Monday, September 16, 2019

Episode 490 (9-16-19): A Duck Trio’s Unusual Visit to Virginia Tech

Click to listen to episode (4:31)

Sections below are the following:
Transcript of Audio
Audio Notes and Acknowledgments
Images
Sources
Related Water Radio Episodes
For Virginia Teachers (Relevant SOLs, etc.).


Unless otherwise noted, all Web addresses mentioned were functional as of 9-13-19.

TRANSCRIPT OF AUDIO

From the Cumberland Gap to the Atlantic Ocean, this is Virginia Water Radio for the week of September 16, 2019.

SOUNDS – ~13 sec – At the Va. Tech Duck Pond on 9-11-19, 3:30 p.m.

That’s a sample of the sounds of people and birds at the Virginia Tech Duck Pond in Blacksburg on a typical September afternoon.  In September 2019, however, something not typical at all happened at that popular aquatic location, when a trio of feathered visitors made an unusual drop-in on Virginia.  Have a listen for about 10 seconds to a recording of this species’ call, and see if you can guess the name of this bird.  And here’s a hint: whistle while you work on this, and you may end up feeling ducky.

SOUNDS - ~11 sec

If you guessed a whistling duck, you’re right!  More specifically, that was the sound of the Black-bellied Whistling Duck, one of two North American whistling duck species, which are noted for their whistle-like call, long goose-like legs, and similar appearance of both sexes.  The Black-bellied Whistling Duck is distinctive for its red and blue bill, reddish-pink feet, and tree-perching habit.

On September 10 and 11, 2019, the sighting of three Black-bellied Whistling Ducks generated excitement and serious attention from birders in Blacksburg, because the species is rarely seen in Virginia.  Its normal range is primarily in Mexico, Central America, Texas, Arizona, and Florida, although scientists have noted an expansion of the range northward, such as in the lower Mississippi Valley and along the coasts of Georgia and South Carolina.  Observations beyond this normal range—including ones in Virginia—have been documented by the e-Bird program of the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and the National Audubon Society.  Observations of birds beyond their normal range are referred to as “bird vagrancy.”  According to Audubon, causes of bird vagrancy can be some flaw in individual birds’ navigational capacity, being transported on ships, and being blown off course by weather systems.  In the recent Blacksburg case, the timing led to local birder speculation about the possible role of Hurricane Dorian the previous week.

Whatever the cause, the brief visit of Black-bellied Whistling Ducks in southwestern Virginia was a bird-watchers’ bonanza and a sign of the surprises that nature can spring.

Thanks to Lang Elliott for permission to use the whistling duck sounds, from the Stokes Field Guide to Bird Songs.  We close with some music in tribute to wildlife and its surprises; here’s part of “To the Wild,” by the Harrisonburg, Va.-based band, The Steel Wheels.

MUSIC - ~ 25 sec – mostly instrumental

SHIP’S BELL

Virginia Water Radio is produced by the Virginia Water Resources Research Center, part of Virginia Tech’s College of Natural Resources and Environment.  For more Virginia water sounds, music, or information, visit us online at virginiawaterradio.org, or call the Water Center at (540) 231-5624.  Thanks to Stewart Scales for his banjo version of Cripple Creek to open and close this show.  In Blacksburg, I’m Alan Raflo, thanking you for listening, and wishing you health, wisdom, and good water.

AUDIO NOTES AND ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

Thanks to Stephen Schoenholtz and Mark Ford for their help with information in this episode.  Thanks to Gloria Schoenholtz for use of her photos of Black-bellied Whistling Ducks.

“To the Wild,” by The Steel Wheels, is from the 2017 album “Wild As We Came Here,” used with permission.  This song was also included in Virginia Water Radio Episode 426, 6-25-18.  More information about The Steel Wheels is available online at https://www.thesteelwheels.com/ and at https://www.facebook.com/pg/thesteelwheels/about/?ref=page_internal.

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.

IMAGES



Two photos above: Two shots of Black-bellied Whistling Ducks (Dendrocygna autumnalis) at the Virginia Tech Duck Pond in Blacksburg, September 10, 2019.  Photos by Gloria Schoenholtz, used with permission.


Black-bellied Whistling Duck in Texas, July 2007.  Photo by Robert Pos, made available for public use by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's National Digital Library, online at http://digitalmedia.fws.gov, accessed 9-13-19.  URL for the specific image is https://digitalmedia.fws.gov/digital/collection/natdiglib/id/14018/rec/1.

SOURCES

Used for Audio

American Birding Association, “ABA Blog,” online at http://blog.aba.org/.  Entries include various “Rare Bird Alerts,” such as for September 13, 2019, online at http://blog.aba.org/2019/09/rare-bird-alert-september-13-2019.html.

Shannon Brennan, For Love of Nature: Rare sightings set bird watchers a-flutter, 8/14/19, published by Lynchburg News & Advance.

Cornell Lab of Ornithology, “All About Birds,” online at https://www.allaboutbirds.org/.  The Black-bellied Whistling Duck entry is online at https://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/Black-bellied_Whistling-Duck.

Cornell University Lab of Ornithology and American Ornithologists’ Union, “Birds of North America Online,” online at http://bna.birds.cornell.edu/bna (subscription required).  The Black-bellied Whistling Duck entry is online at https://birdsna.org/Species-Account/bna/species/bbwduc/introduction.

Cornell Lab of Ornithology National Audubon Society, “e-Bird,” online at https://ebird.org/home.  The Black-bellied Whistling Duck entry is online at https://ebird.org/species/bbwduc/.  See also the “Status and Trends” page, online at https://ebird.org/science/status-and-trends.

Kenn Kaufman, “The Curious Case of the Itinerant Fulvous Whistling-Duck,” 10/18/16, published by the National Aududon Society, online at https://www.audubon.org/news/the-curious-case-itinerant-fulvous-whistling-duck.

National Audubon Society, “Bird Vagrancy,” online at http://www.audubonguides.com/learn/bird-vagrancy.html.

National Audubon Society, “Guide to North American Birds/Black-bellied Whistling Duck,” online at https://www.audubon.org/field-guide/bird/black-bellied-whistling-duck.

Chandler S. Robbins et al., A Guide to Field Identification of Birds of North America, St. Martin’s Press, New York, 2001.

Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, “Fish and Wildlife Information Service,” online at https://vafwis.dgif.virginia.gov/fwis/.  There was no entry for the Black-bellied Whistling Duck, as of 9-13-19; the entry for the Fulvous Whistling Duck is online at https://vafwis.dgif.virginia.gov/fwis/booklet.html?&bova=040050&Menu=_.Taxonomy&version=18152.

For More Information about Birds in Virginia and Elsewhere

Cornell University Lab of Ornithology, “Merlin Photo ID.”  This application for mobile devices allows users to submit a bird photograph to get identification of the bird. Information is available online at http://merlin.allaboutbirds.org/.

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

Stan Tekiela, Birds of Virginia Field Guide, Adventure Publications, Inc., Cambridge, Minn., 2002; and Nature Smart Web site, online at http://www.naturesmart.com/.

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, online 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.

Following are links to other episodes on ducks.

Episode 136, 11-12-12 – on ducks generally.
Episode 197, 1-20-14 – on Canvasback.
Episode 303, 2-15-16 – on Common Goldeneye.
Episode 398, 12-11-17 on teal (two species).
Episode 472, 5-13-19 –on Mallard.

FOR VIRGINIA TEACHERS – RELATED STANDARDS OF LEARNING (SOLs) AND OTHER INFORMATION

The episode—the audio, extra information, or sources—may help with the following Virginia Standards of Learning (SOLs).

