Happy Soon-To-Be Mother’s Day, UESiders!!

And an equally massive Happy Nurses Day – yesterday but our thanks continue – to those who’ve now spent a valiant year-plus on the front line!! 


Meanwhile and so perfect as we await resumption of compost collection at all our UES sites:

It’s also International/New York State Compost Awareness Week, May 2nd-8th and with the slogan, “Grow, Eat…  Compost…  Repeat”!!

It’s Air Quality Awareness Week, May 3rd-7th, too!!

Shall we stay on the happy foot with news of this week’s market:

Saturday, May 8th:  82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket
82 Street between First & York Avenues, 9am-2pm

WIth us will be our friends of American Pride Seafood, Bread Alone, Ballard’s Honey, Sikking Flowers and Haywood’s Fresh, Samascott, Ole Mother Hubbert, Valley Shepherd, Walnut Ridge, Hawthorne Valley and Gajeski Farms!!

Alta Ultimate  Manager Margaret weighs in:

Dear Greenmarketeers,

Asparagus should still be plentiful this week…

AND Gajeski may have rhubarb!!

(A combo that says to me there’ll be strawberries on our market’s tables soon!!)

There’ll be lots of great Mother’s Day presents on our tables, too…  Including ingredients for the best of all gifts…  Mother Day’s dinner prepared by her family!!

Do keep wearing those masks and observing that 6-foot social distance that’s been keeping us all safe and our market open!!

And one last reminder…

We really, really do need those few parking spaces on 82nd just west of the market so we can safely set up!!

Have a wonderful shopping Saturday,

Margaret

Market Manager Tutu adds:

Be thinking beautiful Mother’s Day/Sikking Flowers’ tulips, Greenmarketeers!!” 

So what’s otherwise transpiring around the hood?  Well…

Tuesday, May 25th, 6:30pm:  Special Meeting of Community Board 8 on Zoom.  Continued Discussion on New York Blood Center and Longfellow Partners private application by the New York Blood Center to create a Life Sciences Hub on their existing site in Community District 8.  To join the meeting
   To view the previous April 27th meeting on the subject    For some recent news coverage…  And to express your opinion via CM Kallos’s survey

Fervor re  Gristede/Dag continuing illegal use of now banned plastic bags continues…  Now with the request that folks also send complaints/requests for action to NYS DEC Commissioner Basil Segos (https://www.dec.ny.gov/about/407.html), AM Seawright (SeawrightR@nyassembly.gov) and NYS Senator Krueger (lkrueger@nysenate.gov)  Just a quick email on the order of “Please enforce the plastic bag law presently being violated by NYC supermarkets Gristede’s and D’Agostino”!!

Then there’s this:

Doubtless you’ve noticed the wonderful, vintage neon signage that, for decades, has brightened the Goldberger’s Pharmacy facade, NE corner of 65th and First (and the NW corner of the landmarked First Avenue Estates).  Well, now it seems that building owner Stahl – the bunch that in hope of stopping landmarking of the York Ave portion of the Estate ripped off its architectural detail and painted the structure orange –  is now and in the name of landmark integrity moving to remove Goldberger’s neon!!   Stay tuned…

Moving back to the plus side:

Been going on for more than a decade that we know and been plagued with misadventures (like blades being torn off by an inaccurately measured – as in a way too low – current speed/force), but the latest iteration of Verdant Power’s turbines are in the East RIver and sending clean, green electricity to the Roosevelt Island Gristede’s…  With many more turbines and much more wattage to come!!    

As for the week’s actual event agenda:

Saturday & Sunday, May 8th & 9th, 11am-6pm:  Great Plant Sale, Sixth Street & Avenue B.  This tip from great Green Park Gardener Kaitlin…  We’ll be checking it out!! 

Events strictly virtual: 

Tuesday, May 11th, 6:30pm:  A Talk by William Hoagland on the Whiskey Rebellion of 1794 via Zoom.   Pretty darned climactic given that theWhiskey Rebellion and its military suppression by President George Washington, brought the public career of Alexander Hamilton to a climax, established US sovereignty on the western frontier, and crushed a long American movement for greater democracy!!  Hosted by the great NYC H2O.   Free (but a donation would be nice).  For more and to sign up… 

Saturday, May 13th, 11am-12pm:  5th Annual Horseshoe Crab Festival.  Hosted by NYC Audubon with the American Littoral Society, Jamaica Bay-Rockaway Parks Conservanc,y the Gateway National Recreation Area and via Zoom.  Amorning celebrating the annual arrival of the 400-million-year-old Atlantic Horseshoe Crab at the Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge!!  It may be virtual, but you’ll see experts handle live horseshoe crabs, learn about their important ecological importance to shorebirds and medicinal value for humans!!  Free.  (There are some free in person spots available, too!)  To learn more and/or sign up
 

Thursday, May 20th, 6pm:  Ruppert Park Scoping Session via Zoom or Facebook.  Thanks to $2.4 allocated by CM Kallos, beloved but crumbling Ruppert Park begins what hopefully will result in the brilliantly designed, nurturing city oasis UESiders deserve!!  Not entirely sure Parks is up to the challenge, but let the scoping/first step begin!!  To attend… 

Add this virtual & in person combo:

Through May 9th: Jane’s Walks 2021 via Zoom.   From the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire to Vibrant, Sustainable Roosevelt Island to…  Well, you get it, of course!!  Free.  For total info/the great line-up

No end to diverse and diverting diversions:

Can’t recommend the USWR’s bi-monthly green newsletter highly enough!!  Sign up!!…  Latest on the (adorable) NYC Plover Project…  UES’s home to 3 of NYC’s best taco eateries (we’re ignoring Food & Wine’s NYC pizza ratings!)…  Secrets of our 90-year-old Empire State Building…  Running 98.5 miles in Central Park…  May classes from the NYBG…  Art coming to Randall’s Island…  Virtual tours, insights and more from the Folk Art Museum…  Beavers saving salmon…  The man who defended the apostrophe…  Aosprey in the hood…  Where the monarchs go…  Return of “The Science Guy”

Hudson River Almanac time:

4/20 – Manhattan:  Hudson River Park’s River Project Staff checked the sampling and collection gear that we deploy off Pier 40 in Hudson River Park and found an impressive array of river life. Highlights included two very closely related species: lined seahorses (70, 95 mm) and a northern pipefish (185 mm). A gorgeous white perch (180 mm), and three blue crabs (20-115 mm) completed the catch. – Anna Koskol, Olivia Radick

Callinectes sapidus - Wikipedia            Blue Crabs Really Are Blue!!


4/22 – Brooklyn:  We celebrated a windy, chilly Earth Day by seining at Shirley Chisholm State Park on Jamaica Bay. Two hauls of our net collected 22 Atlantic silverside, two striped killifish, a mummichog, 28 sand shrimp, two blue crabs, a moon jelly, and an army of mud snails. Oystercatchers patrolled the shoreline while a kestrel pinpoint-hovered over the grasslands. 


Moon Jelly Moon Jellies!!

It was appropriate on Earth Day to pay homage to Shirley Chisholm, a congresswoman and outstanding leader who reminds us that “Service is the rent we pay for the privilege of living on the Earth.” –  Chris Bowser, Tiffany Yeung, Ciara Scully, Raymond Rogers, Andrew Meashaw

4/23 – Manhattan:  “Syngnathid” season (seahorses and pipefish) continued as Hudson River Park’s River Project Staff checked the sampling and collection gear that we deploy off Pier 40 in Hudson River Park. Staff found three northern pipefish (120-180 mm) and a lined seahorse (55 mm).  –  Siddhartha Hayes, Toland Kister

Hello, Fish of the Week:

4/18 – Fish-of-the-Week for Week 117 is the emerald shiner (Notropis atherinoides), number 53 (of 234), on our Hudson River Watershed List of Fishes. 

Emerald shiner
An Emerald Shiner

The emerald shiner is a minnow, one of 34 carps and minnows (Cyprinidae) in the watershed.  C.L. Smith called them “a fish of big waters.” They are a small fish never reaching more than 130 mm-long.

Emerald shiners are found across the northern reach of the Americas from the Saint Lawrence watershed through the Great Lakes south to Texas and then northwest to the Canadian Northwest Territories. They are not native to our watershed.   J.R. Greeley’s Biological Survey of the Lower Hudson Watershed (1937) did not find them here and, in the Hudson, they are considered to be a Mississippi refugium/canal immigrant having found their way here via the New York State canal system sometime after 1937. Today they are common in the Mohawk River and are occasionally found in the estuary. – Tom Lake

Then there’s the Bird of the Week:

The beautiful Streamertail!!

Check out a month’s amazing 96th Street compost collection stats below…

Ever so and perpetually green,

UGS

Eco Fact of the Week:  Renewable energy – think wind and solar power – is the fastest-growing energy sector in both our state and our city!!   (NYState law mandates that 70% of our electricity be generated by renewable sources by 2035!!) 

2021 Compost collected at 96th & Lex (from 4/2/2021):  4/2 – 2 bins, 55 Drop-Offs; 615 lbs.;   326 lbs.;  4/9 – 2 bins, 93 Drop-Offs, 480 lbs. (+47.4%);  4/16 – 3 bins, 136 drop-offs,  621 lbs. (+29.4%) ;  4/23 – 3 bins, 100 Drop-Offs (-1%); 615 lbs.;  4/30 – 135 Drop-Offs, 4 bins, 908 lbs. (+47.6%)
2020 TOTALS (from 1/9/20-3/25/20):    294 bags;  12,522 lbs
2019 TOTALS:    43,417 POUNDS   (21.7 TONS)
2018 TOTALS:    23,231 POUNDS  (11.65 TONS)

Eco Tip of the Week:  Okay, seems Le Triage Wine did accept corks for recycling until the recycler changed policy and would no longer cover postage which quickly became a prohibitive expense for the shop.  And so, the search for another collector/collection point resumes!!

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Happy Arbor Day and Brink of May, UESiders!!

You bet, we’ve been pretty much in a state of euphoria since last week’s return-of-compost announcement!!

Rest assured, folks are working hard to get collection up and running again soon at the old familiar drop-offs in our hood!!  


(If you haven’t seen the
 mayor’s response to the organics restart…) 

And now for the next pressing UES issue:

That being the proposed 334-foot Blood Center building replacement, the most obvious  but possibly mildest threat of which is the shade it’d cast over St. Catherine’s Park…  Seemingly all kinds of strangeness involved…  The speed with which the “project’s” advanced…  Possible real estate interest shenanigans, maybe even with mayoral connections…  Infringement on established mid-block zoning regulations…  The complete absence from any and all discussions by the – so-called – Friends of St. Catherine’s Park… 

(We’ll add the question:  Does the UES need another cookie-cutter, glass-walled, an- architect-walked-through-the-room, medically-affiliated building?) 

