Senior Hiker Magazine – "An Urban iNaturalist" an article by Susan Hewitt about using iNat to explore Randall's Island

When I arrived back in NYC after nearly three weeks in Florida, I was delighted to see that two copies of the new issue of Senior Hiker Magazine (Issue Ten 2020) had come in the mail. Senior Hiker is a small (in terms of circulation), but very classy magazine published out of Maine. It prides itself on beautiful writing and beautiful photos.

Early this year I was asked to write a piece for the magazine about using iNaturalist, and I had decided to write about my experiences iNatting in Randall's Island Park, which is part of an island in the East River not far from where I live. Randall's Island is currently my favorite nature destination within the borough of Manhattan.

Writing the piece was my first paid writing gig ever. I also ended up co-writing a second complimentary piece about using iNat to track alpine plants, and I was paid for that too.

My piece is:

"An Urban iNaturalist -- Exploring the biodiversity of Randall's Island, NewYork", by Susan Hewitt, pages 52 to 57.

Page 57 mainly consists of an eight-paragraph sidebar which is all "About iNaturalist". Page 56 displays the official map of Randall's Island.

There are 12 really great photos in the article. The majority of the images were taken by three local iNatters who are also very good friends of mine. Chris Girgenti (the Natural Areas Manager of Randall's Island Park Alliance) has three landscape images, Matt Parr has five images of organisms, and Steven Bodzin has two images. of organisms. There are also two images of mine in the piece.

The second, complimentary article in the issue about using iNat, which I co-wrote, is on pages 58 to 62: "An Alpine iNaturalist -- Studying climate change through the flowering of alpine plants" by Georgia Murray with Susan Hewitt.

Posted on December 25, 2020 03:44 PM by susanhewitt susanhewitt


Congratulations, Susan!

Posted by jmaughn over 3 years ago

Congratulations, Susan! It would be great if we could get mollusks to the point where we could study phenology. There's clearly the potential to study range shifts with climate change. But maybe iNat observations could help demonstrate, for instance, that the average date of egg-laying in a particular species shifted.

Posted by gparosenberg over 3 years ago

Thanks James.


Thanks Gary. I think iNat records have a lot of interesting potential for tracking changes over time, including tracking the changing time of egg-laying in marine mollusks.

Posted by susanhewitt over 3 years ago

@carrieseltzer -- the Senior Hiker pieces about using iNat are finally published.

Posted by susanhewitt over 3 years ago

@ginsengandsoon -- five fine images from you Matt.
@steven-cyclist -- Two very nice images from you, Steven.
@chrisg -- three excellent images from you, Chris.

Posted by susanhewitt over 3 years ago

Is there any link to your part of the article? Congratulations, of course!

Posted by sadawolk over 3 years ago

Congratulations Susan! Great work and great to spread the word!

Posted by jholmes over 3 years ago

Hey @sadawolk, the magazine is a paper one. It is not online. And right now I don't even have a pdf of the two articles, although I hope I can get that soon.

Posted by susanhewitt over 3 years ago

Thanks @jholmes!

Posted by susanhewitt over 3 years ago

I think I can speak for the community (including all the little and not so little non-humans) and say welcome back. We missed you! And congratulations on your papers and your new career. I hope it won't keep you indoors too much.

Posted by danielatha over 3 years ago

I have been writing for publication since 1971, I just never got paid for it before! I am sure the same is true of you, Daniel.

I may possibly write another article for that magazine at some point, but it is a great deal of work for not a great deal of money, plus they want you to provide 20 beautiful images for them to choose from, and that is an awful lot of images if the images are of somewhere far flung that you have only visited once.

Posted by susanhewitt over 3 years ago

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