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Vermont Sets 5 Public Hearings on Deer Herd

NatureVt. sets 5 public hearings on deer herd

Waterbury, Vermont - March 23, 2011

Vermont's Fish and Wildlife Department is holding a series of public hearings on the state's deer herd.

Officials will share the results of this past hunting season and discuss the outlook for the next season. Hunters took two percent more deer in the 2010 season than they did in 2009.

There are five hearings, which all start at 7 p.m.
The first is March 24 at Burr & Burton Seminary in Manchester.

The remaining four will be held next week:
March 28 in Lyndonville, at Lyndon State College
March 29 in Montpelier, at Pavilion Auditorium
March 29 in Middlebury, Middlebury Union High School
March 30 in Springfield, at Springfield High School

The Middlebury hearing will be streamed live by Vermont Public Television, viewable on the VPT website at www.vpt.org/live.

WCAX News online at wcax.com
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A Winter's Walk


A Winter’s Walk


We are about to enter a small January thaw. The weather forecasters are saying the temperatures may hit 37 degrees. Sounds like the perfect opportunity to get out in the woods and get some fresh air. So grab those snow shoes, strap on those cross-country skis or just put on your Sorels and hit the woods.








Submitted by:

Nancy Nutile-McMenemy





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Couple works to save ailing American chestnut tree

NatureSPRINGFIELD — Dr. Randy Knight of Weathersfield usually spends his days in a hospital emergency room, tending to patients.

But early Friday morning, as the fog hung low in Spencer Hollow, Knight was busy tending to a different kind of patient: the ailing American chestnut tree.

Knight was meticulously pollinating the female flowers on two American chestnut trees growing by the side of Skitchewaug Trail, hoping to coax some chestnuts from the ailing trees before they succumbed to the chestnut blight, which has wiped out millions of trees in Vermont in the past 90 years.

High in a bucket truck from Davey Tree Service, Knight could reach the blossoms, which were close to the top of the 30-foot, three-trunk tree. He had placed paper bags over each promising female blossom on the tree about a week earlier and stripped off the dangling male catkins to keep them from being pollinated with another wild American chestnut or a Chinese chestnut.

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Nature read more (81 words)
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The Phoebe Babies are Here

NaturePhoebe's First Clutch Has Hatched read more (305 words)
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Herricks Cove Wildlife Festival

NatureOne of the top outdoor events of the year is scheduled for Sunday, May 3, when the 10th annual Herricks Cove Wildlife Festival is held in Rockingham to "celebrate the wonders of wildlife."

This event, by all accounts, offers a great opportunity for outdoor family fun and education.

The day-long event begins with an early-morning bird walk, but most events are scheduled 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Herricks Cove.

Herricks Cove is located at the confluence of the Williams and Connecticut rivers, and is noted for its birding opportunities. Designated as an Important Birding Area, Herricks Cove offers important habitat for waterfowl and songbirds, and provides a staging ground for migrating ducks, geese and warblers.

This year's event is expected to feature live wolves, owls, eagles and reptiles read more (347 words)
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Sweeping The River

Naturesubmitted by Steve Aikenhead

An eight-canoe flotilla recently swept the banks of the Connecticut River from above Windsor down to Ashley
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Wildlife habitat workshop

NatureA wildlife habitat workshop is planned for Sept. 6 in Weathersfield.

The workshop, sponsored by the Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department and the U.S. Natural Resource Conservation Service, is aimed at landowners, land managers and others with an interest in wildlife and wildlife habitat.

The event will be held from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Little Ascutney Wildlife Management Area. It will be held rain or shine.

Attendees will learn how to create wildlife habitat on their land or to enhance what is already there.

Experts read more (72 words)
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Merry Mulch - Recycle Your Christmas Tree

NatureMerry Mulch
Recycle Your Christmas Tree

You can recycle your tree and help restock the Weathersfield Food Shelf at the same time. Bring a canned good and a tree to the Weathersfield Transfer Station on:
Saturday, January 5
7:00 a.m.—4:00 p.m.
Sunday, January 6
12:00 p.m.—4:00 p.m.
Location: Weathersfield Transfer Station
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BRAT Bug Hunt Full of Surprises

NatureBugs abounded on a cool October Saturday, as BRAT Director Kelly Stettner guided area residents on a bug safari at the Welcome Park. These were not just garden-variety bugs: these critters make their home in the nooks and crannies on the bottom of the Black River! A source of food for fish and other animals, they play another important role throughout the year. By shredding and feeding on the leaves and other organic material that falls into the river, these invertebrates help to keep the river's cycles running smoothly. Some of them prefer very clean and pure water, while others can tolerate increasing amounts of pollution. This makes them a good basic indicator for a snap-shot look at a river's water quality.

The quick sampling taken by Stettner and the kids turned up an exciting variety of creatures including a pair of hellgrammites, a long-legged dragonfly larva, zig-zagging whirligig beetles, fishing spiders, a zebra-striped stonefly larva, a curling water penny, a sowbug and a generous helping of mayfly larvae. As expected, the most exciting finds were the Big Guys: three small crayfish and a huge predacious diving beetle.

The Bug Hunt was one of many planned by the BRAT for next year, through the group's WaterWorx educational program. Funding for the Bug Hunt came from a grant by the New England Grassroots Environmental Fund and from local donations. The BRAT wishes to thank Mr. Harold Grout for the monumental amount of work he has put into the lovely Welcome Park over the years. His efforts have made an indelible mark on Springfield by encouraging everyone to visit with the Black River.

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