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October 17th (Nature Walk #4) - Plants!!

On this nature walk I ventured to Edmands Park, directly behind (or attached to) the Newton Campus. The weather outside was delightful, with the sun shining and a minor breeze attached to it as it was only 65 degrees outside. I started walking around 4:50 and came across a multitude of different plants. There were different trails that were available to walk around. I walked along one of the longer trails that allowed for me to see different types of plants, including a few traces of poison ivy. Although, most of the plants seemed to be going into their dormant stages. At the end of this walk I was able to find various leaves that had evident distinctions from them and other plants (either small or big).

Posted on October 16, 2019 19:15 by paulehoungbeke paulehoungbeke | 5 observations | 0 comments | Leave a comment
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Nature walk at Holt Hill in Andover Ma: Plants

I went on a nature walk at Holt Hill. This hiking trail is owned by the Trustees of the Reservation, and is beautiful. The trail I took brought me to the top of the hill which overlooks the Boston Skyline. When I went on this walk, it was 68 degrees and sunny, a perfect fall day. There was a lot of plant variety, and I tried to capture that in my observations. Most of the plants I observed were low-hanging, and I found more variety within the shrubs at Holt Hill than the trees. Overall, it was a beautiful walk, and a great way to explore some of the plant variety in Northern Massachusetts.

Posted on October 16, 2019 18:29 by jnatale20 jnatale20 | 7 observations | 0 comments | Leave a comment
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Backyard Bird Count on Saturday, February 15, 2020

Great Backyard Bird Count is a FREE family event at Oliver Nature Park. Join
us to participate in Cornell Lab of Ornithology and the National Audubon
Society Great Backyard Bird Count. Families will count the birds at Oliver
Nature Park to help the citizen‐science project of collecting data on wild
birds. Activities will include games, making bird feeders, and nature walks.

Posted on October 16, 2019 18:10 by cindylcobb5 cindylcobb5 | 0 comments | Leave a comment
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Angola - iNaturalist World Tour

Angola is the 114th stop on the iNaturalist World Tour. The top observer is @rogerioferreira who is a resident of Angola with observations clustered around the capital of Luanda. Other top observers such as @luisquerido, @markuslilje, and @pecardoso also have observations clustered here. Along the southwest coast, @omateus, a paleontology professor, @andrew_hankey, @fmop_lages, @desertnaturalist have clusters of observations. Further inland, @alexanderr and @intotheokavango (associated with National Geographic Okavango expeditions), are clustered. Don't miss this Angolan Central Potto observed by @rogerioferreira that was recently the observation of the day.


the number of observations per month jumped up in 2017 to around 100-200 a month and has been holding more or less steady.


@jakob is the top identifier and leads in birds and mammals. @cabintom leads in insect IDs. @david_goyder who works on tropical African plant diversity at the Royal Botanic Gardens Kew leads in plant IDs. Other top identifiers include @johnnybirder, @ldacosta, and @robert_taylor.


What can we do to get more people in Angola using iNaturalist? Please share your thoughts below or on this forum thread.

@rogerioferreira @omateus @luisquerido @alexanderr @andrew_hankey @jakob @johnnybirder @cabintom @ldacosta @robert_taylor

We’ll be back tomorrow in the Montenegro!

Posted on October 16, 2019 17:42 by loarie loarie | 1 comments | Leave a comment
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Found a deceased coot.

I thought it was a pigeon but the feet were the tell-tale sign it was a coot.

Posted on October 16, 2019 16:11 by mrlascorpio83 mrlascorpio83 | 1 observations | 0 comments | Leave a comment
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Nature walk 10/14/19

I went on a nature walk with my mom and dog around my neighborhood. We walked through the Wissahickon trail and observed many plants. We walked during sunset which I liked because the trees were illuminated by the sunlight. The weather was nice, around 65 degrees. My dog enjoyed getting extended time outside since I usually walk her for shorter than 30 minutes. The plants I observed were fairly common and unsurprising for the area. I appreciate that I am now able to name many of the plants that I see on my neighborhood trail.

Posted on October 16, 2019 13:45 by lambmo lambmo | 5 observations | 0 comments | Leave a comment
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Trial Observations grouped by "sub-zones"

The folowing links are to Search results for Trial observations showing various aspects of Survey, intervention and monitoring in "sub-zones" related to proximity to road and stream. The observations have been sorted from oldest to most recent, and will automatically update as observations are added or amended.

If something looks really surprising - eg wide sunlit spaces - check the age of the observation in the lower right corner of the thumbnail - eg 7m = 7 months, and 21y = 21 years. There are a few historic reference observations mixed in here.




Zone Bd:

KR at Kaipatiki Roadside

KRL just under the roadside canopy where one exists, and down the start of the path leading to Valecrest Place and to the Native Plant Trail

KRS the bank below Kaipatiki Rd from a few metres below the roadside, to a few metres above the streamside

KSS the Kaipatiki Rd streamside

Stream zone: the stream in 2018-2019

WSS the Witheford streamside

WR uphill of the Witheford streamside

Native Plant Trail entry - the path from Kaipatiki Rd downhill to the footbridge, viewed either going down or coming back up.


The Tradescantia of Zone Bd is being documented in selected views of Kaipatiki Rd streamside, or before intervention and during manual control)

and at the Witheford streamside, (or pre-intervention and during manual control).

Some of the Flora and Fauna of Zone Bd

and some of the native plant diversity of the plant communities of Zone Bd




Zone Ca - "Kokopu Pool"

KR at Kaipatiki Roadside

KRL at the bank immediately below Kaipatiki Road

KRS the Kaipatiki Rd bank below the roadside and above the streamside

KRSPF the flora on the Zone Ca side of the path from roadside to footbridge

KSS the Kaipatiki Rd streamside

SS the stream in 2018-2019 (cf in 1997-99)

WSS the Witheford streamside

TWSS the bank above the Witheford streamside

TWSSPF the pathside flora along the downhill, ie nearer the stream, side of the path

TW (Taraire Walk, ie the Native Plant Trail), either going downstream or coming back upstream

TWWRPF the pathside flora along the uphill, ie further above the stream, side of the path

TWWR the bank above the Native Plant Trail (including the waterfall and pool above the post-1997 erosion channel into the stream near the footbridge)

WRSVPP The Zone Ca side of the steps and path up to Valecrest Place


Tradescantia monitoring in Zone Ca

KR the Kaipatiki Rd roadside (or pre-intervention and during manual control).

KRL the bank immediately below the Kaipatiki roadside (or pre-intervention and during manual control).

KRS the the Kaipatiki Rd bank below the roadside and above the streamside (or pre-intervention and during manual control).

KSS the Kaipatiki Rd streamside (or pre-intervention and during manual control).

SS the streambed (or pre-intervention and during manual control).

WSS the Witheford streamside (or pre-intervention and during manual control).

TWSS the bank above the Witheford streamside (or pre-intervention and during manual control).

TW (Taraire Walk, ie the "Native Plant Trail" (or pre-intervention and during manual control).

TWWR the bank above the Native Plant Trail (or pre-intervention and during manual control).


Some of the Flora and Fauna of Zone Ca




Zone Cb:
KR at Kaipatiki Roadside

KRL at the bank immediately below Kaipatiki Road

KRS the Kaipatiki Rd bank below the roadside and above the streamside

KSS the Kaipatiki Rd streamside

SS the stream in 2018-2019 (cf in 1997-99)

WSS the Witheford streamside

TWSS the bank above the Witheford streamside

TWSSPF the pathside flora along the downhill, ie nearer the stream, side of the path

TW (Taraire Walk, ie the Native Plant Trail), either going downstream or coming back upstream

TWWRPF the pathside flora along the uphill, ie further above the stream, side of the path

TWWR the bank above the Native Plant Trail


Tradescantia monitoring in Zone Cb

KR the Kaipatiki Rd roadside (or pre-intervention and during manual control).

KRL the bank immediately below the Kaipatiki roadside (or pre-intervention and during manual control).

KRS the the Kaipatiki Rd bank below the roadside and above the streamside (or pre-intervention and during manual control).

KSS the Kaipatiki Rd streamside (or pre-intervention and during manual control).

SS the streambed (or pre-intervention and during manual control).

WSS the Witheford streamside (or pre-intervention and during manual control).

TWSS the bank above the Witheford streamside (or pre-intervention and during manual control).

TW (Taraire Walk, ie the "Native Plant Trail" (or pre-intervention and during manual control).

TWWR the bank above the Native Plant Trail (or pre-intervention and during manual control).


Some of the Flora and Fauna of Zone Cb


The following links are to locations to which observations will be added over the next two weeks.


Zone Cc:

KR at Kaipatiki Roadside

KRL at the bank immediately below Kaipatiki Road

KRS the Kaipatiki Rd bank below the roadside and above the streamside

KSS the Kaipatiki Rd streamside

SS the stream in 2018-2019 (cf in 1997-99)

WSS the Witheford streamside

TWSS the bank above the Witheford streamside

TWSSPF the pathside flora along the downhill, ie nearer the stream, side of the path

TW (Taraire Walk, ie the Native Plant Trail), either going downstream or coming back upstream

TWWRPF the pathside flora along the uphill, ie further above the stream, side of the path

TWWR the bank above the Native Plant Trail


Tradescantia monitoring in Zone Cc

KR the Kaipatiki Rd roadside (or pre-intervention and during manual control).

KRL the bank immediately below the Kaipatiki roadside (or pre-intervention and during manual control).

KRS the the Kaipatiki Rd bank below the roadside and above the streamside (or pre-intervention and during manual control).

KSS the Kaipatiki Rd streamside (or pre-intervention and during manual control).

SS the streambed (or pre-intervention and during manual control).

WSS the Witheford streamside (or pre-intervention and during manual control).

TWSS the bank above the Witheford streamside (or pre-intervention and during manual control).

TW (Taraire Walk, ie the "Native Plant Trail" (or pre-intervention and during manual control).

TWWR the bank above the Native Plant Trail (or pre-intervention and during manual control).


Some of the Flora and Fauna of Zone Cc




Zone Da:

KR at Kaipatiki Roadside

KRL at the bank immediately below Kaipatiki Road

KRS the Kaipatiki Rd bank below the roadside and above the streamside

KSS the Kaipatiki Rd streamside

SS the stream in 2018-2019 (cf in 1997-99)

WSS the Witheford streamside

TWSS the bank above the Witheford streamside

TWSSPF the pathside flora along the downhill, ie nearer the stream, side of the path

TW (Taraire Walk, ie the Native Plant Trail), either going downstream or coming back upstream

TWWRPF the pathside flora along the uphill, ie further above the stream, side of the path

TWWR the bank above the Native Plant Trail


Tradescantia monitoring in Zone Da

KR the Kaipatiki Rd roadside (or pre-intervention and during manual control).