2013 Music SOLs

SOLs at various grade levels that call for “examining the relationship of music to the other fine arts and other fields of knowledge.”

2010 Science SOLs

Grades K-6 Earth Patterns, Cycles, and Change Theme
2.7 – Weather and seasonal changes affecting plants and animals.

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

Grades K-6 Life Processes Theme
3.4 – behavioral and physiological adaptations.

Grades K-6 Living Systems Theme
2.5 – living things as part of a system, including habitats.

Life Science Course
LS.4 – organisms’ classification based on features.
LS.10 – changes over time in ecosystems, communities, and populations, and factors affecting those changes, including climate changes and catastrophic disturbances.

Biology Course
BIO.1 – current applications to reinforce science concepts.
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.

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

Following are links to Water Radio episodes (various topics) designed especially for certain K-12 grade levels.

Episode 250, 1-26-15 – on boiling, for kindergarten through 3rd grade.
Episode 255, 3-2-15 – on density, for 5th and 6th grade.
Episode 282, 9-21-15 – on living vs. non-living, for kindergarten.
Episode 309, 3-28-16 – on temperature regulation in animals, for kindergarten through 12th grade.
Episode 333, 9-12-16 – on dissolved gases, especially dissolved oxygen in aquatic habitats, for 5th grade.
Episode 403, 1-15-18 – on freezing and ice, for kindergarten through 3rd grade.
Episode 404, 1-22-18 – on ice on ponds and lakes, for 4th through 8th grade.
Episode 406, 2-5-18 – on ice on rivers, for middle school.
Episode 407, 2-12-18 – on snow chemistry and physics, for high school.
Episode 483, 7-29-19 – on buoyancy and drag, for middle school and high school.

Monday, September 9, 2019

Episode 489 (9-9-19): Revisiting Storm Surge After Hurricane Dorian

Click to listen to episode (5:13)

Sections below are the following:
Transcript of Audio
Audio Notes and Acknowledgments
Images
Sources
Related Water Radio Episodes
For Virginia Teachers (Relevant SOLs, etc.).


Unless otherwise noted, all Web addresses mentioned were functional as of 9-6-19.

TRANSCRIPT OF AUDIO

From the Cumberland Gap to the Atlantic Ocean, this is Virginia Water Radio for the week of September 9, 2019.

MUSIC and SOUND – ~14 sec – “Storm surge is a dangerous event during a hurricane, where furious winds are driving deadly flows of water from our seas to our shores.”

That’s a stark message from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, or NOAA, about storm surge.  NOAA defines storm surge as “an abnormal rise of water generated by a storm, over and above the predicted astronomical tides…[and] produced by water being pushed toward the shore by the force of winds” associated with the storm.

During Hurricane Dorian in the first week of September 2019, storm surge—along with high winds and heavy rainfall— was predicted to cause some of the most severe impacts experienced along the U.S. Atlantic coast.

Dorian won’t be the last Atlantic tropical cyclone ever to threaten Virginia or other coastal areas with storm surge—it may not even be the last one this year—so that storm’s unwelcome arrival is a good time to revisit a Virginia Water Radio episode on storm surge, done previously in response to other hurricanes.  For an introduction to storm surge potential, have a listen for about 90 seconds to excerpts from, first, a 2013 National Hurricane Center [NHC] video, and second, a 2010 Virginia Department of Emergency Management [VDEM] video; the latter includes a list of Virginia areas most vulnerable to storm-surge flooding in any given storm.

SOUND/VOICE – NHC ~38 sec – “I’m Daniel Brown, hurricane specialist at NOAA’s National Hurricane Center in Miami.  Storm surge is the deadliest hazard associated with hurricanes. It’s a rise in the sea level by water being pushed to the shore by the force of the wind within the storm. But storm surge is not just a coastal event.  In some areas, the seawater can travel well inland with devastating consequences.  Storm surge is strongly influenced by a hurricane’s track, forward motion, intensity, and size.  Changes in any of these storm characteristics will significantly alter the amount of storm surge.”

SOUND/VOICE – VDEM ~47 sec – [Ellipses indicate places where portions of the original video were omitted from the audio segment used in this episode.] “Atlantic hurricanes and tropical storms can put Virginia’s coast at risk for flooding.  Near the coast, such flooding could be caused by storm surge.  It can increase the normal high tide by 15 feet or more.  Wind-driven waves on top of the storm surge can cause severe damage.  Virginia Beach, Norfolk, Chesapeake, Portsmouth, Suffolk, Hampton, Newport News, Poquoson, the Middle Peninsula, the Northern Neck, the Eastern Shore, and areas along the James River are all vulnerable to storm surge. ... If you live in an area that may flood, you should be prepared to leave immediately when officials issue an evacuation order for your community. ... Know your risk.  Be prepared before the storm hits. ...”

For more information on storm surge, visit the National Hurricane Center’s “Storm Surge Overview” Web site, online at nhc.noaa.gov/surge.

Here’s hoping for safety and recovery for people and places in the path of Dorian and any other tropical cyclone.

We close with about 25 seconds of tropical cyclone-inspired music.  Here’s “Tropical Tantrum,” composed for Virginia Water Radio by Torrin Hallett, a graduate student at Manhattan School of Music in New York.

MUSIC – ~27 sec - instrumental

SHIP’S BELL

Virginia Water Radio is produced by the Virginia Water Resources Research Center, part of Virginia Tech’s College of Natural Resources and Environment.   For more Virginia water sounds, music, or information, visit us online at virginiawaterradio.org, or call the Water Center at (540) 231-5624.  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 the latest revision of a storm-surge-focused episode timed for particular tropical cyclones.  The previous episodes are the following: Episode 337, 10-10-16, on Hurricane Matthew storm surge; Episode 134, 10-29-12, on Hurricane/Superstorm Sandy storm surge; and Episode 385, 9-11-17, on Hurricane Irma storm surge.

The sources of the audio in this episode are the following:
Excerpt 1 – “Storm Surge and the SLOSH Model/Run from the Water, Hide from the Wind” (2 min./36 sec.), 2010, accessed at https://www.nhc.noaa.gov/surge/resources.php;
Excerpt 2 – “Hurricane Preparedness Week: Storm Surge,” May 15, 2013 (1 min./25 sec.), online at You Tube at https://www.nhc.noaa.gov/surge/resources.php;
Excerpt 3 – Virginia Department of Emergency Management, “Virginia Hurricane Evacuation: Storm Surge” (2 min./48 sec.), August 26, 2010, accessed at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=83m2K2VNUUo.

“Tropical Tantrum” was composed by Torrin Hallett in May 2017.  Mr. Hallett is a 2018 graduate of Oberlin College and Conservatory in Oberlin, Ohio; as of 2019, he is a graduate student in Horn Performance at Manhattan School of Music in New York.  More information about Mr. Hallett is available online at https://www.facebook.com/torrin.hallett.  “Tropical Tantrum” was also included in the following other Virginia Water Radio episodes:
Episode 369, 5/22/17, on the upcoming Atlantic tropical storm season in 2017;
Episode 423, 6/2/18, on the upcoming Atlantic tropical storm seasons in 2018;
Episode 438, 9-17-18, on hurricane basic facts and history.
Virginia Water Radio thanks Mr. Hallett for composing this piece for Virginia Water Radio.

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.

IMAGES


Satellite image of Hurricane Dorian on 9/6/19, 9:06 a.m. EDT.  Image accessed online at https://cdn.star.nesdis.noaa.gov/GOES16/ABI/CONUS/02/1250x750.jpg, on 9/6/19, 9:30 a.m.


Map of Hurricane Dorian warnings cone as of 9/6/16, 8 a.m. EDT, from the National Hurricane Center.  Image accessed online at https://www.nhc.noaa.gov/refresh/graphics_at5+shtml/091553.shtml?cone#contents, on 9/6/19, 9:45 a.m.


Map of storm surge watches and warnings area for Hurricane Dorian, issued on 9/6/19, 8 a.m. EDT, by the National Hurricane Center. Image accessed online at https://www.nhc.noaa.gov/refresh/graphics_at5+shtml/211226.shtml?wsurge#contents, on 9/6/19, 9 a.m.  The online image includes the following “Product description”: “This graphic displays areas that are under a storm surge watch/warning.  A storm surge warning indicates there is a danger of life-threatening inundation from rising water moving inland from the shoreline somewhere within the specified area, generally within 36 hours.  A storm surge watch indicates that life-threatening inundation is possible somewhere within the specified area, generally within 48 hours.  All persons, regardless of whether or not they are in the highlighted areas shown in the graphic, should promptly follow evacuation orders and other instructions from local officials.”


Wind-speed probabilities map for Hurricane Dorian as of 9/6/19, 2 a.m. EDT, issued by the National Hurricane Center. Image accessed online at https://www.nhc.noaa.gov/refresh/graphics_at5+shtml/091553.shtml?cone#contents on 9/6/19, 9:45 a.m.

SOURCES

Used for Audio

Jason Samenow and Andrew Freeman, Dorian slams N.C. Outer Banks with 95 mph winds, charges toward southeast Va., southeast New England, in The Washington Post, 9/6/19.

National Hurricane Center, Public Advisory 52a on Hurricane Dorian, 8 a.m. EDT on 9/6/19, accessed at https://www.nhc.noaa.gov/archive/2019/DORIAN.shtml,

National Hurricane Center, “Audio Briefing for 9/6/19, 9:04 a.m. EDT, accessed online at https://www.nhc.noaa.gov/audio/; the specific URL for this podcast was https://www.nhc.noaa.gov/audio/201909061304.mp3.

National Hurricane Center, “Storm Surge Overview,” online at https://www.nhc.noaa.gov/surge/. Among other items, this page includes an explanation of the factors that lead to storm surge, photographs and graphics, and two short videos.  Information on storm-surge potential and probabilities are also part of National Hurricane Center updates and advisories on any tropical storm.

National Hurricane Center, “Storm Surge Resources,” online at http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/surge/resources.php.  This site includes several videos, including the ones excerpted for this episode.

National Weather Service/Wakefield, Va. Forecast Office, “Storm Surge Warning,” 9/6/19 at 5:06 a.m. EDT, online at https://forecast.weather.gov/wwamap/wwatxtget.php?cwa=akq&wwa=storm%20surge%20warning, accessed on 9/6/19 at 11 a.m.

The Weather Channel, Hurricane Dorian Battering South Carolina, North Carolina With Flooding Rain, Storm Surge, High Winds, Tornadoes, 9/5/19, approx. 1 p.m. EDT.

Bo Peterson, U.S. Geological Survey deploys computer-trackable storm surge sensors in South Carolina, The Post and Courier [Charleston, S.C.], 9/8/17.

PBS NewsHour, “Nearly 2 million warned to flee destructive Hurricane Matthew in the U.S.,” 10/6/16, online at http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/nearly-2-million-warned-flee-destructive-hurricane-matthew-u-s/.  The segment includes an interview with then-Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Director Craig Fugate in which he discussed the dangers of storm surge flooding along coastlines and inland.

Virginia Department of Emergency Management storm surge items, online at https://www.vaemergency.gov/ready-virginia-newsletter-articles-june2014/.

For More Information about Preparedness for Hurricanes and Other Tropical Cyclones

American Red Cross, “Hurricane Safety,” online at http://www.redcross.org/prepare/disaster/hurricane.

Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), “Hurricanes,” online at http://www.ready.gov/hurricanes.

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA)/Climate Prediction Center, “Atlantic Hurricane Outlook and Summary Archive,” http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/outlooks/hurricane-archive.shtml.

Virginia Department of Emergency Management, “Hurricanes,” online at https://www.vaemergency.gov/threats/hurricanes/.

Virginia Department of Emergency Management, “Know Your Zone,” online at http://www.vaemergency.gov/hurricane-evacuation-zone-lookup/.  This site allows citizens to determine whether or not they are in a zone most at risk from an approaching tropical cyclone, in order better to respond when emergency managers may be calling for evacuations or other actions.

Virginia Department of Emergency Management, “Virginia Hurricane Evacuation Guide,” online (as a PDF) at http://www.virginiadot.org/travel/resources/VDEMs_Hurricane_Preparedness_Evacuation_Guide.pdf.

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 “Weather” subject category.

Following are links to previous episodes on severe weather and its impacts.

Floods
Episode 272, 6-29-15 (Madison County in 1995).
Episode 328, 8-8-16 (flash flooding in general).
Episode 442, 10-15-18, (historic-record water level marker dedication at New River).
Episode 486, 8-19-19 (Nelson County in 1969).

Storm surge
Episode 134, 10-29-12 (from Superstorm Sandy).
Episode 337, 10-10-16 (from Hurricane Matthew).
Episode 385, 9-11-17 (from Hurricane Irma).

Tornadoes
Episode 342, 11-14-16 (research via virtual reality).
Episode 463, 3-11-19 (preparedness and annual statewide drill)

Tropical Cyclones (including hurricanes and tropical storms)
Episode 163, 5-27-13 (annual season-preview episode).
Episode 215, 5-26-14 (annual season-preview episode).
Episode 266, 5-18-15 (annual season-preview episode).
Episode 317, 5-23-16 (annual season-preview episode).
Episode 330, 8-22-16 (mid-season outlook).
Episode 345, 12-5-16 (season-review episode).
Episode 369, 5-22-17 (annual season-preview episode).
Episode 423, 6-2-18 (annual season-preview episode).
Episode 438, 9-17-18 (basic hurricane facts and history).
Episode 474, 5-27-19 (annual season-preview episode).

FOR VIRGINIA TEACHERS – RELATED STANDARDS OF LEARNING (SOLs) AND OTHER INFORMATION

The episode—the audio, extra information, or sources—may help with the following Virginia Standards of Learning (SOLs).

2013 Music SOLs

SOLs at various grade levels that call for “examining the relationship of music to the other fine arts and other fields of knowledge.”

2010 Science SOLs

Grades K-6 Earth Patterns, Cycles, and Change Theme
3.9 – Water cycle, including sources of water, energy driving water cycle, water essential for living things, and water limitations and conservation.

Grades K-6 Interrelationships in Earth/Space Systems Theme
2.6 – identification of common storms and other weather phenomena.
4.6 – weather conditions, phenomena, and measurements.
5.6 – characteristics of the ocean environment.

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.

Grades K-6 Matter Theme
6.6 – structure and dynamics of Earth’s atmosphere.

Life Science Course
LS. 10 - changes over time in ecosystems, communities, and populations, and factors affecting those changes, including climate changes and catastrophic disturbances.

Earth Science Course
ES.10 – ocean processes, interactions, and policies affecting coastal zones.
ES.11 – origin, evolution, and dynamics of the atmosphere, including human influences on climate.
ES.12 – weather and climate.

2015 Social Studies SOLs

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 how humans influence their environment and are influenced by it.
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.

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

Following are links to Water Radio episodes (various topics) designed especially for certain K-12 grade levels.

