04/25/14 8:00am
04/25/2014 8:00 AM
(Credit: Hunter Desportes/CreativeCommons.org)

(Credit: Hunter Desportes/CreativeCommons.org)


Aggression toward humans and native animal species, the depletion of submerged vegetation in aquatic ecosystems and degraded water quality due to droppings are among the negative impacts of mute swan populations, environmental experts say. Those concerns have prompted the state Department of Environmental Conservation to develop a wildlife management plan aimed at greatly reducing populations.  (more…)

08/01/12 12:00pm
08/01/2012 12:00 PM

COURTESY PHOTO | NY76.0844.24 makes a top-ranked floral, muscat wine, according to Cornell scientists. So what would you name it?

Love wine? Want to help name a new variety of grape?

Here’s  your chance.

Cornell University is asking the public to help them name two new varieties of grape from their breeding program set to be released next year.

Grape breeder Bruce Reisch is the man behind the new varieties, including a cold-hardy white wine grape and an organic dark red one, currently named NY76.0844.24 and NY95.0301.01, respectively.

Mr. Reisch said the name needs to stand out among the 7,000 other varieties of grape and be “marketable, easy to pronounce and carry positive connotations,” adding that both foreign-sounding and names similar to well-loved varieties are popular.

NY76.0844.24, the white wine grape, was first created in 1976, a highly productive grape that ranks high in its winter hardiness. Mr. Reisch said it has “excellent wine quality and aromatic characters reminiscent of Gewürztraminer or a citrusy Muscat.”

NY95.0301.01, the organic red, was developed in 1995 and fast-tracked into production because of its promise as an organic variety. It is the first grape to be released from a “no-spray” vineyard, with good resistance to both downy and powdery mildews. Mr. Reisch said “it exhibits moderate body, good structure and blueberry flavor on the pallette.”

The winning names will be revealed between February 6 and 8 at the Viticulture 2013 conference in Rochester, NY.

“There are so many different flavors,” Mr. Reisch said. “Why shouldn’t people get excited about new varieties? They keep things interesting for the consumer and are often better for growers.”

Got name suggestions? Leave a comment below to let us know what your ideas are and don’t forget to copy and paste them in an email to Mr. Reisch at [email protected].

12/10/11 4:23pm
12/10/2011 4:23 PM

TIM GANNON PHOTO | Joe Gergela, left, speaks with Lee Telega of Cornell's Office of Government Relations and Kathryn Boor at Phil Schmitt farm

Local farmers and researchers hope a visit by the dean of Cornell’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Saturday will result in increased funding and research for the East End’s agricultural community.

Long Island Farm Bureau and Cornell Cooperative Extension arranged Dean Kathryn Boor to tour the Phil Schmitt & Son Farm in Riverhead, C.J. Van Bourgondien greenhouse in Peconic, Bedell Cellars winery in Cutchogue and Cornell’s research lab on Sound Avenue in Baiting Hollow.

And it sounds like they might have achieved their goal.

Ms. Boor said afterward that she’d never been this far east in New York, although her mother went to college in Farmingdale 70 years ago.

“The scale of agriculture here is above anything I might have expected,” Ms. Boor told a reporter.

She said she was impressed with the North Fork’s soil, demonstrated by Bedell winemaker Richard Olsen-Harbich, and the “ability of plants to grow so lavishly here on Long Island.”

Joe Gergela, executive director of Long Island Farm Bureau, said the goal was to show Ms. Boor examples of the different types of local agriculture.

As dean of Cornell’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, Ms. Boor is a powerful person in the ag instrustry, and can be instrumental in helping Long Island farms get grant money and access to Cornell’s research, Mr. Gergela said.