This week’s
 CB8 virtual meeting on the subject – with scathing report by UES neighbor Marty Bell and attended by some 180 – just went up online and this Patch article gives a good lay of the land…   

Depending on your personal stance, there’s also
 CM Kallos’s brief survey
 to fill out…  (Do ignore its December date)

Then there’s the not-so-little matter of the fate of Governors Island: 

Opposition to the usual development track (Hotels!!  Casinos!!) well organized by the new group M.A.G.I.C. with a one-click anti letter, an alternative island plan and an event on the island set for this Sunday…:

Sunday, May 2nd, 1pm: M.A.G.I.C. Alternative South Island Visualizations Tour.  Wear something green and join Metro Area Governors Island Coalition (M.A.G.I.C.) on Governors Island for an informal walking tour using Alternative South Island Visualization Plans as a theme and highlighting drastic building heights proposed.  Tour members’ll be saying hello to the Harbor School, GrowNYC, Earth Matter, Billion Oyster Project and others along the way.   Free, of course.  To reserve your place:  
GovernorsIslandCoalition@gmail.com…  And ferry tickets ASAP… 

Going ultra local again:

Have you noticed Gristede’s and D’Agostino are still and unlawfully packing groceries in plastic bags…??  And not necessarily Gristede’s/D’Ag branded??!!  Seems that the Gristede brain trust’s decided that, for the time being, fines for using plastic are cheaper than stocking paper bags…  Even going so far as to purchase from other chains that have discontinued use, like FoodTown!!  To let NYS DEC and Attorney General James know if
 you disapprove…  

But all of the above rather pales when compared with what’s been discovered along the California coast:


As in thousands of now disintegrating barrels of DDT scattered 50-60 years ago in the Pacific off Santa Barbara!!  Believe it

Okay.  Enough.  

There’re these glad tidings, too:   

The Indian Point Nuclear Plant closes today!!

(Hello, brisk forward movement on offshore wind!!) 

Going infinitely lighter with our wonderful market:

Saturday, April 24th:  82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket

82 Street between First & York Avenues, 9am-2pm

With us will be American Pride Seafood, Bread Alone, Ballard’s Honey, Sikking Flowers and Haywood’s Fresh, Samascott, Ole Mother Hubbert, Valley Shepherd,  Hawthorne Valley and Gajeski Farms!!

Fingers crossed Walnut Ridge returns!!


And Mega Manager Margaret sez:

Dear Greenmarketeers,

Spring is beginning to spring with not only asparagus but ramps, spinach, spring onion and green garlic appearing on our market tables…

Yes, finally, the ground is warm enough for growth!!

Since our markets are often crowded, we’re continuing to ask you shoppers to wear masks and to be mindful of social distance.   Just look for the chalk and tape marks on the pavement as your guide.

Last week there was plenty of parking and set-up space for our farmers/bakers/ fisherman!!  Great job, shoppers!!  Thank you, everyone, and keep up the good work!!

See you on 82nd Street,

Margaret


Moving on to a combo live and virtual event:

Through Sunday, May 2nd:  Randall’s Island Cherry Blossom Celebration Week.  Cherry blossom walking tours…   Arts and crafts activities…   A Cherry Blossom crossword puzzle…  A cherry blossom maze…   A Japanese folk dance performance and more…  For sure, the Alliance has gone all out!!  Free.   For the full program

Then 100% live:

Saturday, May 8th, 12 noon:  Clean Team Time on East 86th.  Hosted by the 86th Street Association and meeting in front of Shake Shack, 154 East 86th!!  Gloves, tools and bags provided.  Bring yourself and desire to make our UES more spic-‘n-span.  For full details
 
And virtual only:

Friday, April 30th, 5pm:  Ethel and Friends – Balcony Bar From Home.  Fix yourself a drink and experience The Met’s Balcony Bar from home with ETHEL, founded by a UES neighbor and one of the most acclaimed string quartets in the contemporary classical field.  This week hosting guest composer and flutist Allison Loggins-Hull.  To join and enjoy


Thursday, May 6th, 7pm:  Senator Krueger’s Virtual Town Hall – Managing Debt.   With guests Ellen Davidson, Staff Attorney, Civil Practice, Legal Aid Society; – Sarah Ludwig, Founder and Co-Director, New Economy Project; and  Raquel Villagra, Staff Attorney, New Economy Project.  Participate via Zoom, Facebook or phone.  Instructions on how to join follow your registration… 

Thursday, May 6th, 2-4pm:  AM Seawright’s Weekly Virtual Knitting Social.  Such a lovely, down-home NYC couple of hours.  Chat…  Share…  Knit…  Have your knitting admired and be inspired by others’ creative needlework!!  All you need to do is join in on zoom!!

At your convenience:  Virtual Tours from the Municipal Art Society.  The history of stairs… Frank Lloyd Wright and the Guggenheim…  The History of NY Sports Teams, People and Venues…  And more, of course!!  Members, $15.  Non-members, $25.  For more and to register… 

More than time for some diversion:

Great virtual Water Ecology/STEM classes for grades 2-12 from NYC H2O and complete with free registration…  Nine mistakes that became real words…  Great, free wetlands/estuary webinars/conservation classes from the NYS DEC…  Inflatable origami to the rescue…  Two great nature books (#1 on birds and #2 on saviors of American wildlife)…  Why to concentrate on cutting methane…  The woman who made Van Gogh...  The state of western monarch butterflies…  Why we want to recycle EV batteries…  Young NYC birders…  The totally interesting spring ’21 issue of Urban Audubon Mag…  Russia, farming and climate change… Name a pair of adorable owlets…  History of fish sticks… Bats making a comeback... (scroll down to page 32)…  Wildlife and regenerative agriculture…  New science turns plastic into fuel…  Why and how to brush a kitty’s teeth…  Do birds have eyelashes…

 Secretarybird by Rudi Luyten.
Indeed, secretary birds do!

Closing, as ever, with the Hudson River Almanac:

4/14 – Manhattan: Our Hudson River Park’s River Project Staff checked the sampling and collection gear that we deploy off Pier 40 in Hudson River Park. We caught a beautiful adult white perch (205 mm), but that was eclipsed by another handsome (70 mm) lined seahorse (Hippocampus erectus). –  Anna Koskol and Olivia Radick


 Lined sea horse
A Lined Seahorse

4/14 – Hook Mountain: We counted 137 north-migrating raptors at the Hook Mountain Hawkwatch today; broad-winged hawk was high count with 74. Non-raptor observations included double-crested cormorant (57) and common grackle (35). Butterflies, identified by Vince Polgar, included eastern tailed-blue and black swallowtail. – Ajit I. Antony, Liza Antony, Eugene Gardner, Steve Sachs, Vince Plogar

 Eastern tailed blue butterfly
Eastern Tailed-Blue Swallowtail

And the Fish of the Week is:

4/12 – Fish-of-the-Week for Week 116 is the lake sturgeon (Acipenser fulvescens), number 13 of 234, on our Hudson River Watershed List of Fishes.

 
 Lake sturgeon
A Lake Sturgeon

Lake sturgeon is one of three sturgeons (Acipenseridae) in the watershed. The others being the Atlantic sturgeon (A. oxyrinchus) and the shortnose sturgeon (A. Brevirostrum), both primarily marine and estuarine species. The three range in size (length) from the Atlantic, that has been found to reach at least 14-feet-long in the Hudson River, down to the smallest, the shortnose, with 35-40-inches being their maximum. In the middle is the Lake sturgeon that can grow to 9 feet long.

Lake sturgeon is a periglacial species. Following the ebbing of the great continental glaciers of the last Ice Age, they have been present in proglacial lakes in contiguous watersheds across North America from the Saint Lawrence watershed and Hudson Bay, to Lake Champlain, through the Great Lakes, the upper Midwest and Canada, and down into the Mississippi Basin. Until recently, however, there was little evidence that they had made their way into the Hudson River watershed. As a result, we have resisted adding them to the Hudson River Watershed List of Fishes.

Since the 1990’s, however, the Oneida Lake Fish Hatchery has stocked lake sturgeon in Oneida Lake, thirteen miles west of Rome to the point where they are now naturally reproducing.  More recently, some immature sturgeon have found their way out of Oneida Lake, probably through the Barge Canal, and have been caught by anglers in the Mohawk River. Thanks to compelling research data and time on the water from Scott Wells, Karin Limburg, and Doug Carlson, the Lake sturgeon’s presence is no longer questioned and they were added in 2017.  – Tom Lake

Not forgetting the Bird of the Week



A Black Capped Vireo

Yes, greenness is goodness, 

UGS




Eco Fact of the Week:  Every time a load of synthetic clothes is washed, 9,000,000 plastic microfibers are released!!
 

2021 Compost collected at 96th & Lex (from 4/2/2021):  4/2 – 2 bins, 55 Drop-Offs and 326 lbs.;  4/9 – 2 bins, 93 Drop-Offs, 480 lbs.;  4/16 – 3 bins; 136 drop-offs; TBA lbs.
2020 TOTALS (from 1/9/20-3/25/20):    294 bags;  12,522 lbs
2019 TOTALS:    43,417 POUNDS   (21.7 TONS)
2018 TOTALS:    23,231 POUNDS  (11.65 TONS)



Eco Tip of the Week:  Double checking on conflicting responses from Le Triage Wine re cork recycling!! 

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Dear UESiders,

May your 2021 Earth Day have been one of shared awareness, action and wonderfulness!

And if it wasn’t before it will be now given today’s announcement by the mayor that…

Mighty drumroll..


NYC’s going to revive curbside organics/compost service!!

Okay, not revived tomorrow and not completely…  BUT…  To an okay-for-the-moment degree!!

And meaning those petitions we all signed and will continue to sign did and will matter and compel retrograde individuals in government to mind the will of the people…
i.e. us.

Do consider sending thank you emails to CMs 
Powers and Reynoso for their relentless compost advocacy…

(Pretty strange the news would break not on The Times or local TV, but 
a waste industry  site…)

Deep breath.

But that’s far from the end of April 22nd glad tidings:

The NYC Council cast a unanimous vote to ban chemical pesticides – Roundup and friends – from city property on Earth Day 2021!!

(Yes, the stuff’s been used in our parks and to the tune of 265 gallons in 2019!!) 

Still more heartening Earth Day news and info:

*This CBS Morning News piece (“Shellebrating Earth“) covers lots of eco ground pertinent to all the U.S., focusing on our own NYC in particular…  

*PBS NewsHour weighs in, too, with a great piece (from masks to compostable take-out materiel) 

*Proposed NYS legislation to limit methane emissions…   

*NYS’s also appropriated $2.8M to expand ZEV (zero emission vehicle) fleets and charging stations… 


Of course, our Greenmarket’s always great news:

Saturday, April 24th:  82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket
82 Street between First & York Avenues, 9am-2pm

At their tables will be all our great regulars…   American Pride Seafood, Bread Alone, Ballard’s Honey, Sikking Flowers and Haywood’s Fresh, Samascott, Ole Mother Hubbert, Valley Shepherd,  Hawthorne Valley and Gajeski Farms!!

(You read it right…  Walnut Ridge won’t be with us this Saturday…)


Then there’s Alta Suprema Manager Margaret’s wisdom of the week:

Dear Greenmarketeers,

Keep your eyes open for the first asparagus of the season!  Rumor has it that despite yesterday’s freezing temperatures, some asparagus is mature enough to harvest.  Cross those fingers…  But remember it’s just the first of the season  and there’ll be plenty more to come!!

Other signs of spring are spinach, radishes, pea shoots, and possibly some green garlic. Walnut Ridge is out this week but will be back next.

Oh and do remember:  It’s the last week for Winter Warriors. Stop by and claim your prize!!

Keep wearing those masks and social distancing!!

