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Northeast

Theodore Roosevelt - Presidential Birder

Of all American presidents, just one might have halted the playing of “Hail to the Chief” so he could listen to an Orchard Oriole singing — Theodore Roosevelt, “the conservation president.” During his presidency, Roosevelt helped establish 51 preserves for birds, five national parks, 18 national... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  environmental champion

The Companionship of Birds

When Brechin Morgan sailed around the world by himself, he experienced severe anxiety on the second night of his voyage. A cormorant sleeping on the deck of his boat brought peace at just the right moment. “I thought, my God, if this bird can sleep on a rocky, rolly boat in the middle of a windy,... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  human interaction, reflection

The Mockingbird - A Virtuoso of Variety

This aptly named Northern Mockingbird might imitate, in succession, birds as different as a bobwhite quail, a chat, a sandpiper — even a cardinal — then cap it off with the meow of a cat and a few phrases of car alarm. In spring, a male mockingbird sings all day, with hundreds of variations ... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  sound, species account, vocalization

Let It Snowy, Let It Snowy, Let It Snowy!

Two years after a Snowy Owl irruption, those of us in the Northeast are once again in the midst of one. And this might be the biggest invasion yet.Let It Snowy, Let It Snowy, Let It Snowy. These days, that's definitely my favorite tune. This new year has begun, just as 2013 ended … with... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  birding, photography

The Music of Herring Gulls

For some of us, it’s hard to get excited about gulls. But they are just as fascinating – and have as much to tell us – as other birds. Take the Herring Gull, for example. Its appearance is striking, and its voice is unforgettable. Along the Atlantic coast of North America, the nesting population... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  ecology

Winter Romance - Common Goldeneyes

Most duck species court and form pair bonds in winter. In the icy waters of Vermont’s Lake Champlain, Common Goldeneyes are getting hot! This male is displaying his signature move, the “head-throw-kick,” to attract a mate. Goldeneye pairs now bonding throughout the US will migrate... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  breeding display

Why the Black Skimmer Skims

That’s not a distant dog barking. It’s a Black Skimmer in flight, at the Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge in Virginia. This striking, black-and-white bird with a red bill and red feet has a most unusual way of feeding. It flies low along the surface of the water with its beak open. Closely... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  ecology, ornithology, plumage

Autumn – And Eagles and Ospreys – In Massachusetts

When thou seest an eagle, thou seest a portion of genius; lift up thy head.- William BlakeFor the last few weeks we've been enjoying a new discovery, Heard Pond in Wayland, Massaschusetts. The movie On Golden Pond could have been filmed here. It's that kind of landscape. You almost expect Henry... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  birding, photography

Bringing Puffins Back to Maine - With Stephen Kress

In 1977, Stephen Kress used a creative approach to reintroduce Atlantic Puffins to Eastern Egg Rock, an island in Maine’s Muscongus Bay: decoys! It had been 100 years since these charismatic birds had inhabited the island. Today, thanks to the continuing work by Dr. Kress and Project Puffin, the... read more »

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Peatlands - Maine's Sunkhaze Meadows Refuge

The habitats that comprise Sunkhaze Meadows Refuge in central Maine — including peat bogs, streamside meadows, shrub thickets, cedar swamps, and maple forests — are rich with bird life, like this Yellow-bellied Flycatcher. You’ll also find Bobolinks and more than 20 kinds of warblers during the... read more »

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