Tuesday, April 12, 2022

APA, Gov. recognize former chief Terry Martino

barbara rice and terry martino

In recognition of Terry Martino’s career as executive director of the Adirondack Park Agency, at her last APA board meeting before retiring, Martino was presented with a citation from Gov. Kathy Hochul, and the board passed the following resolution:

Whereas: On August 12, 2009, the Adirondack Park Agency Board appointed Terry Martino as Executive  Director of the Adirondack Park Agency. For the next twelve and a half years, Executive Director Martino led  the Park Agency with dignity, respect, and fundamental fairness until her retirement on February 22, 2022; and  

Whereas: Terry Martino’s exceptional background was deeply rooted in decades of Adirondack environmental  stewardship and smart growth accomplishments. Prior to her appointment to the Park Agency, she  successfully advocated for the North Country as the Executive Director of the Adirondack North Country  Association; and  

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Monday, April 11, 2022

Adirondack Lake Survey Corp Explores Merger with Ausable River Association

adirondack lake survey merger with Ausable River Association

The governing boards of the Adirondack Lake Survey Corporation and the Ausable River Association have announced plans for a merger. The merger would advance their shared goal of deploying critical field and laboratory science in the Adirondack Park to inform the protection of waterways, lands, and air for the benefit of all stakeholders.

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Monday, April 11, 2022

NYS DEC issues guidance to reduce conflicts with bears

On April 5, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) reminded New Yorkers to take down bird feeders and secure garbage to avoid potential conflicts with black bears.

Bears are emerging from their dens, and now is the time to take steps to reduce potential conflicts throughout the spring and summer. Bird feeders, unsecured garbage, and outdoor pet and livestock feed can attract bears and lead to potential conflicts for homeowners. Repeated access to bird feeders and garbage can make bears bolder, seeking additional sources of human-related foods inside vehicles or buildings, particularly when natural foods are scarce.

Feeding bears intentionally is illegal. Unintentional feeding through bird feeders and unsecured garbage also has consequences for communities and may ultimately be deadly for the bear if the bear becomes a greater threat to people and property after exposure to these sources of food. It is important to properly manage attractants to avoid human-bear conflicts.

The DEC advises everyone residing in or visiting bear country (most of upstate New York) to remove any attractants. People should take down bird feeders and clean up any remaining bird seed now, begin storing garbage inside secure buildings until the morning of collection, and feed pets indoors. By taking these simple steps, New Yorkers can help ensure bears will find food naturally, which protects people, property, and bears.

For more information, please visit DEC’s webpage on reducing human-bear conflicts.

An interview with DEC Wildlife Biologist Jeremy Hurst discussing ways to avoid human-bear conflicts and a video of a bear destroying a bird feeder can be found on the DEC’s website, interview/video coverage courtesy of the NYS DEC.

Photo at top: Black bear in Raquette Lake. Photo by Jeff Nadler, archive photo. 

 

 


Monday, April 11, 2022

Loons cry out

loons on a lake

When I was camping a couple of summers ago at Sampson Lake in West Canada Lake Wilderness, all was silent in the dark night but the unforgettable calls of a pair of a loons.

Even someone with a tin ear for bird calls knew what they were hearing. It felt as if it was just me and the loons on that lake – maybe in the entire world. Visitors and residents of the Adirondacks have experienced that feeling of connectedness since time immemorial.

But just like so many other things, a warming climate presents new threats to the iconic species. The Explorer’s new climate change reporter Cayte Bosler examined how climate change may threaten loons in the coming years. From “molt-migration mismatch” that makes loons vulnerable to getting iced-in to torrential rain increasing lake levels, conservationists are working to respond to a variety of risks.

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Sunday, April 10, 2022

It’s Time To Work Out Cathead Mountain Amendment

Hamilton County has been trying to expand its emergency communications network for years. The county has dead spots for not only cell service but for its emergency communications system too, especially in the southern part of the county. The only viable option for the county, given the widely and most commonly used emergency communications equipment in New York State, is to expand its network of line-of-sight towers powered through utility lines, with emergency backups, and are accessible by motor vehicle for servicing. The south end of Hamilton County has limited police and EMT communications service.

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Sunday, April 10, 2022

Discussion time: Climate coverage

youth climate rally

One of our most talked about contributions in recent weeks is this piece by Paul Hetzler. In it, he writes about climate change and debunking the “CO2 fertilization effect,” which is the idea that more carbon dioxide in the atmosphere can be good for plants.

The post inspired some passions from readers and I’m curious to hear more from you about climate coverage in general. Especially as the Adirondack Explorer (which runs the Adirondack Almanack) has recently hired a climate reporter, Cayte Bosler.

Help us shape our coverage: Tell us the kinds of climate stories you’d like to see next in these pages and in Adirondack Explorer’s magazine.

Some examples to get the ball rolling:

  • How warmer temperatures are affecting lakes and ponds in the Adirondacks.
  • Ways communities are adapting/need to adapt to climate change
  • Changes in species living in the region and how wildlife is impacted.

