Happy Thanksgiving, Seanetters!

28 11 2013

You are always in my thoughts, Seanetters, and today, I am thankful for all the time, dedication, curiosity and good humor you bring to our project. Here’s a bit of that lattermost quality:

The elusive marine turkey, Turkus marinus. Thanks to Steve and Roberta Brezinski for the sighting.

The elusive marine turkey, Turkus marinus. Thanks to Steve and Roberta Brezinski for the sighting.

Enjoy your feast, and to those who celebrate, Happy Hannukah as well!

Recovering from vacation

26 08 2013

The chronology on this blog makes it look as though I wrote the 500th post and then disappeared on a two-week celebratory bender. This is not far from the truth. And since I labor under the delusion that you, my readers, would be interested in my vacation photos, here’s a pictorial tour of how I spent the past two weeks in Maine:

Hiked French's Mountain in Rome Maine.

Hiked French’s Mountain in Rome Maine.

Did some kayaking, with and without a young passenger.

Did some kayaking, with and without a young passenger.

Found a freshly dead salmon floating in the lake,

Found a freshly dead salmon floating in the lake…

...and made fish print (gyotaku) t-shirts with it.

…and made fish print (gyotaku) t-shirts with it.

Caught some bass,

Caught some bass,

and a whole slew of pumpkinseed sunfish.

and a whole slew of pumpkinseed sunfish.

Climbed up Bald Rock Mountain to look at Penobscot Bay.

Climbed up Bald Rock Mountain to look at Penobscot Bay.

and now I’m back. The blog will resume normal seabird business this week. Thank you for your patience and your indulgence.

Struggling back toward normal

17 04 2013

IMG_3582This is not the post I had planned for today, but I wanted to issue a widescale apology for any delays or lapses in my communication with you all this week. Monday, my husband ran just about all of the Boston Marathon, getting to around mile 25 before the course was closed. My kids and I were farther out along the race route, but they heard and saw things I wish they hadn’t. We’re trying to get back to normal now, but it’s slow going.

What will not surprise any Seanetter is that the first place I went yesterday morning was to my SEANET beach for my monthly walk. My younger son came along, and while we found no dead birds, we hung around listening to the harbor seals creaking and groaning out on the rocks in the river, and picking through the tidepools for periwinkles.

I am working hard to field all the emails and phone calls coming in from friends and relatives checking on us, and also trying to get my head back above water with SEANET. I have not forgotten you all, and being part of this program is one my great joys. I plead for your patience and understanding, and I promise, I’ll be back online with a Dead Bird Quiz before you know it!

19 02 2013


It’s not all that often that my personal blog aligns so perfectly with the SEANET blog, but this is one of those times. So here you go:

Originally posted on thestagecoachroad:

On Saturday we drove to Salisbury Beach State Reservation. We dropped off Christophe so he could commence his 17 mile run home, and the remaining three of us went out to walk the beach. We go outside a lot, in any weather, but our ventures to Salisbury are generally for the purpose of documenting dead birds for the SEANET program. This means a 1.5 mile round trip, and, when in the company of two young boys, about an hour and a half.

I was poking about in the piles of wrack and discarded plastic while the boys dug holes and inspected crab carapaces. Suddenly, I heard Simon howling. I turned around to see him nearly up to his knees in the water. His face was contorted with  shock and pain and he appeared paralyzed by the full force of the north Atlantic in winter. I hauled him up…

View original 295 more words

Merry Christmas, SEANET!

25 12 2012

To those who celebrate, Merry Christmas from me and the Christmas lobster buoy of MA_24 (Salisbury Beach, Massachusetts)!


Happy Giving Tuesday!

27 11 2012

How about this for the top of the tree? (photo: audubon.org)

Feeling drained by the orgiastic spending of Gray Thursday, Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, Something-or-Other Sunday, and Cyber Monday? Need to withdraw from the consumeristic melee? Here’s an opportunity to boost up your favorite organization (SEANET, I presume) by donating today on another day with a goofy name, Giving Tuesday. Here at SEANET, we keep our costs low by relying on our dedicated, uncomplaining volunteers to generate all of our data. But we do need support! Twenty dollars buys a couple boxes of rulers to measure wings, or a bunch of calipers for determining culmen and tarsus lengths. Fifty dollars pays for permission to use a few photos in our upcoming Field Guide to Beached Birds of the Southeastern United States. One hundred dollars gets me part of the way to a training session on Cape Cod to recruit more volunteers. Any amount helps, and we really mean it. We’re a lean, lean machine here at SEANET, and what you give matters. If you want something to wrap up and give a loved one this season, we have our ever popular SEANET t-shirts in three colors, and, for the somewhat stranger member of your family, we have the Field Guide to Beached Birds (Northeast edition). You can donate via check, or via the Tufts secure online giving form. For instructions on either, please visit our Donate page, and thank you!

I also want to offer you another option for your giving dollar. We could not do what we do here at SEANET without the support of the Wildlife Data Integration Network (WDIN) at the University of Wisconsin. Our database manager, Megan Hines, is some kind of miracle worker. And far beyond what they do for us, the WDIN has several invaluable projects going on, many of which I use daily. Their Wildlife Disease News Digest is my daily source for what’s brewing in wildlife populations all over the world. Cris Marsh and company do an incredible job of poring over a huge volume of information and distilling it for readers. As a blogger myself, I have a deep appreciation for what they do. None of what the WDINers do is cheap, so I strongly encourage you to support their very fine work this holiday season!

Happy shopping, and above all, happy giving!

More on eider movements

27 09 2012

A brief addition to Tuesday’s post: Josh has provided a link to this video that explains a bit more about the nature of the eider study. Unfortunately, Josh himself is not featured here, but the faculty members he works with give a good overview of the reasons for the study and how it’s done. And of course, the seaside footage is gorgeous! Even at 3am, and in the bitter cold, not a bad place to work.



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