Outdoors

These Christmas counts were an alternative to hunting birds with guns and began in the very first years of the 20th century in New York City
Among the 110 bird species spotted during the annual Christmas Count was the white-breasted nuthatch. Victoria Bustamante Photos
The black-capped chickadee also showed up on counters’ lists.

Whatever its purpose, build it and they will come
The fishing is not bad at the popular town pier on Fort Pond Bay, which draws a crowd in warmer months, but it could be better. Russell Drumm

The habitat, except for the houses and yards, is occupied by a panoply of different plant associations dominated by two primary ones, chaparral and pine-oak woodlands.

My memories — some really good ones — were there, but the geography, the mansion’s global position, now belonged to the briny.
The surf was exceptionally good at Turtle Cove, just west of the Montauk Lighthouse, on Sunday. Russell Drumm

The more things change, the more they stay the same
A young great blue heron stood motionless with neck folded and head drawn in, in its non-hunting mode. Vicki Penny

Open season on Amazon drones could be just around the corner.


Ecologically it has run the gamut from tundra to heathland to oak hickory forest to grassland to savannah and back to oak hickory forest

Mal de mer
The blackfish Ed Rennar caught on the south side of Montauk Point last week missed the record blackfish by only a few ounces, weighing in at 10.65 pounds after two days in a pen. Had it been weighed when caught, it probably would have set a new record. Dawn Rennar

Early in Long Island’s 15,000-year history, sea level was more than 100 feet lower than it is now
Once the glacier stopped its advance and began to retreat to the north, its meltwaters ran easterly to the Peconics and south to the sea, carrying with them fine soil particles to form alluvial fans that ultimately became flattish productive farmland. Durell Godfrey