And PLEASE help us set up the market by not parking on the western half of the block and keep reminding your friends and neighbors keep that space free for Greenmarket we all share!!

Tutu’s off this weekend, so I’ll be at 82nd for the entire market day!!

Looking forward to seeing you then,

Margaret


Add this second, actual, in person, 2-days-after-Earth-Day event:

Saturday, April 24th, 10am-1pm:  Roosevelt Island Earth Love Day, Meditation Lawn  



Of course, there’re virtual events, too:

Friday, April 23rd to Sunday, May 2nd:  10th Annual Czech Film Festival.  Hosted by UES’s Czech Center and featuring dramas, docs and animation.  $5 per film you choose. For more and to view...

Thursday, April 27th, 2-4pm:  AM Seawright’s Weekly Virtual Knitting Social.  Such a lovely, down-home NYC couple of hours.  Chat…  Share…  Knit, have your knitting admired and be inspired by others’ needlework!!  All you need to do is RSVP!!

Thursday, April 29th, 4-4:30pm: Reinvesting in Zero Waste Infrastructure in the Wake of Pandemic on Instagram @grownyc & @nrdc_org.  Hosted by Emily Bachman of GrowNYC and Eric Goldman of the NRDC.  The lay of NYC composting land and what we can do to #saveourcompost!!


The weekly injection of activism:

If you believe the historically significant, 170-year old 14-16 Fifth Avenue should preserved from destruction/demolition

Should you support the Federal Shark Fin Ban
 
If you think the pygmy rabbits’ habitat should be restored… 


 Pygmy rabbit       The Bunny in Question

Bring on the diversions:

More April GrowNYC virtual Instagram events…  And distance learningPlus their programs designed for and by kids (scroll down)…  Even our NYS Comptroller’s has Earth Day news…  Doesn’t get more diverse than lowdown (and it’s really interesting) on scrap metal sorting equipment…  A “new” Bronze Age Irish tomb... Environmental news from our 5 boroughs as reported by the NYS DEC… Invasive jumping worms…  AI and the Dead Sea Scrolls...  Microplastics in the air…   NYS sustainable brewery conference…  James Beard’s Whole Orange-Almond Cake recipe…  NYS & 17-year cicadas…  Game-changing ultra white paint…   The history of Earth Day…  The City Parks Foundations’ great youth programs…  The NYS “Greening NYS Report”…  Interactive subway art…  Great minds reflecting on nature…  Trees for the South Bronx…  Treehugger’s Best Green Cleaning Products 2021 (Bon Ami lives!!)…  NYS Forest Rangers on the job…  Abandoned oil and gas wells in NYS… 

And the Hudson River Almanac’s Fish of the Week is:

4/3 – Fish-of-the-Week is the Atlantic Needlefish (Strongylura marina), number 114 (of 234) on our Hudson River Watershed List of Fishes. 


Atlantic needlefish
What Makes a Needlefish a Needlefish

On December 13, 2018, heading into largely fishless winter, we decided to begin a weekly feature called The Fish-of-the-Week.  We would select a different fish from our watershed list of fishes each week to highlight. Our Week One choice was one of our favorites, the Atlantic Needlefish.

We reprise the Atlantic Needlefish this week.

Atlantic needlefish is one of two members of Belonidae (Needlefishes) in the estuary, the other being the houndfish (Tylosurus crocodilus). The associated Latin and common names, “needle” and “crocodile” are both suggestive and descriptive.

Natural selection designed the Atlantic needlefish to be the consummate predator. They are primarily sight-feeders with more than 20% of their adult length taken up by slender tooth-studded jaws A ventrally-adjusted lateral-line allow needlefish to drift on the surface, hunt for prey, and still maintain an air-water interface. They can reach nearly two feet in length and will frequently leap out of the water in pursuit of prey. They are attracted by light, and anglers fishing at night in the tropics with a lantern hanging off the stern, have been known to get skewered by needlefish.

With their quickness and bony jaws, they are a challenge on light tackle. When casting and using quick-retrieving flashy lures, you can trace their attack—a long ripple-disturbance on the water. Then they strike, immediately leap clear of the water, swap ends, and toss the lure back at you.

Atlantic needlefish are found in coastal and inshore waters from New England to South America and are designated as a temperate to tropical marine species. Their presence in the Hudson River estuary has gone largely unnoticed. In J.R. Greeley’s A Biological Survey of the Lower Hudson Watershed (1937), he considered needlefish rare. He noted that they spawn in salt water although his survey found immature needlefish as far upriver as Ulster Park (river mile 87). Larval needlefish have been captured more than ninety miles upriver in freshwater, and it appears that they are spawning in the estuary.

A needlefish oddity occurs when you cook them: they are delicious smoked and their bones turn Kelly green. – Tom Lake

Adding Bird-of-the-Week to the mix…

Will be dreaming of renewed compost collection at 82nd, 92nd and 70th tonight,

UGS



Eco  Fact of the Week:  And one more time…  The UES site where we can recycle our corks:  Le Triage Wine, 1657 First  Avenue, between 86th and 87th!! 

2021 Compost collected at 96th & Lex (from 4/2/2021):  4/2 – 2 bins, 55 Drop-Offs and 326 lbs.;  4/9 – 2 bins, 93 Drop-Offs, 480 lbs.;  4/16 – 3 bins; 136 drop-offs; TBA lbs.
2020 TOTALS (from 1/9/20-3/25/20):    294 bags;  12,522 lbs
2019 TOTALS:    43,417 POUNDS   (21.7 TONS)
2018 TOTALS:    23,231 POUNDS  (11.65 TONS)


Eco Tip of the Week:  Masks – all of them – are totally/completely/absolutely unrecyclable.  TOSS!!

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Happy Earth Day/Thursday May 22nd, UESiders!!

So many celebrations…   

But best of all in our neck-of-the-woods:

EARTH DAY, Thursday, April 22nd, 10am-12pm: Volunteer Litter Pick-Up On Our Esplanade

Hosted by the great Green Park Gardeners NYC and Esplanade Friends, 20 lucky volunteers will be putting a clean and even more inviting face on our wonderful Esplanade!! GPG/Friends provide disposable gloves, grabbers, and trash bags!!  You provide your over-18-year old self in mask, good walking shoes, sunscreen and ready to sign the usual insurance waiver!!  Meet at the Esplanade’s 71st Street entrance with groups then cleaning their way both north and south.  To reserve one of those coveted 20 places, email Stacy Papas at executivedirector@esplanadefriends.org!! 

A day earlier and further south on First Ave:

Wednesday, April 21st, 8:30am-3pm and Every Wednesday Thereafter:  Pre-Earth Day Celebration/Return of Compost Collection to Dag Hammerskjold Plaza, First Avenue and 47th Street

CM Powers parties down this Earth Day by reviving a second weekly organics collection site in his district!!  (Most excellent, sir!!)  For complete details

Need we say, this week’s pre-Earth Day Greenmarket’ll be really great, too:

Saturday, April 17th:  82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket

82 Street between First & York Avenues, 9am-2pm 

With us will be the full compliment of our farmers/bakers/fisherman friends:   American Pride Seafood, Bread Alone, Ballard’s Honey, Sikking Flowers and Haywood’s Fresh, Samascott, Ole Mother Hubbert, Valley Shepherd,  Hawthorne Valley, Gajeski and Walnut Ridge Farms!!

Time for Most Uber Market Manager Margaret to weigh in:

Dear Greenmarketeers,

Happy to say we’re expecting all our great regulars…  But 1857 Vodka’s going to be with us, too!!

And if you haven’t already, be sure to stop in the church/schoolyard to check out our newest addition,  Haywood’s Fresh.  Not only do they have superlative grass-fed beef and pork, but we’re talking duck eggs too!!

Then there’s the selection of vegetable “starts” and spring-flowering plants at both Nolasco and Gajeski!!  (Think about planting a kitchen herb garden or maybe a colorful window box to bring some spring into your home!!)  If you need more immediate gratification, Sikking Flowers is back with their gorgeous, fresh-cut flowers!!
 
Oh, and great news for you shoppers with Health First Insurance!!  You can now use your OTC Card to buy fresh fruits and vegetables at NYC Greenmarkets!!  Stop by our Market Info Tent for full details!! 

Hey, not forgetting you, Winter Warriors!!  FYI, you’ve got 2 more chances to check in and bring your total up to the total of 10 it takes to win those precious bragging rights and – oh, yeah! – your prize!!

Know all you shoppers’ll continue wearing your masks and keeping 6 feet distant from others!!  (Just look for the tape and chalk marks we’ve put down to help you stay safe…)

Last but hardly least, please-please-please don’t park on the west end of the 82nd on market Saturday mornings.,,  Remind your friends and neighbors, too!!

We really do need those few parking spots for the farmers and to make sure there’s adequate space for social distancing. 

Happy shopping, one and all!!

A very happy Earth Day, too!!

Margaret

Moving on to events in the virtual realm:

Friday, April 16th, 6-7:30pm:  A Talk by Eric Sanderson – Before Ridgewood.  The gentleman who gave us “Mannahatta” and the Welikia Project shares his thoughts ranging from Brooklyn, its water system present and past, and the terminal moraine left behind by the Wisconsin Glacier.  (The man’s never had a thought that wasn’t deep and interesting.)  Free (but consider a donation).  To register… 

Monday, April 19th, 6:30-8pm:  2021 NYC Mayoral Candidate Forum – A New Vision for Parks & Open Space.
New Yorkers for Parks and Play Fair Coalition host/grill mayoral candidates on their positions on/plans for our NYC Parks.  To RSVP

Thursday, April 22nd, 2-4pm:  AM Seawright’s Weekly Virtual Knitting Social.  Amazing how many great UES people are knitters!!  Meet and greet ’em…   Chat…  Share…  Knit, have your knitting admired and be inspired by others’ needlework!!  All you need to do is RSVP!!

Thursday, April 22nd, 5pm:  “Saving Stuyvesant Town: How One Community Defeated the Worst Real Estate Deal in History.  Our once CM Dan Garodnick discusses his new book with Deputy Mayor of Housing and Economic Development Vicki L. Been on zoom.  A Roosevelt House event.  Free.  For more and to RSVP

Until Thursday, April 22nd, 6:30-7:30pm:  “World of Wonders” Conversation Series.  Hosted by the Randall’s Island Park Alliance Literary Club with poet Aimee Nezhukumatathil giving insights into her writing as she’s discovers the natural wonders of Randall’s Island Park!!Free.  For details and to register

Wednesday, April 28th,1-5pm:  Annual NYC Solar and Storage Installer Workshop.   CUNY and Con Ed field their annual workshop with presentations from the FDNY, NYC Department of Buildings and the NYC Mayor’s Office of Sustainability.  Topic include Con Edison Interconnection Requirements & Processes, NYC DOB Application Processes for Construction & Electrical Permits, FDNY Application Processes for Solar and Storage, Impact of Local Laws on NYC’s Solar & Storage Markets and Solar and Storage Permitting: Technical Assistance and Resources.  (Who knew there was such a “workshop”??)  Free. To register 

Not skipping activism:

NYState’s in search of folks from experts to just plain citizens to participate in assessing climate change’s impact on where they/we live!!  For more and to sign on

Some great new green employment opportunities: 

As in GrowNYC is hiring!!  And we quote, “We are currently hiring seasonal employees for our Greenmarket farmers markets, Farmstands, Fresh Food Box sites, food scrap collection drop-offs, urban teaching garden and more!!”  Check those great jobs out…  (Food scrap collection drop-off positions??!!  Bring ’em on!!)

