iSeeChange

KVNF is proud to be the anchor station for iSeeChange in Colorado.  iSeeChange is in its new season, one of the few projects to renew it's participation in Localore, a national public media initiative produced by AIR (the Association for Independents in Radio).

iSeeChange is a crowd-sourced reporting project with KVNF that draws on community observations about seasonal shifts in the weather. Produced by Julia Kumari Drapkin, iSeeChange hosts conversations between citizens and leading scientists about environmental change in western Colorado — showcasing debates about climate through a mobile documentary unit, weekly radio broadcasts, and multimedia explorations of each season.

For more details on iSeeChange, look here.

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Produced by Julia Kumari Drapkin, the iSeeChange project at KVNF is part of Localore, a nationwide production of AIR designed to accelerate transformation and extend public service media to all Americans.   KVNF is the anchor station for iSeeChange in Colorado and part of a nation-wide colaboration with partner stations, universities, and scientific organizations. Localore is funded by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, the Wyncote Foundation, the John T. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, and the National Endowment for the Arts. Interactive storytelling partner Zeega co-produced TheAlmanac.org with iSeeChange.

For this episode, mushrooms festivals and mushrooms lovers.

iSeeChange: Hazy Days

Aug 27, 2015
helicopter, firefighting, wildfire, Aerial Firefighting
The U.S. Army via Flickr

Something’s in the air.  Ridgway resident Sue Husch noticed last week the same thing a lot of people on the Western Slope noticed: smoke.

Wade Hanson

As wildfires continue to rage in the Northwest, Colorado has had a relatively mild season.  It’s unsure, though, if it will stay that way. 

iSeeChange: Dead Finches

Aug 14, 2015
Flickr User quinet

Earlier this summer, we received an observation over at iseechange.org about finches.  Ann Cabillot  had a mystery: dead purple finches found across Paonia.

Peaches, Peach
flickr.com/bcostin

This year has been a difficult one for fruit growers on the Western Slope.  As fruit picking season develops,  the realities of the weather we’ve seen are evident. 

flickr user ashrunner

Denise Weaver lives in Sanborn Park, near Norwood, Colorado. Weaver and her husband have lived there for 10 years.  For the first time this spring, they heard something they were a little unfamiliar with: some sort of humming coming from the pine trees.  They investigated, and described finding locusts. 

Denise asked around, and eventually a local farmer said that they were cicadas, and not to be worried at all.  Still, she had some questions. 

Jake Ryan / KVNF

About 3 years ago, KVNF became the incubator station for iSeeChange, a new type of environmental reporting.  Instead of finding reports and studies about frogs, or insects, or climate change, and bringing that report to our listeners, we went backwards.  Take a listen to hear what we've reported on so far this year.

Darcie Rose

The unusually wet spring has made some mushroom foragers very happy. 

On this show,  a conversation KVNF's Jake Ryan had with Julia Kumari Drapkin, executive producer for iSeeChange.  The project started here at KVNF as a way to connect people to the bigger picture of climate change, and it’s now grown to a nation wide platform. 

Included at the end is a piece that was produced about a month ago, after a hard frost came through.  A Paonia orchardist, like a lot of farmers, was hit hard by the frost. 

Flickr User colorob

Spring is in full effect, and for quite a while birds have been migrating through the area.  One listener, Marylin Stone, commented on the iSeeChange website that she noticed, for the first time this year a Bullock's oriole and a hummingbird, she wasn’t positive which species.  I brought this observation to Jeff Birek, a biologist with the Rocky Mountain Bird Observatory.

iSeeChange: Frozen Fruit

May 2, 2015
Jake Ryan / KVNF

A hard freeze in April damaged a wide range of fruit crops on the Western Slope of Colorado.

Jessica Reeder via Flickr (CC BY creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/)

Spring is in full effect, and it seems to have a head start. 

iSeeChange: Forecasting A Fire Season

Apr 9, 2015
Hotchkiss Fire Department

With record wet and cold in the east, and record dry and hot in the west, some meteorologists are scratching their heads.

Dr. Michael Benard

Spring has officially started, but on the Western Slope of Colorado, people have been noticing signs of warm weather for a while.  iSeeChange.org has seen a lot of postings about early arrivals in the natural world.  Andrea Lecos, for example, noticed a spring time sound in the beginning of February.

Photograph and Western Chorus Frog sound courtesy of Dr. Michael Benard.

Hugh Carson

A winter storm has hit western Colorado, with the National Weather Service saying several feet of snow are possible in some areas of the central mountains.

Ali Lightfoot/KVNF

Another Halloween has come and gone, and this year for a very special iSeeChange report, KVNF's Ali Lightfoot spoke with trick or treaters about how the holiday has changed over the years.

