Photo: Pioneer sugar plant in Sebewaing, Michigan, in a photo taken by the author about two weeks ago.
The sugar beet harvest has arrived in Michigan just to the north and east of East Lansing. Driving by the areas where the beets are farmed, you can see huge piles of the beets piled in trucks and on staging pads across the region. The beets look like big, cream-colored turnips. One pile I drove by in Sebewaing two weeks ago was about 15-feet high, two lanes wide, and as long as a football field. (See below.)
Illustrations from Sky Calendar are provided by Abrams Planetarium. Morning and evening twilight sky maps by Robert D. Miller.
During October and early November, there are exceptionally beautiful gatherings of planets in the morning sky. A waning crescent Moon graces the lineup of planets on Oct. 8-11 and Nov. 6-7. Except as noted, these spectacular sights through Nov. 10 will be well seen about an hour before sunrise.
Gier Park School "Salmon in the Classroom" release. Photo Credit: David Kenyon, Michigan DNR
Coho salmon are slowly swimming their way back to East Lansing and the public has the opportunity to run with them during the “Red Cedar Salmon Run,” an annual 5K on Michigan State University’s campus.
UPDATE! We have a special offer for ELi readers. Be one of the first five people to identify yourself to the person in the ELi t-shirt at the parking ramp gathering on Sunday, September 27, and get a free ELi mug!
Sky watchers in the eastern U.S. have a chance to enjoy a total eclipse of the Moon on the evening of Sunday, September 27.
ELi does not allow editorializing, so, reader, when I tell you that sandhill cranes (Grus canadensis) are magnificent, I am simply being descriptive., This summer and fall resident of East Lansing is a beautiful, extravagant, fancy-dancing bird.
This promises to be an excellent year for the Perseid meteor showers in East Lansing. Sharp-eyed observers may see some early or late Perseids for a few weeks on either side of the shower’s peak, which is on the night-to-early morning of August 12-13. You can also read ELi’s coverage of the Geminids and the Lyrids.
Image: The author (on crutches) visiting the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter array high site at over 16,000 feet.
Nine astronomy educators were chosen to visit Chile this June for ten days as part of the National Science Foundation-funded Astronomy in Chile Educator Ambassador Program (ACEAP). They were sent to experience why Chile is one of the astronomy capitals of the world and I was lucky enough to be one of those educators.
Bees are high-profile creatures these days, and one (tasty) way to help them to thrive is to become a backyard beekeeper.
At times referred to as the “angels of agriculture,” honey bees pollinate millions of crops per year and an estimated one in three bites of food you eat. Unfortunately, their populations have declined dramatically in recent years due to habitat loss, deforestation, industrial agriculture, parasitic mites, and Colony Collapse Disorder.
Above: The author being bitten by a local mosquito.
More than nine inches of rain in June and continued rain well into July have created mosquito development habitat in the standing water of yards, fields, and nearly any upright container in town. The mosquitoes that hatch in the summer can turn over a new generation every two weeks as long as there is standing water for their reproduction cycle, and that means we in East Lansing have at least a few more mosquito-filled weeks left in the season.
Image: The new recycling bins coming soon to East Lansing neighborhoods
Recycling in East Lansing is getting re-cycled! There has been a buzz in East Lansing about bigger bins, an expanded list of recyclables, changing collection schedules, and more. I reached out to Cathy DeShambo, Environmental Services Administrator for the City of East Lansing, for her insights into the changes residents can expect, and this is what she had to say: