Stratum 70 Is Dry

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Written by Brad Pendley
Thursday, May 26, 2016

Photo of Brad Pendley.Stratum 50 in western Ontario looked pretty similar to previous years. There were a few dry areas, but for the most part, the water and ducks were there. We finished up Stratum 50 in five straight days of flying. They were long, great days and it felt good to make so much progress in a short period of time. We finished up in time to head back across the line to Maine for a quick plane swap. Trusty old N708 was due for her 100 hour inspection. It was also a chance for us to bump into another crew that was finishing up. Three hours in the states and right back across. After a stop in New Brunswick and a welcome down day for weather, we saddled up and crossed the St. Lawrence Gulf. I love when we cross because you never know what you might see. This year I looked down just in time to see some whales breaching.

The goal was to start and finish Stratum 70 in a day and we got it done. This stratum contains one of my favorite lines, 70-01. The line parallels the coast and has quite a few ups and downs. It has many river crossings and a bunch of waterfalls. The entire length is a sight to behold. Black ducks started showing up immediately on the line, just as expected. We did notice the southern line in 70 was drier. We swung north to run 70-02 back to the west and it was much drier. Many of the bogs and wetlands were dry or much smaller than the previous two years. We still saw ducks, but habitat for this particular line was not in great shape. We are hoping that Stratum 69 and the rest of Quebec is a little wetter.

N723, N708 and N769 in one spot. Photo Credit: Brad Penley, USFWS.

N723, N708 and N769 in one spot. Photo Credit: Brad Penley, USFWS.