Category Archives: Uncategorized

A Not-So Happy Endangered Species Day, UESiders…

If anyone missed last week’s UN report on the subject…  Read at least the first 4 (short paragraphs), the third of which says, “…it’s not too late to make a difference…”  

And, this weekend, here on our great city, many a New Yorker will be making some of that difference on this Saturday’s/Sunday’s It’s My Park Days!!

AND why not speak out in support of continuing the U.S. Endangered Species Act!!

As for the rest of the coming week:

Throughout the Month:  Movies in UES Parks

St. Catherine’s Park…   John Jay Park…  

Throughout the Month:  Free Mammograms 

Carter Burden Center…  

Saturday, May 18th:  82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket

82nd Street between First and York, 9am–2pm

Compost & Clothes Collection, 9am–1pm

At their tables  will be American Pride Seafood, Bread Alone, Sikking Flowers, Samascott, Ole Mother Hubbert, SunFed Beef,  Ballard Honey, Alewife, Valley Shepherd, Hawthorne Valley (with  Consider Bardwell items), Gayeski and Nolasco Farms!!

Then there’s there’re these updates from Market Manager Ciana:  “Spring’s in full swing at the market this week!!  Think rhubarb, asparagus, green garlic, and tender greens like lettuces, spinach and swiss chard, plus so much more!!  Keeping with the theme, look for Saturday’s cooking demo to be featuring – you guessed it – spring greens!! 
Last week we welcomed back Valley Shepard Creamery and their lovely selection of cheeses and yogurt…   This week we’ll be saying goodby to the wonderful Nolasco Farm (until their return in 2020)…  So come out and stock up on Nolasco’s delicious organic produce, lovely potted herbs and annual plants!!”

Last Week’s Recycling Totals –  64 lbs batteries;  11 lbs cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges;   1 pair eye glasses; 14 compost bins;  37 bags of clothes

Another 14 bin week!!

Saturday, May 18th & Sunday, May 19th:  The 9th Annual Vegetarian Food Festival

Metropolitan Pavillion, 125 West 18th Street, 11am-6pm

And we quote, “More than 100 plant- based food and lifestyle vendors will be on hand with a plethora of produce and products. You’ll also hear some incredible speakers, including plant-based doctors, authors, chefs, fitness professionals and more!! $15.   For info and tickets

Saturday, May 18th:  Spring Celebration at the Aycock Pavillion

60th Street  & the East River Esplanade, 1-4pm 

Spring season on our wonderful Esplanade begins with live music from Home Cookin’, ice cream treats, a ton of fun for kids and more!!  An Esplanade Friends’ event!!  For more and upcoming Saturday fun

Saturday, May 18th:  Stargazing on Roosevelt Island

Riverwalt Commons (grassy area between Duane Reade & Fuji East, behind the F Train station), 7-11pm

View and learn about the our NYC skies, guided by experts equipped with high-powered telescopes!!  Free but weather-dependent of course.  Just stroll by… 

Saturday, May 18th: University Harp Ensemble Concert

Trinity Baptist Church, 250 East 61st Street, 7pm

Six gifted young harpists and a world-class repetoire equals an evening of soothing spring evening sound!!  Free.  For full details

Sunday, May 19th:  It’s My Park Day at Isaacs Park 

Stanley Isaacs Park, First Avenue & 96th Street, 11:30am-3:30pm

Ready this much-loved and heavily-used playground/roller hockey rink/quiet seating public space to shine for the summer season!!  Think weeding, cultivation, applying compost/mulch and planting!!  Tools, gloves, kneepads, great refreshments and best company supplied!!   To sign on…   

Sunday, May 19th:  Greek Jewish Festival

280 Broome Street between Allen & Eldridge Streets, 12-6pm

For all our great city can sometimes seem to be losing character (especially where street fairs are concerned), it remains home to events like this one:  A celebration of the Romaniote and Sephardic heritage of Jewish immigrants from Greece!!  Think kosher Greek food,  homemade Greek pastries, traditional Greek dancing,  live Greek and Sephardic music and more!!  Be there!!  For more

Monday, May 20th:  World War I –  Its Impact, Its Aftermath, and Lasting Lessons for Today 

Roosevelt House, 47-49 East 65th Street, 6-8:30pm

A mini-symposium on the after effects of The Great War combined with a mini-symposium and lit reception.  Co-sponsored by AM Rebecca Seawright.  Free!  itothe For more and tickets (you need one)… 

Tuesday, May 21st:  Every Other Tuesday Knitting Social

AM Seawright’s Community Office, 1480 York Avenue between 78th & 79th, 2-4pm

Quote, “Join Neighborhood Knitters for Crafting and Conversation!!”  (As everyone who’s ever wielded a stitch holder knows, knitters do like to chat!!)  And we’re talking equal opportunity knitting/crocheting…  Come on, guys…  You’re welcome, too!!  And folks of all skill levels.  Just RSVP

Wednesday, May 22nd – Sunday, June 2nd:  2019 World Science Fair

Throughout the City

Science, yes, but totally accessible, mind-expanding and amazing fun…  Much in celebration of the Moon Landing’s 50th anniversary and the 100th anniversary of General Relativity!!   For this year’s extraordinary program line-up and to purchase advance tickets

Thursday, May 23rd:  2019 NYC Food Waste Fair

Brooklyn Navy Yard, 63 Flushing Avenue,  Building 77

And we quote:  “An interactive experience connecting food, beverage and hospitality professionals and home cooks alike with workshops forums, lectures and film on achieving zero food waste, sustainable waste management, on-site compostineg, anerobic digestion and very much more!!   (Encourage your favorite restauranteurs to attend!!)  Tickets, $20-$60  (Use “ILOVECOMPOST” for a 10% discount!!)  For complete details

Friday, May 24th:  Skate Night at Isaacs Park

Stanley Isaacs Park, First Avenue  96th Street, Family Session 4-5pm, Adult Session 5:30-7pm 

A great afternoon/evening outdoors and on roller skates AND complete with live DJ, jumbo games, some available skates for the skate-less and plenty more…  Just be sure to bring socks!!   Sponsored by CM Kallos.   Free!!   To reserve a place and skates

On the approach:

Saturday, May 26th:  Marble Hill Walking Tour

Meet at Broadway & 225th Street, 11am-1pm

Engineer Bryan Diffley, Project Manager of the High Bridge restoration leads a walk exploring construction of the NYC’s 19th Century Harlem Ship Canal!!  Organized by the great NYC H2O.  $30.  For more and to reserve your place

Saturday & Sunday, June 1st & 2nd:  Outdoor Fest 2019 – Campout on Staten Island

Henry Kaufman Campgrounds, Staten Island

Think camping out under the stars, a 5K night trail race, an ultra trail run, survival skills training, yoga, slacklining, stargazing with real telescopes and astronomers, live entertainment, available transportation and beer by Sierra Nevada!!  No kidding, the best campout!!  $40-$155.  For details and to sign up

Tuesday, June 4th:  Annual Manhattan Public Water Board Hearing

255 Greenwich Street, Eighth Floor, Room 8-S1S2, 2pm

Water rates, yes, but NYC water-centric organizations like SWIM are also focusing on our stormwater infrastructure – or lack thereof – situation. 

mamma duck

Always some worthy activism:

The EPA’s looking for public comment, so should you be opposed to the use of Roundup on crops let the agency know

And should you oppose the use of chainsaws in wilderness areas

And if you’re wanting NYS to address/put an end to buildings planned with giant mechanical voids…   

On to miscellaneous miscellany

Could it be that word – or they’ve been wearing blindfolds- of the abundance of sadly empty NYC store space hasn’t reached some developers…??

Consumer Reports on grocery stores with freshest produce…  (And another reason we shop Greenmarkets!!)

Ten secrets of the 42nd Street Library

And then there’s the secret of the Seattle landfill

How they fixed potholes in Pompeii

Less fuzzy than the norm, but…

Grumpy Cat’s moved on to feline heaven

Bird-friendly building legislation has recently been introduced at the FederalState, and City levels…  Bills aiming to address bird/window collisions, which NYC Audubon scientists estimate kills between 90,000-230,000 birds in New York City each year!! 

But then there’s the Hudson River Almanac:

Not only is there a Fish of the Week (below), but a runner-up… The near record-breaking size tiger muskie was reeled in last week:

5/7 – Town of Wappinger, HRM 67: Flowering dogwood (Cornus florida), a native species, was in full bloom acting as a brilliantly colorful segue to the last of the shadbush in the forest. A cursory check showed that the new oak leaves were now “the size of a squirrel’s ear.” – Tom Lake

Squirrel

Corn-Planting Harbinger Squirrel

[In the time before the arrival of Europeans to the Hudson Valley, the cultivation of maize, or corn, was important for Native People – in our watershed, Algonquian and Iroquoian-speakers. There is much lore regarding the time to plant corn. Ethnographic (oral) tradition among many Northeast Indian tribes suggested planting corn when the new oak leaves were the size of a squirrel’s ear. But, what is the size of a squirrel’s ear? One spring, I decided to find out. I spent the month of April driving around the Hudson Valley measuring the ears of road-killed gray squirrels. I measured 116 x 2 ears each. It turned out that the average “ear size” was 20.6 millimeters (mm), or 0.82 inches-long. This might apply to different oaks in different areas, but for the Hudson Valley, it may have been the white oak (Quercus alba). In most years, the prime date arrives in early May and is probably related to soil temperature, rainfall, and perhaps other factors. – Tom Lake]

5/4 – Dutchess County:  Flood tide had just begun this evening, and I was fishing with ten-pound test line for striped bass with a live river herring. Before long, I received a strong hit on my line that was like no striped bass I had ever encountered. Once landed, I realized that it was a tiger muskellunge. With no scale to weigh it, the best I could do was measure the fish: 48-inches-long. The tiger musky was released in good condition. – William Doyle

tiger muskie

William Doyle and His Tiger Muskie

[Our best guess is that William’s tiger musky weighed about 32 pounds. The New York State angling record is 35 pounds 8 ounces, and 50-inches-long. – Tom Lake]

5/7 – Manhattan, HRM 1: With the river getting warmer, our expectations were rising as we checked our research sampling gear in Hudson River Park at The River Project’s sampling station on the lighthouse tender Lilac at Pier 25. While our catch lacked numbers, it excelled in quality fishes. Our crab pot had three tautog (blackfish) measuring 200, 210, and a whopping 365 mm-long male (nearly 15-inches!). – Siddhartha Hayes

And the Fish of the Week is (only one this time out):

5/5 – Hudson River Watershed:  This week’s entry is the lumpfish (Cyclopterus lumpus). Lumpfish are classified as a temperate marine stray and is the only member of its family (Cyclopteridae) found, albeit rarely, in our watershed. Lumpfish are number 138 (of 228) on our watershed list of fishes. If you would like a copy of the list, e-mail: trlake7@aol.com.

lumpfish

A Lumpfish

There are very few forms of wildlife whose common name is a better fit. Bigelow and Schroeder’s 1953 classic, The Fishes of the Gulf of Maine, describes them as “ungainly” and refers to them simply as “Lump.” They are a fish of the North Atlantic, ranging from Hudson Bay south to northern New Jersey. The only lumpfish I have ever caught was in 1992 from Ron Ingold’s commercial boat out of Edgewater (NJ) as we picked his shad net at midnight under the George Washington Bridge. Most lumpfish average a foot-long or less but can reach 23-inches. While they are rarely eaten, their roe is marketed as caviar to those who cannot afford, or feel ethically compelled to avoid, sturgeon caviar. – Tom Lake

Green’s always been our favorite color,

UGS

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Happy Mother’s Day, UESiders!!

