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Week 24: Peering into a Young Bird’s Future

The days go by, but I don’t see Junior catching his own fish yet. The other morning, I looked out the window and saw Mom and Dad both sitting separately on nearby pilings eating a fish of their own while Junior was sitting demurely on the nest site waiting for breakfast. Could the parents be purposely trying to drive him to get his own breakfast? Maybe....

From a Norwegian forest to Upakrik Farm

Spooks adopted Upakrik Farm on the evening of All Souls Day in 1996. Our black cocker spaniel Dixie and I both saw a cat in our driveway. I thought it was our cat Pumpkin, a Maine coon cat, but Dixie gave chase and the cat jumped into the shrubbery. When I found Pumpkin in her basket, I concluded we had a visiting cat....

In the water, on the land and in the heavens, fall is on the way

The gibbous moon waxes to full Tuesday, traveling through the rising constellations of autumn. At one time, great sturgeon filled America’s waterways each August as they fattened up for the coming cold, and so this full moon was called the Sturgeon Moon. But these days the fish are so scarce they are off limits to anglers....

The way to kill a thirsty weed during drought is to pull it

A Bay Weekly reader called complaining that the weed killer Roundup was not killing the weeds he was spraying. Matter of fact, he said, “ I might just as well have been spraying the weeds with water.”

If you read the Roundup label carefully, you’ll see that it “should be applied only on actively growing weeds.”

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Week 23: Too Hot Even for Osprey

All three are now gone from view most of the day. They are probably sitting up in trees to keep out of the sun. It has been blistering lately. I don’t know if any fishing lessons are going on. I haven’t seen any from my window, but that’s usually the next step after the young ones get flight proficient.

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Everything living eventually dies. If it weren’t for decomposers, we would be buried in all of the dead stuff.

Perhaps you thought you were living in the age of technology? Yes, humans with our tools and machines have had a tremendous impact on earth. Evidence of human impact goes back thousands of years, and the pace is rapidly accelerating. But a few thousand years is just a moment in the history of the earth. It might be easier to argue that we are living in the age of the beetle.

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To play with them, you need to know the rules

The Chesapeake had at last become quiet. The Bay’s summertime revelers — with their boats, jet skis and water toys — had fled home hours ago. Even the gulls were finally mute, settling into their roosts for the evening. But as deep darkness descended, my fishing partner, Christian, and I sat motionless at anchor in my small skiff positioned about 100 feet from a heavy rock jetty.

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Goodness gracious!

In the deepening twilight, Venus, Saturn and Mars blink into view above the west horizon. Thursday the waxing crescent moon joins the fray, with none farther than seven degrees from any other. The planets set around 10pm at week’s end, and while Mars and Venus remain just a few degrees apart through most of the month, Saturn drops from sight over the next few days.

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That’s when the fisherwomen bring home the fish

As we entered the Atlantic and the big ocean swells effortlessly lifted our 85-foot head boat, Thelma Dale IV, I recalled the words of one of my favorite authors, Tom McGuane: “I fish all the time when I’m at home, so when I go on vacation, I make sure to get in plenty of fishing.” That has always been my guiding philosophy.

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Walk with me for our grandchildren’s sake

Maybe it is just my age, but every summer in Annapolis seems to be getting hotter, humidity thicker.

Satellite technology tells us that carbon, a greenhouse gas, is increasing in the atmosphere and that the whole world is heating up.

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