Get all the details about Lupine Fest! Look inside!
May 2019 Pine Bush Post
The importance of wild blue lupine
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Big news in the Pine Bush…
Saturday, May 18 10am-4pm Witness the magic of spring at our annual Lupine Fest! Fields of violet lupine flowers and fluttering Karner blue butterflies set the stage for visitors to explore and support the Albany Pine Bush Preserve and our partners. Visitors can enjoy nature walks, hands-on activities with community partners, music, games, crafts, food, vendors and more!
Highlights include: • Music with the WhipperSnappers and B95.5 • Live Local Wildlife Programs by Michael Clough • Meet the Lupine Lady • Wildland Fire Trucks • Nature Activities with Community Partners • Craft & Food Vendors • Face Painting • Make Your Own Tie-dye Shirt • Storywalk & Guided Tours • Old Fashioned Photo Booth • And MORE!!!
All parking will be at 302 Washington Avenue Ext. Shuttle bus provided. On-site parking for people with disabilities only. No pets allowed at this event.
Become a Certified Seed Collector The APB Certified Seed Collector is an important and greatly appreciated volunteer position, essential to maintaining the integrity of the Albany Pine Bush Preserve as a globally rare ecosystem.
Consisting of approximately 3,300 acres, the preserve supports a globally rare inland pine barrens ecosystem which is home to more than 76 species of rare and endangered plants and animals. Of the 3,300 acres of protected land, only two thirds of the acreage currently supports pine barrens habitat. The other third requires restoration with the intention of eradicating non-native vegetation and re-vegetating with native species. In order to maintain the unique plant species located in the Albany Pine Bush, we have committed to utilizing only sources of seed that originate in the Glacial Lake Albany footprint for all of our restoration work. This means that the many pounds of native seed required for restoration planting must be hand collected by preserve staff and volunteers. The APB Certified Seed Collector helps in this regard by scouting for native seed patches throughout the Albany Pine Bush Preserve, collecting ripe native seed, and leading volunteers on weekend seed collecting trips.
In order to become a Certified Seed Collector, volunteers must complete a minimum of 7 hours of classroom and in the field training. Topics discussed during training sessions will be: basic botany, plant identification, seed species ID, seed collecting notes, invasive species ID, APB rules and regulations, logistics of seed collection, and working with volunteers. Training begins June 4th.
#exploremore Family Scavenger Hunt EXPLORERS WELCOME!! Looking for adventure? You’ve come to the right place. The #exploremore Family Scavenger Hunt is an 8-week-long real-world scavenger hunt that traverses the Capital Region’s beautiful—and ecologically unique—wildlife preserves, just as spring unfolds. We want your family to witness firsthand the transformation—as fields erupt with Technicolor wildflowers, waterways surge with rainwater, and birdsong fills up the forests—from winter to summer. Though enabled by social media, #exploremore is all about immersing yourself in nature. Welcome to the great outdoors! This is life unplugged.
The Bethlehem Children’s School has partnered with local conservation groups The Nature Conservancy, Albany Pine Bush Preserve Commission and the Mohawk Hudson Land Conservancy to encourage families to witness the awakening of spring and explore the outdoors together in the region’s treasure trove of naturally preserved spaces.
HOW IT WORKS (simple version)
1. Check our Instagram and Facebook feeds each Friday for a riddle, and a hint about where you’re likely to find the answer. 2. Solve the riddle, then venture outside to find and photograph the answer on one of the partner preserves, being sure to include: 2 hashtags: #exploremore and #naturewisdomwellness & a geotagged location (likely the name of the preserve). 3. Be entered to win great prizes!
Rapp Road Historical Association 4th Annual Fundraiser at the Discovery Center May 10, 2019 at 6PM You are invited to attend the 4th annual fundraiser to benefit the Rapp Road Historical Association. This promises to be a great social and educational experience which will include a light fare and beverages, photo gallery and entertainment. Tickets are $35. Walk-ins welcome.
You don’t have to walk far to see lupine! Wild blue lupine will be in bloom this May & June all throughout the Discovery Center grounds. Enjoy a short walk around our gardens or on the 0.2 mile Discovery Loop trail.
