Latest San Francisco Bay Stories

2007-11-08 12:00:00

A cargo ship collision with the Bay Bridge on Wednesday leaked 58,000 gallons of oil into San Francisco Bay, the largest oil spill inside the bay in at least a decade. Throughout the day, U.S. Coast Guard crewsworked to surround the spill with floating boom, removing at least 8,000 gallons with skimmer ships and absorbent pads, said spokesman U.S. Coast Guard Petty Officer 3rd Class Michael Anderson. "The Coast Guard is committed to protecting the environment. We are deploying all available...

2007-11-08 09:00:31

By Paul Rogers Cargill Salt has agreed to pay $228,000 to settle charges that it violated state water pollution laws last year after spilling 218,000 gallons of toxic brine into the marshes along San Francisco Bay near Fremont. The toxic spill, Cargill's sixth in or around the Bay since 1999, killed fish and plants in the Don Edwards San Francisco Bay National Wildlife Refuge. The spill occurred on Aug. 3, 2006. That morning, a Cargill employee began pumping bittern, a byproduct of...

2007-05-31 14:55:00

SAN FRANCISCO -- Scientists observing the wayward wanderings of two humpback whales in a California river have more to celebrate than their return to the Pacific Ocean - the duo provided an unexpected opportunity to study the endangered species. The information scientists gathered includes sound recordings, logs of their behavior and tissue samples from both the mother and calf, which will be analyzed to determine whether they come from a pod of whales that travel between Mexico and...

2007-05-29 10:11:10

BENICIA, Calif. -- Two whales lost in the Sacramento River once again halted near a busy bridge, a day after making considerable progress in their quest to return to the Pacific Ocean. Though they have stopped in a relatively narrow section of the river for the past week, the whales stopped Monday in a much wider waterway teeming with ship traffic. The shift came after an encouraging spurt in which the pair traveled about 24 miles in 24 hours. "Right now they are meandering, but we're hoping...

2007-05-25 09:26:38

RIO VISTA, Calif. -- Unfazed by the sounds of other whales and clanging pipes, two wayward humpbacks will next encounter the spray of fire hoses, which scientists hope will herd them back toward the ocean. The two whales, a mother and her calf, remained in the Sacramento River, some 70 miles from the Pacific, where they've been circling for days. On Friday, biologists planned to spray water near the whales from above and underwater from the deck of a boat on the river. "No one has done this...

2007-05-24 07:00:00

RIO VISTA, Calif. - Scientists hope recordings of orcas attacking a mother whale and her calf will persuade a pair of ailing humpbacks meandering in a freshwater river to head back toward the ocean. The tactic is just the latest that increasingly concerned marine biologists have come up with to coax the two lost, injured whales back to the ocean. They have spent more than a week in freshwater, which they are not physically equipped to inhabit. "I wouldn't say there's a lot of optimism right...

2007-05-23 21:10:00

RIO VISTA, Calif. -- Hope dimmed Wednesday for two lost, wounded whales as scientists spotted the humpbacks wildly slapping their tails on the water in possible distress as they lingered far from their ocean home. Deep cuts on the mother whale and calf, likely caused by a run-in with a boat, were worsening after more than a week in fresh water that the pair are not physically well-equipped to inhabit, biologists said. "I wouldn't say there's a lot of optimism right now," said Brian...

2007-05-23 10:00:00

RIO VISTA, Calif. (AP) - Two wounded, lost whales circled near a Sacramento River bridge as boat crews banged metal pipes to try to herd them toward the open waters of the Pacific Ocean. The whales, lost since more than a week ago, spent a second day Tuesday circling near the bridge about 70 miles from the Pacific. Both whales were apparently wounded during a run-in with a boat's propeller. "The wounds appear to have worsened over time and their skin has changed from smooth and shiny to...

2007-05-22 08:08:30

RIO VISTA, Calif. -- Two wayward whales were swimming in circles near the Rio Vista Bridge, frustrating attempts to get them back to the safety of the Pacific Ocean. "They're wild animals and they're going to do what they want," Coast Guard Petty Officer Brian Leshak said late Monday night. The humpbacks, nicknamed Delta and Dawn, have traveled 90 miles inland toward the state capital since taking a wrong turn more than a week ago. Wildlife officials were hopeful they would return to the open...

2007-05-19 08:39:17

WEST SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- Marine scientists trying to lure two injured whales out of a river prepared Friday for Plan B: Herding the animals by boat while banging pipes underwater. In the meantime, a marine mammal rescue crew aboard a Coast Guard cutter stuck with the original strategy of playing recorded sounds of other humpbacks feeding. The mother whale and calf are stranded at the Port of Sacramento, having hit a dead-end after traveling 90 miles through San Francisco Bay and up the...

Word of the Day
  • Good cheer; viands.
  • To revel; to feast.
The word 'bellycheer' may come from 'belle cheer', "good cheer".