Deer Tick, a Questing Bloodsucker

Even if bloodsucking arachnids make you scratch, it’s worth spending a few minutes learning about the behaviors of this tiny creature who survives by hitching rides and drinking blood. While ticks have the potential to spread serious disease, if you know where they hang-out, how do inspections, and how to properly remove them, you can minimize the danger to yourself, your family, and your pets.

Where Ticks Hang-out

Deer ticks are found in places near potential hosts. In Nevada County, those include; deer, squirrel, mice, rabbits, birds, lizards, woodrats, bobcats, skunks, gophers, dogs, cats, humans and other animals with blood.

Blood meals are required for growth. Black-legged ticks (aka Deer Ticks) are hard-bodied and require a host to progress through each life stage. Between meals, they wait, often going into diapause, a state of suspended development.

When not connected to a host, ticks require cool moist places like;

  • leaf litter
  • overgrown shrubs
  • high grass
  • wooded areas
  • woodpiles
  • low branches
  • logs
  • bird feeders
  • moisture-retaining garden features such as mulch or stone walls

Myths

Ticks  do not;

  •  jump
  • drop from trees
  • fly 

They only crawl and climb. To move long distances, ticks must do so while attached to a host.

 

How Ticks Sense Hosts and Know When to Ready Their Grappling Hooks

  • body odor
  • vibration
  • heat
  • breath
  • moisture

questing tick larvae

Questing Behavior

Questing is when a tick prepares to latch onto a host. Like a pirate with a grappling hook, a tick perches at the end of grass blades or branches, waiting with outstretched front legs.  After hooking onto hair or clothing, the tick begins to ascend. They travel up, looking for locations with thinner skin and for places where hosts cannot reach.

Questing Black-legged (Deer) tick. Photo Credit: National Park Service

Newtown Rd. bobcat with an engorged tick. Photo Credit: Terry & Anita Hansen

 Life Span

In warm climates, a tick’s life span may only last a year. In Nevada County, where it’s cold, a tick has a three-year life span. 

Fall through Winter

Tick life starts out as an egg.

Larvae hatch with six legs. *They go into diapause, suspended development, whenever weather conditions are not ideal.

Spring

 The larva attaches to a host – usually a small animal –  for its first blood meal – which can last from days to weeks – then drops off.

Summer through Winter

After molting, a larva becomes a nymph, gains two additional legs, and overwinters in this stage.

2nd Spring

Nymphs seek out a host for a second blood meal – which can last from days to weeks – then drops off.

2nd Summer through Winter

Nymphs molt into adults and overwinter in this stage.

3rd Spring

Adults seek out a third blood meal – usually on a large animal – where they feed and mate through the summer.  Males die after mating.

3rd Fall

Females drop off the host to lay eggs on the ground. She’ll lay about twenty eggs a day and can lay over a thousand in a month-and-a-half. At this life stage, most of her body weight is comprised of the eggs. When she’s finished laying, her body collapses.

*Engorged females, ready to lay eggs will look for soil as a first choice, but if she drops off inside a house, she will seek places like hampers, bathroom rugs, or a pile of damp laundry.

 

Life stages: larvae, nymph, adult male and female.

Hardiness

Using diapause, ticks can survive long periods of drought. They can also survive underwater for two to three days and can last for two years without a blood meal.

Most Active

Adult black-legged ticks (aka Deer Ticks) are most active after the first frost in fall and again in spring.

Squirrels Carry Bacteria

In California, the Western gray squirrel is known to harbor the bacterium –Borrelia burgdorferi– that causes Lyme Disease. Ticks pick this up during their first or second blood meal.

Lizards – Western Lyme Heros

 

Western Fence Lizard with tick Photo Credit Jerry Kirkhart

While in the larva or nymph stage, ticks frequently find lizard hosts. 

Alligator lizard with ticks. Photo Credit Steve Jervetson

A protein in lizard blood kills the Lyme disease causing bacteria.

 

Lizards may be the reason Lyme Disease is not as prevalent in the western states as it is in the east.

Once a tick is finished with its lizard liquid, the bacteria won’t be transmitted to the next host.

 Predators

Ants, frogs, lizards, poultry, and opossums.

Tick Inspection & Bite Prevention

  • Wear light-colored clothes – long pants + long-sleeved shirts.
  • Apply bug spray with at least 20% Deet. (Permethrin on clothes only.)
  • Keep to the middle of the trail and try not to brush against branches or grass.
  • Frequently stop to check pant legs for ticks.
  • Check companions for ticks in places they can’t see. 
  • Also do periodic checks on animals, focusing on head, ears, and neck.
  • If possible, shower within two hours of spending time in a tick zones.

Tick Removal 

Because ticks have numbing agents in their saliva, you won’t feel it when mouthparts penetrate.

With tweezers, grab the tick close to the skin and pull straight out.

Ticks & Disease

“Ticks transmit the widest variety of pathogens of any blood-sucking arthropod, including bacteria, rickettsiae, protozoa, and viruses,” comments Larisa Vredevoe, Ph.D, Department of Entomology, University of California, Davis

**It’s important to remove ticks as soon as possible. It takes between 36 to 48 hours for a Borrelia burgdorferi carrier tick to transmit the bacteria from the gut to the salivary glands.

Interactive Lyme Disease and Tick Survey

From the data on the Interactive Lyme Disease and Tick Survey,

the majority of Lyme disease causing ticks in Nevada County come from the South Yuba River watershed.