Episode 250, 1-26-15 – on boiling, for kindergarten through 3rd grade.
Episode 255, 3-2-15 – on density, for 5th and 6th grade.
Episode 282, 9-21-15 – on living vs. non-living, for kindergarten.
Episode 309, 3-28-16 – on temperature regulation in animals, for kindergarten through 12th grade.
Episode 333, 9-12-16 – on dissolved gases, especially dissolved oxygen in aquatic habitats, for 5th grade.
Episode 403, 1-15-18 – on freezing and ice, for kindergarten through 3rd grade.
Episode 404, 1-22-18 – on ice on ponds and lakes, for 4th through 8th grade.
Episode 406, 2-5-18 – on ice on rivers, for middle school.
Episode 407, 2-12-18 – on snow chemistry and physics, for high school.
Episode 483, 7-29-19 – on buoyancy and drag, for middle school and high school.

Tuesday, September 3, 2019

Episode 488 (9-2-19): The American Oystercatcher is a Shellfishing Specialist

Click to listen to episode (4:32)

Sections below are the following:
Transcript of Audio
Audio Notes and Acknowledgments
Images
Extra Information
Sources
Related Water Radio Episodes
For Virginia Teachers (Relevant SOLs, etc.).

Unless otherwise noted, all Web addresses mentioned were functional as of 8-30-19.

TRANSCRIPT OF AUDIO


From the Cumberland Gap to the Atlantic Ocean, this is Virginia Water Radio for the week of September 9, 2019.

MUSIC – ~6 sec – instrumental

This week, that excerpt of “The Oystermen’s Ball,” by Bob Michel, opens an episode on a bird known for its association with oysters and other shellfish.  Have a listen for about 10 seconds to the following mystery sound, and see if you can guess this bird.  And here’s a hint: catch a key word in the title of the music you just heard.

SOUNDS - ~10 sec

If you guessed an oystercatcher, you’re right!  You heard the sound of an American Oystercatcher, one of two oystercatcher species in North America, out of several species found worldwide.  The American Oystercatcher is found exclusively near saltwater along the United States’ mid-Atlantic coastline, along the Gulf of Mexico coastline, and along the Pacific coastline of western Mexico and Central America.

This large bird inhabits beaches, mud flats, sand dunes, salt marshes, and dredge-spoil islands.  There, in falling or low tides, it finds the shellfish—particularly oysters, clams, and mussels, collectively known as bivalve mollusks—on which oystercatchers are adapted to feed.  An oystercatcher can use its distinctive, long, red-orange bill in various ways to get prey, including probing in the sand; stabbing the bill quickly inside a partially opened bivalve to cut the muscle that closes the two shell valves; and using the bill as a hammer to break open a closed shell.  According to the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, though, oystercatchers sometimes get caught by a bivalve closing its shell on the bird’s bill, threatening drowning the bird when high tide returns.

Oystercatchers also have a special courting ritual, known as “piping.”  The behavior typically involves two birds running beside one another, bobbing their heads up and down, and making loud calls.  The birds often also take flight in tandem, and that may attract other pairs of birds into what is sometimes called a piping “tournament” or “ceremony.”

The American Oystercatcher is distinctive in its colors, courtship, and prey-catching.  Here’s a 19th-Century take on that distinctiveness, by John James Audubon: “Shy, vigilant, and ever alert, the Oyster-Catcher walks with a certain appearance of dignity, greatly enhanced by its handsome plumage and remarkable bill.”

Thanks to Lang Elliott for permission to use this week’s sounds, from the Stokes Field Guide to Bird Songs.  Thanks also to Bob Michel for permission to use this week’s music, and we close with about 20 more seconds of “The Oystermen’s Ball.”

MUSIC – ~20 sec - instrumental

SHIP’S BELL

Virginia Water Radio is produced by the Virginia Water Resources Research Center, part of Virginia Tech’s College of Natural Resources and Environment. For more Virginia water sounds, music, or information, visit us online at virginiawaterradio.org, or call the Water Center at (540) 231-5624. Thanks to Stewart Scales for his banjo version of Cripple Creek to open and close this show. In Blacksburg, I’m Alan Raflo, thanking you for listening, and wishing you health, wisdom, and good water.

AUDIO NOTES AND ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

The American Oystercatcher sounds were 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/.

“The Oystermen’s Ball," from the 2004 album of the same name, is copyright by Bob Michel, used with permission.  More information on Mr. Michel's music is available online at http://www.bobmichel.com/.  Excerpts from this song were also used in two Virginia Water Radio episodes on oysters in the Chesapeake Bay: Episode 279, 8/24/15 and Episode 280, 9/7/15.

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.

IMAGES

American Oystercatcher at Egmont Key National Wildlife Refuge in Florida. Photo by Keith Ramos, made available for public use public use by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's National Digital Library, online at http://digitalmedia.fws.gov, accessed 8-30-19. The specific URL for the image is https://digitalmedia.fws.gov/digital/collection/natdiglib/id/11411/rec/24.


American Oyster-catcher painting by John James Audubon in Birds of America, plate CCXXIII (223), as reprinted in 1985 by Abbeville Press, New York.  Information about Birds of America is available from the National Audubon Society, online at http://www.audubon.org/birds-of-america; the Pied Oyster-catcher entry is online at https://www.audubon.org/birds-of-america/pied-oyster-catcher.  Photo above taken August 31, 2019, 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.

EXTRA INFORMATION ABOUT THE AMERICAN OYSTERCATCHER

The scientific name of the American Oystercatcher is Haematopus palliatus.

Here are some points about the American Oystercatcher, excerpted from the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, “Fish and Wildlife Information Service/Killdeer,” online at https://vafwis.dgif.virginia.gov/fwis/booklet.html?&bova=040114&Menu=_.Taxonomy&version=18138.

Occurrence in Virginia

“Common to abundant permanent resident on immediate coast of Eastern Shore; locally common in Tangier area of Chesapeake Bay.   Uncommon to rare transient in lower Chesapeake Bay. Only one record in Piedmont…; no records in Mountains and Valleys.… Breeding pairs observed on Virginia barrier islands: Assateague, Assawoman, Cedar Island, Cobb, Dawson Shoals, Fishermans, Hog, Little Cobb, Metompkin, Myrtle, Parramore, Rogue, Sandy, Ship Shoal, Smith, Wreck. Peak counts occur along the coast during summer.”

Physical Description

“The oystercatcher is a large, pied shorebird, 17-21 inches….   It has back and wing coverts of olive brown; upper tail coverts and base of tail of dusky brown; head, neck, and upper breast glossy black; lower breast and abdomen pure white. Its bill and iris are bright red; bill is long, laterally compressed and adapted to opening shellfish. Legs and feet are pale pink…  A bold white wing patch is visible during flight.”

Nesting Habitat and Behavior

“Pairs will nest on same territory as previous year.  Females arrive on territory up to 3 weeks before males, from last week of February to first week of March.  Pair formation will begin as soon as both sexes are on territory.  The breeding period extends from April to August. …

“Nest building, or scraping, begins several weeks before laying as a part of the courtship.  Both sexes participate in nest scraping though males typically do most of the work.  [Scrapes} are often decorated with pieces of shell. … This species is typically a solitary nester (but will roost and flock together).

“Nest sites are selected non-randomly with preferences for areas with more substrate, less vegetation, farther distance from water, and higher elevation.  In Virginia, nests have be found in dunes, salt marsh, dredge spoil, with spots often chosen on the edges of eroding high salt marsh on shell piles or rakes.  Typical substrate is soft on the surface with a firm underlying layer.

“Courtship behavior often described as ‘piping.’”

