Friday, June 30, 2017

Episode 375 (7-3-17): Bald Eagle


CLICK HERE to listen to episode audio (3:47).

Transcript of audio, notes on the audio, photos, and additional information follow below.

All Web addresses mentioned were functional as of 6-30-17.


TRANSCRIPT OF AUDIO

From the Cumberland Gap to the Atlantic Ocean, this is Virginia Water Radio for the week of July 3, 2017.

This week we feature a Fourth of July mystery sound.   Have a listen for about 20 seconds, and see if you can guess what’s making the chirping, squawking, and wailing sounds.  And here’s a hint: If Benjamin Franklin had gotten his way, U.S. money might contain a picture of a Wild Turkey instead of a likeness of this creature.

SOUND - ~19 sec

If you guessed a Bald Eagle, you’re right!  Despite disapproval by Ben Franklin—who wrote that Bald Eagles’ habit of stealing food from other birds set a bad example of dishonesty—the Bald Eagle became the national emblem in 1782 when its image was included in the Great Seal of the United States.  Real Bald Eagles do, in fact, get food by taking fish that other birds have captured, along with scavenging and some hunting for a variety of animals.  Bald Eagles have recovered dramatically from endangered species status in the United States, and they’re found in every state except Hawaii, typically along large water bodies with long shorelines, such as the Chesapeake Bay and Virginia’s major rivers.  In these areas the birds nest in tall trees, using interwoven sticks, grass, and other materials to build large structures that may be re-used for many years.  The eggs incubated in those nests result after courtship flights described as spectacular and acrobatic, and it’s believed that most eagle pairs mate for life.

Inspiring appearance; aerial skill; durable constructions and bonds; resilience—apparently the good Dr. Franklin missed these national-emblem-worthy characteristics of Bald Eagles.

Thanks to Lang Elliott for permission to use this week’s sounds, from the Stokes Field Guide to Bird Songs.  And we close with a few seconds of music for our national bird, “Bald Eagle of Virginia,” by Timothy Seaman of Williamsburg.  Happy July 4th!

MUSIC - ~24 sec

SHIP’S BELL


For more Virginia water sounds, music, and information, visit us online at virginiawaterradio.org, or call us at (540) 231-5463.  Virginia Water Radio is produced by the Virginia Water Resources Research Center, part of Virginia Tech’s College of Natural Resources and Environment.   Thanks to Ben Cosgrove for his version of “Shenandoah” to open and close the show.  In Blacksburg, I’m Alan Raflo, thanking you for listening, and wishing you health, wisdom, and good water.

AUDIO NOTES AND ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

The sounds of the Bald Eagle were taken from the Stokes Field Guide to Bird Songs-Eastern Region CD set, by Lang Elliott with Donald and Lillian Stokes (Time Warner Audio Books, copyright 1997), used with permission of Lang Elliott, whose work is available online at the “Music of Nature” Web site, http://www.musicofnature.org/.

“Bald Eagle of Virginia,” a brand new work composed on June 29, 2017, is copyright by Timothy Seaman and Pine Wind Music; used with permission.  More information about Timothy Seaman is available online at http://timothyseaman.com/Click here to hear the full version of the composition (1 min./52 sec.).

Click here if you’d like to hear the full version (2 min./22 sec.) of the “Shenandoah” arrangement/performance by Ben Cosgrove that opens and closes this episode.  More information about Mr. Cosgrove is available online at http://www.bencosgrove.com.

This episode updates and replaces two previous episodes featuring the Bald Eagle, Episode 57 (3-14-11) and Episode 117 (7-2-12).  Bald Eagle sounds are also included in Episode 294 (12-14-15), on the annual Christmas Bird Count organized by the National Audubon Society.

IMAGES
White-headed Eagle (a formerly used name for Bald Eagle) painting originally published between 1827 and 1838 by John James Audubon in Birds of America, Plate XXXI (31), as reprinted in 1985 by Abbeville Press, New York.  The painting includes wwhat Audubon called a Yellow Catfish caught by the bird.  Photo taken June 29, 2017, from the reprint copy (no. 6 of 350 copies printed in 1985) owned by Special Collections of Virginia Tech Libraries.  Virginia Water Radio thanks Special Collections for permission to photograph their copy and for their assistance. Information about Birds of America is available from the National Audubon Society, online at http://www.audubon.org/birds-of-america.
Bald Eagle in flight.  Photo by Todd Harless, made available for public use by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's National Digital Library, online at http://digitalmedia.fws.gov, accessed 6-29-17.
EXTRA FACTS ABOUT BALD EAGLES

Following are excerpts from the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, “Fish and Wildlife Information Service/Bald Eagle/Life History,” online at http://vafwis.org/fwis/booklet.html?Menu=_.Life+History&bova=040093&version=17347.

“In adult plumage, the head, neck, tail, and upper and lower tail coverts are white. …The juvenile and subadult plumages are mainly brown, including the head and tail. …The adult plumage is attained in about 4-5 years.

“This species nests almost exclusively in live trees, although desert populations will sometimes nest on cliffs or on the ground.  The average height of a nest tree in the Chesapeake Bay region was 27 meters.  Nest trees usually have stout limbs and open canopies which provide a clear flight path into at least one side of the nest.  The nest is usually just below the crown of the tree.  The nest is constructed with large sticks with softer materials such as dead weeds, cornstalks, grassses and sod as a lining. …They tend to nest close to shore, but will nest further inland if shorelines are disturbed by humans.

“The bald eagle feeds mainly on fish but also takes birds, mammals, and other invertebrates. …This species uses communal roost sites and congregates at foraging areas in the winter and summer. …This species requires a constant food supply best met through a diverse prey base …This species will concentrate in the area of large fish kills such as the vicinity of large power plants.  This species is opportunistic and will utilize both live prey and carrion. Besides fish, they also take waterfowl, muskrats, cottontail rabbits, and 5 species of turtles.

