October 2014 
Congratulations to Eric Whalen for his winning photo contest entry, "Red Path"
In This Issue
ANR Secretary 
Deb Markowitz
From the Secretary's Desk: Each Of Us Matter When It Comes To Environmental Stewardship 
"All great change in America begins at the dinner table." 
- Ronald Reagan

 

Every couple of months, ANR staff come together for a breakfast, brown bag lunch or afternoon coffee to share information about work going on within the agency, or to hear from an outside speaker. This past month we had the great pleasure of hearing from former reporter, naturalist and educator Brian Pfeiffer. Bryan's topic was, "Talking So That People Will Listen: Communicating About Science And The Environment." He started off by stating the challenge bluntly... Read more...

Agency of Natural Resources:
  
BioFinder Video Helps Community Leaders Protect Wildlife
- By Jon Kart, Vt. Fish & Wildlife Dept.
Vermont's Agency of Natural Resources has created a new video introducing its BioFinder map tool. Read more...
Introduction to BioFinder
Introduction to BioFinder
Dept. of Environmental Conservation
  
From "Waste" to Valuable Resource: Food Recovery in Vermont 
 - By Josh Kelly, Vermont DEC Waste Management Program
In many US households there is a new sign in the fridge with the words, "EAT ME FIRST."  The USEPA, in partnership with a private consultant and local and state governments, has initiated a series of pilot projects to help families reduce food waste and save money through... 
Dept. of Forests, Parks and Recreation
  
How It Feels to Catch a Frog
 - By Rebecca Phelps, Conservation Education Coordinator
Recently while walking, we found a squished red eft on the side of the road. My little daughter was fascinated and it was difficult to peel her away. Walking into the bushes and finding a spring peeper was just the distraction. Watching a preschooler try to get her hands safely but firmly around a small, wriggling, hopping amphibian is one of the best... Read more . . . .
Dept. of Fish & Wildlife:
  
Science at the Hatchery Event Introduces Students to Fish and our Natural Resources
- By Ethan Swift, MAPP Program
Shawn Good, F&W Fisheries Biologist, shows off a brown trout at Science on the Hatchery
On Sept. 16th, approximately 200 5th and 6th graders attended the annual "Science at the Hatchery" event at the Dwight D. Eisenhower U.S. Fish and Wildlife National Fish Hatchery in Chittenden, Vermont. The students from eight Rutland County elementary schools engaged in interactive learning sessions on fish and fisheries habitat, water quality, river dynamics, wetlands, forestry, soils, bird migration, and recycling. Students were given a tour of the fish hatchery and learned about...  

 Read more . . .

ANR:
  
September Photo Contest Winners Announced!
Second Place Winner is this beautiful image by Heather Glenn
We had a fantastic response to our request for photographers this month! We had more than 20 photographers enter images (the most ever!) and received just shy of 200 entries (which made it even more difficult than usual to choose our winners. )

This month, first place went to Eric Whalen, a newcomer to the ANR photo contests (@boarderdude7264 on Instagram). We were astounded at the image itself - the surrounding trees were all yellow and green (not a red leaf to be seen) and yet the path through them is deep scarlet, inviting the viewer deeper into the forest to learn its secrets.

Our other October winners are as follows:

Second Place: Heather Glenn (@hlglenn on Instagram) for her gorgeous shot of light filtering through a transitioning forest (above)
Third Place: Anne Majusiak for her dreamy image of leaves on a forest path

Readers can view all winning images as well as honorable mentions here. To view finalists click here, and to see all images submitted this month, have a look at the full album here.
Fun Facts:
  
Your Septic System Questions Answered
Last month as a part of our SepticSmart celebration, we invited the public to ask questions about their septic systems of our experts. This month, we feature answers to some of the most common questions:

Q1: Does greywater (from sinks, showers and washing machines) result in the septic system discharging more pollutants by reducing the efficiency of the system? Would diverting the greywater to other systems make septic systems more efficient? Click here for our answer.

