A Sense of Time ...


Arroyo Hondo

Lepidopterists over the age of twelve seldom outright chase a butterfly. Far more time is spent watching than catching, a careful stalk providing close-ups of this now-you-see-it, now-you-don’t kind of prey.
(Robert Michael Pyle)

What is lore? Dictionary definitions include reference to knowledge gained through tradition or anecdote, or learning which is not derived from a regular course of instruction, but from nature or family. Early peoples for example passed on plant and animal lore through legend.

Lore is a sculpture made by the hands of many generations. In time, exact dates and details might become less important than message and value. As we explore a taste of our bioregion’s lore it does at times feel like Pyle’s butterfly stalk, a now-you-see-it, now-you-don’t kind of activity.

Lore provides insight and understanding into the places that people from different cultures and backgrounds call home. In the context of 'way of life' and 'connections to the landscape,' read more about the various historic periods in the links at right, or use the information in these links to support a unit study that explores connections to the land. Themes covered include: Tomol Canoes, Stage Coaches and Trains; Hunting, Trading and Language; Viticulture and Vaqueros; Bits, Bridles and Riatas.

Links to the Past

Otters, Oil & Oaks
Environmental history discussion themes.

Otters: Learn how Aleuts were brought from Alaska by the Russians to hunt otter in Chumash waters, during the Spanish period. Luxurious pelts worth more than gold ... it was the Fur Rush!

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The world's first drilling platforms, Chumash and Spanish used the tar long before this, and a big spill in 1969 contributed to landmark environmental legislation aftewards. Did you know that many organisms have adapted to live in or near natural seeps? How does one balance it all?

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An intricate part of Chumash culture, padres hung mission bells in them, and they gave shade to vaqueros. A living ecosystem, one tree produces a ton of acorns in a year. Impacted by agriculture and development, learn how to protect them. Is it as
easy as planting an acorn?

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