“Tree species used for nest sites include loblolly (most frequent), and Virginia pines, oaks, tulip poplar, beech, and hickory.

“Storms and other adverse weather conditions are considered by many to be a threat to nesting bald eagle populations.   The accidents that usually cause mortality are collisions with power lines and other obstructions, and less frequently with aircraft.  The presence of DDE in eggs can cause eggshell thinning and is associated with the reduction in mean productivity for this species.  Reproductive success is also influenced by dieldrin and PCB levels.   There is also a potential for lead poisoning where eagles feed on prey that has been killed or crippled by lead pellets.  Habitat modification and the destruction of nests continue to be limiting factors for eagles in the Chesapeake Bay Region.

“Eagles will attack osprey that are carrying fish and drive them away if they are foraging in the eagles area.  They also interrelate with the American crow, common merganser, great black gulls, common ravens and northern harriers. …The eagle must sometimes compete for the same nest with the great horned owl.  They must also compete with the osprey and herons during periods of food shortage.

“This species requires miles of shoreline along unpolluted water with high perching and lookout points, and tall, often dead, trees for nests.”

SOURCES

Used in Audio

John James Audubon, “White-headed Eagle,” from Birds of America (1827-1838), Plate 31, accessed at the Audubon Web site, online at http://www.audubon.org/birds-of-america/white-headed-eagle.

David A. Buehler, “Bald Eagle,” No. 506 in The Birds of North America, A. Poole and F. Gill, eds., Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology and the Academy of Natural Sciences, 2000; available online (subscription required) at “Birds of North America Online,” http://bna.birds.cornell.edu/bna. This article (page 13 of print edition) describes Bald Eagle courtship as follows: “Spectacular courtship rituals, involving vocalizations and acrobatic flight displays. Perhaps most noted courtship act is Cartwheel Display, in which courting pair fly to great altitude, lock talons, and tumble/cartwheel back toward earth; pair break off display at the last moment to avoid collision with the ground.”

Center for Conservation Biology, “Bald Eagle,” online at http://www.ccbbirds.org/what-we-do/research/species-of-concern/virginia-eagles/; and “Facts About Eagles,” online at http://www.ccbbirds.org/what-we-do/research/species-of-concern/virginia-eagles/facts-about-eagles/.  The Center for Conservation Biology is a joint research program between the College of William and Mary and Virginia Commonwealth University.

Chesapeake Bay Program, “Bald Eagle,” online at http://www.chesapeakebay.net/fieldguide/critter/bald_eagle.

Stanley Finger, Doctor Franklin’s Medicine, University of Pennsylvania Press, Philadelphia, 2006; description available online at http://www.upenn.edu/pennpress/book/14178.html.

Library of Congress, “Symbols of the United States,” online (as PDF) at http://www.loc.gov/teachers/classroommaterials/primarysourcesets/symbols-us/pdf/teacher_guide.pdf.

Oxford Dictionary and Thesaurus/American Edition, Oxford University Press, New York/Oxford, 1996. According to Oxford Dictionary, “bald” comes from Middle English “ballede” originally meaning “having a white patch.” This helps explain the transition of the Bald Eagle’s name from the “White-headed Eagle.”

Hope Rutledge, “American Bald Eagle Information,” online at http://www.baldeagleinfo.com/.

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, “Bald and Golden Eagle Information,” online at https://www.fws.gov/birds/management/managed-species/bald-and-golden-eagle-information.php.

Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, “Fish and Wildlife Information Service,” online at http://vafwis.org/fwis/?Title=VaFWIS+Species+Information+By+Name&vUT=Visitor.

Online Eagle Cameras

American Eagle Foundation, “Washington, D.C., Bald Eagle Nest Cam,” online at http://www.dceaglecam.org/.

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service/National Conservation Training Center, “Eagle Cam,” online at https://nctc.fws.gov/topic/eagle-cam/.

For More Information about Eagles and Other Birds in Virginia and Elsewhere

Cornell University Lab of Ornithology, “All About Birds,” online at http://www.allaboutbirds.org.

Cornell University Lab of Ornithology and the Audubon Society, “eBird,” online at http://ebird.org/content/ebird/.   Here you can find locations of species observations made by contributors, and you can sign up to contribute your own observations.

Alice Jane Lippson and Robert L. Lippson, Life in the Chesapeake Bay, Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, Md. (2006).

Virginia Society of Ornithology: online at http://www.virginiabirds.org/.  The Society is non-profit organization dedicated to the study, conservation, and enjoyment of birds in the Commonwealth.

Xeno-canto Foundation Web site at http://www.xeno-canto.org/.  The site provides bird songs from around the world.

RELATED VIRGINIA WATER RADIO EPISODES

All Water Radio episodes are listed by category at the Index link above (http://www.virginiawaterradio.org/p/index.html).  See particularly the “Birds” subject category.

Previous episodes for July 4th are the following:
Episode 168, 7/1/13 – Rivers and other water bodies in the Revolutionary War;
Episode 220, 6/30/14 – River origins of Virginia’s Declaration of Independence signers;
Episode 273, 7/6/15 – The Great Road connecting three Virginia colonial and Revolutionary War sites;
Episode 323, 7/4/16 – Imagining a Green Frog debate for July 4th.

STANDARDS OF LEARNING (SOLs) FOR VIRGINIA TEACHERS

The episode may help with Virginia 2013 Music SOLs at various grade levels that call for “examining the relationship of music to the other fine arts and other fields of knowledge.”

The episode may also help with the following 2010 Science SOLs:

Grades K-6 Earth Patterns, Cycles, and Change Theme
3.8 – Basic patterns and cycles in nature.

Grades K-6 Earth Resources Theme
3.10 - impacts on survival of species.
4.9 - Va. natural resources, including watersheds, water resources, and organisms.

