WILMINGTON – The Ausable River Association (AsRA) is organizing the virtual tour, “Wild and Scenic Film Festival”, on Friday October 29th from 7pm to 9pm.
The evening of visual storytelling through inspiring films celebrates the beauty and importance of wild places around the world, and the important work being done to protect them.
The festival is a natural extension of AsRA’s work to inspire people to become more involved in conservation efforts in their local communities.
The Wild & Scenic Film Festival, hosted by the South Yuba River Citizens League, takes place each January in Nevada City, California.
Now in its 19th year, the home festival kicks off the international tour in communities around the world, allowing other environmental organizations to promote the science, advocacy, activism and education that are essential to keep our places healthy and beautiful wild animals.
AsRA has selected nine touring festival films that will be screened on a virtual platform.
Each film is a visual tapestry that highlights the people and organizations that make a difference by recognizing and embracing the natural processes and elements essential to all living things.
âWe had over 200 viewers joining us virtually last year for our second annual film festival, and we’re excited to introduce a new line of visual gems this year,â said Kelley Tucker, Executive Director of AsRA.
The feature films include: “A Fisher’s Right to Know,” a look at the fishermen who depend on Alabama’s mighty Coosa River for food, entertainment and family entertainment, while wondering if they and their families have it. right to know which fish are safe to eat.
“It’s about a community on a river in Alabama, and the mercury pollution that’s in that water there, and educating the community, the people who depend on that resource, to fish, for food and for family and fun recreation to actually know what exactly is in that fish, âsaid Tyler Merriam, Donor Outreach Manager.
âIn the Adirondacks, a
The challenge that we have had here for decades now, on which we have really started to make significant progress, is acid rain and the mercury pollution that comes with it.
âIt’s another parallel that people living in the Boquet watershed or the Adirondack region as a whole can relate to some of these challenges that other regions are experiencing outside of our region. “
âFeathers In Flightâ follows researchers from across the Americas who have come together to use cutting-edge science to protect the birds that unite the Western Hemisphere.
“These are scientists and researchers from North, Central and South America, all working together to use environmental DNA and genome mapping to better understand the migratory patterns of our birds in the Americas – North, Central and South America, âMerriam said.
âThis is also directly related to our work here, as we primarily use environmental DNA to learn more about our fish species. It can be used to learn about any species of wildlife.
“We use it to learn more about our native brook trout versus brown trout and rainbow trout, which are both stocked and non-native to the area, and also to learn more. on Atlantic salmon, which is native. “
The salmon live in the lower reaches of the Boquet and the Ausable river.
“We are once again working with other organizations like DEC, Trout Unlimited, to learn more about salmon behavior patterns and how we can better protect and understand their ecosystems and spawning patterns, etc.” said Merriam.
“Farmscape Ecology” is an exploration of the coexistence of agriculture and wildlife in New York’s Hudson Valley that serves as a backdrop for studies of native soil, water, wildlife and grasslands. across the United States.
Tucker and Merriam will present the films and their relationship to our local natural community.
Along the way, they will share more about the work being done in the Adirondacks and how it fits into larger conservation efforts around the world.
âA few of the movies in particular talk about some of the challenges we face in our region of the Adirondacks,â Merriam said.
âOne example is the movie called ‘Common Ground’. It’s about how farmers, ranchers, native tribes, and government work together to distribute water and restore streams and rivers in the Midwest so it can be more sustainable for farmland. It can be healthier for the earth’s ecosystem and quite simply better for the community and the environment all around.
The association in partnership with the US Fish and Wildlife Service and a few other partners are doing the same kind of work here in the Ausable River.
âMainly the eastern branch, but also to a certain extent the western branch of the Ausable River,â Merriam said.
âWe use natural stream restoration techniques to improve the health of the river and its ecosystems, which benefits wildlife and fish and so on. that depend on it, but it also improves the resilience of communities to flooding. This makes roads and human infrastructure safe for communities with the growing challenge of climate change and the frequency and intensity of storms here. “
Festival films transport spectators up to 4,000 to 5,000 miles.
“But they are directly applicable to this area because the same type of scientific knowledge, the same type of environmental projects and so on are used to help conserve these various species, to help the resilience of communities to flooding and to improve the habitat for community members, forward, âMerriam said.
âThat’s what’s exciting for me about these films too, is that the Ausable River Association doesn’t operate in a vacuum. We partner with a variety of municipalities, government organizations, private landowners, etc., and these people can see the success and direct benefits of our work. But I think often they don’t know that a lot of this work is interconnected across the country and the world in many ways. Much of what we’ve learned, we’ve learned from other parts of the country, other parts of the Western Hemisphere, and have taken these restoration techniques and scientific processes and applied them in our own. back yard.
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