KRL the bank immediately below the Kaipatiki roadside (or pre-intervention and during manual control).

KRS the the Kaipatiki Rd bank below the roadside and above the streamside (or pre-intervention and during manual control).

KSS the Kaipatiki Rd streamside (or pre-intervention and during manual control).

SS the streambed (or pre-intervention and during manual control).

WSS the Witheford streamside (or pre-intervention and during manual control).

TWSS the bank above the Witheford streamside (or pre-intervention and during manual control).

TW (Taraire Walk, ie the "Native Plant Trail" (or pre-intervention and during manual control).

TWWR the bank above the Native Plant Trail (or pre-intervention and during manual control).


Some of the Flora and Fauna of Zone Da


Posted on October 16, 2019 10:37 by kaipatiki_naturewatch kaipatiki_naturewatch | 0 comments | Leave a comment
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Bioblitz feedback

Hello ZOO101,

Many of you have made valuable contributions to the Makhanda Bioblitz: THANK YOU! Some of the observations have reached Research Quality and made a contribution to biodiversity science in South Africa.

Unfortunately, not everyone has got the hang of what we are doing, and most those contributors have been sent guidance by experts from across the world. Please check your contributions and identifications for feedback, and act on the advice. If you get stuck, consult your demonstrator.

Best wishes,
Martin Villet

Posted on October 16, 2019 08:12 by martin_villet martin_villet | 3 comments | Leave a comment
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Boosting: Continental Mycoblitz 2019

Since it looks like a great event, I'm boosting something I learned about from a post @honeymushroom made on tumblr.

You can find the official page here:

http://mycoflora.org/component/sppagebuilder/64-continental-mycoblitz-2019

Welcome to the first online, continental-scale mushroom foray to take place on Planet Earth! It is part of our efforts to document all of the macrofungi that exist in North America. Funded partly by the National Geographic Society, the Continental Mycoblitz, Part 2 will be conducted from October 20-27, 2019. To participate just review the online training, post your observations to the iNaturalist project during the foray week, and submit your ten most interesting collections to our processing facility. Over 2,000 specimens from the event will be selected for DNA sequencing. Your most interesting finds can help us to understand the mushrooms of North America. We look forward to discovering fungi with you!


What is a mycoblitz?




You may have heard of a "bioblitz" - an intense, and usually time limited survey of all of the organisms living in a given geographic area. A mycoblitz is a similar survey, but with the focus solely on fungi. Participants work to catalog as many species as they can from the survey area, during the survey time period.


Bringing in 2,000+ new sequenced specimens (and counting....)




With the help of the foray partners, this event will bring over 2,000 new specimens - all DNA "barcoded" - into professional herbaria. You and your organization can contribute by taking an active role in reviewing local specimens and/or contributing funds to DNA sequence more specimens from your particular region, or of your particular taxonomic group of interest.


Overview of the Process




The 2019 Continental Mycoblitz is open to anyone who is willing to make scientifically valuable collections of mushrooms - including photography, field notes, and submitting a dried specimen. Any individual or organization can submit up to 10 of their most unique/interesting/exciting collections from the foray week to the project. Mycologists and foray partners will examine each collection and will perform DNA sequencing on 2,000 of the specimens that are submitted. The best collections will have geotagged color photographs of the mushroom from multiple angles, a completed field data slip, and properly dried mushrooms. You have the chance to make a significant contribution to our knowledge of fungi from North America by submitting specimens to this project!


How to Participate






Before Foray Week




1. Review the online training documents - Become familiar with the process to submit collections to this project: Collecting Mushrooms for Science and iNaturalist Mycoblitz Protocols.


2. Download Field Data Slips - Download your field data slips online. These field data slips are individually numbered and should be filled out for each collection you make.


3. Download the iNaturalist Mobile App - Both Android and IOS versions are available. Check your preferred app store for the download. If you do not have a mobile device, you can participate by utilizing the web interface to report your observations.


4. Join the "Continental Mycoblitz 2019" project in iNaturalist - You can join from the mobile app or now from your favorite web browser. You can join this project at any time.


During Foray Week




1. Create new observations of mushrooms you encounter. This can be done through the iNaturalist mobile app in the field (with cell service) or the web interface at home. With each new observation, be sure to select the project for your event and whether you collected the specimen. The mobile app uploads the photos to the reports online.

Take multiple photos of the mushrooms with your cell phone or camera in the field. Your photos are most valuable to science if they include GPS location data: make sure it is turned on! Take a nice image near ground level from the side, as well as an image of the top, the stem, and the spore bearing surface (gills or pores on the underside of the cap).

If you think you might submit the specimen, take an image of a field data slip with the specimen. This will help to ensure you can associate the images with the correct specimens.

Enter the field data slip number into the "Voucher number(s)" field in the mobile app.


2. Collect the specimen. Store your field slip (or the portion with the number) with the specimen.

Back at home, dry the specimens with a dehydrator or fan - Use the duplicate number at the bottom portion of the voucher slip to organize collections as they are being dried. Once they are cracker dry (usually 1-2 days) put the voucher slip and the specimen in a ziplock bag. Please put the iNaturalist number (in the URL of your observations) and the species name on the voucher slips. This will save us a huge amount of time once we receive the collections

3. Mail in your dried specimens - Mail your top ten specimens to our processing facility. The top specimens that are selected as a part of this event will have their DNA "sequenced" or examined. We are likely to find multiple species that are new to science during this event. Your collections could be part of this.