Sixteen-week summer internships with the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation and the Student Conservation Council… 

Bring on those diversions:

Digital artwork and the climate…     NYC’s most in-demand street(?)…  No, we just don’t stop singing the praises of entomologist Douglas Tallamy, most recently weighing in on the importance of oak trees in the “Times”… Argentina’s moving to pass a law mandating environmental education…  How NYC boroughs got their names…  Rikers Island and the future of NYC waste handling…  Two homes in a Dutch water tower…  NYS’s Digital Camping Guide…  Then there’re NYS Conservation Officers…  Trucks made of fossil-free steel…  You bet, chopsticks can be recycled…  Reducing pesticide use

And from an esteemed local source:

First she introduced us to UES bee life in “Live from Schurz Park”…  Now, master gardener Banford Weissman’s enlightening us on gardening with native plants in metropolises like NYC!!

Closing with the latest from the Hudson River Almanac:

3/31 – Manhattan: Our Hudson River Park’s River Project Staff checked the sampling and collection gear that we deploy off Pier 40 in Hudson River Park. The highlight of our catch was, by far, a gorgeous 170 millimeters(mm)-long white perch (Morone americana).

White perch
A White Perch

We also sighted a pair of dolphins in the Hudson River off Pier 46, breaching the surface and playing for a few minutes before disappearing back under the waves. – Siddhartha Hayes

[Exactly one week ago, three short-beaked common dolphins (Delphinus delphis) were spotted in the East River off Greenpoint in Brooklyn, swimming toward Manhattan. While suggestive, but not entirely conclusive, these may have been two of those three dolphins. They could have followed the East River to the Battery, then turned upriver to swim past Pier 46 about two miles up the Hudson River. Tom Lake]

Then there’s the Fish of the Week:

3/27 – Hudson River Watershed: Fish-of-the-Week for Week 114 is the Atlantic mackerel (Scomber scombrus),number 215 (of 234), on our Hudson River Watershed List of Fishes. 

Atlantic mackerel
An Atlantic Makerel


The Atlantic mackerel is one of two members of its family (Scombridae) in our watershed. The less well-known and less common species is the Spanish mackerel (Scomberomorus maculatus). Atlantic mackerel are a pelagic species (open ocean) traveling in schools. They can grow to 22-inches, weigh seven pounds, and are found along the east coast of the United States from Labrador to North Carolina.

Their dorsal-lateral pattern of dark blue lines with brilliant green and a stark silver abdomen are a much-favored pattern for fishing lures, such as swimming plugs and poppers for bluefish and striped bass. A colloquial name for juvenile Atlantic mackerel, particularly in New England, is “tinker mackerel.”

Atlantic mackerel winter off the Carolinas before migrating up the coast in spring to spawn in northern New England waters. This migration used to provide a springtime recreational opportunity for anglers in party boats out of Brooklyn’s Sheepshead Bay and elsewhere. However, in recent times, this large body of migratory fish has bypassed the inshore reach of the New York Bight, passing too far offshore for party boats, in their dash to cooler waters. This shift in migration pattern could be climate related. -Tom Lake

May our future Earth Days be ever greener,

UGS



Eco Fact of the Week:  Research funded by packaging firm Ball Corporation says states with bottle bills and curbside support have highest recycling rates!!

2021 Compost collected at 96th & Lex (from 4/2/2021):  2 Large Bins & 55 Drop-Offs 
2020 TOTALS (from 1/9/20-3/25/20):    294 bags;  12,522 lbs
2019 TOTALS:    43,417 POUNDS   (21.7 TONS)
2018 TOTALS:    23,231 POUNDS  (11.65 TONS)

Eco Tip of the Week:  At last an UES site where we can recycle our corks…  Le Triage Wine, 1657 First  Avenue, between 86th and 87th!!

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Dear UESiders!!

We are so happy this week and why??

All those jellybeans and chocolate bunnies consumed??  The fun of the Gonzaga vs UCLA game??  Flowers and trees beginning to bloom up and down the UES??  

All pretty darned wonderful, of course, but pale in comparison to…

Last Friday’s return of compost collection at 96th!!

About which GrowNYC Maitre de Composte David Gaul observes:

We had a great first day at 96th Street.,,  I just got the weight report in last night and we collected 326 lbs, of food scraps…  That’s 2 large Toter bins filled from 55 drop-offs.  We have a ways to go to get back to our previous rate of collections there but — as is usual on a first day — we received many excited gasps and pledges to return with heaps of scraps the following week.  Se we are anticipating a big growth rate this Friday!!

Can’t wait for it!

David

And now we of UGS have the pleasure of recording 96th Street’s 2021 weekly totals for all to see and admire!!  

Happiness is also our wonderful Greenmarket:

Saturday, April 3rd:  82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket

82 Street between First & York Avenues, 9am-2pm 

At their tables will be our great year-round farmers/bakers/fisherman friends:   American Pride Seafood, Bread Alone, Ballard’s Honey, Sikking Flowers and Haywood’s Fresh, Samascott, Ole Mother Hubbert, Valley Shepherd,  Hawthorne Valley, Gajeski and Walnut Ridge Farms!!

FYI,  had superior post-Easter burgers thanks to Haywood’s Fresh!!

Continuing along the good foot trail, NYS’s new budget includes:

*Environmental Bond Act $3 billion Environmental Bond Act to invest in programs improving water quality, resiliency, reducing emissions and providing funds for local infrastructure and ecosystem restoration.  (The Bond Act’ll be on the ballot for voter approval in November 2022.)

*Environmental Protection Fund:  Provides critical investments in projects to improve and protect water quality, enhance recycling, preserve land, promote recreational opportunities, create green jobs and fight climate change

*Protect Clean Water: Building on the 2017 Clean Water Infrastructure Act, the 2022 budget includes an additional $500 million for  preventing and addressing contamination, upgrading drinking water systems and filtration plants, upgrading wastewater treatment plants, replacing failing septic systems, improving sewer systems, replacing lead service lines and preserving land in drinking watersheds.

*Expanding Renewable Energy: Legislation that’ll bring NYS’s renewable siting process in line with other types of large-scale energy production. It also included legislation to create a standardized tax model for renewable energy projects, thus  encouraging more renewable energy projects and streamlining their implementation. 

*Funding for Parks: To improve/update NYS’s flagship parks, support critical park infrastructure projects, rehabilitate campgrounds and improve access to State lands.

*Investing in Mass Transit: Upstate transit systems will be provided with $20 million for the second installment of a $100 million five-year program to support transit agencies’ transition to electric buses. Under this program, the transit authorities will electrify 100% of their fleets by 2035. The Legislature also protected dedicated MTA funds, ensuring that mass transit gets100% all of allocated funding. 

*Green Energy Investments:  $29 billion in green energy investments to create 12,400 megawatts of renewable energy.  Investments include the largest offshore wind program in the nation, plans to make New York a global wind energy manufacturing powerhouse, constructing a green energy transmission superhighway and a public-private partnership to build 23 solar farms and one hydroelectric facility.

NYS’s also encouraging:

*Everyone tending a lawn to steer totally clear of phosphorus-containing grass fertilizer!!

Briefly going global:

*After worldwide outcries from the scientific community,  environmentalists and more, Swedish officials scrapped a flight to test the “idea” of blocking sunlight to fight climate change!!

Then some activism:

If you believe all Americans should have broadband access

Ever more and more interesting virtual events: 

At your convenience:  Live From Carl Schurz Park.  This week’s illuminating talk delivered by naturalist Susan Hewitt, renowned expert on algae, fungi, mosses, lichens and ferns (and ace Island Gardener, too!!) fills us in about the amazingly diverse Lower Plants  thriving in the park!! To view

Tuesday, April 13th, 2-4pm:  AM Seawright’s Weekly Virtual Knitting Social.  Meet folks from all around the hood…  Chat…  Make new friends…  Knit, have your knitting admired and be inspired by others’ needlework!!  All you need to do is RSVP!!

Tuesday, April 13th, 7pm:  Bicycling with Butterflies.   Hosted by Monarch Watch, its great Director Chip Taylor and The Raven Book Store.  Author and outdoor educator Sara Dykman – the first person to bicycle the entire monarch migration route – shares her rich, utterly unique experiences.  Free.  For more and to sign up

Thursday, April 15th, 7-8:15pm:  New York City: What Can We Do After Getting a COVID-19 Vaccination?  Hosted by State Sen Liz Krueger with Dr. Celine Gounder, Infectious Disease Specialist and Epidemiologist at NYU Grossman School of Medicine and Bellevue Hospital, CNN medical analyst and former Biden Transition COVID advisor.   Dr. Gounder will share info on the impact of the COVID vaccines on contracting and transmitting the virus, variants, public health and reopening, as well as what activities reasonable to resume post-vaccination.  On zoom and Facebook.  To RSVP

Monday, April 19th, 6:30-8pm:  2021 NYC Mayoral Candidate Forum – A New Vision for Parks & Open Space.
New Yorkers for Parks and Play Fair Coalition host/grill mayoral candidates on their positions on/plans for our NYC Parks.  To RSVP

Until Thursday, April 22nd, 6:30-7:30pm:  “World of Wonders” Conversation Series.  Hosted by the Randall’s Island Park Alliance Literary Club with poet Aimee Nezhukumatathil giving insights into her writing as she’s discovers the natural wonders of Randall’s Island Park!!Free. For details and to register

Upcoming live-and-in-person events, too:

Thursday, April 22nd, 10am-12pm: EARTH DAY Volunteer Litter Pick-Up On Our Esplanade. Hosted by the great Green Park Gardeners NYC and Esplanade Friends, 20 lucky volunteers will be putting a clean and even more inviting face on our wonderful Esplanade!! GPG/Friends provide disposable gloves, grabbers, and trash bags!!  You provide your over-18-year old self in mask, good walking shoes, sunscreen and ready to sign the usual insurance waiver!! Meet at the Esplanade’s 71st Street entrance with groups cleaning their way both north and south. To reserve one of those coveted 20 places, email Stacy Papas at executivedirector@esplanadefriends.org!!

