According to the International Energy Agency, global internet usage and time spent online has skyrocketed in recent years, seeing a 40 percent increase in just two months beginning in February 2020. [Read more…] about Tracking Your Internet Carbon Footprint
The history of achieving the 1964 Wilderness Act in the U.S. Congress is commonly seen as an eight-year legislative struggle. The first wilderness bills were introduced in Congress in 1956 — in the House of Representatives by John P. Saylor of Pennsylvania and in the Senate by Hubert H. Humphrey of Minnesota.
The Wilderness Act was signed into law by President Lyndon B. Johnson on September 3rd, 1964. My father, Howard Zahniser, primary author of the Act, had died in May 1964. My mother, Alice, attended the White House signing, and President Johnson gave her a pen he used. Three years later President Johnson sent me a letter telling me I was being drafted for two years of US Army service. [Read more…] about Ed Zahniser On American Wilderness History
On a warm, rainy April night a few years ago, I drove up our muddy, rutted dirt road through the mist, steering around the wood frogs hopping across the road. As I approached the vernal pool, there were more frogs in the road, so I parked to avoid hitting them and walked the rest of the way. [Read more…] about Salamander Mysteries: Complicated Genetics
New Yorkers may be seeing more dead fish in the water this spring than in past years. The winter of 2020-2021 created optimal conditions for winterkills, which usually occur in shallow waterbodies with aquatic plant growth. [Read more…] about Understanding Winter Fish Kills
New research reveals that a recently discovered songbird has traveled a very rare evolutionary path — a finding that challenges the typical model of how new species form. Exploration into the origins of the Iberá Seedeater of southern South America shows that a new lineage need not always arise from genetic mutations accumulated in geographic isolation over millions of years. Instead, the novel mixing and matching of existing genetic traits already found in closely related species can create something new, at a much faster pace. [Read more…] about Study Finds Genetic Shuffling Speeds Up Evolution of New Species
The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has released a draft proposal for public comment that would update regulations governing public use of the State’s vast network of Wildlife Management Areas (WMAs).
New York State has more than 120 WMAs containing nearly 250,000 acres, including 124,000 acres of forests and grasslands and 53,000 acres of wetlands. DEC’s Bureau of Wildlife manages an additional 38,000 acres of land, including Unique Areas and Multiple Use Areas, for a total of approximately 150 areas that thousands of New Yorkers visit and enjoy each year. [Read more…] about NYS Wildlife Management Area Regulation Changes Being Planned
New for 2021, DEC streamlined its annual fishing regulations guide. With few exceptions, contents in the new guide are limited to only a summary of the laws and regulations anglers need to know before hitting the water. [Read more…] about New 2021 Freshwater Fishing Regulations Guide
A genus of microscopic crustaceans, Daphnia are sometimes known as “water fleas,” and their eggs can remain viable for anywhere from several years to a century or more. This trait has earned them a position of prominence in a fascinating new field known as “resurrection ecology,” which aims to shed light on how ecosystems adapt to environmental change. [Read more…] about Daphnia: Microscopic Crustaceans and Resurrection Ecology
On March 15th, NYS State Department of Conservation Forest Rangers in Region 3 assisted the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (USFWS) with a prescribed burn at the Shawangunk Grasslands National Wildlife Refuge.
The Refuge is located in Ulster County, NY, at the site of the former Galeville Military Airport. The airport was decommissioned in 1994 and turned over to the United States Fish and Wildlife Service in 1999.
When my sisters visit from Ireland, I try to play tour guide, but I’m occasionally at a loss for what to do next. During a visit in the late 1990s, my sister Grace said she would love to see a beaver.
At that time, I lived close to a beaver pond and often quietly waited for beaver sightings. Alas, the rodents failed to cooperate for Grace’s visit, although she was able to see their engineering work. I was disappointed for her, but not surprised. Many of my own encounters ended with at most a fleeting glimpse, and a loud slap of a leathery tail on water. [Read more…] about Beavers: Landscape Engineers