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Articles by Emily Mitchell

To an osprey, I’m the paparazzi

Living on the Chesapeake Bay allows me to play in the playground of osprey. These beautiful birds, also known as sea hawks, are creative in where they make their homes.
    Many people on the Chesapeake are such lovers and advocates for osprey that they build nesting stations in hopes that a family will move in. Just down the river from my home is one such nesting station. I went to take photos, but the osprey parent was very protective of the little ones. Screaming at me in protest, she expanded her wings in hopes of intimidating me.
    I headed downriver.
    Another osprey couple nested on a channel marker enjoying the late afternoon sun. They watched my approach with keen eyes. While more accustomed to people floating by on boats because of their busy crossroads address, they still wondered just what I was up to.
    Posturing with their huge wingspan, they imagined they would get me to drift off. Little did they know that I was determined to get my gallery shot.
    After a few moments of screaming and flapping their wings, they realized that I wasn’t going to go anywhere. If they wanted privacy, then they’d have to go elsewhere. So much for their romantic evening by the water.
    Finally taking flight, they gave me my chance. It was worth the wait.

Get in touch with wildlife at ­Patuxent Research Refuge

Take a summer morning to escape the hustle and bustle in one of the verdant national wildlife refuges created by President Franklin D. Roosevelt.
    I escaped to the Patuxent Research Refuge South Tract in Laurel. Taking a deep breath as I drove through the long entry way, I felt my mind and body relax.
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A garden named for this Maryland first lady is a fine place to encounter spring

Spring is here, calling us outdoors.     
    Sample the season at Helen Avalynne Gibson Tawes Garden, an out-of-the-way treasure hidden in plain sight at Maryland Department of Natural Resources headquarters in the Tawes Building.
    The gardens are known to local birders as a hotspot for migrating warblers in April, when waves of Virginia bluebells bloom along the walkways.
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Nace Butler’s mother was enslaved by love

I ran away in February 1785 …    
    Thus begins the story of Nace Butler, a young man born to a bold Irish indentured servant and an African male slave.
    Nace’s mother Eleanor Butler, known as Irish Nell, arrived on one of the ships of Charles Calvert, the fourth Lord Baltimore.
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