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  • Monday was the first really cold day of fall. Frost had formed overnight on lawns, but it was sunny. Victoria Bustamante picked me up and we were off to Caumsett State Park at the very northwest end of Suffolk County and the Long Island Sound. Once the estate of Marshall Field, complete with a dairy farm, it is now a beautiful 1,500-acre preserve with a local Matinecock Indian name meaning “place by a sharp rock.” The sharp rock was one of several glacial erratics left when the last advance of the Wisconsin glaciation swept down across the whole of northern America more than 10,000 years ago, creating the North Fork and the morainal line of Harbor Hills that runs along the Sound from Southold on the east to beyond Great Neck at the edge of New York City on the west.
  • Fall marches on! At 6:30 last Thursday evening on a trip to Southampton Village by way of Deerfield and Edge of Woods Roads, both lanes were clear and only a single leaf fell. Three hours later on the return trip the roads were half leaf-covered while three dozen leaves floated down. Fall had begun in earnest.
  • The post-noon photoperiod will lose an hour on Sunday, while the winter solstice is only 50 days away. Any day now the lawn will be coated with gray upon waking, and frosts will soon become an everyday phenomenon.
  • The ruby-crowned kinglet is as small as my nose
  • Long Island is an island. More than 450 years after its naming, following its discovery by Columbus, and at least 200 years after geologists said so, New York’s highest court decided that it was indeed an island. But it’s not the only Long Island in America; there’s one on the upper Pacific Coast and no doubt others, should one study the maps closely.
  • Fall rolls on. It appears to be more like past autumns in the new millennium, except the fall of 2017, when the leaves stayed on the trees until December and forsythia, which normally blooms only in the spring, bloomed in the last half of November.
  • There is a raging battle going on throughout Long Island’s two non-city counties, Nassau and Suffolk. It splits the inhabitants into two camps, environmentalists and pro-developers.
  • The autumnal equinox has come and gone, just like that! Prepare for early evenings and late mornings. The birds were hip to equinoxes before the modern humans. Their intellects don’t obfuscate their primary objective. They are already on their way south.
  • September is not only back-to-school month, it is also the end-of-harvest month and fish-after-fish month. It is the time of the great migration: birds, fish, whales, and even butterflies and darning needles are winging it south.
  • Every resident of Southampton Town knows about the notorious sandpit with the euphonious name Sand Land situated at the end of Middle Line Highway next to Golf at the Bridge in Noyac.