Feeding

“Foraging takes place along mudflats and receding shore.  Oystercatchers stab prey through abductor muscle and pry open with bill.  This species will stab crabs and probe for worms, besides typical shellfish food items.  Foraging occurs well beyond limits of territory.”

Predators

“Egg loss is high due to predation.  On Fisherman Island predated primarily by fish crows (Corvus ossifragus); only one in ten young fledged annually in four years of observation.  Other predators include mink, red fox, skunk, domestic dog, cat, rat, American crow, herring gull, greater black-backed gull, peregrine falcon, raccoon, and snowy owl.  Low productivity seems the rule in most studies.  Annual adult survival rate very high (up to 90%).”

SOURCES

Used for Audio

American Oystercatcher Working Group, online at http://amoywg.org/.  For information on the species’ courtship behavior, known as “piping,” see Alex Wilke, “American Oystercatcher Behavior,” undated, online at http://amoywg.org/american-oystercatcher/behavior/.

John James Audubon, Birds of America, National Audubon Society, online at http://www.audubon.org/birds-of-america.  The quotation in the audio was taken from Audubon’s commentary for “The American Oyster-catcher, Haematopus palliatus, Plate CCXXIII.”

Audubon Guide to North American Birds, “American Oystercatcher,” online at https://www.audubon.org/field-guide/bird/american-oystercatcher.

Cornell Lab of Ornithology, “All About Birds,” online at https://www.allaboutbirds.org/.  The American Oystercatcher entry is online at https://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/American_Oystercatcher.

Cornell University Lab of Ornithology and American Ornithologists’ Union, “Birds of North America Online,” online at http://bna.birds.cornell.edu/bna (subscription required).  The American Oystercatcher entry is online at https://birdsna.org/Species-Account/bna/species/ameoys/introduction/.

Encyclopedia Britannica, “Oystercatcher,” online at https://www.britannica.com/animal/oystercatcher.

Alice Jane Lippson and Robert L. Lippson, Life in the Chesapeake Bay, Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, Md. (2006).  See page 89.

New Hampshire PBS, “Wildlife Journal Junior/Haematopodidae,” online at https://nhpbs.org/wild/Haematopodidae.asp.

Chandler S. Robbins et al., A Guide to Field Identification of Birds of North America, St. Martin’s Press, New York, 2001.

Stan Tekiela, Birds of Virginia Field Guide, Adventure Publications, Inc., Cambridge, Minn., 2002.

Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, “Fish and Wildlife Information Service/American Oystercatcher,” online at https://vafwis.dgif.virginia.gov/fwis/booklet.html?&bova=040114&Menu=_.Taxonomy&version=18138.

For More Information about Birds in Virginia and Elsewhere

Cornell University Lab of Ornithology, “Merlin Photo ID.”  This application for mobile devices allows users to submit a bird photograph to get identification of the bird. Information is available online at http://merlin.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.

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, online 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.

Following are links to some other episodes on shorebirds.

Episode 68, 6-13-11 — on Royal Tern.
Episode 79, 9-12-11 — on Piping Plover.
Episode 213, 5-12-14 — on Black Skimmer.
Episode 315, 5-9-16 — on sandpipers generally.
Episode 456, 1-21-19 —on pelicans.

Following are links to two previous episodes on oysters.

Episode 279, 8-24-15.
Episode 280, 9-7-15.

FOR VIRGINIA TEACHERS – RELATED STANDARDS OF LEARNING (SOLs) AND OTHER INFORMATION

The episode—the audio, extra information, or sources—may help with the following Virginia Standards of Learning (SOLs).

2013 Music SOLs

SOLs at various grade levels that call for “examining the relationship of music to the other fine arts and other fields of knowledge.”

2010 Science SOLs

Grades K-6 Earth Resources Theme
4.9 – Va. natural resources, including watersheds, water resources, and organisms.
6.9 – public policy decisions related to the environment (including resource management and conservation, land use decisions, hazard mitigation, cost/benefit assessments).

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.
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.4 – organisms’ classification based on features.
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.

Biology Course
BIO.1 – current applications to reinforce science concepts.
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.

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

Following are links to Water Radio episodes (various topics) designed especially for certain K-12 grade levels.

Episode 250, 1-26-15 – on boiling, for kindergarten through 3rd grade.
Episode 255, 3-2-15 – on density, for 5th and 6th grade.
Episode 282, 9-21-15 – on living vs. non-living, for kindergarten.
Episode 309, 3-28-16 – on temperature regulation in animals, for kindergarten through 12th grade.
Episode 333, 9-12-16 – on dissolved gases, especially dissolved oxygen in aquatic habitats, for 5th grade.
Episode 403, 1-15-18 – on freezing and ice, for kindergarten through 3rd grade.
Episode 404, 1-22-18 – on ice on ponds and lakes, for 4th through 8th grade.
Episode 406, 2-5-18 – on ice on rivers, for middle school.
Episode 407, 2-12-18 – on snow chemistry and physics, for high school.
Episode 483, 7-29-19 – on buoyancy and drag, for middle school and high school.

Monday, August 26, 2019

Episode 487 (8-26-19): Calling All Virginia Milkweeds

Click to listen to episode (4:26)

Sections below are the following:
Transcript of Audio
Audio Notes and Acknowledgments
Images
Extra Information
Sources
Related Water Radio Episodes
For Virginia Teachers (Relevant SOLs, etc.).


Unless otherwise noted, all Web addresses mentioned were functional as of 8-23-19.

TRANSCRIPT OF AUDIO

From the Cumberland Gap to the Atlantic Ocean, this is Virginia Water Radio for the week of August 26, 2019.

SOUND – ~ 6 sec

This week, the summertime sounds of Green Frogs and cicadas from a Virginia wetland and meadow set the stage for exploring some silent organisms found in those areas: a group of plants that are part of various natural habitats in the Commonwealth, while also supporting insects that migrate hundreds or thousands of miles annually.  Have a listen for about 20 seconds to several guest voices calling out some common names in this plant group, and see if you know the group.  And here’s a hint: combine the words for a dairy cow’s product and a plant considered out of place.

VOICES - ~20 sec – “Butterfly Weed. Clasping. Common. Few-flower. Four-leaf. Green Comet. Long-leaf. Purple. Red. Swamp. Tall. White. Whorled.”

If you guessed milkweeds, you’re right!  Those were the common names of 13 milkweed species native to Virginia, part of over 100 species native to North America or Central America.  Most species in Virginia are found in meadows, dry forests, pastures, and other relatively dry habitats across the Commonwealth.  But five Virginia species are associated with streamside or wetland habitats; these include the Few-flower, Long-leaf, Purple, Red, and Swamp milkweeds.

Named for their milky sap, milkweeds typically provide large amounts of nectar that attract many insects; one subfamily of butterflies, for example, is commonly known as the milkweed butterflies.  On the other hand, milkweeds contain chemicals that are toxic to some insects and other animals. Both of these aspects of milkweeds contribute to the plants’ well-known association with Monarch Butterflies.  Monarchs—which are noted for their long annual migrations to and from Mexico—depend on various milkweed species as habitat and food for their larvae.  The Monarch also benefits from the toxins in the milkweeds, which render the butterflies distasteful to predators.

In the human realm, some milkweeds have long been used as herbal medicine; for example, both Common Milkweed and Butterfly-weed have been used for lung diseases. That history is reflected in the scientific name of the milkweed genus, Asclepias, which is derived from the name Asklepios, the Greek god of medicine.

Thanks to several Blacksburg friends for lending their voices to this episode.  And in recognition of milkweeds’ connection to Monarchs and other butterflies, we close with part of “The Butterfly,” an adaptation of a traditional Irish tune, by Timothy Seaman of Williamsburg.

MUSIC - ~17 sec - Instrumental

SHIP’S BELL

Virginia Water Radio is produced by the Virginia Water Resources Research Center, part of Virginia Tech’s College of Natural Resources and Environment.  For more Virginia water sounds, music, or information, visit us online at virginiawaterradio.org, or call the Water Center at (540) 231-5624.  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

Thanks to neighbors in Blacksburg, Virginia, for recording milkweed common names on August 7, 2019.

The Green Frog and cicada sounds were recorded on August 15, 2015, at a wetland near Toms Creek at Heritage Park in Blacksburg, Va.

“The Butterfly,” from the 2004 CD “Virginia Wildlife,” is copyright by Timothy Seaman and Pine Wind Music, used with permission.  More information about Timothy Seaman is available online at http://www.timothyseaman.com/.  The “Virginia Wildlife” CD was a collaboration between Mr. Seaman and the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries to celebrate Virginia’s natural resources and support non-game wildlife programs.

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.

IMAGES

Common Milkweed near Toms Creek in Heritage Park, Blacksburg, Va., July 7, 2019.


Swamp Milkweed in a wetland along the Huckleberry Trail in Montgomery County, Va., July 13, 2019.



Two images above: Monarch Butterfly migration patterns in fall (upper) and spring/summer (lower). Images from the U.S. Forest Service; maps from the U.S. Geological Survey National Atlas; accessed online at https://www.fs.fed.us/wildflowers/pollinators/Monarch_Butterfly/migration/index.shtml.

EXTRA INFORMATION ABOUT MILKWEEDS IN VIRGINIA

Following are the common and scientific names and typical habitat of species of milkweed native to Virginia and called out in this episode.  All of these are species in the genus Asclepias (abbreviated as “A” in the list below).  The habitat information is quoted from the Alan S. Weakley et al., Flora of Virginia, 2012, (see Sources section below for full details on that reference).

Butterfly Weed, A. tuberosa – Dry woodlands, clearings, fields, pastures, and roadsides. Common throughout [Virginia].”
Clasping Milkweed, A. amplexicaulis – “Dry acidic forests, sandy woodlands, clearings, old fields, and roadsides. Frequent in the Coastal Plain and Piedmont; infrequent in the mountains.”
Common Milkweed, A. syriaca – “Fields, pastures, roadsides, and other open, disturbed habitats. Common throughout [Virginia].”
Few-flower Milkweed, A. lanceolata – “Freshwater to oligohaline [brackish, or slightly salty] tidal marshes; most frequent in wind-tidal marshes of ….far southeastern Virginia. Infrequent in the Coastal Plain.” [For information on wind-tidal marshes, see Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation, “The Natural Communities of Virginia/Wind-Tidal Oligohaline Marshes,” online at https://www.dcr.virginia.gov/natural-heritage/natural-communities/ncea3.]
Four-leaf Milkweed, A. quadrifolia – “Mesic [moderately moist] to dry forests and woodlands. Frequent on various substrates in the mountains; infrequent and more restricted to base-rich soils in the Piedmont.”
Green [or Green Comet] Milkweed, A. viridiflora – Dry soil of fields, pastures, and roadsides; occasionally in dry rocky woodlands and barrens…. Frequent in the Piedmont and low-elevation mountain valleys; rare elsewhere.”
Long-leaf Milkweed, A. longifolia – “Bogs and sphagnous power-line swales. Rare in the southern Coastal Plain and adjacent outer Piedmont, south of the James River.”
Purple Milkweed, A. purpurascens – “Openings in floodplain forests, wet meadows and clearings, stream banks, upland depression swamps, and clay flatwoods… Infrequent to rare throughout [Virginia].”
Red Milkweed, A. rubra – “Bogs, sphagnous power-line swales, and seeps. Rare in the Coastal Plain and outer Piedmont.”
Swamp Milkweed, A. incarnata – “River and stream shores, wet fields, and meadows. Frequent in the mountains; rare in the Piedmont and Coastal Plain.”
Tall Milkweed, A. exaltata – “Mesic to dry forests, clearings, and meadows; most common in middle to higher elevations. Common in the mountains; rare in the inner Piedmont.”
White Milkweed, A. variegata – Mesic to…dry, upland forests, borders, clearings, and old fields. Frequent in the Coastal Plain and Piedmont; infrequent in mountains.”
Whorled Milkweed, A. verticillata – “Dry woodlands, barrens, clearings, and rock outcrops… Infrequent in the mountains and Piedmont; rare in the Coastal Plain.”

SOURCES

Used for Audio

Biota of North American Program (BONAP), online at http://bonap.net/Napa/TaxonMaps/Genus/County/Asclepias.

Jason Bittel, “Monarch Butterflies Migrate 3,000 Miles—Here's How,” National Geographic, 10/17/17, online at https://www.nationalgeographic.com/news/2017/10/monarch-butterfly-migration/.

Butterflies and Moths of North America, “Family Nymphalidae (Brush-footed Butterflies),” online at https://www.butterfliesandmoths.org/taxonomy/Nymphalidae.  [This family includes 11 subfamilies, one of which is Danainae (Milkweed Butterflies); this site lists 22 species in that subfamily, including the Monarch.]

Rebecca Chandler, “Monarch Lookalikes and How to Tell the Difference,” Save Our Monarchs, 4/17/18, online at https://www.saveourmonarchs.org/blog/monarch-lookalikes-and-how-to-tell-the-difference.

Encyclopedia Britannica, “Asclepiadoideae Plant Subfamily,” online at https://www.britannica.com/plant/Asclepiadoideae; and “Milkweed Butterfly,” online at https://www.britannica.com/animal/milkweed-butterfly.

Alan S. Weakley et al., Flora of Virginia, Foundation of the Flora of Virginia Project, Inc., Richmond, Va., 2012.

Grow Milkweed Plants, “Milkweeds,” online at https://www.growmilkweedplants.com/milkweeds.html.

Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, “Native Plants Database/Asclepias,” online at https://www.wildflower.org/plants/search.php?search_ield=Asclepias&family=Acanthaceae&newsearch=true&demo=.

Marion Lois Lobstein, “There and Back Again: A Short Taxonomic History of Milkweed,” Virginia Native Plant Society, undated, online at https://vnps.org/princewilliamwildflowersociety/botanizing-with-marion/there-and-back-again-a-short-taxonomic-history-of-milkweed/.

George Lohmiller and Becky Lohmiller, “Common Milkweed: Uses and Natural Remedies,” The Old Farmer’s Almanac, 7/8/19, online at https://www.almanac.com/content/common-milkweed-uses-and-natural-remedies.

Monarch Watch, online at https://monarchwatch.org/bring-back-the-monarchs/milkweed/.

Monarch Joint Venture, online at https://monarchjointventure.org/get-involved/create-habitat-for-monarchs.

Monarch Joint Venture and U.S. Forest Service, “Plant Milkweed for Monarchs,” online (as PDF) at https://www.fs.fed.us/wildflowers/pollinators/Monarch_Butterfly/documents/MilkweedInfoSheet.pdf.

National Wildlife Federation, “Milkweed for Monarchs,” online at https://www.nwf.org/Garden-for-Wildlife/About/Native-Plants/Milkweed.

Science Museum Brought to Life, “Asklepios,” online at http://broughttolife.sciencemuseum.org.uk/broughttolife/people/asklepios.

Virginia Watson, “Michoacan History,” undated, published by USA Today, online at https://traveltips.usatoday.com/michoacan-history-23923.html. [Michoacán de Ocampo, in west-central Mexico, is renowned as a winter location for Monarch butterflies.]

