Outdoor Radio

Outdoor Radio

From Vermont Public Radio

The Vermont Center for Ecostudies and VPR unite the sounds and science of nature in this monthly feature. The program is hosted by biologists Kent McFarland and Sara Zahendra, who share their knowledge, expertise and enthusiasm for wildlife education and conservation.More from Outdoor Radio »

Most Recent Episodes

Outdoor Radio: The American Woodcock

The arrival of the American Woodcock is one of the exciting signs of spring in Vermont.

Outdoor Radio: The Elusive Lynx

Biologists Kent McFarland and Sara Zahendra traveled by snowmobile into the wilderness of the Northeast Kingdom in hopes of spotting a Canada lynx or lynx tracks.

Outdoor Radio: A Mega-Roost Of Crows

Crows are the stuff of movies, mysteries and dark lore. They are also smart, gregarious birds with fascinating habits including a gathering called the winter roost when thousands of crows group together late in the day.

Outdoor Radio: Managing The Deer Herd

Biologists Kent McFarland and Sara Zahendra visited a deer reporting station in Barre during Youth Hunting Weekend. They talked with biologist John Buck of the Vermont Fish And Game Department about how the state manages the deer herd and the role that deer play in Vermont's ecosystem. We also learn about why the state is extracting deer teeth for study this year. Much like counting the rings on a tree to determine it's age, slicing an incisor reveals rings that show us the animal's age. You can find more information about Vermont's tooth extraction program and management of the state's deer herd at these links: Tooth Collection Project.Vermont's white tail deer management plan.Facts about the health of Vermont's deer herd.Sightings of white tail deer at iNaturalist Vermont. Basic facts about the white tail deer.Outdoor Radio is produced in collaboration with the Vermont Center for Ecostudies with support from the Jack and Dorothy Byrne Foundation.

Outdoor Radio: Inside A Beaver Lodge

Beavers are often thought to be a nuisance, but they also make positive contributions to the environment.

Outdoor Radio: Amazing Migration

Putney Mountain is one of the high points in Vermont where bird watchers gather in early fall to see the migration of raptors and butterflies. Biologist Kent McFarland and Sara Zahendra explain how raptors travel for hundreds of miles using as little energy as possible. HawkCount offers this chart of the most recent raptor counts; the UVM EcoBlog provides more information about raptor migration in Vermont. Outdoor Radio is a monthly feature produced in collaboration with the Vermont Center for EcoStudies in Norwich Vermont with support from the Byrne Foundation. The program is produced and edited by VPR's Chief Production Engineer, Chris Albertine. This program originally aired September 14, 2014.

Outdoor Radio: Tracking The Monarch Butterfly

Monarch butterflies are hard to miss with their brilliant orange color and a wingspan that can reach four inches across. But recently they've been difficult to find because their numbers are in decline. In this edition of Outdoor Radio, biologists Sara Zahendra and Kent McFarland track Monarchs in the flower-filled fields of the Burlington Intervale. We'll learn how Monarchs migrate to Mexico and the challenges to their survival.

Outdoor Radio: A Pollinator Paradise At The Birds Of Vermont Museum

The Birds Of Vermont Museum in Huntington has created pollinator gardens to attract and support bees, butterflies, flies and other insects. Kent McFarland and Sara Zahendra, ecologists at the Vermont Center For Ecostudies, visited the museum to talk about pollinators and plants with Executive Director Erin Talmadge and Museum Educator Allison Gergely. The museum selected native and ornamental flowers that are attractive to both pollinators and gardeners. In this edition of Outdoor Radio, McFarland and Zahendra talk about the wide variety of insects that benefit from these special gardens and how to create a pollinator paradise in your own garden. To learn more about pollinators and how to attract them, we recommend these resources: Birds of Vermont MuseumXerces Society Pollinator GardensJoin the Million Pollinator Garden ChallengeAttracting Pollinators to Your Garden Using Native Plants from the US Forest Service​The Pollinator PartnershipWild Pollinators and VT's Food SystemVermont

Outdoor Radio: The Future Of Vermont's Lake Sturgeon

The lake sturgeon is an ancient, long-lived and peculiar fish that lives in Lake Champlain. Lake sturgeon can live as long as 150 years and weigh 300 pounds. They are basically a prehistoric relic — a fishasaurus!

Outdoor Radio: Amphibian Crossings

This month, Outdoor Radio takes you to Salisbury, Vermont where salamanders, newts and frogs are crossing Morgan Road to a swamp where they reproduce. Dozens of volunteers are keeping a tally, and when a car comes along, the volunteers scoop them up so they don't get squashed. Biologists Kent McFarland and Sara Zahendra are joined by Herpetologist Jim Andrews as the volunteers work with clipboards and flashlights to participate in this rite of Spring. Over the course of two and a half hours, 44 volunteers counted 512 amphibians. For more information about amphibian migrations in Vermont, check out these sites: View the Vermont Reptile and Amphibian AtlasReport your sightings of amphibians to the Vermont Atlas of LifeLearn about vernal pools and see a map of Vermont sitesOutdoor Radio is produced in collaboration with the Vermont Center For Ecostudies with support from the Windham Foundation. The program is recorded and produced by VPR's Chief Production Engineer Chris Albertine.

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