Nevada County Cases of Lyme Disease

Between 2000 and 2016, Nevada County reported 48 cases of Lyme Disease

Nevada County, incidence per 100,000 person-years = 2.73

The highest risk counties in California are; Trinity, Humboldt, and Mendocino.

Seek Medical Attention

If a rash or skin irritation occurs after a tick bite, promptly seek medical attention.

Lyme Rash

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If you’re not too ‘bugged’ by this post, you might also like Fleas and Disease in the California Gold Rush 

Resources:

Bay Area Lyme Foundation – Are Deer to Blame?

California Department of Public Health – Lyme Disease

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention – Tick prevention, removal, symptoms, and data

Frontiers in Cellular and Infection Microbiology – Blocking pathogen transmission at the source: reservoir targeted OspA-based vaccines against Borrelia burgdorferi

John Hopkins Lyme Disease  Research Center – Preventing Lyme Disease

Lyme Disease Association – Tick Removal

Nevada County Tick ID & Testing & Q and A PDF’s

Nevada County Reports of Lyme disease by the year

New York Times – Lyme Diseases’s Worst Enemy? It Might be Foxes

SF Gate – Lizards Slow Lyme Disease in West / Ticks bite them – and leave with purified blood

San Mateo County Mosquito & Vector Control District – Lizards, Ticks and Lyme Disease

Smithsonian Magazine (VIDEO)Mother tick laying eggs

The Union (2008) Ticks that cause Lyme disease are prevalent in county

UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology – California Ticks  &  Tick Biology

University of California, Berkeley – Feeding on lizard blood strips ticks of dangerous Lyme disease bacterium

University of California San Francisco (2018) Lyme Disease is on the Rise – An Expert Explains Why

University of California San Francisco – Gene Signature Could Lead to a New Way of Diagnosing Lyme

WebMD – All about Ticks FAQ 2019

 

Saliva Studies

 
Mating & Egg Laying

University of California TV – Lyme Disease – History and Current Controversies (2013)

Bat – a Colonial Insectivore

Bats are the only flying mammals. Wing membranes are attached to their fingers. After rodents, they are the largest order of Earth animals. 

Microbats live in California. they are insectivores and can eat their weight in insects daily. (Large bats, such as the Fruit Bat, also known as a Flying Fox, live in tropical climates.)

Roost/Colony:

Roosts, which can contain up to thirty generations of family members, are used for protection, warmth, grooming, eating, resting, and mating. Roosting sites include caves, mines, bridges, buildings, crevices, and tree hollows. Bats are nocturnal. They leave their roosts at dusk to hunt and drink water at night.

Since roosts are where large numbers of bats congregate, it’s a system that provides fertile conditions for the spread of diseases such as, rabies, histoplasmosis, and other viruses. Roosts are where White-nose syndrome is spreading (see below).

The Mexican free-tailed bat or Brazilian free-tailed bat (Tadarida brasiliensis) is a migrating bat native to the Americas. Since it roosts in large numbers in few locations, it’s vulnerable to habitat destruction. This bat is considered a species of special concern in California because of declining populations.

Environmental Obstacles:

A keystone species, bats keep ecosystems healthy by controlling insect populations, but they’ve got obstacles. Habitat loss and destruction of roosting sites, wind farms on migratory pathways, and drought are a few.  White-nose syndrome, a muzzle and wing flesh-eating fungus, has decimated bat populations across North America.

Some good news for California bats may be forest lands opened up by wildfires.  UC Berkeley postdoctoral researcher Zachary Steel found that certain bat populations have increased in burned forests. The causes are still under study but causes may be increased food sources, roosting locations in dead trees, and/or more space for flight maneuverability 

Special Adaptations:

Bats hunt with echolocation, sounds out of human hearing range that help locate prey.

While bats can use their mouths to catch prey, most bugs are caught in their wing membranes and either eaten in the air or carried to a roosting spot.

Bats have bendy bones which makes them ultra maneuverable. Some say bats have the fastest horizontal flying speed of any animal, close to 99 miles per hour!

Among roosting bats that create large quantities of urine and guano, they’ve developed respiratory mucous Ph buffer. 

Torpor is an important adaptation for microbats. It can range from a partial state of heterothermic arousal to full hibernation. Lowing body temperature reduces the need for food and fat storage.

A new study by University of California, Berkeley, researchers shows that bats’ brain activity is literally in sync when bats engage in social behaviors like grooming, fighting or sniffing each other.

Using scent markers and sound, mothers can locate their own babies out of thousands.

Life Span

10-20 years

Diet:

  • mosquitos
  • moths
  • beetles
  • dragonflies
  • flies
  • wasps
  • ants
  • grasshoppers
  • termites

Breeding

Photo Credit: Mnolf

Females can breed after 9 months of age, they congregate in maternity roosts.
Males become sexually mature at two years.
Gestation is about three months.
Generally, one pup is born per year. 
Young suckle for between four to seven weeks.
Mother’s must eat their body weight in insects to keep up with nursing demands.


