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April 2022

2023 Celery Farm Calendar Photos Wanted!

Img20210824_11255605Fyke's Carol Flanagan writes:

Photos taken at the Celery Farm by Fyke members are being accepted now for the 2023 Celery Farm calendar.
There is a limit of 10 photos per person. The photos should be landscape format.  Non-cropped photos work best with the software used for the calendar. 
Please send your photos as a .jpeg email attachment. 
Send your photos to [email protected] by July 11, 2022. 
Thank you in advance for your support of Fyke Nature Association!


A Great Talk on Celery Farm Plants

Learn all about Trout Lilies, Swamp Cabbage, White Snakeroot and all sorts of trees that live in the Celery Farm's Klomburg Woods in this terrific talk by naturalist Mike Lefebvre.

Mike gave the talk to the Fyke Nature Association last Friday, sponsored by a grant from the Winifred M. & George P. Pitkin Foundation.

Avian Flu Update

I am getting emails from birders seeking advice on whether they should take down their feeders in light of the latest outbreak of avian flu.

Here's what the Cornell Lab of Ornithology advises:

In a nutshell:

"There is currently very low risk of an outbreak among wild songbirds, and no official recommendation to take down feeders unless you also keep domestic poultry, according to the National Wildlife Disease Program. We do always recommend that you clean bird feeders and birdbaths regularly as a way to keep many kinds of diseases at bay. We will update this page as the situation develops."

(Thanks, Cornell!)



Bringing a Still Life to Life

PMA Still Life
For Earth Day, the Philadelphia Museum of Art posted my article about one of their famous still lifes.

The description next to the painting dwells mostly on the flowers, but the still life also features all kinds of really cool insects and shells.

With the help of some scientists at the Academy of Natural Sciences a few blocks down the parkway, I tried to add some new insights into the painting.

You can read the article on the PMA's blog here:

To learn more about the symbolism behind insects, flowers and various objects in still lifes, the PMA's Jennifer Thompson suggests this webpage:

As a small footnote, my father was an illustrator who went to the commercial-arts college affiliated with the PMA back in the day. I'd like to think he would have enjoyed what I wrote for his alma mater.