By Paul Buttner
As the wildlife guy for the California rice industry, I often draw the short straw by having to drive around and see all the beautiful wildlife that use California wildlife. It's a tough job but somebody’s got to do it! Nearly 230 species use these fields, some more than others. This list includes over a dozen species of beautiful shorebirds from the small Western Sandpiper to the much larger Long-billed Curlew.
Each of these shorebirds occupies its own special niche on the farming landscape. The one that always mystifies me is the Killdeer. This is because the Killdeer loves to lay its eggs on gravel roads. Yes, the same gravel roads that cars drive upon. Yet the species lives on!
Paul Buttner is Environmental Affairs Manager for the California Rice Commission.