Almanack Contributor Corrina Parnapy

Corrina Parnapy

Corrina Parnapy, an Adirondack native  transplanted to Vermont with her husband and son, is the District Manager for the largest Natural Resources Conservation District in the State of Vermont.  She is the lead Aquatic Biologist/ Phycologist for Avacal Biological, and writes about the natural world for the Adirondack Almanack and other Northeast publications.


Thursday, April 20, 2017

Emerging Concerns Over Banded Mystery Snails

Banded Mystery SnailBanded Mystery SnailThe warming temperatures and receding ice are giving way to open water and increased recreational activities. It is time once again to think about aquatic invasive species. An emerging threat to our fish populations and bird populations is the Banded Mystery Snail.

The Banded Mystery Snail (Viviparus georgianus) a non-native species to the Adirondacks was introduced in 1867 into the Hudson River. It is historically native to Florida and Georgia among other southeastern states. It has been found in many bodies of water located » Continue Reading.


Thursday, January 19, 2017

Road Salt Impacts Waterways, Soils and Infrastructure

Living in the Northeast we depend on clear roads during winter to maintain our way of life. Organizations, agencies and municipalities throughout upstate NY and VT understand that there is an impact to the environment from road salt application practices. We must find the balance that protects the environment and still allows for safe roads.

Road salt (sodium chloride) was first utilized within the U.S. on roads in NH in 1938. By 1941 a total of 5,000 tons of salt were applied to highways nationwide. Today, » Continue Reading.


Thursday, August 11, 2016

Sewage Spills And Algal Blooms

lake champlain no swimming signlake champlain no swimming signEvery year heavy rains in the Northeast cause wastewater treatment plants to reach and exceed capacity, with attendant overflows and sewage spills directly into lakes and rivers. Population growth, aging infrastructure and increased storm intensity are resulting in wastewater treatment plants legally allowing overflow of untreated sewage into waterways. This has included both raw sewage and graywater. Outdated and inadequate infrastructure (both public and private) are lending to the potential increase in toxic algal blooms and pathogens within the waters we drink from and » Continue Reading.


Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Understanding Adirondack Algae Blooms

algal bloomalgal bloomThe increase in temperatures and decreasing water levels in bodies of water are setting the stage for an increase in algal growth within our waterways. Littoral (nearshore) algal blooms are already visible, and Cyanobacteria (blue-green) algal blooms have recently closed down beaches in Lake Champlain.

Algae, the base of the aquatic food web is important to our aquatic ecosystems. They provide food for many organisms and create oxygen and shelter. Algae remove nutrients directly from the water column. If excessive nutrients enter our waterways, the nearshore algae will respond by » Continue Reading.


Saturday, July 23, 2016

Adirondack Trout And Rising Water Temperatures

trouttroutBrook Trout and Lake Trout, coldwater species are found in many lakes, ponds, and streams within the Adirondacks. They require cold, well oxygenated waters that are clean, to survive. With the increasing in overall temperatures, I felt it was time to explore the impact that these rising temperatures would have on our fish populations.


Saturday, April 18, 2015

Adirondack Painted Turtles In Spring

April24 089April24 089After a long slumber buried deep in the protective mud beneath Adirondack lakes, the painted turtle is awake. Chrysemys picta, the eastern painted turtle, is common to many of our ponds, lakes and wetlands, preferring areas with abundant aquatic plants, ample spots for sunbathing, and sunny places with sand for nests.

Painted turtles are named for their intricate shell pattern and very distinct yellow stripes on their heads. Reaching an average length of 5 to 6 inches, they can live for more than 40 years. Being omnivorous, they feed » Continue Reading.


Saturday, April 11, 2015

Chipmunks: Friendly Harbingers of Spring

800px-Tamias_striatus2800px-Tamias_striatus2The friendly harbinger of spring has arrived. Our banded friend the Eastern Chipmunk has been making visits to our bird feeder in Schroon Lake.

Chipmunks can be very social creatures; even those found deep within the woods can still surprise you. Years ago, my husband and I were taking a much needed vacation by camping out at Clear Pond in the Pharoah Lake Wilderness Area. We had the lean to all to ourselves, or so we thought.  


