HARRIETSTOWN, NY — The Adirondack Land trust is inviting input from community members to help plan for the use and enjoyment of its Glenview Preserve in Harrietstown. This 238-acre property, off State Route 86, is being maintained as a scenic vista and managed for pollinator and wildlife habitat, water quality protection, and maple syrup production. The land trust is working with Saratoga Associates to explore expanding the property’s management plan to include public access.
DEC: Deer & moose more active during breeding season, keep watchful eye on roadways
Deer and moose are on the move. During the months of October, November, and December—breeding season for deer and moose—they become more active and are more likely to enter public roadways. Two-thirds of crashes between deer and vehicles occur during this three-month span. Motorists should also be alert for moose on roadways in the Adirondacks and surrounding areas this time of year.
No Kidding, an Echidna
While I usually cover flora and fauna relevant to the US Northeast and southeastern Canada, every so often, a non-regional subject whispers to me that it’s endlessly captivating and deserves an essay. Eventually I comply to make the whispering stop. Please don’t tell my shrink about this. One time, I was forced to write about platypuses (compelled by platypuses, not editors). These things are proof that animals are not the result of evolution; no, they came from Ikea. Ma Nature went to Ikea for her animals, and after assembling them, a little pile of fasteners and animal parts were left on the workbench.
Cross Pollinating Success at the Lake Flower Boat Launch
The Lake Flower boat launch waterfront is abloom with pollinator-friendly plants. A successful public-private partnership between New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC) and AdkAction transformed the waterfront from a suburban lawn into a necklace of various native shrubs, trees, and many pollinator plants.
Historically, the boat launch site featured a manicured grass lawn stretching from the parking lot down to the water’s edge. This lawn allowed constant erosion which washed sediment into the lake. Nitrogen-rich grass clippings also blew into the lake along with other sources of pollution from adjacent lawns and parking areas.
Invasive Species at Our Door: Adirondack Invasive Species Summit set for Oct. 19
BLUE MOUNTAIN LAKE—A summit to address two invasive species that are a threat to the Adirondacks will include a discussion on new research that shows a link between hydrilla and the death of eagles in the Southeastern United States. The Adirondack Park Invasive Plant Program will host a free symposium, “Invasive Species at our Door: Adirondack Invasive Species Summit,” from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 19 at Adirondack Experience, the Museum on Blue Mountain Lake. The event will cover two species that could dramatically impact Adirondack forests and freshwater ecosystems: hemlock woolly adelgid (HWA), a forest pest, and hydrilla, an aquatic invasive plant.
Trout tails: In search of native strains
When the volunteers of Trout Power get together for a fishing weekend, they are more interested in a small clip of fish fin than a trophy specimen. They aren’t looking for the biggest or most beautiful trout.
They are looking for genetic information, and they have found it. The nonprofit organization is working with genetics researchers to expand our understanding of native trout strains scattered throughout the park. The strains show minimal mixing with stocked trout and have survived centuries of threats like acid rain and game fishing. The genetic diversity the anglers and researchers are finding, more robust than previously understood, may be a key weapon against the growing threat of climate change, which could warm water temperatures to level uninhabitable for cold-water fish like brook trout.
Hurricane Ian hits Sanibel Island, another successful French Louie Fishing Derby in the books
Hurricane Ian has been the big news this week as it hit the west coast of Florida as a category four hurricane, just a couple miles an hour short of being a [category] five right at Fort Myers after passing over Sanibel Island. This island has been our winter getaway for over twenty years now during mud season, the month of April. That is when many of the birds that go south to South America (and some of the islands south of there) return north, and make Sanibel their stopover place after crossing the Gulf of Mexico.
It will not be our getaway this spring as it was hit extremely hard during the storm and the bridge going there from Fort Meyers was washed through in several places, making it impossible to drive there. Much of the power and water systems were also damaged. The condominium that we stay in at Sandalfoot on East Gulf Drive had the roof taken off, as did part of the back unit there. I’m sure the front units had water go right through them with a twelve-to-fifteen-foot tidal surge that went over the entire island.
Fall bird migration is underway
Fall migration is an exciting time for birding. With migrants on the move your favorite birding site can change within a few days, with different species traveling in and out. Every spring and fall, thousands of raptors migrate, and birders may see or hear eagles, kestrels, Sharp-shinned Hawks, Ospreys, Broad-winged Hawks, and Peregrine Falcons among others. The NYS Birding Trail highlights several hawk watches including Bear Mountain Hawk Watch at Bear Mountain State Park, Hook Mountain Hawk Watch, and Mount Peter Hawkwatch Trailway, all within the Hudson Valley segment of the trail.