Have a delightful time with the family whether the promised rain comes or not!!

And know that in 2019, Mother’s Day is also the launch of International Compost Awareness Week…  And National Small Business Week!!

And that tomorrow’s World Migratory Bird Day/inaugeration of the 2019 I Bird NY Challenge!!

Then there’s the jam-packed week ahead:

Now to Friday, May 17th at 5pm:  Apply for the Watershed Forestry Institute for Teachers

Fresh Air Fund’s Sharp Reservation, Fishkill, August 18th-22nd

Explore the forests, waters, science, engineering, history, and world-famous partnerships of the NYC Watershed and water supply system…  All while earning 24-CTLE credit hour!!  Free!!  For more and to apply

Saturday, May 11th:  82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket

82nd Street between First and York, 9am–2pm

Compost & Clothes Collection, 9am–1pm

With us  will be American Pride Seafood, Bread Alone, Sikking Flowers, Samascott, Ole Mother Hubbert, SunFed Beef,  Ballard Honey, Alewife, Hawthorne Valley (with  Consider Bardwell items), Gayeski and Nolasco Farms!!

The Master Knife Sharpener will be present and honing away, too!!

Market Manager Ciana adds:  “Valley Shepard Creamery returns this Saturday and will we ever be happy to have them back!!  As ever, they’ll have a great selection of sheep and goat products, from cheese to – if we’re lucky – yogurt!!  We’re also re-stocked up with GrowNYC green reusable mesh produce bags that’ve been selling out!!   Oh, and I’ll be  cooking up some inspiration for the Mother’s Day meal!!”

Last Week’s Recycling Totals –  71 lbs batteries;  9 lbs cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges;   2 pairs eye glasses; 1 mascara wand; 14 compost bins;  42 bags of clothes

Give us 14 bins and we will fill them!!

Saturday, May 11th:  Shred–A-Thon – Pre-Memorial Day Edition

82nd Street Greenmarket, 82nd Street between First & York, 10am-2pm

But do keep in mind:

NO cardboard or plastic-handled shopping bags.

REMOVE paper clips and spiral bindings. 

NO HARDCOVER BOOKS.   (But paperbacks are fine.)

(Hold on to your hardcovers for the time being!!)

Our thanks to CMs Kallos and Powers and AM Seawright for making Shred-A-Thons possible!!

Saturday, May 11th:  Shop Around the Corner Symposium

Bohemian National Hall, 321 East 73rd Street, 11am-3pm

Local small business owners, business experts and representatives of the City  weigh in on the challenges of keeping a business alive and thriving in an era intense development and  economic change!!   Following a lunch provided by area legacy restaurants, Jill Eisner’ll lead a tour of Yorkville with a focus on its historic immigrant businesses!!  General admission, $25.   Friends & seniors, $20.  Co-sponsored by Six to Celebrate, Friends of the Upper East Side Historical Districts NYC Department of Cultural Affairs and CM Kallos.   For more and to register

Saturday, May 11th:  Jazz at Andrew Haswell Green Park 

The East River Esplanade at 60th Street, 1pm

And we quote, “Join Council Member Ben Kallos and the NYC Parks Department and for a free afternoon of jazz in the park on Saturday May 11. Based in New York, singer/song-writer, Lara Bello conveys the music of her hometown Granada Spain: Flamenco, Arabic melodies and Mediterranean roots masterfully fused with African and Latin American rhythms.”  Has to be great!!  To reserve your seat

Saturday, May 11th:  Watercolor Portrait Workshop

Mount Vernon Hotel Museum, 421 East 61st Street, 2pm

A companion piece to the Museum’s just-opened exhibit:  “Who Do Say You Are –  Portraiture Then and Now “…  Create your own portraits or self-portraits, all under the guidance of artist Palen Obesa!!  No experience necessary!!  Free…  For more and to reserve your place (a necessity)… 

Monday, May 13th:  The Hunter College Choir Presents Mozart’s Requiem

Hunter College Assembly Hall,  North Building, 695 Park Avenue (entry on 69th between Park and Lexington Avenues), 7:30pm 

One marvelous spring concert that includes not only the Requiem but the Vesperae solennes de confessore,  Laudate Dominum and Ave verum Corpus, too!!  Free.  For more…    (Thanks to Linda Goldsmith for the tip!!)
Then and soon:

Saturday, May 18th:  Spring Celebration at the Aycock Pavillion

60th Street  & the East River Esplanade, 1-4pm 

Spring season on our wonderful Esplanade begins with live music from Home Cookin’, ice cream treats, a ton of fun for kids and more!!  An Esplanade Friends’ event!!  For more and upcoming Saturday fun

Sunday, May 19th:  It’s My Park Day at Isaacs Park 

Stanley Isaacs Park, First Avenue & 96th Street, 11:30am-3:30pm

Ready this much-loved and heavily-used playground/roller hockey rink/quiet seating public space to shine for the summer season!!  Think weeding, cultivation, applying compost/mulch and planting!!  Tools, gloves, kneepads, great refreshments and best company supplied!!   To sign on…   

Sunday, May 19th:  Greek Jewish Festival

280 Broome Street between Allen & Eldridge Streets, 12-6pm

For all our great city can sometimes seem to be losing character (especially where street fairs are concerned), it remains home to events like this one:  A celebration of the Romaniote and Sephardic heritage of Jewish immigrants from Greece!!  Think kosher Greek food,  homemade Greek pastries, traditional Greek dancing,  live Greek and Sephardic music and more!!  Be there!!  For more

Monday, May 20th:  World War I –  Its Impact, Its Aftermath, and Lasting Lessons for Today 

Roosevelt House, 47-49 East 65th Street, 6-8:30pm

A mini-symposium on the after effects of The Great War combined with a mini-symposium and lit reception.  Co-sponsored by AM Rebecca Seawright.  Free!  itothe For more and tickets (you need one)… 

Tuesday, May 21st:  Every Other Tuesday Knitting Social

AM Seawright’s Community Office, 1480 York Avenue between 78th & 79th, 2-4pm

Quote, “Join Neighborhood Knitters for Crafting and Conversation!!”  (As everyone who’s ever wielded a stitch holder knows, knitters do like to chat!!)  And we’re talking equal opportunity knitting/crocheting…  Come on, guys…  You’re welcome, too!!  And folks of all skill levels.  Just RSVP

Wednesday, May 22nd – Sunday, June 2nd:  2019 World Science Fair

Throughout the City

Science, yes, but totally accessible, mind-expanding and amazing fun!!   For this year’s extraordinary program line-up and to purchase advance tickets

Thursday, May 23rd:  2019 NYC Food Waste Fair

Brooklyn Navy Yard, 63 Flushing Avenue,  Building 77

And we quote:  “An interactive experience connecting food, beverage and hospitality professionals and home cooks alike with workshops forums, lectures and film on achieving zero food waste, sustainable waste management, on-site compostineg, anerobic digestion and very much more!!   (Encourage your favorite restauranteurs to attend!!)  Tickets, $20-$60  (Use “ILOVECOMPOST” for a 10% discount!!)  For complete details

Saturday, May 24th:  Skate Night at Isaacs Park

Stanley Isaacs Park, First Avenue  96th Street, Family Session 4-5pm, Adult Session 5:30-7pm 

A great afternoon/evening outdoors and on roller skates AND complete with live DJ, jumbo games, some available skates for the skate-less and plenty more…  Just be sure to bring socks!!   Sponsored by CM Kallos.   Free!!   To reserve a place and skates

Saturday, May 26th:  Marble Hill Walking Tour

Meet at Broadway & 225th Street, 11am-1pm

Engineer Bryan Diffley, Project Manager of the High Bridge restoration leads a walk exploring construction of the NYC’s 19th Century Harlem Ship Canal!!  Organized by the great NYC H2O.  $30.  For more and to reserve your place

June already:

Saturday & Sunday, June 1st & 2nd:  Outdoor Fest 2019 – Campout on Staten Island

Henry Kaufman Campgrounds, Staten Island

Think camping out under the stars, a 5K night trail race, an ultra trail run, survival skills training, yoga, slacklining, stargazing with real telescopes and astronomers, live entertainment, available transportation and beer by Sierra Nevada!!  No kidding, the best campout!!  $40-$155.  For details and to sign up

Tuesday, June 4th:  Annual Manhattan Public Water Board Hearing

255 Greenwich Street, Eighth Floor, Room 8-S1S2, 2pm

Water rates, yes, but NYC water-centric organizations like SWIM are also focusing on our stormwater infrastructure – or lack thereof – situation. 

A little activism:

Should you support  banning brain-harming – especially in children – pesticide chlorpyrifos from school lunches

Or oppose the fossil fuel-bearing Williams pipeline being a constructed in NYS, yes, there’s another petition to sign…  (Relentlessness is a big part of how such things get beat!)  

Or if you oppose cuts in protection for the Great Lakes

Then on to miscellany:

Headlining Schurz Park’s great “Park Notes” is the importance of this wonderful UES green space as a regional habitat corridor!!    (Yes, monarch butterflies – and many another critter — now migrate through the UES!!)

Monarch Butterfly

Check out Wearable Collections’ — the folks who recycle the clothes we donate at 82nd Street – Shoe Drive

Pesticide enforcement…  Monitoring circus elephants…  Lost pets and more…  NYS Conservation Officers have had a busy week

Very deep tip of the hat to Chobani founder and CEO will be paying off school lunch debt incurred by Rhode Island public  school students!!

UES fans of Quatorze Bis late of 79th Street…  It’ll soon be reopening on the NE corner of First and 82nd Street!!

Time for animals, present and past:

Yes, there is such a thing as a recycling dog...

It’s a bees’ life in London

99 million year-old millipede

And from the Hudson River Almanac:

4/27 – Brooklyn, New York City: Naturalists from the Brooklyn Bridge Park Conservancy hauled up a Billion Oyster Project-research-oyster cage and were pleasantly surprised to find three tautog, six skilletfish, and five young-of-year oyster toadfish. The combination of the cage being undisturbed all winter and the dense layers of mud on the oyster clusters seemed to make the bottom ideal habitat. – Christina Tobitsch

4/29 – New York City: Over the last four days, hundreds of citizen scientists contributed nature observations as a part of an international competition called the City Nature Challenge. The results page from the four-day event cited more than 25,000 observations including no fewer than 1,600 different species. Unsurprisingly, some of the most abundantly documented species were invasives, such as garlic mustard, mugwort, and Japanese knotweed. – Christina Tobitsch   

(Led by UES Susan Hewitt, a crew of UES naturalists were making their own observations at Schurz Park!!)

And the Fish of the Week:

4/26 – Hudson River Watershed: This week’s entry is the butterfish (Peprilus triacanthus). Butterfish are classified as a temperate marine stray and is the only member of its family (Stromateidae) in our watershed. Butterfish are number 212 (of 228) on our watershed list of fishes. If you would like a copy of the list, e-mail: trlake7@aol.com.

