|Sharing this space, hunter-fisherman C.D. Dollar and birdwatcher Gary Pendleton bring back nature in words and pictures so alive that we follow them out, in mind and on foot.
Carolina Chickadee - No. 1: Jan. 6
Outdoors in Winter: Of Birds and Humans - No. 7: Feb. 17
Despite harsh conditions this winter, there is still much for the outdoor enthusiast to do that doesn't involve strapping on glorified 2x4s and plunging head first down a mountain. In the gloaming after a recent day afield, the distinctly massive white head of a bald eagle, draped by the dark wings that expanded like giant capes, was visible from several hundred yards away, menacing some snow geese and black ducks. C.D. Dollar
Listen to Mother Nature - the First Time - No 25: June 22
With visibility falling to less than 100 yards in minutes, my GPS guided us toward the entrance to Sandy Point boat ramp. We were about a half-mile from the channel entrance when the world exploded in a ferocious display of pure energy. Rain pelted us, a wind sheer pushed us off course and lightening strikes scared the daylights out of us. A crack of unearthly power jarred the fillings out of my mouth. C.D. Dollar
Woodsman, Dog and Ducks - No 41: Oct. 12
I like to kill my fair share of waterfowl for the table, and, in fact, was fortunate to bag a hen wood duck on opening day. That's certainly part of the hunt, yet when the early October chill permeates my bones, I love sitting in this flooded forested wetland, surrounded by a gnarled maze of shrubs, buttonbush and alders. In the pond and around the shoreline, large sycamores, gums and ashes, as well as white and cherrybark oak rise up through the pond, creating a vast canopy where songbirds, amphibians and rodents thrive. C.D. Dollar
Patuxent Nightmare Over But Not Forgotten - No 50: Dec. 14
The last time I was on the Patuxent River I was sick over the ecological tragedy I witnessed. A ruptured pipeline at Pepco's Chalk Point generating station spewed 110,000 gallons of oil into Swanson Creek, destroying that fragile marsh and fouling miles of Patuxent shoreline and other creeks.
Nearly 10 months after the worst oil spill in the company's 104-year history, the appearance of a formidable raft of Canada geese is an encouraging sign that the river is recovering. The challenge is to make sure that it never happens again anywhere on the Bay. C.D. Dollar
In Season: Saw Whet - No. 51: Dec. 21