July 10 Program: Ward Stone – Understanding Wildlife

If I see a fox during the daytime, is it rabid?

There’s a coyote that keeps staring at me; should I be nervous?

Why did the turtle cross the road (leaving a perfectly good wetland to try to dig a nest in an asphalt parking lot)?

NYS wildlife pathologist Ward Stone in his 2006 appearance at the Canaan Historical Society

Bring your wildlife questions to the Canaan Historical Society on Saturday, July 10. Ward Stone, wildlife pathologist for the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, kicks off the 2010 speakers series with a program on the wild creatures that visit our fields and backyards.  Ward attended school in Spencertown and Chatham, and knows the local landscape and its non-human inhabitants well. His CHS appearance in 2006 packed the house.

The program begins at 2 pm, and light refreshments will be served at the conclusion. The Meeting House and historical collection are open from 1 to 4 pm. Admission is free.

On Saturday, July 17 the Society welcomes Derek Grout, co-owner of Harvest Spirits in Valatie, who will speak about the creation and growth of the first farm-based distillery in New York State. Harvest Spirits produces award-winning Core Vodka, made from apples grown at Golden Harvest Farms in Valatie, and other spirits distilled from fruits grown by area farmers.

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2 Responses to July 10 Program: Ward Stone – Understanding Wildlife

  1. cvw198 says:

    I SO wish I could attend. The turtle question you posit puzzles me particularly. I suppose the parking lot recently covers the little entity’s former sandy nesting site. May I say again how much I enjoy your formative, and well-formatted, blog.

  2. canaannyhs says:

    Hello, Ms. W! Thanks for stopping by.
    I’ve been told that turtles return to the spot where they hatched to dig their own nests, whatever inconveniences we annoying humans have constructed in their paths. The same source said that species that spend time out of the water might not find rocky ground (as is found in much of Canaan) an insurmountable challenge; the rocks might even hold heat and assist the incubation process. Blacktop probably is a bit of a puzzle to their instincts (or maybe it just seems like a long stretch of an odd kind of rock), but if they do a bit of exploring they probably can find a diggable patch nearby.
    The Berkshire Eagle carried a story a few weeks ago about a snapper that chose a bit of open ground surrounded by a McDonald’s parking lot for her nest. The restaurant staff fenced the area off and will, I hope, be keeping an eye out and be ready to help the hatchlings to safety when they emerge.

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