What about bloodsucking Leeches?
5/5/11 -- California Outdoors Q&As by Carrie Wilson
Question: My daughter and I love to swim and play in waters wherever we find them. While in French Gulch (Shasta County) last year, we decided to play around in Clear Creek.
The creek was running pretty high, but when my daughter and I got out we had these black, worm-like things hanging off us. Our first thought was leeches, which got us out of the water quite quickly! Someone told me they were rock worms and wouldn’t hurt us. We haven’t returned there though because we’re still too scared they were leeches.
We also stopped at Eagle Lake (Lassen County) to go swimming and ended up with these tiny little round slime balls on us. When picking up these slimy things in question, they flattened out on our hands and started slithering like a leech across our hands. This was another trip where my daughter and I ran screaming out of the water to rinse off under the faucet! There were lots of people swimming in the lake who either didn’t seem to notice or else knew something we didn’t.
Clear Creek was a very cold creek, but Eagle Lake was very warm, so I could understand Eagle Lake possibly having leeches. Do these leeches suck human blood? Are they harmful to humans in any way? I love the outdoors and swimming, but too many encounters with creepy leech-like things are making me leery about the safety of it. (Kim B.)
Answer: Without pictures, it’s tough to say, but it sounds like you encountered two different invertebrates. According to Department of Fish and Game (DFG) Associate Fish Pathologist Garry Kelley, Ph.D., the organism at Clear Creek was likely a free-living caddis fly larvae (Genus Rhyacophila), commonly known as a rock worm. This type of caddis fly crawls around rock bottoms in search of food and is commonly eaten by trout. Caddis flies are not at all harmful to humans.
The organism at Eagle Lake might be a leech based on the “slithering” swimming motion you described. There are many types of leeches and most are fluid feeders. Leeches are either scavengers or are parasitic (i.e., they feed on other organisms). Some species of leeches suck blood from vertebrates (humans, waterfowl, fish, etc.) while others feed on insects, mollusks, oligochaetes or dead animal matter. Kelley suspects the organism described at Eagle Lake was non-parasitic in nature because bloodsucking was not indicated.
Can cow cod caught in Mexico be imported to U.S. waters?
Question: If we’re fishing in Mexican waters and catch a cow cod, can we legally bring it back into a California port as long as we have all of the proper licenses and the Declaration for Entry form properly filled out? I’d just like to know for sure as we fish Mexican waters frequently targeting rockfish and I’d like to avoid a citation. (Jeff M., San Diego)
Answer: No. Cowcod may not be imported or even possessed in California regardless of where caught (Fish and Game Code, section 2353(a)(2)). Broomtail groupers and canary, yelloweye and bronze-spotted rockfishes are also illegal to be possessed or imported into California under this regulation and under California Code of Regulations Title 14, section 28.55(b)(1), even if they were taken legally in Mexico.
How many turkeys in possession?
Question: I’m going out of town on a three-day turkey hunt and need some clarification on the possession limit. If my buddy and I each get a turkey each day (total of six) and get stopped by a warden on the way home, will we be legal? I heard that you can’t have more than one bird with you at a time, but the regulation states possession limit is three birds per hunter for the season. I want to make sure I am legal. Otherwise I will have to travel back and forth after each successful day and it’s about a two-hour drive each way. Any information you could give me would be appreciated. (Brent M.)
Answer: The daily bag limit for turkeys during the spring season is one bearded turkey per day and you can take three per season. According to retired DFG Capt. Phil Nelms, you may have three bearded turkeys in your possession as long as you only take one per day. You do not have to return home after taking a bird on any one day.
Fishing for sanddabs
Question: When fishing for sanddabs, how many hooks can be attached to the line on a single rod? (Len P.)
Answer: You may fish for sanddabs with as many hooks as you like on a single rod, unless rockfish, lingcod or salmon are on the vessel or in possession, in which case special restrictions apply (CCR Title 14, section 28.65).