It’s also important for everyone to turn off the lights for birds at night. DEC launched the ‘Lights Out’ initiative aimed at keeping non-essential outdoor lighting from affecting the ability of birds to migrate successfully. Many species of shorebirds and songbirds rely on constellations to help them navigate to and from their summer breeding grounds through the State. Excessive outdoor lighting, especially in adverse weather conditions, can cause these migrating birds to become disoriented, a phenomenon known as fatal light attraction.
While you observe all the birds migrating this fall, finish your 2022 I Bird NY Challenge offered for beginners in English (PDF) and Spanish (PDF), as well as experienced in both English (PDF) and Spanish (PDF).
Don’t forget to sign up for our Words of a Feather newsletter, a monthly e-newsletter for birding news, updates on the NYS Birding Trail, and upcoming birding events near you.
Land trusts are for the birds
By Derek Rogers
Stewardship Manager, Adirondack Land Trust
The Adirondack Park has long been a popular destination for bird-watching. Rugged yet accessible wildlands offer visitors and residents the chance to observe species that are not commonly found elsewhere in New York State.
From the highest peaks to the boreal lowlands and down to the shores of Lake Champlain, the mosaic of habitats presents birding opportunities unequaled in the Northeast.
ADK connects kids to nature through Marie L. Haberl School Outreach Program
Lake Placid, NY —ADK (Adirondack Mountain Club) has started its 19th year of connecting kids to nature through Marie L. Haberl School Outreach Program: Three Seasons at Heart Lake. Last week, ADK staff began welcoming students to Heart Lake by introducing them to the wonders and science of fall foliage on a hike up Mt. Jo.
Since the program was founded in 2003, ADK has partnered with elementary schools around the Adirondack Park, many of which represent underserved communities, and served over 4,000 students. This year’s cohort includes 12 schools and 355 students.
DEC Recreation Highlight: Sharing Trails with Hunters & Trappers
Hunting and trapping seasons are beginning to open throughout New York State. These activities are enjoyed by many as forms of recreation and a means of providing for their families. These activities can also benefit forest ecosystems by helping maintain healthy animal populations while reducing nuisance wildlife issues and, in some cases, decreasing the transmission of wildlife diseases. Whether you are a hunter, trapper, or just enjoy getting outdoors in the fall, learning how to share public lands with other users will help keep you and fellow visitors safe.
Heating With Wood This Winter
I need to preface this article by assuring readers that, contrary to what many people are saying, New York State is not considering passing legislation that would prohibit burning wood or woody biomass products (pellets, scrap wood, sawmill and forest residues) at this time. There is a draft-plan, however, in which the state Climate Action Council’s advisory panel sets out scenarios for an 85% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, with overall wood use decreasing within that time frame.
Leaf-peeping, fringed gentians, and lobster dinners
The leaves are changing, and may peak this week if they aren’t all put on the ground with the wind and rain. I watched from my window as many leaves fell on the pond most of the day today, September 25. That was better than the snow that fell on Friday morning [September 23]. Some say that Blue Mountain wasn’t blue, but white on top, that morning as were several of the High Peaks. About this time of year, Karen and I go on a leaf-peeping trip through Vermont and New Hampshire into Maine to get a lobster dinner.
Adirondack Loon Celebration set for Oct. 9 at Paul Smith’s VIC
Saranac Lake, NY– The Adirondack Center for Loon Conservation invites one and all to celebrate Common Loons, one of the most fascinating Adirondack icons, at the Paul Smith’s College VIC (8023 NYS Rte. 30) from 1 to 4:30 p.m. on Sunday, October 9. This free, fun-filled day will feature activities for the whole family, including:
1-4:30 pm: Meet the Adirondack Loon Center staff, enjoy delicious food by Adirondack BBQ ($), a silent auction featuring beautiful loon-related items, a scavenger hunt, and children’s crafts.
1:00 pm: Poetry Reading and Book Signing by Yvona Fast, author of Loon Summer
1:15 pm: Loon Calling Contest
2:00 pm: Presentation by Jennifer Denny: A Year in the Life of a Loon
2:30-3:30 pm: Presentation by Dr. Jay Mager: A Light Lesson in Loon Music
3:30-4:30 pm: Music by Sara Milonovich and Greg Anderson
4:30 pm: Hornbeck Canoe raffle drawing
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Congratulations to son, Jason, two-time World Grand Champion in Kuk Sool
The beautiful Hunter’s full moon is bright outside my window tonight [October 9] after a day of wind and rain showers that took lots of leaves off the trees. There was still lots of color in the sunny patches as I drove home from The Adirondack Center for Loon Conservation annual celebration at the Paul Smith’s VIC. Events were held indoors, as it was pouring outside most of the day. Coming home, I hit showers and then sunny patches along the way. I saw lots of shutter bugs out taking advantage of the sunny spots.
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