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, “Five Super Stops on Monarch Migration Trail,” 79/18, online at https://www.fws.gov/refuges/news/FiveSuperStopsMonarchMigration.html.  [The Eastern Shore of Virginia National Wildlife Refuge is one of stops discussed; information on that refuge is available online at https://www.fws.gov/refuge/eastern_shore_of_virginia/.]

U.S. Forest Service, “Monarch Butterfly Migration and Overwintering,” online at https://www.fs.fed.us/wildflowers/pollinators/Monarch_Butterfly/migration/index.shtml.

U.S. Forest Service, “Plant of the Week” series:
“Butterfly Milkweed” (Butterfly-weed), by Larry Stritch, undated, online at https://www.fs.fed.us/wildflowers/plant-of-the-week/asclepias_tuberosa.shtml;
“Common Milkweed,” by David Taylor, undated, online at https://www.fs.fed.us/wildflowers/plant-of-the-week/asclepias_syriaca.shtml;
“Green Comet Milkweed,” by David Taylor, undated, online at https://www.fs.fed.us/wildflowers/plant-of-the-week/asclepias_viridiflora.shtml;
“Purple Milkweed,” by Tania Hanline, undated, online at https://www.fs.fed.us/wildflowers/plant-of-the-week/asclepias_purpurascens.shtml;
“Swamp Milkweed,” by Forest Russell Holmes, undated, online at https://www.fs.fed.us/wildflowers/plant-of-the-week/asclepias_incarnata.shtml.

Virginia Native Plant Society/David M. Lawlor, “Imperiled Purple Milkweed at Huntley Meadows Park,” 4/10/16, online at https://vnps.org/imperiled-purple-milkweed-at-huntley-meadows-park/.

For More Information about Plants in Virginia and Elsewhere

U.S. Department of Agriculture/Natural Resources Conservation Service, “Plants Data Base,” online at https://plants.usda.gov/.

Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation/Natural Heritage Division, “Invasive Plant Species of Virginia,” online at http://www.dcr.virginia.gov/natural-heritage/invspinfo.

Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, “Fish and Wildlife Information Service/Monarch Butterfly,” online at https://vafwis.dgif.virginia.gov/fwis/booklet.html?&bova=100079&Menu=_.Taxonomy&version=18128.

Virginia Native Plant Society, online at http://vnps.org/.  This organization provides information about native species and natural plant habitats. Located at 400 Blandy Farm Lane, Unit #2, Boyce, VA 22620; (540) 837-1600.

Virginia Tech Dendrology, online at http://dendro.cnre.vt.edu/dendrology/.  This is the Web site for the dendrology course by Dr. John Seiler in Virginia Tech’s Department of Forest Resources and Environmental Conservation.  The site offers identification keys and fact sheets to trees and other woody plants throughout North America.  This site also information on VTree, a mobile-phone app for tree identification, at http://dendro.cnre.vt.edu/dendrology/vtree.htm.

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 “Insects” and “Plants” subject category.

FOR VIRGINIA TEACHERS – RELATED STANDARDS OF LEARNING (SOLs) AND OTHER INFORMATION

The episode—the audio, extra information, or sources—may help with the following Virginia Standards of Learning (SOLs).

2013 Music SOLs

SOLs at various grade levels that call for “examining the relationship of music to the other fine arts and other fields of knowledge.”

2010 English SOLs

Reading Theme
6.4 and 7.4 – meanings of unfamiliar words, including word origins and derivations.

2010 Science SOLs

Grades K-6 Earth Resources Theme
4.9 – Va. natural resources, including watersheds, water resources, and organisms.
6.9 – public policy decisions related to the environment (including resource management and conservation, land use decisions, hazard mitigation, cost/benefit assessments).

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.
4.4 – basic plant anatomy and processes.

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 ecosystems.

Life Science Course
LS.8 – community and population interactions, including food webs, niches, symbiotic relationships.
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.

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.

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

Following are links to Water Radio episodes (various topics) designed especially for certain K-12 grade levels.

Episode 250, 1-26-15 – on boiling, for kindergarten through 3rd grade.
Episode 255, 3-2-15 – on density, for 5th and 6th grade.
Episode 282, 9-21-15 – on living vs. non-living, for kindergarten.
Episode 309, 3-28-16 – on temperature regulation in animals, for kindergarten through 12th grade.
Episode 333, 9-12-16 – on dissolved gases, especially dissolved oxygen in aquatic habitats, for 5th grade.
Episode 403, 1-15-18 – on freezing and ice, for kindergarten through 3rd grade.
Episode 404, 1-22-18 – on ice on ponds and lakes, for 4th through 8th grade.
Episode 406, 2-5-18 – on ice on rivers, for middle school.
Episode 407, 2-12-18 – on snow chemistry and physics, for high school.
Episode 483, 7-29-19 – on buoyancy and drag, for middle school and high school.

Friday, August 16, 2019

Episode 486 (8-19-19): Recalling the August 1969 Camille Catastrophe in Nelson County

Click to listen to episode (4:27)

Sections below are the following:
Transcript of Audio
Audio Notes and Acknowledgments
Images
Sources
Related Water Radio Episodes
For Virginia Teachers (Relevant SOLs, etc.).


Unless otherwise noted, all Web addresses mentioned were functional as of 8-16-19.

TRANSCRIPT OF AUDIO

From the Cumberland Gap to the Atlantic Ocean, this is Virginia Water Radio for the week of August 19, 2019. This is a revised version of an episode from December 2013.

MUSIC – ~9 sec – instrumental.
This week, we feature a Virginia’s band’s music about land, water, and romance along one of the Old Dominion’s most famous geographic features.  The music also has echoes of an enormous and tragic flood event that took place 50 years ago this week.  Have listen for about 45 seconds.

MUSIC - ~ 46 sec – 0:30 to 1:12 and fade instrumental – “My mind is dark and troubled, with clouds coming low. When the bottle gets to empty, I know where to go. I take the old dirt road, beneath the scarred mountainside, and in the Rockfish River water, my loneliness subsides. The boots stomp along in perfect time; whiskey on her lips, she’s always on my mind. Of all the treasures in this world, I’ll take the nighttime, and my Blue Ridge girl.”

You’ve been listening to part of “Blue Ridge Girl,” by Chamomile and Whiskey, on the 2013 album “Wandering Boots,” from County Wide Records.  The band formed in Nelson County, a scenic and historic area whose dominant geographic influence is the Blue Ridge Mountains.  The Blue Ridge is also the place of origin for the Rockfish River, a James River tributary mentioned in the song.

Another phrase in the song—“beneath the scarred mountainside”—brings to mind the devastating and lingering effects of Hurricane Camille in 1969.  On August 19 of that year—two days after that category five hurricane’s deadly landfall along the Gulf Coast—Camille’s remnants became concentrated along the Blue Ridge in Nelson County, producing an official total of 27 inches of rain overnight in the Rockfish River basin and the adjacent Tye River basin.  The intense rains created flash floods, landslides, and flows of mud, vegetation, structures, and other materials.  The storm caused over 100 deaths in Nelson and left behind eroded slopes, altered channels, and debris that remain decades later.

Shaped by Camille’s power as well as countless other natural events and centuries of human activities, Nelson County’s Blue Ridge lands and waters continue today as primary influences on lives, livelihoods, and culture.

Thanks to Chamomile and Whiskey for permission to use this week’s music, and we close with about 25 more seconds of “Blue Ridge Girl.”

MUSIC – ~26 sec – instrumental.

