What Comes After Winter? Spring Time in Maine

Spring Time In Maine

Mud Season!

It is not quite Spring in Maine yet. But I have posted some pictures from last spring to keep me going until it finally does get nice. But before then…
Mud season in Maine is promising to be a dramatic one. Flooding is predicted. There has been a lot of precipitation this winter, and with the long freeze, the prediction says that if there is not a gradual thaw, there will be a sudden rush of melted ice and snow.
Our house is at the bottom of a hill (a 700 or so foot elevation actually) and one year I got so much water in my basement I had to take a canoe over to the drain, and go diving for it. Holy cow! The storm sewers were full of snow, and one of them was full of gravel and dirt and snow, and then it rained for a week solid. Don’t you love spring in Maine?

Elver Fish Season

This is also the season for American Eel catchers to try and make their money pulling the tiny baby eels from the fresh water as they try to swim back in. The life cycle of the Elver is like salmon, in that they spend part of their life out in the ocean and part in the fresh water rivers of Maine.
Last year the price of Elvers went to a whopping $1600 per pound. The high price was set in 2012 at $2000 per pound. Its no wonder the fisherman go armed. I met a

spring time in maine

Image from TheFishSight.com

lady who bought elvers for a company last year. She looked frazzled – like she hadn’t slept in a week.
There was a big brouhaha all last month and all winter practically about who has the right to give out Elver Fish licenses. Do the Native Americans have the right to issue as many as they want to their tribes-people? Or only the state of Maine?
I don’t really know the answer to that one – except for the fact that there are very few species left that can be responsibly harvested without risking their extinction. Now if it’s a sovereignty issue I guess its tricky. Because if the Native Americans enjoy some kind of sovereignty than they have rights within their territory. However, even states, which are considered sovereigns are subject to the Federal government. But if the argument is based on some kind of right to live traditionally, I don’t think there is a nail to hang your hat on. I don’t think that traditionally Native Americans fished any kind of species in order to ship them to the Japanese for $2000 per pound.
On the flip side – who says that the state of Maine can license the extinction of a species for the profit of a few people, a foreign country, and a few pennies in tax revenue and licensing fees? Since these resources belong to everybody shouldn’t everybody decide what to do with them? I guess that is what happens when the legislature makes laws about it – everybody decides through their representative. Right?

Insects Are Here!

The kid’s word a day calendar had “pediculous” which apparently means infested with lice. I thought of that as I saw my first flying insects today on my usual trail run. Where the hell do they come from? Do they hatch from eggs? How long do they live this time of year? I mean, it’s probably almost definitely going to get to be freezing again before the big thaw? Right? The ground was covered with a fresh half inch of powdery snow. The whole world was blindingly white. White sky, white clouds, white everything. It was mild and the birds were singing. What a fantastic day! The run was pretty good, except for the ice hidden under that pretty snow. But it was a forty degrees that felt like seventy when you’re running.

Start Your Seeds

No, I didn’t start any seeds yet. I don’t think I am going to either. I don’t have anywhere to put them, and when things go wrong it is so sad. Last year we had about a dozen giant pumpkin plants that looked so healthy. They were in doors too long and then were weak when I planted them. The patch got so weedy you could hardly tell what it was supposed to be. And not one g-darned pumpkin – giant or otherwise!