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Life & Times

Bill Danielson photo
The male red-breasted nuthatch has the bold coloration typical of male songbirds.

Speaking of Nature: A nuthatch saves the day

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Sunday was an unexpectedly gloomy day. Saturday had been so warm and lovely in comparison that the annual chore of moving firewood seemed like an unacceptable use of time. So, rather than don the heavy clothes required for such a task, I decided to spend my time bird watching. The long, rainy week that preceded the weekend definitely gave one … 0

Trail Mix: nature activities in western Massachusetts

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Editor’s Note: Listings in Trail Mix are free. Email outdoor@recorder.com. The deadline is Tuesday by 8 a.m. Questions? Call 413-772-0261 ext. 276. Weather may cancel or force the rescheduling of some of these events. Additionally, space is often limited. Please contact organizers to ensure you can attend. This is particularly important if registration … 0

Voice of Audubon: bird sightings in western Massachusetts

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Here are some of this week’s bird sightings from the Voice of Audubon for western Massachusetts. A golden eagle was seen in Holyoke and a northern goshawk was reported in Northampton. A few surf scoters, red-necked grebe and a black vulture were reported in Turners Falls. Some of the regularly appearing water birds found this week were green-winged teal, American wigeon, ring-necked duck, … 0

Speaking of Nature: There’s a new vulture in town

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Back in the fall of 1986, I entered the wildlife biology program at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst with so much to learn. My head contained a smattering of information about the birds, mammals, reptiles, insects and fish that … 0

Trail Mix: nature activities in western Massachusetts

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Volunteers needed for Source to Sea Cleanup Volunteers age 7 and older will gather for the 18th annual Source to Sea Cleanup on Saturday, Sept. 27, at 9 a.m. at the Great Falls Discovery Center, 2 Avenue A, in Turners Falls. Most volunteers collect trash on foot and … 0

Voices of Audubon: western Massachusetts bird sightings

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Here are some of this week’s bird sightings from the Western Voice of Audubon. An upland sandpiper, a marsh wren, American pipits, and a Connecticut warbler were in Northampton. Over the last two days, more than 2,500 broad-winged hawks were seen migrating over Blueberry Hill in Granville. Three … 0

Seafood reigns at the Ocean Grill & Steakhouse

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

By TINKY WEISBLAT Special to The Recorder The atmosphere in the Ocean Grill & Steakhouse on Federal Street in Greenfield is one of quiet professionalism. Chef Jim Sands and manager Julia Krochmalny are clearly very good at what … 0

Savoring the Seasons: More tasty festival fun!

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

By MARY MCCLINTOCK What do garlic, mushrooms, and pudding have in common? They’re all foods with western Mass festivals devoted to them in coming weeks. New to wild edible mushrooms? The Fungi Fair on Sept. 20 is a great place to learn about these tasty wild edibles. Hooray … 0

‘Flaneur Walk, Northampton”

Friday, September 5, 2014

I will tell you this once, but loudly: There are always secret lovers kissing between Warning signs. Below them the diners clink knives against plates to punctuate their points to which the lovers are not listening. And they do not know that the chef shifts a dish from … 0

Learning naturally: Nature programs take the classroom outside

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

As he crested a densely wooded, moss-covered hill in the middle of Conway’s pine forest, Edwin Anderson, 13, of Greenfield yelled, “Wow, come and look at this!” At his call, a half-dozen other kids scrambled up the hill. … 0

Between the Rows: Pickling pondered

Friday, September 5, 2014

Harvest season is upon us. This is the reward of summer-long labors. I’ve been talking to neighbors who are canning dilly beans and corn, making peach jam and drying herbs. One neighbor is seeing what she can rescue … 0

FAQ: canning

Friday, September 5, 2014

By ANDREA WEIGL MCT Sugar and safety: Those are the two big concerns of home cooks when it comes to canning. When people even think about making their own jams or pickles, they experience what I call “recipe … 0

Hooked: Reporter David Rainville reels in a good time on the Quabbin Reservoir

Friday, August 22, 2014

The first rule of fishing in a rented boat on the Quabbin Reservoir is simple: get there early. Gate 31 off Route 122 in New Salem opens at 6 a.m. and that could already be too late depending … 0