ECO-BULLETIN Vol 14, No 6 – June 1, 2020

June 1, 2020:  Vol. 14, No. 6

Water Chestnut Pull on Goodyear Lake: Facebook Live

Sunday, June 7, around 10:30am. Join the OCCA team for a short trip on the Goodyear Lake “Stump Lot” in search of the invasive plant, water chestnut. In this short, live video we’ll show you what water chestnut looks like, where you might expect to find it, and how to safely remove it from the water. 

Spotlight on Invasives: Aquatics Invasives to Watch For 

Wednesday, June 10, 12-1pm 

With summer approaching and more people getting outside, we must remember to protect our waterbodies by watching out for invasive species and taking care to prevent their spread. Invasive Species Intern, Sierra Stickney will focus on a few aquatic invasive species (AIS) such as water chestnut, European frog-bit, and starry stonewort. Learn what to look for when you’re out on the water and how you can help the spread of AIS. Register for this free Zoom program here.  You will receive a confirmation email with the details of how to join the call. 

Volunteers Needed! 

European frog-bit is a highly invasive aquatic plant that can disrupt our local ecosystems. Last year, a small population was discovered on Clarke Pond in Springfield. We’re seeking some hardy volunteers who don’t mind getting wet, muddy, and possibly a few leech bites to search for and remove this plant before it can spread to Otsego Lake or other water bodies. Training provided. Contact Jeff O’Handley at programdirector@occainfo.org for details or to volunteer. 

Butternut Creek Paddle Postponed 

Due to the ongoing pandemic, our canoe paddle on the Butternut Creek with Butternut Valley Alliance is postponed. We have tentatively rescheduled the paddle for September 27—we may have some good fall color to look forward to! Watch our website and future editions of the EcoBulletin for details on how to participate. 

Aquatic Invasive Species Demonstration Cancelled 

This program, offered in partnership with Otsego Land Trust, CRISP Watershed Stewards Program, Otsego Lake Association and the Otsego Sailing Club has been cancelled. We’re hoping that it will be able to take place next year. 

Good News: Otsego ReUse Center Open 

The Otsego ReUse Center has reopened! Located at 23 Duane Street, Oneonta, the ReUse Center provides individuals served by The Arc Otsego with important vocational skills and offers customers donated building materials (and much more) at low costs, and has saved thousands of good quality items from the landfill. Also, the ReUse Center is once again accepting clean, white polystyrene foam for Styrofoam for recycling. You may bring clean, white rigid Styrofoam (coolers, rigid packing material), white foam cups and takeout food containers (please make sure they are clean and dry), and foam egg cartons. The ReUse Center is open seven days a week, 9am-5pm. For details on how to donate items or about polystyrene recycling, call (607) 353-7831. 

OCCA Online Garage Sale Ongoing 

If you’re in the midst of spring cleaning and you find yourself with good condition items that you no longer need, why not get them into the hands of someone who could use them? Donate them to the OCCA online garage sale and help support our efforts to protect Otsego County’s environment! Items should have a minimum value of $10. Please send photos and a description and dimension of the item(s) to occagaragesale@gmail.com. If you’re looking to buy, visit http://occainfo.org/2018-garage-sale-items/ to see what we currently have! 

We want to hear from you!

We will be hosting a OCCA family Coffee Talk, Wednesday, June 10th at 9:30 am for folks to join us for a discussion what we are doing, what types of programming you would like to see in the future and how we can help you! Register Here for the link to join in!

COVID19 Policy 

The staff and board of directors of Otsego County Conservation Association offer our heartfelt condolences to the members of our Otsego County family who have lost loved ones to or suffered from COVID-19. Though our region has been fortunate to see a small number of cases relative to other parts of the world, we take this disease seriously. The safety and health of our staff and all of our program participants is our top priority. Therefore, as we move forward with in-person programs in the coming weeks, we will adhere to current guidelines put forth by New York State. As of this publication, these are: 

  • Program size will be limited to 10 people, staff included; 
  • All participants must wear a mask during the program; 
  • Participants must follow social distancing guidelines at all times; should a program be expected to require close contact among participants, this will be made clear in the program description 
  • Participants must pre-register in order to attend; 
  • All participants must provide OCCA with contact information (name, phone number, email) in order to participate.  
  • For programs that take place on the water, you must bring your own watercraft (canoe, kayak, paddleboard) and personal flotation device. OCCA will not be providing canoes at this time. 

We apologize for any inconvenience these rules may cause; please understand this is in the interests of protecting all of us. Please note these guidelines will change as the situation here changes. We will post these guidelines at occainfo.org and update them regularly. Thank you for respecting each other, and for being part of the OCCA family.  

In Case You Missed It !!

While we haven’t been able to meet or provide programs the way we prefer to, face-to-face, OCCA has been busy! For web-based programs on Invasive Species, Heat Smart Otsego, and the SEQR process, visit our YouTube page. We’ll be adding more content, as well. Subscribe to get notifications of new postings. 

Recycle Right! 

With more people at home due to the pandemic, more residential waste is being generated, putting strain on some waste and recycling collection programs. Please consider holding off on any large spring cleaning projects, or focus on small home organizing projects with cleanouts in stages. And when visiting the transfer stations, please protect transfer station employees, your fellow recyclers and yourself by wearing a mask and following social distancing guidelines.  

Did You Know? 

June 7-13 is New York State’s 7th Annual Invasive Species Awareness Week (ISAW). The purpose of ISAW is to promote knowledge and awareness of invasive species and the harm they can cause by engaging in a wide range of activities across the state. OCCA will be going live on Facebook on Sunday, June 7 at 1pm, will host a live meeting on Aquatic Invasives to Watch for on June 10 and will be posting a variety of information on our Facebook page throughout the week. Also be sure to visit New York Invasive Species Awareness Week’s website (https://nyisaw.org/) for other programs.

How You Can Help Protect Our Local Environment

Donations provide the foundation for our work throughout Otsego County. By becoming a supporter of OCCA, you become a part of a unique countywide environmental organization whose mission is to protect local natural resources for the benefit of all. 

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7207 State Highway 80, PO Box 931 • Cooperstown, NY  13326
(607) 547-4488