Announcing a Weekly Birdy 30

IMG_9781Stiles Thomas, his family, and Patty and I hope to have a weekly Birdy 30 every Saturday this winter, and all are welcome to participate any week you like.

For those unfamiliar with the free contest, here’s what you do: Just look out your home or office window for 30 minutes straight before noon on Saturday, count the number of bird species you see, and then send your best 30-minute bird list to me by 9 a.m. the next morning.

The Birdy 30 is on the honor system, so please don’t get creative with your sightings. And if you see something unusual, please take a photo. I’d love to share them.

With the Birdy 30, you can pick a convenient time and window, have a cup of coffee, and chill.

Need to make a phone call or text somebody? No worries. Rainy or snowing? Try later. Skunked? Make sure your feeders are full and try again.

Rule No.1: Have fun.

First Prize: Bragging rights!



Monday Morning Mystery 111119

IMG_4196This milk bottle, donated to the Fell House by Stiles and Lillian Thomas, is from Allendale in the good old days. 

The dairy is Woodland Dairy. The bottle is a quart, In the middle is a big "R."

What does the "R" stand for?  (I do.)

Anybody know anything about the dairy, such as where it was located?

Fell House Flags Fly for Veterans Day

IMG_5002More American flags than ever are flying at the historic John Fell House this Veterans Day weekend.

(A big thank you to Joanne Hart for all the work she has put into this project!)

The Fell House is located at 475 Franklin Turnpike, Allendale.

If you would like to have a flag named for a loved one, you can learn more here.

Monday Mystery Continues...

IMG_9755On Monday, I wrote:

Last week, Tom Mitchell asked folks on the Fyke email list what kind of duck he photographed recently at the Celery Farm. He said that the incomparable Fred Weber pronounced it a hybrid.

What do you think? If it's a hybrid, of what?

Sally T. suggested a female Redhead -- the head looks similar but I'm not sure about the rest of the plumage.

I think it might be a N. Shoveler/N. Pintail hybrid, but I'm just guessing. :- )



Allendale History Talk @ Fell House

In celebration of Allendale's 125th anniversary, the Allendale Historical Society will present its "Allendale, Now and Then" slideshow at the historic John Fell House on Friday, Nov. 8, at 7 p.m.

The talk,  originally created by Pat Wardell, will be presented by Allendale Historian Joanne Hart.

Historical displays will be featured around the house.
This event is free and open to the public (but donations to the Fell House, a 501C3 non-profit, are appreciated).
More information about the Allendale Historical Society is here
Copies of "Allendale,  the Background of a Borough, " the detailed history of Allendale written for Allendale's Centennial celebration in 1994 by Pat Wardell, will be available for purchase.
The Fell House is located at 475 Franklin Turnpike. The Celery Farm was once part of John Fell's estate.

Rare Pix of Bluebird Man in Action

Img152 (1)Stiles Thomas, who was the driving force behind creating the Celery Farm Natural Area and who founded the Mount Peter and Hook Mountain hawk watches, also was the Eastern Bluebird equivalent of Johnny Appleseed in North Jersey back in the 1950s.

He even supplied farmers with free bluebird boxes. The boxes were stamped:

Bluebird House

Stiles Thomas

Allendale, N.J.

... so, perhaps, that bluebirds knew they were moving into the correct birdhouse, and whom to thank.

Also pictured below is Mr. Thomas with a few of his incredible bird carvings. If anyone knows when and where the photo was taken, let me know.

Stiles was kind enough to share these old photos with me (and now you).

A High Mountain Hike

IMG_4943Fellow Celery Farm volunteer Bruce Davis hiked a bit of High Mountain on Monday, enjoying the last gasps of fall foliage on a beautiful autumn day.

A surprising amount of water, too.

We parked in the Red Trail Parking Lot and hiked the Red Trail to the White Trail -- a new way for us.

We did not see or hear any Wild Turduckens, but they are typically found closer to the summit.

You can read more about High Mountain here.

You can read an article about High Mountain that I wrote for Autumn Years here.