Friends of the East Brunswick Environmental Commission

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Bill Introduced to Name the Io as Official State Moth of New Jersey

Posted by Friends EB EC on March 27, 2015 at 6:20 PM Comments comments (0)


Working with New Jersey Assemblywoman Nancy Pinkin, (D-18th District), The

Friends of the East Brunswick (NJ) Environmental Commission, which started

and coordinates National Moth Week, has launched an effort to name the Io

moth as the official New Jersey State Moth.

 

On March 26, Pinkin introduced the bill calling for the Io (*Automeris io*)

to be named New Jersey’s state moth. If approved, it would make New Jersey

the first state in the U.S. to name a state moth.

 

The effort also has the support of third graders from Lawrence Brook School

in East Brunswick, who are learning about moths as part of their science

curriculum and writing about them in their writing program.

 

The Io is a member of the Saturniidae family of silk moths. Its wingspan

can be up to 3.5 inches. Males are yellow with distinctive eyespots on the

wings; females are rusty brown. They are found throughout North America

and are very plentiful in New Jersey.

 

Dave Moskowitz and Liti Haramaty, who co-founded National Moth Week in

2012, said that having a state moth will call attention to the importance

and beauty of moths.

 

“The Io moth is one of the most beautiful moths in New Jersey and an

excellent spotlight on our incredibly rich, but very much under-appreciated

moth biodiversity. It also is the symbol of National Moth Week, a global

citizen science project that originated in New Jersey and is focused on the

appreciation and study of moths,” said Moskowitz, who is president of the

nonprofit Friends of the East Brunswick Environmental Commission.

 

“By naming a state moth, New Jersey would show the rest of the country that

it values the role moths play in the ecosystem and recognizes their beauty,

biodiversity and importance to the environment,” said Haramaty, secretary

of the Friends of EBEC.

 

National Moth Week is a project of the Friends of the East Brunswick

Environmental Commission, an all-volunteer organization. It grew out of

local “moth nights” in the township, and quickly went global. Events now

take place in all 50 states and more than 40 countries.

 

This year, National Moth Week will be observed July 18-26. Registration on

the National Moth Week website is free for individuals and organizations

who want to register their moth-watching or educational events.

Salamander migration 2015 (8)

Posted by Friends EB EC on March 27, 2015 at 3:40 PM Comments comments (0)

LAST NIGHT WAS AMAZING!!! The number of people that came out to Beekman to see the migration was huge, easily over a hundred!!!. So many families and children. I suspect everyone got to see at least one spotted salamander and many spring peepers. All night there were so many spring peepers the road looked like popcorn popping. But it was the spotteds that stole the show. Things started out slow because it wound up drier than expected with just a few until about 9 or so. Then with rain coming in more and more started to appear. I have no idea how many crossed last night but it must have been a lot. The vernal pools were a cacophony of wonderful sounds too, spring peepers, chorus frogs, wood frogs, all singing their hearts out looking for love. The wood frogs are particularly exciting, because this was the first time in 12 years that we've had a breeding chorus and at both pools! In the first five years or so that we closed the road we never saw any. But the road closings have allowed the population to slowly rebound and there must have been dozens at the large pool. What an awesome night. It just took a little patience. Here are a few photos from last night.


Salamander migration 2015 (7) - Beekman Rd. to be closed today

Posted by Friends EB EC on March 26, 2015 at 10:40 AM Comments comments (0)

 

Last Night: Last night Beekman Road was closed out of an abundance of caution due to the varying forecasts that seemed to suggest temperatures in the mid-40’s and intermittent rain. Despite some decent showers mid-day and perfectly timed heavier rain right around dark, the temperatures fell to 40. In the past, we have seen salamanders on these kind of nights. But last night, reports from the road were that there was no migration or amphibian movement. Such is the joy of trying to think like a hibernating salamander or frog. We do our best, err on the side of caution for them and occasionally find ourselves wandering alone on an empty road on a wet, cold, raw night. Of course, that has its own sense of joy too, just absent what we hoped to see. Hey, it’s nature and we try our best to unravel its secrets, sometimes perfectly other times not quite so much.

