Wednesday, April 23, 2008

What a Weekend: Over 300 Eggs Oiled!

Photos courtesy of Gregory Ulscht

GeesePeacers were out in force last weekend, oiling eggs all over Bergen County from Saddle Brook to Woodcliff Lake. My unofficial tally, based on reports from the field, is 343 eggs oiled between Friday, April 18 and Tuesday, April 22!

Over the Weekend in Ridgewood

In Ridgewood alone, volunteers oiled 46 eggs in 11 nests, including the nest on the roof of Somerville School. By my count, volunteers have oiled 73 eggs in 13 nests to date within Ridgewood's borders. See map
here. (Note: Some of the nests indicated on this map are in Paramus and other neighboring towns; these are
not included in the Ridgewood tally.)

Sunday Morning in Saddle Brook

On Sunday, April 20, Diana Perog and I teamed with Greg Ulscht and Naomi Gamorra, two volunteers from Waldwick and Glen Rock, to oil eggs at the Saddle Brook County Park/Pehle Area in Saddle Brook. See map here. Greg, who is an outdoor photography hobbyist, took the photos shown in this post. (See his Website here and link directly to his GeesePeace gallery here.) And Naomi is largely responsible for where we are today; she wrote the published essay about GeesePeace that caught Diana Wing's attention, resulting in Diana taking point in bringing GeesePeace to Ridgewood and throughout the region.

We met at 6:30 a.m. in the Pehle Area parking lot. Greg had already scoped out 8 nest locations along the east bank of the pond, and several nest locations on both sides of the Saddle River. Some of the nests along the pond were difficult to access, as they were well protected by vines and brush. But we got to them all, and for the most part the geese were easily coaxed off their nests.

The fun began when we reached the nests located on the river, three of which were built on islands. None of us had waders or even waterproof boots, and Greg and I were pretty much resigned to passing on the island nests. Diana and Naomi, on the other hand, were undeterred. Without the slightest hesitation, the two oilers walked right out into the water, shoes and all. Since Greg and I were the umbrellamen, we had no choice but to follow their lead. So we sort of looked at each other and agreed, "Looks like we're getting wet."

At the end of the morning, we tallied everything up: 56 eggs in 15 nests!

Tuesday Morning in Woodcliff Lake: Jane and Ray Hit the Jackpot!

Tuesday morning, I found this email message from Ray Cywinski in my inbox:
Jane Morales and I went out to the island in the Woodcliff Lake Reservoir (United Water New Jersey property) this morning. Here is a summary of our activities:
  • No. of Nests Treated: 49
  • No. of Eggs Oiled: 167
    Ray also noted that 20 eggs floated, and so were left untreated, and that they saw two geese protecting 7-10 goslings. But 167 eggs oiled in a single outing? WOW!

    I don't know the exact formula, but this is a fact: thanks to our efforts over this weekend alone, there will be a few thousand fewer geese in our area in eight years than there would have been absent the GeesePeace program. Congratulations and thank you all on a great job!

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