Jim Morris

Mallards taking flight

Episode 27: The Birds

It took longer than normal, but fortunately it is happening. A shallow amount of water is showing up in rice fields throughout the Sacramento Valley – essentially a welcome mat for the 10 million ducks, geese and other wildlife migrating through our area for their annual Pacific Flyway journey. This year was the driest in …

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Episode 25: Go Time for Harvest and the Wildlife Migration

Even during difficult times like we’ve been experiencing, it helps to look for the positive. In Sacramento Valley rice country – two positives are unfolding. After a difficult year where drought left 20 percent of fields unplanted, harvest of America’s sushi rice is underway and early reports are favorable. Although acreage is down, initial reports …

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Cinnamon Teals taking flight

Episode 24: Must Add Water

What is shaping up as the most significant drought in decades has impacted much of the West. A lack of adequate rain, sizzling temperatures and a snowpack that all but vanished have led to major cutbacks in surface water deliveries, including to Sacramento Valley rice fields. This year’s rice acreage is about 20 percent lower …

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Marina Guzman releasing a bird into the air. Photo credit: Holly A. Heyser

Episode 23: Whatever it Takes

(Above) photo credit: Holly A. Heyser The driest year in decades has been a jolt to much of California. Challenges extend beyond cities and farms, as wildlife is impacted by a sharp drop in habitat. One saving grace in the Sacramento Valley is the continued creativity and collaboration between rice growers and conservation groups. Millions …

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Dunlin flock taking flight

Episode 22: Nurturing Nature

The driest year California has experienced since the 1970s will have wide-ranging impacts in the West. In the Sacramento Valley, a reduced water supply will lead to about a 20 percent reduction in rice plantings. The loss of about 100,000 acres of rice fields has implications well beyond the farm level. The reduced plantings will …

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