 

Tonight: So tonight we will try again. The weather forecasts are not quite as wet as they were predicting it would be yesterday, but still it will be much warmer with temperatures around 60 (when were we able to last say that number in central NJ?) and probably some showers during the day and evening. Some weather outlets suggest the rain may even become steady after dark. I have no way of definitively knowing if there will be salamanders and frogs tonight but with temperatures around 60 and a chance of rain, Beekman will definitely be closed and I will definitely be wandering it with my flashlight. Hopefully the warmth will even trigger the first chorus of Spring peepers at our vernal pools.    


 

IMPORTANT REMINDERS ABOUT SAFETY AND FLASHLIGHTS

NEVER WALK BEEKMAN ROAD AT NIGHT IF THE ROAD IS NOT CLOSED - IT IS NOT SAFE!!!

If you come to the road, EVERYONE (Children included) MUST have their OWN flashlight.


Salamander migration 2015 (6) - Beekman Rd. to be closed today and tomorrow

Posted by Friends EB EC on March 25, 2015 at 1:55 PM Comments comments (0)

The Friends of the East Brunswick Environmental Commission is closely watching the weather and checking various weather outlets for the most up to date forecasts. Given the potential for precipitation (fortunately, finally liquid!!!) for tonight and tomorrow we are currently planning on closing the road both nights. There is some variability in the forecasts for tonight with some predicting showers or light rain as early as the late afternoon and others not until much later at night. All show expected temperatures in the 40's. Since we always try to err on the side of the safety of the salamanders and frogs and this year has featured unusual weather, closing the road tonight seems prudent. For tomorrow, there is a general agreement that it will be unseasonably warm (when was the last time we could say that?) with temperatures approaching or even slightly above 60 and least intermittent showers and rain. If this pans out tomorrow could be a great night for amphibians. Here is one of the weather graphs we regularly check from the WeatherUnderground.



IMPORTANT REMINDERS ABOUT SAFETY AND FLASHLIGHTS

NEVER WALK BEEKMAN ROAD AT NIGHT IF THE ROAD IS NOT CLOSED - IT IS NOT SAFE!!!

If you come to the road, EVERYONE (Children included) MUST have their OWN flashlight.




Salamander migration 2015 (5)

Posted by Friends EB EC on March 25, 2015 at 8:45 AM Comments comments (1)

Despite relatively cold temperatures there have been big changes at the vernal pools this week. A few days ago most of the ice was gone. We are carefully watching the weather and may close the road tonight and tomorrow night. The forecast for today looks like showers developing by late afternoon and temps in the mid-40’s. The showers\rain are forecast to continue throughout the night and then tomorrow looks to be very warm and rainy. Here is a photo of the larger vernal pool from Sunday.

 

IMPORTANT REMINDERS ABOUT SAFETY AND FLASHLIGHTS

Be carful when you park - there is a big ditch next to the parking area at the back to Tamarack - car have been stuck there a few times recently.

Please be aware that Church Lane is very dark and cars move at fast speeds. Use extreme caution when parking or crossing the road and especially be watchful of your children. NEVER WALK BEEKMAN ROAD AT NIGHT IF THE ROAD IS NOT CLOSED - IT IS NOT SAFE!!!

If you come to the road, EVERYONE (Children included) MUST have their OWN flashlight. It will help see things in the dark, make the night much more fun and prevent accidentally stepping on a salamander or spring peeper.

NEVER (AND WE MEAN NEVER) WALK BEEKMAN ROAD AT NIGHT IF THE ROAD IS NOT CLOSED!!!


Salamander migration 2015 (4)

Posted by Friends EB EC on March 15, 2015 at 12:25 AM Comments comments (0)

March 15 - Beekman Road will be closed for the first time tonight.

The Friends of the EBEC has been continually monitoring the weather and the vernal pools and has decided to close the road tonight for a variety of factors noted below. Please read the critically important safety notes below and follow them completely.

