DMEA board member Aline Euler regularly conducts DMEA walking tours of hidden nature gems in northeast Queens. Aline’s Walks have led nature lovers, young and old alike, to listen to the Spring Peepers at Alley Pond Park, see the Osage Orange trees in Crocheron Park, and visit the ancient and giant Tulip Tree near the Cross Island Parkway. Her lasting impact is helping people to better understand and appreciate the natural ecosystems and protect our water planet, Earth, spinning and rotating in space with all its creatures, plants and people that call it home.
Aline Euler was the first Education Director at Alley Pond Environmental Center. She enjoyed working at APEC for 36 years. She said one of the job’s biggest challenge was getting people to understand the principles and complexity of the natural world and change the way they live to be more sustainable and resilient. In 2012, she received the Earth Day Award from the Queens Chapter of the United Nations Association. She is now on the chapter’s board of directors.
Aline's Walk: Spring Peepers
All of us on some level are looking forward to spring with its warmer weather, flowers blooming, the returning robins, the trees budding and leafing out, and the unique sound of the spring peepers. If you live anywhere east of the Mississippi River, you are in luck to hear these chorus frogs that serenade us with a free concert. It sounds like a symphony! Look for its favorite habitat, a freshwater pond in a forest, or freshwater swampy areas. We have a pond in Alley Pond Park that has these Peepers singing for us in the spring.
Not all frogs in cold climates bury themselves deep. This could be enough to avoid freezing temperatures in winter. There are actually five species that live in North America that can survive and one of them is the Spring Peeper. Up to 70 percent of the frogs’ body produces “antifreeze” to protect the most important organs. This frog species can produce their own “antifreeze” when the temperature goes below 32 degrees. Scientists are still not sure how they can wake up again. The amazing Peepers go through this unexplained process. Though only weighing a few grams, the Spring Peeper can produce a call as loud as songbirds.