Category Archive: Places

What’s In Flower During Mid-August?

I designed a compensatory wetland mitigation project that was constructed in 2017, and now is in it’s first year of a Maryland Department of the Environment and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, 5-year… Continue reading

Live-Lining on the Miss Ashleigh

Dave and I took the day off to go fishing with Captain Bryan Schmitt on the Miss Ashleigh. We launched out of Ferry Point Marina on the Magothy River. Motoring out of the… Continue reading

Opening Weekend at Guinness Brewery

  Welcome to the new Guinness Open Gate Brewery and Barrel House in Baltimore, Maryland! You can click on any photo to enlarge it, and then click your reverse button to go back… Continue reading

Black Bear Sighting

While on vacation to Nags Head, North Carolina, we did an inland day trip to allow our sun burns to mellow.  We made an appointment for a select guided tour of the 152,000-acre,… Continue reading

OBX Crabbing & Shrimping

It’s vacation week for the Burchick’s, renting a five bedroom house on the Outer Banks (Kitty Hawk-Nags Head) for twelve.  The week was hot and mostly sunny.  One of the highlights for the… Continue reading

Dinosaurs Walked Within Miles of the Burchick’s Greenbelt Residence

NASA, Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, MD Our neighbor and friend Tom D’Asto works at Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC), and was able to give us a private tour of the just added… Continue reading

Blackwater Wildlife Refuge

Tom and Jennifer D’Asto, my wife Michelle and I spent the day at the U.S. Fish and Wildlife, Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge in Cambridge, Maryland. We arrived in the morning and the air… Continue reading

Timber Rattlesnake Documented in Howard County, MD

The Maryland Amphibian and Reptile Atlas (MARA) was a 5-year survey (2010-2014) to systematically document amphibian and reptile distributions throughout Maryland.  The MARA mapping now complete, documents the distribution of amphibians and reptiles,… Continue reading

Jug Bay Fishing

Time to fish the fresh tidal Patuxent River at Jug Bay.  Joining in were Tom and Nick D’Asto, and Nick’s girlfriend Alix, from Jacksonville, Florida. We launched at the peak of low-tide/slack-tide and… Continue reading

Red-Shouldered Hawk

With the sun very low in the sky and quickly setting, my wife noticed a hawk in our garden. The hawk was perched on a bluebird box and was intensely staring at the… Continue reading

Basking in Totality

At the urging of my son Mark, Michelle and I, along with Mark’s girlfriend Jena, went to visit my brother Jamie and his wife Anna in Columbia, South Carolina.  Columbia is in the… Continue reading

Live-Lining on the Miss Ashleigh

A spectacular afternoon on the water, as we launched out of Happy Harbor with Captain Bryan Schmitt on the Miss Ashleigh (Loosen-Up II). Dave Knorr organized this mid-life crisis trip, which included his… Continue reading

Wolf’s Milk Slime Mold

While working at a stream restoration job site in Indian Head, Charles County, MD, I happened across some Wolf’s Milk Slime Mold, Lycogala epidendaum, growing from a rotting log. The following is an… Continue reading

Basic Oak-Hickory Forest Community

I was charged with performing a rare plant survey for the federally endangered Harperella Ptilinium nodosum, also known as Piedmont Mock Bishopweed, an obligate (OBL) wetland plant that likes rocky riverbeds, rocky and… Continue reading

Company Fishing Trip

Work hard, play hard! It’s time for the Environmental Systems Analysis, Inc. (ESA) fishing trip, the premiere natural resources management and ecological restoration company, restoring the central Atlantic States at competitive prices! We… Continue reading

Sabotage By Raccoon

It was planned well ahead of time that Joshua would have his annual summer day of crabbing on the Chesapeake Bay.  Coming off of last year when he caught two bushels of crabs… Continue reading

Touring Washington DC from the Water

Tom and Jennifer D’Asto, Michelle and I spent the morning touring Washington DC from the water.  Only on one other occasion (Assateague and Chincoteague Island wild horse watching) have I used my Carolina… Continue reading

Mount Vernon

Happy Birthday Michelle!  Michelle and I both took off today and Monday to have a five-day Fourth of July stay-cation, and we spent this morning touring Mount Vernon, the plantation estate home of… Continue reading

Flushed Fawn

I was on a job-site along the Patuxent River in Laurel, Maryland, and came upon a baby whitetail deer fawn. I’ve encountered this several times over many years in the woods, but never… Continue reading

Walnut Creek

Dave Knorr and I were investigating a site for suitability as an area for compensatory wetland creation.  Important for consideration are non-forested locations that have positive hydrology indicators. Arriving to the site in… Continue reading

Memorial Day Fishing

    Tom D’Asto, his son Nick and I spent the morning fishing on the Potomac River.  We launched out of Slavin’s on the Mattawoman and made our way over to the Chicamuxen.… Continue reading

What’s With The Cicadas?

Why the appearance of cicadas (the 17-year locust) in the greater Washington D.C. area? Perhaps it’s climate confusion.  Maybe it’s just really hard for a 17-year cicada to count down the years while he’s… Continue reading

Pointed Blue-Eyed Grass

I did a wetlands/waters delineation near Waldorf, Maryland, of a tributary of Mattawoman Creek (Piney Run).  Early in the morning near where I parked my truck, I noticed several patches of Blue-Eyed Grass… Continue reading

Soil Drainage Classification Course

Mid-Atlantic Association of Professional Soil Scientists, 2017 Spring Field Day,  Evesboro to Elkton – A Day in the Pits. Leslie and I attended the MAPSS soils class held at the National Plant Materials… Continue reading

Howard County Cup Race Meet

Over Hill and Dale . . . Tom D’Asto and I attended the 74th running of the Howard County Cup Race Meet on Kentucky Derby Day.  The race was held at Pleasant Prospect… Continue reading

Good Friday Fishing on the Pocomoke

It’s becoming a tradition to take-off and fish each Good Friday prior to Easter, and this year was no exception. As usual, Dave Knorr and I went to Shad Landing State Park on… Continue reading

Kerr Lake Weekend

Michelle and I spent the weekend with Dan and Patti Betz, at their Kerr Lake waterfront property in Henderson, North Carolina. I took my DJI  Mavic Pro and took a few aerial photos. … Continue reading

St. Patrick’s Day Guided Fishing

Dan and I took off from our respective places of employment Friday, March 17, 2017, St. Patrick’s Day, to take a guided fishing trip on the Potomac River.  Our guide for the day… Continue reading

Round-Lobed Hepatica

I’m working on an upcoming presentation for the Nature Conservancy and an energy company, where we are considering particularly sensitive ecological restoration practices when installing utilities through natural areas. I’ve managed two similar… Continue reading

A 75-Degree February Friday!

Observations from the Field. The fall line.  This is the last set of rock outcrops and grade drop on the Piedmont of the Patuxent River in Laurel, Maryland, and is the location of… Continue reading

Blonding of Ash Trees

Another gentleman and I performed a wetland delineation of a forested wetland (PFO1A) on February 10, 2017.  The site was in Bowie, Maryland, on an unnamed tributary of Collington Branch, which ultimately flows… Continue reading

Giant Cane

Giant Cane  Arundinaria gigantea (FACW) Our firm is beginning the concept design work for a stream restoration project in Glen Burnie, Anne Arundel County, Maryland.  While in the field Dave Knorr noticed a… Continue reading

Fishing With The Gulls

Tom and I went fishing early this morning, launching out of Smith’s Marina in Crownsville, Maryland, and then out onto the Severn River and the Chesapeake Bay, south of Annapolis. The morning was… Continue reading

First In Flight

This morning we visited the Wright Brothers National Memorial at Kill Devil Hill, in Kitty Hawk, North Carolina. The entry fee was waived, as the National Park Service is celebrating their 100 year… Continue reading

Dawn Search For Black Bear

Mark, Jena, Michelle and I booked a private driving tour of Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge, located in Manteo, North Carolina, with two U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) biologists.  Our obligation was… Continue reading

Flying Through the Wetlands

Howard and Anne Arundel County, MD. Leslie, who did a fantastic job with the initial design, and I, are the process of building a seven-acre created wetland (compensatory mitigation) abutting the Patuxent River,… Continue reading

MD DNR Fish Tag

Dave, Steve and I went fishing this morning, and were on the water by 7:30 AM, launching from Smith Marina and onto the Severn River. Passing by many a crabber, we headed out… Continue reading

What’s in Flower for the Third Week of July?

While working a job-site in the headwaters of Hawlings Creek, which flows to the Triadelphia Reservoir (Patuxent River) in Montgomery/Howard County, I observed the following flowering species: White Vervain, Verbena urticifolia. Horse Nettle,… Continue reading

Potomac Fishing

Sunday, July 3, 2016 fishing on the Potomac, Mattawoman and Chicamuxen. It was a rainy morning at Smallwood State Park, but which stopped by 9:00 AM.  Steve launched out of Leesylvania State Park,… Continue reading

The Swarm

So, I’m working in my front yard, trimming landscape bushes and I see my neighbor Tom D’Asto, driving down my driveway with purpose.  I can see too, that he was fully gowned in… Continue reading


Puttyroot Orchid (Aplectrum hymale) All native orchids are special, and most are uncommon to rare, threatened and/or endangered.  Some of the more “common” orchids to Maryland include cranefly, rattlesnake plantain and puttyroot. The… Continue reading

Brownish-Gray Fishing Spider

Brownish-Gray Fishing Spider ( Dolomedes tenebrosus ) The brownish-gray fishing spider, Dolomedes tenebrosus, is often found near or in water, but they also hunt in forests.  Dolomedes do not build webs to capture prey.… Continue reading

Coville’s Phacelia

Coville’s Phacelia, Phacelia covillei While working at a job site this week, Jim and I discovered several locations where Coville’s Phacelia occurred. Coville’s Phacelia is Maryland State Rare (S2), State Status Endangered. The… Continue reading

Large-Seeded Forget-Me-Not

Large-Seeded Forget-Me-Not, Myosotis macrosperma While working at a job site this week, Jim and I discovered dozens of locations where large-seeded forget-me-not occurred. Large-seeded forget-me-not, a facultative plant (FAC), is Maryland State Rare… Continue reading

Spring Coralroot

Spring Coralroot, Corallorhiza wisteriana While working at a job site this week, Jim and I discovered two locations and a total of thirty spring coralroot stems. Spring coralroot, an upland plant (UPL), is… Continue reading

Patuxent Wildlife Refuge

The early spring ephemeral wildflowers of the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, North Tract – Patuxent Wildlife Refuge, in Laurel, MD.  It was a cold Saturday, where we had spitting snow in the… Continue reading

Church Creek

It has been a very cold late March and early April, which in turn has been suppressing wildflower development.  I had a job on a nontidal reach of stream that flows to the… Continue reading

Holy Saturday Fishing

I have taken-off from work to go fishing every Good Friday for many years, but this year it rained, shifting Good Friday to Holy Saturday fishing. Dave and I went to Shad Landing… Continue reading

Eastern American Toad

Eastern American Toad  (Anaxyrus americanus) While performing forestry work at a job-site in Layhill, Montgomery County, Maryland, I observed an Eastern American Toad in the forested Northwest Branch floodplain. The toad allowed me… Continue reading

Climbing Fern

Jim and I performed a field survey for the Maryland highly state rare (S2) climbing fern (Lygodium palmatum) at a 15-acre location in Anne Arundel County, MD.  The notable features of the threatened… Continue reading