4. As a reminder, we are looking for:

Specimens with complete metadata - color images from multiple angles (including the spore bearing surface), a filled out field data slip, and fully dried specimens.

Locally uncommon, rare, or otherwise interesting species.

Try to make a few of your specimens from one of the following groups for this event: Cortinarius, Inocybe, Amanita sect. Vaginatae, and/or the Marasmiaceae.

Frequently Asked Questions




1. How are determinations made about which mushrooms are selected for sequencing?

There are three primary factors that will influence whether a specimen is selected for sequencing or not. The first is that the metadata is complete for the specimen and the quality of that data is high (geotagged color images from multiple angles, completely filled out field data slip, properly dried specimens, and the specimens are well organized). Secondly, we are looking for specimens from specific taxonomic groups and geographical regions that are undersampled. (An uncommon species from North Dakota is more likely to be sequenced than the same uncommon species from Colorado. We will also have a bias to specimens of Cortinarius, Inocybe, Amanita sect. Vaginatae, and the Marasmiaceae for this event. Roughly 20-30% of the specimens will come from these groups.) Finally, the overall interest of the particular species at a specific location by our partner mycologists will produce the final determination. The more uncommon/interesting a particular species is, the higher the chance it will be sequenced.


2. Do I have to send 10 specimens in order to participate?

No. Even if you only want to take images and do not want to submit specimens, the observations you provide to the project can still be extremely valuable. Observational data helps us better understand the range and seasonality of even common species. You can also send less than 10 specimens to the event. For each person that submits 10 specimens, we will guarantee that at least one of your specimens are selected for sequencing.


3. Do I have to fill out a data slip for each mushroom I see?

No, only for specimens you are collecting. If you are simply taking an image of a mushroom to document the species at a particular location, you do not need to fill out a field data slip for it. We do not need 100 collections of Turkey Tails (Trametes versicolor) or Dryad's Saddle (Polyporus squamosus). If you know the mushroom is common, a picture will suffice. Just be sure to take nice, close images from several angles. No need to collect it. But many mushrooms cannot be identified from a picture alone. We also cannot get DNA results from pictures. Saving interesting specimens allows us the potential to study them further.


4. Should I collect a mushroom if I cannot identify it?

Yes! Unidentified mushrooms are often the most interesting ones. Just call it "Fungi" on the iNaturalist observation and someone will come along and identify it for you.


5. What if a mushroom is very large. Do I have to collect the whole thing?

No, just collect a small portion, such as 1/4 of the cap. The best part to save is the top part with the gills/pores, as well as a cross-section of the stem.


6. Do I need the field data slips in order to participate?

Yes, mushrooms will only be accepted at the processing facility if they have a mycoflora number from the field data slip that is associated with an iNaturalist observation. Standard NAMP field slips are also ok to use if you have them.


7. What if I run out of field data slips?

You can download more slips online at any time.


8. What do I need to fill out on each field data slip?

The requested minimum information to fill out is the date, your name as the collector (you can use initials), the site name, and ecological information (substrate, habitat, etc.). The field for Foray ID is not being used for this event. The more information you are willing to save, the more valuable the report/specimen will be for science. Once your specimens are dry, please put the iNaturalist number for each collection on your voucher slips.


9. Do I need to smell and taste each mushroom?

No, but this information is important for certain groups of mushrooms. These sections of the field data slip are optional, but encouraged. Also keep in mind that taste does not equal swallow. You can taste any mushroom without fear. Just gently chew a small bit of the mushroom and let it sit on your tongue for a few seconds to see if any specific taste starts to develop. Then spit the flesh out.


10. What are the numbers on the bottom of the field data slip for?

The "Voucher Label for Drying" can be torn off and stored in your tackle box or basket with the specimen. This will allow you to keep the specimens organized with the pictures you take (be sure to take a picture of the field data slip with each specimen for the number and the scale bar on the side of the slip). The "Tissue Label" is not something we will be using as a part of this project. Please keep it attached to the field data slip with the specimens you send in. This section will be attached to the tissue sample tube that will be used for looking at the DNA of your specimens.


11. Do I have to upload the photos using the mobile app?

You have several options to get your images/reports onto iNaturalist. 1. You can create reports using the mobile app in the field as you go along. If you do not have cell service, the app will store the individual reports until your phone is connected. 2. You could take pictures in the field without using the mobile app, and upload to individual iNaturalist observations later once you are back at home. (This is often the suggested method, as you don't have to fuss with a mobile app in the field and can spend more time enjoying nature.) Finally, 3. You could take images with a regular camera and upload individual reports on the iNaturalist website through your computer browser.


12. I am interested in photographing and collecting, but I will not be able to upload to iNaturalist until after the event week. Can I still participate?

Yes! We anticipate processing specimens for several months after the foray ends. We ask that you upload your observations to iNaturalist and mail in your samples as soon after foray week as possible, but if it takes a few extra weeks, that will still be acceptable. The longer it takes, however, the fewer open sequencing spots will be left, so getting your specimens in early will give you the best chance for getting some of your specimens sequenced.


13. Can I use online platforms other than iNaturalist to upload my observations for this event?

The funding for this event was provided by National Geographic, who is now a partner with iNaturalist. The funding was provided on the basis of utilizing iNaturalist for this event. Thus, we will only be accepting specimens for sequencing consideration that have an observation posted with an iNaturalist link. You are always free to duplicate your observations on other platforms.


14. Can you return the specimens that are sent in?

Unfortunately, we will not be able to return any specimens that are submitted. If you would like to ensure your specimens are retained, please only send a "split" or a portion of the collection to the processing facility. You are welcome to retain the remainder of your collection and submit it to a local herbarium.