Photo: Adirondack Youth Climate Summit students hold an ”I Am Pro Snow” rally at Mount Van Hoevenberg in this Adirondack Explorer file photo by Mike Lynch


Sunday, April 10, 2022

Weekly news round up

A collection of interesting reads:

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Saturday, April 9, 2022

Sunshine, sand, and a sunglasses-clad Sheltie on Sanibel Island

I see that some snow is still falling on you folks up north, but it is in the eighties down here on Sanibel Island and the water is also very nice. Just before leaving there was a world of birds still using the feeders and several birds feeding on the carcasses on the dam. The last evening, I had a mature Bald Eagle and immature Bald Eagle feeding right up until dark. The bunch of Slate-colored Juncos that had come out of the woods or moved north were under the feeders right until dark as well.

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Saturday, April 9, 2022

DEC to offer free waterfront lifeguard course April 19-22 in Fulton County

On Wednesday, March 23, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) announced a free waterfront lifeguard course will be offered April 19 through 22 in Gloversville, Fulton County. Individuals looking for seasonal summer employment who enjoy the outdoors are encouraged to learn more about DEC’s summer recreation opportunities.

“Joining the team of lifeguards at DEC campgrounds and day use areas during the summer season offers an excellent opportunity to help visitors safely enjoy the great outdoors in New York’s beautiful Catskill and Adirondack forest preserves,” said DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos. “I encourage all eligible New Yorkers with a passion for nature and an interest in becoming a lifeguard to learn more.”

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Saturday, April 9, 2022

Adirondack Garden Club accepting grant applications

The Adirondack Garden Club is accepting applications for Ellen Lea Paine Memorial Nature Fund grants now through May 15.

Established in 2005, the fund provides financial assistance to individuals and not-for-profit organizations—including schools—involved in programs whose purpose is to study, protect and enjoy the natural environment within the Adirondack Park. The maximum amount per grant is $1,500. For an application, visit adirondackgardenclub.com, write to Liz Jaques, P.O. Box 58, Keene, NY 12942-0058 or email [email protected].

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Friday, April 8, 2022

BETA issues mud season request to riders

mud season

Dear Riders,

No one likes to be told what to do. We get it. But we are urging you to resist riding muddy trails.

We know this topic is controversial and nuanced. This is the Adirondack Mountains – if we didn’t ride when it was wet, we’d NEVER ride, right? Well, kind of, BUT there is a very important distinction that we need to make between the state of the trails now – saturated, soft and delicate, versus the state of the trails in July after a thunderstorm – hardened, stable and tacky. Read a science-y explanation  here: Mud Season Unlike Any & here: Just Say No To Mud

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Friday, April 8, 2022

Outdoor conditions (4/8): Muddy trails but still snowy on mountain tops

outdoor conditions logoThe following are the most recent notices pertaining to public lands in the Adirondacks. Please check the Adirondack Backcountry Information webpages for comprehensive and up-to-date information on seasonal road statuses, rock climbing closures, specific trail conditions, and other pertinent information.

Muddy Trails Advisory: DEC today issued a muddy trail advisory for Adirondack trails, especially those over 2,500 feet in elevation. Please avoid the following high elevation trails until trails conditions have dried and hardened:

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Friday, April 8, 2022

Latest news headlines

Here’s a look at news from around the Adirondacks this week:

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Thursday, April 7, 2022

Adirondack Park within NYS Climate Strategies – Barely Mentioned

adirondacks climate

It is in Chapter 19 of the NYS Climate Action Council’s Draft Scoping Plan, the chapter on “Land Use,” that I expected the words “Adirondack” or “Adirondack Park” or “Adirondack Park Agency” to get some focused attention. I was disappointed to see that the word “Adirondack” is cited in just four places within the 340-page climate scoping report, all perfunctorily.

The Climate Action Scoping Plan is the result of two years of work by the Climate Action Council, established by state law in 2019 to “establishes the path forward for New York to achieve 70% renewable energy by 2030, 100% zero-emission electricity by 2040, a 40% reduction in statewide GHG emissions by 2030, an 85% reduction in statewide GHG emissions by 2050, and net zero emissions statewide by 2050. The paths to 2030 and 2050 require a comprehensive vision and integrated approach to build new programs while significantly expanding existing efforts. Each economic sector discussed in this Plan establishes a vision for 2030 and 2050 in an effort to paint the picture of the future and show the direction the State must head.”

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Thursday, April 7, 2022

How to Scrape Spongy Moth Eggs

spongy mass eggsHave you noticed spongy moth egg masses in your neighborhood? Last year was a boom year for spongy moth (formerly known as gypsy moth) caterpillar populations, especially in Central and Western NY. Egg masses contain 600-700 eggs each and will hatch around May. If you find them now, you can scrape them off trees or buildings and drop them into a container of detergent to prevent the eggs from hatching.

Spongy moths are non-native, but are naturalized, meaning they will always be around in our forests. They tend to spike in numbers roughly every 10-15 years but outbreaks are usually ended by natural causes such as predators and disease. Removing their egg masses is not a cure for spongy moth infestations, but it is a small step you can take to help protect trees in your neighborhood. To learn more about this species and management efforts throughout the year, visit our website.

Pictured: spongy moth egg masses on a tree



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