Atlantic Butterfish

Atlantic Butterfish

[The butterfish is a small (6-10 inches), rather rhombic-shaped, silvery fish lacking pelvic fins. They are found in the lower estuary when the river warms, and salinities rise, and they will frequently linger in the Upper Bay of New York Harbor well into autumn. Butterfish are an important forage species for high-end predators such as bluefish, striped bass, summer flounder, marine mammals, and birds of prey. Their common name may, in part, be derived from assessments like one from the Nova Scotian Institute of Science (1939) who describes them as “… one of our best table fish, fat, oily, and of delicious flavor.” Tom Lake]

Let the paper be shredded,

UGS

 

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Happy Lily of the Valley/Flower of the Month, UESiders!!

When you pass by the northern corner of the Robbins Plaza planter, check out the several beautiful little lilies peeking out from under that big (and unidentified) bush!!

No kidding around, as bulb blooms surge and fade, the active UES gardening season has begun!!

If you’ve ever felt the call to pick up hand rake and trowel, don gloves and kneepads, to weed and plant…  There’re a myriad of truly wonderful opportunities to learn and participate from ultra-local/right-around-the-corner to citywide!!  (We’d be happy to help locate just the right one for you!!) 

Oh, and just so you know:  2019 is the official Year of the Dahlia!!

dahlia

Then there’s the coming week: 

Throughout the Month:  Movies in UES Parks

St. Catherine’s Park…   John Jay Park…  Carl Schurz Park

Throughout the Month:  Free Mammograms 

Stanley Isaacs Center…   Carter Burden Center…  Roosevelt Island Senior Center

Friday, May 3rd – Sunday, May 5th:  Jane’s Walk Weekend

Throughout the City

No better description of the great annual festival inspired by urban activist Jane Jacobs:  “During Jane’s Walk weekend, the simple act of exploring the city is enhanced with personal observations, local history and civic engagement.  Jane’s Walk encourages people to share stories about their neighborhoods, discover unseen aspects of their communities and connect with visitors and neighbors alike.”  Free!!  For Walks and to register

Saturday, May 4th:  82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket

82nd Street between First and York, 9am–2pm

Compost & Clothes Collection, 9am–1pm

At their tables will be American Pride Seafood, Bread Alone, Sikking Flowers, Samascott, Ole Mother Hubbert, SunFed Beef,  Ballard Honey, Alewife, Hawthorne Valley (with  Consider Bardwell items), Gayeski and Nolasco Farms!!

Market Manager Ciana advises:  “This Saturday I’ll host a “Guess the Weight” game at the Info Tent!! Just guess the weight of different produce for a chance to win a reusable produce bag!!  2019’s great run of spring and micro greens, herbs, ramps and fiddleheads continues…  With – hopefully this week – the addition of asparagus!! Also a great time for you home gardeners to pick up potted herbs, vegetables and annuals  from Nolasco and Gajeski Farms!!”

And what of the Master Knife Sharpener, you ask?  She’s off to a family event this weekend but plans to be back with us next week!!

Last Week’s Recycling Totals –  66 lbs batteries;  11 lbs cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges;   4 pairs eye glasses; 3 mascara wands; 12 compost bins;  37 bags of clothes

Bring on those glasses and mascara wands!!

Ssaturday, May 4th:  Urban Wildlife Festival

West 172nd Street at Amsterdam Avenue in Highbridge Park, 1-4pm

And we quote:  “Kick off the Urban Park Rangers’ 40th Anniversary by getting to know your wild NYC neighbors, including squirrels, raccoons, opossum, and coyotes while participating in games and activities to build your awareness and understanding of the natural world.”  Organized by Urban Park Rangers & The Fort Tryon Park Trust.  Free.  For complete info

Saturday, May 4th:  Historic Workshop – Herbs

Mount Vernon Hotel Museum, 421 East 61st Street,  2pm

Learn how herbs were once vital to concoction of necessities from cosmetics to cleaning supplies…  Then make some of your own with the fabulous herbs growing right in the Museum’s lovely garden!!  Adults, $15.  Members & Students, $10.  For tickets

Sunday, May 5th:  P.S. 267 Spring Fling

63rd Street between Second & Third, 11am-3pm

And we quote:  “Get ready for the greatest block party ever!”  Think carnival rides, games, bouncy houses, face painting, Game Truck, BBQ and so much more!  Plus you’ll be supporting one of our great UES schools!!  For more

Monday, May 6th:  6th Annual Esplanade Friends Spring Benefit

The Bentley Hotel, 500 East 62nd Street at York Avenue, 6:30-8:30pm

Set foot on our East River Esplanade of late?  Bet you’ve been amazed at the steady transformation…  The lovely landscaping along the Rockefeller U…  The GreenParkGardeners’ amazing natural pollinator-friendly garden…  The sea of flowering bulbs and summer flora in the 96th Street Planter…  The on-going work by Hospital for Special Surgery and Sloan-Kettering in the Seventies…   So much accomplished!!  So much to be done!!  And we all can be a part of a magnificent UES waterfront soon-to-be!!  Tickets from $150.  For complete details

Tuesday, May 7th:  Every Other Tuesday Knitting Social

AM Seawright’s Community Office, 1480 York Avenue between 78th & 79th, 2-4pm

Quote, “Join Neighborhood Knitters for Crafting and Conversation!!”  (As everyone who’s ever wielded a stitch holder knows, knitters do like to chat!!)  And we’re talking equal opportunity knitting/crocheting…  Come on, guys…  You’re welcome, too!!  And folks of all skill levels.  Just RSVP

Onward to a truly dense May:

Friday, May 10th:  “Poisoning Paradise” Special Screening

Helen Mills Theater, 137 West 26th Street, 8pm

Answering the question of the effect of double threat chemicals/GMO is having on Hawaii.  Nominated for Best Documentary Feature at the NY Independent Film Festival.  $17.50.  For more and tickets

Saturday, May 11th -Sunday, May 12th:  Mappy Hour Field Trip – Bikepacking to Croton Point Park

Depart from the Hudson River Greenway & Chambers Street, 7am

A ride north with lunch in Elmsford and arrival at the Croton Point park campground approx 3pm.  Bathroom, porta-pottys, showers, water and fire-pit are all provided and there’s a supermarket nearby!!  $45.  For more and to sign up

Saturday, May 11th:  Shred–A-Thon – Pre-Memorial Day Edition

82nd Street Greenmarket, 82nd Street between First & York, 10am-2pm

Just remember:

NO cardboard or plastic-handled shopping bags.

REMOVE paper clips and spiral bindings. 

NO HARDCOVER BOOKS.   (But paperbacks are fine.)

(Hold on to your hardcovers for the time being!!)

Thank you, AM Seawright & CMs Powers and Kallos for your continuing support!!

Saturday, May 11th:  Jazz at Andrew Haswell Green Park 

The East River Esplanade at 60th Street, 1pm

And we quote, “Join Council Member Ben Kallos and the NYC Parks Department and for a free afternoon of jazz in the park on Saturday May 11. Based in New York, singer/song-writer, Lara Bello conveys the music of her hometown Granada Spain: Flamenco, Arabic melodies and Mediterranean roots masterfully fused with African and Latin American rhythms.”  Has to be great!!  To reserve your seat

Saturday, May 11th:  Watercolor Portrait Workshop

Mount Vernon Hotel Museum, 421 East 61st Street, 2pm

A companion piece to the Museum’s just-opened exhibit:  “Who Do Say You Are –  Portraiture Then and Now “…  Create your own portraits or self-portraits, all under the guidance of artist Palen Obesa!!  No experience necessary!!  Free…  For more and to reserve your place (a necessity)… 

Monday, May 13th:  The Hunter College Choir Presents Mozart’s Requiem

Hunter College Assembly Hall,  North Building, 695 Park Avenue (entry on 69th between Park and Lexington Avenues), 7:30pm 

One marvelous spring concert that includes not only the Requiem but the Vesperae solennes de confessore,  Laudate Dominum and Ave verum Corpus, too!!  Free.  For more…    (Thanks to Linda Goldsmith for the tip!!)

Saturday, May 18th:  Spring Celebration at the Aycock Pavillion

60th Street  & the East River Esplanade, 1-4pm 

Spring season on our wonderful Esplanade begins with live music from Home Cookin’, ice cream treats, a ton of fun for kids and more!!  An Esplanade Friends’ event!!  For more and upcoming Saturday fun

Sunday, May 19th:  It’s My Park Day at Isaacs Park 

Stanley Isaacs Park, First Avenue & 96th Street, 11:30am-3:30pm

Ready this much-loved and heavily-used playground/roller hockey rink/quiet seating public space to shine for the summer season!!  Think weeding, cultivation, applying compost/mulch and planting!!  Tools, gloves, kneepads, great refreshments and best company supplied!!   To sign on…   

Sunday, May 19th:  Greek Jewish Festival

280 Broome Street between Allen & Eldridge Streets, 12-6pm

For all our great city can sometimes seem to be losing character (especially where street fairs are concerned), it remains home to events like this one:  A celebration of the Romaniote and Sephardic heritage of Jewish immigrants from Greece!!  Think kosher Greek food,  homemade Greek pastries, traditional Greek dancing,  live Greek and Sephardic music and more!!  Be there!!  For more

Wednesday, May 22nd – Sunday, June 2nd:  2019 World Science Fair

Throughout the City

Science, yes, but totally accessible, mind-expanding and amazing fun!!   For this year’s extraordinary program line-up and to purchase advance tickets

Thursday, May 23rd:  2019 NYC Food Waste Fair

Brooklyn Navy Yard, 63 Flushing Avenue,  Building 77

And we quote:  “An interactive experience connecting food, beverage and hospitality professionals and home cooks alike with workshops forums, lectures and film on achieving zero food waste, sustainable waste management, on-site compostineg, anerobic digestion and very much more!!   (Encourage your favorite restauranteurs to attend!!)  Tickets, $20-$60  (Use “ILOVECOMPOST” for a 10% discount!!)  For complete details

Saturday, May 24th:  Skate Night at Isaacs Park

Stanley Isaacs Park, First Avenue  96th Street, Family Session 4-5pm, Adult Session 5:30-7pm 

A great afternoon/evening outdoors and on roller skates AND complete with live DJ, jumbo games, some available skates for the skate-less and plenty more…  Just be sure to bring socks!!   Sponsored by CM Kallos.   Free!!   To reserve a place and skates

Saturday, May 26th:  Marble Hill Walking Tour

Meet at Broadway & 225th Street, 11am-1pm

Engineer Bryan Diffley, Project Manager of the High Bridge restoration leads a walk exploring construction of the NYC’s 19th Century Harlem Ship Canal!!  Organized by the great NYC H2O.  $30.  For more and to reserve your place

What would a week be without some activism:

As in if you oppose the relentless attempts to remove protections from wolves… 

How ’bout we give our Gansevoort area neighbors a hand in limiting rampaging development?  (Just email bgormley@cb.nyc.gov with subject “Attention Land Use Committee – Gansevoort restrictive declaration” and the following message:  “Ladies/Gentlemen: Please limit the ability of developers from further eroding the character and quality of life of of this treasured Manhattan neighborhood, including prohibition of further exploitation of unused development rights. Sincerely”… 

So, just as Parks hands The Oval over to Tennis Inc. for a decade, Comptroller Stringer announced that the UES is the only Manhattan neighborhood with an inadequate number of playgrounds  

Good to hear that developers are pressing for more East River ferry stops, but how about more and further south stops on the UES side of the river?  (Especially given existing the overcrowding at our sole UES 90th Street stop!!) 