As for the salamander migration, a steady rain began overnight in the early morning hours and is forecast to continue through the afternoon tapering to showers by evening. Temperatures are forecast to rise throughout the day to 51 or 52. In a perfect salamander world, these conditions would be ideal to stimulate migration to the vernal pools. But anyone that has spent time in New Jersey the past two months knows that our weather has been very cold and snowy with temperatures way below normal and snow on the ground for an unusually long extended period of time. How these factors might impact the timing of the migration this year is a good and very interesting question. In a “normal” year before the migration, there would be choruses of spring peepers at the pools and elsewhere around the state and Red-backed salamanders would be easy to find under logs in the upland woods. I’ve yet to hear a peeper, haven’t heard from anyone that they have either and I haven’t seen a single Red-backed salamander yet this year. This unpredictability of the migration and when we might see the spotted salamanders and frogs is one of the most exciting aspects of trying to figure out when to close the road and when they might move. But we always err on the side of caution for the salamanders. I know I will be out on Beekman tonight. If there aren’t any salamanders, I’ll know it’s coming soon and will have learned a little bit more about their spring migration patterns. But if they do migrate, I’ll be doing my “Spring has Sprung” dance and celebrating that winter is really over.   Dave.


IMPORTANT REMINDERS ABOUT SAFETY AND FLASHLIGHTS

Be carful when you park - there is a big ditch next to the parking area at the back to Tamarack - car have been stuck there a few times recently.

Please be aware that Church Lane is very dark and cars move at fast speeds. Use extreme caution when parking or crossing the road and especially be watchful of your children. NEVER WALK BEEKMAN ROAD AT NIGHT IF THE ROAD IS NOT CLOSED - IT IS NOT SAFE!!!

If you come to the road, EVERYONE (Children included) MUST have their OWN flashlight. It will help see things in the dark, make the night much more fun and prevent accidentally stepping on a salamander or spring peeper.

NEVER (AND WE MEAN NEVER) WALK BEEKMAN ROAD AT NIGHT IF THE ROAD IS NOT CLOSED!!!



 

Salamander migration 2015 (3)

Posted by Friends EB EC on March 13, 2015 at 2:35 PM Comments comments (2)

Dave has been monitoring the weather and talking to field ecologists in the last 24 hours.  The rainfall has been pushed back even later and the temperatures don't seem like they will get as warm as forecast earlier. When it does finally start raining they look to be in the upper 30's too which is cold. Dave also checked Beekman and there has been a lot of melting in the last 48 hours but the woods still have a decent amount of snow. He also lifted a bunch of logs and it is still pretty cold under them and there weren't any red backed salamanders or other fauna normally found before the spotteds move. The vernal pools have also melted a bit and now have a very narrow fringe of open water which is a good sign that things are progressing along.

Based on Friends' obesrvation in the last 12 years we may see a large migration this weekend.  Or not...

Beekman Road will remain open tonight, but will most likely be closed tomorrow.  An update will be published here.



Salamander Migration 2015 (2)

Posted by Friends EB EC on March 12, 2015 at 2:35 PM Comments comments (0)

The Friends EBEC are continually monitoring the weather forecast and the ground near Beekman Road vernal pools for optimal migration conditions.  This weekend is shaping up nicely. Between now and then temps are forecast to be mild or at least near normal. Rainfall is expected to begin late Friday night or very early Saturday morning and continue all day through Saturday, possibly even as late as 9pm. Rainfall totals look high with 3/4 to an inch possible. Humidity Friday night preceding the rain looks relatively high as well. Given all of this and looking ahead 36 hours, the Friends may decide to close the road on Friday night and Saturday night. Friday night probably wouldn't feature much movement except possibly late but we have had a number of evenings when the humidity was high preceding a strong rainy low and saw movement despite not having rain. We will keep checking the weather, Dave Moskowitz will be back at the pools to check ground conditions, to help make a better and more educated decision tomorrow.



 

IMPORTANT REMINDERS ABOUT SAFETY AND FLASHLIGHTS

Be carful when you park - there is a big ditch next to the parking area at the back to Tamarack - car have been stuck there a few times recently.

