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News stories tagged with "lake-ontario"

Water Levels Study: The Envelope, Please

A 5-year, $20 million study of water levels on Lake Ontario and the St. Lawrence River was finished last week. It's a collaboration between the U.S. and Canada. It's the first time the system has been reviewed since the 1960s. The study recommends three options for holding and releasing water downriver. David Sommerstein explains.  Go to full article

Virus Threatens River Muskies

Biologists are concerned a new fish virus may become an ongoing threat in the St. Lawrence River. DEC officials have confirmed Viral Hemorrhagic Septicemia, or VHS, killed hundreds of round gobies, an invasive species, last month near Cape Vincent. The virus also killed 18 muskies, a prized native fish in the St. Lawrence. The DEC says it hasn't affected river trout or salmon populations so far. David Sommerstein spoke with John Farrell. Farrell directs SUNY ESF's Thousand Islands Biological Station near Clayton. He says the virus is common in Europe and Japan, and in saltwater in the Pacific Northwest. It first showed up in the Great Lakes watershed last year, in the Bay of Quinte in Lake Ontario.  Go to full article
Prairie Smoke in bloom on the Chaumont Barrens
Prairie Smoke in bloom on the Chaumont Barrens

Chaumont Barrens: The North Country's Prairie

If you're looking for a unique hike in the North Country, try this. Tucked in the northwest corner of Jefferson County, just inland from Lake Ontario, there's an area that's more North Dakota prairie than northern New York forest. It's called the Chaumont Barrens. It's owned by the Nature Conservancy. It's the only "alvar" landscape in New York State. And best of all, its wildflowers are in full bloom right now. David Sommerstein took a nature walk and sent this audio postcard.  Go to full article

Round Goby Die-Off May Be Viral

Environmental officials say a disease might be killing an invasive species of fish in eastern Lake Ontario and the St. Lawrence River. Tests have ruled out botulism. Scientists say the disease may be a virus. David Sommerstein reports.  Go to full article

Botulism Killing Birds on St. Lawrence, Lake Ontario

State environment officials are investigating the deaths of sea birds in the Thousand Islands area of the St. Lawrence River and along the shore of Lake Ontario. The DEC says bird carcasses tested earlier this month showed contamination with type E botulism. As Brian Mann reports, the disease can harm humans who eat birds of fish poisoned with the toxin.  Go to full article

What Is Liquid Manure?

Following the 3 million-gallon liquid manure spill in the Black River last week, we wanted to know why farmers use liquid manure in the first place. So David Sommerstein called Brent Buchanan of the Cornell Cooperatve Extension of St. Lawrence County. He says in the old days on dairy farms, each milking cow had its own stall with its own bedding.  Go to full article

Black River Cleanup Continues

A massive spill of liquid manure in the Black River flowed slower than expected this weekend. Three million gallons of cow waste entered the river last week when a wall in a holding lagoon burst on Marks dairy farms south of Lowville. Hundreds of thousands of fish were killed. The Hudson River/Black River Regulating District released extra water from Stillwater Reservoir on Friday to help move the manure into Lake Ontario. According to News 10 Now, kayaking, rafting, and fishing outfitters along the river had to cancel hundreds of reservations. Steve Litwiler is a spokesperson for the Department of Environmental Conservation, which is handling the spill. He spoke with Todd Moe.  Go to full article

River Groups Hope Water Level Plan Isn't Status Quo

A binational agency is holding its final public meetings this week over new plans to control water levels on Lake Ontario and St. Lawrence River. It's the first time the system is under review since the St. Lawrence was dammed in the 1950s. River residents are getting worried the 5-year, $25 million project may amount to nothing new. David Sommerstein explains why.  Go to full article

Task Force Proposes Wide-Ranging Great Lakes Cleanup Plan

A task force released a draft plan in Michigan Thursday of a long-term strategy to restore the health of the ailing Great Lakes. The plan makes dozens of recommendations in a bid to solve some of the most pressing problems, such as the invasion of exotic species, habitat degradation and toxic pollution.  Go to full article
Depiction of the Stone Hospital in Sackets Harbor after restoration.
Depiction of the Stone Hospital in Sackets Harbor after restoration.

Restoring the Past: Saving Sackets Harbor's Historic House of Healing

During the War of 1812, Sackets Harbor along Lake Ontario in Jefferson County, became the headquarters of the U-S Army and Navy for the northern frontier. Thousands of troops and hundreds of ships carpenters lived in the village. It was a major military outpost and shipbuilding center and the site of several strategic battles. After the war, Sackets Harbor developed throughout the 19th century into a commercial lake port, military town and summer resort. Today it's known for its museums, quaint shops, food and historical restoration. A group of history buffs wants to restore the old Stone Hospital at Madison Barracks as a military heritage center and cornerstone for future restoration work. Todd Moe has more.  Go to full article

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