Predators

  • owls
  • hawks
  • falcons

Roosts may come under predation from:

  • climbing animals
  • cats
  • coyote
  • raccoon
  • some species of snakes

Bat Species in Nevada County

  • Big Brown Bat, EPTESICUS FUSCUS
  • California Myotis, MYOTIS CALIFORNICUS
  • Canyon Bat, WESTERN PIPISTRELLE
  • Fringed Myotis, MYOTIS THYSANODES
  • Hoary Bat, LASIURUS CINEREUS
  • Little Brown Myotis, MYOTIS LUCIFUGUS
  • L0ng-eared Myotis, MYOTIS EVOTIS
  • Long-legged Myotis, MYOTIS VOLANS
  • Mexican Free-tail, TADARIDA BRASILIENSIS (migratory)
  • Pallid Bat, ANTROZOUS PALLIDUS
  • Silver-Haired Bat, LASIONYCTERIS NOCTIVAGANS
  • Western Red Bat, LASIURUS BLOSSEVILLII
  • Yuma Myotis, MYOTIS YUMANENSIS

White-Nose Syndrome

“WNS is considered one of the deadliest wildlife diseases, having killed over six million North American bats since it was discovered,” said CDFW Wildlife Veterinarian and Epidemiologist Dr. Deana Clifford. “WNS doesn’t affect human health or pets, but the ecological impacts of bat die-offs may indirectly impact agricultural systems through loss of the natural pesticide effect and nutrient cycling of bats.”

As of spring 2019, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife detected white-nose syndrome in bats in Chester, Plumas County.

Californians Can Help By:

Cavers/Spelunkers Can:

Click image to see more Life on the Creek art. Five dollars from every sale goes toward supporting the documentary project.

Resources:

California Department of  Fish and Wildlife – Deadly Bat Fungus Detected in California

Corkys Pest –Bat Identification 

Northern California Bats – Education, Lectures, Rescue & Resources

Sierra Club – A Song of Bats and Fire

Smithsonian Magazine – What is Killing the Bats?

UC, Berkeley – Bats Brains Sync when they Socialize

USGS – What is White-nose Syndrome?

Washington Post – The batty history of bats in the military and why this new idea just might work

White Nose Syndrom Response Team

Wikipedia – Bat

Wikipedia – Maternity colony

Wikipedia – Mexican Free-tail bat

 
 

AUSTIN, TX (May 8, 2019) – Bat Conservation International (BCI) announced today that early signs of the fungus Pseudogymnoascus destructans (Pd) have been detected at one of the world’s premier bat conservation sites, Bracken Cave Preserve.

Owls of Nevada County

On silent wings these nocturnal hunters take prey by surprise. The only time you’ll hear an owl is if it’s hooting – calling to a mate, declaring territory of checking on young.

They range in size from the tiny six-inch Northern Pygmy-Owl to the twenty-six-inch Great Grey Owl.

Inviting them into your space (if you don’t have chickens or other small critters they’d consider eating) is an ideal way to naturally deal with rodents. *See Owl Box construction under Resources.

Great Grey Owl – Photo Credit – Arne List

There are over 200 owl species on Earth. Owls live on almost every continent.
Below is a list of owl species that can be found in Nevada County. (Each listing links to a species detail page.)

Barn Owl
Flammulated Owl (Rare in Nevada County)
Western Screech-Owl
Great Horned Owl
Northern Pygmy-Owl
Barred Owl
Burrowing Owl
California Spotted Owl
Great Gray Owl
Long-eared Owl
Short-eared Owl
Northern Saw-whet Owl

Diet

Burrowing Owl – Photo Credit – Becky Matsubara

  • nocturnal insects
  • beetles
  • crickets
  • grasshoppers
  • small mammals
  • birds, amphibians
  • reptile
  • fish
  • other invertebrates

During the breeding season (March – August), a Barn Owl pair may catch up to seventy pounds of rodents!

Flammulated Owl chick – Photo Credit – Dave Menke, USFWS

 

 

via GIPHY

Habitat

Adaptable to many types of habitats, owls live in forests, meadows, grasslands, in the ground and in man-made structures.

Stealthy Owl Adaptations

An owl’s head is its superpower. It’s designed like a satellite dish funneling sound toward the ears. Owl hearing is ten-times better than humans. 

Its eyes take up a large percentage of its body weight. Owl eyes have specialized rods that help them see in low-light conditions.

Although an owl can’t turn its head in a complete circle, with vertebrae and arteries designed for the motion, they can turn it almost all way backward in either direction.

Barn Owl Beauty Spots

Barn owl females with many spots attract more mates. The spots may represent good health in parasite and disease resistance. They may also inspire males to help more with nesting and feeding owlets.

 

Species Interaction – Spotted Owls breeding with Barred Owls

Resources

 

Audubon – Owling California

Barn Owl Trust- Barn Owl Boxes for Trees

HGTV – How to Attract Owls to Your Yard

Place boxes in trees 10-12 feet from the ground on the property perimeter where leavings will not be a problem.

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The Monterey Regional Waste Management District Barn Owl Project

NPR – Scientists Study Barn Owls to Understand Why People with ADHD Struggle to Focus

“We think we have the beginnings of an answer,” says Shreesh Mysore, an assistant professor who oversees the owl lab at Hopkins. The answer, he says, appears to involve an ancient brain area with special cells that tell us what to ignore.”

Science Daily – Scientists explain how bird can rotate its head without cutting off blood supply to brain

Using Owls to Control Rodents (in Napa Valley)

Wikipedia – True Owl

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2019 Nevada County Holiday Giving-Guide with a Land Stewardship Focus

Support organizations that preserve, protect, clean, heal, and educate about our local habitats.

Buy a holiday gift, spend outdoor quality time with family and friends and keep Nevada County healthy.