Grades K-6 Life Processes Theme
K.7 - basic needs and processes of plants and animals.
1.5 - animals’ basic needs and distinguishing characteristics.
2.4 - life cycles.
3.4 - behavioral and physiological adaptations.

Grades K-6 Living Systems Theme
2.5 - living things as part of a system, including habitats.
3.5 - food webs.
3.6 - ecosystems, communities, populations, shared resources.
4.5 - ecosystem interactions and human influences on ecosystem.

Life Science Course
LS.6 - ecosystem interactions, including the water cycle, other cycles, and energy flow.
LS.8 - community and population interactions, including food webs, niches, symbiotic relationships.
LS.9 - adaptations for particular ecosystems’ biotic and abiotic factors, including characteristics of land, marine, and freshwater environments.
LS.10 - changes over time in ecosystems, communities, and populations, and factors affecting those changes, including climate changes and catastrophic disturbances.
LS.11 - relationships between ecosystem dynamics and human activity.

Earth Science Course
ES.8 - influences by geologic processes and the activities of humans on freshwater resources, including identification of groundwater and major watershed systems in Virginia.

Biology Course
BIO.8 - dynamic equilibria and interactions within populations, communities, and ecosystems; including nutrient cycling, succession, effects of natural events and human activities, and analysis of the flora, fauna, and microorganisms of Virginia ecosystems.

The episode may also help with the following Virginia 2015 Social Studies SOLs, which become effective in the 2017-18 school year:

Virginia Studies Course
VS.1 – impact of geographic features on people, places, and events in Virginia history.

United States History to 1865 Course
USI.5 – factors that shaped colonial America and conditions in the colonies, including how people interacted with the environment to produce goods and service.
USI.6 – causes, people, and results of the American Revolution.

World Geography Course
WG.2 - how selected physical and ecological processes shape the Earth’s surface, including climate, weather, and how humans influence their environment and are influenced by it.
WG.3 - how regional landscapes reflect the physical environment and the cultural characteristics of their inhabitants.

Government Course
GOVT.15 – role of government in Va. and U.S. economies, including examining environmental issues and property rights.

Virginia’s SOLs are available from the Virginia Department of Education, online at http://www.doe.virginia.gov/testing/.

Monday, June 26, 2017

Episode 374 (6-26-17): A River Trip from Roanoke to Staunton


CLICK HERE to listen to episode audio (4:02).

Transcript of audio, notes on the audio, photos, and additional information follow below.

All Web addresses mentioned were functional as of 6-23-17.


TRANSCRIPT OF AUDIO

From the Cumberland Gap to the Atlantic Ocean, this is Virginia Water Radio for the week of June 26, 2017.

MUSIC – ~5 sec

This week, the music of “Exploring the Rivers,” by Williamsburg’s Timothy Seaman, sets the stage for a Virginia river riddle.  Have a listen for about 25 seconds to two river sounds recorded on June 15, 2017, and as you do, try to answer this question: How can water flow from Roanoke to Staunton and again to Roanoke?

SOUNDS - ~26 sec

If you guessed, within the Roanoke and Staunton rivers, you’re a southern Virginia geography expert!  You heard the Roanoke River in the City of Roanoke, followed by the Staunton River in the Campbell County town of Altavista.  The trick is, they’re the same river!  Downstream of Roanoke City, the section of the Roanoke River between Leesville Lake and Buggs Island Lake is called the Staunton River.  Below Buggs Island Lake, through North Carolina and finally into Albemarle Sound, the river is again called the Roanoke.

Some records or maps may use only the Roanoke name, but the Staunton name dominates locally and has a long history.  Three hundred years ago, “Staunton” applied to the whole river above its confluence with the Dan River, according to William Byrd’s 1728 History of the Dividing Line Betwixt Virginia and North Carolina.

Today, the Staunton River is notable for more than just its name.   A 51-mile section is designated as a state scenic river.  The Staunton offers rapids for paddlers, flat water for motorboats, and abundant game fish populations for anglers.  And the river is home to two state parks: Staunton River State Park, a 2400-acre site with the distinction of being Virginia’s first international dark-sky park; and Staunton River Battlefield State Park, commemorating a June 25, 1864, Civil War battle focused on the Richmond & Danville Railway.

A river within a river, the Staunton enriches southern Virginia’s history, recreation, and natural habitat.

Thanks to Timothy Seaman for permission to use this week’s music, and in the spirit of investigating river names, history, and connections, we close with a few more seconds of “Exploring the Rivers.”

MUSIC - ~ 13 sec.

SHIP’S BELL

For more Virginia water sounds, music, and information, visit us online at virginiawaterradio.org, or call us at (540) 231-5463.  Virginia Water Radio is produced by the Virginia Water Resources Research Center, part of Virginia Tech’s College of Natural Resources and Environment.  Thanks to Stewart Scales for his banjo version of Cripple Creek to open and close the show.  In Blacksburg, I’m Alan Raflo, thanking you for listening, and wishing you health, wisdom, and good water.

AUDIO NOTES AND ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

“Exploring the Rivers,” from the 2006 album “Jamestown: On the Edge of a Vast Continent,” is copyright by Timothy Seaman and Pine Wind Music, used with permission.   Mr. Seaman’s Web site is http://www.timothyseaman.com/. T his music was featured in Virginia Water Radio Episode 140, 12-10-12.

Click here if you’d like to hear the full version (1 min./11 sec.) of the “Cripple Creek” arrangement/performance by Stewart Scales that opens and closes this episode.  More information about Mr. Scales and the group New Standard, with which Mr. Scales plays, is available online at http://newstandardbluegrass.com.

PHOTOS

All photos taken June 15, 2017.