Carrie Wilson is a marine biologist with the California Department of Fish and Game. While she cannot personally answer everyone’s questions, she will select a few to answer each week. Please contact her at CalOutdoors@dfg.ca.gov.
More Outdoor News
California miners take on the State04/16/14 -- Gold miners are headed for a showdown over the State’s ban on mining. Gold miners from across the state are assembling in Rancho Cucamonga for what’s being called the most significant mining case in a... Full Story
Rethink Rodenticide: Use better mousetrap04/15/14 -- Recent news that California will remove second-generation rodenticides from the consumer market was welcome at the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW). Unfortunately, some consumers... Full Story
Lecture series typical of new CA DFW04/15/14 -- The California Department of Fish and Wildlife is offering a Conservation Lecture Series to the general public via the department’s website, starting Thursday, April 17. This lecture series introduces participants...Full Story
Go wild at Lava Beds & Tule Lake
Property exchange in Oregon aids Park04/13/14 -- The Oregon State Parks and Recreation Commission approved an exchange proposal affecting a portion of the Bandon State Natural Area in Coos County at its April 9, 2014 meeting in Bend. Under the exchange...Full Story
Thinning at Lassen closes campground04/12/14 -- Low snow levels have provided an opportunity for Lassen Volcanic National park to continue work on the Northwest Gateway Forest Restoration Project. "Mechanical thinning used as a tool in developed... Full Story
Turtle Bay honors Funding Families
Do Surfperch Fry Count Toward Limit?
04/10/14 -- In Santa Barbara a surf fisherman was seen last week eating baby perch squeezed from a gravid female. How do live fry from perch relate to a daily limit in possession if consumed? Also, if dead fry are... Full Story
The Mystery of the Middle Fork – Part #3By Jim Broshears
04/09/14 -- Our search for Tuck’s lost meadow continued in 2013. After three previous trips and multiple days of searching, you might be wondering why we don’t just call it a day. Or possibly question why we have not... Full Story
Oregon Weekly Recreation Report04/09/14 -- Spring trout fishing -- as spring progresses, trout fishing will only get better. Stocking schedules for all zones have been posted on the trout stocking page, as are Google-based maps showing all...Full Story
Introducing Arm Pocket ArmbandsBy Gary Heffley
04/08/14 -- There are times when you see something and the lights go off in your head thinking, this is neat or why didn’t I think of this? Well my introduction to the Arm Pocket, “The Ultimate Arm Band” was...Full Story
Extreme Beam FlashlightsBy Gary Heffley
04/08/14 -- Let’s get right to the point Extreme Beam Flashlights are durable, dependable, have great tactical applications and outshines most of the competition. What’s that you say, you have looked at some of the competition...Full Story
Wandering the Warner’s
04/01/14 -- Nestled in the extreme northeast corner of California is the Warner Mountains and the only designated wilderness area is the South Warner Wilderness. This is an isolated piece of mountain paradise...Full Story
The “Death Wobble” -- Be safe not sorry!
