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      The Monadnock Nature Almanac is a monthly bulletin board of natural history activity in the southern New Hampshire

      Monadnock region, a mixed transitional forest upland of gentle hills, rivers, streams, and lakes located in Cheshire and

      Hillsborough counties. Covering approximately 800 square miles, it ranges in general elevation from 400 to 1200 feet  

      above sea level. Numerous peaks exceed 1400 feet, the highest of which,  Mount Monadnock, rises to 3165 feet. 

 

 

                                    

                                        "If we study nature attentively in its great evolutions as in its minutest works, we cannot fail

                                         to recognize the possibility of enchantment - giving to that word its exact significance." 

                                                 ....... Honore  de Balzac                                           

                                     

 

 

                                                                                                                                                                                

  MONADNOCK NATURE NOTES........ May 2015

 

                                        Subscribers are encouraged to submit their sightings, observations, and comments for inclusion

                                        in the Monadnock Nature Almanac's Nature Notes.  Submit to  brimstone108@myfairpoint.net. 

                                        Please include name and town.

 

  

      May, ............           "April is promises and tentative beginnings, but May is achievement. May is dawn shimmering with 

                                     dew and sunrise on lawn and meadow, dancing with young leaves in every woodland,  jubilant with

                                     birdsong in every treetop. May is dogtooth violets besides the brimming brooks, the first buttercups

                                     beyond the pasture fence, purple violets everywhere.  May is apple blossoms and lilacs, and if any

                                     other month can surpass that combination we have yet to learn its name. .... May is a special kind of

                                     verity, a testament to the reality of a live and sentient world. Define it as you will , it is all around us

                                     now, a reality that needs no explanation."    ..... Hal Borland, Twelve Moons of the Year

 

      May 1, ...........       An item from the Yogi Berra  "You Can Observe a Lot by Looking" Files.  One day last week I finally

                                     got around to taking down my winter screened porch covers. (this usually coincides roughly with my

                                     removal of the Christmas wreath from the front door). With temperatures moving into the high seventies,

                                     I decided  (with the porch covers off and the warm sun streaming onto the porch) that it would be an 

                                     appropriate time for my "ceremonial first porch refreshing adult beverage of the season". Settling down 

                                     on my favorite chair, I glanced out to the far rear corner of the back yard to a large Rhododendron bush

                                     which is out of sight for the winter months, and was now in view.  I was amazed to see what the deer had

                                     done to it during the severe weather of the late winter. The  bush is about ten- twelve feet in diameter and

                                     approximately eight-nine feet in height.  The bottom two feet were full of normal foliage (this area was

                                     under the snow cover). The upper three feet were also capped and domed in full foliage, but the six to

                                     seven feet in between were completely denuded of foliage. Not a single leaf !  It was a strange sight. 

                                     I couldn't decide  whether it looked more like a fringe-footed mushroom or the latest hairdo on an NBA 

                                     power forward.   ..... Chuck Schmidt, Hancock           

 

      May 1, ...........       Bobcats, to Hunt or Not ? That is the Question - Bobcats are in the news these days as the state of NH

                                     considers reinstating hunting and trapping seasons after a 26 year suspension. As brief history -

                                     bobcat numbers declined some 50 years ago as the forest grew up and cottontail rabbits lost their

                                     preferred shrubby habitat. As they decreased, Bobcats lost their main prey. Competition from growing

                                     coyote numbers didn't help. By 1989, when New Hampshire halted bobcat hunting and trapping, there

                                     were thought to be fewer than 150 bobcats in the state - although estimating such a secretive species is

                                     hard to do. A recent study estimated that the current population has grown to 1,400. The NH Fish and

                                     Game Commission directed the NH Fish and Game Department to draft and present a proposal for a

                                     hunting and trapping season on April 8th. That's when bobcats hit the news and the letters-to-the-

                                     editor columns. A recent UNH analysis of road killed bobcats shows that NH bobcats have greater

                                     genetic diversity than populations in Maine, Vermont and Massachusetts. The NH Commissioners are

                                     still available for comment by e-mail, snail mail or phone. Contact the New Hampshire F & G Commision

                                     wildlife@wildlife.nh.gov  with "bobcat" in the subject line.   ....... Francie Von Mertens, Peterborough,                                        

                                         Excerpted from Francie's Monadnock Ledger Transcript "Backyard Birder" column, April 30.

                                         For a much more comprehensive treatment of the issue, access and read the entire Transcript

                                        column: (www.ledgertranscript.com/home/16689860-95/bobcats-to-hunt-or-not-that-is-the-question

                                    

     May 4, ...........        I'd seen it before: This morning I noticed the earth moving again. In the flower bed, darker clumps of

                                     soil were being pushed up by (apparently) a mole. I stood directly over the excavation site for a while,

                                     but I never spotted the digger.  I immediately thought of the 1966 semi-classic Hammer Film Company

                                     horror film "Plague of the Zombies." In it there is a creepy dream sequence showing same undeads 

                                     wriggling and rising from their unholy graves. We just cannot prevent certain memory flashbacks,

                                     can we ?   ..... Neal Clark, Hancock

 

      May 4, ............       A single but distinctive "wok" call of a black-crowned night heron just after sunset topped off a very

                                      good day for new arrivals in our yard. between a half-hour this morning and about the same amount

                                      of time this evening, we tallied 7 species of warblers including first of the year blackburnian and

                                      Nashville.  Scanning nearby Powder Mill Pond this evening from Route 202 produced 2 greater yellow-

                                      legs on the "mudflats" and an adult bald eagle overhead.  ..... Phil Brown, Hancock

 

      May 6, .............      Loud and discordant squawking led me to a large nest in a pine tree where an adult Common Raven

                                      was feeding young within 30 feet of a busy trail with high traffic of walkers, runners and cyclists. I

                                      only saw one baby but the noise makes me think there were more. Later I watched another adult fly

                                      towards the nest with food in its beak. It flew down the pathway, then turned into the woods on the

                                      opposite side of the nest. It later approached the nest quietly, but the young'uns betrayed it with

                                      their excitement. This is the first Raven nest I have observed in a tree. The others have been on

                                      structures or cliffs.   ......  Rich Frechette, Peterborough

 

      May 8, ............       Another item from the Yogi Berra "You Can Observe a Lot by Looking" Files -  This morning I had just

                                      poured a cup of coffee and happened to glance out the kitchen window. There, walking calmly across

                                      the back yard was a small female bobcat.  She walked north towards the edge of the house where

                                      something in the road in front of the house caught her attention and she became alert and crouched

                                      down peering in the direction of the road. After a couple of minutes she relaxed and rolled over on her

                                      side in a relaxed sprawl.  Another couple of minutes passed,  with me standing absolutely still so as

                                      not to catch her attention. She then got up and walked back across the yard in the direction from

                                      which she came. She moved into the sunlight and was only 40-50 feet away. Her coat, which initially

                                      appeared a fairly uniform tannish brown became more distinctive and a mottled spotted undercoat

                                      pattern became more apparent in the direct sunlight. She moved slowly and casually across the yard

                                      I finally lost sight of her as she moved towards the roadway to the south of the house and walked

                                      behind a stone wall near the roadway.  In all, I was able to observe her for about 15 minutes.  While 

                                      she was sprawled out on the ground, I was able to get a good look at her belly and it did not appear

                                      that she was nursing. Her generally casual manner and lack of any apparent rush to return anywhere 

                                      seemed to point to a lack of a youngster in the picture. .....  Always a nice way to start the day. 