Sign for Staunton River High School in Bedford County.
Walkway over railroad in Altavista (Campbell County).
Staunton River at Altavista River Park.
State Scenic River sign at Staunton River crossing of Route 731 at Long Island (Campbell County).

Sycamore tree with rope swing over the Staunton River at Long Island Park (Campbell County).
Staunton River, looking upstream, viewed from trail in Long Island Park (Campbell County).

EXTRA FACTS ABOUT THE STAUNTON RIVER

On the River’s General Characteristics“The Staunton River is located in south-central Virginia and forms the boundaries of Campbell, Pittsyvania, Halifax, and Charlotte counties.  Actually an 81-mile segment of the Roanoke River, the Staunton River begins at Leesville Dam and continues to the confluence with John H. Kerr Reservoir.  Bird watchers, anglers, and hunters will enjoy the bounty of the river and its adjacent bottomlands. Canoeists can experience the challenging Fish Trap (Class III) and Cat Rock (Class II) rapids.  In addition, an abundance of flat water is available for those individuals seeking a more relaxing trip down the river.  Large sections of the Staunton River also are accessible to motorboats.  The bottomlands bordering the river are largely undeveloped and are under ownership of individuals, paper companies, or municipalities.”  Source: From the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, “Staunton River,” online at https://www.dgif.virginia.gov/waterbody/staunton-river/.

On the River’s Fisheries
“This 81 mile reach of river has two fairly distinct sections based on habitat availability.  The area from Leesville Dam to Brookneal has a higher gradient, stretches with plenty of braided river channel, and a better ratio of riffles:runs:pools.  For anglers, this equates to excellent habitat for Smallmouth Bass, Saugeye (Walleye x Sauger hybrid), and Walleye.  The Leesville Dam tailrace offers some of the best Walleye fishing in Virginia, but fish can be found throughout this reach.  The Smallmouth Bass fishing is excellent as well, with trophy fish a real possibility.  Channel Catfish and Flathead Catfish are found in high abundances in this reach as well.  Channel Catfish are collected in greater abundances in the Staunton River than any other river in the state, so anglers can anticipate good catch rates.  While not as abundant, large Flathead Catfish are found throughout the entire reach.”  Source: Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, “Staunton River Popular Report 2016,” online (as PDF) at https://www.dgif.virginia.gov/wp-content/uploads/Staunton-River-Popular-Report-2016.pdf.

On the River’s Name
This seems to remain something of a mystery.  One older source ttributes the name to Captain Henry Staunton, a soldier who led a patrol in the area when it was first being settled by Europeans (see R. H. Early, Campbell Chronicles and Family Sketches—Embracing The History Of Campbell County, Virginia, 1782-1926, published in 1927; accessed online at http://files.usgwarchives.net/va/campbell/history/chronicles-rivers.txt).  But Captain Staunton is said to have served in the Revolutionary War, and as early as 1728, William Byrd noted that the river was called the Staunton, so it seems unlikely that it could have been named for the same Captain Staunton who was still around during the Revolutionary War.  Meanwhile, the town (now city) of Staunton, Virginia, established by European settlers in 1736, was named for Lady Rebecca Staunton, the wife of William Gooch, who served as the chief adminstrative officer (called the lieutenant governor) for the English colony of Virginia from 1727 to 1749.  William and Rebecca married in England in 1714, so Rebecca would presumably have been in Virginia by 1727, possibly making her the source of Staunton River name used in 1728 by William Byrd.  Virginia Water Radio would welcome clarification from any listeners who have information on this subject. Sources: City of Staunton, Virginia, “History,” online at https://www.ci.staunton.va.us/government/history; and Brent Tarter and the Dictionary of Virginia Biography, “William Gooch (1681-1751),” Virginia Foundation for the Humanities’ Encyclopedia Virginia, online at http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/.

SOURCES USED IN AUDIO AND OFFERING MORE INFORMATION

William Byrd, The Westover Manuscripts: Containing the History of the Dividing Line Betwixt Virginia and North Carolina; A Journey to the Land of Eden, A. D. 1733; and A Progress to the Mines. Written from 1728 to 1736, and Now First Published, Printed by Edmund and Julian C. Ruffin, Petersburg, Va., 1841, available from the State Library of North Carolina online at http://docsouth.unc.edu/nc/byrd/byrd.html.

Historic Staunton River Foundation and Staunton River Battlefield State Park, online at https://www.historicstauntonriverfoundation.org/.

International Dark-Sky Association, “International Dark Sky Parks,” online at http://www.darksky.org/idsp/parks/. Staunton River State Park is listed as a “Certified International Dark Sky Park.”

Thomas L. Long, Martin H. Quitt, and the Dictionary of Virginia Biography, “William Byrd (1674-1744),” Virginia Foundation for the Humanities’ Encyclopedia Virginia, online at http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/.

OuterBanks.com, “History of Roanoke Island,” online at https://www.outerbanks.com/roanoke-island.html.

Mary M. Root, “Virginia and North Carolina Boundary Line,” undated (most recent reference cited was 1989), online at Surveyors Historical Society Web site, http://www.surveyhistory.org/va_&_nc_bounary_line.htm.

Dan Shaw, OldHalifax.com, “Staunton Scenic River Tour,” online at http://www.oldhalifax.com/county/StauntonRiverTour.htm.

Brent Tarter and the Dictionary of Virginia Biography, “William Gooch (1681-1751),” Virginia Foundation for the Humanities’ Encyclopedia Virginia, online at http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/.

University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill Library, “Documenting the American South: William Byrd, 1674-1744 and Edmund Ruffin, 1794-1865,” online at http://docsouth.unc.edu/nc/byrd/summary.html.

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, “John H. Kerr Dam and Reservoir,” online at http://www.saw.usace.army.mil/Locations/District-Lakes-and-Dams/John-H-Kerr/.

