Monthly Archives: April 2017


Is it just me or does this Tree Swallow have the disposition of a general? Thanks to Dennis Cheeseman for the photo from DeKorte today. Below, mating Tree Swallows, a  White-Crowned Sparrow splish splashing and some blooming Dogwoods. Thanks Dennis!



Awe-Inspiring Osprey

Mickey Raine sent in some great photos of Osprey at River Barge Park. Several news articles have recently noted their comeback and it’s just a reminder of the importance of environmental stewardship to help these and other species thrive.

We’ll have more from Mickey later today, including those adorable Harbor Seals who are  back sunning themselves on the docks at River Barge Park. Great photos, Mickey!



NJSEA-MERI Team Takes First Place in GIS Mapping Contest!

Left to right: Jeff Zielinski, Brian Wlodawski, Michael Stepowyj, Fawzia Shapiro

Congratulations to the joint New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority (NJSEA) – Meadowlands Environmental Research Institute (MERI) team that took First Place in the 30th Annual New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection GIS Mapping Contest in the “Small Format” category!

The team consists of MERI’s Brian Wlodawski and Michael Stepowyj and the NJSEA’s Fawzia Shapiro and Jeff Zielinski. They created an Open Space map of the Meadowlands District as part of the Authority’s participation in FEMA’s Community Rating System (CRS). The map delineates parkland, natural areas and other open spaces as well as special flood hazard areas.

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Welcome Dede!

Palm Warbler

A warm welcome to new blog contributor Dede Kotler! Dede took these photos during Tuesday’s Harrier Meadow walk. We look forward to seeing more from Dede in the future. Have a friend who may be interested in contributing? They can email their photos to

Savannah Sparrow

Northern Mockingbird

Harrier Meadow

Don Torino’s Life in the Meadowlands: Earth Day 2017

We have come a long way since the first Earth Day 47 years ago. The Clean Water Act and the Endangered Species Act have helped bring back the Bald Eagle, Peregrine Falcon and Osprey from the brink of extinction to where they have become almost a common sight here in the Meadowlands.

But even as climate change threatens the future of our planet, our biggest challenge ahead may be getting people to reconnect with the nature that exists right around them, every day, in their local communities and even in their own backyards.

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