"Principle No. 6: Observe wildlife from a distance."
A group of new studies from scientists at Boise State University and with the U.S. Geological Survey are demonstrating that bird species considered "tolerant" of human activity and also species that seem "comfortable" with urban nesting are more negatively impacted by human disturbance than had been originally thought.
The researchers studied kestrels and falcons that set-up nests near roads and on office buildings in urban areas. The peregrine falcons that have nested for the past decade on the top of the Rachel Carson Building, the Harrisburg-based headquarters of our state's Department of Environmental Protection, were part of the study sample. The researchers found that the birds living in highly-developed areas had elevated stress hormones and high rates of nest abandonment. In fact, the studies showed that kestrels living along Idaho's Interstate 84 were nearly 10 times more likely to abandoned their nests than kestrels nesting in less-developed areas.
Just about every Native American tribe called the June full moon the "Strawberry Moon." However, most Europeans knew this moon as the "Rose Moon." Either way, this month's full moon is this Sunday. Our Valley's strawberry crop and many of its rose bushes have already peaked, but they both occurred during the month of June. By the way, based on lunar events, the fishing for the rest of the month will be best from the 25th to the 27th. If you're heading to the shore, this coming Sunday and Monday will be the best days for crabbing and clamming this whole month.
Sierra Club members will lead a 10-mile loop hike at the R.B. Winter State Park on Sunday morning starting at 8:30. Those interested may call Joe Rebar at 570-259-0134 if they wish to go along. If you can't make it this Sunday, you're still in luck, because Joe will lead a similar hike next Sunday, June 30. Make sure to pack a lunch and bring along plenty of water to drink.