Saturday, May 11th, 11am:  High Bridge Walking Tour.  Be one of the lucky ten touring this 1848 and once-upon-a-time essential part of moving water into NYC from the Croton Aqueduct.  Led by bridge restoration project chief Bryan Diffley.  Organized by the great NYC H2O.  $30.  To reserve your place… 

And offering both virtual and live:

Throughout March:  At the Mount Vernon Hotel Museum.  Walking tours, virtual workshops and lunchtime lectures!!  Lovely choices all

All over the map diversions: 

What our NYS Forest Rangers’ve been up to of late… Check out the Northern Flicker…  That leaky, absurdly poisonous FL pond? Plenty more across our USA…    NYC cavalier spaniel (and their humans) meet-ups…  Reducing – if not zeroing out –  our spring bear contact...  Research your Hungarian roots assisted by experts from the National Archives of Hungary….  The Saudis and bottles…  Bottles and the curbside recycling effect…  1,000 dolphins…  More UES development...?  Bumblebee facts…  EV charging facts

And worthy of special note:

Erstwhile UES CM and now totally effective CEO of the Riverside Park Conservancy Dan Garodnick is out with a new and NYC-centric book, Saving Stuyvesant Town: How One Community Defeated the Worst Real Estate Deal in History… 

Catching up with the Hudson River Almanac:

3/24 – Brooklyn, New York City: Residents of Greenpoint in Brooklyn reported spotting three dolphins swimming southbound in the East River. Photos and a video were sent to the New York Marine Rescue Center as well as the Atlantic Marine Conservation Society, both on Long Island. They were identified as young short-beaked common dolphins (Delphinus delphis), frequent visitors to our marine waters year-round. – Tom Lake

Short-beaked common dolphins
Those Dolphins

[The list of Hudson River estuary marine mammals documented in the Hudson River Almanac across the last 27 years includes:

– Hooded seal (Cystophora cristata)
– Gray seal (Halichoerus grypus)
– Harp seal (Pagophilus groenlandicus)
– Harbor seal (Phoca vitulina)
– Short-beaked common dolphins (Delphinus delphis)
– Risso’s dolphin (Grampus griseus)
– Common (bottlenose) dolphin (Tursiops truncatus)
– Common (harbor) porpoise (Phocoena phocoena)
– Florida manatee (2006) (Trichechus manatus latirostris)
– Minke whale (2007) (Balaenoptera acutorostrata)
– humpback whale (2016) (Megaptera novaeangliae)

3/24 – Manhattan, New York City, HRM 2: Our Hudson River Park’s River Project Staff checked the sampling and collection gear that we deploy off Pier 40 in Hudson River Park. Though the weather had been warming up, our aquatic acquaintances were still sluggish with only a handful of grass shrimp (shore shrimp) and isopods present.- Justin Siddhartha Hayes

3/26 – Manhattan, New York City: The air temperature reached 82 degrees F today establishing a new record high for the date. –  National Weather Service

And the Fish of the Week is:

3/23 – Hudson River Watershed: Fish-of-the-Week for Week 113 is the Spanish mackerel(Scomberomorus maculatus), number 216 (of 234), on our Hudson River Watershed List of Fishes. 

Spanish mackerel
A Couple of Spanish Mackerels

The Spanish mackerel is one of two members of its family (Scombridae) in the watershed. The more common species is the Atlantic mackerel (Scomber scombrus). They are found along the east coast from Cape Cod to Florida but tend to be less common north of Chesapeake Bay. Growing to 11 pounds, they feed on small fish, shrimp, and squid.

Spanish mackerel was added to our Hudson River list of fishes in 1989 with two collected in the Tappan Zee near Piermont. For the next decade, they were uncommon to rare in the estuary. Then, on August 25, 1999, legendary riverman Bob Gabrielson was fishing under the Tappan Zee Bridge. He pulled up his short gill net, intended for Atlantic menhaden to bait his blue crab pots, and found two adult Spanish mackerel, each 25-inches-long and weighing 4.0 pounds. The river was warm (78 degrees F) and salty (12.8 ppt.).

Twenty years later, September 3, 2019, with Spanish mackerel continuing to be uncommon to rare in the estuary, DEC Region 3 Hudson River Fisheries Unit caught five young-of-year Spanish mackerel in their seine at Philipse Manor (river mile 28). The salinity was 8.4 ppt.

Summer 1989 was memorable for its hundred-year drought that warmed the river and increased the salinity. It became a season when several other uncommon to rare marine fishes were caught in the estuary. These included the scrawled cowfish, highfin goby, the lookdown, crevalle jack, inshore lizardfish, and Atlantic thread herring. -Tom Lake

(Inshore lizardfish, indeed!)

Evergreenly,

UGS

Eco Fact of the Week:  Japan’s cherry blossoms hit earliest peak bloom in 1,200 years!!

2021 Compost collected at 96th & Lex (from 4/2/2021) 2 Large Bins & 55 Drop-Offs 
2020 TOTALS (from 1/9/20-3/25/20):    294 bags;  12,522 lbs
2019 TOTALS:    43,417 POUNDS   (21.7 TONS)
2018 TOTALS:    23,231 POUNDS  (11.65 TONS)

Eco Tip of the Week:  Recycle those batteries – in Zip Lock bags – at Best Buy, 86th and Lex!!

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Dear UESiders,

Happy April!!  Happy 3-day weekend!! Happy pretty darned okay Saturday/Sunday weather!!

Going to be somewhat brief this week but had to spread the following, totally happy and great news items:


#1. 
As of Thursday, April 1st:  Green Park Gardeners’ Compost Collection Returns!!
The East River Esplanade at 62nd Street

Yes, you stalwart UESiders who’ve been storing months of food scraps in your freezers or making weekly journeys to the likes of Union Square, GPG’s drop-off bins are now back in place on the Esplanade at 62nd Street!!  (Also meaning there’ll also soon be UES-created compost for our UES gardens!!) 

#2.  Every Friday Commencing Friday, April 2nd: East 96th Compost  Collection Returns!!
SE Corner of 96th Street & Lexington Avenue, Fridays, 7:30-11:30am

Yes, it’s on a different day of the week, but this ever-so-convenient, on-your-way-to-work site – adjacent to Lex/6 entrances – is back!!  (Giving you, too, a chance to have your pic snapped dropping off en route to the wedding chapel!!) 

May be an image of 2 people, people standing, people smiling and outerwear

May 2019


Can’t wait to be citing how many bins/bags are filled every Friday!!

#3.  Saturday, April 3rd:  82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket

      82 Street between First & York Avenues, 9am-2pm 


With us will be our great year-round farmers/bakers/fisherman friends American Pride Seafood, Bread Alone, Ballard’s Honey, and  Samascott, Ole Mother Hubbert, Valley Shepherd,  Hawthorne Valley, Gajeski and Walnut Ridge Farms!!

Okay, the Duck Guy’s still MIA, but… 

AND…

Ultra Mega Market Manager Margaret adds the very excellent news flashes:

Dear Greenmarketeers:

This Saturday and just in time for holiday bonnets and table gorgeousness,  Sikking Flowers returns to 82nd Street for the spring/summer/fall season!!

Plus… And it’s big…

We’ll be re-rounding out 82nd’s menu options with the addition of Haywood’s Fresh, our great, new a new beef and pork producer!! Farmers Mark and Kaleb are pretty darned excited to be joining our great market…  So do stop by and say hello and welcome to the UESide!!

More farmers always means more shoppers at 82nd….  So do continue to keep those masks, along with an eye out for the social distance markings on the ground.

Lastly… 

For those of you who have cars or know someone who does,  please-please-please remember that we need street space to set the market up…  So the fewer cars parking on the west end of 82nd, the better!! 

Just a few hours on one day of the week. people!!  Not to mention, it’s for the benefit and safety of the whole neighborhood!!

Great shopping and a wonderful Easter, 

Margaret


Some activism of course:

If you should have an opinion on Northwell’s proposed 77th Street hospital

How – unlike NYC and our Parks Department  – some American cities are approaching their public spaces and compost

Virtual events to keep in mind:

At Your Convenience:  Live From Schurz Park – Native Bees.  Introduced by Master Horticulturist, Banford Weissmann, who recently worked with The American Museum of Natural History to document the park’s bee population!!   A lot of knowledge shared in 4 short minutes!!  To watch… 


The Month of April:  Municipal Art Society Virtual Tours.  From Staten Island to Brooklyn to Lower Manhattan!!  Members, $15.  Non-members, $25.   Check ’em out...

Monday, April 5th – Wednesday, April 14th:  CM Kallos’ 2021 Virtual Participatory Budget Vote.  Scroll way down and choose which worthy district projects deserve to share $1M NYC bucks.  For the ballot...   (As involved as UGS’s in all things plant and trees, we suggest this year bucks are better spent on concerns human than on such a small sprinkling of saplings and guards.)  

Tuesday, April 6th, 2-4pm:  AM Seawright’s Weekly Virtual Knitting Social.  Meet folks from all around the hood…  Chat…  Make new friends…  Knit, have your knitting be admired and be inspired by others’ needlework!!  All you need to do is RSVP!!

Wednesday, April 7th, 2-3pm:  Botany Plants Lately – Horticulture Knowledge Share and Craft.  Hosted by folks at the NYPL Edenwald Branch and answering eternal question like why the leaves on that plant you love  are turning yellow…  Or maybe you have tips to share as to how you keep your plant leaves so big, green and healthy? Ask!  Share!  Learn!  Beginners and long time plant parents are welcomed.  During our discussion we will be making plant ID cards to better help your plants health.   Free.  For more and to register

Thursday, April 8th, 6:30-7:30pm:  Drawing the Wonders of a Wetland.  Hosted by the Randall’s Island Park Alliance Literary Club and we quote, “Whether you keep a drawing notebook or just want to learn some new sketching skills, come join artist and horticulturist Rebecca Allan for an evening of exploring Randall’s Island through drawing inspired by the book “World of Wonders: In Praise of Fireflies Whales Sharks, and Other Astonishments” by Aimee Nezhukumatathil.”  Free.  For details and to register… 

Tuesday, April 13th, 7pm:  Bicycling with Butterflies.   Hosted by Monarch Watch, its great Director Chip Taylor and The Raven Book Store.  Author and outdoor educator Sara Dykman – the first person to bicycle the entire monarch migration route – shares her rich, utterly unique experiences.  Free.  For more and to sign up

Until Thursday, April 22nd, 6:30-7:30pm:  “World of Wonders” Conversation Series.  Hosted by the Randall’s Island Park Alliance Literary Club with poet Aimee Nezhukumatathil giving insights into her writing as she’s discovers the natural wonders of Randall’s Island Park!!
Free. For details and to register

Even our chocolate Easter bunnies are green, 

UGS


Eco Fact of the Week:  West Coast cities like Seattle and San Jose just passed prohibitions on gas hookups to new buildings.

Eco tip of the Week:  Those soft drink can tabs?  Snap them off, collect a bunch and take to Ronald McDonald House, 405 East 73rd Street!!  (Somehow, someway they’re used for fundraising!!)  

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Dear UESiders, 

Happy 60-70-80 degree weather!!  Add to that aa actual Greenmarket Saturday without rain!! 

Speaking of the Greenmarkets:

Saturday, March 13th:  82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket
82 Street between First & York Avenues, 9am-2pm 

At their tables will be American Pride Seafood, Bread Alone, Ballard’s Honey, and Samascott, Ole Mother Hubbert, Nolasco, Valley Shepherd, Hawthorne Valley, Gajeski and Walnut Ridge Farms!!

(Still no Duck Guy!!) 


But our most excellent Market Manager TuTu’s advises:

Dear Greenmarketeers:

Happy to say all our wonderful farmers/bakers/fisherman are expected to be at tomorrow’s market!!

Add to that good news that Gajeski will have fresh horseradish for folks needing it  for their Passover meals!!

AND…

Hawthorne Valley will be well stocked with delicious hot cross buns for Easter enjoyment!!
 
Not forgetting you Winter warriors!!  Continue to check with us at the Info Tent!!
 