Thursday, April 9, 2015

Spring in the Adirondacks

Loon Lake by Shannon HoulihanLoon Lake by Shannon HoulihanAlthough, we had some snow last night, the temperature is rising in the Adirondacks, the snow is melting, and the sap has been flowing. The natural world around us is starting to wake up; spring is finally on its way.

In Schroon Lake, we have witnessed the increased activity of the wildlife and the beginning of ripening buds on trees. We have been visited by energetic red squirrels, a vole, shrew, and many birds, flocking to our backyard feeder. » Continue Reading.


Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Adirondack Fisheries: Black Crappie

750px-Pomoxis_nigromaculatus1750px-Pomoxis_nigromaculatus1Black Crappie (Pomoxis nigromaculatus), part of the sunfish family, has the same general shape as other sunfish. It is an introduced, non-native species to Lake George, but is an important prey species for largemouth bass and yellow perch. Crappie taste excellent and their aggressiveness allows for a fast and furious fight for anglers.  They are an indicator species meaning they are intolerant of water quality degradation including silt and turbidity, and can only be found in clean waters.  Besides Lake George, they can be found in The » Continue Reading.


Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Making Lake George the Smartest Lake in the World

2013-0627-lakegeorge2013-0627-lakegeorgeThe Jefferson Project at Lake George, a multi-million dollar collaboration between Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, IBM, and The FUND for Lake George, is expected to better our understanding of, and help provide solutions to, the threats to Lake George water quality.

Priority concerns include road salt, storm water runoff, and invasive species.  This three year study, already underway, will build a model for balancing economic growth and environmental protection.


Thursday, September 8, 2011

Adirondack Lamprey: Monsters of the Deep?

Lampreys (petromyzontidae) are native to parts of the Adirondacks. They are among the most primitive fish in the world and can be distinguished from eels by their lack of jaws and paired fins. Most species of Lamprey have a parasitic life stage, where they will attach themselves to other fish like Lake Trout and “rasp” through the skin using their teeth and tongue. Within the Adirondacks three species can be found within Lake Champlain and some of its » Continue Reading.


Thursday, August 18, 2011

Adirondack Fish: American Eel

The mysterious, unique, native populations of the American Eel (Anguilla rostrata) have drastically declined in the Adirondacks from historic populations. Surprisingly, individuals can still be found in tiny creeks buried in gravel and mud or under rocks. It has been recommended that the American eel be placed on the Endangered Species list due to alterations to migration routes and loss of habitat, mainly caused by dams along the migration routes.

American eel’s are elongate and very flexible. » Continue Reading.


Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Something Slimy: Adirondack Algae

Have you ever wondered what that slimy green/ brown stuff covering rocks or floating in the water was? What you were looking at was algae. Algae, like plants, use the sun to make energy (photosynthetic organisms), and are food for a variety of animals including fish, bugs, and birds. Algae differ from plants by not having true roots and leaves.

Also like plants, algae need light and a food source to grow. Algae loves phosphorus and nitrogen that enter the water. If these nutrients enter the water excessively, algae can bloom » Continue Reading.


Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Corrina Parnapy: The Importance of Snow

During this winter, it seems to have been snowing almost every week. Snow is piling up making driving hard and causing roofs to collapse. While the snow may be causing problems for people, it is just what the environment needs. Winters with thick snow packs mean a productive, drought free summer.

Snow falls to the ground, insulating the soil and roots of plants. When the snow melts it sinks into the ground between cracks and crevices of the bedrock replenishing the groundwater supply. The snow-melt will seep into the pore » Continue Reading.


Tuesday, January 25, 2011

The Adirondack Whitefish

Hidden in a very limited number of Adirondack lakes is a jewel of a fish, the Frost Fish. The Frost Fish or Round Whitefish is an endangered species that is only known to exist naturally in approximately seven lakes within the Blue Line. This indicator of clean water is actually a relative of salmon, trout and char. Being of the family Salmonidae, they live in cold, deep lakes with adequate dissolved oxygen.

What makes the Round Whitefish so unique, is that they will spawn in late November, early December over gravel. » Continue Reading.


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