Author Archives: Jim Wright

A Fond Farewell

Tom Yezerski Bald Eagle
I guess this is my last post, so I figured I should go with an image of a Bald Eagle over a Meadowlands marsh. This is a new illustration by Tom Yezerski, who has graciously shared his work with the Meadowlands Commission over the years. (Thanks for everything, Tom!)

I have loved my job at the Meadowlands Commission these past 6.5 years — lots of incredibly talented and generous people.

It has also been a pleasure to work with all the amazing nature photographers in this neck of the woods, and to share the wonders of the Meadowlands with so many people on our nature walks with the Bergen County Audubon Society and our Butterfly Days and Moth Nights.

Hope to see you in the Meadowlands. Until then, as my second-favorite cowboy, Roy Rogers, used to say, “Happy Trails.”

     — Jim W.

Our Next Free Walk Is Sunday — and Awesome

P1080128Our next free walk with Bergen County Audubon Society is our Sixth Annual Super Bird Sunday Walk in DeKorte Park on Feb. 1 — the same Sunday as the Super Bowl, just with lots of fresh air and no crass commercial craziness.

We’ll not only look for Bald Eagles and winter raptors, but we’ll be awarding prizes to the first person to see a bird species that was named for an NFL team.

(We may have gotten that last part backwards, but the stuff about the prizes is pretty much true.)

Details follow.

Continue reading

A Vintage Year for Leachate

DSCN9368-001One of the great things about retiring from the NJMC, if you’re lucky, is that you get a jar of vintage leachate. (If you don’t know what leachate is, consider yourself even luckier.)

This sample is from 1998, apparently, a very good year if you can get past the bouquet.

(Thanks, NJMC!)


Ron Shields’ Eagle Extravaganza

You just can’t beat Ron Shields’ photos of Bald Eagles in the Meadowlands. Ron took these on Wednesday somewhere in the region and was nice enough to share them today.

We saw at least five eagles Wednesday morning in a spot near the Hackensack River — and Alice and Al or the other two local adults we’ve been seeing were not among them. A lot of eagles around!


River Barge Icebox

DSCN9360Stopped by River Barge Park yesterday. The park is open but kayaking looks a tad dubious. Restrooms are still a no-go, so to speak, in case you are wondering.

Our New Bergenite Column: Welcome, Lisa

IMG_0408Jim Wright, who created this blog, also writes a monthly nature column for the South Bergenite. In his last column, Jim turns over the reins of the blog, and this column, to his colleague Lisa Cameron:

When I started writing this column for the South Bergenite 5½ years ago, seeing a Bald Eagle or Peregrine Falcon in the Meadowlands was a major event.

Now, as I write my final column before retiring on Friday, both of these endangered raptors have made amazing comebacks in the region, to the point where I counted five Bald Eagles and a Peregrine during a guided walk at Laurel Hill Park in Secaucus last week.

The first time on the job I saw a Bald Eagle  — through a window at the New Jersey Meadowlands Commission (NJMC) offices in DeKorte Park — I raced through the building and out the door in vain hopes of getting more than a fleeting look.

Last week at Laurel Hill, two adult Bald Eagles soared directly above me for almost a minute before taking their leave. Breathtaking. We have come a long way.

During my stint at the NJMC, it has been my honor to Lisa Cameron head shotchronicle and celebrate the eagles’ recovery as well as the region’s rebound — begun many decades ago and still continuing.

Through the Meadowlands Nature Blog, our frequent guided nature walks, and annual events such as Butterfly Day and Moth Night, I have helped the NJMC get the word out that the region’s wildlife is back in a big way.

Although I am retiring, the NJMC’s public outreach will proceed, full speed ahead.

My colleague, Lisa Cameron, will continue this column, the blog and — with the Bergen County Audubon Society —  continue our walks and nature events. Continue reading