Outdoors

    Last week, charter captains and private boaters sailing out of Montauk were finding striped bass, bass, bass. Nice plump ones. This week, the bass flurry slowed, but the slack was taken up by some doormat-size fluke and vast...
   A week ago Thursday, Stephanie Baloghy, who lives in East Hampton, called to tell me that she had just found a baby box turtle slowly making its way over some leaf-strewn ground in her yard. She examined it as she has examined others...
    Harvey Bennett of the Tackle Shop in Amagansett can always be counted on for a fish tale or two. On Monday he related the adventures of one blowfish, a k a bottlefish or blowtoad.     Bennett said he was checking...
   Orioles, towhees, great-crested flycatchers, rose-breasted grosbeaks, catbirds, and a ton of warblers have all come back to roost. The most spectacular avian visitor in a while was the white-faced ibis that was seen and photographed...
    The bartering has begun. A plumber installing sinks and toilets at a Montauk motel in the throes of gentrification showed up late, sunburned, and begging his employer’s indulgence. 
   We birders are always looking for the odd bird, not the familiar one. Yet it’s the familiar ones that provide us with the most information, the ones that quiet us down when things go awry, and at this point in civilization, they...
    The Montauk SurfMasters spring shoot-out tournament will begin at one minute after midnight tonight, or tomorrow morning, however you want to think of it. And, according to the few surfcasters who have already ventured to their...
   We are in the midst of a deep drought. Yes, we had almost three inches of rain locally two Sundays ago, but a drive by Chatfield’s Hole on Two Holes of Water Road showed that it hardly made a difference. The pond level was so...
    Reading this week’s press release from the State Department of Environmental Conservation was like waking from a wonderful, liberating dream and realizing it was all true.
    On April 10 I went with some friends to the meeting of the Long Island Botanical Society held at Stony Brook University. When we were approaching the campus from the north end of Nichols Road, a red fox streamed across the road...
    Alfonso Marino stopped casting into the Georgica Pond gut as the water flowed into the sea. He stopped casting flies and watched in awe as Mother Nature did her spring thing shortly after the pond was opened to the sea on April...
   We are in the midst of a drought and there is nothing worse for those early leavers and early bloomers who bet on a premature spring, but not on the dry weather. In 1986 during an extended dry period a wildfire caught hold of Hither...
   The last “Nature Notes” column talked about Montauk’s ancient hardwood forest, the Point Woods. In East Hampton Town there are two other forests dominated by broad-leaved deciduous trees that have hardly been cut...