Miscellany:

Curious what waste company execs earn…?

Whew!!  Looks like Tin Pan Alley will be landmarked!!

And that the flower district’s reviving

That while more of 79th faces the wrecking ball

Incredible the Bronx has gone so long without a bookstore

Best sunscreens of 2019 as per Consumer Reports… 

Sturm and drang in the raisin industry

 

Kudos to our NYS DEC Forest Rangers who, in 2018, conducted 346 search and rescue missions, extinguished 105 wildfires that burned a total of 845 acres, participated in 24 prescribed fires that burned and rejuvenated 610 acres, and worked on cases that resulted in 2,354 tickets or arrests!!

Then there’re NYS Forest Ranger highlights

And just how progressive is our DEC? So progressive it even has virtual campground tours!!

From The NY Times, a “How Does Your Diet Contribute to Climate Change” Quiz…

What our NYS Conservation Officers were up to the last 7 days…  Like perch poaching…

Critter time:

Let’s cross fingers that – as the experts predict – 121 million monarch butterflies migrate across NYState this year!!  (And let’s plant (favorite food) milkweed like crazy!!)

Aw, kudos to Willie Nelson for what he’s doing for horses

Rescue of the world’s smallest (and plenty cute) kitten

Then from the Hudson River Almanac:

4/13 – Manhattan: We thought we were seeing things late this afternoon at Riverbank State Park (146th Street), when a harbor porpoise emerged from the river no more than fifteen feet away. We watched it surface and dive repeatedly. [This is the continuing story of the three harbor porpoises first spotted in the Hudson River on April 8 by Alexe Taylor.]  – Brittany Porter, M. Alejandra Trumble

porpoise

A Porpoise

4/16 – Westchester County: A second-year bald eagle nest (NY528), on the river in Westchester County, has three nestlings this year, a rather uncommon number in the Hudson Valley (one or two nestlings are far more common). – Anne Swaim, Charlie Roberto, Larry Trachtenberg, Bonnie Coe

[This bald eagle nest (NY528) could be quite vulnerable if its exact location was widely known. Human attention, either innocent curiosity or idle mischief, can threaten bald eagles and their nestlings. It is far better for them if their presence stays under the human radar. – Tom Lake]

4/18 – Manhattan, HRM 1: We checked our research sampling gear in Hudson River Park at The River Project’s sampling station on the lighthouse tender Lilac at Pier 25 and found that we had caught a gorgeous winter flounder (140 mm). The flounder will have a place in our education tank along with a young horseshoe crab. – Toland Kister, Melissa Rex

Flounder

That Flounder

4/22 – Manhattan: It was a warm day at Inwood Hill Park, and the big cherry tree inside the Isham Street entrance was blooming. A pair of crabapples were at that lovely stage when dark pink buds mix with white blossoms. Violets and periwinkle were blooming, and near the Nature Center, grape hyacinths and a lilac bush were as well. Leaves of burdock, broad-leaved dock, and common mallow were plentiful and so was red dead-nettle. The big, black willow by the salt marsh was dropping catkins. Along the path up through The Clove, spicebush had finished flowering, lesser celandine had flowers, the first leaves (cotyledons) of jewelweed had appeared, and the little patch of mayapple had big leaves. Most pleasing was the flowering Dutchman’s breeches.  Up on the ridge, most of the forsythia had dropped its flowers, but the leaves of day-lily were crowded and a foot high. This year’s display promises to be spectacular. Jetbead shrubs (Rhodotypos scandens), scattered through the woods, were flowering. Jetbead, native to China, is in the rose family, but the white flowers have four petals. – Thomas Shoesmith

But The Fishes   of the Week is:

(Yup!  We’re talking two!!)

#1 – The central mudminnow (Umbra limi) is a nonnative, canal immigrant from the Great Lakes and upper Mississippi drainage. The central mudminnow is number 86 (of 228) on our watershed list of fishes. If you would like a copy of our list, e-mail: trlake7@aol.com.

Central Mudminnow

A Central Mudminnow

Mudminnows are unpretentious little fish, that at first glance, look much like killifish. But, they are not minnows and are actually somewhat related to the pikes and pickerels. C. Lavett Smith remarked that mudminnows look like “cigar butts with fins.” In our watershed, central mudminnows have a rather broad range of forage, feeding on zooplankton and insect larvae, and can reach 100 mm (4-inches) in length. 

#2 – The spot (Leiostomus xanthurus) is a seasonally resident marine species and  one of seven members of the drum family (Sciaenidae) in our watershed. Others include black drum, northern kingfish, Atlantic croaker, silver perch, weakfish, and freshwater drum. Spot are number 187 (of 228) on our watershed list of fishes. 

Spot

A Spot

Spot are small saltwater fish not often exceeding ten-inches or weighing more than a pound. They are a favorite recreational species and are often thought of as a “saltwater” bluegill sunfish. They are also one of many that have lent their presence to the lore and legend of Hudson River fishes. Long ago, when I began to pay attention to the Hudson River and those who plied their trade on the water, I consistently heard of “Lafayettes” from well-seasoned fishermen. I discovered that this was a colloquial name for spot, and while the name has since faded out of memory, the story is legendary.

The presence of spot in the river can be very sporadic, and after a long absence, a great run of spot came into the lower Hudson River in 1824, coinciding with a visit from France’s Marquis de Lafayette. The Marquis was invited to Manhattan for a parade in his honor to show our gratitude for his effort on behalf of the American Colonies during the American Revolution. A further honor was bestowed on the Marquis when Leiostomus xanthurus became the “Lafayette.” – Tom Lake

Back on dry land:

4/19 – Town of Poughkeepsie: Intrepid photographer and nest-watcher, Bob Rightmyer, took an all-day notice of food deliveries to bald eagle nest NY62 for the two 27-day-old nestlings. Across the day, Bob photographed seven fish: channel catfish (3), white perch (2), and gizzard shad (2).  – Tom Lake

eagle and babies

4/24 – Manhattan: At midday today, a common raven flew only a few yards over my head on 2nd Avenue and East 3rd Street, carrying a rat in its beak, not its talons, as would a raptor. At the time I questioned whether or not it was an American crow, but the next day I saw it again, this time flying into a honey locust, and I got a good look. It was huge – the size of a red-tailed hawk. I contacted New York City Audubon, and they verified that they were seeing ravens as well, even on the roof of their office building. – Robert Shapiro

Yours in greening our Esplanade,

UGS

 

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Happy (Newly Esstablished) National Food Waste Awareness/Winning on Food Waste Reduction Month, UESiders!!

Pretty darned amazing that, in 2019, federal entities EPA, USDA and FDA have joined in an effort to reduce American food waste by 30-40%  by 2030!!

So, government folks, count on NYC UESiders – already established composting champs – to continue filling ever more of those big green bins!! 

On to the week ahead:

Friday, April 26th:  Schurz Park Electronics Recycling Event

Carl Schurz Park, East End Avenue & 86th Street, 10am-4pm

So you’ve been postponing that trip over to Best Buy with a taxi full of aged electronics…  Lucky you, you’ll soon be able to shed it all-but on your front doorstep!!  Organized by Lower East Side Ecology Center.  Free.  For what’s accepted

Saturday, April 27th:  82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket

82nd Street between First and York, 9am–2pm

Compost & Clothes Collection, 9am–1pm

With us will be American Pride Seafood, Bread Alone, Sikking Flowers, Samascott, Ole Mother Hubbert, SunFed Beef,  Ballard Honey, Alewife, Hawthorne Valley (with  Consider Bardwell items), Gayeski and Nolasco Farms!!

Market Manager Ciana has these treats in store for us:  “I’ll be highlighting spring greens! Different ways to store them so they keep fresh longer without plastic, sticking with GrowNYC’s April theme of Plastic Cleanse month.   And this week’s cooking demo will be featuring – you guess it! – a variety of greens!!”

(We all can celebrate #plasticcleanse month by loading up on re-usable produce bags available at Ciana’s table!!)

Last but couldn’t be farther from least, our one and only Master Knife Sharpener will be making her annual April return to 82nd Street and will she ever be primed to hone!!

Last Week’s Recycling Totals –  71 lbs batteries;  18 lbs cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges;   2 pairs eye glasses; 12 compost bins;  43 bags of clothes

Brilliant for a holiday weekend!!

Friday, April 26th:  Battle of the Boroughs – City Nature Challenge Part I at Schurz Park

Meet at 86th Street & East End Avenue, 9am-12pm

The challenge:  Make as many observations – identifying weeds, birds, bugs, fungi, lichens – in this gorgeous park as you can!!  Plus have fun and help record nature under the guidance of UESider and champion iNaturalist contributor, Susan Hewitt!!   No need to RSVP, but feel free to contact @susanhewitt for more details…

Saturday, April 27th:  Earth Love Day on Roosevelt Island

Good Shepherd Plaza Farmers Market, 9am-2pm

How green are our Roosevelt Island neighbors?  Deep compost-and-battery- collecting green!!  As in celebrating their Earth Love Day with a compost give-back, eco activities and info on how the Island can be even greener!!  For more… 

Saturday, April 27th:  Car Free Earth Day

Broadway from Times Square to Union Square, 9am-3pm

Explore near 30 blocks of the Great White Way on foot and with six stops where we can add to our environmental smarts!!  Free.  For the complete lowdown...  

Saturday, April 27th:  Walking with Warhol Tour

Meeting place disclosed with ticket purchase, 11am

Oh, yeah, there was The Factory downtown…  BUT, newcomers, one of the hippest individuals ever resided right here on the UES!!  AND guided by architectural historian Matt Postal you can discover where in the hood he lived and hung out!!  Organized by Friends of the Upper East Side Historic Districts.  Members, $15.  Non-members, $25.  To sign up

Saturday, April 27th:  Spring Celebration at the Aycock Pavillion

60th Street  & the East River Esplanade, 1-4pm 

Spring season on our wonderful Esplanade begins with live music from Home Cookin’, ice cream treats,  a ton of fun for kids and more!!  An Esplanade Friends’ event!!  For more and future Saturday fun

It really is May:

Friday, May 3rd – Sunday, May 5th:  Jane’s Walk Weekend

Throughout the City

No better description of the great annual festival inspired by urban activist Jane Jacobs:  “During Jane’s Walk weekend, the simple act of exploring the city is enhanced with personal observations, local history and civic engagement.  Jane’s Walk encourages people to share stories about their neighborhoods, discover unseen aspects of their communities and connect with visitors and neighbors alike.”  Free!!  For Walks and to register

Saturday, May 4th:  Historic Workshop – Herbs

Mount Vernon Hotel Museum, 421 East 61st Street,  2pm

Learn how herbs were once vital to concoction of necessities from cosmetics to cleaning supplies…  Then make some of your own with the fabulous herbs growing right in the Museum’s lovely garden!!  Adults, $15.  Members & Students, $10.  For tickets

Sunday, May 5th:  P.S. 267 Spring Fling

63rd Street between Second & Third, 11am-3pm

And we quote:  “Get ready for the greatest block party ever!”  Think carnival rides, games, bouncy houses, face painting, Game Truck, BBQ and so much more!  Plus you’ll be supporting one of our great UES schools!!  For more

Monday, May 6th:  6th Annual Esplanade Friends Spring Benefit

The Bentley Hotel, 500 East 62nd Street at York Avenue, 6:30-8:30pm

Set foot on our East River Esplanade of late?  Bet you’ve been amazed at the steady transformation…  The lovely landscaping along the Rockefeller U…  The GreenParkGardeners’ amazing natural pollinator-friendly garden…  The sea of flowering bulbs and summer flora in the 96th Street Planter…  The on-going work by Hospital for Special Surgery and Sloan-Kettering in the Seventies…   So much accomplished!!  So much to be done!!  And we all can be a part of a magnificent UES waterfront soon-to-be!!  Tickets from $150.  For complete details

Saturday, May 11th:  Shred–A-Thon – Pre-Memorial Day Edition

82nd Street Greenmarket, 82nd Street between First & York, 10am-2pm

Just keep in mind:

NO cardboard or plastic-handled shopping bags.

