What's Your Nature?

Become a Nature Up North explorer to share your encounters with wild things and wild places in New York's North Country. Post your wildlife sightings, landscape shots, photos from your outings, and even your organization's events!

Just Our Nature

Nature Up North program blog

Leprechaun Trees

Haw berries. Photo: FreeUsePhotos, Flickr Creative Commons.

Leprechaun Trees

My earliest memory of St. Patrick’s Day is how angry it made my mother, who holds dual Irish-American citizenship and strongly identifies with her Celtic roots. It was not the day itself which got her Irish up, so to speak, but rather the way it was depicted in popular American culture: Green-beer drink specials at the bars and St. Patrick’s Day sales in every store, all endorsed by grinning, green-clad, marginally sober leprechauns.

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Cattails: A Tale of Nine Lives

Photo: Julie Falk, flickr.com

Cattails: A Tale of Nine Lives

The two cats at my place have endured life-threatening traumas such as falls, fights, and the compulsory “devotions” of small children. It’s amazing the hazards they can survive. Sadly, my contacts in the veterinary field continue to assert that cats have but a single life, and that the whole nine-lives thing is just a cat tale.

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Wrangling Today, Protecting Tomorrow

Wrangling Today, Protecting Tomorrow

The Canadian goose population began to decline in the 1970s due to increased harvesting. However, long-term efforts from our dedicated local Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) are successfully reversing the decline.

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A North Country Turtle in Trouble

A North Country Turtle in Trouble

Perhaps due to their iconic shells, great longevity, and slow movements, turtles form an assemblage of about 320 species that are instantly recognized and often loved, by nearly everyone.  However, according to the International Union for the Conservation of Nature, turtles as a group are declining worldwide, faster than nearly every other vertebrate group.  Threats include widespread habitat loss, exploitation for food and for the pet trade, and fragmentation of habitats by roads and agricultural fields.

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Fish Forestry

Lost Pond Trail. Photo: Bill Hill, 2019

Fish Forestry

As many anglers know, trees and trout are closely related. Not in a family sense, of course. And not like the way in which tomatoes and fish were briefly married in a 1996 experiment at Oakland, California-based DNA Plant Technology in an attempt to get a frost-tolerant tomato (or possibly a saucy fish). If it weren’t for tree cover, cold-water fish species would not survive in most of the streams they now inhabit.

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Nature Up North 2020 Calendar Photo Contest

Nature Up North 2020 Calendar Photo Contest

It's midsummer, and that means it's time for our annual call for submissions for the Nature Up North 2020 Calendar!

Over the years, members of the community have shared thousands of photos, observations, and stories with us online at www.natureupnorth.org/encounters.  Each year in September, we select our favorite photos from the previous 12 months to highlight in our annual Nature Up North Calendar. Photos selected range from wildlife sightings and landscapes to game camera pics and photos from outdoor adventures.

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Meet our Summer 2019 Naturalist Interns!

Meet our Summer 2019 Naturalist Interns!

Nature Up North is pleased to introduce our 4 summer naturalist interns, Emily, Val, Grace and Lydia. We are thrilled to have them working with us this summer to bring more public events, citizen science, and outdoor fun to the North Country community. Read below to learn more about each of them and to hear what they've been getting up to so far!

Emily and Val

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Controlling Lily Leaf Beetle – Part I

Lida Rose, Flickr Creative Commons

Controlling Lily Leaf Beetle – Part I

Gardeners throughout the northern United States are likely familiar with the Lily Leaf Beetle (Lilioceris lilii), a non-native invasive insect that can quickly decimate lilies in gardens.  However, the beetle also has potential to extirpate populations of native lilies.  In North America, native lilies tend to grow in small, low-density populations.

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Large Predators: Who Lives in Northern New York and Who Once Did?

Black bear photographed outside Parishville, NY (submitted to natureupnorth.org by Carla Jean LaFave)

Large Predators: Who Lives in Northern New York and Who Once Did?

What comes to mind when you think of a large predator? Maybe a powerful lion? Or a burly bear? Did you know that the Adirondacks and all of New York State were once home to a variety of top predators, including cougars, wolves, wolverines, lynx and black bears? Out of these five species, only one is still present here today… maybe you’ve seen it. That’s right, the only remaining top predator in New York State is the black bear (Ursus americanus).

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The Bell Pepper Story: Too Much Clapping, Not Enough Applause

Photo: Red Bell Pepper, Flickr Creative Commons (Theo Crazzolara)

The Bell Pepper Story: Too Much Clapping, Not Enough Applause

April 1, 2019 marks the 90th anniversary of the development of the modern sweet pepper, also known as the bell pepper. Native to Central America, as well as to Mexico and northern South America, there is evidence that numerous types of peppers (Capsicum annuum) have been cultivated by native peoples for at least 6,500 years.

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