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Month: November 2017

Faraway Places: North Umpqua River Area

Faraway Places: North Umpqua River Area

While visiting my boyfriend’s parents in Oregon for Thanksgiving week, we found time to explore the Rogue-Umpqua Scenic Byway along the North Umpqua River. (Last year we took a day trip to the Redwoods in California and spent some time exploring the local hiking trails in Roseburg.) Despite the cool temperatures and persistent rain showers, the North Umpqua River and its surroundings were still beautiful. We hiked into 3 different waterfalls (Toketee, Fall Creek and Susan Creek Falls), and made a quick…

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Book Review: Coyote America

Book Review: Coyote America

This book was enlightening, but not at all in the ways I expected it to be. I expected a book about coyotes, what they eat, what habitats they prefer, how they raise their young, and other ecological information. I expected a book about coyotes in my America (that is, in Massachusetts, where as far as I can remember coyotes have always existed). Instead I learned just how recently coyotes have expanded into the east coast states (only in the last…

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Autumn Meadowhawks (Sympetrum vicinum)

Autumn Meadowhawks (Sympetrum vicinum)

Last night the temperature dropped below freezing for the first time this season – down to 18 degrees, in fact. Although there wasn’t as much frost as I would’ve imagined, there was ice. (Last year’s first frost happened ten days earlier – October 31.) While taking a walk this morning near Santuit Pond in Mashpee, with the temperatures still hovering around 32 degrees, I observed frozen ditches, puddles and ponds. The surface of this small pond had frozen. Interesting ice…

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Virginia Opossum Skull (Didelphis virginiana)

Virginia Opossum Skull (Didelphis virginiana)

With the exception of the veritable army of squirrels stashing acorns in my backyard, my (live) mammal sightings are relatively rare. I’ve caught glimpses of white-tailed deer and a fisher while walking in the Bourne Town Forest. Occasionally a red fox or a coyote dashes across the road at night in front of my car. I have encountered skunks near my house a few times. But for the most part, indications of these species’ presence take other forms, such as…

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