We don't use post items about products on this blog, but wanted to give you a heads-up about our new NJMC T-shirt, featuring a Great Egret photographed at DeKorte Park's Shorebird Pool.
The colorful new T-Shirt is now on sale at the Tideland Treasures Gift Shop at the Commission’s Meadowlands Environment Center (MEC). The shirt is the first in a series of attractive, quality apparel promoting the Meadowlands District’s amazing natural resources.
The 2011 Bird of the Year T-Shirt, made of 100 percent cotton, features the NJMC egret logo on the front and a full-color photo of the bird on the back. The shirt is available in adult sizes small to XL for $14 and in sizes XXL for $16 and XXXL for $18. The second shirt in the series, the NJMC 2012 Bird of the Year T-Shirt, is scheduled to go on sale in November, in time for holiday gift shopping.
All proceeds benefit MEC programming, which includes highly popular, interactive natural and physical science programs for students in grades K-12 and public environmental education workshops for the entire family. More than 12,500 children participated in school programs at the MEC during the 2010-11 school year.
The Great Egret was chosen as the inaugural Bird of the Year because it is a large, stunningly beautiful white bird that is literally and figuratively emblematic of the Meadowlands’ astounding environmental recovery.
NJMC staffer Jim Wright, who keeps this blog, also writes a column every other Thursday for The South Bergenite. His latest, about what to expect in the Meadowlands in upcoming weeks, is posted here.
Rather than try to figure out where the summer went (I think all that rain pretty much washed away), I thought I’d use this space to look ahead to what autumn will bring in terms of new birds and other wildlife.
The new season doesn’t officially begin until next Friday at 5:05 a.m., but from the chill in the air some nights, you can’t be faulted for thinking fall arrived a week or so ago. Autumn always means a change of guests in the Meadowlands’ vast bed and breakfast for birds, and we’ve already had an early duck arrival or two (including a blue-winged teal).
If we’re lucky, we might get a rarity, like the northern wheatear (above) that showed up in DeKorte in late September two years ago and hung around for a few days — drawing bird-watchers from four states.
The NJMC Parks folks have managed to get DeKorte Park's Marsh Discovery Trail partly open again after it took a huge hit from Hurricane Irene.
The blinds are closed because of the damage, but the trail is open most of the way. The rest of the trail is under major repair/construction, with an eye toward opening the entire trail by year's end.
We apologize for the inconvenience.
Note: Not much bird life out there late yesterday afternoon — a few Great Egrets, assorted gulls and two distant terns. Did not hear any Marsh Wrens. Was good to walk out on the trail again.
We had a nice pontoon boat cruise at high tide yesterday morning, and saw several cool birds — including this Black-crowned Night Heron in Mill Creek (lower right) and this juvie or non-breeding Forster's Tern in Sawmill Creek Wildlife Management Area (lower left).