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Decayed wood crumbled underfoot as I stepped on a mossy log. The ground was almost hidden by a lush, diverse growth of wildflowers and ferns. Brown scapes of wild leeks poked up above mottled leaflets of Virginia waterleaf and heart-shaped leaves of wild ginger. A green canopy of mostly suga…

WINDSOR — The Vermont Department of Forests, Parks, and Recreation (FPR) in partnership with Ascutney Trails Association (ATA) announced the completion and opening of a new multi-use trail on Mount Ascutney. The 8-mile Norcross Trail provides a link for mountain bikers and hikers between the…

MONTPELIER — Hikers and rock climbers can return to Vermont cliffs starting August 1, now that peregrine falcon nesting season has ended. The Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department has confirmed that all the young falcons have learned to fly and should not be disturbed by human presence on the…

Last summer while working in the garden, I was startled when a fast-flying wasp dropped a plump pumpkin spider on the soil in front of me. The wasp landed, grabbed the spider, and wiggled backwards into a small hole I hadn’t noticed, quickly covering the entrance as if to say, “nothing to se…

The Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department and partners will soon place new signs near eight ponds where the use of baitfish is prohibited. The signs will remind anglers that use of baitfish poses a threat to the wild native brook trout that have existed there for thousands of years.

BURLINGTON — A free webinar series offered through University of Vermont Extension will cover a broad array of topics of interest to maple producers from maple production and forestry practices to business management.

As we finally begin to emerge from the pandemic, and travel options are opening up, many of us are planning to be away from home this summer or fall. Just as we need to make arrangements for the care of our homes and pets, our gardens also will need some attention in our absence.

To quote the French dramatist Jean Giradoux, “The flower is the poetry of reproduction. It is an example of the eternal seductiveness of life.” Flowering plants fill our summer fields and gardens, bring bright spots of color to our woods, and — since their arrival on the scene some 130 milli…

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Editor's note: The Entomological Society of America, the world's largest organization of insect experts, has recently determined the use of "gypsy" is derogatory and has decided to refer to this species by its scientific name: Lymantria dispar. This essay has been edited to conform with that…

The Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department is offering Introduction to Fishing Clinics on Wednesday, July 21, at Heineberg Bridge Access Area on the Winooski River in Colchester and Thursday, July 22, on Otter Creek at Proctor Falls in Proctor.

One summer day, I was relaxing on the bank of a secluded pond watching mallard ducks forage when a dark shape broke the stillness of the water. It was a North American river otter, swimming with its head and back emerging from the surface, sleek body over 2 feet long, tapered tail trailing b…

RUPERT — The 3rd Annual Merck Forest and Farmland Bioblitz 2021 will be held on July 24-25. From novices to experts, all are welcome to document as much natural life on the property over the weekend as possible, from dawn to dusk.

HARTFORD — The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has awarded the Vermont Center for Ecostudies a five-year, $446,393 grant to support the Vermont Loon Conservation Project, a joint program between VCE and the Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department.

BURLINGTON — As public awareness of stormwater issues increases, so does interest in finding ways to protect local waterways. For many homeowners, schools, businesses and municipalities, the answer may be installing a rain garden.

In summer, while vegetables and flowers thrive in the garden, so does poison ivy in backyards, woods, disturbed areas and anywhere else it can get a toehold. Challenging to recognize due to its changing shape in different environments, careful observation and some knowledge of poison ivy cou…

Walking down my road on an early June afternoon several years ago, I spotted a snake attempting to cross into the underbrush. Covered in colorful splotches, it quickly slithered across the pavement and out of sight. I knew this wasn’t a gartersnake, a familiar visitor to my garden, and later…

Few birding experiences rival hearing the haunting call of the loon or seeing them glide by in protected coves on a lake. However, for the birds’ protection, the Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department is asking boaters and anglers to enjoy loons from a safe distance this summer.

In 1860, a year after publication of his seminal work on the origin of species, Charles Darwin wrote to a friend, “At the moment, I care more about Drosera than the origin of all the species in the world.” Darwin maintained a lifelong fascination with carnivorous plants, including members of…

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