REMOVE paper clips and spiral bindings. 

NO HARDCOVER BOOKS.   (But paperbacks are fine.)

(Hold on to your hardcovers for the time being!!)

We thank AM Seawright & CMs Powers and Kallos for their continuing support!!

Saturday, May 11th:  Watercolor Portrait Workshop

Mount Vernon Hotel Museum, 421 East 61st Street, 2pm

A companion piece to the Museum’s just-opened exhibit:  “Who Do Say You Are –  Portraiture Then and Now “…  Create your own portraits or self-portraits, all under the guidance of artist Palen Obesa!!  No experience necessary!!  Free…  For more and to reserve your place (a necessity)…    

Monday, May 13th:  The Hunter College Choir Presents Mozart’s Requiem

Hunter College Assembly Hall,  North Building, 695 Park Avenue (entry on 69th between Park and Lexington Avenues), 7:30pm 

One marvelous spring concert that includes not only the Requiem but the Vesperae solennes de confessore,  Laudate Dominum and Ave verum Corpus, too!!  Free.  For more…    (Thank you, Linda Goldsmith, for putting us in the know!!)

Sunday, May 19th:  It’s My Park Day at Isaacs Park 

Stanley Isaacs Park, First Avenue & 96th Street, 11:30am-3:30pm

Ready this much-loved and heavily-used playground/roller hockey rink/quiet seating public space to shine for the summer season!!  Think weeding, cultivation, applying compost/mulch and planting!!  Tools, gloves, kneepads, great refreshments and best company supplied!!   To sign on…   

Sunday, May 19th:  Greek Jewish Festival

280 Broome Street between Allen & Eldridge Streets, 12-6pm

For all our great city can sometimes seem to be losing character (especially where street fairs are concerned), it remains home to events like this one:  A celebration of the Romaniote and Sephardic heritage of Jewish immigrants from Greece!!  Think kosher Greek food,  homemade Greek pastries, traditional Greek dancing,  live Greek and Sephardic music and more!!  Be there!!  For more

Wednesday, May 22nd – Sunday, June 2nd:  2019 World Science Fair

Throughout the City

Science, yes, but totally accessible, mind-expanding and amazing fun!!   For this year’s extraordinary program line-up and to purchase advance tickets

Thursday, May 23rd:  2019 NYC Food Waste Fair

Brooklyn Navy Yard, 63 Flushing Avenue,  Building 77

And we quote:  “An interactive experience connecting food, beverage and hospitality professionals and home cooks alike with workshops forums, lectures and film on achieving zero food waste, sustainable waste management, on-site compostineg, anerobic digestion and very much more!!   (Encourage your favorite restauranteurs to attend!!)  Tickets, $20-$60  (Use “ILOVECOMPOST” for a 10% discount!!)  For complete details

Saturday, May 26th:  Marble Hill Walking Tour

Meet at Broadway & 225th Street, 11am-1pm

Engineer Bryan Diffley, Project Manager of the High Bridge restoration leads a walk exploring construction of the NYC’s 19th Century Harlem Ship Canal!!  Organized by the great NYC H2O.  $30.  For more and to reserve your place

Activist opportunities of the week:

Think Burger King should cease and desist the use of plastic cups…?

Eeek!  Company we NYCers would rather not keep:  America’s Smoggiest Cities

And in the You-Can’t-Be-Serious File:  Nine years later, cost to install an ADA elevator at the Hunter/68th Street Station on the Lex has leapt from a hardly modest $67.2M to $116M-plus...

Huh?  311 doesn’t cover all NYC

Breezier miscellany:

Heartening to know there’s progress on reducing existing plastics at least partially to raw materials usuable to make new products

Parks’ 2019 SummerStage schedule

Time to sign up NYS DEC’s First Time Camper Program…  Not only are first timers taught how to camp, but DEC provides family tents, sleeping bags, sleeping pads, camp chairs, lantern and even firewood!! 

Ten fun facts about our Central Park

Last Sunday’s Times devoted its Metropolitan section to that urban endangered species:  Unique and irreplaceable local businesses…  

The week in critters:

NYC’s favorite dog breeds

Life and perilous times of the platypus…  (You bet, there’s a “platypus app!!)

And from the Hudson River Almanac…  The Fish of the Week:

4/7 – Hudson River Watershed: This week’s fishes are from the genus Acipenser which, for us, includes Atlantic, lake, and shortnose sturgeon. They are numbers 11-12-13 (of 228) on our watershed list of fishes. (If you would like a copy of our list, e-mail: trlake7@aol.com.)

[Sturgeon are long-lived fishes. They are the stuff of myth and legend. In terms of evolution, they are a very ancient class of cartilaginous (non-bony) fishes whose ancestry can be traced back several hundred million years.

Both Atlantic and shortnose sturgeon are endangered species, protected by federal law, and possession of either species is prohibited. Research and monitoring by the DEC Hudson RiverFisheries Unit is conducted under a National Marine Fisheries Service permit number 20340. Their presence on the Federal Endangered Species list comes as the result of many factors including over-harvesting.

Atlantic Sturgeon

An Atlantic Sturgeon & Happy Fishman

Atlantic sturgeon (Acipenser oxyrinchus) are an anadromous species, in that they live most of their lives in marine waters, traveling long distances along the Atlantic coast, visiting other estuaries, but demonstrating fidelity by returning to their natal rivers to spawn. They can grow to immense sizes, as was most recently shown with the discovery (June 2018) of a 14.1-foot-long female on the bottom in the vicinity of Hyde Park. A sturgeon of this size seems mythical. There have always been stories from “old timers” of giant sturgeon at least 14-feet long. Of course, we never believed them. Fully adult Atlantic sturgeon can commonly grow to 6-8-feet long and weigh as much as 200 pounds.

Shortnose sturgeon (A. brevirostrum) are considered an estuarine species in that they spend most, if not all, of their lives in the brackish and freshwater reaches of the estuary where they spawn. However, they are capable of, and on occasion do, enter marine waters. On average, the adults are much smaller than Atlantic sturgeon, usually less than four-feet-long and averaging 15 pounds.

Lake sturgeon (A. fulvescens) are known from the Saint Lawrence River as well as lakes Erie, Ontario, Oneida, Cayuga, and Champlain. They were added to our watershed fish list in 2017, when we were apprised by Doug Carlson that the lake sturgeon had made their way from Oneida Lake into the Mohawk River, and thus our watershed. While lake sturgeon can grow to immense sizes, much like the Atlantic sturgeon, most do not exceed five-feet-long and 80 pounds.

4/17 – Haverstraw Bay, HRM 36: We caught a large shortnose sturgeon (808 millimeters (mm)) today during our juvenile Atlantic sturgeon survey. The shortnose was nearly 32-inches-long, approaching the maximum size for the species. We also caught a small Atlantic sturgeon (268 mm). It is a treat to see these small juvenile Atlantic sturgeon (this one was not much more than ten-inches-long) and to contemplate that one day, they might grow to be eight-feet-long and weigh hundreds of pounds.  [Note: one inch = 25.4 millimeters (mm)] –  DEC Hudson River Fisheries Unit

Tiny Sturgeon

That Little Sturgeon

Happiness is greenness,

UGS

 

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Happy Passover and Easter, UESiders!!

May your celebrations be brimming with family and warmth!!

Happy upcoming – as on Monday – Earth Day and World Penguin Days, too!!

Happening this Earth/World Penguin Day week:

Now to Friday, May 3rd:  Isabella Rossellini in “Link Link Circus”

Frederick Loewe Theatre, Hunter College, 68th Street between Park & Lexington

Who knew Ms. Rossellini’s been working on a Masters in Animal Behavior at Hunter the last few years??  One product of that experience:  This one woman/comedic and scientifically-informed show co-starring her very own dog, Pan!!   Tickets, $42.  Students, $15.  For yours…    

Friday, April 19th:  NYSkies Astronomy Seminar

McBurney House, 125 West 14th Street between Sixth & Seventh, 6:30-9:30pm 

Starmaster John Pasmino explains the total what, who and when of black holes…  The man’s always at his best when the subject’s most complex!!   Free!!

Saturday, April 20th:  82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket

82nd Street between First and York, 9am–2pm

Compost & Clothes Collection, 9am–1pm

With us will be American Pride Seafood, Bread Alone, Sikking Flowers, Samascott, Ole Mother Hubbert, SunFed Beef,  Ballard Honey, Alewife, Hawthorne Valley (with  Consider Bardwell items), Gayeski and Nolasco Farms!!

Mega Market Manager Margaret’s sez:  “Spring is creeping slowly upon us and April showers are truly bringing us some Flowers!   Meaning Sikking Flowers will be back with us this week with seasonal blooms to brighten holiday tables and the week ahead!!  Plus, our new market manager, Ciana, will be featuring both Easter and Passover recipes so be sure to stop by the info tent for a sample!  Oh, and remember April is #plasticcleanse month, so we’ll be selling re-usable produce bags all month! Get one or two just and fill ’em with spring greens!!”

Yes, people, Sikking Flowers returns to 82nd Street this Saturday!!

Last Week’s Recycling Totals –  75 lbs batteries;  22 lbs cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges;   2 pairs eye glasses; 13 compost bins;  53 bags of clothes

However many bins Sanitation gives us, we UESiders fill ’em!!