U.S. Geological Survey, “Geographic Names Information System/Roanoke River,” online at https://geonames.usgs.gov/apex/f?p=gnispq:3:0::NO::P3_FID:1502110.

Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation, “Scenic Rivers Program,” online at http://www.dcr.virginia.gov/recreational-planning/srmain.

Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation, “Staunton River State Park,” online at http://www.dcr.virginia.gov/state-parks/staunton-river#general_information.

Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation, “Staunton River Battlefield State Park,” online at http://www.dcr.virginia.gov/state-parks/staunton-river-battlefield#general_information.

Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, “Staunton River,” online at https://www.dgif.virginia.gov/waterbody/staunton-river/.

VDGIF, “Staunton River Popular Report 2016,” online (as PDF) at https://www.dgif.virginia.gov/wp-content/uploads/Staunton-River-Popular-Report-2016.pdf.

Virginiaplaces.org, “Staunton vs. Roanoke River,” http://www.virginiaplaces.org/watersheds/stauntonroanoke.html.

VirginiaPlaces.org, “Virginia-North Carolina Boundary,” http://www.virginiaplaces.org/boundaries/ncboundary.html.

John White, “La Virginea Pars,” Virginia Foundation for the Humanities’ Encyclopedia Virginia, online at https://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/media_player?mets_filename=evm00003108mets.xml.  [A late 16th Century map by the English artist John White, showing the east coast of North America from the Chesapeake Bay to Cape Lookout in present-day North Carolina.]

For More Information about the Virginia’s Southern Rivers

Virginia Water Central News Grouper posts on news, events, and information resources relevant to the Virginia’s southern rivers—that is, those in the watersheds of the Ohio River/Gulf of Mexico or Albemarle Sound in North Carolina, and not in the Chesapeake Bay watershed—are available online at https://vawatercentralnewsgrouper.wordpress.com/category/water-quality-and-habitat-in-virginias-southern-rivers/.

RELATED VIRGINIA WATER RADIO EPISODES

All Water Radio episodes are listed by category at the Index link above (http://www.virginiawaterradio.org/p/index.html).  See particularly the “History” subject category, and for previous episodes on specific rivers or other water-related geographic features in Virginia, the “Rivers, Streams, and Other Surface Water” category.

Following are links to some selected episodes focusing on Virginia’s water-related geography.
Big Sandy River's Three Forks - Episode 162, 5/20/13;
Exploration of the Chesapeake Bay - Episode 140, 12/10/12;
Forks in Waterways - Episode 284, 10/2/15;
Geography - Episode 265, 5/11/15;
Mountain Gaps - Episode 288, 11/2/15;
River bluffs - Episode 173, 8/5/13;
Settlement of Roanoke - Episode 181, 9/30/13;
Virginia Rivers Quiz (Clinch, James, New, Potomac, Rappahannock) - Episode 334, 9/19/16;
Walk across Virginia - Episode 110, 5/14/12;
Watersheds - Episode 156, 4/8/13; Episode 209, 4/14/14; Episode 251, 2/2/15; Episode 365. 4/24/17.

STANDARDS OF LEARNING (SOLs) FOR VIRGINIA TEACHERS

The episode may help with Virginia 2013 Music SOLs at various grade levels that call for “examining the relationship of music to the other fine arts and other fields of knowledge.”

This episode may also help with the following Virginia 2010 Science SOLs:

Grades K-6 Earth Resources Theme
4.9 - Va. natural resources, including watersheds, water resources, and organisms.

Grades K-6 Living Systems Theme
6.7 - natural processes and human interactions that affect watershed systems; Va. watersheds, water bodies, and wetlands; and water monitoring.

Earth Science Course
ES.8 - influences by geologic processes and the activities of humans on freshwater resources, including identification of groundwater and major watershed systems in Virginia.

Biology Course
BIO.8 - dynamic equilibria and interactions within populations, communities, and ecosystems; including nutrient cycling, succession, effects of natural events and human activities, and analysis of the flora, fauna, and microorganisms of Virginia ecosystems.

The episode may also help with the following Virginia 2015 Social Studies SOLs:

Virginia Studies Course
VS.1 – impact of geographic features on people, places, and events in Virginia history.
VS.2 – physical geography and native peoples of Virginia past and present.
VS.3 – first permanent English settlement in America.
VS.10 – knowledge of government, geography, and economics in present-day Virginia.

United States History to 1865 Course
USI.2 – major land and water features of North America.
USI.4 – European exploration in North America and western Africa.

Civics and Economics Course
CE.7 – government at the state level.

World Geography Course
WG.2 - how selected physical and ecological processes shape the Earth’s surface, including climate, weather, and how humans influence their environment and are influenced by it.
WG.3 - how regional landscapes reflect the physical environment and the cultural characteristics of their inhabitants.

Virginia and United States History Course
VUS.2 – early European exploration and colonization and interactions among Europeans, Africans, and American Indians.

Government Course
GOVT.8 – state and local government organization and powers.

Virginia’s SOLs are available from the Virginia Department of Education, online at http://www.doe.virginia.gov/testing/.

Monday, June 19, 2017

Episode 373 (6-19-17): The James River Batteau Festival


CLICK HERE to listen to episode audio (5:15).

Transcript of audio, notes on the audio, photos, and additional information follow below.

All Web addresses mentioned were functional as of 6-16-17.


TRANSCRIPT OF AUDIO

From the Cumberland Gap to the Atlantic Ocean, this is Virginia Water Radio for the week of June 19, 2017.

SOUND – ~3 sec

This week, the sound of the James River at Lynchburg opens a revised repeat of a 2013 episode—a “double-header” of music and sounds to mark the annual James River Batteau Festival.  Batteaux [the plural of batteau] were wooden, shallow-draft boats used on the James and many other rivers and canals to transport goods in the 18th and 19th centuries.  Such boats have been called the tractor-trailers of their day, traveling on water-based highways.  The batteau era ended with the widespread building of railroads in the 1800s, but the annual batteau festival—an eight-day float down the James on replica vessels—recalls the boats, crews, costumes, and lifestyle of the era.  The 120-mile float in 2017 starts in Lynchburg on June 17 and ends at Maidens boat landing in Powhatan County on June 24.