15. What if a new species is discovered?

Who gets the credit? iNaturalist has a "Collector's name" field that can be filled out when submitting an observation, if the name of the collector is different than the person submitting the observation. The credit for the collection of a new species would go to the person who submitted the iNaturalist observation or the name of the individual in the Collector's name field.


16. Does harvesting mushrooms hurt the environment?

The short answer is no. It is misguided to think of harvesting mushrooms in the same terms as harvesting plants or other organisms. There have been multiple studies to explore this topic and none of found harvesting to have a negative impact on the mushrooms being harvested. Mushrooms are only the reproductive structure of the organism, like an apple on a tree. The main body of the organism lives under the ground or in the wood that you are harvesting the mushroom from. Walking through the woods off trail (ground compaction) is likely to have a greater impact on the environment than harvesting mushrooms. If harvesting large numbers of mushroom species had any detrimental impacts to the organism, we would be the first organization to discourage large-scale collecting.

So, if you're interested, check it out!

Their iNat project can be found here:

https://www.inaturalist.org/projects/continental-mycoblitz-2019

Also, on another note, if anyone is willing to let me repost their images of observations from the scavenger hunt on my blog and/or a journal post here so I can maybe make a little conclusion post, let me know!

Posted on October 16, 2019 03:29 by kuchipatchis kuchipatchis | 0 comments | Leave a comment
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Mushroom Lecture and BioBlitz - Fall 2019

It's that time of year again folks, and the mushrooms are already popping! Grab your gear and friends and join us October 19th for another mushroom bioblitz in the Greater Cape Perpetua Region.

I know last fall was a real bust for most of us, with hot and dry weather into November. But fear not, the weather is surely on our side this time. We also have our resident mycological wizard, Anna Moore, returning with a presentation focusing on the diversity of fungi found in dunes and forests from Reedsport to Cape Perpetua. Her lecture will lead into a guided tour along the trails of the region in search of our elusive gilled, toothed and pored quarry.

Those who would like to take part in the guided walk portion of the event should review the flier in the link below, and RSVP as there are a limited number of slots available.

https://drive.google.com/file/d/14LzO9iaISUdkqzLSlQBiOD6sgbWQL6Mo/view?usp=sharing

If you aren't able to get a spot in the guided tour, there are still plenty of trials to hike and fungi to find. As always, be sure to bring your waterproof shoes, raincoat, water and snacks. See you all out there!

Posted on October 16, 2019 02:38 by ian_throckmorton ian_throckmorton | 0 comments | Leave a comment
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Nature Walk in Moorestown

I took a nature walk in my town on Sunday October 13th. In Moorestown, there is this place called Strawbridge Lake, where there is a decent amount of plant life along the banks. My friends from home also had an assignment to do for their science class at the river, so we went together. The weather was surprisingly warm at least compared to Massachusetts. There was some instances of animal life there too including turtles, ladybugs, and milkweed bugs. While there was some trees planted dozens of yards away from the bank, I made sure to only take photos of the plants that were wild. We saw some old people sitting outside, but overall there were no one at the lake. The lake's natural plants are only found very close to the water since it is entirely surrounded engulfed by bridges and roads. On one side there is town houses and on the other is a highway. The natural animal life there is scarce, but still able to be felt.

Posted on October 16, 2019 01:21 by kevinlatu kevinlatu | 5 observations | 0 comments | Leave a comment
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Walk Around the Reservoir 10/15/2019

This evening I took a walk down to the Reservoir on campus, which was nearby the Chestnut Hill Reservation, where I did my previous nature walk. This time, about three weeks later, it was interesting to see how much the appearance of the plant wildlife had changed. Before, all of the trees were green and there were not many berries or fruits to be seen, however now, the leaves are just starting to change color. I was able to see some yellow hickory leaves as well as some flowers and berries. As I was walking around some trees looked like they had barely any leaves, while others still had many. It was interesting comparing this walk to my last walk and I thought a lot about how quickly the seasons can change. The fall foliage, while beautiful, also reminded me of the passing of time.

Posted on October 16, 2019 00:44 by maggiekleahy maggiekleahy | 9 observations | 0 comments | Leave a comment
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Cornell Farm, South Dartmouth, MA: 15 October 2019 Plants

Over fall break my roommate and I went home to Dartmouth, MA and took a walk on a nature trail through the woods and marshes. The trails weren't too narrow; however, not too wide but a perfectly natural landscape. The foliage was beautiful and the long board walks took us over the marshes and water. We saw a lot of wildlife: some fish, beautiful birds, and of course plants, from fruits to mosses. It was as empty as expected for a Tuesday. There were a few photographers on the trails but for 99% of the time it was just us talking. It is one of my favorite places at home and it certainly didn't let me down this fall. It was beautiful and sunny, with no breeze. I would say it was in the mid 60's today -- we even got a little warm on the walk.

Posted on October 15, 2019 23:42 by peterboukheir peterboukheir | 12 observations | 0 comments | Leave a comment
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Nature Walk Plants 10/14

I went for a walk in a nature preserve in my home town right before dusk. It had been cloudy earlier in the day but when I went the sun was setting without a cloud in sight. As soon as I entered the woods I found three bucks and four does all feeding on a trail and making grunting noises. As I passed the deer I found some brambles and ferns on the ground, as well as acorns from some oak trees that the deer were eating. I kept walking and found some small hickory trees with even more deer nearby eating some grasses. As I left, I saw a sugar maple.

