Posts Tagged ‘nature’

Friday, September 11, 2020

A cure for an ailing planet: 2nd annual Rewilding anthology

In the midst of the worst pandemic in a century, The Rewilding Institute was at work creating its second annual anthology, which showcases the consequences of an “unwinnable war on nature,” including our encroachment on species-rich habitats, and the exploitation and marketing of wild animals for food and aesthetic items.

Produced by The Rewilding Institute and published by Essex Editions, Rewilding Earth has contributions from conservation and restoration leaders and artists who live all over the globe, but several make their home in the Adirondacks and Champlain Valley, including Bill Amadon, Sheri Amsel, David Crews, John Davis, Steven Kellogg, Jon Leibowitz, Rob Leverett, Larry Master, Patty Meriam, Shelby Perry, Kevin Raines, Sophi Veltrop, and Brendan Wiltse.

» Continue Reading.


Thursday, September 3, 2020

Commentary: The healing power of the forest

Denuding the Adirondack Woods.

There is in the previous sentence a title of a book. There are many reasons why we go into the Wilderness. I go to be away from people and visit my church, if you will excuse the expression.

The natural wonder of nature and of being in a wild place calms my nerves and feeds my soul more than anything else I can do in my day to day life. The Adirondacks feel timeless, and throwback to an early period in American history. Trees, water, rocks, sand, wildlife, all of this profoundly changed during the many periods of ice advancement from Canada almost down to Virginia. Advance and retreat, then repeat and repeat again.

» 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, May 25, 2020

The American Marten in the Adirondacks

Rolling into the summer months, the High Peak wilderness experiences a sharp expansion of its wildlife community.

Insects adapted for survival in an often cool, high-elevation environment emerge from their long winter dormancy and are engaged in eating and breeding. Various species of birds have traveled to our upper elevation slopes to mate and nest, and numerous mammals that reside in this harsh climatic zone are now busy rearing infants which can temporarily double their populations.

One predator that is occasionally seen by people who pass through this region and whose young are currently developing to the stage at which they are leaving their mother’s den for the first time is the American marten (Martes Americana), a creature that symbolizes the great North woods character of the Central Adirondacks. » Continue Reading.


Thursday, April 23, 2020

Reading in Place

Good Books from Wild Places to Help Us Through Bad Times

Entodon cladorrhizans. ©Northern Forest Atlas Foundation

If you must “shelter in place”, the North Country is a good place to do so.  Those of us fortunate to live in New York’s great Adirondack Park are already accustomed to “social distancing”, and generally have ample space to get fresh air and exercise – thanks to the good work of the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation and regional land trusts in protecting millions of acres of wild lands and waters. We are also fortunate to have thousands of brave neighbors continuing to go to work to provide us essentials, like groceries, heating fuel, and health care.

Still, even we lucky Adirondackers – nearly as much as our fellow New Yorkers down-state wishing they could be up here – likely have more time alone now than we usually have.  Quiet time affords us chances to read. Here is a quick list of books of regional interest and/or environmental bent that I’d suggest to neighbors sheltered at home through this upsetting pandemic.

» Continue Reading.


Thursday, April 23, 2020

Quarantine reads: Suggestions from Almanack readers

Anne LaBastille, author of the “Woodswoman” series.

Looking for new ways to pass the time indoors?

Here are some suggestions for Adirondack and/or environmental themed books offered up by Almanack readers, who responded to a post on our Facebook page.

A mix of fiction and non-fiction, old and new (in no particular order), feel free to share your favorites in the comments!

» Continue Reading.


Saturday, March 28, 2020

More About Opposums

North American Opossum with winter coat by Wikimedia user Cody PopeAlthough my Irish-American mother taught me that the prefix O’ (descendent of) was originally part of common Irish surnames such as Kelly, Murphy, Hogan and Kennedy, it would sound odd to my ears were these families to suddenly revert to the Old-World form.

I have the same issue with the distinctly New-World marsupial, the opossum. In the Genesee Valley of New York State where I grew up, these omnipresent critters were known to all as possums, and it still sounds foreign to hear their name pronounced with three syllables. » Continue Reading.


Wednesday, March 25, 2020

White Pine Perils

The tallest trees this side of the Rockies, our eastern white pine (Pinus strobus) is one of the most – if not the most – economically and culturally important species in the Northeast.

Though the current US champion is a North Carolina giant measuring 189 feet tall, early loggers recorded white pines of up to 230 feet. » Continue Reading.


Monday, March 23, 2020

Rethinking the Norway Maple

Norway Maple by Wikimedia user Martin BobkaWhen Norway broke from Sweden in 1905, the newly independent country promised to stay neutral in all international conflicts. However, it has let loose highly successful and prolonged assaults of both the US and Canada on several fronts. To its credit, Norway has managed all this without using the Internet or spending a single krone. » Continue Reading.


Sunday, March 22, 2020

Preparing for Black Bears in Spring

black bearIt’s not too early for New York homeowners to think about bear-proofing their properties. While most of our bears are still in their dens, the mild winter weather has allowed some of them to stay on foot searching for food. » Continue Reading.


Thursday, March 19, 2020

Where Do Snakes Go In Winter?

snakes in winter by adelaide tyrolDuring the summer, I often spy common garter snakes sunning themselves in my garden. As the snow piles up through winter, covering the landscape in cold white, I wonder where these warmth-seeking creatures have gone.

Without fur or fluffed-up feathers for insulation, how do these ectotherms survive the long months between autumn’s fading warmth and spring’s arrival? » Continue Reading.


Thursday, March 12, 2020

Some Declines: Ongoing Adirondack Fisher Research

Fisher provided by DECHarvest data suggests a decline in fisher populations in certain wildlife management units within the Adirondack Park.

To get a better idea of what could be driving these apparent declines, DEC initiated a study on fisher demographic rates in 2019. » Continue Reading.


Wednesday, March 11, 2020

Vermicomposting: Making Black Gold

Vermicomposting uses worms to decompose waste courtesy Wikimedia user ChristopheFinotVermicomposting is the process of using worms to digest food waste to produce a nutrient and microbe rich soil amendment known as vermicompost (vermi – being latin for worm).

This compost is sometimes referred to as “black gold” because when mixed into the soil, it’s extremely valuable to the health and growth of the plants. » Continue Reading.


Tuesday, March 10, 2020

Boxelder: A Tree By Any Other Name

Boxelder leaves and seeds courtesy USDAIf you know someone who goes by a slew of different names, it could be that they want to hide a bad reputation, avoid arrest, or both. In the world of trees, that individual would be the boxelder, a native member of Aceraceae, the maple family.

Boxelder is known by a dozen or more aliases, including Manitoba maple, ash-leaf maple, California maple, maple ash, sugar ash, and river maple. Because it is breakage-prone, grows fast, spreads easily, and can become a nuisance “weed” tree, its name is often preceded by a few choice words not suitable to print.
» Continue Reading.


Thursday, March 5, 2020

A Glimpse of Adirondack Lynx

Canada Lynx by Jacob W Frank National Park ServiceBig cats such as panthers, tigers and lions are often featured in popular media. With their great strength, size, and seemingly endless confidence, these felines command attention. There are other members of the Felidae family however that go more unnoticed.

Bobcats (Lynx rufus), Canada lynx (Lynx canadensis), Eurasian lynx (Lynx lynx), and the Iberian lynx (Lynx pardinus), although dispersed throughout most of the world, appear to share a similar ancestor, Lynx issiodorensis or Issoire lynx, which went extinct more than 12,000 years ago. » Continue Reading.



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