SHIP’S BELL

Virginia Water Radio is produced by the Virginia Water Resources Research Center, part of Virginia Tech’s College of Natural Resources and Environment.  For more Virginia water sounds, music, or information, visit us online at virginiawaterradio.org, or call the Water Center at (540) 231-5624.  Thanks to Stewart Scales for his banjo version of Cripple Creek to open and close this show.  In Blacksburg, I’m Alan Raflo, thanking you for listening, and wishing you health, wisdom, and good water.

AUDIO NOTES AND ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

This Virginia Water Radio episode revises and replaces Episode 192, 12-16-13.

“Blue Ridge Girl” and “Wandering Boots” are copyright by Chamomile and Whiskey and by County Wide Records, used with permission of Chamomile and Whiskey.   More information about Chamomile and Whiskey is available online at http://www.chamomileandwhiskey.com/, and information about Charlottesville-based County Wide Records is available online at http://countywidemusic.worldsecuresystems.com/.

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.

IMAGES

Illustration of the path of Hurricane Camille, from the U.S. Department of Commerce/Environmental Science Services Administration, “The Virginia Floods: August 19-22, 1969,” September 1969, online (as PDF) at https://www.weather.gov/media/publications/assessments/Virginia%20Floods%20August%201969.pdf.


Landslide above Davis Creek, a tributary of the Rockfish River, near Lovingston in Nelson County, Va., resulting from remnants of Hurricane Camille in August 1969. Image from U.S. Geological Survey, “Flood of August 1969 in Virginia,” Open-file Report 70-15, 1970; online (as PDF) at https://pubs.usgs.gov/of/1970/0051/report.pdf.


Graph of daily mean stream flow, or discharge, in cubic feet per second (cfs) from August 18—August 23, 1969, at the U.S. Geological Survey gaging station on the Rockfish River near Greenfield in Nelson County, Va. Note the levels of as much as 30,000 cfs on August 20. Graph accessed at U.S. Geological Survey, National Water Information System, “USGS 02028500 ROCKFISH RIVER NEAR GREENFIELD, VA,” online at https://waterdata.usgs.gov/nwis/dv?referred_module=sw&site_no=02028500. As of August 16, 2019, the historical mean discharge for August 20 at that location is 439 cfs (based on records since 1942). For a table of daily mean flow values at the Rapidan River gage near Ruckersville, see USGS Surface Water Daily Statistics for Virginia, online at http://waterdata.usgs.gov/va/nwis/dvstat/?referred_module=sw; table of daily mean discharge for Greenfield site is online at this link.



Two photos above: Scenes from the Rockfish River in normal-flow times.  Upper photo—the Rockfish River's confluence with the James River (background), where the Virginia counties of Albemarle, Buckingham, and Nelson converge, July 2009.  Lower photo: the Rockfish River on County Route 634 in Nelson County, Va., March 3, 2018.

SOURCES

Used for Audio

Jeffrey Halverson, “Unprecedented rain: Hurricane Camille’s deadly flood in the Blue Ridge mountains,” Aug. 19, 2013, in The Washington Post, online at https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/capital-weather-gang/wp/2013/08/19/unprecedented-rain-hurricane-camilles-deadly-dlood-in-the-blue-ridge-mountains/.

Robert Hopper and Julie Still, “Assessment of the Rockfish River in Nelson County, Virginia,” Oct. 18, 2004, for the Virginia Water Resources Research Center/STEP Program.  For access to this report, please contact the Virginia Water Center at (540) 231-5624 or water@vt.edu.

Kevin Myatt, “Camille’s remnants devastated Nelson County,” Aug. 14, 2019, in The Roanoke Times, online at https://www.roanoke.com/news/virginia/weather-journal-camille-s-remnants-devastated-nelson-county/article_7a4a6f44-14eb-5efe-9443-59abe694b6e2.html.

Nelson County Government, online at http://www.nelsoncounty-va.gov.

Lisa Provence, “Flooded with memories: Nelson County 37 years after Camille,” Sep. 21, 2006, in The [Charlottesville] Hook, online at
http://www.readthehook.com/79908/cover-flooded-memories-nelson-county-37-years-after-camille.  This article includes several historical photos.

Lisa Romano, “Hurricane Camille (August 1969),” Sep. 9, 2010, in Virginia Foundation for the Humanities’ Encyclopedia Virginia, online at http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Hurricane_Camille_August_1969.

For More Information about Hurricane Camille and its Impacts

National Hurricane Center and Central Pacific Hurricane Center, “Hurricanes in History,” online at https://www.nhc.noaa.gov/outreach/history/.

National Weather Service Mobile-Pensacola, “Hurricane Camille—August 17, 1969,” August 2019, online at https://www.weather.gov/mob/camille.

Lynchburg News & Advance, “Looking back at Hurricane Camille, 50 years later, ”August 9-18, 2019.  This is a series of articles and photographs.

U.S. Department of Commerce/Environmental Science Services Administration, “The Virginia Floods: August 19-22, 1969,” September 1969, online (as PDF) at https://www.weather.gov/media/publications/assessments/Virginia%20Floods%20August%201969.pdf.

U.S. Geological Survey, “Flood of August 1969 in Virginia,” Open-file Report 70-15, 1970; online (as PDF) at https://pubs.usgs.gov/of/1970/0051/report.pdf.

Garnett P. Williams and Harold P. Guy, “Erosional and Depositional Aspects of Hurricane Camille in Virginia, 1969,” U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Professional Paper 804, 1973, online at https://pubs.er.usgs.gov/publication/pp804.

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 “Weather/Natural Disasters” subject category.

Following are links to some other episodes on flooding in Virginia.

Episode 272, 6-29-15 – on the 1995 floods in Madison County.
Episode 328, 8-8-16 – on flash flooding in general, featuring “Rain in the Valley” by the Steel Wheels.
Episode 442, 10-15-18 – on the high water marker for the New River at Radford.

FOR VIRGINIA TEACHERS – RELATED STANDARDS OF LEARNING (SOLs) AND OTHER INFORMATION

The episode—the audio, extra information, or sources—may help with the following Virginia Standards of Learning (SOLs).

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

2010 Science SOLs

Grades K-6 Earth Resources Theme 3.10 – impacts on survival of species, including effects of fire, flood, disease, and erosion on organisms.
4.9 – Va. natural resources, including watersheds, water resources, and organisms.
6.9 – public policy decisions related to the environment (including resource management and conservation, land use decisions, hazard mitigation, cost/benefit assessments).

Grades K-6 Interrelationships in Earth/Space Systems Theme
4.6 – weather conditions, phenomena, and measurements.

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.

Earth Science Course
ES.12 – weather and climate.

2015 Social Studies SOLs

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.

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

Following are links to Water Radio episodes (various topics) designed especially for certain K-12 grade levels.

Episode 250, 1-26-15 – on boiling, for kindergarten through 3rd grade.
Episode 255, 3-2-15 – on density, for 5th and 6th grade.
Episode 282, 9-21-15 – on living vs. non-living, for kindergarten.
Episode 309, 3-28-16 – on temperature regulation in animals, for kindergarten through 12th grade.
Episode 333, 9-12-16 – on dissolved gases, especially dissolved oxygen in aquatic habitats, for 5th grade.
Episode 403, 1-15-18 – on freezing and ice, for kindergarten through 3rd grade.
Episode 404, 1-22-18 – on ice on ponds and lakes, for 4th through 8th grade.
Episode 406, 2-5-18 – on ice on rivers, for middle school.
Episode 407, 2-12-18 – on snow chemistry and physics, for high school.
Episode 483, 7-29-19 – on buoyancy and drag, for middle school and high school.