As ranchers diversify, jobs for protection dogs multiply

A county agricultural program that has for years helped sheep ranchers fund the protection of their flocks is now also helping to protect pasture-raised chickens. Although the freedom to wander produces a more humane egg, it also make birds more vulnerable to rapacious predators. As ranchers look to diversify their farms—and as the demand for pasture-raised protein increases—a few of Marin’s egg and poultry producers are using livestock guardian dogs to watch over chickens. For now the number of such farmers participating in the county’s cost-share program, which partially pays for nonlethal predator control methods such as fencing and guard animals, is small. Of the 24 participating ranches that use guard dogs, only four use them for poultry. Three use them for goats. But Anita Sauber, an inspector with Marin’s Department...

Motorcyclist found in Keys Creek

The body of a 26-year-old Novato man was found floating in Keys Creek on Monday after an apparent motorcycle accident. According to Andrew Barclay of the California Highway Patrol, the accident is believed to have been speed-related and did not involve another vehicle. Mr. Barclay said that the victim, Justin...

Lighter touch to fire prevention debuted in county vegetation plan

A draft biodiversity and vegetation management plan that will guide the management of 16,000 acres of county open space was unveiled on Tuesday at a joint meeting of the Board of Supervisors and the Open Space District board amid concerns over its approach to fire fuel management. The district argued...

Lunny quarry sued over water quality, 
oyster farm up next

A Sonoma County-based environmental group with a litigious history is suing Lunny Grading and Paving and has announced its intention to file suit against Drakes Bay Oyster Company, both over alleged violations of the Clean Water Act. River...

Forest Knolls fire destroys one home

One trailer burned to the ground and three others were damaged at a Forest Knolls mobile home park during the wee hours Friday morning in a fire whose origins are yet unknown. Bill Everett, the owner of the trailer that first caught fire, screamed out for help at around 1 a.m. “I hear someone screaming, ‘I’m dying, help me, help me,’” said Denise Bowman, the manager...

Supes weigh in on library critique

County supervisors submitted a mixed response on Tuesday to the citizen watchdog that earlier this year reported layers of inadequacies in the Marin County Free Library. In its April 29 report, the Marin County Civil Grand Jury criticized the county library system for excluding employees from planning and failing to...

Board nomination period is open

The Marin County Registrar of Voters announced last week that district elections scheduled for November 5—a day that may feel farther away than it actually is—will determine who holds the numerous vacant seats on West Marin special district and school boards. Locally, there are two open seats on the boards...

Oyster lawsuit paused by county

A Marin Superior Court judge on Tuesday finalized a ruling that pauses the lawsuit filed by Drakes Bay Oyster Company against the California Coastal Commission pending the resolution of the oyster farm’s federal litigation. Judge Lynn Duryee’s ruling protects Kevin Lunny’s operation from fines levied by the commission during that...

Vacancies on county boards

Volunteers are being sought to serve on the Marin County Mental Health Board to represent mental health consumers, family members and the public interest. Board members are appointed by county supervisors to represent and advocate for the mental health needs of the people of Marin and to promote education, prevention...

Solomon to picket Pelosi party

Norman Solomon, progressive political activist and media critic, is planning a protest this Saturday outside a Belvedere residence where House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, who has supported the Obama administration’s classified national surveillance program, will appear at a private reception fundraiser billed at $2,000 to $32,000 a ticket. Mr. Solomon,...


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