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About Me
School
Cornell Univ. (BA Biology 1975); Humboldt State Univ. (graduate coursework in Fisheries, late 1970s).
Work
Fisheries Biologist
Languages
English
Hey, I'm Gary!
Petrolia, California, United States · Member since October 2012

I'm employed as a Fisheries Biologist by the Mattole Restoration Council, a non-profit organization focused on native salmon enhancement and environmental restoration within the 304-square-mile Mattole River watershed located along the "Lost Coast" of north-coastal California (you can do an Internet search for the name of my employer for more information about our activities). Since 1980 I have lived and worked in Petrolia, a tiny rural community situated near the mouth of the Mattole River in one of the most seismically active areas of North America. Originally I'm from far-northern New York State, an hour north of Syracuse. A couple years after graduating from Cornell, I took a summer job in May 1977 in Northern California doing stream surveys for the US Forest Service... I fell in love with NorCal and ended up living and working here ever since. A lot of the work I've been involved in for the last 33 years is described in an excellent non-fiction book by my former co-worker Freeman House titled "Totem Salmon: Life Lessons from Another Species," which was published in 1999 and won several literary awards.

I am a single heterosexual man, never married, confirmed bachelor, 60 years old, with no dependents. I love animals, nature and the outdoors -- in fact, my life's profession has been to help nurture and restore natural processes that are necessary for wild salmon and other native fauna and flora to flourish. My nickname, "Gary Fish," is derived from the focal species of my life's work. Outside of work, I'm an avid music fan and enjoy attending live-music events in the genres of progressive rock, jazz, bluegrass, blues, funk... and basically any musical endeavor involving large amounts of improvisation. I also greatly enjoy sports, although at this stage of my life I'm pretty much an athletic supporter rather than an athlete, for sure. I'm probably one of the few people of my age in the United States who hasn't owned a TV for the past 3 decades... but I do confess to enjoying a few select (non-reality-show) programs when TV viewing opportunities avail themselves. Without TV in my life to muddle my mind, I spend a fair amount of time reading (predominantly non-fiction) and on the Internet. I'm not enrolled or involved in any social media, and my cellphone is an ancient flip-phone that's far from "smart."

I enjoy traveling, but not internationally. Most of my travel is confined to the northern two-thirds of California. I drive down to the Bay Area several times a year to visit friends and attend various musical events -- ranging from small intimate gatherings with obscure performers, to large shows or festivals with well-known bands. For the past six years, I've taken annual wintertime vacations to Hawaii (mostly Maui and the Big Island) to briefly escape NorCal winter weather and get an infusion of sun, warmth, snorkeling, humpback whales and sea turtles! Every summer I spend 3 to 4 weeks in northern New York visiting my parents -- who remain healthy and mentally sharp into their 80's, I'm happy to say -- and also to spend time with my two brothers and assorted nephews, nieces, in-laws, extended family, and friends in NY, MA, and CT.

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