Badges, Bears, and Eagles in Today’s San Francisco Chronicle

Exotic animals are featured in the chapter "Metro Wardens" in Steven T. Callan's memoir, Badges, Bears, and Eagles--The True-Life Adventures of a California Fish and Game Warden.Tom Stienstra, columnist and outdoor writer for the San Francisco Chronicle, has writen about Badges, Bears, and Eagles in today’s (3/11/13) issue of the San Francisco Chronicle.   He refers to Chapter 7, “Metro Wardens,”  where I describe some of the many big cat and exotic animal incidents that occurred in Southern California during the 1970s and early 1980s.   At that time, there were believed to be as many captive African lions in the LA Basin as there were wild lions in Africa.  Read the story at SFGate.

Our First Book Signing

Author Steven T. Callan signs copies of his book Badges, Bears, and Eagles--The True-Life Adventures of a California Fish and Game Warden, at the 2013 NorCal Boat, Sport and RV Show.I am very happy to say that our first book signing event, at the NorCal Boat, Sport and RV Show, was a success. Thanks to the wonderful article in Saturday’s Redding Record Searchlight and all of the nice people who came by, we sold out in three hours. For those readers who have ordered through Amazon, the word I’m getting is three weeks to delivery. Barnes and Noble and Amazon are able to provide ebooks right away.

Tribute to the Giant Sea Bass

My friend Sergio Fainsztein recently posted an underwater photograph of a giant sea bass off La Jolla Cove, San Diego, on his Facebook page. The photograph reminded me of an incident that happened in 1958, when I was ten years old. We were on the beach at Casa Cove, a short distance from where the photo Fainsztein shared was taken.

A Dangerous Calling

Yesterday’s shootout with former LAPD officer Christopher Dorner should dispel any doubts about the dangerous nature of a California Fish and Game (Wildlife) officer’s job.  Here’s something you may not be aware of: California Fish and Game (Wildlife) wardens are not only empowered to enforce all state laws and local ordinances, they are also deputized federal officers, authorized to enforce federal laws dealing with fish and wildlife.

Great Place for a Nature Walk

The other day, my wife and I took a nature walk on the Battle Creek Wildlife Area.   We headed downstream from the County Line Bridge, along the Tehama County side of Battle Creek.  The sky was overcast and the ground was still wet from the previous day’s rain.  We had the entire 582-acre wildlife area to ourselves. It was so quiet; you could have heard a pine needle drop, except there are no pines along lower Battle Creek.  The riparian zone is vegetated with willows, blackberry thickets, Ailanthus and one of the oldest and tallest remaining stands of old growth cottonwoods and sycamores in California. I really don’t like mentioning Ailanthus (Chinese tree of heaven). Unfortunately, this incredibly invasive exotic is crowding out many of the native plant species.

A Look Inside Badges, Bears, and Eagles: Chapter 3, “Squeaky”

As day dawned, our previous enthusiasm had given way to absolute misery. To make matters worse, the mosquitoes returned and stuck around until about 7:00 a.m., when the scorching desert heat drove them away. There had been no sign of Squeaky or anyone else. My disillusioned partner and I wanted to pack up and go home, but something told us that Squeaky would show up any minute. An hour passed and Squeaky had still not come, so we waited one more hour and then another.