Author Archives: Hillary T.

About Hillary T.

Where: Mass Audubon Headquarters, Lincoln Who: Massachusetts transplant by way of Florida and New York. Raising two young girls, who she hopes will be budding naturalists Favorite part of the job: Learning something new every day from some of the smartest and most enthusiastic groups of people

Porcupine © Kati Seiffer

What To Do This Weekend: Feb 29-Mar 1

Go birding, look for animal tracks, see maple sugaring in action, take a winter nature hike, and more at a wildlife sanctuary this weekend.

Porcupine © Kati Seiffer
Porcupine © Kati Seiffer

Greater Boston

During Digital Photography for Beginners at Moose Hill in Sharon, get to know your camera better. Learn about lenses, composition, lighting, depth of field, and more. (adults, registration required)

Go Backyard Birding at Boston Nature Center. Learn how to use binoculars, go on a bird hike, and create some seed and fruit art for the birds to enjoy. (families with children, registration required)

New to birding, or looking to sharpen your skills? All skill levels are invited to Birding for Beginners at Habitat in Belmont. (adults, registration required)

Look for Signs of Animals as they forage for food and shelter at Broadmoor in Natick during the cold winter months. Learn to identify the tracks, chews, scat, burrows and other clues left by many creatures including deer, fisher and coyote. (adults and families, registration required)

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North Shore

Take a Sugaring Off Tour at Ipswich River in Topsfield to learn how to identify a sugar maple, observe tapping and sap collection methods, watch the sap being boiled down in the sugarhouse, and get a sweet taste of the final product. (adults and children, registration required)

Go Saturday Morning Birding in the Newburyport/Plum Island, some of the best year-round birding locations in the country. Beginners and birders of all levels are welcome. (adults)

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Connecticut River Valley

Leap into a Winter Ecology Walk at Graves Farm in Williamsburg to look for animal tracks, winter birds, and other signs of wildlife. Identify winter plants and look for winter spiders, springtails, stoneflies, and more. (adults, registration required)

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Berkshires

Take a two-mile Richardson Brook Hike in Tolland to explore the sanctuary’s secretive hemlock forests in search of snowy specialties like hemlock, fisher, porcupine, and moose. Note: this trail is very uneven and rocky. (adults, registration required)

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South of Boston

During Family Habitat Days at Oak Knoll in Attleboro look for interesting animals, plants, and see what has visited the sanctuary. (families, registration required)

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Eastern Screech-Owl © Linda MacMillan

What To Do This Weekend: Feb 22-23

Practice yoga, go on an owl prowl, take a nature walk, look for animal tracks, build a bluebird nest box, and more at a wildlife sanctuary this weekend.

Eastern Screech-Owl © Linda MacMillan
Eastern Screech-Owl © Linda MacMillan

Greater Boston

Experience Yoga and Mindfulness at Habitat in Belmont. After a 45-minute slow and gentle yoga class indoors, head outside to explore the trails. (adults, registration required)

Go on a Family Owl Prowl at the Museum of American Bird Art in Canton. Learn some owling tips and all about owl ecology as we approach nesting season and create your very own owl print to take home. (families, registration required)

During Tracks and Signs at Boston Nature Center in Mattapan, hike the sanctuary to search for signs animals left behind while learning life histories through observation. (adults, registration required)

Take a free Sunday Stroll around Stony Brook in Norfolk. See what is happening on the sanctuary and stop to enjoy any interesting and unusual sights we come upon. (members only, all ages, registration required)

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North Shore

Go Saturday Morning Birding in the Newburyport/Plum Island, some of the best year-round birding locations in the country. Beginners and birders of all levels are welcome. (adults)

Head to Ipswich River in Topsfield for Sunday Morning Yoga. Soothe your mind, body, and soul with mindful breathing and meditation for a feeling of overall peace and well-being. (adults, registration required)

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Central Massachusetts

During Snow Tracking and Winter Animal Activities at Broad Meadow Brook in Worcester learn to use snow tracks and other clues to explore the winter landscape. (adults, registration required)

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Connecticut River Valley

Explore the changing nature and beauty of Arcadia in Easthampton and Northampton with your young child as part of First Child in the Woods. Gain the skills to confidently lead explorations of your own. (families with children ages 0-5, registration required)