We mark this unique water event first with a 45-second excerpt from a song about river boatmen losing their jobs to the railroads: “James River Blues,” by Old Crow Medicine Show on the 2006 album “Big Iron World,” from Nettwork Records.  Following the music are about 90 seconds of sounds from the batteau festival launch in Lynchburg in June 2013.  The speaker is Jeff Taylor, the emcee at that event, and the loud boom you’ll hear is a replica cannon on one of the boats.

MUSIC - ~45 sec

VOICES and SOUNDS - ~85 sec

More information on batteaux and on other historical river and canal transportation is available from the Virginia Canals and Navigations Society, which organizes the annual James River batteau journey.  Thanks to Old Crow Medicine Show for permission to use this week’s music, and we close with a few more seconds of “James River Blues.”

MUSIC - ~9 sec

SHIP’S BELL

For more Virginia water sounds, music, and information, visit us online at virginiawaterradio.org, or call us at (540) 231-5463.   Virginia Water Radio is produced by the Virginia Water Resources Research Center, part of Virginia Tech’s College of Natural Resources and Environment.  Thanks to Ben Cosgrove for his version of “Shenandoah” to open and close the show.   In Blacksburg, I’m Alan Raflo, thanking you for listening, and wishing you health, wisdom, and good water.

AUDIO NOTES AND ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

This episode is an updated repeat of Episode 166 (6-17-13); that episode has been archived.

“James River Blues” and “Big Iron World” by Old Crow Medicine Show are 2006 copyright Nettwork Records, used with permission.   More information about Old Crow Medicine Show is available online at http://www.crowmedicine.com/.  Short segments of “James River Blues” are also included in the following Virginia Water Radio episodes: Episode 220 (6-30-14); Episode 251 (2-2-15); and Episode 334 (9-19-16).

Sounds from the 2013 Battteau Festival launch were recorded by Virginia Water Radio on June 15, 2013, on Percival’s Island in Lynchburg.  The band heard playing at that launch was the Virginia group Chamomile and Whiskey; information about that band is available online at http://www.countywidemusic.com/members-app/chamomile-and-whiskey.

Click here if you’d like to hear the full version (2 min./22 sec.) of the “Shenandoah” arrangement/performance by Ben Cosgrove that opens and closes this episode.   More information about Mr. Cosgrove is available online at http://www.bencosgrove.com.

PHOTOS

Three photos above: views from the June 15, 2013, James River Batteau Festival launch at Lynchburg, Va.


The stopping point for the 2017 James River Batteau Festival: the James near Maidens, Va., on the Goochland/Powhatan county line, shown here on June 19, 2007.

A photo gallery by the Lynchburg News & Advance of the 2017 James River Batteau Festival launch is available online at this link.

SOURCES

Used in Audio

James River Association, “The Lynchburg Launch Festival,” online at https://jrava.org/lynchburg-launch-festival/.

Minnie Lee McGehee, River Boat Echoes—Batteaux in Virginia, Virginia Canals and Navigations Society, McLean, Va., undated.

Virginia Canals and Navigations Society, home Web page at http://vacanals.org; and “James River Batteau Festival, online at http://www.vacanals.org/batteau/.

Virginia Canals and Navigations Society, James River Batteau Festival 2017 brochure, online (as PDF) at http://www.vacanals.org/batteau/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/JRBF_2017_Brochure.pdf.

City of Lynchburg, “James River Batteau Festival,” online at http://www.lynchburgvirginia.org/events/arts-culture/james-river-batteau-festival/.

For More Information about the James River Batteau Festival
Canoe is resurrected for Batteau Festival, Lynchburg News & Advance, as published by Roanoke Times, 6/18/15.

James River Batteau Festival launches a trip downriver ... and back in time, Lynchburg News & Advance, 6/17/17.

RELATED VIRGINIA WATER RADIO EPISODES

All Water Radio episodes are listed by category at the Index link above (http://www.virginiawaterradio.org/p/index.html).

Previous episodes with connections to the James River include the following:
Abraham Lincoln and the James River – Episode 201, 2/17/14;
James River Falls at Richmond – Episode 87, 11/7/11;
Rivers in Civil War efforts to capture Richmond – EP164 – 6/3/13
River basins starting at the Blue Ridge – Episode 209, 4/14/14;
Virginia’s Peninsula and Historic Triangle – Episode 273, 7/6/15;
Virginia Rivers Quiz (Clinch, James, New, Potomac, Rappahannock) – Episode 334, 9/19/16;
Water origins of Virginia Declaration signers – Episode 220, 6/30/14.

STANDARDS OF LEARNING (SOLs) FOR VIRGINIA TEACHERS

The episode may help with Virginia 2013 Music SOLs at various grade levels that call for “examining the relationship of music to the other fine arts and other fields of knowledge.”

This episode may also help with the following Virginia 2010 Science SOLs:

Grades K-6 Earth Resources Theme
4.9 - Va. natural resources, including watersheds, water resources, and organisms.

Grades K-6 Living Systems Theme
6.7 - natural processes and human interactions that affect watershed systems; Va. watersheds and water bodies.

The episode may also help with the following Virginia 2015 Social Studies SOLs, which become effective in the 2017-18 school year:

Virginia Studies Course
VS.1 – impact of geographic features on people, places, and events in Virginia history.
VS.10 – knowledge of government, geography, and economics in present-day Virginia.