Visit the websites of the organizations below to;

  • make a gift for operating expenses in someone’s name
  • buy film festival tickets
  • attend lectures
  • take family and friends hiking
  • volunteer to be a water monitor
  • learn to become a citizen scientist
  • or a California Naturalist
  • buy books to learn to about Nevada County native plants
  • go on field trips
  • learn to propagate and spread native plants

 

Bear Yuba Land Trust 

Bear Yuba Land Trust exists to protect and defend the working and natural lands
of the Bear and Yuba River Watersheds and to enrich the deep community connection with nature, in perpetuity.

Donate/Sponsor/Membership

Events

Trails Portal

Youth Programs

Volunteer

CHIRP – California Heritage: Indigenous Research Project
(Nisenan Tribe)

(CHIRP) was created to research, document, preserve, and protect California Indigenous Nisenan culture.

Donate (also accepts land, automobiles, and stock donations.)

Projects

*see books below for more

Redbud Chapter California Native Plant Society

The Redbud Chapter is dedicated to exploring, educating, researching, and writing about the diversity and beauty of our native flora.

Nevada County Native Plant Books

Fieldtrips

Lectures

Trees and Shrubs $35.95 | Wildflowers $29.95

Sierra Streams Institute 

Sierra Streams Institute’s mission is to link water, science, and people for the benefit of human and environmental health.

Donate

School Field Trips

UC California Naturalist Program

Water Monitoring

Volunteer

$95

 

South Yuba River Citizens League 

SYRCL unites the community to protect and restore the Yuba River watershed.

Donations

2020 Film Festival tickets

Volunteer

River Clean-up

River Monitoring

River Ambassadors

Salmon Expeditions

$20-$500

 

The Sierra Fund (Mercury Cleanup in the Sierra Nevada)

The Sierra Fund’s mission is to restore ecosystem and community resiliency in the Sierra Nevada.

Donate (also accepts bequests, asset donations, & beneficiary naming)

Programs

Services

 

Truckee Donner Land Trust (Tahoe/Donner Land Preservation)

To preserve and protect scenic, historic and recreational lands with high natural resource values in the Truckee Donner region
and manage recreational activities on these lands in a sustainable manner.

Donate

Docent-Led Hikes

Projects

News & Events

 

Yuba Watershed Institute (North San Juan focus)

The Yuba Watershed Institute is a group of citizens who are concerned with the sustainable use of natural resources and the protection of
long-term biological diversity within the Yuba River watershed.  The Institute also serves as an educational
resource, providing an ongoing series of talks, seminars, publications and walks on all aspects of the watershed.

Membership/Donation

Workshops & Field Seminars

Shop  – The Nature of this Place book & Cutting Boards

$20 – $500

Choose an organization to support when you ‘Smile’ shop on Amazon

Amazon Smile Registration

1. Visit AmazonSmile.com

 

2. Select your local organization to support

*Nevada County land steward organizations registered on AmazonSmile as of December 2019

Sierra Streams Institute

South Yuba River Citizens League

The Sierra Fund

Yuba Watershed Institute

 

Nevada County oriented Books & Art
(not associated with a nonprofit)

Books

  • All FORMATS

Ecosystems of California by Harold Mooney and Erika Zavaleta

  • AUDIOBOOKS

Gold Hunters, J.D. Borthwick [Librivox]

  • E-BOOKS

Man and Nature, George Perkins Marsh (Father of Conservation) – 1864 – epub, html, and other formats
The Outcasts of Poker Flat and Other Tales, Bret Harte | for Library Loan
Nevada (City), Grass Valley & Rough & Ready General Directory of Citizens; a historical sketch of Nevada County,  A. A. Sargent, ESQ 1856
Three Years in California, J.D. Borthwick
The Frontier in American History (1920), Frederick J. Turner

  • PRINT BOOKS

After the Gold Rush: Society in Grass Valley and Nevada City, California, 1849-1870, Ralph Mann
Conflict Between the California Indian and White Civilization (1976), Sherburne F. Cook
The Cousin Jacks; the Cornish in America (1969), A.L. Rowse
Crow’s Range: An Environmental History of the Sierra Nevada, by David Beesley [KXJZ, Insight interview 35:46] Gold Rush Stories: 49 Tales of Seekers, Scoundrels, Loss, and Luck, Gary Noy
Hard Rock Epic: Western Miners and the Industrial Revolution, 1860-1910, Mark Wyman
History of Us: Nisenan Tribe of the Nevada City Rancheria, Richard B. Johnson
Jennie Carter, A Black Journalist of the Early West, edited by Eric Gardner
Jews in the California Gold Rush (1994), Robert E. Levinson
Life on the Plains and Among the Diggings (1854), Alonzo Delano
On the Trail to the California Gold Rush (1806-74), Alonzo Delano
The Pioneer Miner and Pack Mule Express, (California Historical Society. Special publication) (1931)
The River: Hiking Trails and History of the South Fork of the Yuba River, Hank Meals
Sierra College Press
Sierra Stories: Tales of Dreamers, Schemers, Bigots, and Rogues, Gary Noy
Tribal Land Conservation, Beth Rose Middleton
Yuba Trails: A Selection of Historic Hiking Trails in the Yuba River Watershed, Hank Meals
Yuba Trails 2: A selection of hiking trails in the Yuba River and neighboring watersheds, Hank Meals

Life on the Creek art series  –  Hundreds of Nevada County designs

Deer Creek & Nevada County Art made-to-order on clothing, housewares, or accessories.
$5 from each sale supports the FDC blog & documentary project.
Once complete, proceeds from art sales will be donated to one or more of the nonprofit organizations listed above!

Jennie Carter’s Thoughts & Words from Nevada City 1867-1874 [video]

Jennie Carter was an articulate social critic who wrote from her home in Nevada City during the mid-1860s through the 1870s.