Q2: There are times when my plumbing has poor drainage and I detect a faint septic odor. I have my septic tank pumped regularly. Is this to be expected? Click here for our answer.

Q3: How do I know when to pump my septic tank and when is the best time of year? Click here for our answer.

Q4: My drainfield is sometimes wet and has spongy grass. Is this to be expected? Click here for our answer.

Q5: Are septic tank additives helpful? Click here for our answer.

Did You Hear?
  
News Worth Mentioning
Home Composting Tips for the Coming Winter

If you are composting at home already, odds are you've noticed your food scraps freezing in winter. As any compost doctor will tell you, "this is completely normal."

Home composting is also sometimes called 'cold composting' and partially that is due to our cold New England weather. Read more...
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Vermont Fish & Wildlife Conservation Camps - Recapping the 2014 Camp Season

Each year, close to 1000 campers ages 12-16 take time out of their summer vacations to attend a Green Mountain Conservation Camp (GMCC). Campers at each of the week-long sessions have a unique opportunity to meet state Game Wardens, foresters, fisheries and wildlife biologists, and others who work in the outdoors. Our attendees receive hands-on learning opportunities on fish, wildlife, ecology, botany, forestry, first aid and outdoor safety topics, and much more, all in a natural setting with opportunities for hiking, canoeing, fishing, archery, orienteering, and other fun activities. 

After the campers have gone home and the camp has been winterized, our dedicated Fish & Wildlife staff produce a newsletter recapping the season, and sharing highlights with campers, families and the public. To read more about the highlights of the 2014 GMCC season, check out the latest newsletter. If you or someone you know is interested in learning more about our Conservation Camps, have a look at the camp web page here.
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Applications Now Being Accepted for the 2015 Governor's Awards for Environmental Excellence
 
Applications are now being accepted for the 2015 Governor's Awards for Environmental Excellence. The awards recognize the actions taken by individuals and organizations to conserve and protect natural resources, prevent pollution, and to promote sustainability. The Vermont Governor's Awards were established in 1993, and to-date more than 200 award winning efforts have been recognized. 

"The Governor's Awards for Environmental Excellence recognize and publicize innovative and effective efforts to conserve and protect our natural resources in Vermont," according to ANR Secretary Deb Markowitz. 

Applications are due Feburary 2, 2015 and award winners will be recognized in a ceremony in the spring. For more detail on the application process and previous award winners see: www.eaovt.org or email gary.gulka@state.vt.us
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Congratulations to the 2014 Leadership and Management Graduates:

The Leadership and Management program is a four year, self-directed program administered by the State of Vermont, and geared to provide the participants with a professional development resource. The multi-course learning experience was created to develop current and emerging leaders in state government. The program is taught by top organizational consultants and experts within state government, and is designed to be both intellectually challenging and practical. It provides a unique opportunity for managers and leaders statewide to learn together about their common challenges and to share strategies for success. This year the Agency of Natural Resources is proud to have four graduates of the program. 

Please join us in honoring our 2014 Leadership and Management graduates:
  • Reuben Allen - Forests, Parks and Recreation
  • Tracy LaFrance - Environmental Conservation
  • Elaine O'Grady - Environmental Conservation
  • Matt Guerino - Environmental Conservation
Congratulations to all!
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Check Us Out On Social Media!
Stay connected with us for announcements, sustainability tips, hunting and fishing news, scenic landscape and wildlife photos from our staff in the field, public meeting and comment notices and more:
 
Facebook: Like us at www.facebook.com/VTANR

Twitter: Look for our handle @VTANR

Instagram: For photo contests and gorgeous field shots from our staff, follow us on Instagram at @VTANR

Vermont Agency of Natural Resources | 802-828-1294 |
anr.info@state.vt.us | http://www.anr.state.vt.us
1 National Life Drive
Davis 2
Montpelier, VT 05620-3901

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