Posted on October 15, 2019 23:20 by oconnoyq oconnoyq | 7 observations | 0 comments | Leave a comment
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GPS Tracking Reveals Rare ‘Itinerant Breeding’ Behavior in California Bird.

Reproduction and migration are the two most demanding tasks in a bird’s life, and the vast majority of species separate them into different times of the year. Only two bird species have been shown to undertake what scientists call “itinerant breeding”: nesting in one area, migrating to another region, and nesting again there within the same year, to take advantage of shifting food resources.

https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2019/10/191015075314.htm

Posted on October 15, 2019 22:54 by biohexx1 biohexx1 | 0 comments | Leave a comment
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Debunking Myths About Bats.

People have dozens of myths and misconceptions about bats. “People have learned more about other species, like birds, but bats haven’t always gotten proper conservation attention,” explained Leila Harris, UC Davis ecology graduate student. “Bats are not any more dangerous than other wild animals and it’s important to recognize that a lot of concerns or impressions of bats simply aren’t based on reality.” Humans are far more dangerous to bats than bats are to humans.

https://magazine.ucdavis.edu/debunking-bat-myths/

Posted on October 15, 2019 22:45 by biohexx1 biohexx1 | 0 comments | Leave a comment
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How intense is 2019 Pacific Flyway bird migration in Sacramento Valley? Watch fall arrivals.

Thousands of specklebelly geese and other birds arrive in a rice field near Yuba City, as the Pacific Flyway wildlife migration intensifies. Sacramento Valley rice fields provide food and a resting place for millions of birds.

https://www.sacbee.com/news/california/article236237168.html

Posted on October 15, 2019 22:40 by biohexx1 biohexx1 | 0 comments | Leave a comment
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Nature Walk in Massapequa Preserve, NY

This weekend, while visiting home, I took a nature walk with my family in my hometown of Massapequa, New York. The weather was beautiful. It was about sixty-five degrees and partly cloudy, but mostly sunny. The sun shone through the leaves of the trees, and the lake in the middle was a dark blue. At first, I spotted a juniper and then some ferns. On iNaturalist, it suggested that the ferns were cinnamon fern. I also passed by a dark blue/violet flower, which I identified as a chicory. There was also an abundance of smaller pine trees in the area. I came across berries that were a variety of shades of blue, and iNaturalist identified them as porcelain berries. I also passed weeds with pinkish bristles, and white flowers that appeared to be swamp asters. Overall, it was a beautiful nature walk featuring a wide range of plant diversity.

Posted on October 15, 2019 22:32 by brendanfitzgerald brendanfitzgerald | 7 observations | 0 comments | Leave a comment
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Birds common in Berkeley at risk from climate change.

Chickadees. Juncos. Woodpeckers….

These familiar backyard Berkeley birds are all at risk from climate change, according to a detailed new report released last week by the National Audubon Society.

https://www.berkeleyside.com/2019/10/15/berkeley-birds-at-risk-from-climate-change

Posted on October 15, 2019 22:24 by biohexx1 biohexx1 | 0 comments | Leave a comment
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Walking Around North Hampton, NH: Plants

For my recent nature walk, I went around the woods in New Hampshire. I am lucky enough that I live near such amazing ecosystems and I particularly enjoyed walking around a dried up pond near my house. I found a lot of mosses during my walk and that must've been due to the wet living conditions. Tying this back to what we have learned in class I could see the correlations with how land plants arose from water plants. It was clear to see how well the mosses grew in the wet environments, with my favorite observation being the picture that shows moss covering the entire ground-level of the tree. I also found a lot of ferns on my walk. They were in many different colors - from dark green to light green and dark brown to tan. I believe that may be because of hydration, but iNaturalist was labeling them as different species. The weather was fair, with some clouds and a little wind chill. But, overall my walk was a calming way to end my fall break.

Posted on October 15, 2019 22:21 by cooper-schmitz cooper-schmitz | 10 observations | 0 comments | Leave a comment
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Ouchie!!!

Just had a ruby-throat chase another into my window. Now window strike but the poor little girl had her beak stuck in the screen and the other kept aggressively attacking her. Luckily it was only for a second and she got out.

Posted on October 15, 2019 21:51 by mrlascorpio83 mrlascorpio83 | 0 comments | Leave a comment
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ERS 346 Outing #3

TIME & DATE: 2019/10/14 @ 13:45
DURATION: 195 minutes
LOCATION: Bruce Trail/Crawford Lake, Halton Hills, Ontario
WEATHER: 11°C, gentle breeze (3 on Beaufort Scale), 50% cloud cover, no precipitation
HABITATS: Talus cliff (escarpment), mixed forest, meromictic lake, cedar swamp

We hiked in along the Bruce Trail entrance off of Canyon Rd, heading southeast toward Crawford Lake Conservation Area. Immediately, we were within a forested ecosystem. It was mostly mixed with Sugar Maple, White Ash, Ironwood, Black Cherry, Basswood, Paper Birch, Yellow Birch, Eastern White Pine, Eastern White Cedar, Eastern Hemlock and Red Oak. Two Northern Chipmunks scurried through the mixed forest, and I could hear two Red Squirrels up in the trees chirping at each other. Some of the ash and maple trees were covered in the silk tents of the Fall Webworm Moth. Their limbs were bare from the caterpillars.

