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Adirondack Explorer

Archive for the ‘Natural History’ Category

May, 2019

Pollinator Symposium Set For June


AdkAction’s Adirondack Pollinator Project is set to hold a Pollinator Symposium June 5 at Tannery Pond Community Center in North Creek, on Wednesday, June 5th, from 10 am to 4 pm. The Pollinator Symposium will be aimed at equipping farmers, groundskeepers, public park managers, gardeners, and local government agencies with the knowledge to help preserve and build pollinator populations in the Adirondacks.  The event’s keynote speaker will be author and garden designer Benjamin Vogt. Sarah Foltz Jordan, Senior Pollinator Conservation Specialist from Xerces Society, will present Pollinator Habitat Restoration Using Organic Site Preparation Methods.  Jay Burney, Special Projects Director and >>More


May, 2019

Birding, Banding at Crown Point Historic Site


The Crown Point Bird Banding Association will set up its yearly bird banding station at the Crown Point State Historic Site May 10 through May 25. In its 44th year, the Crown Point banding station returns to record migration data and birdsongs, and the public is invited to observe and learn more 6 am to 6 pm daily. Bird banding is an effort to identify and track different species of migratory birds that pass through the region every year, so as to better collect ecological data and improve conservation efforts.  The public can watch the netting and banding process, learn >>More


May, 2019

Celebrate Spring by Planting Natives for Pollinators


AdkAction’s Adirondack Pollinator Project has announced its second Pollinator Plant Sale. With the assistance of Cook & Gardener Nursery, these native pollinator plants and cultivars have been selected to thrive in the Adirondacks. The plants have been sourced or grown from seed to ensure that they are free of neonicotinoids, a class of systemic insecticide that research shows is a major factor in Colony Collapse Disorder and loss of pollinator biodiversity. Pollinator gardens planted by homeowners provide critical habitat for hummingbirds, butterflies, and bees in the Adirondacks, and native species or close cultivars are the best choice to help native >>More


May, 2019

What Shall We Call This?


Anyone who’s spent time in the woods has seen them, a tree growing on top of a large stone or boulder, with its roots winding down around the stone to find nourishment, finally, in the surrounding earth. The tree could be a yellow birch or a spruce and we see them in many stages of their lives from seedlings growing out of a bed of moss and ferns to very mature trees. They are one of the great curiosities of the woods, often causing one to stop and examine, marveling at » Continue Reading. View original post.


May, 2019

Fish Scales and American Shad


It’s tempting to simply view fish scales as armor, but there’s more to them than that. They provide camouflage; they also play a role in locomotion. For scientists working on the recovery of American Shad in the Connecticut River, scales provide a record of a fish’s life history and a way to measure the success of restoration efforts. American shad is our largest river herring. The males, called bucks, run up to six pounds. The females, or row shad, up to four. Like their cousins alewife and blue-backed herring, shad are anadromous, spending most of the year in the ocean, >>More


May, 2019

A New Tick in Town


Black flies bite, but ticks really suck. Enough complaining – that never helps. After such a long winter, we are all grateful that spring has finally sprung, even though the price of warm weather seems to be the advent of biting insects. Swarms of mosquitoes can drain the fun from an evening on the deck, but a single black-legged or deer tick (Ixodes scapularis) can take the shine off an entire summer if it infects you with Lyme disease and/or another serious illness. As recently as a decade ago in Northern New York it was rare to find a single >>More


May, 2019

Tick-Borne Diseases Are On The Rise


Eighteen years ago, when I moved back to New Hampshire, I rarely came across ticks. The dog didn’t carry them unwittingly into the house, and I could spend the day in the garden or on wooded trails and not see a single, hard-shelled, eight-legged, blood-sucking creepy-crawly. Not so anymore. Now, from the time of snowmelt in the spring to the first crisp snowfall of autumn – and often beyond – we find ticks everywhere: on the dog, crawling up the front door, along kids’ hairlines, on backs or arms or legs, and occasionally (and alarmingly) walking along a couch cushion >>More


April, 2019

Poetry: Tracks


I know these tracks in my tendons. I know this forest. How it pounds into the shale, like a crumbling ravine of snow the color of mink fur. I know this forest. Its wisdom returns to me from vanished glaciers, and I hear the sleep of beasts in tombs of rotting Hemlock. I know that I am not alone, but these embers of tradition cannot be shared. Read More Poems From The Adirondack Almanack HERE. View original post.


April, 2019

Visiting A Floodplain Forest


Visiting a forest along one of our major rivers, such as the Connecticut River, in late spring, is like entering a special world. Big silver maples tower overhead, with arching branches and roots reaching deep underground. Cottonwoods up to five feet in diameter and vase-shaped American elms are scattered about. Scars on the upstream side of some tree trunks bear testament to the chunks of ice that crash through when the river floods every spring. Silt stains on the trunks and dead leaves, trash, and other debris caught in crotches of trees show the height of the floodwaters. Many trees >>More


April, 2019

Can North America’s Favorite Birds Drive Conservation Interest?


Cross-referencing a decade of Google searches and citizen science observations, researchers say they have identified which of 621 North American bird species are currently the most popular and which characteristics of species drive human interest. Study findings have just been published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. In an announcement sent to the press lead author of the study Justin Schuetz said: “Google Trends data describe how often people search for birds and provide a snapshot of public interest in different species. In general, large birds, such as hawks and grouse drew more attention than small birds. >>More