Friday, September 20, 2013

Fire Island Dune Grass

Fire Island Dune Grass by Alida's Photos
Fire Island Dune Grass, a photo by Alida's Photos on Flickr.
The best time of year on Fire Island: Too chilly to invite the sun-bathers, but it's a haven for the nature lovers!

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Are the Osprey migrating?

oprey Florida by Alida's Photos
oprey Florida, a photo by Alida's Photos on Flickr.
I haven't seen the local osprey this week. Have they left us for warmer climates?

All summer, I've seen them flying overhead, sometimes with fish in their talons, chirping their squeaky little voices to call their mates or chicks. I haven't seen, or heard them recently and think they have left Long Island for the winter.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Is it true?

montauk lighthouse by Alida's Photos
montauk lighthouse, a photo by Alida's Photos on Flickr.
A friend recentely sent this information along. Are these true facts? Well, I'd have to check each one, but they sound convincing to me! Check them out!

Mastic was the home of William Floyd, one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence.

Long Island's first two settlements were Southold and Southampton, in 1640.

Deep Hollow Ranch in Montauk is the site of the oldest cattle ranch in America, built in 1658, and birthplace of the American cowboy.

The Lighthouse at Montauk became NY's first coastal beacon in 1796.

The first radio transmission, by wireless inventor Guglielmo Marconi, was in 1901 on Fire Island Avenue in Babylon.

In 1927, Charles Lindbergh took off from Roosevelt Field, as he embarked on the first non-stop solo flight across the Atlantic Ocean.

Americas first supermarket, King Kullen, started on Long Island in 1930.

Levittown, the first suburbia in the U.S., was built on Long Island in 1947.

The Lunar Module which landed men on the moon in 1969, was built on Long Island by the Grumman Corp.

Long Island is the largest island among the 48 contiguous states.

The only working water mill and windmill in the US are located in the Long Island community of Water Mill.

Richard Nixon's deceased dog Checkers is buried at Long Island's Bide-a-Wee Pet Cemetery.

When the Brooklyn Bridge was completed in 1883, it became the first land-transport route between Long Island and mainland USA. Before that, the only way to travel between the two was by boat.

Long Island was sculpted by melted glaciers, which is why there is a clear difference between the hilly North Shore and the flat South Shore of Long Island.

Long Island is the most populated island in the United States and the 17th most populated island in the world. Interesting fact: Long Island is more populated than the entire country of Jamaica and of Ireland!

If Long Island was its own state, it would rank 12th in terms of population.

The largest industrial park in the US is located on Long Island - The Hauppauge Industrial Park which houses 1,300 companies and employs more than 55,000 people.

Together Nassau and Suffolk counties' nearly 180 fire agencies possess more fire trucks than New York City and Los Angeles County combined.

Suffolk County is the leading agricultural county in New York State based on the wholesale value of its farm products.

More 7-Eleven coffee is purchased on Long Island than in all of California.

Friday, September 06, 2013

sailing ignatz

sailing ignatz by Alida's Photos
sailing ignatz, a photo by Alida's Photos on Flickr.

September, Fire Island
Some small sailboats on the bay-side shore of Davis Park

Ignatz is the name of a comic book character in Krazy Kats:

Monday, September 02, 2013

My Fox Experience

fox kit by Alida's Photos
fox kit, a photo by Alida's Photos on Flickr.

There's been so much talk about the recent fox sightings that I thought I would share my personal experience. I've lived on Long Island since 1979 and until four years ago, had never seen a fox in the wild. Never! 

In 2009, one early spring day, my husband and I took our boat to Barrett Beach and there, sunning himself/herself in the vegetation was a full grown and very healthy looking fox. I was so excited; I grabbed my camera and took some shots. It wasn't the best time of day, so the next day and a few days after, we went back to take additional photos, with a longer lens and in the early morning light. 

A few weeks later, we went back to the same area and the smell was over-powering. We could see the remains of fish, skates, crabs, gulls and even something that looked like a muskrat. We quietly sat in the sand and waited for the fox to return. Well, to our surprise, out came three little fox kits! Apparently, this was their fox den and the mother had been bringing food to her babies. When the mother returned, she was not happy to see us sitting there, even though we kept a safe distance. They all returned to their "nest" and we did not see them again for the rest of the day!

We often see fox on Fire Island and have since 2009. I often laugh when the caution tapes go up to protect the shore birds. Look behind those tapes and you will see lots of fox prints. I guess foxes don't know the shorebirds are endangered! 

In 2010 I saw a fox for the first time in Bayport. One of our neighbors had some chickens in a chicken coop. The fox returned more than once for those chickens. One day I got a shot of him walking down the street with a chicken in his/her mouth. Needless to say, our neighbor no longer has the chicken coop.

We continue to see a fox in the neighborhood, often just after sunset or very early in the morning. I don't rush to take photos anymore. Sadly, the fox I've seen recently doesn't look as healthy as the fox I saw that first time on Fire Island. Lack of food, living among people, or some fox illness has apparently taken its toll. I'm not a veterinarian but the fox just doesn't look as healthy to me. I hope they do survive here on Long Island. It's nice to see a little wildlife here in our suburban community.