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Welcome to iBrattleboro!

Welcome to iBrattleboro!
It's a local news source by and for the people of Brattleboro, Vermont, published continually. You can get involved in this experiment in citizen journalism by submitting meeting results, news, events, stories, reviews, how-to's, recipes, places to go, things to do, or anything else important to Brattleboro. Or, just drop by to see what others have contributed.

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Ye Olde iBrattleboro Archive

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Search the first decade
of iBrattleboro archives
at Archive-It.org
Feb 20, 2003 to Feb 6, 2013

Nature


For nature stories

Doing Science Simply for the Sake of Learning How Nature Works

I was breakfasting at Flamingo’s on Canal Street recently and noted the flamingo motifs situated in the restaurant. I recall someone at the counter mentioned that flamingoes slept standing up. When I saw this article I was surprised what the flamingoes do to catch a few Zzzzzz’s.“Humans consider standing on one leg something best done in a yoga class. Flamingos, on the other hand, consider it the most comfortable sleeping position.

And they never seem to fall.

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How Did I Miss It?

Yesterday was World Turtle Day!

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Idyllic Spot

This idyllic waterway is located in a most unexpected place.

It is in the US, in fact, in a state that borders Vermont.

Does anybody want to venture a guess as to exactly where?

Hint: The name of the waterway will reveal the location.

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Learning Through Wild Eyes 3 pm Sat 13th May

Please note! Through Wild Eyes begins at 3 pm on Saturday, May 13th. 

Please join us on Saturday, May 13th at 3:00 pm in the Library's Main Reading Room for a presentation of live animals and storytelling, where we will explore the lessons and lore from our neighbors with feather and fur. The Southern Vermont Natural History Museum and Wolfgard Northeast have collaborated to give you a glimpse of the entertaining and educational world where human culture and wildlife intersect. This family-friendly, all ages event is free to attend!

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Learning Through Wild Eyes

How are animals teachers? 

Please join us on Saturday, May 13th at 3:30 pm in the Library's Main Reading Room for a presentation of live animals and storytelling, where we will explore the lessons and lore from our neighbors with feather and fur. The Southern Vermont Natural History Museum and Wolfgard Northeast have collaborated to give you a glimpse of the entertaining and educational world where human culture and wildlife intersect.

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Guided Walk to Vernon's Black Gum Swamps

A trio of experts will lead a guided walk to visit one or more the Black Gum Swamps in Vernon’s J. Maynard Miller Town Forest on Friday, April 28 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.

This is an opportunity for people who may never have visited the Black Gum Swamps to see them, and for anyone interested to gain a better understanding of their ecological uniqueness and their value to the town and the region.

Leading this excursion will be:

  • William C. “Bill” Guenther, Windham County Forester with the Vermont Department of Forests, Parks & Recreation
  • Laura Lapierre, Wetlands Program Director, Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation
  • Bob Zaino, State Lands Ecologist, Barre Office. Vermont Fish & Wildlife Dep’t, Wildlife Division
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Spring Attempts Arrival

Ir appears that Spring is trying to come in for a landing today.

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Blue Jays Hiding Peanuts For Later

I was watching a pair of blue jays go after a small pile of peanuts left for squirrels.

The pair would alternate, each taking a peanut and flying off. At first we presumed they were taking them to a tree to eat, but it became clear that they were working their way through the peanut pile too quickly. They were storing them for later.

This was confirmed when we saw one of the jays take a peanut, fly about 10 feet, and put it down near a neighbors house, and come right back. No eating, just saving for later.

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In Like A Lion Still Works

We may be experiencing unusual temperatures at unusual times of the year, but March's famed "In Like A Lion..." is holding true today, right on schedule. High winds are blowing about everything that is untethered in Brattleboro and southern Vermont.

It's causing some power outages, too. Portions of Guillford, Vernon, and Brattleboro are all in the process of service repairs.

I found our recycling and compost bins across the street this morning, and saw other neighbors chasing down personal property. It was a bit like the line of nanny applicants blowing down the street in Mary Poppins.

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Snow Day 2017

This morning Brattleboro is being treated to a very nice snow storm. It's a heavy, constant snow, covering up all the dirt and grime of the previous storm. For a moment, it looks like a calendar, or snow globe.

We've had four or five inches so far, and more is falling. Is the snow falling to the ground, or the ground rushing up to meet it?

When I first looked out this morning, I saw flakes that were hovering in mid-air over the street, just bouncing along at a height of about 8 feet with no intention of dropping. Others were choosing to drop, but a certain class of flakes would have nothing of it.

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Storm Damage

Last night between 3 and 4:30 AM or so I counted 13 breaking branches or falling trees.  There were other sounds, too, that I couldn't identify but might well have been other trees.  Does anyone have photos of the damage?  I was a bit surprised to wake at 7 and find the grid still up.

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That Which Accounts for the Blueness of the Sky

Has anyone told you, you have beautiful eyes today? No? Why don’t you try on hazel eyes for a day and let me be the first?

The beauty of hazel eyes adds a bit of a mystery on the human eye-color chart. Less than 7% of the world’s population has hazel eyes, which make hazel eyes rather rare.

The science of the observable characteristics of hazel eyes is, like all eye colors, determined by genetic traits “influenced by up to sixteen known genes, passed to you that you inherit.” Science no longer thinks that your hazel eyes “(or any other eye color) happened because of a dominant gene.”