Very safe and happy shopping,

TuTu


Adding to the good news:

So great that not only are an increasing number of tech companies waking up to the recyclability/monetary value of key lithium-ion battery materials for sustainable “reintroduction” but are acting not only to get those recyclable materials actually recycled but put to use in new devices!!  (Way to go, HP!!)

The governor’s proposed updating NYS’s  appliance efficiency standards and align our building codes with the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act!!

Plus the NYS DEC’s asking for improved regs for our Wildlife Protection Areas

UES classic Two Little Red Hens plans to reopen at a new and larger location!!

May be an image of text that says 'How to make your cat look more active.'

(Thanks to Jack Donaghy)

But on the not so great score:

Despite all but unanimous local opposition, the proposed Blood Center high rise plan advances

Who knew there was once a manufactured gas plant site on York and 62/63…??  Which decades later has NYS asking for public comment about a possible clean up…!!

Time for some activism:

Should you wish NYC powers-that-be to adequately fund our public libraries in this year’s budget… 

Yes, the proposed NY Blood Center’s upward expansion powers on despite growing community-wide opposition.  However and most  mysteriously, given the substantial shade a 16-story structure would cast on the adjacent St. Catherine’s Park, it’s supported by the “Friends of St. Catherine’s Park”…   

Ever more and better virtual events (including one you/yourself/you can design):

NYC H2O’s offering a host of virtual Water Ecology and Engineering Courses for Grades 2 to 12!!  Free.  To check out classes/dates/times and sign up those young’uns

At Your Convenience:  Live From Carl Schurz Park, Episode 1.  Premiering with Park Stewardship presented by gardener Diantha Shull.  Soon to be followed by Native Bees with Schurz’s Master Horticulturist, Banford Weissmann and then, Chapter 3 withSusan Hewitt, renowned expert on algae, fungi, mosses, lichens and ferns, who’ll speak about the amazingly diverse Lower Plants found in Carl Schurz Park!!  Free.  To watch… 

Tuesday, March 30th, 7pm:  Subways & Reefs – Sea Turtles on the 7.  Hosted by the great NYC H2O.  As we noted a month or so ago, those 1,300 over-the-hill subway cars we/NYC/MTA donated in 1999 to form a foundation for much needed  reefs…  Well, fast forward to 2021 and you can join Bob Martore, Artificial Reef Coordinator for the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources to learn all the good those cars have done for sea life along America’s East Coast!!  Free.  To learn more and register

Before March 31st: Submit Your Own Jane’s “Walk”.  And we quote:  “Inspired by urban activist Jane Jacobs, Jane’s Walk is a free volunteer-led festival of collective neighborhood storytelling that generates conversation about urban life and celebrates our city’s vibrant past, present, and future. This year, the Municipal Art Society’s gathering a roster of virtual activities and self-guided strolls that’ll explore every corner of the five boroughs.”  And our UES is so history and culture rich!!  For full details, application assistance and to sign up… 

Tuesday, April 6th, 2-4pm:  CM Seawright’s Weekly Virtual Knitting Social.  Meet folks from all around the hood…  Chat…  Make new friends…  Knit, have your knitting be admired and be inspired by others’ needlework!!  All you need to do is RSVP!!

Thursday, April 8th, 6:30-7:30pm:  Drawing the Wonders of a Wetland
.  Hosted by the Randall’s Island Park Alliance Literary Club and we quote, “Whether you keep a drawing notebook or just want to learn some new sketching skills, come join artist and horticulturist Rebecca Allan for an evening of exploring Randall’s Island through drawing inspired by the book “World of Wonders: In Praise of Fireflies Whales Sharks, and Other Astonishments” by Aimee Nezhukumatathil.”  Free.  For details and to register… 

Tuesday, April 13th, 7pm:  Bicycling with Butterflies.   Hosted by Monarch Watch, its great Director Chip Taylor and The Raven Book Store.  Author and outdoor educator Sara Dykman – the first person to bicycle the entire monarch migration route – shares her rich, utterly unique experiences.  Free.  For more and sign up

Thursday, April 22nd, 6:30-7:30pm:  “World of Wonders” Conversation Series.  Hosted by the Randall’s Island Park Alliance Literary Club with poet Aimee Nezhukumatathil giving insights into her writing as she’s discovers the natural wonders of Randall’s Island Park!!
. Free. For details and to register…

View of Central Park from 145CPN

The View From Central Park North

Now for some diverting diversions:

2020 Covid era weddings above the tree line…  NY Presbyterian’s free online vegetarian cookbook…  NYC’s last wooden/car-crossable bridge…  An opossum returns to the wild… Analysis of NYC’s first multi-family passive housing…  Dolphins in our East River…  Socializing a feral kitten…   A not-so micro micro apartment…  Seaweed and cattle…  Miami Beach and its palm trees… This winter’s effect on fish…   Further on the good-looking, well-built, green public housing everybody but the U.S./NYC is building… 

Then a pretty darned sobering note: 

Landfill pollutants ranked by toxicity…   (And we all know how much landfill NYC dumps on/in this earth…) 

Good moment for some Hudson River Almanac cheer:

3/13 – Brooklyn:  Heading northbound along the southern end of Flatbush Avenue, I suddenly noticed a fellow northbound traveler silhouetted in the odd lighting. Its sheer size was unmistakable–a bald eagle. Glimpses of the bird’s white head and tail were barely visible. As I merged onto the eastbound entrance ramp of the Belt Parkway, the bird dipped and banked, revealing the unmistakable white head and tail of an adult bird. Though eagle sightings are much more common than just a decade ago, I can never get over the thrill of seeing them within the city limits. – Dave Taft

3/14 – Brooklyn, New York City: I was at about the same spot along Flatbush Avenue where I saw the bald eagle yesterday, except this time I traveled along the southbound side. As I made my way into another day of work on a very early Sunday morning, I passed what could only be the body of a striped skunk lying on the southbound road shoulder of Flatbush Avenue. Noting the location, I made a U-turn to be absolutely certain it was not someone’s unfortunate cat. When I arrived, the animal’s white stripes and thick-furred tail could belong to nothing else, and the slight scent of “Eau du skunk” sealed its identity. The creature’s lovely white stripes and jet-black fur were a sad visual joke, a New Yorker cartoon in the flesh, set against the white hatched shoulder of the black asphalt road.

I have seen very few skunks in the five boroughs of New York City, almost all dead along Staten Island roadways. And, though I have seen one or two skunks in the Bronx, the Long Island boroughs of Brooklyn and Queens always seemed to be skunks’ final frontier within New York City. – Dave Taft

3/17 – Manhattan:  Hudson River Park’s River Project Staff checked the sampling and collection gear that we deploy off Pier 40 in Hudson River Park. While our traps were empty today, we are eager to see what they will bring us as the weather gets warmer. In these times of empty nets, it seems like we are experiencing early April Fools days. However, as scientists, we know that an important tenet of research is: No data is still data. – Toland Kister, Anna Koskol, Marika Krupitsky

3/20 – Hudson River: The vernal equinox is a global, astronomical phenomenon when spring comes to the Northern Hemisphere and autumn arrives in the Southern Hemisphere. It is a magical concept when you think of it. The Sun was exactly above the Equator today, day and night were of equal length.

We have taken SUNY anthropology students several times to a site on the equator near Otavalo, Ecuador. Our GPS registered 00º 00′ 0″ (degrees, minutes, seconds) latitude and with the sun directly overhead, we cast no shadow. Straddling the equator, students had the unique opportunity to stick one arm into springtime and the other arm into autumn. – Tom Lake

Closing with fave Fish of the Week:

3/18 – Fish-of-the-Week for Week 112 is the spotfin killifish (Fundulus luciae),number 119 (of 234) on our Hudson River Watershed List of Fishes. 

Spotfin killifish

A Spotfin Killfish

The spotfin killifish is one of five killifishes (Fundulidae) in the watershed, including the more common eastern banded killifish (Fundulus diaphanus diaphanus), mummichog (F. heteroclitus), and striped killifish (F. majalis).

The spotfin killifish (Fundulus luciae) occurs in salt and brackish marshes of the east coast of the United States from Georgia to Massachusetts. The species was added to our Hudson River Watershed list of fishes on August 31, 2000, as species number 210 (at the time). David Yozzo, Marco Cianciola, and Seth Painka were seining the Crumkill, a small tidewater tributary near Piermont Marsh in Rockland County, when they caught three juvenile spotfin killifish (18-32 mm). Although the specimens were juveniles, they indicated a reproducing population in the Piermont Marsh area. Being very secretive, they were probably there all along. – Tom Lake

[Living in coastal marshes, the spotfin killifish is threatened by sea levelrise. They are already experiencing the effects of climate change as coastal marshes experience greater tidal fluctuations and more frequent storm surges. This emblematic of the perils facing fish biodiversity around the globe. Spotfin killifish can withstand the fluctuating conditions associated with the salt marsh surface and have been found squirming from pool to pool between Spartina reeds in as little as 10 mm of water.

Small but mighty with an average length of 50 mm, the spotfin killifish has endured three centuries of human alteration to their preferred habitat, including anthropogenic mosquito ditching, tidal restrictions, and coastal development. However, only time will tell if they can adapt to the rapidly accumulating effects of climate change. – Jason Vokoun, American Fisheries Society

May your Passover be happy and green,   
  
UGS

Eco Fact of the Week:  Bottom trawling by commercial fishermen may unleash as much carbon as air travel, according to new research on marine conservation.

Eco tip of the Week:  Pop those clean mascara wands into the mail to Appalachian WIldlife, P.O. Box 824, Candler NC 28715

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Happy Spring 2021, UESiders!!

Now, if only this weather of ours–

Oh, let’s just focus on the happy stuff…


Commencing with:

*U.S. Energy produced from renewable sources have now surpassed that of coal!! 

*Further on that point, check out this fun and info packed news clip on solar’s transformation of an Arkansas school system


Remaining on that good foot with out great market:

Saturday, March 13th:  82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket

82 Street between First & York Avenues, 9am-2pm 

With us will be American Pride Seafood, Bread Alone, Ballard’s Honey, and Samascott, Ole Mother Hubbert, Nolasco, Valley Shepherd, Hawthorne Valley, Gajeski and Walnut Ridge Farms!!

Hey, Duck Guy!!  Get back to your table!!  (Please!!)


Market Manager Alta Suprema Margaret weighs in:

Dear Greenmarketeers:

I guess the message this week is “no news is good news”.

We’re expecting a nice weekend of spring-like weather and the same great line-up of farmers/bakers/fishermen as last week…

With the most welcome addition of 1857 Vodka!!

Which is to say, this is the week to stock up on locally distilled spirits for the fast-approaching holidays.   (Pretty darned nice to have a product you can buy now and enjoy whenever the mood suits you, right??)

Stay tuned (at social distance and masked) for spring seasonal updates that’ll be coming soon!!