United States History to 1865 Course
USI.2 – major land and water features of North America.
USI.5 – factors that shaped colonial America and conditions in the colonies, including how people interacted with the environment to produce goods and service.
USI.8 – westward expansion and reform from 1801-1861.

World Geography Course
WG.2 - how selected physical and ecological processes shape the Earth’s surface, including climate, weather, and how humans influence their environment and are influenced by it.
WG.3 - how regional landscapes reflect the physical environment and the cultural characteristics of their inhabitants.

Virginia and United States History Course
VUS.6 – Major events in first half of 1800s.

Virginia’s SOLs are available from the Virginia Department of Education, online at http://www.doe.virginia.gov/testing/.

Monday, June 12, 2017

Episode 372 (6-12-17): Infrastructure’s a Trillion Dollar Word


CLICK HERE to listen to episode audio (4:16).

Transcript of audio, notes on the audio, images, and additional information follow below.

All Web addresses mentioned were functional as of 6-9-17.
 

TRANSCRIPT OF AUDIO


From the Cumberland Gap to the Atlantic Ocean, this is Virginia Water Radio for the week of June 12, 2017.

SOUND – ~ 4 sec

This week, a ship’s horn sets the stage for a series of mystery sounds, all related to a newsworthy, widespread, and costly issue affecting structures from ports to public schools.   Have a listen for about 40 seconds, and see if you can guess this current issue.

SOUNDS - ~39 sec

If you guessed infrastructure, you’re right!  You heard the sounds of bridge traffic, a hydroelectric dam, a household faucet and drain, a river barge, trash, stormwater flow, and a Virginia state park name.  All represent aspects of the nation’s infrastructure, the engineered structures and systems supporting water and land use, energy, information, transportation, housing, schools, and other activities.

During late May and early June 2017, President Trump and some members of Congress announced separate proposals calling for investments of $1 to $2 trillion in the nation’s infrastructure.  Such calls for increased attention to infrastructure often cite the American Society of Civil Engineers’ “report card” on the state of engineered infrastructure in the United States.  Published every four years, the report covers infrastructure in 16 areas, assessing current conditions, future needs, and available funding.  The water-related areas include bridges, dams, drinking water, energy, hazardous waste, inland waterways, levees, ports, parks, solid waste, and wastewater.   The 2017 report gave a “grade” of D+, and it estimated the cost of making necessary infrastructure improvements at about $4.6 trillion.  The Virginia part of the report, based on information compiled in 2015 by the Society’s Virginia section, gave the Commonwealth’s infrastructure an overall grade of C-.

Whether obvious like a highway or hidden like wastwater pipes, infrastructure’s a foundation of society and economies.  Improving the infrastructure grade is a challenge for public officials, scientists, engineers, and citizens—one that’ll take time, innovation, and money.

SOUND - ~5 sec

Thanks to Freesound.org for the ship horn sound, and thanks to a Blacksburg friend for calling out the state park name.

SHIP’S BELL

For more Virginia water sounds, music, and information, visit us online at virginiawaterradio.org, or call us at (540) 231-5463.  Virginia Water Radio is produced by the Virginia Water Resources Research Center, part of Virginia Tech’s College of Natural Resources and Environment.  Thanks to Stewart Scales for his banjo version of Cripple Creek to open and close the show.  In Blacksburg, I’m Alan Raflo, thanking you for listening, and wishing you health, wisdom, and good water.

AUDIO NOTES AND ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

The ship fog horn was recorded by “inchadney” on June 3, 2012; accessed from the sound-sharing Web site, http://www.Freesound.org.

Click here if you’d like to hear the full version (1 min./11 sec.) of the “Cripple Creek” arrangement/performance by Stewart Scales that opens and closes this episode.   More information about Mr. Scales and the group New Standard, with which Mr. Scales plays, is available online at http://newstandardbluegrass.com.

IMAGE
Cartoon that accompanied a February 2010 Virginia Water Central Newsletter article on the 2009 infrastructure report by the American Society of Civil Engineers-Virginia Section. Illustration by George Wills, Blacksburg, Va. (http://www.etsy.com/people/BlacksburgArt).
EXTRA FACTS ABOUT THE INFRASTRUCTURE REPORT CARDS

Following are the infrastructure categories and 2017 grades from the American Society of Civil Engineers, “2017 Infrastructure Report Card,” online at http://www.infrastructurereportcard.org/.  According to “What Makes a Grade” at that Web site, 28 civil engineers volunteered their time to make the assessments, looking at capacity, conditions, funding, future need, operations and maintenance, public safety, innovation, and resilience.  The grades are described as follows: A = “exceptional, fit for the future”; B = “good, adequate for now”; C = “mediocre, requires attention”; D = “poor, at risk”; F = “failing/critical, unfit for purpose.”
Overall = D+
Aviation – D
Bridges – C+
Dams – D
Drinking water – D
Energy – D+
Hazardous Waste – D+
Inland Waterways – D
Levees – D
Ports – C+
Public Parks and Recreation – D+
Rail – B
Roads – D
School Facilities – D+
Solid Waste – C+
Transit – D-
Wastewater – D+

Following are the infrastructure categories and grades from the Virginia Section of the ASCE (ASCE-Va.), “2015 Virginia Infrastructure Report Card, online at http://www.infrastructurereportcard.org/state-item/virginia/.  The categories are assessed and grades are given using the same criteria as in the national ASCE report.
Overall – C-
Bridges – C
Dams – C
Drinking water – C
Parks – C+
Rail and transit – C-
Roads – D
School facilities – C-
Solid waste – B-
Stormwater – C-
Wastewater – D+

SOURCES

Used in Audio

American Society of Civil Engineers, “2017 Infrastructure Report Card,” online at http://www.infrastructurereportcard.org/.  A chart of results from previous reports–back to 1998–is available online at http://www.infrastructurereportcard.org/making-the-grade/report-card-history/.

