ECO-BULLETIN Vol. 16, No. 19 – December 1, 2022

Winter is coming in Otsego County. Many of us have already seen our first snow! We still have lots of opportunities coming to help you get outside and learn more about the the world around us. 

Homeschool Nature Group
December 9th, 12-2 pm, Neahwa Park, Oneonta
Sometimes it can be challenging to explore nature during the winter months or to fit a hike between so many other activities.  Local parks are a fantastic resource for nature exploration throughout the year.  Join OCCA educator Shelby MacLeish at Neahwa Park on Friday, December 9, from 12 pm- 2 pm, where we will explore nature in a city park. On the 9th, we will explore our surroundings, play nature games and work to identify the animals and plants we find.  
 
The program is free and open to everyone! For more information or to sign up for the program, contact Education Specialist Shelby MacLeish at education@occainfo.org. Neahwa Park is located at 15 James Georgeson Ave, Oneonta.  Park adjacent to the playground area, and we will meet under the large pavilion. 

Otsego Hemlock Hunters Volunteer Training
December 10, 9am-12pm, Clark Sports Center
Hemlock woolly adelgid (HWA) is moving into our area! HWA is an invasive insect that feeds on eastern hemlock trees, a tree that is ecologically significant, economically important, and beautiful to look at. OCCA and Mohican Farm/The Clark Foundation are teaming up to train volunteers to search for and document HWA infestations in the region. During this training you will learn about the importance of hemlock trees; understand the impact and life cycle of hemlock woolly adelgid; and learn how to survey for HWA and report your findings. This training will be indoors and outdoors and we will be putting together teams to conduct surveys beginning in January, 2023. Training is free, but pre-registration is required.

Naked Eye Astronomy
December 17, 7-8:30 pm, Mohican Farm workshop
Join OCCA treasurer Jim Hill for a night of Naked Eye Astronomy on Saturday, December 17, from 7:00-8:30 pm at Mohican Farm in Springfield.  Hill will lead participants in an introduction to the night sky, where Mars and Jupiter will be visible along with Orion in the east and some of the gorgeous 1st magnitude winter sky stars, along with many more surprises.   
 
The group will meet at the workshop at 7:00 pm for a brief introduction before going outside.  Participants are encouraged to bring a camp chair to sit on and to dress warmly.  In the event of rain, snow, or cloudy weather, we will reschedule for January 21, 2023.  
 
This event is free, but pre-registration is required.  If you have any questions, please get in touch with Education Specialist Shelby MacLeish at education@occainfo.org
Event Registration

OCCA and the Clark Foundation/Mohican Farm are conducting surveys between now and mid-April to determine the extent of hemlock woolly adelgid (HWA) spread in Otsego County. If you have property with stands of eastern hemlock on it and would like your trees surveyed, contact Jeff O’Handley at programdirecor@occainfo.org or by phone (607) 282-4087. This would involve having a small team of volunteers on your property to examine the trees. We will notify you of our findings. 

OCCA’s 2022 Annual Reports are officially in the mail. If you’ve given to us at all in the past 5 years you should receive a physical copy sometime in the next couple of weeks. If you’re curious about what’s inside the report, you can access the digital copy on our website right now! The report is available here. Thank you to everyone who made 2022 such a great year for OCCA!

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© 2022  Otsego County Conservation Association
7207 State Highway 80, PO Box 931 • Cooperstown, NY  13326
(607) 547-4488