Happy. healthy shopping,

Margare
t

And now for a healthy dollop of post-St. Patrick’s Day activism:

If you think our U.S. Senators and Representative should support the BUILD GREEN Infrastructure and Jobs Acts

For you who haven’t signed the GrowNYC Compost petition

For those who’ve been wondering about the why and how of the proposed sale of our hood’s landmarked Irish Historical Society, NYS AG James is now looking into it… 

Further on NYC’s (many) endangered historic structures:  Should you support preservation of the Penn Station Powerhouse… 

Blockchain’s possible positive effect on our ever bigger waste problems…  And becoming ever more pressing among our urban waste troubles are…  And then there’s the upcoming NYC commercial waste overhaul… 

Then there’s the state of our air…  



 
Lunch for One Happy Squirrel

And one great bunch of virtual gatherings:



Wednesday, March 23rd, 7pm:  Reacquaint Yourself with the Native & Urban Trees of Roosevelt Island on zoom.  Organized by the great iDig2Learn and hosted by Master Naturalist Carey Russell, refresh your appreciation and identification skills of our local tree species just in time for spring!!  Think ID tips and challenges and trends of urban trees throughout NYC’s history, too!!  Great for beginners and naturalists looking for a refresher!!  (Of course, RI and the UES share the same tree species…)  Free.  To register: iDig2Learn@gmail.com
 

Thursday, March 25th, 11am-12pm:  Ants!!  Hosted by the great Roosevelt Island IDIG2Learn and with guest speaker Chris Johnson of the  American Natural History Museum where she cares for and is digitizing the museum’s millions of invertebrate specimens!!  She’s also achieved prominence via her study of interactions between ant social parasites and their ant hosts!!  (Incredible, yes??!!)  Free. To register: iDig2Learn@gmail.com
 
   
Thursday, March 25th, 2-4pm:  AM Seawright’s Virtual Knitting Social.  Doesn’t get more locally companionable and soothing than this bi-weekly zoom gathering.  Come one, come all, men and women!!  To sign up… 


Friday, March 26th, 6:30-7:30pm:  Making Paella with Coqui the Chef.  Just in time for National Paella Day!!   Learn to make paella and about the plants behind the classic dish!!  Plus one lucky guest will win a free paella kit and cooking class!!  (FYI, Tania Lopez, founder of Coqui the Chef, is listed in the New York Magazine’s “The Strategist” as conducting the Best Online Cooking Classes!!)    Free.  To sign up

Thursday, March 25th, 1:30pm:  Water & Oceans – Restoring the Lifeblood of the Planet.   Hosted by the NYTimes and with a legion of experts slated to address the subject.  Free.  For details and to register… 

Tuesday, April 13th, 7pm:  Bicycling with Butterflies.   Hosted by Monarch Watch, its great Director Chip Taylor and The Raven Book Store.  Author and outdoor educator Sara Dykman – the first person to bicycle the entire monarch migration route – shares her rich, utterly unique experiences.  Free.  For more and sign up

On to some new diversions:

A daily word quiz from Word Genius…  Shakespeare returns to Central Park…  If public housing can be great looking in France, why not NYC…  Spring cleaning tips courtesy of Consumer Reports…  Resilient house construction…  The week for our NYS Conservation Officers…  How to become a NYS Wildlife Rehabilitator…  Under the heading “Women’s Work Is Never Done”…  NYC eagle 26 years later…  Oldest manhole cover in NYC?…  Preparations are on for the 2021 Salamander and Frog Migration…  Aonline falconry course…  The Smithsonian’s Daily Antidote of Song

And the latest Hudson River Almanac installment:

3/10 – Manhattan, HRM 2: Our Hudson River Park’s River Project Staff checked the sampling and collection gear that we deploy off Pier 40 in Hudson River Park and discovered that we had captured our first fish of 2021, a gorgeous juvenile tautog (80 millimeters).  -Siddhartha Hayes


 Tautog
A Tautog

[Tautog (Tautoga onitis), is a rather common, bottom-dwelling fish of New York Harbor. Their colloquial name, blackfish, refers to the adults as they attain a deep and mottled coal black color. Among their favorite foods are shellfish that they find in abundance in near-shore rocky areas. In the spirit of “you are what you eat,” blackfish, perhaps owing to their shellfish diet, are a sought-after food fish. – Tom Lake]

3/6 – Manhattan:  Recently, our Hudson River Park’s River Project Staff checked the sampling and collection gear that we deploy off Pier 40 in Hudson River Park and found a myriad of wintering shore shrimp, amphipods, and the occasional isopod in our minnow traps.  – Toland Kister, Anna Koskol and Olivia Radick

And the Fish of the Week is:


3/9 – Hudson River Watershed: Fish-of-the-Week for Week 111 is the American freshwater goby (Ctenogobius shufeldti), number 209 (of 234, on our Hudson River Watershed List of Fishes.

American freshwater goby
A Freshwater Goby
 
The American freshwater goby plays two roles this week: First, as our fish-of-the-week and, secondly, as an introduction to a new species, number 234, for the Hudson River watershed.

The American freshwater goby is one of five gobies (Gobiidae) in the watershed. This specimen (40 mm) was collected in Mill Creek, a tributary of the Hackensack River, a tributary of the Upper Bay of New York Harbor in 2014. The specimen was overlooked until 2019 when Bob Schmidt learned of its presence in a collection and was able to make the identification. Bob Schmidt and Brett Bragin then collaborated in publishing a journal article announcing the species in the Hudson River watershed. – Schmidt, Robert E., and Brett Bragin

In its native range, low-salinity waters of bays and estuaries from North Carolina to Florida and west to Texas, the American freshwater goby often enters fresh water and is classified as an estuarine species.

It is unknown how this fish arrived here. It may have been an aquarium release, or the Gulf Stream carried it as larvae north from Florida. For the Hudson River watershed, however, unless we discover a spawning population, the American freshwater goby will be considered for the Hudson River as a tropical marine stray. 


Happy World Water Day (this coming Monday),

UGS




Eco Fact of the Week:  On February 25, 2021, World Wildlife Fund Mexico in collaboration with CONANP and the Monarch Butterfly Biosphere Reserve (MBBR) announced that the total forest area occupied by overwintering monarch colonies was 2.1 hectares, a 26% decrease from the previous season (For details: https:// archwatch.org/blog/2021/02/25/monarch-population-status-45/).

Eco tip of the Week:  Recycle your unused and/or out-of-date prescription drugs at CVS, 1396 Second Avenue or Duane Reade, 1498 York Avenue!! 

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Dear UESiders!!

Going to brief this week and commencing with two steam-from-ears inducing items, both involving historic preservation,,,  Or lack/failure of it:


*Ever been in the McGraw-Hill Building lobby??  A deco masterpiece and – thanks, Landmarks Commission – no more…

*Same for the Noguchi lobby at 666 Fifth…  

Kinda, sorta seeming like Landmarks isn’t remotely up to its job…

Moving and briskly onto the good foot:

*Until the The Times’ breakdown’s available, here’s The Patch on what NYC can expect from the Stimilus Bill…  

*For  sure, we all should be familiar with the basics of NYC Green Infrastructure and Incentive Programs and thanks to the great folks at SWIM we can be!!   For the lowdown

*summer internship for a high schooler  And two for undergrads or grads at the Mount Vernon Hotel Museum… 

*More great volunteer opportunities from the even greater GrowNYC…  (You, too, could be a GNYC volunteer of the month!!)

*Add the collection of first rate distance – i.e. online – learning opportunities – at least one for every age group – GrowNYC’s also offering!!  

But doesn’t get more cheerfulness-inspiring than our Greenmarket:

Saturday, March 13th:  82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket
82 Street between First & York Avenues, 9am-2pm 

At their mercifully well above 32 degrees and rain/snow free tables will be American Pride Seafood, Bread Alone, Ballard’s Honey and  Samascott, Ole Mother Hubbert, Nolasco, Valley Shepherd, Hawthorne Valley, Gajeski and Walnut Ridge Farms!!

Ahem…  Yes, our Duck Guy will be absent for yet another week…


Our Market Manager Supreme weighs in:

Dear Greenmarketeers, It’s a tough time of year for market news…  As we wait for spring, we’re all wanting there to be new – a veg pr fruit just come into season – to report…  But really there isn’t yet…  But just hold!!

In the meantime, of course, there’s no shortage of beautiful, delicious winter products – stuff we’ll all be craving in 3-4 months –  still available!!

But there’s this one news flash:

For all you Bread Alone fans:  We’re relocating their tent nearer to the schoolyard entrance!!  Reason:  So that they – and you – can have a dedicated line (like American Pride and Samascott).  So, be sure to look for them and the chalked line marked on the sidewalk!!

And, as ever, PLEASE remember your mask, to keep social distance and to be patient with and considerate of for you neighbors.

AND. hey, you Winter Warriors!!  Keep on checking in!!


Happy shopping and eating,

Margaret

Then there’s this newsletter first:  A NYS DEC Alert for the aquarium lovers among us:

The DEC is urging pet and aquarium stores and consumers to immediately remove and properly dispose of commercially purchased “moss balls” for aquariums.  Reason:  Invasive zebra mussels have been discovered inside and on some of these products.  For product details

The week’s activism opportunity:

Should you oppose construction of a huge underground (?) power plant adjacent to the NY upstate Ashokan Reservoir

Upcoming virtual events:

Monday, March 15th, 6:30pm:  Bryophytes of New York City- How I Started My Bryophyte Journey and What I Learned About Them. Presented by Zihao Wang on zoom.Hosted by the Upper West Side Neighborhood Naturalists and CB7 with noted, self-taught field botanist/rare plant expert Zihao Wang who’s collaborated with the NY Botanical Garden and NYC Parks to name just two.  (Bryophytes being mosses, liverworts and hornworts!!) (Great the variety of NYC plant people, yes?!!)  Free.  To sign up

Wednesdays & Thursdays, Commencing Wednesday, March 17th, 3:30-5pm:  Virtual Coastal Classroom After School.   Great and intriguing environmental science for middle schoolers by Cityparks.  Free.   For more and to register...  (And just scroll down for more teen Coastal virtual summer courses!!)

Wednesday, March 17th, 7pm:  Organic Waste Recycling in NYC on zoom.   Hosted by NYC Sierra Club with experts/speakers Kathryn Garcia, former Commissioner of Sanitation; Eric Goldstein, senior attorney and NYC Environmental Director of the Natural Resources Defense Council; and the Sierra Club’s Nathaniel Jones.  Q&A to follow.  Free.  To reserve your place… 

Wednesday, March 24th, 7pm:  Reacquaint Yourself with the Native & Urban Trees of Roosevelt Island on zoom.   Organized by the great iDig2Learn and hosted by Master Naturalist Carey Russell, refresh your appreciation and identification skills of our local tree species just in time for spring!!  Think ID tips and challenges and trends of urban trees throughout NYC’s history, too!!  Great for beginners and naturalists looking for a refresher!!  (Of course, RI and the UES share the same tree species…)  Free.  To register

At Your Convenience: Commencing Wednesday, March 24th:  Inside the Abandoned Bowery and Canal Subway Stations webinar.  Another great Untapped Tour outing.  $10.  For details and to schedule

Tuesday, March 30th, 6:30pm:  Subway Reefs: Sea Turtles on the 7 on zoom.   Hosted by great NYC H2O,  Bob Martore, Artificial Reef Coordinator for the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources,, will show how those decrepit subway cars the MTA donated some 20 years ago are now happy homes to a thriving offshore ecosystem!!  Free (but donations of any size welcome)…  For more and to register

April 13th-15th:  The 2021 Virtual NYS Organics Summit. Hosted by the NYS DEC.   Knowledge is power, yes…  And no better way to get into the know about who’s who in state and local organics.  Free.  For day-by-day session and sign up for them…   

Plus a cluster of actually actual events:

Weekends, Mid-April to Mid-June:  Spring Track & Field at Thomas Jefferson and Soundview Parks.   Open to kids 10-16.  Free but space is limited.  Free with equipment provided.  For Thomas Jefferson…  And Soundview

There’s also:

The Randall’s Island Park Alliance’s Jesse Owens Track Program for ages 10-16

Let’s be diverted:

Wyoming’s transition from coal to wind…    The Appleheads Exhibition coming soon to Schurz Park…  Dogsledding makes a NYS comeback…  The dimming future for landfill sites (even in the likes of MS)…  Wilderness rescues and snowmobile accidents on NYS Forest Ranger menu…  The lowdown on invasive knotweed…  FabBRICS…  A peak inside the temporary Frick…  Women’s History Month at the NYS DEC…  Most helpful kitchen tools courtesy of Consumer Reports…  March NYC public art installations to see…   A pair – one and two – of interesting obits…  NYTimes recommended science podcasts…  The rebirth of the foyer…  And The Times weighs in – and then some –  on Bill Gates’ new book…  5 red panda facts

Red Panda Facts for Kids | Red Pandas | Cute Red Panda Photos
A Red Panda

And from the Hudson River Almanac:

2/26 – Yonkers, HRM 18: We caught our first glass eel today at the Sarah Lawrence Center for the Urban River at Beczak. This seminal moment, however, had to share the day with a single comb jelly (ctenophore) we found floating in a small pool of water next to our fyke net.  