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Berkshires

Take part in a Bluebird Nest Box Building Workshop at Pleasant Valley in Lenox. Build the pre-cut kit together, learn the best way to place it, and take your box home to welcome birds to your backyard. (adults and children, registration required)

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South of Boston

Find out the Mysteries of the Great Shearwater during a family friendly presentation in Plymouth. Peter Trull from the Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary will explain the satellite tagging process as well as the ecology and natural history of this fascinating pelagic species. (all ages, registration requested)

Learn all about electricity and magnetism during a Family Explorations at Oak Knoll in Attleboro. (families, registration required)

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Bald Eagle © Michael Mondville

What To Do This Weekend: Feb 15-16

Attend an Eagle Festival, go on a nature walk, check out David Sibley’s new art exhibit, look for owls, watch a documentary, and more at a wildlife sanctuary this weekend.

Bald Eagle © Michael Mondville
Bald Eagle © Michael Mondville

North Shore

Deep winter is on its way—and with it, the bald eagles return to the Merrimack Valley. Head to the Eagle Festival at Joppa Flats to celebrate these special winter residents of the greater Newburyport area.

Hike the scenic trails of Ipswich River in Topsfield to find out how Plants and Animals Survive Winter. Stop to identify mammal tracks in the snow, watch birds puff up their down feathers for insulation, and marvel over tree buds. (adults, registration required)

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Greater Boston

Go on a Family Nature Walk at Drumlin Farm in Lincoln. Develop our skills of observation and our understanding of and connection to the natural world. (families with children ages 2-8, registration required)

Head to the Museum of American Bird Art in Canton for the opening of their new exhibition, What It’s Like To Be a Bird: Paintings by David Sibley, where you can meet the artist himself.

During Winter Backyard Birding and Crafts at the Boston Nature Center, learn how to use binoculars, identify different bird species, and create seed and fruit art for the birds to enjoy. (families with children ages 5-12, registration required)

Go on a short Late Winter Bird Identification Walk around Moose Hill in Sharon. Learn simple techniques that will help you to identify most of our resident birds, and a few winter visitors. (adults)

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South of Boston

Enjoy an Owl Prowl Adventure at Tidmarsh in Plymouth and search for resident owls. Stop, look, and listen for “whooooo” might be out there! (adults, registration required)

Join the Junior Bird Club for a bird walk at Allens Pond in South Dartmouth. This a free group is open to children and adults of all ages. (adults and children, registration required)

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Cape Cod

Head to the Wellfleet Harbor Actors Theatre to watch a screening of Snowy Owl: Queen of the North to witness the highs, lows, and challenges a breeding pair of Snowy Owls face while trying to raise their young on Alaska’s North Slope. (adults and children, registration required)

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Central Massachusetts

Meet some of the wild creatures living right in your own backyard during Nature of My Backyard at Broad Meadow Brook in Worcester. You might meet a fisher, skunk, turtle, fox, or even a flying squirrel. (adults and children, registration required)

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White-breasted Nuthatch © Joel Eckerson

What To Do This Weekend: Feb 8-9

Go birding, look for wildlife tracks, take a nature walk, make dumplings, practice mindfulness, learn how to identify trees in winter, and more at a wildlife sanctuary this weekend.

White-breasted Nuthatch © Joel Eckerson
White-breasted Nuthatch © Joel Eckerson

Greater Boston

Birders and non-birders of all ages and skill levels are invited for a Bird Walk at Habitat in Belmont. We will look for signs of migrating species, mating behaviors, and nest building.

Go on a Family Animal Tracking Adventure at Blue Hills Trailside Museum in Milton. Start indoors a hands-on investigation then hike into the forest to look for tracks and signs of our local wildlife. (families with children, registration required)

Learn how to make Chinese Dumplings at Drumlin Farm in Lincoln. Go through the process step by step: rolling the dough, making the filling, assembling the dumplings, and trying the three different methods of cooking them. (adults, registration required)

Enjoy a Winter Nature Walk at Boston Nature Center. Along the way, learn about tracks, birds, winter animals and trees in winter. (families with children, registration required)

As part of the Macro Photography Workshop at Broadmoor in Natick, work with various lighting techniques and practice using different depths of field to allow for a range of artistic and compositional choices. (adults, registration required)

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South of Boston

Go on a Snow Moon Hike at Tidmarsh in Plymouth to stop, look, and listen for creatures that awaken with the setting of the sun. Slow your pace and heighten your senses to experience the sanctuary under the cover of darkness. (adults and children ages 10+, registration required)

Take a Morning Snowshoe Trek along the Beach Loop Trail at Allens Pond in South Dartmouth and Westport. Look for signs of animal activity and scan the skies for Snowy Owls. No snow? Bring hiking boots! (adults, registration required)

Valentine’s Day is for the Birds at Oak Knoll in Attleboro. Enjoy a quick talk about the birds who stay in the area during the winter then build some Valentine’s Day themed bird feeders to place on our trails. (adults and children, registration required)

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Cape Cod and Islands

Unravel the mystery of Identifying Winter Trees at Ashumet Holly in Falmouth. Study bark, branching, and bud patterns, which help identify dormant trees. (adults, registration required)

Explore the beaches, dunes, and waters of the Outer Cape in search of Winter Birds including Snow Buntings, Horned Larks, sea ducks, Loons, and Snowy Owls. (adults, registration required)

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North Shore

Get outside with your family for a Mindful Nature Experience at Ipswich River in Topsfield. Elements of mindfulness, forest bathing, ayurveda, and yoga will reinvigorate your senses, and deeply immerse you in the healing power of nature. (families, registration required)

Go Saturday Morning Birding in the Newburyport/Plum Island, some of the best year-round birding locations in the country. Beginners and birders of all levels are welcome. (adults)

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Central Massachusetts

Wildlife Tracking for Beginners at Wachusett Meadow in Princeton starts indoors with a one-hour introduction. An outdoor hike will follow, where you can put your new skills to use. (adults, registration required)

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Connecticut River Valley

Enjoy Winter Walk at Laughing Brook in Hampden. Look for wildlife tracks, as well as other signs of wildlife such as browsing, scat, and winter homes. (adults, registration required)

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Wachusett Meadow Wildlife Sanctuary in Princeton

What To Do This Weekend: Feb 1-2

Celebrate Groundhog Day, attend an owl festival, go on a nighttime walk, learn some photography skills, climb a mountain, and more at a wildlife sanctuary this weekend.

Wachusett Meadow Wildlife Sanctuary in Princeton c Julie Mankowsky
Wachusett Meadow Wildlife Sanctuary in Princeton © Julie Mankowsky 

Greater Boston

Explore the wonders of owls with friends and family during the Owl Festival at Broadmoor in Natick. Go on a full moon owl prowl, or join us for an up-close and personal view of some of our local owl species. (registration required)

Dig into climate and weather science and watch Ms. G (the Official State Groundhog of Massachusetts) deliver her 14th prognostication during a Climate Action Day at Drumlin Farm. Will we have six more weeks of winter or an early spring?

Attend a Winter Photography Workshop at Boston Nature Center. Go outside to take photographs and, if time permits, come back indoors to discuss ways in which to enhance our images. (adults, registration required)

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South of Boston

During Family Habitat Days at Oak Knoll in Attleboro look for interesting animals, plants, and see what has visited the sanctuary. (families, registration required)

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North Shore

Go Saturday Morning Birding in the Newburyport/Plum Island, some of the best year-round birding locations in the country. Beginners and birders of all levels are welcome. (adults)

During the Youth Outdoor Shelter Survival Challenge at Ipswich River in Topsfield, kids ages 9-14 will look at real examples of animal homes for inspiration, learn some different shelter types and their pros and cons, discuss shelter safety, and make their own full-size shelters on the sanctuary. (children ages 9-14, registration required)

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Central Massachusetts

Take a Moonlight Winter Walk at Wachusett Meadow in Princeton. Explore with your ears as much as your eyes, perhaps getting the chance to hear howling coyotes or hooting owls, as well as appreciate the peaceful hush of the winter woods. (adults, registration required)

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Connecticut River Valley

Have Family Fun with Tracking at Arcadia in Easthampton and Northampton. Start inside learning what to observe while tracking, and then we’ll go outdoors to find tracks in forest and field. (families with children, registration required)

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Berkshires

Get active during a Lenox Mountain Summit Hike. This moderately-strenuous hike follows the Trail of the Ledges and/or Overbrook Trail three miles round-trip through northern hardwood and evergreen forests for an elevation gain of 840 feet. (adults, registration required)

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Barred Owl © Robert Watroba

What To Do This Weekend: Jan 25-26

See live birds of prey, go on a winter nature walk, find out how to track animals, build a fairy house, look for owls, and more at a wildlife sanctuary this weekend.