Coming up fast:

Friday, April 26th:  Arbor Day 

Everywhere There’s A Tree

A day to admire and love our NYC trees wherever they grow…  So why not (after recycling electronics) take a stroll along a UES Avenue or through a UES park admiring the trunks, branches and foliage described in your The Central Park Tree Guide

Friday, April 26th:  Schurz Park Electronic Recycling Event

Carl Schurz Park, East End Avenue & 86th Street, 10am-4pm

So you’ve been postponing that trip over to Best Buy with a taxi full of aged electronics…  Lucky you, you’ll soon be able to shed it all-but on your front doorstep!!  Organized by Lower East Side Ecology Center.  Free.  For what’s accepted

Friday, April 26th – Monday, April 29th:  Earth Day City  Nature Challenge

Your City Neighborhood, Round the Clock

Learn more about your local flora and fauna while helping scientists document the nature in your neighborhood and having one great time!!  From April 26th to 29th, over 150 cities and millions of people on 6 continents will compete to make the most observations of wild plants and animals in their areas!!  All you need is the free mobile app iNaturalist to join in on the fun! And talk about family friendly!!  (Reminder:  The person with the most iNaturalist entries ever lives right among us on the UES!!)  For the complete lowdown

Saturday, April 27th:  Walking with Warhol Tour

Meeting place disclosed with ticket purchase, 11am

Oh, yeah, there was The Factory downtown…  BUT, newcomers, one of the hippest individuals ever resided right here on the UES!!  AND guided by architectural historian Matt Postal you can discover where in the hood he lived and hung out!!  Organized by Friends of the Upper East Side Historic Districts.  Members, $15.  Non-members, $25.  To sign up

Saturday, April 27th:  Spring Celebration at the Aycock Pavillion

60th Street  & the East River Esplanade, 1-4pm 

Spring season on our wonderful Esplanade begins with live music from Home Cookin’, ice cream treats,  a ton of fun for kids and more!!  An Esplanade Friends’ event!!  For more and upcoming Saturday fun

Monday, April 29th:  Beyond Plastics Forum

Pace University, Pace Plaza, 3 Spruce Street, Bianco Room, Manhattan, 6–8pm

A variety of experts speak to the challenges and potential for victory posed by a world awash in you-know-what!!  (But, hey, we’re a state that’ll soon be banishing plastic bags!!)  Free.  To pre-register (a must)… 

Then, suddenly, it’s May:

Wednesday, May 1st:  Monthly Kill Your TV Reading Group

Logos Bookstore,   1575 York Avenue between 83rd & 84th Streets, 7 pm 

The group discusses Everything That Rises Must Converge by Flannery O’Connor!!

Friday, May 3rd – Sunday, May 5th:  Jane’s Walk Weekeknd

Throughout the City

No better description of the great annual festival inspired by urban activist Jane Jacobs:  “During Jane’s Walk weekend, the simple act of exploring the city is enhanced with personal observations, local history and civic engagement.  Jane’s Walk encourages people to share stories about their neighborhoods, discover unseen aspects of their communities and connect with visitors and neighbors alike.”  Free!!   For Walks and to register

Saturday, May 4th:  Historic Workshop – Herbs

Mount Vernon Hotel Museum, 421 East 61st Street,  2pm

Learn how herbs were once vital to concoction of necessities from cosmetics to cleaning supplies…  Then make some of your own with the fabulous herbs growing right in the Museum’s lovely garden!!  Adults, $15.  Members & Students, $10.  For tickets

Monday, May 6th:  6th Annual Esplanade Friends Spring Benefit

The Bentley Hotel, 500 East 62nd Street at York Avenue, 6:30-8:30pm

Set foot on our East River Esplanade of late?  Bet you’ve been amazed at the steady transformation…  The lovely landscaping along the Rockefeller U…  The GreenParkGardeners’ amazing natural pollinator-friendly garden…  The sea of flowering bulbs and summer flora in the 96th Street Planter…  The on-going work by Hospital for Special Surgery and Sloan-Kettering in the Seventies…   So much accomplished!!  So much to be done!!  And we all can be a part of a magnificent UES waterfront soon-to-be!!  Tickets from $150.  For complete details

Monday, May 13th:  The Hunter College Choir Presents Mozart’s Requiem

Hunter College Assembly Hall,  North Building, 695 Park Avenue (entry on 69th between Park and Lexington Avenues), 7:30pm 

One marvelous spring concert that includes not only the Requiem but the Vesperae solennes de confessore,  Laudate Dominum and Ave verum Corpus, too!!  Free.   For more…    (Thank you, Linda Goldsmith, for the tip!!)

Saturday, May 18th:  Empire State Native Pollinator Survey Training

North Meadow Recreation Center, Central Park, 10am-4pm

No mystery to green folks like ourselves the perilous state of our native pollinators…  But who knew NYState’s engaged in formal study of these vital critters that includes a citizen science component!!  Meaning that – with training – the likes of you and us can participate…  And that training’s soon to come to NYC in an immersive, 6-hour class covering basic pollinator biology, project survey methods and how to submit data to the project!!  Free but registering and soon is mandatory!!  For more on the survey   And sign up for training

Sunday, May 19th:  Greek Jewish Festival

280 Broome Street between Allen & Eldridge Streets, 12-6pm

For all our great city can sometimes seem to be losing character (especially where street fairs are concerned), it remains home to events like this one:  A celebration of the Romaniote and Sephardic heritage of Jewish immigrants from Greece!!  Think kosher Greek food,  homemade Greek pastries, traditional Greek dancing,  live Greek and Sephardic music and more!!  Be there!!  For more

Thursday, May 23rd:  2019 NYC Food Waste Fair

Brooklyn Navy Yard, 63 Flushing Avenue,  Building 77

And we quote:  “An interactive experience connecting food, beverage and hospitality professionals and home cooks alike with workshops forums, lectures and film on achieving zero food waste, sustainable waste management, on-site compostineg, anerobic digestion and very much more!!   (Encourage your favorite restauranteurs to attend!!)  Tickets, $20-$60  (Use “ILOVECOMPOST” for a 10% discount!!)  For the full monty

Shifting into ye olde activist gear:

Okay, so a Council bill was proposed to rein in building designs including multi-story voids like the one planned for Second and 62nd…  And, guess what?  The Council actually voted to allow even bigger voids!!  Should you oppose (scroll down)… 

How about the likes of Hershey start making non-palm oil candy?

If you support the House’s Saving America’s Pollintors Act (HR 1337) which would place restrictions on neonicotinoid insecticides (so toxic to birds a single seed coated with the stuff is enough to kill a songbird!!)… 

Reason number one zillion why we shop Greenmarkets:  The recent headline, “Busted”.  As in a whistleblower exposed lax enforcement by USDA food inspectors…  

bill requiring new or altered NYC buildings be constructed with 90% bird-friendly glass to reduce bird strike fatalities is moving through our City Council

Going brighter now:

Gorgeous as they look when viewed from our side of the river, no way those Roosevelt Island cherry trees aren’t even more stupendous up close and personal… 

Speaking of trees…  We like the sound and reality of tree seed-planting drones… 

Calling all 6th-12th grade teachers working in NYC!!  Think a Free, 5-day, 24-CTL credit hour program exploring the forests, waters, science, engineering, history, and world-famous partnerships of the NYC Watershed and water supply system!!  For more… 

Yikes!!  Real, live, actual bedbugs in the Fifth Avenue Apple Store

They’re giving out free seeds for tomatoes, eggplants, flowers and herbs at the Grand Army Plaza Central Library…    (Humm…  What a great idea!!)  

No question, disruption caused by UES construction can be more than a giant pain, but kind of pales when compared to what’s transpiring on West 69th

Ah, animals:

First and foremost, especially now it’s spring:  What to do if you encounter a baby animal… 

Yes, birds and bombs can co-exist

Rumor has it there’s a raccoon roaming on far East 73rd Street…

And, sad to say, rabid raccoons in Inwood Park… 

And the likes of rattlesnakes and bobcats abound just an hour away from NYC!!

neolithic dog...

Best NYC birdwatching spots as spring migration peaks…

Plus Audubon NYC’s offering a ton of free spring migration bird watching events

From the Hudson River Almanac:

4/3 – Ulster County: A returning pair of osprey have been busy refurbishing their nest. Each adult has been bringing suitable material to the nest, and today, one of them brought a gorgeous bright-orange goldfish (goldfish have been extremely popular with bald eagles and osprey this spring!). – Jim Yates

ospreys

That Osprey Family

[As with many bald eagle and osprey nests that are judged to be vulnerable to human intrusion, exact locations are kept very discreet to protect the adults and their nestlings. Tom Lake]

And the fish of the week has a familiar name:

4/5 – Hudson River Watershed:   The alewife (Alosa pseudoharengus), a diadromous (migratory) species. The alewife is number 24 (of 228) on our watershed list of fishes. (If you would like a copy of our list, e-mail: trlake7@aol.com.)

alewife

Alewives!!

Alewife (Alosa pseudoharengus) is one of two river herrings that include blueback herring (A. Aestivalis), that stream into the Hudson River estuary by the millions each spring to spawn. They penetrate far upriver into tidewater tributaries. Some are lifted above the Federal Dam at Troy, climb the Waterford Flight, and venture far to the west in the Mohawk River. Alewives are usually the first river herring to arrive in late March. Blueback herring, with slightly different timing, ordinarily arrive by late April.

Shoals of young-of-year alewives migrate seaward for most of the summer and autumn, following the message in their DNA to go to seawater. Some will return in 4-5 years as adults to spawn. But, to reach the ocean, requires them to navigate the lower estuary and New York Harbor where striped bass and bluefish are waiting to siphon off a large percentage. The odds of any one young-of-year herring reaching maturity is not much better than one-in-a-million. For that reason, to maintain a stable population, fishes like herring are programmed (adaptation) to produce millions of eggs. – Tom Lake

Why not dream of a 100% green world,

UGS

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Happy Get Out and Vote for 2019 Your Participatory Budgeting Choices, UESiders!!

Actually getting out isn’t at all necessary…  There’s an online ballot, as well as voting at several UES locations  in both the Kallos district and the Powers district!!

Any and everyone who’s a resident of either CM Powers’ or Kallos’ district and 11-years old/in 6th grade is eligible to vote!! 

Let your will be known, citizens!!

And then: 

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

82nd Street between First and York, 9am–2pm

Compost & Clothes Collection, 9am–1pm

With us will be American Pride Seafood, Bread Alone, Samascott, Ole Mother Hubbert, SunFed Beef,  Ballard Honey, Alewife, Hawthorne Valley (with  Consider Bardwell items), Gayeski and Nolasco Farms!!

Mega Market Manager Margaret’s advises:  “Manager G’s out-of-town, so the great Tutu will be covering this week’s market…  Another Saturday of delicious spring greens!!  Humm…  Think those certified organic greens…  Add a farm-fresh, hard-boiled egg…  Or some diced apple…  Or some crunchy, salty bacon…  Or some great goat cheese…  Or how about an all-of-the-above combo salad??!!”

(Yumm, we say!!)

Last Week’s Recycling Totals –  78 lbs batteries;  19 lbs cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges;   12 compost bins;  51 bags of clothes

And those 12 bins were extremely tightly packed!!

Saturday, April 6th:  NYC “Ground War” Film Premiere

Florence Gould Hall Theater, 55 East 59th Street, 7:30pm

Investigating the death of his father, a filmmaker enters the world of golf, chemical lobbying, citizen activism and rampant pesticide use!   Presented by  37th National Pesticide Forum.  Free.  To secure your ticket, pick up at the theater Saturday, 12-7:15pm, utilizing the code ORGANIC!!

Sunday, April 8th:  World Health Day!!

Be Kind To Your Body All Day!!

Tuesday, April 9th:  Every Other Tuesday Knitting Social

AM Seawright’s Community Office, 1480 York Avenue between 78th & 79th, 2-4pm

Quote, “Join Neighborhood Knitters for Crafting and Consersation!!”  (As everyone who’s ever wielded a stitch holder knows, knitters do like to chat!!)  And we’re talking equal opportunity knitting/crocheting…  Come on, guys…  You’re welcome, too!!  And folks of all skill levels.  Just RSVP

Tuesday, April 9th:  Free Head & Neck Cancer Screening 

A free 10-minute screening…   A quick examination…  A few short questions…
A combination that could save your life!!  And, once again, free!!   For more…  Walk-ins welcome, but why not make an appointment?  