03/31/14 -- Death Wobble is not to be confused with a front-end shimmy or a wheel balance problem. A Death Wobble (DW) is very common on vehicles with a solid front axle. It has earned its name, not from mechanics but by vehicle... Full Story
Fins, Fur and Feather Sports is back
03/30/14 – Fins, Fur and Feather Sports (FFF) is re-opened for business. It has been nearly two months to the day since a tall pine tree blew over and came through the roof causing the temporary closure. Fortunately,...Full Story
Go wild for waterfalls at Whiskeytown03/26/14 -- Visitors to Whiskeytown NRA can "Go Wild for Waterfalls" by taking the Whiskeytown Waterfall Challenge during National Park Week Saturday, April 19 through Sunday, April 27.This year... Full Story
10th anniversary party set for Sundial
CA DFW April 2014 Calendar03/26/14 -- Docent-led walks are scheduled every Saturday and Sunday from, 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. at the Elkhorn Slough Ecological Reserve. Binoculars and bird books are available for the public to borrow at no... Full Story
Climate Coin Toss
03/25/14 -- [Posted with permission of FISHBIO.com] In recognition of World Water Day, we thought it relevant to revisit the drought situation in California. Although we have received a dose of precipitation over the last couple of weeks, it has... Full Story
ODFW traps/euthanizes cougars near park
Warden’s book is ‘Book of Year’ finalist
03/19/14 -- Retired game warden Steven T. Callan has earned accolades with his debut book, Badges, Bears, and Eagles—The True-Life Adventures of a California Fish and Game Warden, published by... Full Story
OR Recreation Council seeks nominees03/16/14 -- The Oregon Recreation Trails Advisory Council is seeking nominations for its annual Doug Newman Recreation Trails Achievement Award. Named after deceased Council member Doug Newman... Full Story
Be safe on the beach this spring03/15/14 -- Spring break is just around the corner, but winter still lingers along the Oregon coast. The Oregon Parks and Recreation Department wants you to be safe while visiting the ocean beach. "During the next few... Full Story
Snowy plovers nesting on S. Ore. coast03/12/14 -- The nesting season of the western snowy plover, a small shorebird native to the Oregon coast, begins in mid-March. That means that as of March 15, beachgoers will see signs and ropes that identify... Full Story
The Mystery of the Middle Fork, Part II
03/10/14 -- Our return to the Middle Fork of Feather River would take place in August of 2012. Having nearly 10 months to plan the next exploration, we, of course, waited until the last minute decide our course of action... Full Story
Workshop for outdoor gals set for October
Pit Bulls & Other Perils
03/01/14 -- I live in a rural area and our home is located approximately 300 yards from the Mokelumne River in San Joaquin county. A large cherry orchard and an expansive dry-farmed field lie between our home and...Full Story
Turtle Bay welcomes new Golden Eagle!
The Mystery of the Missing Valley, Part I
02/15/14 -- Part #1 Exploring the Middle Fork of the Feather River -- Stories about hidden valleys, waterfalls, canyons and fishing are part of outdoor folklore. Most of these tales begin with “When I was a kid we went to this place” and...Full Story
The Big Adventure opened at Turtle Bay
CDFW offers wildflower tours at reserve01/25/14 -- The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) is offering a free, naturalist-led tour of North Table Mountain Ecological Reserve near Oroville in March and April. Tour leaders will discuss the area’s...Full Story
How to see thru headlight lens repair fads
01/22/14 -- In the early stages fade on headlight lenses appears as a fogged lens. At its worse condition it is whitish and no longer clear. I was walking past a row of cars at the mall when I noticed several parked cars with faded...Full Story
CDFW seeks comment on listing of bat01/13/14 -- The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) is seeking public comment on a proposal to list the Townsend’s big-eared bat as an endangered or threatened species. CDFW’s petition...Full Story
Fee Free Days set for BLM-Public Lands
Registration opens for Nature Bowl12/31/13 -- Registration is now open for the 29th annual Nature Bowl, an elementary school activity-based competition held in the spring. Coordinated by the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) in partnership...Full Story
Floating islands enhance salmonid recovery
11/19/13 – In an article here last summer we described an amazing new technology called “BioHavens®” also known as “floating Islands” being created around the world by Floating Islands West of Mokelumne Hill, California, and how...Full Story
Old Station guide is also a great artistBy Mike Mogler
05/29/13 -- Chuck Gularte, co-owner of Rim Rock Ranch, located in Old Station just across Hwy. 89 from Hat Creek, has been a resident here since 2000 and has observed the fish and wildlife of this resource-rich region as the seasons... Full Story
BLM seeks input on use of OR public lands01/30/13 – Resource Management Plans or RMPs are a process in which the BLM is working with communities, to gain innovative ideas and to identify the latest natural resource research on how your Oregon public lands will...Full Story