American Society of Civil Engineers—Virginia Section, “2015 Virginia Infrastructure Report Card, online at http://www.infrastructurereportcard.org/state-item/virginia/.

Association of State Drinking Water Administrators, Dems Propose a $2 Trillion Infrastructure Plan, 5/26/17.

Sarah Drury, Virginia infrastructure earns grade of C-, Capital News Service, 1/21/15.

U.S. Rep. Ted Lieu (D-California), House Concurrent Resolution 63 (May 25, 2017), online at https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/house-concurrent-resolution/63/text.

Office of U.S. Sen. Patrick Leahy, Leahy, Sanders And Other Leading Senate Democrats Unveil $1 Trillion Infrastructure Plan, News Release, 1/24/17.

Oxford University Press/Oxford Living Dictionary, “infrastructure,” online at https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/infrastructure.   [“The basic physical and organizational structures and facilities (e.g., buildings, roads, power supplies) needed for the operation of a society or enterprise.”]

Heidi Przybyla, Democrats' infrastructure proposal contrasts with Trump's plan, budget, USA Today, 5/31/17.

Ken Thomas and Josh Boak, President Trump Launches $1 Trillion Initiative to Fix America's Infrastructure, Associated Press, as published by Time, 6/5/17.

The White House, President Trump’s Plan to Rebuild America’s Infrastructure, 6/8/17.

For More Information about Infrastructure Needs in Virginia and Elsewhere

National Bridge Inventory Database, online at http://nationalbridges.com/.

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, “CorpsMap—National Inventory of Dams, online at http://nid.usace.army.mil/cm_apex/f?p=838:12.

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, “Clean Watesheds Needs Survey 2012 Report to Congress,” available online at https://www.epa.gov/cwns.  According to this Web site, this report is an “assessment of capital investment needed nationwide for publicly-owned wastewater collection and treatment facilities to meet the water quality goals of the Clean Water Act.”

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, “Drinking Water Infrastructure Needs Survey and Assessment (Fifth Report to Congress,” EPA 816-R-013-006, April 2013), available online at https://www.epa.gov/tribaldrinkingwater/drinking-water-infrastructure-needs-survey-and-assessment-fifth-report-congress.

Virginia Department of Transportation, “VTrans 2025: Virginia’s Statewide Multimodal Long-range Transportation Plan” (November 17, 2004): available online (as PDF) at http://www.virginiadot.org/projects/vtrans/resources/revisedPhase3Reportforctb.pdf.

Virginia General Assembly joint subcommittee reports on school construction:
1) “Report on the Level of Assistance to Localities Necessary for Developing Adequate K-12 Schools Infrastructure,” House Document 5 for 2005 (published February 2005), available online at http://leg2.state.va.us/DLS/h&sdocs.nsf/a762cd2685f84d7a85256f030053196e/8e7c1e3d13b4f07185256ec500553c48?OpenDocument.

2) “K-12 School Infrastructure,” House Document 2 for2006 (published November 2005), available online at http://leg2.state.va.us/DLS/h&sdocs.nsf/a762cd2685f84d7a85256f030053196e/fec93d6935f5541285257082005f7768?OpenDocument.

RELATED VIRGINIA WATER RADIO EPISODES

All Water Radio episodes are listed by category at the Index link above (http://www.virginiawaterradio.org/p/index.html).

Following are links to some episodes with connections to water-related or land-use infrastructure.
Bridges | Episode 245 – 12/22/14
Drinking Water Week | Episode 314 – 5/2/16
Fix a Leak Week | Episode 307 – 3/14/16
Hydroelectric power | Episode 170 – 7/15/13
SERCAP (formerly Virginia Water Project) | Episode 366 – 5/1/17
Solid-waste recycling, energy, and water | Episode 240 – 11/17/14
Virginia State Parks | Episode 161 – 5/13/13; Episode 320 – 6/13/16
Water supply planning | Episode 261 – 4/13/15
Wastewater treatment plants | Episode 72 – 7/25/11

STANDARDS OF LEARNING (SOLs) FOR VIRGINIA TEACHERS

This episode may help with the following Virginia 2010 Science SOLs:

Grades K-6 Earth Resources Theme
4.9 - Va. natural resources, including watersheds, water resources, and organisms.

Grades K-6 Force, Motion, and Energy Theme
6.2 – energy sources, transformations, and uses.

Grades K-6 Living Systems Theme
6.7 - natural processes and human interactions that affect watershed systems; Va. watersheds, water bodies, and wetlands; health and safety issues; and water monitoring.

Life Science Course
LS.11 - relationships between ecosystem dynamics and human activity.

Earth Science Course
ES.6 – renewable vs. non-renewable resources (including energy resources).

The episode may also help with the following Virginia 2015 Social Studies SOLs, which become effective in the 2017-18 school year:

Virginia Studies Course
VS.10 – knowledge of government, geography, and economics in present-day Virginia.

United States History: 1865-to-Present Course
USII.8 – economic, social, and political transformation of the United States and the world after World War II.

Civics and Economics Course
CE.6 – government at the national level.
CE.7 – government at the state level.
CE.8 – government at the local level.
CE.10 – public policy at local, state, and national levels.

World Geography Course
WG.2 - how selected physical and ecological processes shape the Earth’s surface, including climate, weather, and how humans influence their environment and are influenced by it.
WG.4 - types and significance of natural, human, and capital resources.
WG.18 - cooperation among political jurisdictions to solve problems and settle disputes.

Government Course
GOVT.7 – national government organization and powers.
GOVT.8 – state and local government organization and powers.
GOVT.9 – public policy process at local, state, and national levels.
GOVT.15 – role of government in Va. and U.S. economies, including examining environmental issues and property rights.

Virginia’s SOLs are available from the Virginia Department of Education, online at http://www.doe.virginia.gov/testing/.