News, notes and observations from the Bay Journal staff.
Efforts that will build habitats in schoolyards, restore mountainous brook trout streams and help clean up one of the region’s most polluted urban rivers were among 39 projects funded Thursday under grant programs aimed at improving local waterways and, ultimately, the Bay.
Altogether, nearly $10.9 million from the Chesapeake Bay Stewardship Fund will go to nonprofits, local governments, universities and state agencies for activities as varied as promoting living shorelines on Virginia’s Northern Neck, fostering “watershed covenant communities” in churches and introducing phosphorus balances on farmlands.
Federal regulators unveiled this week a new, “more streamlined” process by which Maryland oyster farmers can lease places in the Chesapeake Bay for raising their shellfish.
The revised permitting procedures announced by the Baltimore District of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers come in response to long-voiced complaints from oyster farmers – backed up by Maryland’s U.S. senators – about delays and red tape in obtaining aquaculture leases.
Oxygen conditions in the Chesapeake, which started the summer better than average only to spike to among the worst “dead zones” on record for late July, settled into the normal range for early August, according to an update released by the Maryland Department of Natural Resources.
Tips from veteran Chesapeake Bay photographer Dave Harp about how to capture the perfect images from your outdoor travels.
I always try to get out and make some photos on the solstices and equinoxes, and an assignment to illustrate a story about Trap Pond allowed me to chase the morning light there a few hours after this year’s Autumnal equinox. It’s an amazingly beautiful patch of wild Delaware near Laurel and will be featured in the November issue of the Bay Journal. The pond, created in the 18th century to power a saw mill to convert the trees into board feet of lumber, is the epicenter of the northern most stand of bald cypress trees in the United States. The relatively young trees in the middle of the pond were planted in the 1930’s when the water level was drawn down to allow the trees to grow. Once they’re heads are above the water they seem to do fine in an aquatic environment. Be sure to look for a more complete story about Trap Pond State Park by Tom Horton in the November issue of the Bay Journal.
Bundle up and take advantage of the opportunities for great photos provided the the crisp air, and low angle of sunlight, during winter months.
While cameras have changed much over the past century, one ingredient of good photos has remained largely the same — the tripod.