The Outside Story Archive

  • Mammal Teeth thumbnail

    Mammal Teeth

    by Tim Traver | May 22nd 2017
    When my daughter was four, she once asked, “Do mice get cavities?” We were coming back from the dentist, so teeth were on her mind… Read More »

  • The Great Duckweed Migration thumbnail

    The Great Duckweed Migration

    by Declan McCabe | May 15th 2017
    The word ‘migration’ conjures images of vast wildebeest or pronghorn herds crossing plains in unison, or hummingbirds traversing the Gulf of Mexico. When charismatic birds… Read More »

  • A Precious Stone with Wings thumbnail

    A Precious Stone with Wings

    by Carolyn LoriƩ | May 8th 2017
    One day last spring, I pulled into a parking lot in Thetford, Vermont, and saw a flash of brilliant red. Instantly, I knew it was… Read More »

  • Wild Leeks thumbnail

    Wild Leeks

    by Virginia Barlow | May 1st 2017
    The white bulbs of wild leeks, also called ramps (especially in the south), can be eaten year round, but it’s the early leaves that are… Read More »

  • High Water and Hidden Possibility on the Soggy Edge of Spring thumbnail

    High Water and Hidden Possibility on the Soggy Edge of Spring

    by Dan Lambert | April 24th 2017
    The word has fallen out of use since the late 1800s, but you might hear its echo this time of year wherever streams carve channels… Read More »

  • Drumroll, Please thumbnail

    Drumroll, Please

    by Bryan Pfeiffer | April 17th 2017
    Trees speak many languages, their leaves whooshing in summer and trunks creaking in winter. At the onset of spring, trees become sounding boards for courtship.… Read More »

  • Return of the Missing Lynx thumbnail

    Return of the Missing Lynx

    by Susan Shea | April 10th 2017
    In the northern forest of New England, a big gray cat crouches silently in a dense thicket of fir along a snowshoe hare run. Its… Read More »

  • Woodcock Habitat thumbnail

    Woodcock Habitat

    by Elise Tillinghast | April 3rd 2017
    Every year around this time, my husband, kids and I haul out the tent blind from our garage and set it up in the field… Read More »

  • Time Travel in a Peat Bog thumbnail

    Time Travel in a Peat Bog

    by Declan McCabe | March 27th 2017
    Gutter pipes full of soggy peat show up on the bench by my office each March.  This means one thing: my colleague Peter Hope’s Saint… Read More »

  • Beaver Bird: The Adaptable Hooded Merganser thumbnail

    Beaver Bird: The Adaptable Hooded Merganser

    by Michael J. Caduto | March 20th 2017
    Imagine ten nearly round white eggs snug in a hollow tree, lined with soft feathers plucked from the mother’s breast. The hen carefully tends the… Read More »

  • Some Early Research on Climate Change and Soil thumbnail

    Some Early Research on Climate Change and Soil

    by Rachel Sargent | March 13th 2017
    For many of us, winter in the Northeast means cold temperatures and piles of snow, drifting through forests and across fields. It’s hard to imagine… Read More »

  • Foxes Active in Late Winter thumbnail

    Foxes Active in Late Winter

    by Meghan McCarthy McPhaul | March 6th 2017
    The first time I saw the fox last February, I did a double take. It was late morning when I glanced out the window on… Read More »

  • Winter Bird Rehab thumbnail

    Winter Bird Rehab

    by Leah Burdick | February 27th 2017
    An injured barred owl sat in the back seat of a four-door sedan, staring balefully out the window at its rescuer. “I saw him on… Read More »

  • Snow Buntings: Nomads from the North thumbnail

    Snow Buntings: Nomads from the North

    by Susan Shea | February 20th 2017
    Driving to town on a winter day, I occasionally see flocks of white birds where the wind sweeps across fields, blowing snow across the road… Read More »

  • The Curious Case of the Cute “Face” Crane Fly thumbnail

    The Curious Case of the Cute “Face” Crane Fly

    by Declan McCabe | February 13th 2017
    An email chirped in my inbox; “Check out the cute face on this insect we found.” I opened the attachment (yes, from a reliable source).… Read More »

  • All About Antlers thumbnail

    All About Antlers

    by Meghan McCarthy McPhaul | February 6th 2017
    A few autumns ago, one of the frequent visitors to our gone-wild apple orchard was a lopsided, one-point buck. We often see does and young,… Read More »

  • Bark in Winter thumbnail

    Bark in Winter

    by Joe Rankin | January 30th 2017
    It’s winter. Hardwood trees are bare. But that doesn’t mean the woods are bereft of interest. Winter, when sunlight slants in, is the time when… Read More »

  • Mink in the Middle thumbnail

    Mink in the Middle

    by Meghan McCarthy McPhaul | January 23rd 2017
    If the river otter is the most aquatic member of the mustelid family, and weasels represent the terrestrial branch of the clan, the American mink… Read More »

  • Boisterous Blue Jays Flock in Winter thumbnail

    Boisterous Blue Jays Flock in Winter

    by Susan Shea | January 16th 2017
    “Jay, jay, jay!”  Every morning last winter I awoke to the loud cries of a flock of 17 blue jays dancing around my feeder. They… Read More »

  • The Arthropods Among Us thumbnail

    The Arthropods Among Us

    by Kenrick Vezina | January 9th 2017
    Not to alarm you, but you’re surrounded. There, buzzing stupidly into the slats of your venetian blinds, is a house fly. Nearby, nestled in a… Read More »