Nature

  • Goldthread name comes from roots

    Goldthread name comes from roots

    The peeper chorus is at full column theses spring nights. It sounds to me like hundreds of sleigh bells ringing in our wetlands large and small. Each of our amphibians has a different voice, and it’s always fun to pick out a familiar voice in the swampland chorus. There are many electronic aids such as

  • Coltsfoot likes wet ‘feet’

    Coltsfoot likes wet ‘feet’

    New spring migrants arrive every day, and new plants are coming in woods and fields. Spring is moving along and very welcome here on Mount Desert Island. The leaves of Canada mayflower are poking up, and coltsfoot is in bloom, as is leatherleaf. This last mentioned leatherleaf, Chamaedaphne calyculata, is really an evergreen shrub growing

  • Brant geese return

    Brant geese return

    Spring is a wonderful time of year for nature writers; there is so much going on in the natural world. Brant geese recently have been seen at the Trenton Bridge. They appear there each year in March and April, and some linger into May. They are smaller geese than the Canadian geese we see here

  • Marsh hawk may have multiple mates

    Marsh hawk may have multiple mates

    A large bird was flying low over a field at the side of the road and then crossed in front of a friend of mine in Lamoine this past week. She was seeing a beautiful avian glider called the “northern harrier” or “marsh hawk.” This large hawk has a beautiful flight. It glides low over

  • Herons are harbingers of spring

    Herons are harbingers of spring

    Great blue herons have arrived once again into our area of Maine; the sights and pleasures of a new spring season are slowly appearing. These magnificent herons are with us for many months and are seen along the shore areas and in and about island ponds, lakes and streams They are big birds, standing about

  • Amphibians are on the move

    Amphibians are on the move

    My son and his family found lots of amphibian activity the end of last week on a rainy night walk. When frogs and salamanders decide to look for their breeding ponds, they usually pick a warm, rainy night to their liking and head for the nearest breeding ponds. A beautiful wood frog appeared along the

  • Turkey vultures returning

    Turkey vultures returning

    Greet each morning with great expectations these new April days, for migrants are arriving slowly but surely, and all forms of wildlife are getting ready for new families and new life. It can be very exciting if you take time to notice what is happening around you on this island in Maine. A friend told

  • Porcupine needs helping hand

    Porcupine needs helping hand

    Regardless of the weather, life in the natural world moves along towards spring and prepares for warmer days and nights and new families in our woods and fields. Feathered migrants from the south will soon be surprising us in the air and at our feeders. Even now, it is possible to see a double-crested cormorant

  • March still acting like a lion

    March still acting like a lion

    We are still in the heavy grip of winter, but the natural world moves ahead, for spring is on the way and moves right along. Migrants start to return in spite of the weather, and their journey at times may be perilous. Late migrants in the fall and early ones in the spring may or

  • Despite snow, spring pushes on

    Despite snow, spring pushes on

    The latest snowstorm with high winds and wet heavy snow gave our island a bit of excitement recently. In spite of it all, spring pushes on, and our wildlife moves ahead on schedule. We have turned the clocks ahead and will have more daylight hours, and I, for one, am glad about that. Flocks of