Leidy's comb jelly
That Glass Jelly

My initial examination of the comb jelly suggested sea gooseberry (Pleurobrachia pilus). Ken Gosner (1971;1978) gives some support to that possibility. However, Boyce Thompson’s estuarine research (1977) failed to find the species in the lower estuary. A bit more prosaic possibility might be Leidy’s comb jelly (Mnemiopsis leidyi). They had been present at Yonkers all summer and fall. Gillian Stewart (Queens College-CUNY) points to “a lot of evidence from Chesapeake Bay that ctenophores are increasing in local estuaries and staying around for winter because the water is not getting as cold as it used to be.” Salinity has been running unusually high for this time of the year; it was at least 14.3 parts-per-thousand(ppt) today. The water temperature was 37.4 degrees Fahrenheit(F). – Jay Muller

On to the Fish of the Week (with a really nice name):

2/20 – Hudson River Watershed: Fish-of-the-Week for Week 109 is the northern stargazer (Astroscopus guttatus), number 204 (of 233), on our Hudson River Watershed List of Fishes.

Northern stargazer
A Stargazer

The northern stargazer, also known as the “electric” stargazer, is the only member of its family (Uranoscopidae) in the watershed. Their common name “stargazer” is an example of clever nomenclature for common names; similarly, our common loon (Gavia immer) is known in Europe as the Great Northern Diver. Very appropriate choice in both instances.

Stargazers are a marine species found from New York south to Virginia. In the estuary, they are classified as a temperate marine stray and are uncommonly caught in research and education gear. Most recently, July 14, 2020, at Dobbs Ferry (river mile 23), DEC Region 3 Hudson River Fisheries Unit staff Zoraida Maloney, Justin Herne, Russ Berdan, Emily Hickox, Tom Patwell, and Adam Haines, using a 200 x 10-foot beach seine, caught a young-of-year (30 millimeters(mm)) northern stargazer. As an adult, the northern stargazer can grow to 22-inches and weigh 20 pounds.

Ichthyologist C. Lavett Smith calls the northern stargazer “a bizarre fish.” They have been fashioned by natural selection (chock full of favored traits) in the mode of the oyster toadfish and the goosefish. They have a nearly vertical mouth surrounded by fringed lips. Much of their body mass is in their head and they will eat pretty much whatever they can fit in their huge mouth. They bury themselves in the sand with their eyes and mouth sticking out just enough, aimed skyward (star-ward) and wait for prey. When something appealing swims by, the stargazer uses its large mouth to create a vacuum to suck it in.

Northern stargazers have an organ in their head that can deliver an electric charge that can stun prey and perhaps ward off predators. They can also produce a noticeable shock to anglers grasping their head to remove a fishhook, something to which I can attest. Their genus, Astroscopus, comes from Latin as one that “aims at the stars.” Their trivial name, guttatus, comes from Latin as “speckled,” as in raindrops. – Tom Lake

Can’t be greener than National Groundwater Awareness Week (which this is),

UGS

Eco Fact of the Week:   One more time so it really sinks in:  NYC spends $430 Million yearly on landfilling

Eco tip of the Week:  Don’t flush dental floss.  (It tangles up sewer function.)  Toss!!

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Dear UESiders, 

Alrighty then…  It’s good news time:

*Yes. there’s been the much-signed (23K-plus but totally ignored) petition asking the mayor to restore composting…  And generous but understandably limited moves by a few electeds (like CM Powers at Stuy Town) and green investment firm Closed Loop (Museum of 79th Street Greenmarket) to reinstate a few local Manhattan drop-off sites… 

BUT NOW AND AS THE 2022 BUDGET’S BEING NEGOTITATED…


*GrowNYC’s weighing in with 3 steps we UES Compost-iacs can to take to get organic collection back throughout our city, but most specifically at our 4 erstwhile UES sites (82nd and 92nd Greenmarkets, 70th Food Box, 96th & Lex Drop-Off)!!

Yes, it’ll take a good 5-10 minutes,
BUT…   Go for it, please!!

Further on the good news front:

*Thursday, March 25th:  Lower East Side Ecology Center opens up its  East River (Manhattan) Compost Yard for actual, live-and-in-person tours!!   Free.  Sign up for 11am-12pm or 2-3pm

*Recyclability’s having ever greater influence on packaging design and manufacture… 

*Add to your green resources the Hard to Recycle List” compiled by the great people at Upper West Side Recycling…  (They have a great newsletter, too!!)

*Volvo’s just announced its cars will be 100% electric by 2030!!

*Need help nailing that vax shot down?  CM Powers’ office is there to help…  (You can volunteer to be one of the helpers, too!!)

Then there’s the positivity of our wonderful market:

Saturday, March 6th:  82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket

82 Street between First & York Avenues, 9am-2pm 

At their frosty tables will be American Pride Seafood, Bread Alone, Ballard’s Honey, and Samascott, Ole Mother Hubbert, Nolasco, Valley Shepherd, Hawthorne Valley, Gajeski and Walnut Ridge Farms!!

But, yes, sorry to say The Duck Guy will be – by our lights – AWOL yet another week…

In the meantime, Mega Market Manager Margaret observes:


Dear Greenmarketeers:

March is here which means we’re just that much closer to spring!!  But while it’s still winter, let’s keep thinking soups and stews with the occasional salad…  And 82nd’s got the primo ingredients to cook up any and all!!

You Winter Warriors?!  Do remember to stop by  Manager TuTu’s info tent to get the word of the day so you can check in!!

And thanks to one and all for continuing to wear masks and being conscious of and keeping socially distant while you’re in the market!!

Happy. healthy shopping,

Margaret

Plenty of great upcoming virtual events:

Anytime/At Your Convenience:  Winter Tree Identification with Sam Bishop.   TreesNY expert Mr. Bishop gives an overview of our stalwart NYC trees’ unique characteristics so we arborial enthusiasts can broaden our knowledge of the greenery on our streets and in our parks…  And maybe even become an official NYC Tree Steward…    Free.  To watch…  

Wednesday, March 10th, 6:30pm:  “The Pollinators” Documentary Screening.   Hosted by the Natural Resource Defense Committee with panelists Peter Nelson, director/cinematographer of “The Pollinators” documentary; Susan Kegley, principal and CEO of the Pesticide Research Institute; Guillermo Fernandez, founder and executive director of The Bee Conservancy and moderated by Dan Raichel, acting director of NRDC’s Pollinator Initiative.  Free.  To register

Monday, March 15th, 6:30pm:  Bryophytes of New York City- How I Started My Bryophyte Journey and What I Learned About Them
Presented by Zihao Wang on zoom.Hosted by the Upper West Side Neighborhood Naturalists and CB7 with noted, self-taught field botanist/rare plant expert Zihao Wang who’s collaborated with the NY Botanical Garden and NYC Parks to name just two.  (Bryophytes being mosses, liverworts and hornworts!!) (Great the variety of NYC plant people, yes?!!)  Free.  To sign up

Wednesday, March 17th, 7pm: Organic Waste Recycling in NYC on zoom.   Hosted by NYC Sierra Club with experts/speakers Kathryn Garcia, former Commissioner of Sanitation; Eric Goldstein, senior attorney and NYC Environmental Director of the Natural Resources Defense Council; and the Sierra Club’s Nathaniel Jones.  Q&A to follow.  Free.  To reserve your place…  

Wednesday, March 23rd, 7pm:  Reacquaint Yourself with the Native & Urban Trees of Roosevelt Island on zoom.   Organized by the great iDig2Learn and hosted by Master Naturalist Carey Russell, refresh your appreciation and identification skills of our local tree species just in time for spring!!  Think ID tips and challenges and trends of urban trees throughout NYC’s history, too!!  Great for beginners and naturalists looking for a refresher!!  (Of course, RI and the UES share the same tree species…)  Free.  To register… 

Dipping into the Food-for-Thought/Activism File:

The absurd but typically wretched condition of NYCHA buildings includes those of our neighbors in the Isaacs-Holmes complex, First Ave, 92-95…  (This while Isaacs Center’s gearing up to deliver even more nutritious meals!!)  (They’re also looking for additional volunteer/meal deliverers…)

Meanwhile, CM Kallos would like to know your position on the Blood Center’s proposed expansion upward to a 334 height (and then also handling some mighty bad bugs)… 

Closer and closer to driving a stake through National Grid’s proposed pipeline across our harbor and Brooklyn storage facility heart thanks to all those petitions we’ve signed!!  To add your name to the latest

Many a NYS city and town have been designated/joined the ranks of Climate Smart Communities…  But not our NYC

For folks with places upstate, you could consider volunteering to assist migrating amphibians crossing roads


Image

Frog Moving Across Asphalt

Should you think it’d be good to speak up for the endangered Northern Spotted Owl

The possibly perilous fate of Governors Island as viewed by The Daily News and City Club of New York…  (Should you wish to comment…  Sign the petition…  Respond to Mr. Yang’s suggestion… )  

Let’s be diverted by some diversions:

Lost masterpiece painting found in NYC…   Best natural pet odor and stain removers….  Best of bird cams 2020Cuttlefish and self-control…  The Keys to the City Scavenger Hunt returns…  Dramatic cat rescue…  Discovering new bird species by ear…   How birds fall in love…  Get to know seahorses…  white squirrel heals…  NYS DEC Officers on the job…  Some cities have beautiful infrastructure…  Pan-fried gingko tree nuts, anyone??…  Or great-looking, heirloom purple vegetables??…

And then there’s this Porcupine Fact/Consolation: 

A porcupine‘s armor of around 30,000 barbed quills (!) will cause immense pain, yet a recipient of these spears can walk away without getting infected. This is because each quill is coated with antibiotics and has no poison or even irritate!!

Image

A Wintry Porcupine 

As NYC passes the 2.2M vax shot mark,

UGS

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized