Saturday, September 1, 2012

SUNY Cobleskill

Well, here I am...13 days ago I was in Alaska, and now I'm living in Cobleskill, NY! That's about a 3 hour drive East from where my family's from in NY. It's a nice enough area, and my house that I share with my friend Mady is comfortable...I'm just not quite settled yet. My life since about mid-May has been chaotic, and I'm kind of looking forward to being stable and living in one zip code for more than 3 months!

This is kind of a "boring" post, but I wanted to share what courses I was enrolled in this semester (Fall 2012).

Geographic Information Systems (3CR)
  • This course is designed to introduce students to the principles of GIS, and discuss the collection, management, manipulation, analysis and display of geographically referenced data. Students will apply GIS in a variety of "hands-on" laboratory exercises and assignments.
Woody Plant Materials (3CR)
  • A detailed study of deciduous and evergreen trees, shrubs and vines; their identification, growth habits, cultural requirements, ecological usefulness and use in the landscape. Emphasis will be placed on the study of both native and introduced species.
Spreadsheet & Database Application (3CR)
  • This course emphasizes the use of advanced concepts in spreadsheet and database applications. Students will gain understanding of concepts and skills required to develop complex business applications. Using software applications such as Microsoft Excel and Microsoft Access to store, organize, and retrieve business information that is critical to decision making. Concepts explored include developing complex business models, interaction with other software applications, and using visual programming tools.
Environmental Law & Regulation (3CR)
  • This course provides an introduction to environmental laws and regulations including an introductory overview of administrative law and procedure. Additionally, the course provides a basic understanding of environmental laws and discusses how various factors influence environmental policy and law. The course emphasizes the development of critical thinking skills by analyzing various court decisions that have helped shape the environmental landscape.
Wildlife Policy & Regulation Compliance (1CR)
  • A review of the policies of federal and state agencies that regulate and manage wildlife populations and their habitats. Reviewing environmental impact statements will be emphasized, along with other procedures of regulatory compliance designed to evaluate impacts of land development on threatened and endangered wildlife.
Wetlands Assessment & Dilineation (3CR)
  • A techniques course dealing with the recognition of hydric soils, hydric vegetation, wetland hydrology and the delineation of jurisdictional wetland boundaries. Hands-on laboratory exercises entail assessing the functional value of wetlands, collecting and identifying wetland vegetation, interpreting hydrological and biological indicators, and delineating wetland boundaries.

So that's 16 Credit Hours, which is full time (actually full time is just 12 CR). I'm also hopefully picking up a part time job or two, and getting involved with The Wildlife Society chapter here at Cobleskill.

I'll leave with a couple pictures of the critters we've "seen" in our backyard :)

Meet "Skinny", our thin-tailed gray squirrel. I think he's going to be a common player in our backyard stories.
Eastern cottontail
A different gray, note the thicker, bushier tail AND...the bald spot on his ribs? We've put up a few bird feeders, which you can see below is quite popular. We've witnessed a few scuffles among the locals, so perhaps he sustained this injury from a bird seed tussle.
Bad Skinny!
Skinny again!
Eastern chipmunk


  1. What a truly wonderful backyard, and love the bushy tails. They are very cheeky to try and eat from a bird feeder!!! Your course is very full, how many hours a day are you in 'class'? And where will you ever get time to work at a part time job for pay?? Hope the new zip code stays with you for some time. Fond greetings, Jean.

  2. Good luck at the new diggs!

    BTW...I'll bet that's a bot fly larvae buried behind the arm of that squirrel causing the bald spot.

    1. Thanks! I bet you're right, it hadn't occured to me...but now that you've said it, it seems many of our backyard guests are lumpy here and there. I've seen it before, on a mouse caught in a trap under my sink. DISGUSTING. That could be a whole blog entry!


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