Daily Archives: December 16, 2011

Edith Wallace Wins Award

The Record ran a nice story today about Edith Wallace, a friend of the Meadowlands and a leader of many guided walks here.

Edith is the recipient of Bergen County Audubon Society's annual Harold Fineberg Conservation Award — and it is well-deserved.

If you've ever gone on one of her nature walks at DeKorte  — at Butterfly Day, for example, or her annual plant walk each June — you know what a great teacher she is.

The link is here. Congratulations, Edith!

A Poignant Monk Parakeet Story

Joe Pescatore of Bernardsville posted a version of this on Jersey Birds yesterday… (Thanks, Joe!)

I want to share a personal story:  Earlier this year, my older brother passed away quite unexpectedly and suddenly.  

My brother was a larger-than-life powerful attorney in Bergen County, and used to tease me in good fun about my being a birder.  Sometimes, there was a bit of sibling tension between us, but always love.

Wednesday, Dec. 14, would have been his 66th birthday.  I drove to Ridgefield, where he is buried at the English Neighborhood Reformed Church.  I stood beside his grave silently for 15-20 minutes, prayed and whispered quietly about how much I missed him.  

As I was about to leave, I said I was sorry for the things we sometimes said to each other and how I wish I could tell him how much I loved him, and if only we could speak to each other….at that very moment, I heard the odd sound of some unfamiliar noisy birds.  

I looked up, and passing directly over me was a flock of no fewer than 25 Monk parakeets.  Life birds for me.  Surely sent as a sign from Heaven.  I smiled as I departed.  Life birds:  an early Christmas gift from my brother.

Next Free Walk: Tuesday a.m., DeKorte Park

P1040341-2Our next free walk with Bergen County Audubon is Tuesday, Dec. 20, at 10 a.m. at DeKorte Park. 

There should be an excellent assortment of ducks by then, and — who knows? — maybe we'll see a rarity or two.

We'll walk on the Marsh Discovery Trail and check out the tidal impoundments for the wintering waterfowl and any straggling yellowlegs and Great Egrets.

Full information follows.

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2011 in Review: February

The year 2011 marked the dedication of a new riverside park in Carlstadt, lots of great nature sightings, and the continued partnership with Bergen County Audubon Society — more than 40 events that included a Kearny Marsh Cleanup, a Losen Slote Creek Park clean-up, a couple of free talks by "Meadowlands" children's author Tom Yezerski and the third Annual Kevin Karlson Shorebird Day.

We thought we'd celebrate by looking back at 2011, month by month.

Here are some highlights from February:

February 3: Winter Sunset, Valley Brook Ave.

February 4: Of Heath Hens and Passenger Pigeons

 February 10: Dark-morph Rough-leg on Disposal Road

February 15: Mill Creek: Common Teal, Gray Ghost, Plus

February 17: Pheasants and More

February 23: 'New' Disposal Road Raptor