Excerpts from Jennie Carter’s essays are dramatized in the following historical video short.

 

 

Grass Valley Daily Union, June 9, 1865, | Advertisement for Grass Valley & Nevada City Stage Line mentioning Johnny Royce.

 

If you enjoyed this post check out;


Jennie Carter’s Nevada County Setting 1860s, 2nd Marriage & Obituary
Jennie Carter’s Pre-Civil War, Civil War & Reconstruction-era 1846-1870
Jennie Carter Book Review
Jennie Carter – Filming Behind-the-Scenes & Creative Partners
Nineteenth-Century Creole Snacks & Jennie Carter (Shared Tastes recipe blog)

 

Resources:

Jennie Carter: A Black Journalist of the Early West edited by Eric Gardner, Copyright © 2007 published by University Press of Mississippi

ACLU – Celebrate Women’s Sufferage but Don’t Whitewash the Movement’s Racism

American Historical Association – *LARGE* educator resource list addressing Confederate Monument Debate

BlackPast.org

California Press Foundation Hall of Fame – Philip Alexander Bell, The Elevator (San Francisco) Editor

Media Museum of Northern California – Philip Alexander Bell, The Elevator (San Francisco) Editor

National Geographic TV – America Inside Out with Katie Couric – season one – Confederate statue removal  

The New Republic – California’s Forgotten Confederate History

Wikipedia – Jennie Carter

click image to purchase or view more Life on the Creek art

 

“Let our greatest efforts be made to educate our children, instead of accumulating treasures
for them to squander, after we have passed away.” Semper Fidelis, 1868

 

Jennie Carter’s Nevada County Setting 1860s, 2nd Marriage & Obituary

Jennie and her first husband, Mr. Correll (a Campbellite minister), moved from New Orleans to Grass Valley around 1860.

While Jennie was living in Nevada County, newspaper advertisements promoted

  • rubber clothing
  • the Glenbrook Race Track
  • ice dealers
  • fireproof bricks
  • Grass Valley’s installation of sewer lines
  • Alonzo Delano was selling fire and life insurance, and
  • A.A. Sargent promoted his law practice and was involved with running for office.

Frequent articles complained about the Chinese, Indian, and Negro.

Childhood deaths were frequently published in death notices.

The Many Names of Jennie Carter

A challenge of piecing together details from Jennie’s life is the various names she went by through two marriages and the variety of pen names she used as a writer.

Possible given name

Mary Jane (no known maiden name)

Married Names

Mary Jane Correll | Mrs. Correll
Jennie Carter | Mrs. D.D. Carter

Pen Names

Ann J. Trask
Semper Fidelis

 

Below are samples of newspaper articles that Jennie may have read while she was living in Grass Valley and Nevada City.

 

The Nevada Democrat
Saturday, October 19, 1861

The Nevada Democrat, Saturday, October 19, 1861

 

Grass Valley Daily Union

In the aftermath of the Civil War, much political and public churn was happening.

At one point in Nevada County, it was decided that southern supporters would not be allowed to vote in upcoming elections.

“Elder L. J. Correll” (Jennie’s first husband) is listed in regular advertisements in the Grass Valley Daily Union

The Christian Church the Corrells belonged to was built on “the east side of Church Street,
between Neal and Walsh Streets in 1859 (for $3,000).  It was destroyed by fire in 1869.”
– History of Nevada County 1880

March 14th, 1865 – Mrs. Correll (Jennie) is elected Vice President to the Grass Valley Christian Commission.

Grass Valley Daily Union – March 14, 1865

According to Byrne’s Directory of Grass Valley Township, the Corrells lived on School Street.

 

Also in the March 14th, 1865 Grass Valley Daily Union issue:

What is To Be Done With The Negro?

Our enemies say it will be a woful day for the negros when emancipation is “forced upon them.” Why is it not for the Indians, also? Can we not as safely and judiciously establish Negro Agencies as we can Indian Agencies? Yes, and with vastly more benefit to all concerned, because of the negro’s docility.

Is not the negro as justly entitled to his liberty as the Indian? And are they not as much entitled to our protection as the Indians? Why, then, become alarmed about the fate of the negro? What is the cause of this morbid sympathy? Simply this: to invent some pretext to prey upon the minds of the ignorant and credulous, and prejudice them against the progressive steps taken by our Government to eradicate this war, and secure a more perfect establishment of equal rights to the people who constitute the Government.

What shall be done for the free negroes? We answer let them work and maintain themselves, let them cultivate the rice fields, after the manner prescribed already by Gen. Sherman, and, if necessary, let agencies be established for giving proper direction to their labors.

June 1865

August 1865

 

A newspaper archive search (1965) motivated by a desire to find the cause of death of Jennie’s first husband did not yield definitive results. However; the following article was published on August 16th, the day before his last appearance in the paper. It may never be known if the two are related.

August 16, 1865

August 17th, 1865 is the final newspaper advertisement showing Elder Correll officiating.

Jennie Carter Poem published in The Elevator (1867)

The Lonely Grave

Why did they lay him to rest

Where human feet seldom tread?

Wild flowers bloom over his breast,

Too gaudy, alas, for the dead.

Tall pines sighing over the dust

Of one once loved and caressed.

The wild beasts are treading above

The heart a mother has pressed.

Birds singing and flying around

With notes all attuned for joy.

Little they heed him sleeping here,

Some mother’s own darling boy.

Oh! ’tis a weird lonely spot,

Away from all human strife;

The sleeper he heedeth not,

Nor careth for things of life.

 

August 29, 1866

Jennie’s marriage to Dennis Drummond Carter

 

Eric Gardner, editor of the Jennie Carter book, believes the connection between Jennie and The Elevator (San Francisco) came about through a relationship between Dennis and Phillip Bell, its publisher.
Click here to view Jennie’s work published in The Elevator 1867-1874.

 

Jennie Carter’s headstone in Pine Grove Cemetery, Nevada City

The Daily Transcript (Nevada City)
Friday, August 12, 1881

The Daily Transcript (Nevada City), August 12, 1881

 

“When I die, I hope no one will eulogize me, but simply say Mrs. Trask has gone to sleep. That will be the truth.”
– Jennie Carter writing under the pen name Ann J. Trask, December 1867

 

 

 

click on image to purchase or view more Life on the Creek art

“A good laugh is better than drugs from apothecaries.”  – Jennie Carter, 1867

If you enjoyed this post, check out

Jennie Carter’s Thoughts & Words from Nevada City 1867 – 1874 (video)
Jennie Carter’s Pre-Civil War, Civil War & Reconstruction-era 1846-1870
Jennie Carter Book Review
Jennie Carter – Filming Behind-the-Scenes & Creative Partners
Nineteenth-Century Creole Snacks & Jennie Carter (Shared Tastes recipe blog)

 

Additional Grass Valley Daily Union Articles:

Opposition to 15th Amendment – Grass Valley Union – June 23, 1865

Poor White Trash, Negros & Voting  – Grass Valley Union – August 12, 1865

 

Resources:

American Historical Association – *LARGE* educator resource list addressing Confederate Monument Debate

Jennie Carter: A Black Journalist of the Early West edited by Eric Gardner, Copyright © 2007 published by University Press of Mississippi

National Geographic TV – America Inside Out with Katie Couric – season one – Confederate statue removal

Nevada County Historical Society | African American Pioneers of Nevada County

The New Republic – California’s Forgotten Confederate History

 

 

 

 

 

Jennie Carter Book Review

Jennie Carter was a free black woman who moved from New Orleans to Grass Valley around 1860.

Between 1867 to 1874 she wrote essays, from her Nevada City home, that were published in The Elevator, a San Francisco black newspaper.

When Carter first began writing for The Elevator, her intention was to publish material for young readers. “Children, you hear a great deal said about color by those around you, see attention given white persons by your friends that is wholly unmerited, while those of darker skin are treated with cool neglect. Such are wrong, and that you may avoid like mistakes I write this for you to read. Let your motto be, civility to all, servility to none. Those reminders of bondage we must get out of the way as soon as possible; and while we would treat all with respect, we should not talk about color, light and dark, black and white.”

It wasn’t long before her writing was composed for a general audience. Carter’s essays provide a detailed and lively peek into Nevada County life—after the Civil War—when black men were working to establish voting rights, (white) women’s suffrage was in its infancy, the Central Pacific Railroad was under construction, and resentment against Chinese immigrants was building.

Since Carter wrote under several pen names—Ann J. Trask and Semper Fidelis (Always Faithful)—her body of work was lost until 2007, when a historical researcher discovered their connection and put the pieces together.

“She was a skilled cultural critic and as such her observations about race and racism, discrimination, and a host of social issues have important ramifications for today,” comments Eric Gardner, editor of Jennie Carter, A Black Journalist of the Early West.

The Jennie Carter book should be on recommended reading lists for every nineteenth-century history class in Nevada County (California).

FDC Editor Notes:

I discovered this book in a reference on a Wiki page. Exciting! Connecting with Jennie’s words, I felt a sense of admiration and deep respect for this intelligent, spiritual woman who bravely spoke universal truths that would go unrecognized for at least a century or more.

As I read, my ears were tuned for the echos of Jennie’s voice. When she described drinking water out of Deer Creek, Carter’s inclusion in the Deer Creek Project went from vague imaginings to composing detailed plans for a script, actress, locations, and props. 

Equally engaging are Gardner’s footnotes and commentary. It’s like a book within a book that includes a code-breaker for every reference and antiquated expression. The research, alone, requires its own focused read. 

How fortunate we (as readers and history buffs) are to have this thoughtful and carefully composed work available in one volume!

 

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“Oh, that we might awake to the importance of a thorough, universal education.” – Jennie Carter, 1867

 

To learn more about Jennie Carter, check out these posts;

Jennie Carter’s Thoughts & Words from Nevada City 1867 – 1874 (video)
Jennie Carter’s Nevada County Setting 1860s, 2nd Marriage & Obituary
Jennie Carter’s Pre-Civil War, Civil War & Reconstruction-era 1846-1870
Jennie Carter – Filming Behind-the-Scenes & Creative Partners


Resources:

American Historical Association – *LARGE* educator resource list addressing Confederate Monument Debate

BlackPast.org

New Books in History with Marshall Poe Audio: Interview with author Eric Gardner (20:59)

Jennie Carter: A Black Journalist of the Early West edited by Eric Gardner, Copyright © 2007 published by University Press of Mississippi

The Elevator

 

 

Jennie Carter’s Pre-Civil War, Civil War & Reconstruction-era 1846-1870

Jennie Carter was an esteemed Nevada City essayist who wrote and published articles in a San Francisco newspaper between 1867-1874.

She was a free black woman born in 1830 (or 1831).  *Free people of color first arrived on the North American continent in the French territories and with the Spanish and Portuguese. They were highly educated and successful in business.