Karner Blue Butterfly Walk Sunday May 26, 2019, 1:00pm Suitable for ages 6-10, tweens, teens and adults Don’t miss this chance to join Albany Pine Bush Preserve staff on a 0.9 mile hike in the Pine Bush Preserve to see the Karner blue butterfly. Once common in the Glacial Lake Albany sand belt, the Karner blue has plummeted in numbers over the past 40 years and is now listed as a federally endangered species. Come learn about the natural history of the Karner blue and what efforts are underway to rescue this species from the brink of extinction.
Fee: Free! Reservations required for all attendees (regardless of age). Children under 18 must be accompanied by an adult. Make reservations by calling 518-456-0655 or visit www.AlbanyPineBush.org/events
For more information about our classrooms, trails and other programs, visit the Albany Pine Bush Discovery Center at 195 New Karner Road in Albany or call 518-456-0655.
Happening on the ground…
By Joel Hecht, Stewardship Director May is the month of change in nature and in the Pine Bush. Everything that looked dead all winter starts to come alive again. In the Pine Bush the wild blue lupine is one of the first wildflowers to push through the sand, even before the last frost of winter. Lupine is perennial, is the only plant Karner blue butterfly larvae will eat, and will be found growing in the same place year after year as long as it has not been shaded out by other larger plants.
Each spring we add more lupine plants to the preserve in habitat restoration sites such as the one on Curry Road where the forest was recently thinned. Seeds are planted using an agricultural planting machine and will sprout rapidly if there is enough moisture. A long taproot quickly develops so when the hot dry days of summer soon arrive, the lupine plant will be able to get water from further below the surface and survive. Some lupine plants will bloom in the early fall of the year planted but most will not bloom until their second year.
Take a walk this spring along the Pine Bush trails in mid to late May and look for the purple flowers of lupine plants. Also, come to the Lupine Fest on May 18th at the Albany Pine Bush Discovery Center to learn more about lupine and all the other wonderful springtime surprises of the Pine Bush.
Meet the Team…
Victoria Stoodley, Visitor Services Specialist What do you do at the Pine Bush? I answer questions, hand out trail maps, manage the gift shop, tell people about the Discovery Center and the preserve. I help care for our turtles, especially wood turtle and love to talk about her. I’m always asking questions. I try to learn as much as I can about Pine Bush plants and animals, the trails, prescribed fires and other management tools, birding, ongoing research, butterflies, wildflowers, you name it. The more I know, the more I can help visitors discover.
Our latest research…
Science Lecture Series: Wildlife Camera Trapping in the APBP June 20 at 6:30pm Suitable for adults For the past seven years, science staff at the APBP having been using wildlife cameras to study mammals in the preserve. This passive survey minimizes impact to the wildlife while allowing us to document which species can be found in the preserve at different times of year and at sites in various stages of restoration and management. Field Ecologist and Entomologist Amanda Dillon will conduct this evening’s lecture about what we have been able to learn from our camera trapping study so far.
Free! Reservations required for all attendees (regardless of age). Make reservations by calling 518-456-0655 or visit www.AlbanyPineBush.org/events
Community Science: FrogWatch Training June 12 at 6:30pm, Suitable for adults and teens and tweens with caregivers Would you like to join our community science team in documenting frogs and toads in the preserve? Do you need a refresher on your frog calls? For over 15 years, community scientists have been reporting data on calling frogs and toads to FrogWatch, a community science program of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums. Join us this evening for an information and training session and learn how you can participate in this amazing program by listening to the frogs and toads calling in the Albany Pine Bush Preserve or, if you live nearby, your own backyard!
This Training: The evening will provide an introduction to FrogWatch, a community science program of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums. Volunteers will then train to become certified FrogWatch volunteers.
The Survey: From February through August, certified FrogWatchers will listen to and report frogs and toads calling in the Albany Pine Bush Preserve study area.
This opportunity is free! Reservations required for all attendees (regardless of age). Children under 18 must be accompanied by an adult. Space is limited so please reserve your spot for Community Science opportunities at www.albanypinebush.org/events or call 518-456-0655. Be prepared to sign up to survey a site for us at a later date.
Reminder Notes: This training will take place entirely indoors at the Discovery Center. FrogWatch surveys take place at night, so, consider signing up with a friend!