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An important new report about the Monarch butterfly prepared for the U.S. Forest Service by NatureServe and the Xerces Society is now available.
The thing that marks this report from others is that it includes a newly completed assessment that found that monarch butterflies in North America are vulnerable to extinction. The assessment was done using NatureServe's conservation status assessment methodology, which has been successfully applied to hundreds of species of animals.
Using data on population abundance, trends, and threats, it was determined that while the monarch butterfly species as a whole, Danaus plexippus, is apparently secure, the subspecies occurring in North America, Danaus plexippus plexippus, is vulnerable to extinction. Under the assessment, the North American monarchs were split into an eastern population that migrates from as far north as southern Canada to central Mexico each fall, and a smaller western population, that largely migrates to coastal California to spend the winter. The eastern monarch population was assessed as "critically imperiled" due to recent rapid decline and widespread threats. The western population, with a slightly slower rate of decline and less widespread threats, was categorized as "vulnerable to imperiled."
The report, Conservation Status and Ecology of the Monarch Butterfly in the United States, summarizes the monarch's North American distribution, life history, pop¬ulation, current conservation status, and potential causes of decline. In addition, it includes a set of breeding and overwintering habitat management recommendations. This report aims to inform government agencies charged with biodiversity protection, as well as conservation organizations and the public in general, about the threats to and current conservation status of this much-loved, iconic insect.
Download Conservation Status and Ecology of the Monarch Butterfly in the United States at http://www.xerces.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/NatureServe-Xerces_monarchs_USFS-final.pdf.
On September 17, AdkAction.org hosted a one day seminar for North Country assessors on the subject of Lake Front Valuation in the North Country. Over sixty-five assessors attended the 9am to 4pm seminar at the Lake Placid Olympic Center.
This seminar followed the format of the popular 2010 and 2011 AdkAction.org seminars for assessors that focused on Valuation Models, Property Data Collection Conformity, and Equalization rates. AdkAction.org again teamed again with Dave Briggs, IAO, who moderated the day. Dave is the assessor for the Town of Cortlandville in Cortland County and is a past president of the New York State Assessors Association's Executive Board. Dave was joined by Doug Tichenor, sole assessor for the Towns of Franklin and Santa Clara, and Darren Colton, Real Property Services Director for St. Lawrence County.
The focus of the day was on the valuation of lake front residential properties in the North Country. By sharing best practices and reviewing proven methodologies to use in assessing the often unique characteristics of lake front properties, the goal of the session was to enable the assessors to approach lake front valuation in a uniform and consistent fashion across the North Country.
The NYS Office of Real Property Services gave all attendees six hours of continuing education credit, an indication of the value of the conference.
With an overall conference rating of 8.9 out of 10, the attendees thought the conference was well worth the time and effort to attend. One attendee was even heard to say: "Finally, a class content full of meat and potatoes".
On September 10th AdkAction.org hosted an all-day symposium that brought together many Adirondack cultural organizations to discuss and attempt to solve common problems.
Despite low population density, the Adirondack region has hundreds of these cultural institutions – performing art centers, theaters, museums, libraries, fine art cooperatives, etc. – that work very little with one another. We all face the same challenges: attracting visitors and members, securing grants, promoting programs, and funding operations. It has been suggested that greater cooperation between and among our diverse cultural organizations could improve the results both locally and globally.
The symposium let those responsible for local cultural institutions meet with peers in both their and related disciplines to discuss how common problems might be addressed with collective solutions. Examples are:
• Shared services, e.g., grant writing, licensing, purchasing, facilities
• Regional ticketing for multiple venues
• Joint promotion
• Better coordination with local, county and state tourism offices
• Common programming (e.g., for traveling exhibitions and performances)
The symposium was moderated by Jim Herman and Dave Mason as an extension of their Future of the Adirondacks Project, and by Jim McKenna, the director of the Regional Office of Sustainable Tourism. Speakers included Lisa Robb, Executive Director of the NY State Council on the Arts, Rich Newman, Executive Vice President of State Marketing Strategy and Gavin Landry, Executive Director for Tourism, and Bill Farber current Board Chair of Hamilton County and head of the Adirondack Partnership on Trail Towns.
Video of the conference is available here.
This Letter sent to the NYS Public Service Commission by AdkAction.org requests Time Warner share full granular mapping of service in cooperation with the NYS Broadband Program Office Mapping Program
"Art on Heaven Hill", a pop up art show on August 6th and 7th will feature contemporary Canadian landscape painter, Holly Friesen. The show is being held at Heaven Hill, 302 Bear Cub Rd., Lake Placid from 10am to 4pm. Refreshments will be served, and a portion of the sales will be donated to AdkAction.org. Open to all. No admission fee. (painting copyright Holly Friesen)
AdkAction.org featured in the Lake Placid News.
Chip Taylor says a combination of factors have caused the decline of the monarch population.
An ambitious federal plan calls for a billion milkweed plants along a Duluth-to-Texas corridor traveled by butterflies. Read the article by the Star Tribune.
You will enjoy this short, humorous link about the importance of natural landscapes.
Check out the map to see how close the Monarchs have been sighted. They are almost to the Adirondacks!
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