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Adirondack Explorer

Saturday, August 17, 2019

The Sceince of Amphibian Regeneration

A few times a year, I bring groups of people into the woods to search for red-backed salamanders in the damp netherworld that is the forest floor. Last spring, it was 8th graders. They did their best to follow the cardinal rule of middle school social interaction – thou shalt not appear “uncool” by expressing interest in anything whatsoever that an adult is asking of you – but the salamanders exposed the chinks in their armor. Crouched low over small wooden boards we’d set out to mimic the rotting logs that red-backeds prefer, the students murmured with excitement. Amidst the >>More


Wednesday, August 14, 2019

North American Invasive Species Conference Set For Saratoga

The 2019 North American Invasive Species Management Association (NAISMA) conference has been set for September 30th through October 3rd, in Saratoga Springs. Conference sessions, presentations, and workshops will bridge the geographic divide between West to East and North to South, connecting terrestrial and aquatic invasive species management, research, policy, and outreach initiatives and opportunities across North America. The full conference schedule and agenda details are available online. Registration is open now. NAISMA is a network of professionals such as land managers, water resource managers, state, regional, and federal agency staff, and nonprofit organizations. NAISMA’s » Continue Reading. View original post.


Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Pool Owners, Others Should Report Invasive Beetles

New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) is encouraging New York pool owners to participate in the Division of Lands and Forests’ annual Asian Longhorned Beetle Swimming Pool Survey during the month of August. This is the time of year when Asian longhorned beetles (ALB) emerge as adults and are most active outside of their host tree. The goal of the survey is to look for and find these exotic, invasive beetles before they can cause serious damage to our forests and street trees. DEC is requesting that people with swimming pools keep an eye out for any » >>More


Sunday, August 11, 2019

Spotties: Sandpipers That Like Lakes

If there’s one place you’d expect to see a sandpiper, it’s on the sand. However, there is one member of this family of shorebirds that prefers streamside to surfside. Almost any time you go for a paddle, you are likely to see small brown birds skimming low across the water with stiff, rapid wingbeats. As they walk along a branch or log, or a muddy stretch of shore, they have a characteristic rear-end bob that never quits. In flight, their calls are an ascending ‘weet-weet-weet.” These little birds are spotted sandpipers, or, as their friends and admirers call them, “spotties.” >>More


Sunday, August 11, 2019

DEC Plans Changes to Deer, Moose Policies

New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has announced that they are proposing several regulatory changes in an effort to protect New York’s wild deer and moose from Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD). CWD is a fatal and untreatable nervous-system disease affects deer, elk, and moose and is believed to be caused by abnormally shaped proteins called prions. CWD prions are shed through saliva, urine, and feces of infected animals. A healthy deer, elk, or moose can pick up the disease by direct contact with the infected animal’s body fluids or by eating contaminated sources of food or water. DEC >>More


Thursday, August 8, 2019

A Renewed Fight to Protect Migratory Birds

During the late 19th and early 20th centuries, the use of feathers in women’s hats was all the rage. To meet fashion industry demand for their elegant plumage, several North American bird species (e.g. egrets, herons) were hunted to near-extinction. To safeguard migrating birds from overhunting and unregulated commercial trade in bird feathers, the Migratory Bird Treaty Act (MBTA) was enacted in 1918. The covenant between the United States and Canada is one of the nation’s oldest conservation laws. Since its passage, the MBTA has been expanded to protect more than 1,000 species of migrating birds (e.g. » Continue Reading. >>More


Thursday, August 8, 2019

Injured Bear Cub Rescued Along Route 3

According to a press release issued by DEC, on July 28th, a motorist called DEC to report that he had struck a bear cub on Route 3 in the town of Franklin. ECO James Cranker reported that he responded and located the cub in a tree alongside the busy highway. The cub seemed dazed and was favoring an injured front leg. ECO Cranker said he followed the bear a short distance into the woods, while being alert for the presence of an adult bear in the vicinity. DEC Wildlife Biologist Jim Sickles and a crew of wildlife technicians arrived and >>More


Saturday, August 3, 2019

The Science of Rainbows

After a passing shower, when the sun comes out again, I often see a rainbow in the east behind my house, arching over the trees on the hilltop. Ancient peoples were awed by these multi-colored arcs in the sky and came up with a variety of explanations. To the Norse, a rainbow was a bridge connecting Earth with the home of the gods that could only be used by warriors killed in battle. In Japan, rainbows were the paths upon which the dead could return to earth. In Hindu mythology, Indra, the god of thunder and war, uses a rainbow >>More


Thursday, August 1, 2019

Viewpoint: Respect Adirondack Wildlife

I have been fortunate to see a moose on four different occasions since I’ve moved to the Adirondacks. I’ve only seen one bald eagle. My family jokes that I’m a bald eagle repellent as they seem to see bald eagles as frequently as I see squirrels.  That said, if my children tell me there is a bald eagle over the nearby river, if possible, I am in my car hoping to catch a glimpse. I’m in awe of the wildlife experiences I have and am grateful for each one. I bring my camera everywhere and certainly appreciate anyone else who >>More


Saturday, July 27, 2019

Burying Beetles: Nature’s Grave Diggers

A regular chore of mine is to dispose of the mice and moles trapped in our home. I place them on a 4 x 5-foot patch of dirt and rock – which I have named the grave site – beside my woodshed. There, they typically disappear overnight, taken, I had assumed, by our resident barred owl, or perhaps a skunk, raccoon, or bobcat. Then one day last July, as I was stacking my wood for the coming winter, I noticed a small black and orange beetle around one of the disposed mice. Fascinated, I watched for over an hour as >>More