To gain a deeper understanding of Jennie’s opinions and writing, it’s important to know where she was living before moving to Nevada County and to understand what might have triggered her relocation.

In Jennie’s lifetime, the following events occurred;

  • 1846 Mexican American War
  • Westward Expansion – Manifest Destiny
  • 1849 California Gold Rush 
  • 1850 Fugitive Slave Laws were passed to provide the return of escaped slaves (a danger for free blacks – they could be captured/kidnapped and entered into slavery)
  • Tensions mount between Northern and Southern states
  • 1860 Abraham Lincoln was elected President of the United States

** Historians suggest this is when Jennie and her first husband, Reverand Correll, a Campbellite minister, relocated to Grass Valley, California from New Orleans, Louisiana. [Jennie married Dennis Carter in Nevada City after Reverand Correll’s death.]

  • January 1861 Louisiana votes to secede from the Union
  • March 1861 Louisiana vows allegiance to the Confederate States of America
  • April 12th, 1861 Civil War begins
  • January 1, 1863, President Lincoln issues the Emancipation Proclamation, declaring “that all persons held as slaves within the rebel states “are, and henceforward shall be free”
  • April 1865 Civil War ends — one week later Abraham Lincoln is assassinated
  • December 1865 Congress ratifies the 13th Amendment to abolish slavery
  • 1867 Congress passes the 14th Amendment granting citizenship and civil liberties to freed slaves
  • 1869 Congress passes the 15th Amendment granting African American men the right to vote
  • 1870 African American men in California gain voting rights when 2/3 of the states ratify the 15th Amendment

Social movements taking place;

  • Abolition (eliminating slavery), temperance (sobriety), and sufferage (voting rights for black men and white women)
  • Human rights and individual betterment 

Prior to Jennie’s move, New Orleans hosted the largest population of free black people in the United States.

Mid-Nineteenth Century American Attitudes

History and Happenings in New Orleans in the early 1860s

 

Reconstruction-era 1865-1877

A time of extraordinary hope and political progress followed by a terrorist backlash.

If you liked this post, learn more about Jennie Carter in these posts;

Jennie Carter’s Thoughts & Words from Nevada City 1867 – 1874 (video)
Jennie Carter’s Nevada County Setting 1860s, 2nd Marriage & Obituary
Jennie Carter Book Review
Jennie Carter – Filming Behind-the-Scenes & Creative Partners
Nineteenth-Century Creole Snacks & Jennie Carter (Shared Tastes recipe blog)

Resources:

American Historical Association – *LARGE* educator resource list addressing Confederate Monument Debate

BlackPast.org

History Channel13th Amendment (1865)

Howard University – Reconstruction-era History 1865-1877

 

Jennie Carter: A Black Journalist of the Early West edited by Eric Gardner, Copyright © 2007 published by University Press of Mississippi

Khan Academy – Start of the Civil War 1844

Louisiana State University – Free People of Color in Louisiana

NPR podcast – Emancipation Proclamation (1862) – what it didn’t do

Project Gutenberg | downloadable public domain books in multiple formats

 

William Edward Burghardt Du Bois (1868-1863) was a Harvard Educated American sociologist, historian, civil rights activist, Pan-Africanist, author, writer and editor. His goal was to put an end to white supremacy.

The Souls of Black Folk 

 

 

Frederick Douglas (1818-1895) was an American social reformer, abolitionist, orator, writer, photographer and statesman.

Books by Frederick Douglas

 

 

Additional Resources:

Sacramento Zouaves on parade in Marysville 1873 mentioned in Jennie’s writing (page 95 – Jennie Carter, A Black Journalist of the Early West)

Clothing Styles 1860-1880s

 

Contemporary Resource:

National Geographic TV – America Inside Out with Katie Couric – season one – Confederate statue removal  

**PBS Four-Part Series – Reconstruction, American After the Civil War | preview

Jennie Carter – Filming Behind-the-Scenes & Creative Partners

“Jennie” drinking water on Deer Creek

While reading Eric Gardner’s book—Jennie Carter: A Black Journalist of the Early Westin the spring of 2019, Deer Creek Project Coordinator, Lisa Redfern day-dreamed about highlighting Jennie Carter in a historical video. Upon reaching Carter’s temperance segment (page 25, 1868) describing drinking water out of Deer Creek, Redfern found the connection she needed to go-for-it.

Video production took the entire summer to execute;

  • pieces of Carter’s writing were selected
  • Katrina Thompson was asked to portray and voice act for Jennie Carter’s part
  • filming location permission, costumes, and props were secured
  • scene planning was mapped and detailed
  • a delightful evening was spent at Randco Studios recording Jennie’s writing
  • filming took place on one long day (July 5th) starting early in Colfax and following the light to the Pine Grove Cemetery in Nevada City


Locations:

Filming day started early in Colfax

Jennie Carter’s headstone in Pine Grove Cemetery, Nevada City

Costuming from Solstice Vintage Clothing, Nevada City

“Jennie” extolling the world of letters and reading

 

_________

Many thanks to…

Voice Acting & Jennie Carter Portrayal

Katrina Thompson | (916) 218-8198


Audio Recording & Sound Design

Randy Landenberger, Randco Studios, Grass Valley, CA | randylscott@randco.me


Research

Tracey Lilyquist, Librarian, Doris Foley Historical Library

The Jennie Carter production would not have been as wonderful without them!