Suddenly, the valley deepened, the forest turned damp and the ground was mucky. All around us were Eastern White Cedar, as the forest transitioned to a cedar swamp. The ground was moss covered and only Royal Ferns grew in the understorey. My mum and I checked under a couple of logs and rocks, hoping that we’d come across a salamander because we thought that this looked like perfect habitat for them – but alas, no salamanders. We could hear a couple of birds calling to each other above us, but I don’t really know what species they might have been.

We climbed up out of the valley and followed the ridgeline of the Niagara Escarpment. We paused at a lookout and I counted six Turkey Vultures soaring in the calm breeze above us. One Turkey Vulture posed for onlookers on a nearby snag. It’s likely that the topography in and around the escarpment creates a nice uplift of air that allows the vultures to scavenge easily from the air, gazing at the valley below. A sign posted next to the lookout said that Turkey Vultures can soar for as long as two hours without ever flapping their wings.

As we continued up the path toward Crawford Lake’s famous meromictic lake, I saw a couple of trees with obvious woodpecker drill holes. Some of the holes were larger – perhaps belonging to a Pileated Woodpecker; others were smaller and lower to the ground. My guess is that they perhaps belong to a Downy Woodpecker. Along the side of the path, we spotted a bird’s nest hanging low in a Basswood tree (maybe 1.5 m off the ground). The nest was small – only about the size of my palm – and iNaturalist suggests that it probably belonged to a vireo. I wondered why the nest was so low to the ground; wouldn't that make it easier to predate?

At the lake, I didn’t see anything except for a Red Squirrel. I do, however, know from previous visits to this lake that several species of fish, including Rock Bass and Sunfish species, as well as amphibians like Northern Leopard Frog inhabit the lake. These species of fish are pretty good generalists and can often be found in diverse ecological conditions. I suppose that is why they are able to survive despite the anoxic waters deeper in the lake.

Posted on October 15, 2019 21:48 by alyssamc alyssamc | 8 observations | 0 comments | Leave a comment
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Tech Tip Tuesday: Using Annotations

Ah, fall. That time of year where the air is crisp, the leaves are so bright that looking at them dazzles the mind, and all food items suddenly come in pumpkin-spice flavor. All across the state, the hills echo with the honks of geese and the exclamations of camera wielding foliage enthusiasts anxious to capture the fleeting splendor. As a Vermonter, I’ve always found this to be the perfect time of year to be outside. Between the cool sunny days, stunning scenery, and distinct drop in biting insect populations, it’s hard to stay indoors. I welcome this change of season, despite knowing that endless dark and cold months will follow.

Animals too sense this change and are busy preparing for the long winter ahead. As I write, Vermont’s vast array of biodiversity is scrambling to make their final arrangements before the deep freeze. This makes autumn an excellent time of year to make observations before curling up near the heater to watch the snow fall.

Hello and welcome to our new weekly column - Tech Tip Tuesday (TTT), where we’ll offer tools to take your observations to the next level. In the coming weeks, I invite you to ask questions and send suggestions of topics that you would like to see covered in a weekly TTT post. Beyond tech tips, some weeks we’ll suggest tasks that you can easily tackle, and help science too. These tasks will either build on tech tips that we’ve touched on in previous weeks or provide inspiration for you to get out and explore Vermont’s natural heritage.

This Week on Tuesday Tech Tip

The change of seasons offers a great opportunity to learn about adding annotations for iNaturalist observations, specifically those focused on sex, life stage, and phenology. Phenology refers to an area of scientific study exploring the relationship between seasonal or climatic changes and biological events, such as migration, mating, and flowering. In iNaturalist, you can indicate the sex of a plant or animal, an animal’s life stage, and whether a plant is fruiting or flowering. Although often overlooked, providing this information when possible helps scientists track animal and plant population dynamics, and their response to changes in their habitat. By providing annotation information in iNaturalist, you can help us at VAL keep a more detailed record as conditions change over time.

Many of you may already record this data. If so, skim through to the task at the end! Entering annotations on iNaturalist is relatively simple, however many users miss this vital step for one main reason: you can only add annotations to the final uploaded observation. Adding an annotation is possible both on your desktop computer and your android phone (sorry iPhone and iPad users, it’s still not available). To add an annotation, go to the observation on iNaturalist and locate the “annotation” bar either at the bottom of the page (android) or on the right-hand side (web). From there, you can select any information that applies to your observation.

Android
Android

Desktop
Desktop Computer

A note: please only record the information that you know for sure, similar to when identifying your observations. For example, if you’re not sure whether an observation is male or female, leave it blank and perhaps another naturalist will help you.

Identifiers can also add annotations to an observation. To find observations that are missing annotations, select “filters” and then “more filters” on the “Identify” page to locate observations missing a certain annotation. Once you have filtered your results, click on the observation you want to edit, go to the “annotations” tab, and make a selection.

Filter
Filter results

Select
Select annotations tab

TTT Task of the Week

While this step isn’t always easily thought of, since you can’t complete it during the recording step, it’s vitally important to monitoring flora and fauna. Your task this week is a choice between two things (or both):

1. Go out and locate at least two observations that you can annotate. Fruiting shrubs, deer, the final Monarchs preparing to make their way south – it’s all waiting for you to catalogue!
2. Help annotate other naturalists observations. Search through VAL’s observations and find at least two observations lacking annotations that you can confidently add.

Thank you for helping us map Vermont’s web of life and happy observing!

