Unfortunately, current practices would indicate that this is an appropriate name change for the (former?) Montezuma National Wildlife Refuge. For the past three years each of its marsh pools have been sequentially groomed to promote a plant-based ecosystem to encourage the waterfowl population — ducks, geese, and swans, but primarily ducks. This strategy, however, has decimated the fish habitat upon which water waders … Read More Montezuma Waterfowl Refuge?
Well, this blog has definitely been seen, because Ms. van Beusichem has now issued a brochure, Draining the Main Pool, Feeding the Waterfowl, which is available without charge at the MNWR Visitor’s Center. Nice try, but in my opinion it warrants no cigar. She merely repeats the glib arguments that we have already heard, albeit with a bit more cheerfulness. “The Montezuma National Wildlife … Read More Feeding the Waterfowl, An Update
West Shore Trail is in the northern part of the Montezuma Wetland Complex. It’s rather isolated; nobody seems to go there much except me. That’s too bad because now that the simulated drought is over, the water levels at West Shore have risen even higher than those at the main pool in Seneca Falls, and the resident wildlife is even more varied here than … Read More West Shore Trail
Babies! Just hearing the word prompts a smile. . .remember the debut of Baby Yoda? Springtime in western New York means that there will be lots of babies born in the wild. . . little balls of fluff that elicit oohs and ahhs from each observer. Some of them eventually poke their tiny heads above the nest rim, waiting for a treat; others learn … Read More Babies!
Grebes, they’re so weird. We have the (ubiquitous) pie-billed type here. They’ve come back stronger, I think, this year. . .or maybe I just didn’t notice them as much last year as I do now. They’re cute little things, like tiny ducks with a fancy-looking bill. But they’re definitely weird. They like to hide in the vegetation that grows in marshy water, but they … Read More So Weird.
Probably the most visited part of the sprawling Montezuma Wetlands Complex is Wildlife Drive, a 3.5 mile loop that allows visitors to take a hike from the comfort of their own cars. And today, April 1st, the gates were opened to welcome birders (and photographers) to the 2020 observation season. Even CoVID-19 could not prevent this long-awaited event — in fact, it’s one of … Read More Wildlife Drive Is Open, No Foolin’!
Maybe CoVid-19 can afflict the world population and threaten the global economy, but it can’t stop the world from turning or the seasons from changing. And yes, my dear readers, spring is here! If you don’t believe me take a look at some sure signs of spring: Pussywillows! Swans gliding upon silky water Winter aconite (?) Ducks, Daffodils Blackbirds … Read More Signs of Spring
Officials have announced that the unusually cold weather may have prematurely ended duck-watching at Montezuma this year. But I suspect it has more to do with the induced drought. Draining the pools over the summer (2019) was done with good intentions and fairly good results. The lush grasses that re-grew on the marsh beds crowded out the unwanted plant life and promised a … Read More What? No ducks????