The Wrack

The Wrack is the Wells Reserve blog, our collective logbook on the web.

Posts tagged monitoring

  • There's No Such Thing as a Free Sample

    | January 27, 2018 | Filed under: Opinion

    If I just tallied the birds at the feeder outside my kitchen window, I might come to believe that the only bird in Maine is a rather fat and feisty cardinal. But that's not science.

  • Timing Is Everything

    | August 6, 2016

    A tasty tree-t

    The following was published in the Biddeford-Saco Journal Tribune Sunday edition, 8/7/2016, and Making It At Home's 8/11/2016 issue.

    The orange ruffles hadn’t been there last week, but now they were impossible to miss. Overnight, it seemed, a chicken-of-the-woods had returned to roost on the old oak stump in our yard.

  • Spring Fever

    | March 20, 2016

    Spring is dawning

    The following was published in the Biddeford-Saco Journal Tribune Sunday edition, 3/20/2016, and Making It At Home's 3/23/2016 issue.

    My wife and I and our two boys moved up to Maine full-time in July 2012. We felt like we’d arrived in the Garden of Eden. Lobsters were four bucks, the ocean was 73 degrees, and the outdoor season stretched well into November. It wasn’t the Maine I knew from my childhood (swimmable water!?), but who cared? It was awesome.

  • What Do We Talk About When We Talk About the Weather?

    | January 23, 2016

    Snow blowing past the big barn's double doors, February 5, 2015

    The following was published in the Biddeford-Saco Journal Tribune Sunday edition of 1/24/16 and Making It At Home Thursday edition, 1/28/2016.

    Always eager to start some new long-term monitoring project, I’m now keeping track of the number of conversations I have about the weather. I’m planning to henceforth keep tabs on with whom, when, and for how long we chatted. I’m already certain one thing will be constant: the changing weather will be discussed in only the most general, equivocal, unchanging terms. You and I will talk about the weather, my friends, but we will say nothing new.

  • Piqued

    | October 18, 2015

    burning beech

    The following was published in the Biddeford-Saco Journal Tribune Sunday edition, 10/18/2015.

    Welcome to Southern Maine and “peak foliage.” Those blazing reds and oranges along the Turnpike and our back roads are a sight to behold. Of course, I’m talking about brake lights.

  • On the Road

    | October 3, 2015

    oh, the shame

    The following was published in the Biddeford-Saco Journal Tribune Sunday edition, 10/4/2015.

    Just about every two weeks, for the past three years, I’ve gassed up my car. On the printed receipt from the pump, I write down the mileage from the trip odometer before I reset it. Every few months, I take all the receipts out of the Altoids tin I keep them in and enter them into a spreadsheet – gallons, price per gallon, location of fill-up, miles driven – and use it to calculate my average miles per gallon, and where the reliably cheapest gas is. Embarrassingly, I’ve even graphed the ebbs and flows of my refueling fun.

    What can I say? I like math; I like numbers.

  • Water Quality Monitoring in the Mousam and Kennebunk Rivers

    | November 7, 2014 | Filed under: Observations

    Volunteers measure river conditions at 20 monitoring sites as part of a statewide program.

  • Glacial Time

    | January 5, 2014

    Compare these two snapshots from the South Cascade glacier official USGS long-term monitoring site in Washington state:

    The following was published in the Biddeford-Saco Journal Tribune Sunday edition, 1/5/2014.

    Quite possibly the best movie l saw in 2013 didn’t open in 3,000 theaters, didn’t have a Morgan Freeman voiceover, didn’t follow a hobbit and his ring.

  • Casco Bay Island Invasion!

    | October 29, 2013

    For the last 6 years, myself and a group of trained citizen scientist have been monitoring marine invasive species on docks, rocky shores, and tide pools as part of the Marine Invader Monitoring and Information Collaborative, or MIMIC.

  • Sandy by the numbers

    | October 31, 2012

    Hi Everyone,

    Thought I would share some numbers from our System Wide Monitoring Program (SWMP) weather station here at the Reserve, and compare them to some values from around the area. First off, it seems we got "lucky" with rain fall totals. Both the Reserve station and the Portland International Jetport weather station reported just over an inch of rain on Tuesday. However rainfall totals varied a bit depending on where those "bands" of precipitation hit… pretty minor event as far as actual rainfall goes, but when that rain is being blown sideways at close to 60mph. Speaking of wind…