Posted on October 15, 2019 21:04 by emilyanderson2 emilyanderson2 | 0 comments | Leave a comment
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Plant themed walk in Williamstown, Massachusetts

Over fall break I went for a walk on a trail in Williamstown, Massachusetts. The weather was a little chilly, but sunny. Most of the leaves of trees had begun changing colors or falling. I observed many different types of plants. Most of the plants I saw on my walk were vascular plants. I observed two types of plants with larger, green leaves. iNaturalist identified them as being Amphicarpaea and American Beech, or Fagus grandifolia. I also observed long grass like plants that iNaturalist identified as Bedstraws. Another plant I observed had small red berries on it and it was identified as Barberries. I enjoyed this walk and observing all of the different plants in the area.

Posted on October 15, 2019 20:55 by lbennett lbennett | 5 observations | 0 comments | Leave a comment
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Monday's observations

We had our settings off slightly for yesterday's count. We have updated this and it appears many observations were automatically brought into the Coastal GA Butterfly Count. Hopefully our error has not left out any observations intended to be associated with our efforts to hold this 1 day butterfly BioBlitz.

Thank you to those who participated. If you have suggestions on how to improve this project let us know. We would like to pick some other dates to hold these 1 day events.

Thanks,

Coastal WildScapes

Posted on October 15, 2019 20:27 by coastalwildscapesorgcoastalwildscapesorg coastalwildscapesorgcoastalwildscapesorg | 1 comments | Leave a comment
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Want to participate?

Are you keen to participate?

1. Download the app and practice! Please ask below if you have any queries.

2. Contact us below, suggesting how you may help.
We need people to help with:
- leading bioblitzes (events at which laypeople and experts meet to discover the fauna and or flora and or fungi of a place and record it) during the event
- organizing hikes and expeditions
- linking up other activities with the challenge: for instance, walking groups, running groups, hiking groups, safety patrols, fairs, beach cleanups, hacks, etc. to combine to regular activities with observing for the challenge.
- helping reserve managers and friends groups to prepare, organize, run and make fun events in our reserves during the four days. This can be bringing in schools, recruiting new members, general lay events, bioblitzes and other events.
- arranging sponsorship for disadvantaged schools and groups to visit our nature reserves in conjunction with CTEET.
- monitoring plants in our city streets and parks to record what is where and the status (including absence!) of various plagues such as Polyphagous Shothole Borer Beetle, and Gum Clamshell Lerp.
- anything else you can think of.

We will put you in touch with the relevant person to realize your dream ...

Posted on October 15, 2019 20:19 by tonyrebelo tonyrebelo | 0 comments | Leave a comment
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Mount Ninham October 14, 2019

Yesterday I went for a hike up Mount Ninham in my hometown of Carmel (Kent), New York. Ninham is probably my favorite place to hike, mostly because there is a firetower at the top of the trail, the highest point in the county, with amazing views from the top. You can even see the NYC skyline on a clear day. It is the perfect place to watch a sunset, which is exactly what I did yesterday! I went at around 6 p.m. and it was the perfect temperature, probably about 65ºF. The top of the firetower is usually extremely windy, but yesterday it was comfortable. While walking up I kept spotting chipmunks and wanted to take pictures, but they move so fast I never ended up getting a good picture. The changing colors of the leaves looked so beautiful, and the bright yellow and orange leaves that had already fallen, covered the trail entirely. It looked magical. I thought it was so cool to take observations and realize how different each type of plant is, even if they look relatively similar. If you notice in my observations, I had to turn my camera's flash on for my last observation, because it was too dark without flash. The sun set so quickly, it was amazing to watch it physically descend into the horizon of trees. Though I started walking down soon after, it still managed to get dark fast; a good reminder that winter is soon approaching. I thought it was interesting that I was able to observe some berries. I never noticed any berries before while hiking that trail. By taking iNaturalist observations, I felt more connected to a place that I thought I knew so well. The observations reminded me that there's still so much to learn.

Posted on October 15, 2019 19:53 by dkilcaw dkilcaw | 6 observations | 0 comments | Leave a comment
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Nature walk #2: plants

My nature walk for this week consisted of wild organisms I came across on my walk from campus to the Starbucks on Washington Street. The walk itself takes about 25 min but there is a park on the way so I spent a little time here. The weather was beautiful, about 65 degrees, sunny, and slightly breezy. I saw a wide range of plants, from mosses, to flowers, to weeds. I also saw a lot of fungi on the wood of trees and on rocks, but did not include any photos. There was a ton of people out and about today walking their dogs so I got to meet a lot of friendly doggies:)

Posted on October 15, 2019 18:42 by alisonheckman alisonheckman | 5 observations | 0 comments | Leave a comment
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Nature Walk: October 8-17: Houghton Garden

For this nature walk, I decided to once again try somewhere new, so I went to the Houghton Garden in Newton. The garden, despite its name, is wild, and is not landscaped. As the theme for this walk is plants, I spent the majority of my time there looking for different types of them, capturing a picture of one every now and then. I even managed to find a good amount of lichens and mosses around the area. The Garden itself was really nice, with the foliage and trails surrounding a central pond. However, the sound of the nearby T going by every now and then surely interrupted the peaceful atmosphere, but I wouldn't say that it completely ruined the experience. Funnily enough, for the first time this semester that I wasn't looking for a vertebrate, they were everywhere. Every time I turned a corner on a trail there was a chipmunk or squirrel standing in the middle of the path. The weather was perfect, with sunny skies and the temperature hovering in the mid to low 60s.

Posted on October 15, 2019 18:32 by brandonshumate brandonshumate | 5 observations | 0 comments | Leave a comment
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