During the summer months, the Cary Institute’s campus bustles with educational activity. From campers getting their first introduction to climate change while exploring our property, to undergraduates conducting research projects under the mentorship of Cary Institute scientists—our staff is committed to nurturing ecological understanding in learners of all ages.
Imagine hiking through a forest on the Cary Institute's 2,000-acre property and wondering why the hemlock trees grow just in certain areas or whether the annual influx of tent caterpillars causes long-lasting damage.
If you were to pick up the Appalachian Trail in New York State, and hike 600 miles south, after passing through some of the nation's most scenic vistas, you'd reach some very disturbing topography. Treeless hills rising to a flat top—much like the arid mesas of the desert Southwest—are separated by valleys filled with broken rock and barren streams. Welcome to mountaintop removal coal mining.
For more than 100 years, New York has been home to one of the world's best-kept conservation secrets. At 6 million acres, the Adirondack Park is the largest protected area in the contiguous United States.
June was rainy! According to the Cary Institute's Environmental Monitoring Program, it rained 19 out of 30 days. The first few days of July have also been marked by intermittent rains and flash flooding.
As we commemorate the 400th anniversary of Henry Hudson's historic voyage up the Hudson River, it is prudent to learn what we can from the past in order to maintain and improve this irreplaceable natural resource for future generations.
Drive by a local wetland on an early spring evening, and if you're lucky you'll hear a harbinger of the changing season - the clear chirping chorus of tiny frogs known as spring peepers, classified by biologists as Pseudacris crucifer.
In early spring, shortly after the snow melts, vernal pools dot the landscape. Isolated from larger water bodies, these small wetlands are usually only wet for a few months out of the year. If you are not paying attention, you just might miss them. And that would be a shame, because these oft-overlooked wetlands are valuable and interesting ecosystems.
Cary Institute ecologist Dr. Shannon L. LaDeau is working to understand how environmental conditions influence the spread of undesirable pests and pathogens such as West Nile virus and the hemlock wooly adelgid. This work includes understanding the dynamics of pest communities and taking into account things like land use, climate change, and combined stressors.
Few themes in literature are more alluring than the lost world. Places such as Atlantis, Shangri-La, Conan Doyle's "Lost World", and now the bestselling "The Lost City of Z" conjure up images of strange landscapes, exotic civilizations and hidden treasures.
Ecologists study phenology, which is the orderly progression of seasonal events in nature, such as the springtime arrival of migrating birds, the first chorus of spring peepers in vernal pools, and the development of tree colors each autumn