Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Jumping in with Both Feet! (week of 5/20/09-5/27/09)

After a day of orientation the stewards enthusiastically toured their monitoring sites. Then they each jumped in with both feet, and were on their own in the natural resource area. They made some great observations while monitoring, and met some great recreational users. Along the Salmon River corridor a steward reported a bald eagle sighting on two separate days. Salmon River stewards assisted the Salmon River Special Program Coordinator for the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation with streambank stabilization by planting approximately 900 stream willows.

Along the Eastern Lake Ontario Dunes & Wetlands Area recreational users were happy to meet and greet their stewards. It's becoming a tradition in some areas. As temperatures continue to climb and you seek the refreashing breeze along Lake Ontario or the Salmon River Reservoir, you are encourgaed to introduce yourself to your local steward; learn more about what it is that the stewards do, and what you too can do to be an informal steward of the natural resource areas that are important to you!

Salmon River Stewards Emily Freeman and Jim Katz plant stream willows that will provide streambank stabilization along the Salmon River.

Photos by Mary Penney, NYSG Dune/River Steward Coordinator.

Monday, May 18, 2009

2009 Steward Crew; They're Back!

They’re back! The Eastern Lake Ontario Dune and Salmon River Stewards will be in the resource areas starting Thursday May 21, 2009.

The Eastern Lake Ontario Dune and Salmon River Steward Program has hired six college students for the 2009 season. New York Sea Grant coordinates the program in cooperation with the New York State Departmental Conservation, New York State Office of Parks, Recreation, and Historic Preservation, and the Nature Conservancy. The 2009 stewards were hired from a pool of nearly 50 student applicants from across the country.

The 2009 Eastern Lake Ontario Dune and Salmon River Steward Crew (L to R): Paul Dawson, Liz Wolff, Stacy Furgal, Emily Freeman, Greg Chapman, and Jim Katz. Photo by Paul Focazio, New York Sea Grant.

Greg Chapman of East Concord, NY, is returning as Chief Steward. Look for Greg at Sandy Pond Beach Natural Area. Greg is a sophomore at SUNY college of Environmental Science and Forestry (ESF), where he will major in conservation biology. Greg enjoys hiking and photography.

Stacy Furgal will be a junior at SUNY ESF majoring in fisheries and aquatic science in the fall. She returns this season as the Deer Creek Marsh Wildlife Management Area (WMA) steward. Stacy is an Oswego County native from Williamstown and an avid outdoorswoman.

Paul Dawson, an Oswego County native from Mexico, will be a senior at SUNY ESF where he studies natural resource management. Paul enjoys flyfishing, backpacking, and canoeing. Paul plays rugby for Syracuse University when he's not on duty as the Lakeview WMA steward.

Elizabeth Wolff returns in 2009 to Black Pond WMA/El Dorado Nature Preserve. She is graduating with a degree in professional writing from SUNY Cortland, where she competed as a cross-country runner. Although Liz hails from Syracuse, she spends her summers along Eastern Lake Ontario in Ellisburg in Jefferson County.

Jim Katz, a senior at SUNY Cortland studying biology, will be a Salmon River Steward this summer. In his spare time, he enjoys birding, mountain biking, fishing, and Tae Kwon Do. Jim joins the program from Syracuse and has an interest in conservation biology.

Emily Freeman, an Oswego County native from West Monroe, will be a senior at SUNY ESF majoring in environmental studies. When not monitoring the Salmon River corridor, she enjoys wakeboarding, geocahing, hiking, and camping.

Mary Penney of New York Sea Grant, Oswego, returns for her fourth season as Eastern Lake Ontario Dune/Salmon River Steward Program Coordinator. Penney notes,"This year the Steward Program may be seeking student candidates to work as Salmon River Stewards for the fall academic semester: Anyone interested in the positions should contact the New York Sea Grant Oswego office at 315-312-3042."

The Eastern Lake Ontario Dune and Salmon River Steward Program is managed by New York Sea Grant in cooperation with the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation, and The Nature Conservancy.

With the unseasonably warm temperatures projected for the upcoming holiday weekend, you are encouraged to enjoy some of the great recreational opportunities in Oswego Jefferson Counties, and to get to know the 2009 Steward Crew!