Tuesday, April 9th:  Presentation of the NY & NJ Harbors & Tributaries Study by the Army Corps of Engineers

Alexander Hamilton U.S. Custom House, 1 Bowling Green, 5-7pm

A study that matters to UESiders for at least 2 huge reasons:  1) Management/ mitigation of the increasingly severe storms affecting the waters surrounding our city and 2) the shocking proposal to run yet another fracked gas pipeline – the Williams Pipeline – through the NYC harbor!!  One of  7 meetings in the area studied.  For the report…  A summary of that report…  And where to forward your comments

Wednesday, April 10th:  Mappy Hour Skills Series – Map Reading

718 Cyclery,  254 3rd Ave, Brooklyn, 7-9pm

Get familiar and comfortable reading a variety of types of maps, as well as knowing how to use your newly acquired knowledge for navigation in the woods or on whatever terra  you might find yourself!!  Sponsored by Mighty Hachet.  $25.  For more and to register (a must)

Saturday, April 13th:  Environmental Stewardship Day at Ruppert Park

Ruppert Park, Second Avenue Entrance, 10am-1pm  (rain date April 27th)

Join our friends and Ruppert Park Stewards, the Moslem Volunteers for New York as they transform this long-neglected public space into an UES jewel/oasis!!    Beautify, plant and mulch!!   Partake arts, crafts music, refreshments and more!!    Totally family friendly!!  Just let them know you’re coming (a must)…

Saturday, April 13th:  Schurz Park Easter Egg Hunt!!

East End Avenue at 86th Street, 11am–1pm

Hunt for eggs!!  Get a glitter cheek or hand stamp!!  Get up close and personal with the Carl Schurz Easter Bunny!!  Free!!  (Parent Alert:  Continuous waves of egg hunts commence at 11 and continue every 20 minutes until 1!) 

Saturday, April 13th:  Free Bike Helmet Fitting  Distribution Event

John Jay Park, 77th Street  Cherokee Place, 11am-2:30pm

Get ’em – available for all ages – while supplies last!!  Just be prepared to be appear in person  and learn how to properly fit and wear your helmet before you take possession. Adults over 18 receiving a helmet must sign a waiver and a parent or legal guardian must be present to sign a waiver for children under age 18.  To sign up (a must)…

Sunday, April 14th:  First NYC Maple Fest

100 West 77th Street, 10am

Hosting (and we quote), “the finest artisanal Maple Sugarmakers from throughout the Northeast!”  Taste and smell curated, artisanal syrup sweetness…  Sample maple candy and beverages…  Expand your syrup product knowledge!!  Sponsored by Grand Bazaar and Maple Craft Foods.  Free!!  

Coming up soon:

Friday, April 26th:  Arbor Day 

Everywhere There’s A Tree

So why not (after recycling electronics) take a stroll along a UES Avenue or through a UES park admiring the trunks, branches and foliage described in your The Central Park Tree Guide

Friday, April 26th:  Schurz Park Electronic Recycling Event

Carl Schurz Park, East End Avenue & 86th Street, 10am-4pm

So you’ve been postponing that trip over to Best Buy with a taxi full of aged electronics…  Lucky you, you’ll soon be able to shed it all-but on your front doorstep!!  Organized by Lower East Side Ecology Center.  Free.  For what’s accepted

Friday, April 26th – Monday, April 29th:  Earth Day City  Nature Challenge

Your City Neighborhood, Round the Clock

Learn more about your local flora and fauna while helping scientists document the nature in your neighborhood and having one great time!!  From April 26th to 29th, over 150 cities and millions of people on 6 continents will compete to make the most observations of wild plants and animals in their areas!!  All you need is the free mobile app iNaturalist to join in on the fun! And talk about family friendly!!  (Reminder:  The person with the most iNaturalist entries ever lives right among us on the UES!!)  For the complete lowdown

Monday, April 29th:  Beyond Plastics Forum

Pace University, Pace Plaza, 3 Spruce Street, Bianco Room, Manhattan, 6–8pm

A variety of experts speak to the challenges and potential for victory posed by a world awash in you-know-what!!  (But, hey, we’re a state that’ll soon be banishing plastic bags!!)  Free.  To pre-register (a must)… 

And so another month commences:

Monday, May 6th:  6th Annual Esplanade Friends Spring Benefit

The Bentley Hotel, 500 East 62nd Street at York Avenue, 6:30-8:30pm

Set foot on our East River Esplanade of late?  Bet you’ve been amazed at steady transformation…  The lovely landscaping along the Rockefeller U…  The GreenParkGardeners’ amazing natural pollinator-friendly garden…  The sea of flowering bulbs and summer flora in the 96th Street Planter…  The on-going work by Hospital for Special Surgery and Sloan-Kettering in the Seventies…   So much accomplished!!  So much to be done!!  And we all can be a part of a magnificent UES waterfront soon-to-be!!  Tickets from $150.  For complete details

Monday, May 13th:  The Hunter College Choir Presents Mozart’s Requiem

Hunter College Assembly Hall,  North Building, 695 Park Avenue (entry on 69th between Park and Lexington Avenues), 7:30pm 

One marvelous spring concert that includes not only the Requiem but the Vesperae solennes de confessore,  Laudate Dominum and Ave verum Corpus, too!!  Free.   For more…    (Thanks to Linda Goldsmith for the tip!!)

Thursday, May 23rd:  2019 NYC Food Waste Fair

Brooklyn Navy Yard, 63 Flushing Avenue,  Building 77

And we quote:  “An interactive experience connecting food, beverage and hospitality professionals and home cooks alike with workshops forums, lectures and film on achieving zero food waste, sustainable waste management, on-site composting, anerobic digestion and very much more!!   (Encourage your favorite restauranteurs to attend!!)  Tickets, $20-$60  (Use “ILOVECOMPOST” for a 10% discount!!)  For the full monty

A moment for some miscellaneous activism:

If you think stream-lining applications (i.e. making it easier to get them) for off-shore drilling is a poor idea

And that clean water protections should remain unchanged

And that prohibitions against importing ivory into the U.S. should stay in place

Why not lend downtown neighbors a hand with the same kind of up-zoning issues we’re fighting up here…?

Then:

As bad as we thought our infrastructure is

The state of the modern American Bison

Another NYS landfill fails to play by the rules

On the upswing:

Opposition to the Williams pipeline is stiffening what with a protest march across Brooklyn Bridge set for Thursday, April 18th at 5:30pm.

Amazing none presently exists, but Borough President Brewer, Council Speaker  Johnson and Council Member Rosenthal have proposed creation of a database of empty storefronts in NYC…

There’s now a process for recycling lithium ion batteries!! 

New Mexico’s committed itself to 100% carbon free energy by 2045

No surprise but now there’s science:  Greener childhoods result in happier adults

Brighter and lighter:

Ancient Roman fast food

Time for some animals:

And a pair of adorable local kitties in need of a forever home… 

Yup (and we love it!), our NYS Environmental Conservation Officers are doing a trout census

Victory for endangered frogs!!

Spring migration begins with a single eagle… 

The ferret and the atomic particle accelerator

Cats and their names

Why zebras have stripes

As ever, we close with the Hudson River Almanac:

3/26 – Manhattan, HRM 2: Our eel mop is deployed outside of The River Project’s Wetlab on Pier 40 and is set to capture glass eels coming in from the sea. The eel mop did well this week with other fishes as well. They included two immature naked gobies (25-30 millimeters (mm)) and an immature back sea bass (25 mm). 
– Siddhartha, Diamond Leonard, April McIlwaine, Toland Kister

[Eel mops are a basketball-sized tangle of polypropylene tentacles placed in the river and found by glass eels to be a very cozy way-station on their trip upstream. The mop can be lifted out, shaken, and glass eels will fall into a waiting bucket. The Atlantic State Marine Fisheries Commission literature has the perfect name for the mops: Medusa device. Medusa was a priestess in Greek mythology. In a fit of anger, the Greek goddess Athena, daughter of Zeus, transformed Medusa’s hair into a head of snakes. As the eel mop gyrates in the current, it conjures that image.  – Note: one inch = 25.4 millimeters (mm)]  – Tom Lake

3/26 – Manhattan: We made our weekly check this afternoon on our research sampling gear in Hudson River Park at The River Project’s sampling station on the lighthouse tender Lilacat Pier 25 and found what has been the usual assemblage of invertebrates that populate the inner pier area of Manhattan’s west side. They included shore shrimp, mud dog whelks, isopods, and mud crabs. 
– Siddhartha, Diamond Leonard, April McIlwaine, Toland Kister

3/29 – Hudson River Watershed: This week’s fish is the naked goby (Gobiosoma bosc), a seasonally resident marine species. The naked goby is number 207 (of 228) on our watershed list of fishes. If you’d like a copy of our list, email:  trlake7@aol.com.

naked goby

A Naked Goby

Naked gobies are small estuarine fish, usually less than 75 (mm) long, found in shallow, sandy inshore areas of the lower estuary. They lack scales on their body, hence the common name “naked.” Their pectoral fins form a disk on their abdomen and when kept in aquaria, will often “stick” themselves to the side of the glass. In the distant past, when the river had extensive oyster beds – their preferred habitat – it is likely that the naked goby was much more common. – Tom Lake

Yours in perpetual greenness,

UGS

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Happy Earth Hour Day, UESiders!!

Of course, we all know how we celebrate:  Tomorrow, Saturday, at 8:30pm, wherever on our home planet we might be, we turn lights off for the next 60 minutes!! 

Perfect excuse for a candlelight dinner…  To take in a movie…   You name it (as long as no light bulbs are involved)!!

Or maybe just take an hour’s rest as this crazy-busy April begins:

Now:  Volunteer for the Hudson River Eel Count Project

You Can Sign Up Online

For the last dozen years, teams of scientists, students and community members have collected, counted, measured, weighed and release glass eels, a species in decline over much of its range and in need of a base studies for conservation…  And one of those community members could be you!!  For more on the eels, the project and how to sign up

Saturday, March 30th:  82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket

82nd Street between First and York, 9am–2pm

Compost & Clothes Collection, 9am–1pm

Participatory Budget Voting at the Market this Saturday at 10am-1pm!!

At their tables will be American Pride Seafood, Bread Alone, Samascott, Ole Mother Hubbert, SunFed Beef,  Ballard Honey, Hawthorne Valley (with  Consider Bardwell items), Gayeski and Nolasco Farms!!

Then there’s this news from Mega Market Manager Margaret:  “Spring is in 82nd Street air…  Which this week means Alewife will be at the market with freshly picked spinach and arugula (in addition to a some storage crops)!!  Could this mean the first spinach salad of the season??!! 

No question, as spring crops begin to appear on market tables, our “winter only” farmers – Nolasco Farm and Hawthorne Valley – deserve our special thanks for showing up through all kinds of crazy weather and  keeping our market and neighborhood kitchens well-stocked thoughout winter!!  (Both will be with us for another month or so, until the season farmers return on a regular basis!!)”

So, do reach out and give our winter friends a big, warm thank you!! 