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Drive, Walk, and Ride Safely

Brattleboro is getting a first dose of real winter weather, and conditions for walking, biking, and driving are poor. Take your time, go a bit slower, and get to your destination safely.

Just this morning I was walking near Western Ave and Cedar and BANG - two cars collided. (Another guy and I were close enough to check on everyone. We also directed traffic for a moment until the police arrived.) Both drivers were safe, but they are both looking at lots of car repair.

If you don't need to go out, by all means stay in. And watch the forecasts. More snow and rain is expected this week, along with cold temperatures.

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The Casual Observer - November's Beaver Moon

Earth’s moon is the largest planetary satellite relative to the size of its planet. Throughout its orbit it always shows the same face and this weekend it will shine down on us in one of its rare closest approach. The forecast indicates that this Saturday and Sunday will be sunny and clear, so hopefully viewing the Moon will be unimpeded at night.

The face of the Moon is arguably the most visual motif for countless subjects represented in the arts, literature and culture throughout all civilizations. According to the Old Farmer’s Almanac, the Algonquin tribes and American colonists called the November full moon the Beaver Moon because it was the time to “set beaver traps before the swamps froze, to ensure a supply of warm winter furs."

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Menopause - The Climacteric Cause of Female Life Extension and the Freedom of Newfound Sexuality

My sister-in-law told me that when she was menstrual and having babies she had little to no interest in sex. It was more obligatory to please my brother than necessary for her.Yet, after her divorce, and when she reached menopause, she said that she was really horny all the time, but because she was older and in her opinion, less attractive and post mid-forty, her opportunities to meet men to satisfy the newly acquired sexual urges were diminished. She complained that the sexual frustration was difficult to bear. I found her candor fascinating and I immediately understood that she was not alone.

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Golden Eagle Spotted Over Brattleboro

12:30p.m. immature Golden Eagle spotted making wide unflapping circles from Conn. River to over Elliot Street. New yard bird! 

robyn

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Maybe Coy, Maybe Not

I've been living here for several decades and it was my first close encounter of this kind. But what was it? I was riding my bicycle in West Brattleboro, past the cemetary where headstones are splayed on both sides of a dirt road. An animal darted in front of me, something dead, just killed, in its jaw. The prey, a hedgehog, I guess. The predator, what was it? At first I thought it was a German Shepard. A big one. It had a reddish coloring. Then almost immediately I second guessed that. There was no collar, there was something feral.

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SeVWA's 2016 E. coli Monitoring of Local River Sites Concluded August 31st

The Southeastern Vermont Watershed Alliance (SeVWA) had the final day of our monitoring program for the summer of 2016 on Wednesday, August 31st. Volunteers collected samples from 30 sites on eight rivers and streams throughout the summer. This year, we had sites on the West River, Rock River, North Branch Ball Mountain Brook, Williams River (including South Branch and Middle Branch), Saxtons River, Sacketts Brook, and Whetstone Brook.

The huge sampling effort that SeVWA undertakes this year and every year would simply not be possible without all of our wonderful volunteers. They wake up early every other Wednesday morning to take time out of their busy lives to collect samples rain or shine. Many of our sites can be difficult to access but the results provide our community with valuable information about the state of our rivers. Volunteers also get to know their particular portion of the river and help us identify possible pollution sources and alert us to any changes that might indicate a change in water quality. Thank you volunteers, for all that you do. SeVWA really appreciates it!

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SeVWA's 2016 E. coli Monitoring of Local River Sites Continued August 17th

The Southeastern Vermont Watershed Alliance (SeVWA) had the penultimate day of our monitoring program for the summer of 2016 on Wednesday, August 17th. Volunteers collected samples from 30 sites on eight rivers and streams and will conclude monitoring on August 31st. This year, we have sites on the West River, Rock River, North Branch Ball Mountain Brook, Williams River (including South Branch and Middle Branch), Saxtons River, Sacketts Brook, and Whetstone Brook.

The drought continues in our area with our entire sampling area remaining under moderate drought conditions and parts of eastern New Hampshire and Massachusetts being upgraded to extreme drought conditions. It’s hard to imagine the contrast in weather to our south in Louisiana where historic floods are devastating the southeastern part of the state. They received over two feet of rain with the most recent storm; it is the second rain event this year that received over 20 inches of rain. Many rivers have shattered previous flood stage records by 4-6 feet. If you are interested in donating to help flood victims in Louisiana, you can visit the United Way of Southeast Louisiana (http://www.unitedwaysela.org/flood). Unfortunately, as our climate continues to change, we can expect more extreme weather events throughout the world like the drought in New England and the flooding on the Gulf Coast.

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SeVWA's 2016 E. coli Monitoring of Local River Sites Continued August 3rd

The Southeastern Vermont Watershed Alliance (SeVWA) had the fourth day of our monitoring program for the summer of 2016 on Wednesday, August 3rd. Volunteers collected samples from 30 sites on eight rivers and streams and will continue to do so every other week through the end of August. This year, we have sites on the West River, Rock River, North Branch Ball Mountain Brook, Williams River (including South Branch and Middle Branch), Saxtons River, Sacketts Brook, and Whetstone Brook.

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