Archives

Horseshoe Crabs on Nantucket – Ancient and Fascinating

May 7, 2013

Spring on Nantucket means the arrival of peepers, daffodils blooming and American oystercatchers on the beach.  It also means the arrival of one of our more interesting marine species – the horseshoe crab, which begins showing up on protected and sheltered beaches to mate and spawn in May and June. These prehistoric looking animals aren’t…

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Bud Burst and Egg Time

April 22, 2013

At this point in the year, we are all hungry for signs of spring. As Danielle wrote in a recent NCF Science and Stewardship blog post, peepers are singing spring songs in the marshes and ponds, and spotted turtles and snakes are emerging to bask in the sun. Otherwise, the landscape remains mainly a study…

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Spring is finally here!

April 8, 2013

Nothing says spring like evening choruses of spring peepers! With all the rain earlier this spring, these little trillers were reported peeping away on Nantucket in early March. But for me, spring doesn’t truly arrive until I find my first spotted turtle basking after a long winter hibernation. On Friday, March 29th, the weather finally…

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Wild Cats on Nantucket!

February 22, 2013

There are few issues in wildlife biology that are as contentious and emotional as that of feral cats. It’s akin to modern politics, it seems that you are on one side or the other and there is no in between. For instance, the front cover of a recent issue of the Wildlife Professional produced by…

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Searching for a Certain “Some Bunny”

February 8, 2013

This winter, our science department is attempting to document if a rare and elusive species of cottontail rabbit is still present on Nantucket. The New England Cottontail (Sylvilagus transitionalis) is the only cottontail rabbit that is native to the northeastern United States. It prefers dense shrubland habitats where it can effectively hide from predators, and…

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Thinking about Deer Browse ‘Cause it’s Hunting Season

November 28, 2012

There are a few local legends about how deer first came to live on Nantucket that range from deer swimming from the Cape (16 miles at the shortest point) to deer being purposefully brought to the island in the 1920s for hunting.  Looking at archaeological evidence, deer have likely been present since Nantucket became an…

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Getting closer – Thank you!

November 26, 2012

Our #SciFund Challenge to crowdfund for spotted turtle research on Nantucket is taking off.  We have been making new friends on facebook and getting new followers on twitter (@ncfscience) – all great ways to keep tabs on our research and activities here at NCF.  This week, we have a few new people to thank for…

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Tracking spotted turtles is hard work….

November 21, 2012

A few months ago, NCF’s primary turtle expert decided to attach a GoPro camera to the top of a hard hat and set off into the scrub oak to show what it’s like to track turtles through the shrubby wetlands on Nantucket.  See our Turtle project video (tracking footage shows up around 1:45) to see…

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Nantucket’s Most Wanted Turtles!

November 8, 2012

As implied in the first line of our last post, there are also at least two species of turtles that call Nantucket home that are not native to the island. Non-native species are those that are not naturally part of a local biota and these turtles were either intentionally released here or are escaped pets.…

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The Turtles of Nantucket

November 7, 2012

Nantucket Island is home to three species of native turtles: painted, snapping and spotted turtles. There are rumors of a fourth species and we need your help in finding it! Eastern painted turtle (Chrysemys picta) Eastern painted turtles are perhaps the most common turtle on Nantucket and can frequently be seen in groups basking in…

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