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Volunteer for annual eel count project

Ready for some action in the great outdoors?

Volunteers are needed to help with a vast annual eel-counting study in the Hudson River, held by the state Department of Environmental Conservation. Juvenile American eels, just two inches long,  are born in the Atlantic Ocean  and migrate  to the Hudson River every spring to  live in upstate rivers and streams for decades before returning to the sea.

As part of the project, community volunteers  check a 10-foot cone-shaped fyke net  designed to catch this small species and then they count and release the tiny glass eels back into the water and record environmental data on temperature and tides.  The migratory fish will live in freshwater streams and lakes for up to 20 years before returning to the sea. The project is completed in partnership with the New York State Water Resources Institute at Cornell University, the Hudson River Estuary Program and the Hudson River Research Reserve. Last year, more than 500 volunteers monitored 10 sites from to New York City to Greene County, installed eel ladders to help with migration at some stream sites  and counted more than 100,00 juvenile eels which were then released into favorable habitats. Volunteers involved with other aspects of research and restoration  planted trees along streams, measured water quality, and checked for spawning river herring.

Sites for the study include Hannacroix Creek near Route 144, New Baltimore. Outdoor field work is required now through May. Among other sites are Richmond Creek in Staten Island, Bronx River in the Bronx, Saw Mill in Yonkers, Indian Brook at Constitution Marsh in Cold Spring, Crum Elbow Creek in Hyde Park, Saw Kill in Annandale-on-Hudson and Fall Kill in Poughkeepsie.

For information, visit http://www.dec.ny.gov/docs/remediation_hudson_pdf/hreeelvol.pdf.

A short video about the project can be seen at http://www.dec.ny.gov/dectv/dectv76.html.

To volunteer, email or call Zoraida Maloney at ztmalone@gw.dec.state.ny.us, 845‐889‐4745 x107. To volunteer for the Hannacroix site, call (518) 622-9820, ext. 33, or write eml37@cornell.edu.

Informational meetings are Tuesday, March 18, at 6:30 p.m. at the Ravena Public Library, 95 Main St., Ravena, and  Wednesday, March 19, at 7 p.m. at the Catskill Community Center, 344 Main St., Catskill.

Gloria Mazure

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Boomer & Senior Resources is dedicated to empowering area seniors, their caregivers and healthcare professionals to obtain the knowledge and resources needed to provide quality care for an aging relative, friend or patient.

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