013

Posted by: Courtney Sexton, Defenders

The Defenders team in California is often on the ground in the local communities working on hands-on projects that engage community members in conservation activities. This is a great way to show people how the policies we strive to implement on the legal level are directly connected to real wildlife issues. Below, two partners of Defenders write about their experiences helping out with some of our popular grassroots projects in California.

In 2008, Defender Jeremy Terhune helped found the Friends of the Lower Calaveras River (FLCR) project. Defenders now supports Jeremy in his work to build support for wildlands, wildlife and river conservation in the Central Valley as an organizer based in Stockton, CA. Jeremy focuses on building constituency support for the San Joaquin River Restoration Project and participating in the San Joaquin River Partnership, as well as continuing his work to protect the Lower Calaveras River and educating under-served communities and children in the planning, design and use of river restoration projects in the San Joaquin Valley.

Click here to

Photo by Jim Marsh

Of all the photos naturalist Jim Marsh has taken along the Calaveras River, this one would seem to be the least “natural.”

But it just might tell the story best.

Marsh has spent the past year regularly visiting a 3-acre portion of the Calaveras where native grasses were planted last winter in a modest effort to restore the glorified drainage ditch.

During his weekly visits, Marsh does what most of us would never think to do along that stream. He opens his eyes. There isn’t much to see yet in the restoration area, or so it would seem, but Marsh has found surprising beauty even in the smallest insects and flowers found at the site. He also listens to the ambient noise — the wind, the birds, the bustle of the surrounding city. His observations are written down in a journal.

– See more at: