Wednesday, July 8, 2020

Rangers educate river guides; assist lost and injured hikers

Recent NYS DEC Forest Ranger actions:

Hudson River
Indian Lake
Hamilton County

On Sunday, July 5, two Forest Rangers from Region 5 Zone D, Hamilton County, conducted outreach and education for New York State-licensed rafting guides on the Indian/Hudson River. On this day, 182 customers hired licensed guides to raft them down the Indian and Hudson River Gorge. Rangers inspected 40 licensed guides, educating and assisting them with any violations observed.

Town of Keene
Essex County
Wilderness Rescue:
 On June 30 at 7:48 p.m., DEC’s Ray Brook Dispatch received a call from a hiker reporting that her hiking partner was overdue coming off Lower Wolfjaw Mountain. The hiker had last seen her friend at a junction labeled for Lower Wolfjaw on their descent at approximately 4:45 p.m., when the caller took both of their gear and proceeded ahead to make things easier for her slower companion. Forest Ranger Rob Praczkajlo headed to the security house at the Ausable Club and proceeded to drive down the lake road to the start of the Wedge Brook trail for Upper and Lower Wolfjaw. At 10:05 p.m., Ranger Praczkajlo advised that he was with the 45-year-old hiker from Gloversville. The woman had hiked down the trail and followed Wedge Brook, off trail, down to the Ausable River. A group of hikers found her at the river and assisted her back to the trail where they were met by Ranger Praczkajlo who then escorted her down to the lake road and gave her a courtesy ride to join her friend at the gate house.

» Continue Reading.


Wednesday, July 8, 2020

Join the Invasive Species Mapping Challenge

NY iMapinvasvies is now running their fith annual Invasive Species Mapping Challenge, available to anyone.

The challenge consists of tracking invasive plants and animals across New York State in order to help prevent the spread of these species.

This year’s challenge will focus on the Jumping Worm, the Tree of Heaven, the Water Chestnut, and the European Frogbit. Through July 15, try and find any or all of the four species, report them to the iMap app (available for free) and compete with other seekers on their leaderboards, earning the title of champion in the process. To view more information on the competition and the current leaderboards, check out iMaps website.


Tuesday, July 7, 2020

Love during a pandemic

“The great tragedy of life is not that men perish, but that they cease to love.” — W. Somerset Maugham.

Before antibiotics, one of the most powerful medicines against tuberculosis was love. Happy patients tended to be more successful in overcoming the disease, so health care providers took every step to improve patients’ state of mind. Patients stayed busy with occupational therapy and social activities. Cure porches were oriented toward the best views to boost patients’ spirits with natural beauty. And then there was cousining — a term for informal romances that developed between patients.

» Continue Reading.


Tuesday, July 7, 2020

Watchable Wildlife – 2020 I Bird NY Challenges

DEC recently kicked off the 2020 “I BIRD NY” challenges for beginner and experienced birders. The I BIRD NY program was launched in 2017 to build on the State’s efforts to increase access to New York’s vast natural resources and promote low-cost opportunities to explore the great outdoors and connect with nature.

Birdwatching is one of the fastest growing outdoor recreational activities in the U.S. Backyard birding, or watching birds around the home, is the most common way people engage in birding. New York State is home to a wide range of habitats that support more than 450 different bird species throughout the year. There are also 59 designated Bird Conservation Areas to safeguard and enhance bird populations and habitats on State lands and waters across New York. Check the map to find the bird conservation areas in your region. The State’s I Bird NY program provides resources for New Yorkers who want to get outdoors and engage in birding all year long. People from all economic backgrounds experience the joy of birdwatching. While binoculars can help, you can enjoy birds without any special equipment.


Tuesday, July 7, 2020

Increased Bear Activity in Adirondack High Peaks

Sunday, July 5, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) temporarily closed campsites and lean-tos in the Lake Colden area in the Adirondack High Peaks, Essex County, after a recent increase in bear activity. The sites are now reopen. Campers in other areas of the Eastern High Peaks are encouraged to follow DEC guidance for dealing with nuisance bears. Minimizing human-bear interactions can be accomplished through a few simple steps. Adirondack Explorer editor Brandon Loomis was backpacking over the weekend and experienced the increased bear activity firsthand. Read about it here (and watch a video): https://www.adirondackexplorer.org/stories/state-captures-bear-that-raided-lake-colden-campsites » Continue Reading.


Tuesday, July 7, 2020

Wild Center set to reopen July 15

The Wild CenterStarting July 15, The Wild Center natural history museum in Tupper Lake will be back in business with a phased reopening.

Starting with the Wild Walk and outdoor experiences, the museum will be implementing a limited capacity along with enhanced operational procedures and cleaning protocols.

To find more information and to reserve a spot visit this link.

To complete the Wild Center’s reopening survey visit this link.

» Continue Reading.


Monday, July 6, 2020

DEC involvement in NYCO Amendment raises questions about public benefit

This is the last article in a 5-part series on possible amendments in 2020 to Article 14, Section 1, of the NYS Constitution, the famed forever wild provision.

This article looks back at the amendment for NYCO Minerals, Inc., in 2013, that authorized exploratory drilling on 200 acres in Lewis Lot 8 in the Forest Preserve in the Jay Mountain Wilderness. This amendment was barely approved, passing by the narrowest margin of any successful Article 14 amendment. The NYCO Amendment was different from all other amendments to Article 14 because it marked the first time that a private corporation used the amendment process to seek and obtain Forest Preserve lands for no other purpose than benefitting its bottom line. Every other amendment had a public benefit and purpose. The NYCO Amendment did not.

» Continue Reading.


Monday, July 6, 2020

Protecting Berry Crops from Fruit Fly Infestation

The spotted wing drosophila (SWD), Drosophila suzukii, is a vinegar or fruit fly native to Southeast Asia. It’s been in Hawaii since the 1980s and was first detected in North America in 2008, in California. In 2010, it was discovered in Florida, the Carolinas, Michigan, and Utah; eventually turning up in NY’s Hudson River Valley in 2011.

Its range now includes the entire continental United States, with the exception of Arizona, Nevada, New Mexico, and South Dakota, as well as several Provinces across Canada (British Columbia, Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, and Prince Edward Island). Its many hosts include raspberries, blueberries, strawberries, grapes, cherries, peaches, plums, and other late-season, soft-flesh fruits.

» Continue Reading.


Monday, July 6, 2020

DEC Launches New Fishing, Hunting, and Trapping Licensing System

lake lilaThe New York State Department of Environmental Conservation has announced their new DEC Automated Licensing System (DECALS).

DECALS is an overwork of the previous licensing system designed to incorporate more user-friendly information to help users locate vendors, receive instant copies of a license, and enter and view harvest information and more.

As the system progresses and new features are added and updated, DECALS will include events calendars with upcoming season dates including youth hunts, clinics, and free fishing days. Full integration with the DEC’s Hunter Education Program which would make it easier to register for courses and automatically update certifications, and auto-renewal options for all annual licenses.

» Continue Reading.


Monday, July 6, 2020

Depot Theatre offers socially distanced kids camps

Depot Theatre in Amtrak train stationThe Depot Theatre is pleased to announce that it has developed an alternate outreach and education program for in-person learning this summer.

The Depot Theatre Academy 2020 outreach and education program, originally set to be held inside the Whallonsburg Grange Hall as in past years, will be held outdoors, under a large, open-sided tent in the one-acre parkland behind Whitcomb’s, the Grange-owned building directly across the street. The dates for the junior program (ages 8-12) are July 13-24, and the senior program (ages 13+) dates are July 27-August 7, 2020.

» Continue Reading.


Sunday, July 5, 2020

This Pollinator Hums but is Not a Bee!

Hummingbirds are some of the most vibrant and aerobatic creatures witnessed here in the Adirondacks.  They are known as hummingbirds because of the humming sound created by their beating wings, which flap at high frequencies audible to humans. They hover in mid-air at wing-flapping rates that vary from around 12 beats per second to an excess of 80 beats per second, the smaller the species the faster the wing flapping.

There are more than 300 species of hummingbirds found exclusively in the Americas from Alaska to Chile and are classified as the smallest bird species. With most of this species measuring 3–5 inches in length and weighing about the same as a penny or .09 oz. The runt of these species is the bee hummingbird that is approximately 2 inches long and weighs less than .07 oz.  

» Continue Reading.


Sunday, July 5, 2020

Report puts focus on Upper Hudson

When people talk about the Hudson River and its problems, my mind immediately goes to the GE cleanup of toxic waste around Fort Edward and Hudson Falls.

There are problems closer to home, though. The river, after all, begins atop Mount Marcy. It flows off as Feldspar Brook and turns into the Opalescent River before becoming the Hudson.

All along the 7.5 million acres that drain into the river before it reaches Troy, the part known as the Upper Hudson, are threats to the river and its natural flow. The lingering effects of acid rain that make fish dangerous to eat. Road salt. Eroding stream banks. The habitat disruption caused by even small dams.

» Continue Reading.


Sunday, July 5, 2020

Solar project to benefit the bees, too

Saranac Lake Community Solar has partnered up with AdkAction to complete a local community solar project which will create 10 acres of pollinator habitat.

These 10 acres will provide a local source of clean energy for the village of Saranac Lake, as well as its surrounding communities. The solar farm will provide homeowners, renters, and businesses solar energy without the cost of equipment, installation and maintenance, and thanks to the support of AdkAction’s pollinator project, this will be the first pollinator-friendly solar farm in the Adirondacks.

 

» Continue Reading.


Sunday, July 5, 2020

Weekly news roundup


Saturday, July 4, 2020

In celebration of camping

About a year ago, I was paddling from Middle Saranac Lake to Lower Saranac Lake with three friends to finish up a week of camping that had taken me to several destinations throughout the Adirondacks.

The final night’s destination was an island at the end of Lower Saranac Lake, which is part of a state campground run by the state Department of Environmental Conservation.

» Continue Reading.



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Support the Adirondack Almanack and the Adirondack Explorer all year long with a monthly gift that fits your budget.