_________

Video Editing

Initially, the Jennie Carter material was envisioned as five short videos. Each segment — four minutes in length — took a full week to compile and edit.

Every square or rectangle in the video above represents an image, a sound effect, video clip, or text file.

Once the segments were proofed, it was decided that they would show better as one piece.

Director & Video Production

Lisa Redfern and Katrina Thompson on Deer Creek at the end of filming day.

Lisa Redfern
Redfern Studio
Little Mountain Publishing
(530) 559-4367 

 

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“Lost, one golden hour with sixty diamond minutes. No reward, for they can never be found.” Horace Mann, 1856

If you liked this post, check out;

Jennie Carter’s Thoughts & Words from Nevada City 1867 – 1874 (video)
Jennie Carter’s Nevada County Setting 1860s, 2nd Marriage & Obituary
Jennie Carter’s Pre-Civil War, Civil War & Reconstruction-era 1846-1870
Jennie Carter Book Review
Nineteenth-Century Creole Snacks & Jennie Carter (Shared Tastes recipe blog)

 

 

For more behind-the-scenes imagery, visit Following Deer Creek on Instagram.

 

Jennie Carter: A Black Journalist of the Early West edited by Eric Gardner, Copyright © 2007 published by University Press of Mississippi

Crayfish – Aquatic Groundskeepers

Young crayfish on Deer Creek, August 2019

Crayfish are freshwater crustaceans related to shrimp, lobster, and crabs. They’re all decapods—having ten legs.

Fossil records show crayfish have been in North America for millions of years.

According to the U.S. Geological Survey, the native range for the Signal crayfish (Pacifastacus leniusculus) is the Columbia River’s lower estuary. The range goes northwest and through tributaries that reach into British Columbia, Washington, Idaho, and Oregon.

Historical records say crayfish were first introduced to the Truckee River and Lake Tahoe sometime between 1895 and 1909. They were placed there for fish food, bait, and human consumption. Crayfish are currently planted in ponds and on fish farms to control aquatic weeds.

Habitat:

Crayfish live in a variety of freshwater environments from backwater pools to large rivers, streams. and subalpine lakes. Favorite places include hiding among rocks and in stands of partially submerged plants.  They are temperature and pH-sensitive.

Diet:

Anything and everything…

  • rotting leaves and twigs
  • animals and insects (younger crayfish are most attracted to these)
  • dead fish
  • live plants and algae (older crayfish are most attracted to these)
  • other crayfish (large crayfish are most likely to cannibalize other crayfish)

Behavior:

Crayfish breathe through gills. They can survive on land as long as gills remain moist. In water, gills also collect small food particles.

Most activity and feeding occurs at night.

Crayfish have two sets of antennae, one set for touch and the other for smell.

Defense:

Body armor—or the exoskeleton—is a crayfish’s main defense, though pincers are also used for battle.

The exoskeleton is made up of calcium carbonate (limestone), taken from the water. It builds up in layers. When the animal grows, it sheds its exoskeleton. At this time, it is at its most vulnerable until the new exoskeleton hardens.

Molting occurs most often as young grow to adulthood. Once crayfish are fully grown molting only happens a few times per year.

Crayfish have the ability to regrow claws if they are lost. Claws are also used for eating and mating.

Breeding:

Photo Credit: David Perez

Depending on food availability and water temperature, breeding can begin between three to six months of age. Mating usually occurs in the spring and summer months.

Mothers can hold sperm until conditions for egg-laying are right, usually in fall.

Females lay somewhere between 200 – 400 eggs. These are attached to her swimmerets under her tail. Young remain with their mother through several molts. As they grow, they separate somewhat, staying attached by thread-like tethers. Once fully separated, the mother secretes a pheromone that keeps the young close for protection.

Lifespan:

Average is about 3 years. In captivity, some have lived up to twenty years.

Predators:

Photo credit: Andrea Westmorland

Anything living in or near the water.

  • fish
  • birds
  • turtles
  • otters
  • raccoons
  • bullfrogs
  • coyote
  • humans

Crayfish Consumption in the West:

Washington, Oregon, and the Sacramento Delta are the main crayfish food consuming areas on the west coast. According to the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, over ten-thousand pounds of Signal Crayfish were taken out of the Sacramento Delta in 2018.

Dangers to Crayfish:

  • pollution
  • fertilizers
  • pesticides
  • oil or fuel
  • dams
  • changing land use activities that alter water flows
  • silt loads

Crayfish Species Where They Don’t Belong (Shipping Crayfish to Classrooms):

Carriers of a Plague Organism:

According to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, “crayfish plague, caused by the fungus-like organism Aphanomyces astaci Schikora, is listed in the top 100 of the “World’s Worst” invaders by the International Union for Conservation of Nature.”

Like the Asian Ladybug, Signal crayfish can live in a balanced host-parasitic relationship. If they are brought into places where that balance hasn’t been established, ecosystem havoc can result.

California Department of Fish and Wildlife Recommends Eating Some Invasive Species

 

To catch crayfish you’ll need;

 

 

Invasive Eats (California Specific)| Eat the Invaders | Invasivore

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If you enjoyed this post, check out Invasive Species Choke Natives & California’s Floristic Provence.

Resources:

California Department of Fish and Wildlife – California Invasive Species Action Week

click on image to open the newsletter

National Park Service – The impact of introduced crayfish on a unique population of salamander in Crater Lake, Oregon 

USGS – Pacifastacus leniusculus (Signal Crayfish) fact sheet


Wikipedia  – Pacifastacus fortis. California’s only native crayfish.