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Adirondack Explorer

Archive for the ‘Natural History’ Category

September, 2019

It’s Apple Season!


There’s little in life more pleasing than biting into a crisp, juicy, slightly sweet, slightly tart, fresh-off-the-tree apple. And what could be healthier? Apples contain vitamins A and C, antioxidants, potassium, pectin, fiber, and no cholesterol. They can be eaten fresh, baked, or stewed; turned into juice or cider; made into sauce, butter, jelly, vinegar, wine, and delightful confections when coated with candy (sugar syrup), caramel, or toffee and nuts; or cooked into pies, crisps, crumbles, cakes, doughnuts; even meat dishes. New York’s apple harvest is underway. And it’s shaping up to be a good one. Early season varieties are >>More


September, 2019

Color Remote: Adirondack Bushwhacking Photos


Erik Schlimmer’s new book Color Remote: Bushwhacking the Adirondack Mountains (Self Published/Beechwood Books, 2019) looks back at his nearly 1,000 peaks and more than 10,000 miles hiked in the Adirondack Mountains through Schlimmer grew up in Poughkeepsie until 1985, when he was 12 years old.  “At the time,” he says, “moving to the North Country seemed like a very bad idea. I thought I was being dragged to the Tibetan plateau.” He says he took the “when in Rome” approach and did what other kids were doing, including skiing, snowshoeing, fishing, hiking, and camping – all activities he had never >>More


September, 2019

Feeder Canal Alliance Photo Contest


The Feeder Canal Alliance has announced its 2019 Photo Contest, “Picture This,” for amateur and professional photographers. Organizers are seeking photos of landscapes, architecture and nature along the trails and waterways of the Glens Falls Feeder Canal and the Champlain Canal. The deadline for submissions is December 15, 2019. Photos must be submitted in 300 dpi, jpg format to Info@FeederCanal.org and include photographer’s name, address, phone, and location where photos were taken. Photos cannot include people and must have been taken in 2019. Winners will be announced in January 2020. First prize is an a flight over the Adirondacks for >>More


September, 2019

Invasive Species Conference Set For Saratoga


The North American Invasive Species Management Association (NAISMA) is set to host the 2019 Annual Invasive Species Conference together with Cornell University’s New York Invasive Species Research Institute (NYISRI), from Monday, September 30th through Thursday, October 3rd, at the Saratoga Hilton, 534 Broadway, Saratoga Springs.   This year’s invasive species conference will highlight initiatives that connect science to action across geographic, political and public-private boundaries. Presentations, workshops, tours and special symposia will bridge the geographic divide across the continent, connecting terrestrial and aquatic invasive species management, research, policy, outreach initiatives and opportunities across North America. The four-day conference features renowned >>More


September, 2019

Pitcher Plants Turn Food Chain Upside Down


As a kid, I was fascinated and terrified by the idea of carnivorous plants. Growing up in suburban New Jersey, my only exposure to this particular subset of the plant kingdom was the ravenous, larger-than-life Venus fly trap in Little Shop of Horrors. If I stumbled upon a carnivorous plant in real life, I wondered, would it have teeth? If I ventured too close, would it grab on to my finger and never let go? Imagine my disappointment when, years later, I found out that carnivorous plants only eat insects and small invertebrates. The first time I saw one of >>More


September, 2019

Trout Stream Management Meetings Planned


The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) is developing a new plan for inland trout stream management based on updated scientific information and public meetings held across the state in 2017. Prior to completing the draft plan, DEC fisheries managers would like to meet with trout stream anglers to explain the proposed approach, answer questions, and solicit feedback. Ten additional public meetings around the state are scheduled between Oct. 1 and Nov. 12 to facilitate these discussions. The schedule of dates and locations can be found online on DEC’s website. The meetings will feature » Continue Reading. View >>More


September, 2019

Warren Co Master Gardener Training to Start


The Warren County Master Gardener Training Program has announced they are now accepting applications for 2020 training. The program is open to anyone who has an interest in expanding their gardening experience and knowledge. The Master Gardener Training Program provides attendees the opportunity to learn how to improve their gardens and landscapes by sharing information with fellow-Master Gardeners during the training, and following the training, by participating in community-based horticultural programs, educational projects and helping people in the community with their gardening questions. The program includes information provided by the many scientists, educators, and garden experts associated » Continue Reading. >>More


September, 2019

A Good Year For Monarch Butterflies


If you’ve noticed a lot of monarch butterflies (Danaus plexippus) lately, you’re not alone. From my own observations and from what people have been telling me, this summer appears to have been a very successful one for them; at least in this part of the northeast. Monarchs have four life stages; egg, larva (caterpillar), pupa, and adult (butterfly). The caterpillars feed only on milkweed leaves and seed pods. And, for this reason, adult Monarch females lay their eggs only on milkweed. In fact, the search for milkweed is the sole reason for monarch migration; perhaps the most » Continue Reading. >>More


September, 2019

Wet, Wild, and Wonderful Bogs and Fens


“Squish, squash.” I was walking gingerly on a soft, spongy carpet of sphagnum moss in a northern Vermont bog. Magenta blossoms decorated the sheep laurel shrubs that lined the edge of the open wetland – beyond them the pointed spires of balsam fir and black spruce reached towards the sky. Ahead of me, the white tufts at the ends of cotton grass waved in the breeze. I took another step. There was a sucking sound, and a cold, wet feeling as my right foot suddenly sank a couple of feet into the bog. It was challenging to get it out >>More


September, 2019

Near-Term Threats To Forest Health


If you’re tired of hearing about new invasive forest pests, I’m right there with you. Seems they arrive at an ever-increasing pace, and the harm potential ratchets up with each newcomer. At this rate maybe we’ll get a wood-boring beetle whose larvae explode, which would put things in perspective. As distasteful as it is to peer at the cast of ugly new characters, it’s better to know what we’re up against. Novel pests put everyone on a steep learning curve. For the species below, key questions remain unanswered, and some of what we “know” will undoubtedly be proven wrong. Still, >>More