Nature Blog

Helping Wildlife in Spring

by Lauren AdamsLead Wildlife KeeperSpring is a magical time in Vermont.  From endless piles of snow and bleak, gray skies, we are starting to see signs of life.  Bluebirds are gathering nesting materials, pairs of Canada geese are returning to freshly thawed ponds, and bears have emerged from their winter slumbers.  Springtime is a big…

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The Beauty of Native Wildflowers

By Anna Autilio Lead Environmental Educator In 2018, we mark the centennial of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, the most powerful and important bird-protection law ever passed. In honor of this milestone, nature lovers around the world are joining forces to celebrate 2018 as the “Year of the Bird.” March’s call to action is to cultivate…

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The Fab Four: Meet Our New Birds!

by Anna Autilio Lead, Environmental Educator This summer, VINS was fortunate to welcome a whopping four new birds to the education team. We are excited to introduce you to them, and look forward to your meeting them eye-to-eye as raptor ambassadors! Miami, the Eastern Screech Owl When next you come to VINS, keep your eyes…

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NestWatch 2017: Summer Update

by Anna Autilio Lead Environmental Educator NestWatch training at VINS (Nathan Thoele) A young visitor noticed me sticking a long, bent pole up into the rafters of the Nature Nook last month. “What are you doing? What’s up there?” “I don’t know yet—do you want to help me find out?” I asked. Pointing her towards…

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A Change of Feathers: The Molt

By Anna Autilio Lead Environmental Educator Feathers are one of the defining characteristics of birds. They produce the brilliant red of the Northern Cardinal, and the shocking blue of an Indigo Bunting. Though one purpose of feathers is to be flashy and attractive, especially to a potential mate, feathers have a host of other functions.…

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The Yearly Cycle: Vernal Pools

by Anna AutilioEnvironmental Educator Trout Lily (Erythronium americanum) One of the most beautiful natural illustrations of the cycle of the year is found in the vernal pool. Often called “ephemeral”, these pools provide crucial, temporary homes for some distinct wild plant and animal species. Filling in the spring and drying in the summer, they track…

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Summer Solstice: June 21st!

by Anna AutilioEnvironmental EducatorHappy Summer Solstice! Earlier today, the sun was at its highest point in our sky–the highest it will be for the rest of the year. Today, June 21st, is the longest day of the year, at just about 15 hours and 33 minutes. Perfectly timed to make the most of the beautiful…

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