Please be aware that Church Lane is very dark and cars move at fast speeds. Use extreme caution when parking or crossing the road and especially be watchful of your children. NEVER WALK BEEKMAN ROAD AT NIGHT IF THE ROAD IS NOT CLOSED - IT IS NOT SAFE!!!

If you come to the road, EVERYONE (Children included) MUST have their OWN flashlight. It will help see things in the dark, make the night much more fun and prevent accidentally stepping on a salamander or spring peeper.

NEVER (AND WE MEAN NEVER) WALK BEEKMAN ROAD AT NIGHT IF THE ROAD IS NOT CLOSED!!!


Salamander migration 2015 (1)

Posted by Friends EB EC on March 12, 2015 at 6:45 AM Comments comments (0)

With the warm temprature and rain in the forecast, salamander migration may start soon.  Updates and information on road closing will by published here, and on our Facebook and Twitter.  PLEASE read the safety reminders below.

IMPORTANT REMINDERS ABOUT SAFETY AND FLASHLIGHTS

Be carful when you park - there is a big ditch next to the parking area at the back to Tamarack - car have been stuck there a few times recently.

Please be aware that Church Lane is very dark and cars move at fast speeds. Use extreme caution when parking or crossing the road and especially be watchful of your children. NEVER WALK BEEKMAN ROAD AT NIGHT IF THE ROAD IS NOT CLOSED - IT IS NOT SAFE!!!

If you come to the road, EVERYONE (Children included) MUST have their OWN flashlight. It will help see things in the dark, make the night much more fun and prevent accidentally stepping on a salamander or spring peeper.

NEVER (AND WE MEAN NEVER) WALK BEEKMAN ROAD AT NIGHT IF THE ROAD IS NOT CLOSED!!!


NJ Agricultural Experiment Station Mobile App

Posted by Friends EB EC on February 6, 2015 at 1:40 PM Comments comments (0)

 

Stay connected with the mobile application for the Rutgers New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station, home of Rutgers Cooperative Extension. Access our publications, news, events, county office locations, and more.

How to Get the App

 

Follow the links below to access our app on the https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/rutgers-new-jersey-agricultural/id945484300?mt=8" target="_blank">Apple iTunes store and https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=us.rumad.NJAESandroid&hl=en" target="_blank">Google Play (for Android devices). You can also search for the app on both the App Store and Google Play by using the keyword: NJAES. Just follow the prompts to download, activate and enjoy the app.

Click for more information

http://nja.rutgers.edu/app/

The Great Backyard Bird Count - February 13-16, 2015

Posted by Friends EB EC on February 5, 2015 at 9:00 AM Comments comments (0)

The Great Backyard Bird Count is a citizen science project (which means everyone can participate) that is easy and fun.You don't have to be a bird expert - use the Friends' online East Brunswick bird guide to help you identify the birds in your backyard. In past years East Brunswick came in first in the number of birds counted in New Jersey! Contribute your ovservations in 2015!

Click on these links for more:

Local backyard bird guide

The Great Backyard Bird Count

Backyard Bird Count for kids

The Great Backyard Bird Count (GBBC) is a free, fun, and easy event that engages bird watchers of all ages in counting birds to create a real-time snapshot of bird populations. Participants are asked to count birds for as little as 15 minutes (or as long as they wish) on one or more days of the four-day event and report their sightings online at birdcount.org. Anyone can take part in the Great Backyard Bird Count, from beginning bird watchers to experts, and you can participate from your backyard, or anywhere in the world.   Read more

Are you a FriendJoin the Friends as a member and you'll be getting email updates on projects and events and you'll be able to upload photos to our online gallery.  Memership is alwasy Free. Most events and projects are Free. 

 


 


Verona Township Council passes anti-idling ordinance

Posted by Friends EB EC on February 2, 2015 at 5:40 PM Comments comments (0)

Verona officials are cracking down on idling vehicles. Recently, the Township Council passed a resolution banning drivers from leaving their cars running while parked for an extended period of time.

