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Pelham Bay Park

The Daily Plant : Tuesday, August 8, 2000

HOLY MACKEREL! PARKS RESCUES THOUSANDS OF CENTRAL PARK FISH


Photograph by Malcolm (Cinema) Pickney

On Monday, August 7, Commissioner Henry J. (StarQuest) Stern helped kick off a week-long project to rescue thousands of Central Park's fish and turtles from the famous pond located at Central Park's southeast corner. The pond is undergoing a $4 million, Central Park Conservancy-funded reconstruction designed to recapture the spirit of the original Olmstead design and promote the health of plants and wildlife. But before improvements can begin on the pond itself, the water must be drained and the animal inhabitants moved to new homes for the duration of the project.

Central Park Conservancy staff, the Natural Resources Group, and the Urban Park Rangers assisted in the rescue mission. Yesterday's fishing expedition netted Carp, Bluegills, as well as two types of turtles, Snapper and Slider, for transport. As they were captured, the fish were transferred immediately to large aerated tanks mounted on trucks. The Department of Environment Protection is providing a single aerated tank truck for one day with a capacity of 300 gallons, and the Conservancy will provide ten 115 gallon aerated tubs for the full week. Portions of the fish population were the transferred to Conservatory water, and later in the week the pond's turtle population will be rescued as well and released into the lake. It is estimated that about 4,000 fish and 50 to 60 turtles make the pond's southeast corner their home.

The comprehensive restoration of the pond will remove excess sediment from the pond, create an island to provide a secure and scenic wildlife habitat, improve the surrounding landscape, and install new benches and drinking fountains for the enjoyment of Park visitors.

CONGRATULATIONS

The Plant would like to congratulate three Parkies for their participation at the Great Hudson River Swim Saturday, August 5. The 2.8-mile swim, which began at the 79th Street Boat Basin, was the fourth race in the Manhattan Island Foundation's annual swim series. Landscape Architect Ricardo (Ashbridge) Hinkle finished 19th in 58 minutes 12 seconds. Capital Landscape Architect Patricia (Outside) Clark finished 47th in one hour 7 minute 4 seconds and Chief of Operations Nancy (Liberty) Barthold, 51st in one hour 7 minutes, 47 seconds. There were 70 finishers. The series of races in the Hudson benefit the New York City Learn to swim Program, which helps to establish swimming programs for children as well as rehabilitate swimming pools.

--Erwin Rosinberg

THIRTEEN YEARS AGO IN THE PLANT
(Tuesday, August 11, 1987)

A PREMIER WATERBIRD COLONY FEEDS IN BRONX PARK

For the first time in a decade, 13-acre Huckleberry Island, just off the shore of New Rochelle was surveyed for its colonial waterbirds in 1986 and 1987. Huckleberry Island is important to the Parks Department because most of its nesting birds are probably sustained by the only major feeding grounds in the area-the salt marshes, mudflats, and shores of Pelham Bay Park. Parks Wildlife specialists discovered the sixth known Double-crested Cormorant (Phalacrocorax auritus) colony in New York on the island in 1986, which numbered nearly 100 active nests in 1987. Many more cormorants and other birds were counted this year than last, about 2,000 in all. Since Herring Gulls (Larus argentatus) and Great Black-backed Gulls (Larus marinus) started nesting on Huckleberry Island in 1976 and 1977 respectively, they have grown to an estimated 700 pairs total.

QUOTATION FOR THE DAY

An aphorism should be like a burr: sting, stick, and leave a little soreness afterwards.

Irving Layton (b. 1912)

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Pelham Bay Park Weather

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    63°F
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    Partly Sunny
    60°F
  • Sat
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    69°F
  • Sun
    Mostly Sunny
    59°F

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