Features

It was Christmas Day and Andrea Spence was starting to prepare dinner when she received a call about 20 stranded dolphins. She quickly left her home in South Orleans and headed for Brewster, where she weathered heavy rain with other members of the International Fund for Animal Welfare’s Marine Mammal Rescue and Research Team. Spence and her colleagues were met with a dire situation: 11 live dolphins were stran...

 The sometimes weird and sometimes spectacular adornments of wild creatures inspired author Jenna Grodzicki of Chatham to write “Wild Style: Amazing Animal Adornments” (Millbrook Press, 2021). “Hats. Jewelry. Makeup. Perfume. People wear accessories every day. But humans aren’t the only ones with a flair for fashion,” Grodzicki writes. For wild creatures, “The right look, though, can make all the difference.” ...

WHOI Researcher: Underwater Tech Driving Knowledge Of Oceans

By: Elizabeth Van Wye

As anyone who has attempted to recover their lost sunglasses after they fell off a boat can attest, even clean ocean water is impenetrable beyond a few inches. Over the past decades, dramatic improvements in our ability to explore the ocean depths have taken place and yet there is still so much to be learned about the ocean, whose well-being is critical to our global ecosystem. More than 80 people were online ...

Nature Connection: When There Are No Words

By: Mary Richmond

Sunsets do not utter sentences. Waves do not speak in rhymes. Trees don’t spout half truths and flowers tell no lies. Birds sing but not with lyrics. Coyotes howl and yip but with no paragraphs or grammar. Rabbits and deer are mostly silent, yet they get their points across. Underwater there are clicks and whines, melodies and harmonies but no whales or fish use words to tell their tales. Only we ...

Nature Connection: Out With The Old

By: Mary Richmond

One morning in that blurry week between Christmas and New Years I went for an early morning walk on the beach. There’d been a full moon and the high tide that accompanied that and the sand was filled with shells, twists of seaweed and a multitude of beaten up and well worn feathers. The sky was that silvery shade of blue we get when the sun feels pale and watery and the sea was nearly white from glare and spark...

PATH Works To Combat Human Trafficking On Cape Cod

By: Digney Fignus

January Is Human Trafficking Awareness Month January begins the year with Human Trafficking Awareness Month. Cape Cod PATH (People Against Trafficking Humans), a non-profit under the umbrella of the Cape Cod Foundation, is a task force on the frontline in addressing this pervasive human rights issue. The reality is that there are more people enslaved today than at any time in history. Across the globe, an e...

In the charming 1987 rom-com movie “Roxanne,” a tongue-tied young firefighter is unable express his romantic feelings for a beautiful woman. Step in Steve Martin, who ghostwrites love letters of such eloquence that the woman falls in love with the firefighter. Jill Meyer of Chatham, who founded the wedding service company “Write Weddings,” has performed that same magic. A Washington, D.C. man contacted her and...

In the days before the ongoing pandemic reached Cape Cod's shores, if you swung by the Hot Chocolate Sparrow on a sunny afternoon when the weather was warm, you'd likely find Roger Boucher working in one of his sketchbooks. A closer look, however, reveals impressively detailed drawings that could easily find their way into a local gallery. Boucher, an Orleans native, has been drawing since he was a little boy,...

Learning To Live With Less

By: Mary Richmond

After the wind and rain of a winter storm, the beach was quiet and empty. Seaweed and seashells had been tossed about and gulls in dull winter plumage watched me warily from their spots on the upper beach as they waited for the tide to turn. There wasn’t a sound except the slush of the waves against the sand. The sky was full of fat clouds tinged with lavender and the raw, damp cold seeped in though every openi...

Nature Connection: The Unwelcome Ones

By: Mary Richmond

They start chattering long before the sun comes up. Their roost is outside my window and I know they are plotting the best ways to raid the feeders the minute the light rises in the sky. Down the street and across the way, another group is restlessly waiting, their whines a little more subtle in the dawn than they will be later in the morning. By the time the sun is up, my feeders are humming with...

Reaching Heart School To Premiere Virtual 'Nutcracker'

By: Elizabeth Van Wye

Can you dance a classical ballet and still abide by all the COVID-19 protocols? The Reaching Heart School of Ballet in West Harwich was determined to give it a try for their headline production of a perennial Christmas favorite, “The Nutcracker.” The result is a fully costumed 90-minute virtual production complete with movie-like effects premiering online Christmas night. Like many ballet schools and compan...

Nature Connection: Flotsam and Jetsam

By: Mary Richmond

Walking the beach after a storm full of wind is always interesting. Add a surging high tide that pushes beyond usual boundaries and you never know what you might find where. There are the usual piles of seaweed, driftwood, shells of all kinds and the broken shells of horseshoe crabs as well as true crabs. There may be a dead fish or two, even dead sea birds half buried in wet sand. There could be feathers and odd...