The resolution approved at a Jan. 20 meeting reinforces existing state law, which prohibits idling in a car or truck beyond three minutes while parked, according to Verona Environmental Commission Chairwoman Gloria Machnowski.   Read the article on northjersey.com

To learn more about idiling, watch an EB girl scouts video and sign an anti-idiling pledge click here.

Rutgers Geology Museum open house - Saturday, January 31

Posted by Friends EB EC on January 30, 2015 at 2:40 PM Comments comments (0)


Since 1968, the Rutgers Geology Museum has hosted an annual Open House and Mineral sale every January. The mineral sale is one of the largest in New Jersey, and has continued to draw hundreds of visitors every year.

Held every year on the last Saturday in January. Events take place between 9 am and 4 pm in the Geology Museum and Scott Hall on the College Avenue Campus. Check out the following links for the address and directions.

For more information visit the museum's website at https://geologymuseum.rutgers.edu/museum-events/open-house" target="_blank">https://geologymuseum.rutgers.edu/museum-events/open-house


The Friends' Freecyling in Japanese

Posted by Friends EB EC on January 26, 2015 at 3:20 PM Comments comments (0)

Can you read Japanese? Do you know of The Big Issue? The Big Issue is a not-for-profit social enterprise that develops solutions to help homeless, marginalised and disadvantaged people positively change their lives. The Big Issue Japan is part of this global enterprise that offers a business response to a social problems. Established in 2003, The Big Issue Japan publishes a high-quality magazine that is sold by homeless people on the streets of major cities.

A few months ago Taro Iwata, a reporter for the Big Issue Japan, set out to write a story about Freecycling and how free exachnage of goods can help homeless people. When reserching material for the story Taro found a story on the SEBS Rutgers newsroom about Freecycling in East Brunswick, and contacted the Friends for more information.

A story about Freecycling was published in the December 15 issue of The Big Issue Japan. You can see the story below, including a photo from one of our Freecycling events. I can't read Japanese, but if you can - please translate for us!

For PDF click here: Page 1  Page 2



Rutgers Cooperative Extension of Middlesex County - Calendar of Events

Posted by Friends EB EC on January 18, 2015 at 11:45 PM Comments comments (0)

Rutgers Cooperative Extension

 

of Middlesex County

 

January 2015 Happy New Year!

 

Calendar of Events

 

 

The following programs are available this month.

 

For more info on any program contact 732-398-5260732-398-5260.

 

We are on Facebook. Search “Earth Center of Middlesex County”, then “Like Us”.

 

 

This month’s offerings are as follows:

 

 

Rutgers Environmental Steward Program

 

Are you concerned about the environment? Become familiar with the sciences involved.

 

Classes take place on Wed. evenings, 6:30- 9:30pm January to May, 2015.

 

Call 732-398-5275732-398-5275 for details and registration. http://envirostewards.rutgers.edu/

 

 

Attention Landscapers & Land Managers: January 12, 13, 14, 20, & 21

 

Rutgers Organic Land Care Certificate Course

 

Learn how to build healthy soil, reduce dependence on synthetic pesticides and fertilizers,

 

and protect the environment. Get the edge on your competition.

 

Call for details on credit categories. www.njaes.rutgers.edu/organiclandcare

 

Register today at 732-398-5275732-398-5275.

 

 

Tuesday, January 20, 7:30PM

Lawrence Brook Watershed Partnership Meeting

 

For location and details contact Alan Godber 732-846-4476732-846-4476

 

 

If you would like to be removed from our list, simply reply with

 

“remove from IPCT” in the subject. Thank you.

 

 

Rutgers Cooperative Extension, a unit of the Rutgers New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station is an equal opportunity program provider and employer.