                                         ......  Chuck Schmidt, Hancock

 

      May 9, .............      Early Spring Flowers - Spring is moving on quickly now and the warmer temperatures are bringing

                                      out the flowers and tree leaves. Trilliums (Trillium erectus) couldn't seem to make up their mind for a

                                      while but now here they are in all their glory. The red or purple trillium is also called "stinking Benjamin" 

                                      because of its less than heavenly scent. "Benjamin," according to the Adirondack Almanac, is actually

                                      a corruption of the word benjoin, which was an ingredient that came from a plant in Sumatra and was

                                      used in the manufacture of perfume. Apparently it looked a lot like trillium.  Whatever you call it, its hard

                                      to say that purple trillium flowers aren't beautiful. Just don't get close enough to smell them. It's almost

                                      time to say goodbye to some of my favorite springtime friends like spring beauties (Claytonia virginica).

                                      Their time is brief and maybe that's why they are so loved by so many.  Maybe absence really does

                                      make the heart grow fonder, but I doubt that I would like them any less if they stayed all summer.   They

                                      are beautiful little things and seeing a forest floor carpeted with them is a breathtaking sight that you

                                      won't forget.    ....  Allen Norcross, Jaffrey

                                          This is just a thin sliver of Allen's post on Early NH Spring Wildflowers from his blog/website: "New

                                       Hampshire Garden Solutions". Access the site to read the rest of this post and others which highlight

                                       numerous New Hampshire May wildflowers. Allen's posts are always accompanied by his beautiful

                                       photographic images.  A visit and a half an hour of reading, absorbing his informative descriptions,

                                       and observing his images, is the equivalent of a university level in-service course on one aspect of

                                       New Hampshire natural history.  (https://nhgardensolutions.wordpress.com/2015/05/) One visit and

                                       I guarantee you will become a regular !  ..... CS

 

      May 11, ...........      With the weather finally turning the corner, I found it was once again time for my "highly ritualized,

                                       ceremonial inaugural lawn mow" of the season. This endeavor, a yearly rite of early May, begins with

                                       me spreading my "prayer rug" (the heavy duty, blue  poly-plastic tarp, winter mower cover) on the

                                       ground in  the back yard, prostrating myself, facing just south of the west point on the horizon

                                       (azimuth 260 degrees), the direction of the John Deere Corporate Headquarters in Moline, Illinois, 

                                       and chanting selected passages from my LX320 Riding Mower's Operator's Manual, hopefully, to 

                                       insure a mechanically trouble free summer mowing season.  During the ensuing mow, I was just a 

                                       bit disappointed to find two "frost heaved" rocks  on the property which would have to be addressed

                                       to make the mowing process a bit easier. This phenomenon has plagued New England farmers and

                                       gardeners for generations. Of course, three days later, the dandelions had regrown some 8-10 inches

                                       and the lawn was ready for another trim. Too bad dandelions don't have a corporate headquarters.

                                            ..... Chuck Schmidt, Hancock

 

      May 12, ...........      At my feeder this morning two male Rose Breasted Grosbeaks were squabbling with a male Cardinal.

                                      Also at my feeder are Pine Siskins, Goldfinches, Tufted Titmouse and a Hairy Woodpecker that manages

                                      to get seed out of the feeder tubes.  Feeding in my yard are some Chipping Sparrows. There were two

                                      pairs of Purple Finches around for a while. I don't know if they have left or my timing in seeing them is 

                                      off.  Late this afternoon a flock of 10 Blue jays showed up with one of the Rose Breasted Grosbeaks. He

                                      managed to get some seed even though he was surrounded by a lot of Jays. ..... Steve Smith, Hancock                               

 

      May 12, ...........      Finally getting out to do some spring clean-up around the house, I have noticed a very large number

                                      of "mole hills" all over the property.  Normally, every year or two we see some mole activity in the spring

                                      but never this amount. There must be twenty to thirty of these 6- 8 inch high dirt piles scattered all over

                                      the property.  Again, normally when we see these there are 4- 5 and usually in some sort of a linear

                                      pattern. This year they are  scattered randomly all over the front, side and back yard lawn areas.

                                          ..... Ed Steele, Keene

 

       May 12, ...........     Final Field Report From the 2015 Spring Amphibian Migration -  It's mid-May, it's been a long

                                      time since we've had any sustained evening rains, and it's downright hot out.  Wood frog eggs are

                                      nearing hatch, and after this extended dry spell, it's likely that any spotted salamanders who didn't

                                      make their way to vernal pools in April will simply wait until next year to breed.  However, you might

                                      just see some homeward bound spotted salamanders, along with many migrating American toads

                                      and gray tree frogs during evening rains or thunderstorms over the next few weeks. In addition, 

                                      warm-weather frogs and toads will be out and about in the rain all summer long. The "Salamander 

                                      Brigades" helped over 4,700 amphibians along their journeys this spring.  ...... Brett Amy Thelen, Keene   

                                          Check out the complete 2015 Field Reports from the 2015 Amphibian Migration at the AVEO website:

                                      www.aveo.org/2015/04/13/field-reports-from-the-2015-amphibian-migration/    .... CS

 

      May 14, ...........      "This spring as it comes bursts up in bonfires green,

                                       wild puffing of emerald trees, and flame filled bushes,

                                       thorn-blossom lifting in wreathes of smoke between

                                       where the wood fume up and the watery, flickering rushes.

                                       I am amazed at this spring, this conflagration

                                       of green fires lit on the soil of the earth, this blaze

                                       of growing, and sparks that puff in wild gyration,

                                       faces of people streaming across my gaze."

                                            .....  D.H. Lawrence, The Enkindled Spring.   

                                                   submitted by Ellen Taylor, Rindge

 

      May 18, ...........      While still preliminary, it appears the 2015 moose spring mortality rate will be even higher than last 

                                       year according to state wildlife officials.  Shorter winters are being cited for the proliferation of winter

                                       ticks in the northern part of the state, which literally suck the life blood out of the moose. In the south,

                                       the moose are plagued by another, even more lethal  parasite- brainworm - which is carried by the

                                       burgeoning deer population. Winter ticks - tens of thousands of which can infest a single moose -

                                       were responsible for the deaths of more than 60% of calves and 5% of adults that were part of a study

                                       of what's driving down moose numbers. The 2015 mortality rate is a bit higher than last year,  which

                                       is a bit curious because the 2014-15 winter lasted a bit longer than the average winter.  Although

                                       brainworm is a different kettle of fish, its prevalence is thought to also be impacted by shorter winters.

                                       The shorter winters are good for the increased survival of white-tail deer whose population densities

                                       have been climbing steadily and are now reaching about 10 - 13 per square mile. Nationally, there

                                       seems to be a direct correlation between high deer populations in an area and decrease in moose.

                                       The state's moose population peaked at 7,600 in 1996 and is now down to around 4,000.

                                             ..... John Kozol, Manchester 

                                        

      May 19, ...........      The area eagles appear to be faring well; today I saw a female apparently still incubating at the old

                                       lakeside aerie. Her mate was perched close by. Even at a distance of a few hundred yards, those

                                       white heads stood out against the pine-green background.  .... Neal Clark, Hancock

 

      May 20, ...........      Ode Opener - 2015 Version - The ode season ids off to its usual slow start in the Monadnock Region.

                                      Ten days ago I noticed a single yellow (i.e. an immature male or female) Hudsonian Whiteface. The

                                       next day I saw another single individual. By the end of the week there were dozens of individuals

                                       sunning themselves in the driveway and on the road and a few of the males were beginning to

                                       turn red. Small numbers of Chalk-fronted Corporals had also appeared. This past weekend, I

                                       observed a couple of Hudsonian Whiteface mating wheels on the wing. Thus, the season progresses.

                                          ..... Frank Gorga, Antrim

                                               Be sure to check out Frank's other blog posts and his beautiful accompanying images at his

                                             website  Photographs by Frank   www.gorga.org/blog/

 

      May 21, ...........      Next to the Green Frog, the Pickerel Frog is the most abundant frog in new England. It is often

                                      confused with the Northern leopard Frog, which it closely resembles. The spots on a Pickerels Frog's

                                      back are squarish and aligned in rows, where a Leopard Frog's spots are rounded, and randomly

                                      scattered over its back. In addition, the male Pickerel Frog has bright orange on the inner surface of

                                      its hind legs, which the Leopard Frog lacks. Recently male Pickerel frogs have started calling to attract

                                      mates. Each species of frog, just like each species of bird, has its own distinctive call.  Spring Peepers

                                      "peep", Wood Frogs "quack" and Pickerel Frogs "snore". Their snore isn't long - it lasts only a

                                      second or two - but it is unmistakable. Pickerel Frogs call from underwater, as well as on top of mounds

                                      of vegetation, so if you hear one and then search for it, you may not find it.  ..... Mary Holland, Hartland, Vt.

                                          Visit Mary's website "Naturally Curious With Mary Holland" to read her regular regional natural history

                                      posts and view her accompanying photography.  Another "addictive site" for regional naturalists. One

                                      visit and you are "hooked".     .... CS

 

      May 22, ...........      When I saw vole tunnels in the snow last winter, I noticed that some seemed to be converging on

                                      shrubs I had planted in the backyard. Sure enough, now that spring is here, I find that voles have

                                      killed a couple of small shrubs by chewing off the bark.  Monadnock Berries also reports "serious vole

                                      damage due to the snow. The voles chewed the bark and killed the plants." (gooseberry and currant

                                      bushes). However, my shrubs seemed to have suffered less deer damage over the winter, and I saw

                                      fewer deer tracks, perhaps due to the heavy snow. I haven't seen any deer yet in my area either, which

                                      could be due to the severe winter.   ..... Bruce Boyer, Jaffrey 

 

      May 25, ............     Engaging in the rite of lawn mowing is fruitless in late May, given the usual ample rain and heat. The

                                      dandelions in my yard are back in bloom within two days of any cutting.  The truth is, I kind of like the

                                      dandelions, but if that's too much to stomach for the lawn manicurists among you, you might at least

                                      respect your nemesis. Dandelions are escape artists extraordinaire. Their leaves lay flattened along the

                                      ground, immune to mower blades. The period when the flower and seed head open is the only time

                                      in a dandelion's life when it becomes vulnerable to the guillotine. If you don't get the flower head

                                      immediately with the mower, the flower stalk soon becomes flaccid and collapses to the ground where

                                      it's safe once again. The when the seed head is ready, the dandelion springs back to life in a growth

                                      spurt of five to six inches that occurs within a day or two.  Even if you manage to get the first bloom,

                                      the plant will simply produce another bud and flower again. Dandelions were originally adapted to

                                      barnyards and pastures, where their thistle-like leaves and bitter white sap made them distasteful

                                      to cattle.  Lawns have provided an even better habitat. What's the best way to rid yourself of the

                                      dandelion madness ?  Let your grass grow long.  Grass hugging plants like dandelions can't tolerate

                                      shade, so they will soon become a rare flower in your yard. Skeptical ?  Compare their numbers in

                                      unmown meadows to manicured lawns.  ..... John Bates, A Northwoods Companion: Spring and Summer

 

      May 27, ............    At around 5 AM my dog growled and I noticed a black bear just outside our living room window here in

                                      Hancock. She hung around for a couple of minutes and then walked behind our house. Much to my

                                      amazement there were three others, apparently cubs, waiting for her.  All four then walked off slowly

                                      into the woods. While I've seen a mother and one cub in the past, I've never seen four at one time.

                                         ..... Gil Malnati, Hancock

                                             Actually, according to the research, litters of three are very common in the eastern United States.

                                         Western black bears generally have smaller litters, probably due to a lesser availability of food

                                          supplies.  For some additional information on the  North American black bear reproductive cycle

                                          and litter size, visit:  www.bear.org/website/bear-pages/black-bear/reproduction.html

 

      May 31, ..............   Some New Hampshire natural history articles well worth the effort of tracking down this month: 

                                        

                                            New Hampshire Wildlife Journal, New Hampshire Fish & Game Magazine -  May/June 2015 

                                                        - Wonderful Wood Warblers,  Ellen Snyder

                                                        - The Mysterious Saw-whet Owl,  Lindsay Webb

                                             Northern Woodlands Magazine - Spring 2015

                                                        - How Beavers Recycle Tree Defenses,  Dietland Muller-Schwartz

                                                        - The Great Forest Migration,  Benjamin Lord

                                                        - Declining Moose Populations: What Does the Future Hold ?,  Susan C. Morse

                                                        - The Overstory: Red Pine,  Virginia Barlow

                                              Northern Woodlands Magazine - Summer 2015

                                                        - 200 Million Years and Counting: An Illustrated Introduction

                                                          t o Some of Our Region's Turtles,  Lauren diBiccari

                                                        - The Overstory: Striped Maple,  Virginia Barlow

                                      

                                       Many of these articles can be found in your local library or by GOOGLING the title, and/or the  

                                       magazine title and date.  The easier option is to give youself and a nature loving friend or relative

                                       a gift subscription and have the publication automatically show up in your mailbox.  ..... CS

                                                         

 

 

 

 

 

         MONADNOCK MUSINGS                            

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       

                                       

                                                                    A Tiny Bird, A Long Journey and Blind Faith   -    Dave Anderson

 

 

                                                It never fails to amaze me when the first ruby-throated hummingbird returns to the front porch

                                          where we hang a sugar water feeder in late spring.  The visitor squeaks, circles, hovers and then

                                          approaches my face, making eye contact with his little tilted head before vanishing in a whir and

                                          blur of tiny wings. The message is unmistakable: "Dude, where is my nectar feeder ?"

 

                                               This tiny bird, small as a mouse, just returned from southern Mexico - a journey of a thousand

                                          miles - without the aid of weather forecasts, maps or GPS satellite navigation. During its entire

                                          spring migratory journey it kept my front porch pillar fixed in its innate onboard navigational system 

                                          as the ultimate destination.  "Recalculating" is necessary when I imagine if I had to make the same

                                          trip. The least I can do is offer him a sugary cocktail reward.  

 

                                                 Migration is amazing! Hundreds of thousands of colorful tropical songbirds have now returned

                                          from wintering in Central and South America and the Caribbean islands. On warm southwest

                                          winds they pour into northern forests, farms and suburban backyards to devour the hatching

                                          blackflies. It is no coincidence that New Hampshire is a preferred summer destination for breeding                                        

                                          Northern birds co-evolved timing of the breeding seasons to take advantage of both insect

                                          protein and fruit carbohydrates. Their nesting season is closely timed to flower nectar, an explosion                                      

                                          of insect protein and the sugary fruits our region provides for raising chicks. It's worth the hazards

                                          of the long migration because insect protein fuels building nests, incubating eggs and feeding

                                          vulnerable chicks. Plant carbohydrates from native fruits and berries provide the fuel to form flight

                                          feathers fast ! Even for birds, New Hampshire is a great place to raise a family.

 

                                                  Ruby-throated hummingbirds are the only breeding hummingbirds in the Northeast.  The

                                          species occupies the largest breeding range of any North American hummingbird.  Ruby-throated

                                          hummingbirds beat their wings 53 times per second. While it is an extremely agile flyer, its short legs

                                          prevent it from walking or hopping. Males do not remain with females for long. Breeding pairs remain

                                          together for courtship and mating which generally last several days to several weeks. Adults begin

                                          their fall migration south by early August.

 

                                                   Your backyard was also likely lodged in the navigational memory sector of tropical migrant bird

                                          brains. When they arrive, they expect to find summer homes undiminished after such a long journey.

                                          You don't want to disappoint your winged summer guests !  Perhaps we owe them some duty of care                 

                                          and courtesy after they've traveled hundreds of miles. That blind faith exhibited by my hummingbird

                                          friend creates the responsibility for me to fulfill. He trusts his natal nesting territory awaits him .... and

                                          maybe even sugar solution in that hanging nectar feeder too !

 

                                                  Excerpted from one of Dave's "Forest Journal" essays which appear every other week in the 

                                                  New Hampshire Sunday News . Dave is the Director of Education and Volunteer Services for

                                                  the Society of the Protection of New Hampshire Forests. Follow Dave's writings there and in

                                                  the SPNHF's quarterly magazine "Forest Notes".   

 

 

 

 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     .                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              

    MONADNOCK SKIES -  For June 2015 

 

           

        June, .......          June - Late Spring, Early Summer Skies -  Early in June, Arcturus, in the constellation Bootes, 

                                       will be visible in near the Meridian at around 9 PM.  By mid month, the three bright summer stars of the  

                                        "Summer Triangle",  Vega and Deneb and Altair  are visible moving higher and higher in the

                                       eastern sky.  Monadnock skywatchers with a good view of the southern horizon will be able to

                                       see the constellation Scorpio moving steadily towards the meridian, low in the sky.  By month's end

                                       its bright Alpha star Antares will be on the Meridian around 9 PM.  The constellation Sagittarius with

                                       its distinctive "teapot" shape will be right behind.

 

        June, .......           The Planets This Month  -  Venus, shining with a magnitude of - 4.4 continues to dominate the

                                        western sky after sunset.  It reaches its "greatest elongation" from the sun, approximately 45 degrees,

                                        on June 6th. Since the earth's eastward rotation of 15 degrees per hour, causes the planets, stars and 

                                        constellations to move westward across the sky at that rate, this means that Venus will set in the

                                        west, some 3 hours after the sun.  Jupiter, shining at magnitude - 1.9, is also located in the western sky

                                        above  Venus.  The two planets slowly approach each other during the month. Don't miss their

                                        spectacular pairing in the early evening sky after sunset on the 30th when they will be about 1/3 of a                                       

                                        degree apart, easily visible in the field of view of binoculars or a small telescope.  Venus will appear

                                        as a crescent, one third full.  Jupiter will exhibit its cloud bands in a small telescope. Also easily visible 

                                        will be the four brightest Jovian satellites (Galilean) with the brightest Ganymede east of the planet and

                                        Io, Europa and Callisto to the west.  Saturn is still visible in the morning sky before dawn.                                        

 

        June 1,                  Venus Aligns with Castor and Pollux in the Early Evening Sky -  About an hour to an hour and

                                        a quarter after sunset, the planet Venus, shining brightly at magnitude - 4.4, is found in the WNW sky

                                        just to the left (south) of Pollux and Castor, the two brightest stars in the constellation Gemini.  Pollux is

                                        closest to Venus with Castor just to the right.  Jupiter is in the same region about 20 degrees to the upper

                                        left of Venus. Jupiter shines brightly at magnitude - 1.9.  Jupiter will be drawing closer and closer to Venus

                                        as the month progresses. On June 30th they will only be one third of a degree apart.

                                       

        June 2, ........         Bright International Space Station Passage -  Tonight, weather permitting, Monadnock skywatchers                                        

                                        will have an opportunity to observe a bright  passage of the International Space Station (ISS) across our 

                                        early evening skies.  The ISS will appear low in the WSW at about 9:49 PM. The satellite, appearing as a

                                        bright starlike object, will move higher in the sky, reaching its greatest altitude of 60 degrees in the NNW.

                                        As it climbs higher in the sky, it will pass between the bright planet Jupiter and the "Sickle" of the

                                        constellation Leo the Lion. It will shine with a magnitude of - 2.7 when it reaches its highest point at about

                                        9:52 PM. It will then move downward, passing just to the NW of the "bowl" of the Big Dipper before

                                        being lost from view near the horizon at 9:55 PM.

                                        .

        June 3, ..........        Second Bright International Space Station Passage - To view this passage, weather permitting,

                                        face the SW a minute or two before the ISS scheduled appearance at 8:56 PM. The ISS will appear as a

                                        starlike object moving upward in the sky, It will pass near the tail of Leo the Lion as it moves toward its

                                        highest point of 77 degrees above the horizon in the SE at about 8:59 PM. At that point it will be shining at

                                        a magnitude of - 3.4, about a bright as the ISS ever appears.  It will pass very near the star Vega before

                                        moving lower in the sky and disappearing from view in the ENE at about 9:02 PM.                     

                            

        June 2, ..........       Full Moon - The Flower Moon - An obvious choice for the nickname of the May Full Moon. Also

                                        known as the "Corn Planting Moon" and the "Milk Moon".

                  

        June 9, ........        Last Quarter Moon

                                       

       June 16, .......       New Moon

 

        June 17, ........       Very Young Crescent Moon - Try and spot the 1 day old new crescent moon very close to the horizon

                                        in the WNW.  To make this observation with binoculars you need a very clear sky and an unobstructed

                                        view of the horizon.  Not an easy task.  This is the earliest one can spot the cresent . Easier tomorrow

                                        night.

 

        June 21, .......        The Summer Solstice - Today marks the official start of Summer in the northern hemisphere as the sun 

                                        reaches its elevation in the noontime sky. Officially at 12:29 PM EDT.  At this point it "pauses" before

                                        beginning is southward trip, lowering its noontime elevation each day until it reaches its lowest elevation

                                        in December at the Winter Solstice.  The word Solstice is derived from two Latin words, "sol" (sun) and

                                        and "stitium" (to stop), reflecting the "pause" in the northward migration at noon today.   

 

       June 24, .......        First Quarter Moon

 

       June 30, .......       Spectacular Pairing of Venus and Jupiter in the Western Twilight Sky - See "The Planets This         

                                          Month.

 

 

 

   MONADNOCK REGION NATURAL HISTORY EVENTS CALENDAR -  June  2015                  

 

 

                                          The Natural History Events Calendar lists activities, walks, classes, and programs in, and within 

                                            reasonable driving distance of,  the Monadnock Region.  Organizations are encouraged to list their

                                            events that are open to members and non-members alike. Events must be submitted before the

                                            end of the month preceding the one in which the events are scheduled.

 

 

      June 3, ..........  Invasive Plant Species Talk - The Chamberlin Free Public Library, Greenville, hosts a presentaion on

                                 invasive upland species by Douglas Cygan of the New Hampshire Department of Agriculture on Wed. at

                                 7 PM.  Learn about the various issues: NH rules and regulations; identifying features, characteristics, and

                                 control measures of some of the more aggressive, non-native plants in the Granite State.

                        

     June 4, ..........  Tour of New England Wood Pellet -  The Harris Center manages almost 8,500 acres of wildlife, people,

                                 and forest prducts. The latter may include the pellets that fuel your wood stove, Join us for a tour of

                                 New England Wood Pellet, New England's oldest and largest manufacturer of wood pellets. This tour of

                                 their Jaffrey facility is limited to the first 15 individuals to register. Meet at the Harris Center at 9:30 AM to

                                 carpool. Back by noon. For more information, contact Eric Masterson (603) 525-3394

 

     June 5, ..........  Easy Going Hike to Converse Meadow -   An easy, 3 mile hike through the hemlock and hardwood

                                 groves of Converse Meadow in Rindge. Protected by a conservation easement held by the Monadnock

                                 Conservancy, Converse Meadow lies in the path of the proposed Kinder Morgan pipeline. Bring water and

                                 lunch and meet at 10 AM in the parking area beside Ocean State Job Lot in Peterborough to carpool. Back

                                 by 3 PM. For more information, contact Lee Baker (603) 5215-5262,  Ollie Mutch (978) 386-5318, or Ryan

                                 Owens (603) 357-0600.  Harris Center Program.

 

     June 5, ..........  Nature's Play - Session One - Join Harris Center naturalist Susie Spikol Farber and folk heritage 

                                 musician Mary DeRosiers for three Fridays in June to explore the secret nooks and crannies of the Harris

                                 Center's grounds. We'll sing, dance and share stories of the animals and plants we'll find. These afternoons

                                 will be child-led, and all about free play in the outdoors, regardless of the weather. Make a mud pie, dance

                                 a reel, peel a walking stick, sing a song, catch a frog, make some music, and hum to a snail.  Parents can

                                 stay and play. too. Fridays, June 5, 12, and 19, from 3:30 to 5 PM at the Harris Center. for children from 4

                                 through 7.  $30 Harris Center members/ $50 for nonmembers. Preregistration is required. Contact Sara

                                 Lefebvre at (603) 525-3394 or lefebvre@harriscenter.org

 

      June 5, ..........  Froggie Went A'Courtin' Family Campfire - For families of all ages. Join folk heritage musician Mary

                                 DeRosiers and naturalist Susie Spikol Farber for a night around the campfire as we sing and share stories

                                 of frogs and their froggie ways. If weather permits, we'll have a real campfire in the parking lot of the

                                 Hancock Town Library, If it's raining like frogs and toads, we'll meet in the Daniels Room for our evening's

                                 entertainment.  From 7- 8 PM at the Hancock Town Library. No charge. To register, contact Sara LeFebvre.

                                 Cosponsored by the Harris Center and the Hancock Town Library.

 

      June 6, ..........   Bird Watching Program - Distant Hill Gardens -   Expert birder Wendy Ward will lead a leisurely walk

                                  through the forests and fields of Distant Hill Gardens in search of our avian friends. We will be looking for 

                                  interesting species as well as learning how to identify some of the birds by their songs.  8 AM to 10 AM at

                                  Distant Hill Gardens, 507 March Hill Road, Walpole,  A $5 per person fee is requested. For a description of

                                  other Distant Hill Gardens programs this summer: www.distanthillgardens.org/2015-events/ 

                      

     June 6, ..........   Invasive Plant Workday at the Harris Center - Join UNH Cooperative extension Forestry Specialist

                                  Karen Bennett for a morning of hands-on learning about invasive plants. After a brief introduction to

                                  Invasive plant management, we'll get to work cutting and pulling the invasives that plague the Harris

                                  Center's back field - primarily Oriental Bittersweet and Autumn Olive. Bring work gloves an loppers, or

                                  use the Harris Center's tools.  10 AM to noon at the Harris Center. For more information cantact Brett Amy

                                  Thelen (603) 358-2065. Cosponsored with UNH Cooperative Extension.

 

      June 10, ..........  Fish Survey at Falls Brook -  A new, fish-friendly culvert on Hale Road in Swanzey will soon re-connect

                                   more than 20 miles of stream habitat for wild brook trout, dace, and other aquatic wildlife. Join John Magee,

                                   Fish Habitat Biologist with NH Fish and game, to learn more about this exciting restoration project during

                                   a pre-construction fish survey at the restoration site. 3:30 to 5 PM at Falls Brook in Swanzey. (Rain date is

                                   June 11) Space is limited and pre-registration is required. For more information or to register, contact

                                   Brett Amy Thelen. Cosponsored by the Harris Center, Cheshire Conservation District, Trout Unlimited,

                                   NHF&G, and the Town of Swanzey.

 

      June 10, .........   Nubanusit Lake and Spoonwood Pond Paddle - Hancock and Nelson, NH.  Spoonwood Pond is

                                   about as good as it gets, quiet, secluded, inaccessible by car and off-limits to motorboats.  With cool, clear

                                   waters and granite slab shoreline it's a great place to paddle, picnic and swim.  We access Spoonwood

                                   Pond by launching in to Nubanusit Lake and paddle a short distance to a short carry into Spoonwood.

                                   Nubanusit traffic can be heavy, even during the week, so we'll spend very little time on the lake. Eagle

                                   sightings are common on this trip. We'll meet at  9 AM in the Hannaford's parking lot on Putney Road in

                                   Brattleboro to carpool.  Parking space is very limited at the lake put-in. Paddlers coming from NH are

                                   welcome to meet us at the Nubanusit Lake put-in in Hancock at 10 AM.  Brattleboro Outing Club. Learn

                                   more about the club and its many other outings scheduled for the upcoming summer and fall paddling

                                   season at:   www.brattleborooutingclub.org/paddling-schedule-2/

 

      June 10, ..........   Beaver Workshop - Matt Tarr, Wildlife Specialist with the UNH Cooperative Extension, will lead this field

                                    workshop on beaver ecology, biology, and habitat requirements. We'll visit a local beaver impoundment,

                                    and discuss flood control options. Departs from the Harris Center at 7 PM sharp. Back by 9 PM. For more                     

                                    information, contact Eric Masterson at (603) 525-3394.

.

     June 12, ...........  Evening Paddle on Howe Reservoir - Tom Warren will lead an easy evening paddle on Howe

                                    Reservoir, with a focus on birds. We'll look for Loons as we enjoy the evening vespers of our most

                                    beautiful songsters, including the Veery and Wood Thrush. Bring your own boat and meet at the Route

                                    101 parking area opposite Howe reservoir in Dublin. Back by 9 PM. Pre-registration is required. To

                                    register, contact Tom at (603) 563-7190.

 

     June 13, ...........  Trail Maintenance on the Harriskat Trail - Join trail chief Jim Orr for a morning of moderately easy

                                     trail work, clearing branches and small blow downs from the Harriskat Trail. All ages and abilities are

                                     welcome.  Bring gloves and loppers, or use the Harris Center's tools. Meet at 9 AM at the Harris Center,

                                     Back by noon. For more information, contact Jim (603) 924-6934.  Harris Center program.

 

      June 13, ............  Biking the Rail Trail from Fitzwilliam to Winchendon -  Join Russ Daigle and Brian Bishoff for a

                                     moderately easy 25 mile roundtrip bike ride along the Cheshire Rail Trail from Fitzwilliam to Winchendon

                                     and back. Bring water and lunch for a picnic on Winchendon Common. Meet at 10 AM at the Fitzwilliam

                                     Depot on Route 119. Back by 3 PM. For more information, contact Russ (603) 477-7506 or Brian (603)

                                     899-5770. Harris Center program.

 

      June 13, ............  Poetry on the Trail with Poet and Forester Swift Corwin - Join us for an early morning hike

                                     through the Welch Farm Forest off Route 123 in Hancock. We'll take a slow and easy ramble with a

                                     number of stops along the way. At each stop, Swift Corwin will read poetry in the spirit of the day. We'll

                                     travel a long way, but maybe not very far in actual distance. Bring water, and meet at 10 AM at the Welch

                                     Farm trailhead on Route 123 in Hancock. Back by 11 AM. For more information, contact Swift (603) 562-

                                     5620. Cosponsored by the Harris Center and the Hancock Town Library.

 

      June 14, ............  Hiroshi Land Celebration - Last May, the Harris Center and the Peterborough Conservation

                                     Commission protected more than 100 acres of land adjacent to Nubanusit Brook. Join us for a

                                     celebration of the project, followed by a walk along Nubanusit Brook on the Harris Center's newest

                                     trail.  Bring water, and meet at 10 AM at the Hiroshi land, 2,1 miles north of Carr's Store on the east side

                                     of Route 137.Back by 1 PM. For more information, contact Eric Masterson (603) 525-3394. Harris Center

                                     program.

 

      June 16, ............  Mountain Laurel Walk - Naturalist Roger Haydock will guide a walk through Madame Sherri Forest

                                     in New Hampshire to Indian Pond which is ringed with mountain laurel. Directions from Brattleboro:

                                     cross into NH on Route 9. take the first right (Mountain Road) then the first left (Gulf Road). The parking

                                     area will be about 2 miles on the right. There's also a Kiosk for Madame Sherri Forest. Meet  there at 

                                     6 PM.  Southeastern Vermont Audubon Society program.

 

      June 17, ............  Vermont's Rattlesnakes - Doug Blodgett, Wildlife Biologist with the Vermont Fish and Wildlife Dept.

                                     Doug has worked extensively on game and non-game management programs. He was the leader of the

                                     Wild Turkey Project team and assisted on the deer, black bear, moose, fur-bearer, and peregrine falcon

                                     research projects. Most recently, Doug's professional interest has focused on reptiles, and specifically,

                                     rare snake research in Vermont.  Program at 7 PM at the Brooks Memorial Library in Brattleboro, Vt.

                                     Southeastern Vermont Audubon Society program.

 

      June 20, ............  StoryWalk on the Cranberry Meadow Pond Trail in Peterborough - Come walk along a short

                                     section of this town-to-mountaintop trail as it winds its way through meadowland. Pages from the story

                                     "Butterfly Eyes and Other Secrets of the Meadow," written by Joyce Sinclair, and illustrated by award

                                     winning Peterborough artist Beth Krommes, will be laid out along the self-guided trail for you to read as

                                     you go. Join the walk anytime between 10 AM and 2 PM on Saturday, June 20, Cosponsored by the Harris

                                     Harris Center and the Monadnock Conservancy. For more information, contact Susie Spikol Farber

                                     (603) 525-3394.  Harris Center program.

 

      June 21, ..........   Hike to Royalston Falls - Join Denny Wheeler and Russ Daigle for a moderately easy, 4 mile round

                                     trip hike on the Monadnock-Metacomet Trail along Tully Brook, ending at scenic Royalston Falls. Bring

                                     water and lunch, and meet at 9 AM at Richmond Four Corners (at the intersection of Routes 32 and 119

                                     in Richmond) to carpool. Back by 1 PM. For more information, contact Denny (6030 313-0350 or Russ

                                     (603) 477-7506. Harris Center program.

                                 

     June 27-28, ......  Gilsum Rock Swap and Mineral Show - 50th Annual Show to be held rain or shine. More than 65 

                                     dealers and swappers, with gems, jewelry and minerals for sale or trade in a scenic southwestern NH

                                     setting. Pan for minerals, enjoy an old fashioned New England ham and bean dinner with homemade

                                     pies. Sit down for a chicken barbeque lunch and more. Special presentations: Rock Hounding in New

                                     England, Nancy Swing. Hours: 8 AM to 6 PM Saturday, June 27,  8 AM to 4 PM Sunday, June 28.  At the

                                     Gilsum Elementary School and Community Center, 640 Route 10 in Gilsum. Check out  all of the

                                     information about the event and associated activities at  www.gilsum.org/rockswap

 

 

 

      MONADNOCK NATURAL HISTORY RESOURCES  

 

 

                        .............  Guide to the Wapack Trail - Friends of the Wapack Trail (2015).  A comprehensive guide to 

                                       the entire Wapack Trail, Side Trail and it's Environs. The Wapack Trail is a 21 mile long skyline

                                       footpath from Mount Watatic an Ashburnham, Massachusets to Pack Monadnock in Greenfield.

                                       New Hampshire.  Completed in 1927, it is the oldest interstate trail in the northeast. This brand

                                       new guide contains an up to date trail description, a durable full-color trail map,  dozens of

                                       maps of suggested hikes and an extensive history of the trail.  Available at the Toadstool Book

                                       Stores in Keene and Peterborough.

 

                        ...........    Lichens of the North Woods -  Joe Walewaki,  (2007)  Lichens are the unsung superheroes 

                                        of the northern wilds: they are tiny organisms that have the capability to dissolve solid granite.

                                        Lichens are surprisingly colorful; blazing oranges, radiant yellow, pastel greens, rich blacks

                                        and bright whites adorn tree trunks, bedrock and even gravestones. One hundred and twenty

                                        species are shown in beautiful color photos. 160 pages, loaded with informative natural history

                                        text.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   

                      ..........    Northern Woodlands Magazine - A quarterly magazine devoted to advancing forest

                                        stewardship in the northeast, and to increase the understanding of, and appreciation for, 

                                        the natural wonders,  economic productivity,  and ecological integrity of the region's forests.

                                        It always contain excellent natural history articles by prominent regional and national authors.

                                        Worth the subscription price alone for Virginia Barlow's Seasonal Natural History Calendar

                                        and her frequent articles. John Harrigan,  NH's iconic north country author, speaker,  weekly 

                                        columnist for numerous regional publications, once said "If I had to dump all but one of my

                                        periodical subscriptions, and that's plenty,  the survivor would be Northern Woodlands.  I'd

                                        put Northern Woodlands on the must-read list for anyone who lives, works in, cares about,

                                        or just visits New England. It has become the magazine I can simply cannot do without."

                                        (www.northernwoodlands.org)                                     

                                                                

                               ........ New Hampshire Wildlife Journal - Published bi-monthly by the New Hampshire Fish and

                                        Game Department.  Dedicated to creating an awareness and appreciation for the state's fish and

                                        wildlife and the habitats upon which they depend.  Always contains interesting and informative

                                        articles on regional flora and fauna and environmental issues. (www.WildNH.com)

 

                               ......... Forest Notes - The quarterly magazine of the Society for the Protection of New Hampshire

                                         Forests. The magazine includes selections dealing with Society properties, events, land  

                                         acquisition projects and frequently features articles on regional natural history.  Subscription is

                                         available with Society membership. Regularly features Dave Anderson's Natures View column.

                                         Dave, SPNH's Director of Education and Volunteer Services,  is a long time forest and wildlife

                                         naturalist, group field leader and is known for his prominence in regional land conservation and

                                         forest stewardship initiatives. Worth the price of membership for his essays alone. Information

                                         at:  (http://www.forest.org/news/forest-notes.asp)

                                    

                                ........ Field - New Hampshire Audubon's quarterly program and events guide.  The publication 

                                         features articles, programs, and activities offered at all of New Hampshire Audubon's centers

                                         and regional chapters throughout the state. The current issue and back issues are available at:

                                         (http://www.nhaudubon.org/programs/field)      

 

                                ........  Outdoor Guide - Antrim,and Bennington, New Hampshire -  The second edition of this 64 

                                          page guide has recently been made available through towns halls, libraries and a wide variety of

                                          business outlets throughout the northern Cheshire County region.  A wonderful resource, it contains

                                          a wealth of information on key nature destinations in the region, including hiking and biking trails,

                                          canoeing and kayaking opportunities, and a wide variety of other nature related activities. Also

                                                                

 

 

                                                     

  REGIONAL NATURAL HISTORY , RECREATIONAL, EDUCATIONAL, AND CONSERVATION ORGANIZATIONS

 

 

                                .......    Harris Center for Conservation Education.   Education, school programs, land

                                            and wildlife preservation, programs, hiking, weekend events.  Open year round.

                                            Mon.-Fri.  83 Kings Highway, Hancock, NH 03449.    www.Harris.org

 

                                 .......    New Hampshire Audubon Society.  A statewide organization, dedicated to the

                                            conservation of wildlife habitat . Programs in wildlife conservation, land protection,

                                            environmental policy, and environmental education.

                                            84 Silk Farm Road, Concord, NH.  www.nhaudubon.org

 

                                  .......  The Nature Conservancy.  A leading conservation organization working to protect

                                            ecologically important lands and waters in New Hampshire.  22 Bridge St., Concord,

                                            NH 03301  www.nature.org

 

                                   .......  Society for the Protection of New Hampshire Forests.  A leading statewide

                                            land conservation organization dedicated to protecting the state's most important

                                            landscapes while promoting  wise use of its renewable natural resources. www.spnhf.org

 

                                   ........ Monadnock Conservancy.  The Monadnock Conservancy's mission is to work with

                                            communities and landowners to conserve the natural resources, wild and working lands,

                                            rural character and scenic beauty of the Monadnock region.  Visit their website:                                        

                                    (www.monadnockconservancy.org)

 

                                   ........ New Hampshire Fish and Game Department.  Conserves, manages and protects

                                            New Hampshire's fish, wildlife, and marine resources. www.WildNH.com

 

                                    ....... Friends of Pisgah - A volunteer organization dedicated to assisting in the preservation

                                            of Pisgah State Park located in southwestern Cheshire County. The organization has been

                                            involved in the development and maintenance of the park's trail system for many years.

                                            www.friendsofpisgah.org/  or  (http://www.chesterfieldoutdoors.com/)

                                   

                                    ........Friends of the Wapack - an independent, non-profit organization composed of hikers,

                                            volunteers, and landowners dedicated to the preservation of the 21 mile long trail from Mt.

                                            Watatic in northern Mass. to North Pack here in New Hampshire. 

                                            (http://www.wapack.org/index.html)

 

                                   ........ Brattleboro Outing Club - The BOC offers an opportunity to participate in year-round

                                            outdoor activities including kayaking, canoe trips and cross country skiing. For additional

                                             information: (http://brattleborooutingclub.org)

    

                                   ........ Keene Mineral Club - Founded in 1948 the Keene Mineral Club is an active group of

                                            collectors of 100 or so members whose interests cover the full spectrum of mineral related

                                            topics: crystals, minerals, gems, lapidary, micromounts, fossils and more.  The club holds

                                            regular monthly meetings, publishes an award winning newsletter and sponsors frequent

                                            local and regional field trips.  Membership is encouraged for all ages and levels of interest.

                                             (http://sites.google.com/site/keenemineralclub/home)

 

                                   ....... Keene Amateur Astronomers Club -  Founded in 1957, the club has a goal of enhancement

                                            of Amateur Astronomy through fellowship, sharing knowledge and enjoyment of the hobby. The

                                            KAA holds monthly meetings, provides outreach programs, and holds regular viewing sessions

                                            at their own observatory. Membership is open to students, parents, beginners, backyard

                                            amateurs and experienced professionals. Meetings and observing sessions are open to all.

                                            (http://www.keeneastronomy.org/)

 

 

 

                                         

  MONADNOCK LINKS

 

 

                         ..........  NOAA National Weather Service Website - The NOAA Weather service website is by far the

                                     most detailed and informative source of local and regional weather information. Almost all of the

                                     other online weather websites and media outlets get their basic information from this source. 

                                     (http://www.nova.go)

 

                          ..........  Latitude and Longitude - To determine the exact Latitude and Longitude of a specific location,

                                      visit the website (http://touchpad.com/ladling.html). For a more detailed description of the

                                      information available on this website, see the January 2011 MAN.

 

                           .......... Topographic Maps - Free,  New Hampshire topographic maps are available for viewing or

                                       download by the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department.  (www.wildnh.com/maps)

 

                   .........  The New Hampshire Birding List - A website providing daily reports of sightings and

                                       comments from birdwatchers all over the state, with regular posts from the Monadnock Region.

                                       top birders.  (http://birdingonthe.net/mailing/NUB.html)

 

                           .........  New Hampshire Mountain Lions - John Ranta of Hancock, NH maintains a running blog which

                                      shares information on mountain lions in New Hampshire and reports sightings in the Granite State.

                                      (http://nhmountainlion.word.com/about/#comment-71)

 

                           .........   Rare Bird Alert - New Hampshire - A weekly listing of rare bird sightings throughout the

                                       state. Compiled each week by Mark Suomala.  The RBA is available in each Friday's edition of

                                       the Union Leader newspaper, as a phone recording (603) 224-9909, or from the New Hampshire  

                                       Audubon's website:  (http://www.nhaudubon.org/birding/rare-bird-alerts)

 

                            .........  New Hampshire Lightning Detection/Tracking System  -  This site provides a real-time

                                       radar map of lightning strikes occurring in the northeastern states. The map is refreshed every 

                                        5 minutes. The site also provides a wealth of other useful and interesting meteorological 

                                        information.  (http://www.nhweatherdata.com/lightning.html)

                                              

                             .........  Heavens Above -  A treasure trove of observational astronomy information. After registering

                                        and inputting your latitude and longitude, the site provides you with exact times, locations, and

                                        magnitudes of various satellites visible at your location. (http://www.heavens-above.com/)

 

                             .......... Google Earth - a free program which allows the viewer to travel anywhere on earth and view

                                        aerial and satellite imagery from great elevations to street level.  Many locations provide three

                                        dimensional, 360 degree opportunities for viewing. A must for the regional naturalist to view

                                        natural areas and to preview hiking trails, etc. (http://www.google.com/earth/index.html)

 

                             ........... Spaceweather.com - A worthwhile site for all sorts of astronomy related information,

                                         including auroral displays and alerts, solar activity (sunspots, flares, etc), planetary Info.,

                                         meteor showers. The site provides a sign-up option for a free e-mail Spaceweather Alert

                                         when something significant is occurring. (http://www.spaceweather.com/

 

                        ...........The Old Farmer's Almanac - Another general reference site for  regional weather, birding,

                                         fishing, astronomy and outdoor information. Provides an excellent table for the rising and setting

                                         times for the sun, moon and planets which may be selected for your particular town or village.

                                         (http://www.almanac,com

 

                              .......... Naturally Curious with Mary Holland - Follow the regional natural history scene throughout

                                         the year through the comments, images and insights of one of New England's premier naturalists.

                                         Mary's blog site should be a shortcut on the computer desktop of anyone interested in our natural

                                         world.  (http://naturallycuriouswithmaryholland.wordpress.com/)

 

                               .......... New Hampshire Mineral Species - This site is dedicated to the documentation and confirmation

                                          of New Hampshire mineral species. Developed and maintained by Tom Mortimer, the site contains a

                                          listing of 293 New Hampshire species with images of 259 of these species. The vast majority of the

                                          over 1100 images on the site are thumbnail and micromount sized specimen images were taken by

                                          Tom. (http://mindatnh.org)

 

                               ..........  Antrim - Bennington Outdoor Guide - A wonderful resource for outdoor locations and activities

                                           in the region (http://www.antrimnh.org/Pages/AntrimNH_WebDocs/Outdoor_Guide.pdf)

 

                               ..........  New Hampshire Garden Solutions: Exploring Nature in New Hampshire  - A general

                                           interest blog maintained by Allen Norcross in Swanzey. Always interesting and informative. Well

                                           worth a regular visit to read Allen's comments on regional natural history and his wonderful

                                           photography (http://nhgardensolutions.wordpress.com/)

 

 

 

 

                  The monthly Monadnock Nature Almanac is compiled and edited by Chuck Schmidt, Hancock, NH.  To share your

             observations or subscribe (or unsubscribe) to the free e-mail, contact brimstone108@myfairpoint.net .   Please

             note, the MNA is formatted to display on a full screen computer e-mail window. All e-mail addresses are secured

             and held completely confidential.  Past  issues of the Monadnock Nature Almanac (from September 2010) are 

             available upon request.