Last Week’s Recycling Totals –  86 lbs batteries;  15 lbs cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges;   4 pairs eye glasses;   12 compost bins;  37 bags of clothes

Wow!!  (Only mascara wands missing…)

Saturday, March 30th:  Plover Fencing Volunteer Event

Piping Plover Nesting Areas, Bayville, Long Island  10am-12:30pm

A sure sign of spring?  Migrating Piping Plovers (endangered) and American Oystercatchers (of conservation concern) arriving  on Long Island!!   Arriving, nesting and needing protection for their chicks!!  One big way to help?  Audubon’s  annual day installing string fencing and signage are those nesting areas!!  For more and to sign on

Saturday, March 30th to Sunday, April 7th:  Participatory Budget Vote

Locations Around Districts 4 & 5 and Online (commencing on March 30th)!!

Really worthy community projects to choose from and all’s that needed is YOUR TOTALLY IMPORTANT VOTE!!  Couldn’t be easier, folks!!  Just be a resident of either CM Kallos’ or Powers’ Districts, be 11 years old or in at least 6th grade!!  Let’s spend the CMs $1M really well!!

On the horizon:

Friday & Saturday, April 5th & 6th:  37th National Pesticide Forum 

New York Academy of Medicine, 1216 Fifth Avenue

The mission:  Eliminating pesticides where we live, work, learn and play…  And heaven knows, NYers encounter these poisons in at least one of those places…  Our parks!!  Time to be versed on the alternatives!!   Organized by Organic Strategies.  Includes a field trip to bio-diverse, toxin-free Battery Park and East Harlem’s NYCHA Wagner Houses Farm!!  General admission, $85.  Students, $25.   Business, $175.  Large non-profit, $100.  Small non-profit, 0 (Yes, zero.)  For more and to register

Tuesday, April 9th:  Presentation of the NY & NJ Harbors & Tributaries Study by the Army Corps of Engineers

Alexander Hamilton U.S. Custom House, 1 Bowling Green, 5-7pm

A study that matters to UESiders for at least 2 huge reasons:  1) Management/ mitigation of the increasingly severe storms affecting the waters surrounding our city and 2) the shocking proposal to run yet another fracked gas pipeline – the Williams Pipeline – and through the NYC harbor!!  One of  7 meetings in the area studied.  For the report…  A summary of that report…  And where to forward your comments

Wednesday, April 10th:  Mappy Hour Skills Series – Map Reading

718 Cyclery,  254 3rd Ave, Brooklyn, 7-9pm

Get familiar and comfortable reading a variety of types of maps, as well as knowing how to use your newly acquired knowledge for navigation in the woods or on whatever terra  you might find yourself!!  Sponsored by Mighty Hachet.  $25.  For more and to register (a must)

Saturday, April 13th:  Environmental Stewardship Day at Ruppert Park

Ruppert Park, Second Avenue Entrance, 10am-1pm  (rain date April 27th)

Join our friends and Ruppert Park Stewards, the Moslem Volunteers for New York as they transform this long-neglected public space into an UES jewel/oasis!!    Beautify, plant and mulch!!   Partake arts, crafts music, refreshments and more!!    Totally family friendly!!  Just let them know you’re coming (a must)…

Saturday, April 13th:  Schurz Park Easter Egg Hunt!!

East End Avenue at 86th Street, 11am–1pm

Hunt for eggs!!  Get a glitter cheek or hand stamp!!  Get up close and personal with the Carl Schurz Easter Bunny!!  Free!!  (Parent Alert:  Continuous waves of egg hunts commence at 11 and continue every 20 minutes until 1!) 

Wednesday, April 17th:  Indoor Climbing with Mappy Hour

Brooklyn Boulders Queensbridge,  23-10 41st Ave, Long Island City,  7-8:30pm 

Described by the ultra outdoors enthusiasts of Mappy Hour as, “a night of bouldering and climbing”!!  All skill levels welcome.  $29 for a one day pass.  To reserve/register for a place…  And for tickets…  (Yes, two separate operations!)

Monday, April 22nd:  Earth Day Mystery Green Tour

Around Manhattan, several tours at various times

Sites this year might include a river education lab right on the Hudson River, a zero-waste office, a state-of-the-art NYC Department of Sanitation facility and/or a rooftop farm!!  A partnership between Atlas Obscura and The Earth Day Initiative.  $28.  For more and tickets

Tuesday, April 23rd:  Earth Day 2019!!

Union Square, 12-6:30pm

Dozens of environmental non-profits, green businesses, kids’ activities, live performances and more!!  The traditional center of NYC festivities honoring the Mother Planet!!  Free!! 

Thursday & Friday, April 25th & 26th:  Older Adult Employment Strategies, Support and Job Fair

Lenox Hill Neighborhood House, 331 East 70th Street, Thursday – 9:45am-1pm, Friday – 10am-1pm

Calling all older adults!!  Interested in some gainful employment?   Then tap into this dual session event organized by our Senator Krueger!!  Thursday’s session covers job search strategies and support…  Friday’s job coaching, resume development, a LinkedIn workshop, a photo shoot AND 20 employers seeking to hire older individuals!!  The only three caveats here:  Participants must be Senator Krueger constituents, must bring their present resume and must sign up or  212-490-9535.  Co-sponsored by New York Public Library Science, Industry and Business Library.  

Friday, April 26th:  Schurz Park Electronics Recycling Event

Carl Schurz Park, East End Avenue & 86th Street, 10am-4pm

So you’ve been postponing that trip over to Best Buy with a taxi full of aged electronics…  Lucky you, you’ll soon be able to shed it all-but on your front doorstep!!  Organized by Lower East Side Ecology Center.  Free.  For what’s accepted

Saturday, April 27th:  The New World of the Number 7 Train Tour

Meeting place provided with reservation, 10am-5:30pm

Veteran tour meister Jac EIchenbaum leads a series of 6 walks – each an gem – commencing with the the transportation corridor forged by the Number 7 from its first days serving the city in 1914!!  $49.  For more and to RSVP

Coming up in May:

Saturday, May 4th:  Keys to the City – The Ultimate Scavenger Hunt

All Around Town, 10am-4pm

And we quote, “50 clues, 2 boroughs, 1 winner. The Museum of the City of New York presents the ultimate New York City scavenger hunt”!!  Yup, it’s raising funds for the MCNY while having a great time!! $50.  For details and to sign up

Monday, May 6th:  6th Annual Esplanade Friends Spring Benefit

The Bentley Hotel, 500 East 62nd Street at York Avenue, 6:30-8:30pm

Set foot on our East River Esplanade of late?  Bet you’ve been amazed at steady transformation…  The lovely landscaping along the Rockefeller U…  The GreenParkGardeners’ amazing natural pollinator-friendly garden…  The sea of flowering bulbs and summer flora in the 96th Street Planter…  The on-going work by Hospital for Special Surgery and Sloan-Kettering in the Seventies…   So much accomplished!!  So much to be done!!  And we all can be a part of magnificent UES waterfront soon-to-be!!  Tickets from $150.  For the total lowdown

Monday, May 13th:  The Hunter College Choir Presents Mozart’s Requiem

Hunter College Assembly Hall,  North Building, 695 Park Avenue (entry on 69th between Park and Lexington Avenues, 7:30pm 

One marvelous spring concert that includes not only the Requiem but the Vesperae solennes de confessore,  Laudate Dominum and Ave verum Corpus, too!!  Free.   For more…    (Thanks to Linda Goldsmith for the tip!!)

What would a week be without some miscellaneous activism:

As in if you believe the governor should be discouraged from building an $88M fracked gas plant to heat and cool the NYS capitol complex (rather than geothermal), give him a quick call at 518-474-8390…

Or if you’re still in the endangered gray wolf’s corner and think it should remain protected

And the headline reads:  “U.S. weakens first global commitment on curbing single-use plastics“…

More reason still for an end to landfill… 

Good to be informed on rising contentiousness over and future of Sutton Place’s Clara Coffey Park…  

Brightening:

The Great American Cardboard Comeback

Don’t we all want our coffee green as can be

An injured hawk…  A rhino skull…  Conservation Officers had another hectic week

And from the world of animals:

Yikes!!  Headed up north in NYS to Essex County?  Be alert for rabid critters the DEC advises!!

Check out pix documenting the result of NYS’s and USFWS’s work with our migrating waterfowl… 

Of course, Central Park’s a red hot spot to view migrating birds of all kinds… 

(That mandarin duck now residing in Central Park?  It’s now been joined by another avian beauty…  A totally gorgeous blue heron!!)

How to steer clear of bear “encounters”

NYS trout and salmon fishing season opens April 1st… 

Trout Season Opens

And from the great Tom Lake of the Hudson River Almanac:

3/18 – Hudson River Watershed: This week’s fish is the brown bullhead (Ameiurus nebulosus), species number 77 (of 228) on our watershed list of fishes. (If you would like a copy of our list, e-mail: trlake7@aol.com.)

bullhead fish

A Bullhead

[Brown bullhead is a catfish native to the Hudson River watershed. They are one of eight members of their family (Ictaluridae) of bullhead catfishes and are found throughout New York State. They are a small species, rarely exceeding one-foot in length and feed primarily on Crustacea and small fishes. – Tom Lake]

(Who gives these names to our animal friends?!!)

3/21 – Hudson River, HRM 145-132: Last week’s harp seal as well as a harbor seal were still being sighted in the Hudson River between New Baltimore and Albany. An updated protocol was released this week from Maxine Montello, Rescue Program Director, Riverhead Foundation for Marine Research and Preservation to help, if you come upon a seal, document the presence of these marine mammals in the Hudson River.

– To report a sick or injured marine mammal or sea turtle, please call the New York State 24-hour Hotline at (631) 369-9829. If you have photos or videos of live marine mammals or sea turtles, please send them to sightings@riverheadfoundation.org. If you have photos or videos of deceased marine mammals or sea turtles, please send them to sightings@amseas.org.

[Marine mammals began visiting the Hudson River estuary following the Ice Age and after the retreat of glacial ice from the Hudson Valley about 13,000 years ago. With lower sea levels, it took a while for the ocean waters to find the lower river, but not long after the first of us arrived, about 12,000 years ago, marine mammals were likely quite common. Tom Lake

[The list of Hudson River estuary marine mammals documented in the Hudson River Almanac across the last 25 years includes:

– harbor seal (Phoca vitulina)
– hooded seal (Cystophora cristata)
– gray seal (Halichoerus grypus)
– harp seal (Pagophilus groenlandicus)
– common (harbor) porpoise (Phocoena phocoena)
– Risso’s dolphin (Grampus griseus)
– bottlenose (common) dolphin (Tursiops truncatus)
– Florida manatee-2006 (Trichechus manatus latirostris)
– minke whale-2007 (Balaenoptera acutorostrata)
– humpback whale-2016 (Megaptera novaeangliae).

3/21 – Saugerties:  I checked a local road in the Town of Saugerties after dark and found a relatively small movement of amphibians heading to their breeding pools. Over the course of 90 minutes, I encountered three Jefferson/blue-spotted salamanders, 15 red-spotted salamanders, and four four-toed salamanders. Oddly, there were no frogs seen or heard on or near the roadway this night. – Steve Chorvas

Dreaming in spring green,

UGS

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