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The Bagnato family, in town from New Jersey, decided to try the sledding hill behind Stowe Elementary School.

We know that climate change is different from weather, but here in Vermont, it sure seems that extreme weather — particularly heavy rain, flooding and windstorms — is on the rise.

Two chipmunks vie for seeds on our front lawn. One lives directly underneath the bird feeder. Another hails from the far side of the house, address unknown.

Tucked behind a stonewall on the edge of a hardwood forest, my 6-year-old students and I spy on an Eastern gray squirrel (Sciurus carolinensis) as it climbs out of a tree cavity and scurries down to the ground. There is a dusting of snow.

Black-capped chickadees are one of the most frequent visitors to our bird feeders in winter, but do we really know them? This common bird exhibits some remarkable behaviors and winter survival strategies.

Vermont’s loons are thriving with a record 101 nesting pairs recorded statewide in 2019, the highest since loon monitoring began in 1978, according to the Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department and Vermont Center for Ecostudies (VCE).

The blast of a gunshot: A deep bass roar she feels in her chest, followed by a treble ringing in her ears. The buck drops. The hunter remains in her crouch, watching the animal’s last breaths through her scope. When he is still she rises, trembling from the cold and the moment, and approaches.

British soldier lichens are among the first wild things I remember being able to identify as a child. I loved spotting this lichen during forays into the woods – on a giant boulder or atop a decaying stump – its tiny, bright red caps seemed whimsical and somehow happy. I still love to find B…

I fall in love easy. I’ve been mad about river otters and star-nosed moles, and of course the venomous short-tailed shrew. But my first love was a creature that is almost mythical, a shadow lingering on the edges of time. There wasn’t much of it, merely bones, teeth, scraps of hair, and an o…

Woolly bear caterpillars seem to be everywhere these days – creeping across the lawn, along the road when I’m walking the dog, hidden in the wilted cut-back of the perennial garden. Last week I found a woolly bear curled up in a shoe I’d left on the front porch. These fuzzy, black-and-brown-…

Last year, I showed up to work on Oct. 31 in one of my old park ranger’s uniforms, torn to fake-bloody shreds in an imaginary bear attack. One year earlier, I drank smoothies for breakfast, lunch, and dinner because, ironically, my prosthetic vampire fangs were too fragile to sink into solid…

On spring evenings, just before dark, I used to hear a faint drumroll coming from somewhere off in the wooded hills. It sounded to me like an old tractor starting up, although it seemed like an odd time for a farmer to start work. I later learned that it was the drumming of a ruffed grouse. …

This week feels like fall proper. It’s gray, drizzly, 50s; the kind of weather that makes you realize you’d better batten down the house for winter.

The woods of Bolton and Richmond will be the setting this weekend for all things climbing at CRAG-VT’s first Vermont Climbing Festival, featuring demos, clinics and competitions, music, camping and food.

Find things to do this week in northern and central Vermont: community, exhibits, film and theater, kid-friendly, meetings, music and nightlife, sports and outdoors, talks, workshops and more.

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