Randy Hampton/Colorado Parks & Wildlife

Recently on the Almanac, Peter Cullen noticed he hasn't seen many bears in the mountains of New Mexico this year.

Bears are foragers, and Cullen says the lack of piñon, oak and juniper trees caused them to head down to mountain towns looking for thrown-away leftovers.

That got us thinking about our bear populations here in western Colorado.

Julia Kumari-Drapkin/KVNF

Dallas and June Harding are regulars on the Almanac, but most of their daily weather observations you'll see there date back to the late 1980s.

That's because those entires were transcribed from the journals June started keeping in 1985, when she and Dallas moved to their current home at the Harding Ranch near the base of Coal Mountain. I recently paid the Hardings a visit to talk about how they got involved with the iSeeChange project, and how journaling has played a role in their lives and the lives of previous generations.

Travis Bubenik/KVNF

For this week's iSeeChange report, we looked into the recent flurry of rain and some snow, and what, if anything, it might tell us about the coming winter.

JGColorado via Flickr (CC BY-NC)

In the wake of the historic Front Range Floods, many climate experts and researchers admit that while they’ve known of the potential for dangerous flooding in the Boulder area for some time now, hardly anybody could’ve predicted such a large-scale disaster.

We decided to look into what the floods might tell us about the future of massive storms, and whether the events of last week might change our definitions of "rare" weather events.

Tee Poole via Flickr (CC BY-NC-SA)

In late July, a massive dust storm in the Saharan Desert of Africa moved across the Atlantic, making for an interesting start to the hurricane season, or you could say a boring one.

Sadie Miller/KVNF

Last week the Almanac saw a lot of talk about mushrooms – Steve Smith said they seem to be popping up in larger numbers than usual – Marilyn Stone wondered what factors affect mushroom numbers – and Amber Kleinman asked whether it’s possible to grow puffballs in a yard. 

iSeeChange: Colorado Fruit Growers Harness Wind, Water, and Fire to Save Harvest

Aug 14, 2013
Kirsten Howard/Allie Goldstein

iSeeChange had the great pleasure of meeting two climate adaptation storytellers this summer, Kirsten Howard and Allie Goldstein. 1 car, 2 girls, and 3 months to travel across America and tell stories about the Great American Adaptation to climate change. After reading iSeeChange posts about frosts on the Almanac, they set out to talk to fruit farmers in the North Fork Valley. Here's what they found.

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Paonia & Hotchkiss, CO

Flowercat via Flickr (CC-NC-SA)

The height of the fruit season is approaching here in western Colorado, so for this week’s iSeeChange report, we decided to zoom out a bit and look at how Colorado’s biggest fruit crop fits into the national scene.  

Patty Kaech-Feder

Though we’re barely a week into August, some signs of fall have started to appear in western Colorado.

Eli Nixon (CC BY-NC-SA)

Afternoon clouds and occasional rains have dotted the Western Slope in the past few weeks, but that doesn’t mean people aren’t still worried about their water.

Last week Matthew Harris posted on the Almanac that the water he gets from German Creek was called on by a senior rights holder for the first time in the eight years he’s lived in Paonia. His creek’s just one of many that snake across the North Fork Valley, but if it’s been that long since that senior rights holder felt like they needed more water, should other residents and farmers be concerned? 

Marty Durlin, KVNF

On the Almanac last week, P Kaech reported seeing snow on the top of Mt. Baldy near Crested Butte, and Andrea Lecos noticed that monsoon rains have brought up mosquitoes and other insects. Humans may hate the bugs, but birds are feasting on them. 

Travis Bubenik, KVNF

If you've followed the weather for even the past few days, daily whether predications have been pretty, well, predictable: sunny in the morning, cloudy in the afternoon, a chance of rain as the day wears on and the sun starts to drop.

The Monsoon season has arrived in Colorado, the annual time when hot, high pressure in the atmosphere moves east across the Continental Divide and cool, moist air comes trailing in behind it. It's a reliable weather pattern, but exactly how reliable? 

Travis Bubenik, KVNF

For this week’s iSeeChange report, we explore concerns about ditch lining in the area, and whether these manmade environmental changes (much like the ditches themselves) may alter their surroundings.

Last week on the Almanac, Stewart Mesa resident noticed fewer numbers of wasps around her house. She says usually by this time of the summer, her front porch is practically overrun with wasps. But this year they seem to have disappeared. 

"P Kaech" via thealmanac.org

Last week, users on the Almanac reported seeing the summer's first sunflowers. One user was surprised to see the flowers were blooming already. 

University of Maryland Biology Professor David Inouye says the early blooming season probably has to do with the warmer weather as of late. Inouye spends his summers studying flowers at the Rocky Mountain Biological Laboratory near Crested Butte. His current project involves looking at how the timing of flowering and abundance of flowering at changing. 

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