 

 

You'll need Skype CreditFree via Skype

Winter Birtding Day - Bald Easgles and Much More

Posted by Friends EB EC on December 21, 2014 at 9:05 AM Comments comments (0)

The East Brunswick Environmental Commission and the Friends of the EB Environmental Commission led a group of hardy souls around town yesterday, taking stock of the town's winter bird life. It was dark and cold with occasional flurries - the very definition of raw. We visited Dallenback Park, Edgeboro Landfill, Duhernal and Farrington Lakes and tallied 32 species. Highlights were a brown creeper, eastern bluebirds (always nice on such an almost winter day), a possible cackling goose, hooded mergansers, ruddy, black and ring-necked ducks and most especially a pair of adult bald eagles who put on quite a show for the group at the pond on the south side of the Edgeboro Landfill:

https://www.flickr.com/photos/98494447@N06/15447711674/" target="_blank">https://www.flickr.com/photos/98494447@N06/15447711674/

Thanks to Kirsten who kept the list!

We'll do it again in the spring.

Good birding.

Steven Albert

 https://www.flickr.com/photos/98494447@N06/15450325753/in/photostream/" target="_blank">

Photo credit: Steve Albert





 

Garden Plots Available for 2015 - returning gardeners

Posted by Friends EB EC on December 16, 2014 at 11:40 PM Comments comments (0)

Garden Plots Available for 2015

The calendar may say winter, but it’s not too early to reserve your plot in the East Brunswick Community Garden for 2015. Garden plots go quickly every year, and just a limited number remain for next spring.

This year, for the first time, returning gardeners may renew for one or two years at $10 a year.

If you register for 2015, you may continue to garden throughout the year.

For online renewals only, click here.

For more information for new or returning gardeners, send email to ebcgarden@gmail.com.

Located adjacent to the municipal complex on Rues Lane, The East Brunswick Community Garden is a project of the Friends of the East Brunswick Environmental Commission. The garden’s website offers timely articles, tips and tricks for gardeners, a calendar of events and information on donating surplus produce. Gardeners have donated more than a ton of surplus produce in the last few years.


 

Support the Friends

Posted by Friends EB EC on December 16, 2014 at 1:50 PM Comments comments (0)
Support the Friends with an end of the year donation !
The Friends of the East Brunswick (NJ, USA) Environmental Commission is a nonprofit (501 3C) organization dedicated to local conservation and environmental education.

Membership and all of the Friends events and projects are free and open to all.

 

Please support the Friends so we can continue bringing events and environmental project to East Brunswick. You can donate any amount by clicking on the PayPal Donate button below (You do not need a PayPal account).

 

All donations are tax deductible to the full extent allowed by law.

https://www.paypal.com/us/cgi-bin/webscr?cmd=_flow&SESSION=wJcaNO3mhY6vMzLvz8BrtbPaVXk96f_aeeAQ1JqvDodBxiszYjSFIctEjQG&dispatch=5885d80a13c0db1f8e263663d3faee8d66f31424b43e9a70645c907a6cbd8fb4" target="_blank">






East Brunswick Birding Day, December 20, 2014

Posted by Friends EB EC on December 15, 2014 at 10:45 AM Comments comments (0)

Come and join us on December 20 when the Environmental Commission will lead a day of birding around the town.

We’ll hit Dahlenbach, Edgeboro Landfill, Farrington Lake, and other locations. In previous years we’ve seen Common and Hooded Mergansers, Canada Geese, Mute Swans and other wintering ducks. Raptors have included Bald Eagles, Red-tailed hawks, Black and Turkey Vultures, and Kestrels. Perching birds might include Pipits, Kinglets, and White-throated, White-crowned and Tree Sparrows, and of course the feeder contingent: Nuthatches,

chickadees, titmice, downy and red-bellied woodpeckers. We’ll meet at Crystal Springs parking lot at 8 AM and finish up in the early afternoon. Rain date , Sunday December 21st.


Shop and support the Friends

Posted by Friends EB EC on December 14, 2014 at 11:10 PM Comments comments (0)

Shopping for holiday gifts?  Please use AMAZON SMILE (click on the logo below).
Amazon will donate a precentage of your purchase to The Friends.  All donation support Friends' events and projects, that are always free and open to all.   Thank you!

Friends Of The EB Eenv Comm

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