Category

ecology
Happy! Biocitizen School is teaming with Superfun Chile to run Now Voyager, an 11-day field environmental philosophy (FEP) expedición for college students who want to learn to teach FEP. Departing from and returning to Santiago, Chile, we’ll journey from surf-paradise Pichilemu to the Andean peaks of the Tinguiririca range— While I was in Pichilemu developing Now Voyager curricula,...
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The Life Riparian (Cross-posted from Hilltown Families) Riparian is a strange sounding word that denotes “river bank”: the meeting point of river and land. We enter the “riparian zone” when we get close to a river. It is a place we want to be, because it brims with exuberant sounds and smells, and because it...
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I do get excited about maps like this one, which shows new areas in Chesterfield and Westhampton the USFWS is proposing for conservation. Here are the comments I sent USFWS, supporting “CCP Alternative C”: Dear US Fish and Wildlife Service, As a resident of Westhampton, Massachusetts, and director of the Westhampton-based 501(c)3 Biocitizen School of Environmental...
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The Biocitizen Corps was up to its knees in chilly flowing water again this Fall, catching and inventory the bugs who live in the substrates of our rivers and brooks. River bugs that trout love to eat, & that require cold oxygen-rich water, are the ones we hope to catch, because not only do trout...
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Biokids at Holyoke Dam From this month’s Ripple: Stories about Western Mass Rivers, cross posted from Hilltown Families The land is an organism, wrote Aldo Leopold, the Yale-trained game management specialist, about seventy-five years ago. An organism is alive, and its life is made up of the contributions of disparate organs, each of which would...
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This month’s Ripple cross-posted from Hilltown Families: Life Will Return to Our Rivers! The challenge we (who value these nonhuman lives) face is to turn the immense powers we have to obstruct life into powers that liberate it. Sweet as maple syrup, the thaw is coming. Sea lamprey, shad, herring, alewives, eels, sturgeon and the...
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Aesthetic value is a keystone of environmental philosophy. We love, and take care of, things we find beautiful. Biocitizen and HCC professor John Calhoun have made a commitment to work together for a year, walking together, learning, and creating art that is beautiful, that expresses important moments in, and facets of, Holyoke’s biocultural history. You...
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A perfect after-Thanksgiving hike for those who want to walk a few miles off trail, sweat a little and get the feel of what Nonotuck would be like if there were no houses around—i.e., if it was wild: because walking from the Westhampton Public Library over Mt Pisgah—i.e., the Berkshire ridges that divide the CT...
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If you know what bugs live in a river, you can gauge its health. So, every year just as Summer slips into Fall, the Biocitizen Corps ventures out and catches some, following EPA protocols, in a national citizen science initiative called “Rapid Bioassessments of Benthic Invertebrates.” Certain bugs need lots of oxygen. The cleanest coldest...
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Biocitizens—it’s rapid biotic assessment time! Which means: time to get into the rivers and collect the bugs that live under rocks. The bugs tell us—by their amount, variety and size—how oxygenated (& healthy) our rivers are: an annual “physical,” just like at the doctors’. The Biocitizen Corps reunites in the early Fall to care for...
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