Barred Owl © Robert Watroba
Barred Owl © Robert Watroba

North Shore

See live birds of prey up-close like never before with Wingmasters at Ipswich River in Topsfield. You’ll be introduced to different types of raptors including eagles, hawks, falcons, and owls during this exciting indoor presentation. (adults and children, registration required)

Meet Backyard Birds at Joppa Flats in Newburyport. Bird Banding Station Manager Ben Flemer presents demonstrations on bird research and banding. You’ll learn about your own backyard birds and why they’re here while watching scientific research in action.

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Greater Boston

Go on a Family Bird Walk at Boston Nature Center. Learn how to use binoculars to search for the most common birds found in Boston and learn how to identify them! Sing like a bird and get a closer look at feathers, nests, and other bird related artifacts. (families with children, registration required)

During Busy Bees’ Wax at Drumlin Farm in Lincoln, meet our beekeeper, find out why bees make wax, and learn how we’ve used it throughout history. You’ll make candles and decorations to take home! (families with children, registration required)

Whooo is making all that noise in your backyard at night? Head to Stony Brook for On the Prowl for Owls. Start inside to learn about owls and the dissect an owl pellet. Afterwards head out under the moon and stars to see if we can hear or see any owls. (families with children, registration required)

As part of Animal Tracking at Broadmoor in Natick, learn to identify the tracks, chews, scat, burrows and other clues left by many creatures including deer, fisher, and coyote. (adults and families with children, registration required)

Search for the many animals that call Moose Hill in Sharon home during Tracks and Traces. Start with the basics of animal track patterns and then head outside to look for evidence of our resident winter wildlife. (families with children, registration required)

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South of Boston

Go on a Seaside Seal Stroll with Allens Pond in South Dartmouth and Westport. Learn about the lives of harbor and grey seals, what brings them to our area, and proper etiquette for viewing these protected species. (adults and children ages 6+, registration required)

Take a hike to learn about the legends of the Fairies and Trolls that live at Oak Knoll in Attleboro. Then head indoors to build your very own fairy house. (adults and children, registration required)

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Central Massachusetts

Connect with the natural world in a healing, calming, grounding, and replenishing way through a Shinrin-Yoku “Forest Breathing” Guided Sanctuary Walk at Wachusett Meadow in Princeton. (adults, registration required)

During Snow Tracking and Winter Animal Activities at Broad Meadow Brook in Worcester learn to use snow tracks and other clues to explore the winter landscape. (adults, registration required)

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Berkshires

Strap on snowshoes (or microspikes, depending upon conditions) and embark on a winter Snowshoe Hike at Pleasant Valley in Lenox. Watch for wildlife activity around ponds, streams, meadows, and woodlands. (adults, registration required)

Search for tracks, scat, and other Signs of Wildlife that stay active through winter at Lime Kiln Farm in Sheffield. Discover new “whodunit” mysteries that take place out in nature while we’re typically warm inside our homes. (adults and children, registration required)

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Connecticut River Valley

Arcadia in Easthampton and Northampton is proud to be home to one of the several dozen nesting pairs of Bald Eagles in our state. Learn about these birds and their reintroduction and take a walk into the meadows to look for eagles. (adults, registration required)

Go on a Winter Nature Walk at the Quabbin Reservoir in Belchertown. Along the way, search of winter songbirds, bald eagles, animal tracks, and more. (adults, registration required)

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River Otter © Jim Morelly

What To Do This Weekend: Jan 18-19

Go birding, try snowshoeing, look for mammals, paint in watercolor, ID winter trees, and more at a wildlife sanctuary this weekend.

River Otter © Jim Morelly
River Otter © Jim Morelly

Greater Boston

Bird Away the Winter Blues at Mount Auburn Cemetery in Cambridge. Enjoy a peaceful walk in this historic and beautifully landscaped cemetery looking for winter residents and some surprises like possible Yellow-bellied Sapsucker and Red-breasted Nuthatch. (adults, registration required)

Learn about the adaptations that help trees survive the harsh conditions of winter as well as identification techniques at Boston Nature Center’s Winter Tree Identification program. (adults, registration required)

No school on Monday? Spend a Nature Day at Moose Hill in Sharon. Take part in outdoor exploration, nature play, crafts, stories, and fun activities. (children ages 4-12, registration required)

Kids can go Wild about Weasels at Stony Brook in Norfolk. Look for tracks on the trail and maybe see an otter or two. Make a wiggly weasel of your own to take home as well. (children ages 4-12, registration required)

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Cape Cod

Create Your 2020 Bird List at Long Pasture in Barnstable. This series, which takes place one Saturday a month, will help you with your year list from beginning to end during outings at birding hotspots on the Cape and further afield. (adults, registration required)

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South of Boston

Bring the family to Oak Knoll in Attleboro for a Family Exploration of rocks and fossils. (families with children, registration required)

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North Shore

During Mammals in Watercolor at Ipswich River in Topsfield, take a quick walk around the sanctuary to search for mammals such as deer, foxes, weasels, squirrels, and more. Then put brush to paper and create watercolor paintings of a mammal of our choice. (adults, registration required)

Focus on Merrimack River Birds with Joppa Flats in Newburyport. The Merrimack River is an extraordinary place for winter birding, with large areas remaining ice free. Look out for Black-headed gulls, Red-breasted and Common mergansers, Long-tailed Ducks, Common and Barrow’s goldeneyes, Buffleheads, Bald Eagles, and Great Cormorants. (adults, registration required)

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Central Massachusetts

Head to Broad Meadow Brook in Worcester for an Owl Prowl for Families. Practice owl calls and search the sanctuary trails for these magnificent creatures of the night, finishing up with hot chocolate and games. (adults with children ages 5+, registration required)

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Connecticut River Valley

The forest is full of signs that tell us about the wildlife within. Learn to read the Tracks and Signs left by animals that live at Laughing Brook in Hampden. (adults with children, registration required)

Snowshoe in a Spruce-Fir Forest in Windsor and learn about this unique ecosystem, where plant species such as balsam fir and red spruce are the dominant trees. Look for tracks of snowshoe hare, ruffed grouse, and other fascinating wildlife along the way. (adults, registration required)

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copyright Sherri VandenAkker

What To Do This Weekend: Jan 11-12

Improve your photography skills, go on night hikes, learn how to identify bones and tracks, practice mindfulness, look for seals, and more at a wildlife sanctuary this weekend.

Gray Seals © Sherri VandenAkker

Connecticut River Valley

During the two-part Intro to Digital Nature Photography in Hampden, discuss best practices for capturing an image, understanding exposure and focus, and using both manual and automatic exposure settings. (adults, registration required)

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North Shore

Go Saturday Morning Birding in the Newburyport/Plum Island, some of the best year-round birding locations in the country. Beginners and birders of all levels are welcome. (adults)

The Skull and Bone Identification Workshop at Ipswich River in Topsfield will teach you what to look for when identifying animal bones. Practice skills using sample bones or bring in any bones you have found that you would like to identify. (adults, registration required)

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Greater Boston

Experience Yoga and Mindfulness at Habitat in Belmont. After a 45-minute slow and gentle yoga class indoors, head outside to explore the trails. (adults, registration required)

Go on a Family Animal Tracking Adventure in the Blue Hills in Milton. Start indoors with a hands-on investigation of animal specimens and artifacts. Then hike into the forest to look for tracks and signs of our local wildlife. (families, registration required)

Take an Owl Prowl Adventure at Broadmoor in Natick. Under the moon and stars, learn about owl calls, behavior, and habitat as you search and listen for our resident screech, barred and great horned owls. (families, registration required)

Let it Snow at Stony Brook in Norfolk. Watch snowflakes grow in a bottle, make paper snowflakes, and freeze a soap bubble. (children ages 4-12, registration required)

Enjoy at Winter Bird Walk at Boston Nature Center as we observe our hardy winter species. (adults, registration required)

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South of Boston

Take a Full Moon Night Hike at Oak Knoll in Attleboro to learn about the moon and nocturnal animals. (adults and children ages 5+, registration required)

Go on a Seaside Seal Stroll with Allens Pond in South Dartmouth and Westport. Learn about the lives of harbor and grey seals, what brings them to our area, and proper etiquette for viewing these protected species. (adults and children ages 6+, registration required)

More in South of Boston

Snow Buntings

What To Do This Weekend: Jan 4-5

Look for birds by day and owls by night, go on a nature walk, help maintain trails, practice yoga, and more at a wildlife sanctuary this weekend.

Snow Buntings copyright Fred Hosley
Snow Buntings © Fred Hosley

Greater Boston

Bring the whole family to Owl Prowl Adventures at Broadmoor in Natick. Under the moon and stars, learn about owl calls, behavior, and habitat as we search and listen for our resident screech, barred and great horned owls. (families, registration required)

Take a Winter Nature Walk at Boston Nature Center to explore the tracks left by nocturnal animals and spot birds in their wintering plumage. Learn about tracks, birds, winter animals and trees in winter. (families, registration required)

Help Habitat in Belmont out with some New Year Trail Tending. Bundle up and come pack down trails, look for wildlife tracks, or do some winter pruning.

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North Shore

Go Saturday Morning Birding in the Newburyport/Plum Island, some of the best year-round birding locations in the country. Beginners and birders of all levels are welcome. (adults)

Head to Ipswich River in Topsfield for Sunday Morning Yoga. Soothe your mind, body, and soul with mindful breathing and meditation for a feeling of overall peace and well-being. (adults, registration required)

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Central Massachusetts

Go on a New Year’s Hike at Wachusett Meadow in Princeton to enjoy the fresh air, beautiful trails, good company, and some seasonal natural history along the way. (adults, registration required)

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South of Boston

During Family Habitat Days at Oak Knoll in Attleboro look for interesting animals, plants, and see what has visited the sanctuary. (families, registration required)

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Cape Cod

Explore the beaches, dunes, and waters of the Outer Cape during Birding the Winter Beaches. Search of winter birds including snow buntings, horned larks, sea ducks, loons, and snowy owls. (adults, registration required)

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Arcadia Solstice

What To Do This Weekend: Dec 21-22

Celebrate the Solstice, go birding, learn about wildlife tracks, practice mindfulness, look at the stars, go on a holiday hike, and more at a wildlife sanctuary this weekend.

Arcadia Solstice
Arcadia’s Solstice Celebration

Connecticut River Valley

Celebrate the Solstice at Arcadia in Easthampton and Northampton. Ward off the cold with the warmth of a bonfire, sip hot cider, make some crafts, and listen to live music.

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North Shore

Go Saturday Morning Birding in the Newburyport/Plum Island, some of the best year-round birding locations in the country. Beginners and birders of all levels are welcome. (adults)

Get an Intro to Tracking Mammals at Ipswich River in Topsfield. Following an indoor primer, hike the sanctuary to search for tracks, chews, and scat. (adults, registration required)

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Greater Boston

Experience Yoga and Mindfulness at Habitat in Belmont. After a 45-minute slow and gentle yoga class indoors, head outside to explore the trails. (adults, registration required)

Celebrate the longest night of the year at Boston Nature Center’s Welcome the Solstice. Go on a moonlit stroll to listen for owls, then head back inside to sip hot apple cider while creating your own solstice art.

As part of a Star Gazing Night at Moose Hill in Sharon, join astronomers from the Astronomical Society of Southern New England for a look at the stars and other night objects through their big telescopes.

During Winter Backyard Birding and Crafts at Boston Nature Center, learn how to use binoculars, identify different bird species, and create seed and fruit art for the birds to enjoy. (families)

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South of Boston

Take at Holiday Hike through the different habitats found at Oak Knoll in Attleboro. We will also make special bird feeders as a gift to nature. (adults and children, registration required)

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